RANGER - Speed & Violence
December 7, 2016, a year ago
Their debut, Where Evil Dwells, made my Best of 2015 year-end list, at that time comparing the sound to Destruction. Overall, the focus is now decidedly more North American. With a title sounding like Exciter's sophomore effort and a knife wielding cover art somewhat reminiscent of the Canuck's debut, these Finns wear their influences proudly! Dan Beehler would surely approve of the over the top, high pitched squealing vocals too!
As such, these are eight, raw speed metal cuts (“Evil Barrier” is but a short, 96 second instrumental intermezzo) that recall the earliest days of the genre, down to the competing, frenzied guitar breaks. Jump around the room music, during a listening session it's practically impossible not to headbang, air guitar/drum or get lost in the swirling riffs. “Demon Wind” offers a catchy, hypersonic Iron Maiden melody throughout, while “Night Slasher”, with wailing vocals, is a brief return towards the Teutonic Gods of Thrash. The aural equivalent of a cheesy horror film, an enjoyable adrenaline ride, but no Academy Award nominated art film. Then again, how many people even watch one of those, let alone enjoy it?