Review DEATH ANGEL ‘The Bastard Tracks’

Death Angel was on the road in Europe together with Exodus and Testament when COVID 19 started to spread. Death Angel drummer Will Carroll was hit hard by the virus, including a 12-day coma. Fortunately, Carroll recovered and, in the meantime, can be the heartbeat for the Bay Area veterans again.

On May 22nd, this year, Carroll and Death Angel played a streaming event at Great American Music Hall, which was a home game and at the same time without any audience. Fans all over the world could join from home and in case you missed the event, here are ‘The Bastard Tracks’. The release is a live album, without audience, but performed live on stage and what you get with this release is the energetic essence of Death Angel, beyond the usual setlist tracks.

An acoustic guitar starts this live release and introduces with ‘Lord of Hate’ a song from the ‘Killing Season’ album, a track that hasn’t been played live since 2013. Going for a setlist that doesn’t reflect the usual was done by purpose and brings pearls of the Death Angel discography into the spotlight. One of them is ‘The Organization’ from the great ‘Act III’ album and at the same time name-giver for The Organization, the band, the released two longplayers during the ‘90s.

A song that hasn’t been played live for a decade is the furious ‘Why You Do This’ from ‘Frolic Through the Park’. It showcases the immense energy the band spread in the early days, and it is these songs that defined Death Angel and their sound.

Next to the mammoth riffs, the band was never shy of the acoustic guitar and the great ‘A Room With a View’ needs to be mentioned here. Although the song isn’t on the album it is ‘Faded Remains’ instead that showcases the calm moments of Death Angel in a good way. The acoustic intermezzo finds with ‘Volcano’ a continuation before a pounding beat introduces ‘Falling Off the Edge of the World’, a great interpretation of the Black Sabbath classic. Amazing in this context is the closeness of Mark Osegueda’s voice to the one of legendary Ronnie James Dio.

‘Alive and Screaming’, from the ‘Humanicide’ album marks the end of shows and live album. The song wasn’t played live earlier and is a good ending of a concert, that wouldn’t have happened without a pandemic. Streaming events are not the first choice for sure, but doing this kind of events with such an exciting setlist is for certainly a treat for fans of thrash metal.

Rating: 8 out of 10.

Tracklist:

  1. Lord Of Hate
  2. Where They Lay
  3. Why You Do This
  4. Fallen
  5. Absence Of Light
  6. The Organization
  7. Execution / Don’t Save Me
  8. Succubus
  9. It Can’t Be This
  10. Let The Pieces Fall
  11. Faded Remains
  12. Volcanic
  13. Falling Off The Edge Of The World
  14. Guilty Of Innocence
  15. Alive And Screaming

Label: Nuclear Blast

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date EU: November 26th, 2021

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