Ballistic - Ballistic
Metal Blade
US Power/Thrash Metal
11 songs (47'40)
Release year: 2003
Ballistic, Metal Blade
Reviewed by Danny

The man behind Wardog is back. After three albums under the Wardog banner (1994-1999), vocalist/guitarist Tom Gattis strikes back with his new band, Ballistic. It has been said that the time off stage was miserable for Tom when Wardog was on tour. A new line up ... for a new band.

If you enjoyed Wardog's last album (A Sound Beating), you'll like this one for sure. Nothing has really changed : Ballistic plays bombastic power/thrash metal like Wardog used to! With Tom Gattis unique vocal style, you hardly made the switch from Wardog. As for the music, the man who pick up the guitar at 13 and started to learn various Black Sabbath and Kiss tunes, is a huge fan of punk (Ramones, Pistols). When you closely listen to Wardog and of course Ballistic, the punk influence is definitely here, creating a bombastic music cocktail.

The main variance spotted with Ballistic is these Iron Maiden guitar riffs and solos. You know, these classic melodic riffs that you can hear on every Maiden songs. They have been "implemented" here and there. The result ? A catchy music, groovy, fast and bombastic enough that bears all the characteristics of Wardog sound, with excellent melodies and guitar works, but also containing enough thrash elements that make you head banging all the time. Watch Me Do It is the hit of the album as far as I am concerned. I like this mi-tempo track, which proves that old school with new power metal sound kicks ass. But Watch Me Do It is not representative of the album. Actually, Ballistic prefers to play in the "speed league".

The opener Collision Course is a roller-coaster : fast, aggressive, "thrashy" as hell ... the perfect song to wake you up. The follower - Corpse Stacked High - sees the rhythm section at full speed, solid as a rock, dominated by Rikard Stjernquist, the well-known Jag Panzer drummer. Thanks to John Hererra (Ballistic's producer/engineer), Rikard and Tom hooked up in September of 2002 and immediately started writing intense thrash metal tunes! After Tom's departure from Wardog in 2000, he set out to find the best musicians possible to play the intense metal he had been craving. The other highlight of the rhythm section is the young Bulgarian lead guitarist, Petio Petev.

Ballistic is a never-ending power/thrash assault that does not stop until the end of the album (Undefeated, Call Me Evil, Silent Killer, Threshold Of Pain). No ballad, no keyboard, no complex structures. Here, we are talking of classic metal with a modern sound. Ballistic has been forged in metal ... and is hard as heady ;) The production is also good, clear and heavy enough. If you are fan of power/thrash metal and you are a Wardog fan, you should check this one.

This is an excellent debut album for those of you who don't know Wardog. For me, this is a logical follow up of ... A Sound Beating.

Killing Songs :
Watch Me Do It, Collision Course, Undefeated
Danny quoted 79 / 100
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