Defiance - The Prophecy
Candlelight Records
Thrash Metal
11 songs (40:20)
Release year: 2009
Defiance, Candlelight Records
Reviewed by Thomas

Defiance were probably not the first band that came to mind when the reformation-bug spread in thrash metal scene faster than you could say H1N1. These guys released two great and one mediocre album back in the late eighties/early nineties, and haven’t released anything in particular in 15 years. Bassist Mike Kaufman is the only remaining original member in the line-up though familiar faces are re-appearing from the past on here as well. Acknowledged and experienced thrash drummer Mark Hernandez (Heathen, Vio-lence and Forbidden among others) takes care of the skin-beating as well as Steve Esquieevel (Skinlab) and Jim Adams (Altar of the King) to handle respectively vocals and guitars. The sound of the band haven’t changed particularly as this is still speedy thrash metal with a hint of much appreciated complexity. The modern and edgy production is steely and rock solid and gives me a brutal and blistering At War-vibe. The same goes for the songs, as rolling, thunderous riffs crack the ground beneath and reveals a fiery underground waiting to consume you.

The constant shouting of vocalist Steve Esquieevel sounds like a combination of later Chuck Billy with a hint of Tom Araya only slightly raspier and rougher around the edges. He puts a chokehold on the listener with his somewhat harsh yet strangely appealing thick and powerful croaks. He wraps each song up in a dark cloak and adds both darkness, depression and aggression to the properly crafted tunes. The thing that thrills me most here though, is the ingenious and shredding leads that is surprisingly clean for a thrash act. Not only does Jim Adams churn out riff after riff loaded with quality but he’s a great solo-guitarist as well with excellent technique and imagination enough to strike the average listener with awe and keep things more than exciting enough even for the haters. The lead-sound is violently sharp and cuts through the picture like a double-edged sword that’ll shred your face to pieces. Along with the blacksmith Kaufman and Hernandez, the trio create a backbone that’ll endure the heaviest of burdens. With this base and a surprisingly strong sense for “stomp ‘n roll” song-writing these guys have a great starting point for a pretty successful comeback.

Although this may not be a revolutionary comeback that’ll convince the long lost haters, Defiance proves, despite being a C-level and third-wave Bay Area thrash band, that the old remain oldest and are out to kick some random modern retro-thrash ass. Recommended.

Killing Songs :
Prion, Bastard Son. Dissolving Around You
Thomas quoted 82 / 100
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There are 6 replies to this review. Last one on Wed Nov 18, 2009 7:21 pm
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