Review Summary: Another "new" face to the ever growing genre of blackened thrash metal that's sure to become a force to be reckoned with soon.
Blackened thrash metal has been getting a lot more popular recently with bands like Skeletonwitch and Toxic Holocaust getting more recognition as of late. Like most subgenres, there are bands who are worthy contributors to the scene and then there are those who are simply followers and the United Kingdom's Razor of Occam, are without a doubt, more than worthy contributors to this rising genre. The band has been around for 11 years and is composed of former members of the band Destroyer 666. Just what does Razor of Occam bring to the table though? How about a completely authentic black metal sound with some amazing guitar work. The band recently signing to Metal Blade will help them get their name out even further as their debut album, Homage To Martyrs, brings yet another slab of creativity and refreshment to today's metal scene.
Homage To Martyrs is a straight up assault of thrash riffs, ferocious blast beats and blistering guitar solos. The band's overall sound leans more towards the black metal side with the sinister shrieks and screams from vocalist/guitarist Matt and lightning fast double-bass and blast beats from drummer Peter Hunt along with the raw production. The guitar-work is obviously the one element that stands out the most on this album, though. The guitarists are magnificently skilled and show it off by transitioning between thrash riffs to evil sounding black metal style chords to excellent guitar solos. The album even kicks off with a thunderous solo on the opening track, "Altar of Corruption" and fittingly ends with three on "Shadow of the Cross."
While the guitar playing is superb, what really is great about Homage To Martyrs is how consistent it is. For it's entire duration, the album is relentless and doesn't slow down for a second. However, one issue that comes from this is that some of the tracks are indistinguishable from another and the album is somewhat short, being only 8 tracks long and 33 minutes. Regardless, the constant barrage of riffs and solos definitely provide a fun listen and an album with no dull moments is always good.
I can definitely see Razor of Occam being a forerunner in the current thrash scene in due time. For a debut album, Homage To Martyrs is extremely impressive and shows a lot of potential for future releases. Homage To Martyrs shows a lot more potential than some other new thrash album I've heard recently. This is definitely something to check out for anyone who is into black metal or thrash metal.
Originally written for Scenepointblank: