|Review: Charged - In Vice|
Label: Euros Records
Year released: 1989
Genre: Thrash Metal
Review online: April 5, 2021
Reviewed by: Luxi Lahtinen
Rated 4/5 (80%) (2 Votes)
While Finland is best known for its Death Metal in the '90s, there was a brief period between 1985 and 1990 where Thrash reigned supreme in our underground scene. Bands like A.R.G., Stone, Airdash, Oppression, Protected Illusion, Necromancer, National Napalm Syndicate, and Terrific Verdict were the leaders of this movement, though many of them never made it past the demo stage and split without recording a single album. Charged were one of the lucky few that were able to get a full-length made, but it was barely promoted and the band vanished shortly after its release. That's a damn shame, because while this isn't up there with the classic acts, In Vice is a damn fine album in its own right.
That's not to say this was particularly groundbreaking or original. Nope, this is just some fast and aggressive Thrash akin to the likes of Destruction, Vio-lence, and Sacrifice with plenty of riffs and energy to spare. Guitarist Oskari Kymäläinen was no slouch when it came to churning out and endless wall of badass riffs, vocalist Juha Kekkinen had a punky rasp that could get a bit monotonous, but overall kept pace with the intensity of the rest of the band, and the production is as rough as you'd expect a DIY job in the '80s, but that just adds to the underground charm as far as I'm concerned. Highlights like "Anti-Christ Never Rests", "Inquisition", and "Surprise Kills" will get your head banging hard enough to make your hairdresser quit the next time they see you, and they even show a bit of humor on "The Ballad of S.O.D.", which is a tongue-in-cheek jab at S.O.D.'s style that references their infamous "The Ballad of Jimi Hendrix" and lasts all of six seconds.
Overall, In Vice isn't going to change your perspective on how Thrash is done, but it's a solid example of what the Thrash scene in Finland looked like in its glory days. This never got the reissue it deserves, so good luck getting a physical copy, but you can find it online easily enough, and it's worth the listen. A forgotten gem that deserves more attention than it gets.
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