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Review: Relentless Aggression - A Shadow of All Things Broken
Relentless Aggression
A Shadow of All Things Broken

Label: Independent
Year released: 2021
Duration: 37:10
Tracks: 10
Genre: Thrash Metal


Review online: June 9, 2021
Reviewed by: Micah.Ram
Readers' Rating
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Rated 3.79/5 (75.79%) (19 Votes)

A bludgeoning riff and driving beat pound from the speakers as the record starts. Hetfield-esque vocals and a possessed Araya "Angel of Death" intro-styled vocal are used over the texture. An interesting syncopated riff alternates with the driving starting section. If this is the way the rest of the album plays out, this is a genuine Thrash record to watch out for in 2021!

Well, in various pockets of the album a similar energy is found, but for the majority of Relentless Aggression's A Shadow of All Things Broken there is a different energy to be found within its ten tracks. The sound here feels a bit infused with a Punk sound and attitude, which may disappoint some who enjoyed the banger that was the first track, "Epitome of Resentment." However, this is not necessarily a reason to feel concerned if one is to give this album a few spins, as the material will most definitely grow on the listener despite not following expectations from the first track.

While some songs here are a bit uninteresting, such as "The Art of Self Destruction" and "Flawed," there are still some interesting riffs to be discovered within, highlighting the guitar department as an area that shines throughout the record. "Time to Die" is a punky Thrash Metal song which will likely be a hit or miss number due to the vocal style in the verse, but it does have a genuinely Thrash energy, as do "From Beyond" and "End of Religion" in some areas. All of these songs have some cool riffs, and on some occasions, fun solos such as the one at the end of "Time to Die," which is the closest to capturing the energy of the debut album sound of Slayer, with the exception of the vocals.

The ending track, "Miscreation," is a cool, slower cut which progressively becomes more and more distorted in sound. This constantly increasing distortion ramps up a maniacal tone which ends up sounding like a cyclone of chaotic noise. It washes away eventually to a very bare texture and sound-world which only features a clean guitar sound with agonizing vocal delivery. The ending tone of the album feels hopeless or desperate, which makes the cyclonic energy and distortion ramping feel purposeful in the first part of the song.

All in all, A Shadow of All Things Broken is a solid Thrash Metal album with a noticeable pinch of Punk energy, which will likely not be for everyone. However, there are plenty of highlight moments here to make this an album worthy of a few visits off and on. It is also interesting to see that this band originally formed in 1986 as Hell Awaits, later changing their name twice to become Relentless Aggression, with this being their first full-length album. After a mostly unproductive period of more than thirty years, the band are now showing signs of picking up steam, and this album is a great step in the right direction to poise Relentless Aggression for a bright future.

More about Relentless Aggression...
Review: A Shadow of All Things Broken (reviewed by Mjölnir)
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