Californian KAOS’ latest release is an ode 80’s and early 90’s thrash metal scene with influences ranging as far back as the pioneers of the genre, as well as the bands form so called second wave of trash metal.
There is no much philosophy to the band’s approach to the music and as such it could best be described as an extremely potent and straight-forward thrash metal. The band has been around since the 80’s, but their first album came out in 2000. Now in 2010 the band has released The Pits Of Existence, which is by far their best release to date and a simply a great way to start off thrash metal year 2010.
After a somewhat too long, mediocre instrumental the band hits into a fast and blistering “Bleed Some More”. The sound is very typical for the genre; clean but raw. The bass seems buried down and the drums come across as too dominant. However the overall sound is good and energetic and once you crack it up on you stereo, you won’t want to turn it down.
The title track slows the things down and groovy “Let God Sort Them Out” set for the most part the path the rest of the album follows in; the mixture of fast, mid-tempo and groovy songs that have few things in common: constant high energy, good performance and good dynamics within the songs.
Generally the band’s performance is very good and perhaps that’s not so surprising bearing in mind that the band has been around for a long long time and while their music might not be ground breaking, it’s just very good thrash metal.
Jason Darnell’s vocals are nothing to brag about, but bear in mind that this statement comes form the someone who’s thinks that Max Calavera should sound more like John Bush, Rob Flynn should sing more and scream less and Demonic era didn’t suit Chuck Billy that well. What I am trying to say is, the vocals are not bad, they are just not my cop of tea – I am simply not into that harsh screaming. The old-school backing vocals bring the Kreator and Anthrax to my mind and they help make the some parts of the songs more melodic and memorable.
As mentioned above KAOS had kick-started 2010 in a great manner for thrash metal and with the revival that this genre is experiencing at the time it would be highly unfair if The Pits Of Existence didn’t get the attention it deserves.