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Review: Raging Rob - Always the True Assassin
Raging Rob
Always the True Assassin

Label: Infected Blood Records
Year released: 2018
Duration: 52:00
Tracks: 12
Genre: Thrash Metal


Review online: June 5, 2020
Reviewed by: Luxi Lahtinen
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Rated 4/5 (80%) (2 Votes)

Robert Gonnella was the vocalist for German thrashers Assassin for quite some time, but he left some time in 2014, presumably due to creative differences. He had a band around that time in China called Raging Mob, but despite them being advertised on the Bandcamp page, this isn't the same band. Instead, this is a more recent project formed with ex-Assassin drummer Frank Nellen whose debut album, Always the True Assassin, makes it very clear who he is and where he came from. Possible egotism aside, this album serves up a particularly melodic slice of Thrash that includes both old-school and modern influences, both of which come together to create a muscular, ballsy sound that's not too far off from Bay Area bands like Exodus and especially Heathen. Songs like the riff-laden "Cancer" and the straightforward chest-pounder "Rise Against Failure" have everything you could want from a Thrash release, and the band does it with the conviction and professionalism you'd want them to. Of course, this album wouldn't be complete without the obligatory Assassin cover song, in this case "Fight (To Stop the Tyranny)" off of The Upcoming Terror and "Resolution 588" off of Interstellar Experience. Thankfully, they're actually improvements over the originals, and the cover of AC/DC's "Walk All Over You" benefits greatly from the Thrash treatment as well. This only had 500 physical copies made and no reissues at the time of writing, but if you want a lesson in Thrash that has ambition and passion to spare, then this is worth listening to.

More about Raging Rob...
Interview with vocalist Robert Gonnella on June 23, 2020 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
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