Destruction - Eternal Devastation
Steamhammer/SPV
Thrash Metal
7 songs (35:52)
Release year: 1986
Destruction, Steamhammer/SPV
Reviewed by Thomas

If I had lived back in the glorious pitch black eighties, I wouldn’t have thought that raw thrash metal would age so properly and become as timeless as it has. Perhaps it’s all the new thrash revivalists that keep clouding the young metal minds out there that make me seek back to the roots, to the heart, the soul and the very body of what fresh and newborn bands are so eager to recapture. Let’s face it, with the equipment used by sound engineers, and by the standards of various labels today no-one, I repeat, no-one will ever be able to gain the evilness, the rawness, the blackness, the anger and the hellish attitude that the old guys had, and some still possess. Destruction are one of the bands I keep getting back to whenever a modern thrash metal song by an equally modern thrash metal band gets airtime on the local radio station. This album is in particular a marvellous checkpoint for anyone wanting to take a trip back in time to the dark days. Eternal Devastation is Destruction’s second effort, they picked up where they left off with their face-smashing debut and many claim, myself included, that this was a step up. Yeah, I know that sounds unrealistic, but as unprofessional as it may sound, this kicks some major ass.

Eternal Devastation does kick off at a slightly slower pace than Infernal Overkill with a nice calm intro and some headbangable chugging to introduce opener Curse the Gods. It picks up faster than you would imagine though, and before you know it Destruction has taken you on a rollercoaster of riffs through hell. Ah, just like last time. From this moment on, they show signs of being slightly more mature, especially considering the song-writing. The riffs, vocal lines, various shifts and twists sounds more deliberate and thought through. Seeing as how this doesn’t come on the behalf of anything else, these additions are received with arms wide open. The insanity of Schmier’s vocal work is perhaps even more distinct here and he doesn’t ever let up. Riffs chop their way through steel like a hot knife through butter in every song, and the same goes for the inspiring slightly sloppy but ever so amazing leads.

Destruction’s weak but audible black metal stain can be discussed up and down for all eternity, but one cannot deny that there are some hints of thrash’s meaner twin brother to be found on a number of occasions here. After a short and lively intro, United by Hatred descends many steps down to the pits of hell, and I can’t help but think about their colleagues up north that spawned legions of demons when I hear the glorious, perfectly black riff that follows. Not entirely black metal surely, but the hints are unavoidable and even though it might be considered to soft now, comparisons were definitely drawn back then, and the various theories weren’t entirely baseless if you ask me when it comes to black metal influences in the early days of German thrash metal.

With songs like the incredibly furious Eternal Ban Destruction show off their perfect control during high tempo songs. Guitar-work fast as lightning smites you to the ground, while Schmier’s tortured vocals rasp, cut and slash through flesh and rip your heart out without mercy. Upcoming Devastation are along with fellow German thrashers Vendetta‘s brilliant Fade to Insanity one of my all-time favourite thrash metal instrumentals. Who said that thrash metal couldn’t be executed properly without vocals? On a side-note and to be honest with you, thrash instrumentals are among my favourites since they’re often faster, more fun and entertaining as well as fiercer than say a progressive metal song that works like nothing but a showcase. In addition to that, those who find Schmier’s vocals a little hard to swallow would definitely not hit the skip button when this bastard kicks in at full throttle.

Destruction close down Eternal Devastation like they opened it. With pure excellence through a calm yet strangely beautiful classical inspired intro and riffs that’ll drag you all the way to the fiery downstairs. Confused Mind sums up the whole album with brilliance and includes every aspect that I’ve mentioned through this review. Amazing instrumental bits, especially the riffing, some hints of eviler on-goings here and there as well as face-stomping rhythms, flesh-piercing solo’s and not the least Schmier’s top notch vocal performance. Need I say more? Damn, I wish I were born back then. Bullet-belts, leather jackets and cigarette-smoke as far as the eye can see. Classic thrash that is essential to any metal-head.

Killing Songs :
ALL!
Thomas quoted CLASSIC
Other albums by Destruction that we have reviewed:
Destruction - Spiritual Genocide reviewed by Goat and quoted 79 / 100
Destruction - Day Of Reckoning reviewed by Goat and quoted 83 / 100
Destruction - Sentence of Death/Infernal Overkill reviewed by Thomas and quoted CLASSIC
Destruction - D.E.V.O.L.U.T.I.O.N reviewed by Goat and quoted 86 / 100
Destruction - Inventor of Evil reviewed by Cody and quoted 90 / 100
To see all 9 reviews click here
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