We are not going to try and convince that there is anything particularly new going on with Nuclear Death from Finnish metallers Unhoped, but that the resourceful and fiery album is thoroughly enjoyable is a persuasion which is easy to declare. The six track release is an insatiable and brawling confrontation driven by a thrash metal core wearing at times a coat of death spawned malevolence, one which takes the band from the shadows into a sharper spotlight of promise.
Formed to the end of 2007, Unhoped first made an impression with their debut EP First Blood at the beginning of 2010, the release finding acclaim in the media and amongst fans setting the band up for a busy year. A change of vocalist followed as the band began working on second release Die Harder, the album also gaining strong responses and support. Released by Violent Journey Record, Nuclear Death has all the caustic charm and weaponry to take the Varkaus bred quintet into the widest awareness and as mentioned though it might not be breaking down walls of invention the doors of thrash have been kicked wide open by the band.
Pestilence opens up the ferocity, its immediate assault of crippling rhythms and raging riffs a squalling turmoil upon the ear, a sonic maelstrom of carnivorous hunger which the senses have to take a firm grip to stand tall in the face of. Once the opening strike has settled the band unleash a barrage of merciless destruction through the drums of M. Huisko, co-instigator bassist S. Parviainen growling with equal rabidity. It is prime thrash with the rapacious riffing from guitarists K. Laanto and A. Paasu as exhausting as it is enterprising in its unfussy but greedy barrage. The band’s influences such as Slayer, Testament, and Exodus are certainly more than strong breezes within the rampant fury working on the senses adding to an invention which is not unique but wholly captivating from Unhoped.
The vocals of Jyrki Luostarinen steer and guide the opener through creative waters, his snarling breath and choppy textures when shuffling things up richly pleasing and it continues into the following Modern State Of Sodomy. The track admittedly does not have the ability to hook the listener as its predecessor and most of the subsequent songs, but as a tempest of well-crafted and effective intensity it leaves one wanting little else.
The album steps up another gear with the excellent Eternal Infernal and gets better and better across the remaining songs. The track abrases and slaps the ear from start to finish, again the tempestuous invention across the stance and delivery of the song unpredictable and thus riveting, whilst the chugging appetite of the beast is insatiable and infectious. Originality maybe scarce but passion and imagination has a prime seat in the adrenaline powered song and release.
Empire Of Lies is the best track on the album, its chunky throaty bass grind and sabre sharp riffs welcoming in the impending furnace whilst the drums scythe through bone with thunderous and honed spite. In full gait and muscular expanse, the track exploits the air with venomous enterprise, offering a range of grooves either of serpentine of carnal spawning and shards of sonic flame in searing solos. As ever the vocals graze and scowl with potent antagonism to intimidate and accentuate the strength of the provocation elsewhere.
The closing title track is old school thrash and shows there is nothing wrong with returning to roots and rejuvenating them with fresh maliciousness and energy. It completes a thoroughly pleasing release which makes no demands or promises but leaves a deep depth of pleasure to feed upon regularly. For thrash fans of all tastes Nuclear Death and Unhoped is a contagious treat to keenly devour.
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