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Review: SDI - Sign of the Wicked
Sign of the Wicked

Label: Scratchcore
Year released: 1988
Duration: 33:04
Tracks: 9
Genre: Thrash Metal

Rating: 3.75/5

Review online: January 10, 2021
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Readers Rating
Sign of the Wicked

Rated 4/5 (80%) (14 Votes)

I want to say I remember this SDI album from back when it came out in the late '80s, if for no other reason than the bad artwork. Sure, it came out on a really obscure label, but this WAS 1988 and the cover of the bassist carving the band's name into his shoulder with a razor blade just looked amateurish. Ah well, now I get a chance to actually hear SDI's music courtesy of this reissue by MDD Records. The band played an early speed metal that was out of place by 1988 but still was pretty cool, considering much of the music around that time was thrash or prog and was getting more and more complex and over produced. Sign of the Wicked has that charming, underpowered guitar tone that just can't be reproduced today, undisciplined but serviceable singing and a range of songwriting from excellent to trend-chasing. The album kicks off with the energetic and infectious "Comin Again" which combines lighting riffs and hooky vocal lines beautifully. There are other cuts like "Quickshot" that are sure to be bouncing around inside your head after the album has finished. There are also plenty of ok songs that don't leave much of an impression but aren't horrible. Being a reissue, this version has some bonus tracks including the epic "Prince on a White Horse," which starts like an '80s ballad before SDI mashes down the gas pedal for the middle part of the song, and the throwaway, hair metal inspired "Shut Up."

Authentically '80s because, hey, it is from 1988, Sign of the Wicked is an interesting release with some quality songs for fans of NWOBHM and early speed metal acts like Savage Grace, Dragonslayer, Nasty Savage, etc. I'm not going to call it a "lost classic," but it is worth seeking out if you get your kicks from '80s metal.

Additional Information

2020 reissue on MDD Records reviewed (13 tracks. Duration: 51:40)

Other related information on the site
Review: Sign of the Wicked (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
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