Review Summary: A solid thrash metal album that any fan of the genre can enjoy.
What do we mostly associate with Spain? Paella, sangria, sun, sand and sea, usually. But what about thrash metal? Would you associate THAT with Spain? Surely not, seeing as how Spain has had no notable thrash metal bands, right?
are a Spanish thrash metal band who formed in the late 80’s when the genre was at its peak. Hell on Earth
is their second album, released in 1990, the same year that metal classics Seasons in the Abyss
and Rust in Peace
were released by thrash giants Slayer
respectively. And while it doesn’t stand up to those classic albums, Hell on Earth
is still a solid thrash metal record that any fan of the genre can enjoy.
After the glorified intro that is Embrion
, the first full track, Witch (Hell Below the Belly)
greets our ears with fast riffs, thundering bass-lines and speedy drum fills as Josep ‘Pep’ Casas shouts into the microphone with all his might. Needless to say it rips your face off, and this trend continues throughout the album, with little variation from the band. The slower-paced intro riffs to the title track, Don’t You Have Fear
and In Your Grave
only last a minute or so before the band hits full throttle again. They’re able to do this and still retain the listener’s interest thanks to a bunch of genuinely catchy riffs and blistering solos which are scattered throughout the album. Truth be told, Hell on Earth
doesn’t really have any bad tracks, barring the instrumental closer Cyclone
which doesn’t really do enough to justify its ten minute length due to samey riffs, repetitive drum fills, and an uninspired attempt a bass solo; as a result it becomes boring and begins to drag well before it’s over.
Something which could be considered both a good and bad point about Hell on Earth
are the lyrics, which are just laughably cheesy. Witch (Hell Below the Belly)
for example is about Satan impregnating his ‘mistress’, and with lines such as:
black and hot sperm
into the abdomen.
It’s hard to take them seriously. The rest of the lyrics aren’t much better, with every song either about violence, religion, or both. Blasphemy
and Midnight Confession
are both about the sexual deviance of the Catholic Church, featuring such lines as “high priest wa*ks, touching virgin childs
” and “priest sticks d*ck, up the nun’s ar*e
”. Whereas the title track is about the end of the world, and In Your Grave
is about corpses decomposing. The band also shows they’re not content with forgetting their roots with Inquisición
, a song with entirely Spanish lyrics.
Despite the cheesy lyrics and a dud track, Hell on Earth
is a great album. What it lacks in variation it makes up for with pure speed, heaviness and aggression, everything a thrash fan could possibly want. So remember, the next time someone asks you what you mostly associate with Spain, instead of the usual answers, just simply reply “F*ck Off