Manilla Road
Out of the Abyss


2.5
average

Review

by Gigglesdemon USER (31 Reviews)
June 10th, 2011 | 10 replies


Release Date: 1988 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A painfully average album by a great band.

Boring, derivative, uninspired, average. None of these words describe Manilla Road. However, they do describe this album. It is a fairly common thrash album. And unfortunately, a lot of thrash albums are pretty damn average.

While Manilla Road nailed the thrash sound on Mystification, here they don’t seem to know what to do with it. Mark Shelton’s frenzied riffing and tortured vocals were excellent, but here they fall short of all expectations. His riffs, instead of being the superbly crafted ones from all the previous albums, are derivative, unexciting, and and worst, undistinguishable. Shelton’s previous genius does surface at times, such as one the album highlights Return of the Old Ones and the title track, Out of the Abyss. Every other riff just seems average or reminiscent of ones we have heard before.

However, Shelton has vastly improved his harsh vocals. He truly sounds evil at times on this album, far more so than any other previous album. Whitechapel, the albums bloated and overblown epic, while almost painful to listen to, has extraordinary harsh vocals.

This album also brings back a dreaded part of Manilla Road’s early career. Dragging songs. Whitechapel, despite being very fast paced, begins to drag at the halfway mark and never picks up steam again. The album’s closer, Helicon suffers the same fate.

Scott Park’s bass is more prominent on this album than previous albums, but even his fantastic talent isn’t enough to save this mess of an album. It feels like Manilla Road was trying to culminate everything they’ve done on this album, and as a result if feels messy and unfocused at times. The two standouts, Return of the Old Ones and Out of the Abyss, feel very different from the rest of the album, which is perhaps why they actually are good. The whole album tries for a thrash metal feel, but it fails.

While this album is not bad by any stretch of the imagination, it is a massive disappointment when you compare it to the band’s back catalogue and the derivativeness of the whole thing.

Pros:
-Great harsh vocals
-Nice bass lines

Cons:
-Derivative riffs
-Dragging tracks

Recommended Tracks:
Out of the Abyss
Return of the Old Ones



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user ratings (45)
Chart.
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Gigglesdemon
June 10th 2011


187 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

My next entry into the discog of Manilla Road. As always, CC welcome.

Killerhit
February 26th 2013


6013 Comments


dude nobody comments on this is pretty good

manosg
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2015


11719 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Not a bad album at all, somewhere around a 3-3.5. Very good production for Manilla Road standards as well.

ChaoticVortex
April 20th 2017


795 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Manilla Road's first bump after many years of brilliance. The combination of 80's thrash metal and the more epic, classic heavy metal Manilla stlye often comes off disjointed, and not suprisingly the songs that embrace the latter are much better. Still has some great riffs, solos, and even good production.

manosg
Staff Reviewer
April 21st 2017


11719 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Nice bump Vortex. Glad to see this album getting more love.

Thalassic
July 8th 2017


2617 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

HOT TAKE:

This is one of the band's best

bloc
January 3rd 2018


55934 Comments


Thought this was significantly weaker than the few albums that came before it

Digging: Paris - Sleeping with the Enemy

Casavir
September 5th 2018


3562 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This album has aged poorly for me, I'm afraid. Like, there isn't a single track on this that is as good as the material on the thrashier Mystification and it feels bereft of identity. This is only made more annoying by the lack of riff variation on this for a more thrash-oriented release. It automatically invites comparison to much of the thrash that was being released in '88 and Out of the Abyss just does not stack up.

necropig
September 5th 2018


5456 Comments


Haven't spun this enough for rates

Digging: Kommodus - An Imperial Sun Rises

bloc
September 5th 2018


55934 Comments


Don't bother



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