Review Summary: Heavy metal has Manowar, thrash has Tankard.
If there are five people in this world that you should invite to your house for a beer or six they should be Gerre, Frank, Axel, Andy and Oliver of German metal gods Tankard. Inviting anybody else to your house is just poor judgement on your part. And may you be smitten for making that ***ing mistake because I assure you it wont happen again. First off Tankard are the ***ing ***. They are the living embodiment of all that is metal. Tankard like to thrash. Tankard like to drink beer. Tankard like to watch zombie movies. Tankard like to sing about drinking beer and zombie invasions while conducting level 11 thrash symphonies. Tankard is to thrash as Manowar is to heavy metal. So by that account Tankard should be having their cocks sucked by every female mouth in a two hundred thousand mile radius. But sadly, Tankard have never received the same kind of critical acclaim that countrymen Sodom, Destruction and Kreator got. It's a damn shame because Tankard are an essential part of true thrash metal, from both a foreign and domestic standpoint. If you consider yourself a true thrasher and you don't have any Tankard on your playlist you can either A. do the morally responsible thing and listen to Tankard effective immediately or B. F.O.A.D.
Tankard is a thrash metal band hailing from Frankfurt, Germany. Born in 1982 this group of nefarious delinquents started thrashing at an early age. They started thrashing as soon as the thrashing began to formulate. They released their first album "Zombie Attack" in the year of all years. Yep, i'm talking about 1986 folks. While Metallica, Slayer and Testament were slaying the U.S and Sodom and Destruction were concocting satanic blitzkriegs elsewhere, Tankard were doing the two things they do best. Thrashing and drinking beer. This is thrash metal in it's most depraved most punk rock influenced form. Fast paced riffing, snarling vocals, shredding solos and and relentless energy dominate this record in addition to profoundly touching lyrics and a defiant *** YOU!!! attitude.
The guitars are standard fare in the realm of thrash metal. They are fast, simple and to the point. Axel and Andy concoct infectious riff patterns for you to dinosaur stomp the *** out of your living room. Start to throw and break ***, piss in your brothers girlfriends hair, eat soggy bread out of your dogs bowl. These Krauts are capable of all this even before they start soloing. When they start soloing I swear the whole world goes into full metal mode. What you think is an earthquake is actually just the earth rocking the *** out. Jesus gives the Christians a middle finger as he air guitars like a mother***ing champ. Ignoring his calls for peace, love and happiness Jesus doesn't care to listen. Jesus is too busy rocking the *** out. Deal with your own problems pussy. When the fantastic chest beating rhythm of "Empty Tankerd" opens and paves way into the sinister death pact "Thrash To Death there is nothing to be done but listening and drinking. The frenetic riff-fest of "Zombie Attack" recalls the unchained energy and aggression of the earliest punk sounds while keeping it metal.
The vocals are one of my favorite parts of this record. Gerre is a pretty badass singer. He utilizes a vocal style that is part screaming, part shouting and part singing. His manic delivery contributes heavily to the aggressive audio madness that is "Zombie Attack". Tankard's music latches upon you like a goddamn crocodile who drags his prey under water for a post workout snack. Besides having a killer voice Gerre is a lyrical genius. His lyrics possess artistic depth and emotional conviction that is rarely found in modern music today. 'Maniac Forces" touches upon the dick waving contest between Russia and the U.S.A in the Cold War inspired epic while Tankard decide to get a little intimate with the alcohol drenched ballads "Alcohol" and "Empty Tankards". On these tracks Tankard introduce to us the noble concept of brotherhood, heavy partying and drinking till your liver gives out. "Thrash Till Death" on the other hand is a righteous initiation for all the newbies out there who want to sell their souls to metal. Other topics include zombies, gangs, killing posers and mercenaries. The sheer diversity of the lyrical content will sway you in a way that indie rock never could.
The rhythm section courtesy of Oliver and Frank is ***ing executed perfectly. You know in metal there's a certain stigma revolving around the bassist's involvement or lack thereof. That issue is not found here. because Frank is the ***ing man. His finger tapping is not only present, not only following the lead of the guitars but in the ***ing front-lines thrashing out wildly with his brothers. Meanwhile, behind the drum kit Oliver is putting on a clinic. Beating his skins like a hooker who opened her mouth without permission Oliver puts on a rousing performance complete with drum fills and mindless bashing. There is no weak component in "Zombie Attack" or "Tankard for that matter".
The band plays together in a cohesive manner as evidenced by the quality of songs found on Zombie Attack. There are ten songs here and they all slay hard. It's important for a band to have chemistry because if you're not all in chances are the fractured bromance is going to negatively impact your music. Fortunately, we don't need have to worry about that pessimistic bull*** because that's not present here. This album is for true thrashers only. No posers need apply.