“Savage, unrelenting, violent and furious

For such a laid-back nation, Australia certainly has its fair share of vicious thrash bands, and Assaulter is no exception.

With their second album they have their sound and style nailed and rip through forty minutes of furious thrash with no compromise to modern trends. Mainman Berserker spent a few years with Destroyer 666 and drummer Pete Hunt has hit the skins with the likes of Razor of Occam and DragonForce prototype DragonHeart so you know they know their stuff.

From the very beginning of “Entrance” you know what you’re getting here, and Assaulter delivers in spades: speedy old school thrash with an almost nasally, buzzing guitar tone and a dry, upfront drum mix. The opening two songs surge forward with a mid-paced rhythmic drive like Destruction, but on the next two the band turn a corner, leaving the thrash behind for some nice musical Mercyful Fate worship where the only concession to their previous sound is Berserker’s echoey, raspy vocal snarl. One of the criticisms I’ve had of Australian bands in this vein is their tendency to all sound like D666 or Gospel of the Horns so it was pleasing to find that Assaulter vary their basic style with unusually technical solos and the inclusion of subtleties like snatches of Eastern and ethnic melodies. Like the best thrash bands, Assaulter also know how to craft hooks, from choruses like the one is “Dying Day” that will get a room shouting to the relentless catchiness of the riffing in the likes of “Perpetual War” no serious headbanger could possibly resist. Boundless! gradually builds to the climactic closer “The Great Subterfuge”, where the band pulls all stops in an eight-minute hellstorm of atmospheric, epic, anti-Christian thrash.

is savage, unrelenting, violent and furious, like all good thrash should be.

1. Entrance
2. Outshine
3. Into Submission
4. Slave to King
5. The Perpetual War
6. Exalt the Master
7. Dying Day
8. The Grand Subterfuge