North Carolina's been in the news a whole lot lately for a scintillating array of bullshit reasons, but what the Tar Heel State lacks in logic, basic human freedoms, and sane political processes, it (sort of) makes up for in barbecue and extremely tight heavy metal. Suppressive Fire is one of the latest purveyors of the latter to really give me hope for the future American thrash metal. Instead of gazing at the stars like Vektor, at the polls like Iron Reagan, or towards the bar like Bat, this young quartet's eyes are fixed firmly on the glorious, bloody past.
As one might expect, the major theme propelling the band's new album is war, and all of its hellish trappings. Mixed and mastered by Toxic Holocaust's Joel Grind, Nature of War serves up ravenous black/thrash (with a heavy Teutonic emphasis on the thrash), nipping at the heels of the band's 2016 debut LP Bedlam. Suppressive Fire isn't just a one-trick warhorse, though; they expand on that speedy, noxious template just enough to flout orthodoxy without getting too weird (or too soft).
The satisfying chug and frantic leads on "Vesicant" and tasty melodic guitar noodling on tracks like the apocalyptic "Dreaded Bastards," and wickedly epic, knuckle-shredding album closer "Nuclear Dismemberment" show that there's more to these Raleigh heshers than their collection of Sodom records. Nature of War is old school enough for the old heads, and pushes the envelope enough to attract younger, more adventurous ears, too.
Drink in Matt Slime's horrifying cover art (inspired by a true story of starved wolves feasting on soldiers in WWI), and dig into our Nature of War stream below. Take note: the album's out January 13 via Lost Apparitions Records.
Kim Kelly is tired and red on Twitter.