Diamond Plate Generation Why?

When the scene first started to develop, I was completely against the new wave of thrash movement. To me the bands were just blatantly ripping off the acts who gave birth to the thrash movement in the ’80s. I mean, if you want to listen to thrash, just listen to the originals right? But then, I quit being such a curmudgeon, loosened up, begin to explore the burgeoning movement and found that I actually quite enjoyed some of these bands. Evile (my personal favorite), Sylosis, Bonded By Blood and Havok are some examples of bands that are, in my opinion, doing the retro thrash style right. The latest entry into the movement is the Chicago area’s Diamond Plate who are all apparently not even old enough to buy a beer at the clubs they are playing in. Their youth explains a lot about the sound of their debut “Generation Why?”….it is enthusiastic and balls to the wall, but is missing that mystery ingredient that ties it all together to make it totally kick ass. The band’s nods to lesser known bands in the thrash cannon like Nuclear Assault are certainly welcome, but the album starts to sag in the middle and sound repetitive. Mercifully, business picks up again toward the end and closes out on a good note. Given the band’s age, their sins are certainly forgivable and given some serious touring, maturing and development as songwriters, then there is a great deal of potential here.

Grade: C+

Revocation “Chaos Of Forms”

Revocation’s Relapse debut “Existence Is Futile” was a dizzying tour de force of the thrash and death metal genres which yielded exciting and promising results. On their follow-up, “Chaos Of Forms”, the band hasn’t changed the formula much, but has gotten even more proficient as players and songwriters. David Davidson is a monster guitar player of the most fleet fingered order, but manages to avoid falling into the guitar wankery quagmire which helps to separate Revocation from many of their peers in the tech metal genre. There was a lot of chatter on the ‘ol internet about the fact that the band used a horn section and an organ on the track “The Watchers”, but honestly, if you aren’t paying close attention to the track and are just casually listening (ie. background music while writing record reviews), you would just think they had some crazy effects on the guitars creating those noises. That being said, let’s give kudos to Revocation for trying something different and experimenting with instruments not traditionally associated with the metal genre (well, the horns at least, organs certainly aren’t a stranger). So, if you like your thrash metal chocolate mixed with your death metal peanut butter or are simply a fan of superb musicianship, then you need to let the 12 tracks on “Chaos Of Forms” enter your eardrums ASAP.

Grade: A

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