|Review: Ketzer - Endzeit Metropolis|
Label: Iron Bonehead Productions
Year released: 2012
Genre: Thrash Metal
Review online: April 10, 2012
Reviewed by: Memnarch
Rated 3.8/5 (76%) (10 Votes)
This has certainly got to rank up there with one of my most anticipated albums of 2012. Endzeit Metropolis, the follow up to German thrashers Ketzer's debut album Satan's Boundaries Unchained finally gets released on Iron Bonehead. They came to my attention a few years back when I heard their name casually mentioned in the same breath as genre frontrunners Destroyer 666 and Desaster, so naturally I had to go and uncover what all the fuss was about. And when a name is thrown around like that in the same circle as legends such as those, you can only be on to a winner.
2012 really hasn't been a bad year so far for proper thrash, we've had Nekromantheon, Desaster and Aura Noir all having released albums already, and now we have Ketzer with an album which unquestionably cements their status right up there with the best of them. You'd almost be forgiven for thinking this was a new Destroyer 666 album if you didn't know any better as Endzeit Metropolis harbours that same epic saw-toothed ferocity their peers from down under are so effective at.
There's no respite from what can only be described as an infernal firestorm of ripping guitar work and lacerating vocals that'll pin you to the wall and leave you beaten, broken and bruised. When I say these guys can shred with the best of them, I really mean it. Take tracks like "A Requiem for Beauty" and its classic Destruction-esque surge or "Aesthetics and Ecstasy" and its neck-snapping rhythm, ruthless riffing and Infernal Destroyer's cruel rasp, they're a black/thrash aficionado's wet dream.
"He Who Stands Behind the Rows" is the real blackened gem of Endzeit Metropolis though, a monolithic display of this band's talent is showcased here as it approaches the ten minute mark; one of those tracks which could easily go toe to toe with those such as "Trialed by Fire" and "Teutonic Steel" , it contains the same underlying epic feel that'll tear your face to ribbons and then stamp on it for good measure. The only time to catch your breath whatsoever is in the short instrumental which splits the album in two, a brief minute and a half before you're tossed headlong back into the melee.
The guitar tone is sharp and metallic and sounds as if it was tempered in the fires of hell itself. The riffing is top notch and never sounds familiar or rehashed, and the solos scorchingly intricate. Desecrator's drumming is similarly brilliant, a perfect mix of precision and power. The vocals of Infernal Desecrator could be likened to those of the legendary Tom Angelripper, a sneering and bloodied throaty rasp, all coming together to paint scenes of a somewhat dystopic and collapsing cityscape under siege by hell's legions themselves.
Any other year this would have had no competition at all as my favourite thrash release, Ketzer's only problem in this regard is that Desaster just happened to release an even better album already this year. Bearing in mind we're only three months into 2012 its already shaping up to be a great year for vicious, old school thrash. Could decent thrash actually be threatening a comeback in place of the now fading ‘thrash revival'? I certainly hope so. Endzeit Metropolis is bursting with so much raw aggression and the musicianship it's unreal, pretty much essential listening for any self respecting fan of this style of metal.
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