Metallica
Kill 'Em All


4.0
excellent

Review

by ImTheOnlyThugInTheBuildin USER (142 Reviews)
November 1st, 2012 | 258 replies | 3,844 views


Release Date: 1983 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A great debut, certainly good for the band's age and considering it created its entire genre, but not perfect.

4 of 4 thought this review was well written

The year was 1983, and the stage was set for a phenomenon. An up and coming band had just fired their guitarist Dave Mustaine and called upon the services of former Exodus man Kirk Hammett for the recording of their ten song debut. The band was Metallica, taking their influences from the brash style of Venom and Judas Priest, they were to push the boundaries of what was acceptable in heavy music of its day to the absolute limit, creating a raw, powerful debut album that is generally considered to be the absolute birth of thrash metal.

Kill Em All was a fast album, more aggressive than anything that had been released to date, garnering the band a fair amount of attention in the Bay Area scene, building them a nice following. The album was something entirely fresh for its day, with songs such as Hit The Lights showing exactly how fast and heavy music could be played, without ever sacrificing its musical integrity. Hit The Lights was the original thrash metal song, a blueprint for everything else that was to follow, opening with the sound of the band jamming, before diving headfirst into a fast series of riffs that demolish everything in their path. Whilst not quite as mature musically nor lyrically as the albums that would follow, this was more than an adequate song, standing the test of time as one of the bands best songs, with the immortal sound of James Hetfield's tortured shriek of "hit the lights".

Hit The Lights is not the only great song found on Kill Em All, with reworked song The Four Horsemen (originally entitled The Mechanix during the time Dave Mustaine was part of the band) standing tall, along with Metal Militia and pure speed-metal brilliance Whiplash. Phantom Lord, however, proves to be the meatiest track on the album, being another Mustaine-written song, but a great track with some powerful riffs, particularly the first riff in the song. The guitar lines across the majority of this album are really well written and played, despite the speed they are played at and the age of those responsible for them. Whiplash has an incredibly fast riff that thunders along at a marvelous pace, whilst Motorbreath has some riffs that hint at a punk influence going into the writing.

The vocals on this release are completely chaotic, with Hetfield using a rather juvenile screech throughout much of the release, which isn't the best of vocal deliveries, but suits the unrefined nature of this album really well. The best vocal song on this album is found on Seek And Destroy, the most well known song from the album, being one of the only songs in which Hetfield sings in a normal tone for the majority of it, only occasionally letting out the shriek found on the rest of the album. The bass is audible throughout the album, which is rare for a Metallica album, and sounds decent enough. The extended bass solo, Anasthesia Pulling Teeth is a well written piece that showcases Cliff Burton at his finest.

However, there is also a very ugly side to this album, with the production being right at the forefront of it. This was recorded on a tiny budget of $1,500 and it definitely shows, with a huge amount of reverb on the vocals being more than audible, and the album having a very unprofessional sound to it, particularly on the recording quality of the guitars. This is a really poor production job, and whilst not being as bad as some early thrash acts, it certainly hinders the album. The other weakness of this album is the lack of memorability found on this record. Many of the songs are not catchy enough, and feel too long, without enough high quality riffs to carry them across their lengths. When the album works, it is fine, but the weaknesses on this album are unavoidable.

This is a solid enough release, but is marred by the production found on here and the crippling lack of many moments that stick in the listeners head. Purchase this for historical value and the The Four Horsemen, Whiplash, Phantom Lord and Hit The Lights definitely, but do not expect the finest album of all time.



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user ratings (4384)
Chart.
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excellent
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
theacademy
Staff Reviewer
November 1st 2012



28420 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

dude i know you're new, so let me help you out here... you may have *JUST* changed the game, they don't do this often, but every once in a while they'll feature a really good review for an album like this... you gotta go for it man! go ask!!!

Digging: Kimbra - The Golden Echo

menawati
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



15906 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

awww

Digging: Nemrud - Journey of the Shaman

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



19642 Comments


dude that's quite the compliment, especially coming from theacademy, and yes it was a great review

menawati
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



15906 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

oh dear

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



19642 Comments


@skeletor,

featuring means putting the review on the top of the home page for everybody to see.

However, I think theacademy was actually just being a sarcastic prick and I didn't really realize it at the time. my bad

KingHarkinian
November 1st 2012



435 Comments


Oah! I though you stopped making reviews. How wrong I was.

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



19642 Comments


but fuck it, they should feature this whether he was being sarcastic or not, you've written enough reviews damn.

Chortles
November 1st 2012



17944 Comments


nice first comment

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



19642 Comments


I'm gonna request a feature for you man lol doubt they'll do it they only do new releases too, but it would be funny especially since academy was being sarcastic.

KingHarkinian
November 1st 2012



435 Comments


Hey, Atari85!

Have you ever played CDI? It's probably the best console ever.

KingHarkinian
November 1st 2012



435 Comments


gay band. [2]

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



19642 Comments


@KingHarkinian,

not sure I have what is that?

@skeletor,

already asked for kill em' all to be featured want me to change it to st anger?

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



19642 Comments


@andcas,

wow man i like pop punk too, but it's much more gay than metallica

DarthMann
November 1st 2012



13815 Comments


this review is a disgrace to this album pos

KingHarkinian
November 1st 2012



435 Comments


You should check it out. It's an console from 1986 that features some of the best games ever made. It's just epic.



DarthMann
November 1st 2012



13815 Comments


idk man your reviews are so plain i mean its not like theyre bad or anythign and they describe the album well but its just like haha hetfield has gay vox just listen to seek and destroy u can see. the guitar is cool. mustaine wrote some of the solos. x 1000 end of review man spice it up add in a few jokes or something idk

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 1st 2012



19642 Comments


sweet man will do, are you actually a new user or an alt?

what's your avatar?

KILL
November 1st 2012



71372 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

andcas youre out your element again silly!

Digging: Invisible - El jardin de los presentes

sixdegrees
November 1st 2012



16917 Comments


KILL 'Em All

Digging: Ted Nugent - Shutup&jam!

KILL
November 1st 2012



71372 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

start with pop punkers ya



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