Be prepared when you are about to listen to this album because this album will deliver thrash metal so hard that you will fall backwards. ¨Dark Angel¨ made this remarkable thrash album and this album has been claimed to be a minor thrash metal classic. The members in ¨Dark Angel¨ didn't have so many aces in their arm-sleeves but they knew how to play them well, the album ¨Darkness Descends¨ is considered to be one of Thrash metals most extreme and heaviest along with other extreme thrash bands such as legendary ¨Slayer¨ for example. And now when you have read the intro its time to have a closer look at the band members and the songs.
We start with the vocalist Don Doty,the first vocalist of the band, great singing for this type of music I must say. Don sings with attitude, the vocals are aggressive, quite brutal because of the harsh growlings that he makes and of course on top of that some short bursts of short screams. What more can I say, he is great in this type of music but of course there are people around that this is just noise, but very great noise if you ask me.
We move on to the two guitarists of this brutal band, Erik Meyer and Jim Durkin (which is a current member of ¨Dreams Of Damnation¨, an american death metal band). These guys are also great musicians, they play with intensity, their riffs are very heavy, they are also sometimes complexive and a bit technical but the riffs in general are ultra-fast. The guitar solos are great, just as great as the riffing but the solos are almost pure chaos and disorder, not must catchiness but the solos are played with true skills.
Rob Yahn was the first bassist and he was in the band until now, this guy does not make himself so ¨visible¨ in this album. He keeps up with the rest of the band and he does a great job. There are no bass filler sections or solos from Yahn but you can still hear his bass lines loud and clear on most of the tracks. Sorry but that is all I can come up with about Rob Yahn.
And now to the most spectacular member off this band, the drummer Gene Hoglan, a drummer that has been playing in many other great bands such as ¨Testament¨, ¨Death¨, ¨Old Man's Child¨ plus other bands as well. Gene is playing like an unstoppable freight-train, machine gun drumming when its best. Most drum patterns on this album is basically the same but there are some variation as well.
THINGS THAT I LIKED
Lets see, the things that I really enjoyed was the vocals, it was a really long time when I heard so aggressive vocals from a thrash metal band and it felt so good too. These vocals really helped to get this band heavy, the bad thing is that he is no longer the vocalist of this band. Another thing that I enjoyed was the guitar work, the riffs are solid and strong but not as catchy that I hoped when I first read about this band but the shredding grabbed my attention pretty good anyway. The last thing that I thought was good about this band was the life-span of the tracks, no song was longer than six minutes or otherwise you would been bored with these kind of intensity. Most songs has a length of about four and five minutes except for the track ¨Black Porphecies¨ which has a time of eight minutes.
THINGS THAT I DISLIKED
This section won't be to long so I guess you can read this too, Well one thing that I didn't liked was the drumming, Gene is an expert behind the drums but his forever pounding just made me bored on most tracks. There is no slow or medium paced pattern in none of the songs, if the drumming is slow there is always another ¨drum part¨ that just keeps delivering these fast beats. The drumming was not that catchy either, many songs are pure headbanging but you would get concussed if you would headbang to all the songs, not many pauses here. Another thing that I didn't like so much was the slightly poor variation in the songs, some tracks sounded quite the same and my interest started to fail but I did enjoy quite many songs though.
Done and I hope that this album has been helpful, this was indeed spine-crushing thrash metal, not my area of thrash but I did enjoy it very much. People maybe think that this review was unnessicary but I just had to get this of my chest. If you like bands similar to ¨Slayer¨ you will enjoy this I'm pretty shore, if you dig thrash metal that is towards the ¨calmer¨ area and like bands like ¨Megadeth¨, ¨Artillery¨ or ¨Metallica¨ this is maybe nothing for you. Remeber that this is an extreme thrash metal band, I would say that this is a blend of 60% thrash and 40% death metal so this is heavy sh*t in other words. Death metal fans and thrashers should have this album or just a few songs in their collection because this band is an important band that helped to build metal in my opinion.
+ Extreme drumming when its best
+ Great vocals, aggressive and evil
+ Very good balance between the intruments
+ This is pure thrashing madness
- If you are not used to this kind of metal madness, I will doubt that you like this
- The drumming can get on your nerves
-- The Burning Of Sodom
-- Death Is Certain (Life Is Not)
-- Darkness Descends
And the overall album rating will the strongest 4.5 I will ever give: 4.5/5