Annihilator
King of the Kill


4.0
excellent

Review

by Drew Tyler USER (68 Reviews)
July 24th, 2012 | 43 replies | 3,771 views


Release Date: 1995 | Tracklist

Review Summary: An album that proves a change in style isn’t always a bad thing.

3 of 3 thought this review was well written

After several turbulent years with a rotating cast of band mates and more than a few tours, founding guitarist Jeff Waters decided that it was time to disband his group and start anew. King of the Kill can be seen as more of a solo album, as Waters wrote and handled guitar, bass and vocal duties for the entire record. Only drummer Randy Black remained for the recording of King of the Kill, as he laid down drum tracks for the record. Released at a time when thrash metal had reached near extinction, Waters saw fit to modify the sound of his music even more in order to appeal to a dwindling metal audience.

The album continues the transformation of the band’s sound started on 1993’s Set the World on Fire; showing even more variation from the technical thrash found on earlier releases. The album ranges in styles as it has its pop-like ballad moments, its grooving moments, and still maintains some semblance of heavy thrash on tracks like “King of the Kill” and “Second to None”. Despite a clear effort to move away from early styles, the music is still nonetheless compelling. Backed by clear production, Jeff Waters continues to deliver quality guitar riffs and solos, and this time around he aims to write catchy and memorable material that will get lodged in your brain for days. Even the completely un-heavy moments on tracks like ballad “In the Blood” and the instrumental “Catch the Wind” showcase a seasoned and veteran-like musicianship with compelling lyrics and music that will undoubtedly please even the most stubborn thrash fan. Surprisingly enough, Jeff Waters handles vocal duties quite well, as he has a good voice that ranges from rough metal vocals, to clean singing.

Moving right along, the album still has the attitude and energy we’ve come to expect from this band. Though most of the band was absent from the recording, Jeff still manages to make the music sound lively and aggressive, and it is backed by some superb production that enables every instruments to be heard quite clearly, and the tracks flow together seamlessly. Subject matter is much the same as Set the World on Fire, with topics ranging from war and violence, to more personal matters on the ballad tracks.

With all that being said, not all is so perfect here. While I personally struggle to take issues with the record, others may be completely turned off from the change in style presented here. Though the first half of the record is heavy enough for the average metal head, the last half can be bogged down by the various different musical styles on the album, which makes for a sometimes confusing listen. There are also a couple tracks that may fall flat, and an occasional riff or two can become repetitive. However the negatives are so small in comparison to the positives that I refuse to spend time floundering for some non-existent issue.

Despite alienating some fans with a change in style, and despite a dying metal scene, Annihilator came out swinging with their fourth album. This album is certainly nowhere near as ground-breaking as the first two albums, but still great in its own right. Listeners beware; the change in style isn’t for everyone, but more accepting fans of the band will certainly find this album a compelling listen.


RECOMMENDED TRACKS:
- King of the Kill
- Annihilator
- Hell is a war
- Catch the Wind (Instrumental)



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user ratings (122)
Chart.
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
ThrashTillDeath94
July 23rd 2012



591 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I was astonished to find that this didn't have a review.

CaptainDooRight
July 23rd 2012



28832 Comments


Good to see you repping this bro. Auto pos.

ThrashTillDeath94
July 23rd 2012



591 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Slow night i guess...

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
July 24th 2012



6006 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review, pos.

King Of The Kill was my first contact with Annihilator back in the day and it is an awesome album in general, much better than Set The World On Fire.

"21" is also a killer song.


On another note, the order of tracks in my physical copy is different with respect to the track list of the album present in Sputnik... Strange...

Digging: Troldhaugen - Obzkure Anekdotez For Maniakal Massez

justapunk
July 24th 2012



3 Comments


This is crap compared to the first 2 annihilator albums. After never neverland, this band just loses my interest.

ThrashTillDeath94
July 24th 2012



591 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

"On another note, the order of tracks in my physical copy is different with respect to the track list
of the album present in Sputnik... Strange..."

Thats because the track-list depicted above was taken from the 1995 remastered version. You must have
one of the original 1994 pressings.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
July 24th 2012



6006 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

You must have one of the original 1994 pressings.

Indeed, I have the first edition of the record.

I don't know why they changed the order of the songs, I mean the track list in the first edition works fine as it is.

ThrashTillDeath94
July 24th 2012



591 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

My only guess would be that Waters was not satisfied with the original track list, for whatever reason that may be.

KILL
July 24th 2012



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

gd stuff

Digging: Invisible - El jardin de los presentes

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
July 24th 2012



20416 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Great album.

Good review too, pos'd.

facupm
July 24th 2012



7420 Comments


good review, pos'd
should chech out some more annihilator, since I only listened to Alice in Hell and Never Neverland

NoMeansYes
July 24th 2012



1012 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Love the bass on 21, and King of the kill is sweet live. Good album

YoYoMancuso
July 24th 2012



11020 Comments


nice review
fucking amazing record

Annihilatorgods
October 14th 2012



2 Comments


I enjoy all the annihilator albums,wish I had of given them a listen back in the 80s

StarlessAnd
October 14th 2012



443 Comments


sup anthraxks

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
January 9th 2013



19672 Comments


meh can't get into this one

Madbutcher3
June 30th 2013



1102 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Album is pretty damn catchy and Jeff's leads are just unfair

Madbutcher3
June 30th 2013



1102 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

urgh damn refresh made me double post

Fluttertrank
June 30th 2013



17098 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Album is pretty damn catchy. [2]

ThrashTillDeath94
July 1st 2013



591 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I actually find myself listening to this album more than any other Annihilator album lately. Not that
i think it's the best one, but it definitely has a high replay value.



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