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Review: Necrophagia (LA) - It Began with a Twisted Dream...
Necrophagia (LA)
It Began with a Twisted Dream...

Label: Independent
Year released: 1987
Duration: 14:54
Tracks: 3
Genre: Thrash Metal


Review online: July 15, 2021
Reviewed by: Luxi Lahtinen
Readers' Rating
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Rated 5/5 (100%) (8 Votes)

In my growing quest to fill in every gap this site has, I'm revisiting an old favorite from my younger days, one that isn't as well known as it should be if I have anything to say about it. No, this isn't that Necrophagia, these guys here hailed from L.A. around the same time, releasing some demos and even planning on releasing their debut full-length, Bleeding Incubus, on Alchemy Records. Sadly, the label went bankrupt and the album never materialized, leading the band to breaking up before they could properly take the underground by storm as one of the greatest Thrash bands ever. I know that's a big claim, but if you take one listen to It Began with a Twisted Dream..., you'll know I'm absolutely right.

Necrophagia were all about the dark, hateful, riff-laden vein of Thrash pioneered by the likes of Slayer and especially Dark Angel, and I think they sail by any possible criticism of being unoriginal by being better at it than any other band out there. From Jerry Battle's guitar work to Piercy's drumming to Eddie Santiago's vocals and bass playing, every aspect of this release is meant to unleash a Thrash assault that was as evil and brutal as you could get, and even 34 years later it still sounds like it came fresh out of hell. Album opener "Bone Cancer" sets the mood with a creepy intro backing part of a speech given by Hitler before going full throttle into piercing, wicked, uncompromising Thrash that was more epic than either of their inspirations ever bothered with. Things don't slow down with "Burning Galleries", which is basically more of the last song while holding some of the most violent guitar work on the album. All of this leads up to the brilliant album closer "Deny the Cross", a hellacious monster of a song that'll make you want more from this band, only to realize your only option is to play this demo again and again like I have for decades.

Put simply, this is one of the best Thrash demos of the '80s, and therefore some of the best Thrash period. Their tragedy is a common one in the underground, as many bands broke up without a full-length to their names for a variety of reasons, but the fact these guys could have very easily been counted among the elites of the Thrash scene if they were given the chance makes it all the more tragic to me. Still, they left one black pearl of evil that I'll cherish until I'm either deaf or dead, and anyone who wants to know what peak Thrash sounds like will do the same after giving this one countless listens like I have. A masterclass in Thrash.

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