|Review: Soothsayer - Death Radiation|
Label: PRC Music
Year released: 2019
Genre: Thrash Metal
Review online: March 8, 2020
Reviewed by: Luxi Lahtinen
I remember the first time I heard these Canadian Crossover Thrash legends' demo, To Be a Real Terrorist, in '86, which made me rush to get their debut Have a Good Time three years later. Their aggressive attitude and punky Thrash sound cemented them as one of my favorite bands back then, which is why it broke my heart when they went the way of many underground acts in the '90s and split up in '92. Lucky for me, they reformed in 2007 and released their sophomore effort Troops in Time six years later, which I recall mostly being a good time. This leads us to six years later with their third album Death Radiation, and I unfortunately don't think I'll be remembering this one very fondly.
This is still a Soothsayer album, so it still has that punky Thrash flair and a blatant disregard for modern conventions. However, it also sounds sloppy, tired, and less inspired when compared to previous efforts. They've also throttled back the speed quite a bit, so we don't get those blistering aggressive sections that made the band so much fun anywhere near as much as we should. You still get some good tunes, like "Failure", "Patience", and the title track, and even a surprisingly doomy number with "Beer Break", which even manages to mix in that old Soothsayer speed that we love. The rest of the songs on here just fail to stand out, sounding like a band that's just going through the motions. 10-minute closer "NX2" is the only other exception, but while it certainly sounds like a more typical Soothsayer song, it goes to show that their sound really only works for 3-4-minute songs, and the excessive length means it wears out its welcome pretty quickly.
I don't know, this album has its moments, but it can't begin to match their previous releases. Maybe I was expecting too much, but it sounds like that after all this time, one of my old favorites are starting to lose their steam, and that really hurts me to say. Disappointing, to say the least.
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