Assaulter - Boundless! (Metal Blade/Riot)

Aussie thrashers back for a second dose of blackened mayhem.
Release Date: 
14 Mar 2011 - 11:30pm

It would be a tragedy if Assaulter's second album, Boundless! went missing in the general hubbub of the proliforation of releases our lugs are subjected to these days, for there are surely thousands of pairs of ears out there well disposed to the band's brand of eighties-styled blackened Teutonic thrash lunacy that would lap this stuff up if only it could haul itself out of the mire and make itself known.

The problem may well be geographic; if Assaulter was indeed German, or even British or American, they'd already be out amongst it, playing the toilets of the old world like their lives depended on it. But they ain't - they're from around these antipodean parts, and it's up to people like us - you and me, brothers and sisters, the guardians of metal's flame on the interweb, to make sure that this album doesn't whither on the vine. Let's go to work...

In simple terms Assaulter are an old-school thrash band. They live somewhere between bands like Kreator and Destruction (and indeed I'd be so bold as to say that Boundless! knocks the last album from Schmeir and company neatly into a cocked high-top, oh yes I would) on the one hand, and, say, Canadian nutcases Razor on the other - they are that good. Energetic primitivism is the name of the game, though that primitivism is leavened with enough songwriting smarts and instrumental skills to keep things intereesting at all times. Indeed, during the album's midtime triumvirate of Into Submission, Slave to King and The Perpetual War you could be forgiven for thinking you'd stumbled across the work of metallic genii, such is the shining brilliance made extant on those three tracks. Elsewhere there isn't quite that level of assuredness on a consistent level, but blow me if as soon as the album's over you won't be thinking about going back to the start and doing it all over again.

Much has been made in some quarters of the fact that this is little less than an Australian metal supergroup - the presence of former members of Razor of Occam and Destroyer 666 lends credence of a sort to that claim- but really all that matters is that Boundless! is an absolutely first rate release.