Copyright (c) 2007-2017 THE THRASH METAL GUIDE


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J.B.O. (GERMANY)

Groovy post-thrash meets crossover, plus a lot of funky and alternative moments added. This is a jokey take on the style, and can only be loosely labelled as thrash, mixing a truckful of influences into pretty short (1-2min) tracks without too many musical merits.

"Happy Metal Thunder" is another joke which this time pulls out all the headbanging stops on vigorous pieces, like "Long Live Metallica", which music-wise is hardly a tribute to the Americans being a happy speed/thrashy merry-go-round with the vocals trying to imitate James Hetfield at times, and doing a good job; watch out for the great balladic break in the middle which is a stylish nod to both "Orion" and "Sanitarium". Later on one will encounter an optimistic crossover take on Pink Floyd's "Another Brick In The Wall", only faithful to the Brits' hit in the middle, the rest much faster with a carefree, punky attitude. Make sure not to miss the excellent cover of Motorhead's "Ace Of Spades", by far the most indigenous attempt at this hit, done entirely balladic with acoustic guitars and vocals which may have been provided by Lemmy himself: one can hardly imagine a better impersonation of the British rock legend. "Raining Blood" has no relations to Slayer, but is a hilarious version of Gary Halliwell's (former Spice Girls) "Raining Men"; one can't help but start laughing at the funny lyrics at some point. The only more faithful rendition is the one of The Rolling Stones' "Angie" at the end, at least music-wise, since the singer slubbers in a silly, drunken way, apparently making fun of Mick Jagger. The rest is a varied mix of groovy, industrial pieces and pure heavy metal happinesses (see, there are a lot of "happy" moments here!), but still, the entertainig value of this effort is fairly big.

Killeralbum Full-Length, 2011
Happy Metal Thunder Full-Length, 2011

J.I.P. (CZECH)

Based on the "New Pigs on the Rocks" demo, this act produce some of the most brutal sounds to come out of Europe during the early-90's. This is ultra-aggressive grindy thrash/death which is pretty much violent, albeit remotely sensible, bash without many musical merits, served with a messy sound and short, badly constructed, pieces. The vocalist merges with the musical chaos his semi-declamatory antics barely audible at times. Not for the faint of heart...

Intensive Care Unit Demo, 1990
To Be or Not to Be Demo, 1990
New Pigs on the Rocks Demo, 1991
This Is Not a Trick-This Is a Shark! This Is Not a Joke-This Is J.I.P! Demo, 1992

J.T.RIPPER (GERMANY)

This is pure Germanic old school speed/thrash quite reminiscent of early Iron Angel and the Portuguese Alastor, also bringing to mind Rigor Mortis on the more aggressive sections ("Seven Comandments"). There's certain dissipated death/black metal-ish atmosphere present as well, probably coming from the harsh throaty vocals. The band play on with the utmost speed possible seldom trying something more complex (the curious quasi-progressiver "Darkest Minds"; the excellent serpentine closer "Buried Alive"); but there's no need for such "distractions" since the no-bars-held delivery suits them just fine providing plenty of furious headbanging moments.

Depraved Echoes and Terrifying Horrors Full-Length, 2015

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JACKDEVIL (BRAZIL)

Based on the full-length debut, this band specialize in classic speed/thrash crossing "Kill'Em All" with a more fulfilled speed metal assault ala Attacker and Liege Lord. The cross works since the guys seldom let the speed drop although "Thrash Demons Attack" is more of a tribute to the German speed metal school than a full-fledged thrash piece. More variety comes with the pounding "Killing Razors" before "Insane Speed Metal" "speeds insanely" recalling the Canadian heroes Exciter who are also the main topic on the closing "Under The Metal Command". The singer isn't bad with his attached shouty semi-clean tember which he doesn't risk, but keeps levelled throughout.
“Evil Strikes Again” is another retro speed/thrashing winner the band shooting a “bullet” after “bullet” in a quick succession the music more on the melodic side (“Satan's Rite”) “Nightcrawler” being the carefree laid-back deviation sustained in a rockish manner with a great bass bottom. “Death by Red Lights” near the end unleashes more hard-hitting thrash as opposed to the dominant speed metal flavour the latter again recalling Exciter above all.

Faster Than Evil EP, 2013
Unholy Sacrifice Full-length, 2014
Evil Strikes Again Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

JACKHAMMER (BRAZIL)

A capable new act playing energetic old school speed/thrash ala Blessed Death and early Whiplash; the vocals are bery high to the point of screaming, again pretty much in the vein of the two aforementioned acts, and the guitars have this playful crossover edge at times. The music will be by allmeans entertaining to the majority of the fans being fast: check out the speed metal worship "Speed Metal Crusher" which adds great classical leads ala Kai Hansen. The delivery is seldom "broken" by more direct hardcore-laced tracks ("Fight or Die Now"), but after that one the sound gets a bit more serious, with longer compositions, although the approach doesn't change drastically being speedy all the way, except for the heavy pounding "Red Light Murder", which also speed/thrashes intensely at the end. The closing "Death Factory" is an entertaining 7.5-min opus which offers merry speed metal in the 90's fashion "graced" by brutal grinding outbreaks in the beginning and the end.

Hard to be alive Full-length, 2009

Official Site

JACKNIFE(USA)

Swedish thrash/death metal made in the USA; the music has the typical for the style melodic guitar work, but at times introduces some heavy, groovy moments, too. "End Man" is a less-than-2-min wonder of some brilliant technical thrash. The rest is less striking sticking to the well established trends.

Moment of Reckoning full-length, 2006

Official Site

JACKSTRAW (ITALY)

A 3-songer with a girl on both bass and behind the mike; she is helped by a brutal death metal growler at times, but the latter should really be left aside for the future: the catchy crossover tone of the music by no means suits him. This is playful soft power/post-thrashy stuff with a dance potential finished with the good soulful ballad "Tutto Crolla".

False Smile Demo, 2012

Official Site

JACOBS MOOR (AUSTRIA)

This Austrian outfit indulge in modern power/thrash served on a semi-technical, also epic, base. The guitar work is mostly mid-tempo and crunchy exceptions to the rule inevitably springing up: the hard-hitting speedster "The Truth", the classic reminder "New Tomorrow" which also provides a nice sing-along chorus. The longer cuts ("Last Remaining Light") border on the progressive including the final "Final Sound" which is 8-min of some inspired more complicated thrashing with a cool laid-back interlude. The vocalist is a cool addition with his warm emotional clean tember. Some of the musicians also have another band, the progressive metal formation Glass Moon.

All That Starts Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

JAGANNATH (HOLLAND)

The style on the first demo is heavy, roughly produced thrash with some very fast moments, reminding of the Americans Hallows Eve. When the guys don't aim at the very fast, chaotic play, they actually produce some cool stomping tracks: "Into The City's Madness", but the more aggressive moments are not to be ignored, either: the smashing little thrasher "Flight Of The Goblin", and the stylish fusion of intense thrashing and some epic metal "Jagannath".

The second demo is a big improvement over the first one, going for a more technical style enriched with some genuine slower, doomy parts. "Save the Days" combines the unbridled aggression of the debut demo with some nice technical sections. "Crionic Substance" is a speed/thrash mix with some good leads. "Innocent Victims" thrashes non-stop for about 4-min followed by another 4-min, but of a different nature: a seamless blend of speed and technicality ("The Lunacy Of Intelligence"). But even this sounds just like a rehearsal for the technical masterpiece "Vendetta Gentilitzia": a shredfest at its finest. "Last Meal!!" is a merciless ball of aggression, closed by some country joke tunes, probably taken from some drunken metal party.

Demo I Demo, 1988
Crionic Substance Demo, 1989

JAILOR (BRAZIL)

Even on a saturated scene like the Brazilian one, these guys will easily stick out, simply because this is one of the better debuts to come out of there in years. Technical thrash of the heavier type with fast, Slayer-esque parts is what's on offer here. The guitar work is particularly good, and will also remind you of Death, ably supported by a great heavy bass-bottom. The music at times gets quite fast and aggressive, acquiring slight shade of death metal ("Timeline of Massacre", the second part of "Jailor"), and this is where the guys put more effort, coming with a really impressive performance, mainly by the guitarists again; their swirling technical hooks will keep you on the alert the whole time. The headbangers will not be disappointed, either: more direct, shorter Slayer-esque numbers are also here: "Corpus Christ", but again with a certain technical edge. Technical masterpieces like "Deaf Lords" and "Necropolis" would be hard to match even by the most experienced practitioners of the genre- both songs are true gems, the highlights of the album. The vocals are the only flaw, being quite shouty with an unpleasant hardcore edge; they sound appropriate, though, when the guy tries to scream ala Tom Araya (remember "Angel of Death").
"Stats of Tragedy": 10 years' absense is a luxury which even Metallica wouldn't think of affording, but the good news is that the Jailors are here again, and their heavy stylish histrionics are on full display starting from the very opener "Human Unbeing", a prime example of lashing volcanity which grows into something faster on "Stats of Tragedy", before "Throne of Devil" nicely recalls mid-period Death in a stealthy, unobtrusive way the latter another inspired headbanger. The Death-y leanings stay around for "Merciless Punishment" which is progressive thrash with more dramatic death metal-ish accumulations. "Jesus Crisis" is another less ordinary lasher with progressive arrangements, and "The Need of Perpetual Conflict" is both more moderate and more technical speeding up towards the end. "Ephemeral Property" brings the shadow of Death looming even closer over the album, all in a good way, mind you, with its intelligent technicality, and the final "Six Six Sickness" is pure death metal madness again with a hefty technical edge. The more individualistic delivery from the debut has been sacrificed for the sake of vigilant guidance by one of the veterans on the scene, and although Death are probably the most imitated act right now, the Brazilians can be easily considered one of the best practitioners from this emulation wave.

Evil Corrupts full-length, 2005
Stats of Tragedy Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

JAMES MURPHY (USA)

This legendary guitar wizard has graced with his presence many celebrated acts from the metal scene (Agent Steel, Obituary, Testament, Death, Cancer, etc.). In-between his busy schedule he has found some time to release two albums under his name in the 90's. Music-wise this is progressive/technical thrash with a modern flavour (but no grooves). The style is not flamboyant ala Yngwie Malmsteen, nor is it very aggressive in the vein of Toby Knapp, but makes for an interesting listen mixing both eclectic, offbeat, more progressively-laced sections with some impressive hard-hitting straight ones. On the songs (not all pieces are instrumentals) you can hear Chuck Billy, Devin Townsend, John West; Steve Digiorgio on bass, too. Murphy is still fighting brain cancer which befell him 5 years ago, and our hopes (and prayers) are that this metal hero will recover completely very soon to carry on with his contribution to the metal field.

Convergence Full-LenGTH, 1996
Feeding The Machine Full-Length, 1999

Official Site

JARABE DE PLOMO (SPAIN)

Thrashcore done with a crusty attitude; it's dynamic, one-dimensional and party-like. The singer is a rough drunken semi-reciter who adds up to the uplifting mood. One would be sruprised to find out that exactly the same musicans are behind the much more serious progressive death metal project Undefined.

Jarabe de Plomo Full-Length, 2011

Official Site

JARAKILLERS (BRAZIL)

A young Brazilian outfit who indulge in abrasive modern thrash with frequent classic leanings. The fuzzy edge of the guitars may annoy to an extent, but the dynamics is admirable the latter nicely boosted by the more death metal-oriented semi-technicaller "Julius Cezar". Elsewhere we have the "evil" stomper "Evil Prayer", the speed/thrashing roller-coaster "The Mushroom Cloud of Death, the pessimistic doomster "Dorothy Stang", and the short deathy closer "Terror Green Hell". The vocalist is a scary deathy shouter often stifled by the noisy guitar sound.

Macabres Tales of Dark River Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

JARHEAD (CANADA)

Based on "Beautiful Delusion", these guys offer cleverly-concocted modern post-thrash which tries to run away from the modern cliches with a string of more technical tracks, but the style remains within the predictable parametres the band jamming in a more carefree manner more often than the technical side of music would allow. There are several catchy melodic hooks to be caught as well (check out the closer "Anti-Prostrate", among other "niceties") those contrasting with the gruff death metal-ish vocals.
The debut starts well with the energetic "Karma Striking Back", but later on offers just listless radio-friendly power/post-thrash with less overt hardcore overtones on the very few more dynamic passages. The band have found a way to produce more meaningful music three years later on the sophomore album.

Image of Insanity Full-length, 2009
Beautiful Delusion Full-length, 2012

Official Site

JAWBONE (GERMANY)

Merry uplifting modern, but fairly derivative, post-thrash topped by brutal shouty death metal vocals; "Stepphuhn" is a really cool heavy ballad, and "Yellow Sirens" is a more hard-hitting shredder, but "Floating Impact" on the other hand is just a clumsy 7.5-min doomster, not to mention the stupid closing 6-min of ambient non-sense... Skippable by any standards.

Blow Me Blind Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

JAWW (CANADA)

Based on the full-length: look no further than the typical for the time groovy post-thrash, here brought with a strong doze of industrial. Expect very heavy guitars without a big variety in-between, mid to doomy tempos, a few hardcore outbursts, and angry brutal semi-death vocals. Some of the band members have earlier tried their hands on some thrash/death metal under the name Catharsis.

Southbound Full-length, 1997
Lifetimebomb EP, 2000

JECHANE (POLAND)

This Polish trio play modern thrash which clings more towards the melodic side regardless of the brutal shouty, death metal vocals "roaming" within. The band settle for the mid-pace from the get-go, and seldom break the morose atmosphere instilled. "Metro" is a nice instrumental showing a more ambitious aspect of the band's musicianship, but generally this is a not very engaging listen.

War in Your Head Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

JEFF HANNEMAN PROJECT (USA)

The name should tell you a lot: this is a side project for the Slayer guitarist Jeff Hanneman, but here he does just a decent job; this is energetic, but not very aggressive thrash which doesn't sound exactly like Slayer, and is full of touches like slow atmospheric, even semi-balladic sections, which are not quite necessary and ruin the sharp guitar sound. The bass is almost non-existent making me wonder whether it wasn't only Hanneman and a session drummer having recorded this.

Demo Demo, 1986

JELONEK (POLAND)

Based on "Revenge": this act is named after Michal Jelonek, the violinist who was previously a singer for the Polish power/thrash metal veterans Hunter. The violin-infused style of the Finns Apocaliptica is brought up with a strong presence of edgy, crunchy rhythms resulting in an interesting, dramatic "duel" with a strong thrashy flavour although there aren't too many fast moments; still, fans of the technical and the chaotic will be delighted to hear demented shredders like "Mad Toad" and the so often-cited "Sabre Dance" (Mekong Delta, Skyclad, etc.) by Aram Hachaturian. For the more romantically-inclined there is the excellent ballad "Old Sorrow", but generally this is intense stuff with Jelonek, of course, playing the major role with his proficient pyrotechnics.

Jelonek Full-length, 2007
Revenge Full-length, 2011

Official Site

JENNER (SERBIA)

An all-female act from Belgrade gives us high-charged classic speed/thrash which "winks" at the German movement ("Hear The Thunder Roar") with echoes of Angel Dust and Paradox. "Demon's Call" is a smashing speed/thrasher with furious technical riffs, a masterpiec ethat will even impress Vektor and Hellfire. "The Heath Is Coming Again" is another winner with its bouncy lively guitars, and "On The Judgement Day" is a more aggressive shredder moshing high'n low superseded by the equally as ferocious "How Deep Is Your Greed". "Silent Killer" throws another portion of fiery riffage which is more on the technical side showing the girls' more proficient side to a great effect. "Opened (On The Table)" is an awesome closer the girls unleashing a whirlwind of ripping vitriolic guitars to produce speed/thrash at its uncompromising best with a few more intricate arrangements. This is a sheer no-brainer which gives all-female metal and Serbian metal an enormous boost.

To Live Is to Suffer Full-length, 2017

Official Site

JENSKAYA BOLEZN (RUSSIA)

4 girls from Moscow have decided to play some thrash/crossover to pass the time with the prime intention to be a warm-up band of E.S.T. Not bad as a whole with the girls managing to come close to the energetic delivery of Detente's "Recognize no Authority" although the vocals here are much more melodic. The music is mid to up-tempo, but the guitar work is on a low, not very professional level although from a riff-point-of-view there is something to be heard, completely overshadowing the short amateurish leads.

1-Aya Ledi V SSSR Demo, 1990

JERK (SWITZERLAND)

A blend of heavy groovy post-thrash and thrash/crossover; the modern trends predominate, with the forceful aggressive semi-death metal vocals being the highlight.

Scream Against Walls Full-length, 1995

JERKSTORE (DENMARK)

Based on "Blood On Canvas", this is modern groovy thrash of the more melodic type, at times recalling Monster Magnet. The music is mid-tempo to slow-ish, acquiring some stoner/doom character as well.

Anti-Jukebox Full-Length, 1999
Hard Words Softly Spoken Full-Length, 2000
Blood On Canvas Full-Length, 2004
The Dream Society Full-Length, 2006

Official Site

JERSEY DOGS (USA)

Judging by the band name and the full-length album title, you might expect this to be some kind of a joke; but it's not because these guys know how to play thrash; and this shouldn't be a surprise, having in mind that these are the same musicians who were responsible for the explosive masterpiece "Second Coming" under the name Attacker less than a year earlier, and while everyone was expecting an amazing follow-up to this album, here came an entirely new act, with more concentration on the up-and-coming thrash. The sound is heavy, with a very strong presence of the bass section, bringing Testament and Metallica to mind, among other Bay-Area bands. There is a joke song which will remind you of Mordred with its funky passages: "Greasy Funk Chicken" (an obvios allusion to KFC).

Don't Worry, Get Angry! EP, 1989
Thrash Ranch Full-Length, 1990

JESTER'S FUNERAL (GERMANY)

A cool power/thrash metal act of both the modern and classic school with dark overtones; "Quick Silver Light" is a nice proficient take on the Black Album sound mixed with "remnants" from the 80's American power/thrash metal heritage. The guys move in a heavy mid-pace with crunchy guitars and good mid-ranged clean vocal performance not far from James Hetfield which takes a slight alternative edge on the balladic passages ("Traveller"). "Time Bomb" is a cool more intense galloping thrasher partly cancelled by the semi-balladic/semi-doomy "Brontosaurus 666". The speedy surprises are not over yet, and here comes another more energetic number: "Quick Silver Light", to bang the head. Finally a full-blooded ballad arrives: "To Fall Asleep", a good achievement in the field with very nice emotional vocal performance. Edgier more riffy thrash of the steam-roller type comes crushing on "Private Demon" and "Where Dark Deep Waters Flow", but "Astrocry" speeds up once again scoring high in the lead department. The final "Dorian" adds an interesting keyboard background and shifts away from the dominant approach into epic/folk waters, a slighlty underwhelming exit from this very good album which will also remind you of early Brainstorm and another German act of more recent times: Psychotron.

"Fragments of an Exploded Heart" would be quite a disappointment being strictly for the modern metal lovers coming with a more abrasive guitar sound well shown on the opening "The Exploded Heart" which is an energetic more modern-sounding power/thrasher with gruff death metal vocals added to the main ones which are exactly the same as the ones on the previous efforts. Then follows a string of just average modern numbers with a lot of groove, a "trap" which the guys have avoided so well before, a situation saved by the much faster "Morons at the Speed of Light" which, despite its "moronic" title, is a fast crusher "flirting" with a couple of classical motives in a good lead/classic "duel" manner. The rest goes back to the boring trite patterns failing to produce another highlight, consequently pulling this album seriously down at a time when classic metal was quite strong seeing the guys moving quite a bit away from thrash, and even power, metal.

Labyrinth Full-length, 1999
Quick Silver Light Full-length, 2000
Shifting: Skywards Full-length, 2003
Fragments of an Exploded Heart Full-length, 2006

My Space

JESTER BEAST (ITALY)

This band manage to come up with an original sound on their only album: this is somewhat technical thrash with chaotic arrangements and a hectic delivery, but everything comes in place at the end as the guys try to keep balance between the more aggressive and the more experimental tracks some of which are quite stylish with a strong Voivod flavour ("Illogical Theocracy"). On the other extreme we have the grindcore outburst "D.U.F." which later comes up with some really cool guitar lines. The music is quite intense most of the time and would probably satisfy even the most aggressively-inclined thrash/proto-death metal fans as well; this is well worth your attention.
The Intalian underground scene has been on fire lately, and one has no choice but to welcome these talents who only released one album before disappearing without a trace. But here they are again with this 4-track EP which is a very stylish Voivod-worship the engaging progressive opener "Lost in Space" bringing back sweet memories of "Killing Technology". The production is strictly modern and the sterile riffage on the next "Cyrus Cylindar" tells a more modern story this cut being a cool puzzling shredder. "Kolkata Bazar" is more light-hearted and carefree providing more dynamic faster-paced guitars which turn to less immediate spacey landscapes in the 2nd half. The final "The Ultimate Pilgrimage" is a more laid-back progressive composition recalling later-period Depressive Age promising a lot from the future full-length also seeing an act with a vision ready to complete a journey started a long time ago.

Poetical Freakscam Full-Length, 1991
The Infinite Jest EP, 2012

Official Site

JESTERS OF CHAOS (USA)

Energetic thrash/crossover with some jolly punk-ish overtones, not miles away from D.R.I. or early Rumble Militia on the more melodic parts.

Demo Demo, 1988

JESUS CHRIST (CANADA)

Run-of-the-mill groovy post-thrash which pulls it out when going for pure doom ("Broken") or for the very original and highly unusual choice for a cover (joking, guys, this is the 1000th take on the Motorhead hit "Ace of Spades").

Jesus Christ Full-length, 1994

JESUS CHRYSLER SUPERSKUNK (GERMANY)

This band boast the presence of two ex-Destruction members and one ex-Necronomicon member. So is this a feast for the 80's German thrash metal fans? Well, yes and no. This is actually enjoyable music which mixes stoner/doom, classic heavy metal, and, of course, a huge doze of thrash. The thrash riffing goes more into Slayer, Devastation-territory, that is, it's quite aggressive and combined with the stomping doomy riffs makes up for an intense and interesting listen. The guys are not "strangers" to more technical guitar work as well as to the so common groovy sections in the Pantera-vein.

The Loudest No! Full-length, 2005

Official Site

JESUS FREAKS (USA)

Based on the EP, this is Anthrax-influenced thrash metal with modern elements and some tasteless synthesized vocals used at times. The guys on some tracks manage to come up with an intense, more aggresive than Anthrax sound ("Die With Me"), but pointless groovy numbers, like the 8-min "Hypocrite", pull the impression more on the negative side. Reportedly their full-length belongs entirely to the modern groovy thrash arena.

Socially Unacceptable EP, 1993
Jesus Freaks Full-Length, 1996

My Space

JESUSMARTYR (ARGENTINA)

This is a nod to the 90's scene: cool aggro-thrash not too far from Machine Head's "Burn My Eyes", or Pantera's "Vulgar Display of Power"; you will hear sharp, heavy riffs aplenty here, and the tempo is quite energetic. As this style is gradually falling into oblivion, perhaps it wouldn't be too bad to have a few acts like this around to remind us of the good, not old times, especially if they remind us in such a good way.

Sudamerican Porno Full-length, 1998
Sudamerican Porno Split, 2003
The JesusMartyr Full-length, 2005
The Black Waters Full-length, 2007

My Space

JIM JONES AND THE KOOL-ADE KIDS (USA)

The full-length: a very obscure, but worthy release of moody, doomy thrash similar to early Celtic Frost, Venom and Dream Death. This is slightly monotonous music, but delivers the goods on all counts, especially with some brutal, fast tracks thrown in: "Manufactured Christ" and "Attack Position", which go straight into Possessed and Slaughter territory, and show the other side of this very interesting band. The singer does a very good job, sounding like a blend between Cronos and Tom G. Warrior. The songs are generally short, within the 3-min range, but "Odium Bloom" will catch you completely unprepared with its monstrous, 9-min length of pure, unadulterated doom, which would make even masters of the genre like Saint Vitus cringe with envy.
The demo offers the same stuff, mid-paced sinister music ala Celtic Frost and Dream Death, again providing something for the doom metal fans: "Indisposition" and "How I Melt", which are more dynamic than "Odium Bloom" and more melodic and shorter. "Understanding The Cut", which follows immediately, is brutal thrash/proto-death, but this is the only more aggressive surprise.

Trust Me Full-length, 1986
Contrafusion Demo, 1988

JINX (RUSSIA)

Based on "Metal Invaders", this band offers heavy power/thrash mixing more recent Annihilator riffs with the more stomping approach of acts like Flotsam & Jetsam and The Germans Armistice. Some faster tracks are also around: "First Born Evil", but the heavy parts are there, too. The intensity is gone on a couple of softer, longer progressive attempts: "Voices From The Past", "Eternal Way Of Victory" which add keyboards, balladic sections, and more, straying quite far from the thrash formula. The singer is not very suitable with his angry hardcore delivery, very seldom changing the pitch.

"Jedem Das Seine" is a better offering the guys thrashing with more confidence keeping the melodic hooks flowing effortlessly along with a few odd technical passages ("Tample On The Broken Bones"). "Ancient Treasure" is a sure-handed headbanger, but the other material is not as hard-hitting concentrating more on the melody. Towards the end things become more interesting, first with the entertaining speed/thrashing shredder "L.O.D", then with the cool cover version of Carcass' "Polarized" which is solely ruined by the bad death metal vocals. Some death metal intensity comes served as a finishing touch on the closer "Frozen Heart".

Voices From The Past Full-length, 2003
Metal Invaders Full-length, 2008
Jedem Das Seine Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

JOBCRUSHER (HOLLAND)

Modern thrash mixed with hard, and even grindcore; fast brutal stuff performed with short 1-2min tracks and simplistic basic riffs which seldom develop beyond the spontaneous outburst.

From the Cradle...To The Fucking Grave! Full-length, 2007

Official Site

JOE THRASHER (CANADA)

There's no Joe in the band's line-up, which consists of 3 guys who pull out cool speed/thrash not far from their compatriots Exciter, which doesn't promise a lot with the opener "Speed Kills", which has nothing to do with speed, but is a clumsy heavy-handed power metaller. Soon, however, the guys start scoring high in both departments: check out the intense thrashing piece "Waking the Dead", or the pure speed metal delight "Metal Forces". "Riot" goes over the top, but in a very good way, being a merciless short thrasher, after which comes a time for a rest, on the slower power/thrash number "Marching". More energetic thrashing on the remaining 3 songs the closing "Assassin of Lies" even grinding at the end. The singer may be an acquired taste with his characteristic barking tember reminiscent of Steve Souza (Exodus, Tenet).

"Cries of War" is a faithful tribute to the Bay-Area (Exodus, above all) spiced with the more carefree attitude of the crossover arena ("Homicide", "Leatherhead", the closing speed metal hymn "Canadian Metal"). The band spare no energy, playing in up-tempo throughout with a pinch of melody (the light-hearted power/speedster "Out for Blood"; the longer, progressive-tinged "We Are the Ones") added. The vocalist preserves his barking delivery which emits both emotion and aggression at the appropriate time.
The "Speed Kills" EP is 3 songs of soft rock-ish stuff which is not very "speedy" and will definitely not "kill" you. The title-track is a laid-back heavy rocker, but "Waking The Dead" justifies the title with more intense thrashy riffage, before the EP closes in the ultimate frolic rock'n roll fashion with the energetic cover of Johnny Cash's "Folsom Prison Metal". The singer is appropriate all over, his inebriate mean-ish tember fitting all musical nuances.

Speed Kills EP 2008
Metal Forces Full-length, 2009
Cries of War Full-length, 2011

Official Site

JOEL GRIND (USA)

The man is obviously tireless since his involvement in half of the existing acts around at the moment doesn't keep him from trying out something more under his own name where he takes care of everything (vocals, instruments, etc.). Fans of his main band Toxic Holocaust would love the stuff on offer here since this is a pretty similar combination of black, speed and thrash in this case served with more melody not far from Motorhead and Tank so don't expect too much aggression except on the couple of more intense Bathory-sque moments: "Cross Damnation", the macabre mid-pacer "Black Order" which will also remind of Venom's heydays. "The Eternal One" could be considered a digression being a funeral doomster with a sinister creepy main theme, an effective hypnotizer which may be viewed as the highlight on this derivative, but enjoyable tribute to all things old school.

The Yellowgoat Sessions Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

JOHN CONNELLY THEORY (USA)

This album appeared at the same year when "Out of Order" (Nuclear Assault) came out, and arguably added up to the confusion which "Out of Order" produced, although with regards to the oncoming new trends in metal, this is quite an achievement. Here John Connelly takes a turn towards a more modern sound, and from a poineering point-of-view this work scores high being one of the first releases to epitomize the post-thrash sound which later swept the 90's. Connelly here is helped by Brent McCarty- the Brutal Truth guitarist, one of Dan Lilker's most faithful associates. The music is mild, jumpy and not very ordinary to that time's standards. The staple high-pitched vocals are here, and are quite good, especially on the balladic moments which are more than just a few ("Joe's Tune", "In Memory", "Hardwire"). There is one cool attempt at technical post-thrash: "Harlan's Nightmare", but the music is strictly for fans of the modern 90's trends: The Black Album, later-period Anthrax, Flotsam & Jetsam, etc.

Back to Basics Full-length, 1991

JOHN NORMAN COLLINS (USA)

This is a mixed bag containing thrash, death metal, hardcore and a bit of traditional hard'n heavy, all this topped by unpleasant death metal vocals. The guitars are very noisy, and surprisingly produce better results on the shorter more aggressive tracks: the hardcore madness "Slim Fast"; the death metal fury "The Arrogant".

JNC - Demo Demo, 1998

JOHNNY RENSHUSLOKKEN (NORWAY)

Fairly good modern technical/progressive thrash, an all-instrumental offering, which starts with the heavy semi-ballad "Dark Matter, Pt. 1" the latter oozing a lot of atmosphere before "The Big Bang" starts "banging" the head with schizophrenic, swirling guitars graced by a fine balladic ending. "Nebula" is beautiful dissonant abstractisms, and "The Neutron Star" is an imposing progressive doom/thrashy saga. Sterile robotic riffage will engulf you on "Exoplanet" at the beginning, but this is a funky atmospheric calmer with a more upbeat finish. "Into a Black Hole" is modern technical thrash shred at its most impeccable, and "Escaping the Black Hole" is an industialized nod to Meshuggah excluding the briliant melodic lead sections. The album is wrapped up by the 12-min closer "Dark Matter, Pt. 2", which alternates hard galloping thrash with meditative atmospheric passages not to mention the excellent leads again. This is a really impressive entry into the all-instrumental progresive thrash catalogue further consolidating Norway's reputation as the land of the thinking musicians.

Pulling Forces Full-Length, 2015

JOIN THE DEAD (USA)

Former members of the classic thrash outfits Decadence and the much more famous Deliverance have joined forces here for the production of this cool semi-technical classic/modern effort. The music is varied and interesting with tasteful melodic leads which are the highlight recalling none other than Alex Scholnick (Testament). "Self Inflicted Pain" is an excellent progressive pounding thrasher whereas the closing "Idol Faith" is a fast blitzkrieg Bay-Areasque shredder akin to Testament, another resemblence with the aforementioned legends in the vocal department as well where the guy semi-shouts with authority coming close to Chuck Billy. And these gorgeous leads will haunt you, I promise...

Join the Dead EP, 2012

Official Site

JOKER (CANADA)

Based on the single, this obscure formation offer semi-technical speed/thrash with echoes of Megadeth. The guys aptly blend fast with slow rhythms producing one cool progressiver at the end: "Savage Breed" which is an eventful shredder ruined a bit by the very buzzy guitar sound, and by the not very passionate mid-ranged clean vocals. The production is quite muddy and hampers the efforts of this otherwise competent outfit.

Laff and a Half Demo, 1988
Not Playing with a Full Deck Single, 1990

JOSH JOHNSON (USA)

This very ambitious guy opens this saga with the imposing 14.5-min opus "Falling Splinter Of The God Nucleus" and surprisingly manages to keep the listener's attention thanks to an apt blend of hard thrashing rhythms, virtuoso lead sections and dramatic atmospheric sweeps all this carefully laid out. This metal encyclopaedia is followed by the pounding thrasher "Drawn And Quartered", and later it becomes evident that Josh is intent on pounding the fans into oblivion with a pounder after pounder following in quick succession including a few admirable technical achievements ("Pear Of Anguish") the clever intricate arrangements again kind of overshadowed by the very good leads. "Scold's Bridle" is an imposing, atmospheric epic cut, and "Scavenger's Daughter" is another display of virtuoso musicianship with dramatic crescendos, swirling rhythms, and again a portion of heavy, pounding tunes bordering on doom this time. Mentioning doom, it completely overtakes the closer "Catherine Wheel" which will be a good reminder of early Black Sabbath Josh finally managing to adjust his shaky semi-clean vocals to produce several cool melodic passages. The guy has done a fairly good job here producing a diverse album which would please a wide gamut of fans. Now it's time to track down "Inquisition, Pt. I"...

Inquisition, Pt. II Full-Length, 2016

JUDA'S WAKE (USA)

Modern thrash with some interesting progressive and alternative elements sounding like a more aggressive version of Tool.

There Is Only Technology Full-Length, 2004

Official Site

JUDGMENT (IRELAND)

Competent old school thrash played with energy and gusto; the sound quality is a bit buzzy and stands a bit on the way of the guitars. The singer has an expressive semi-clean tember who delivers despite the noisy background. The tempos vary, but the highlight would be the faster numbers ("Perfect Murder", "Killing You") where the guys touch the Bay-Area. The closing "Magic Mushroom" is a less serious all-instrumental crossover cut.

The Perfect Murder Demo, 1990

JUDGE & JURY (USA)

Another obscure, but worthy 4-song demo of technically-minded thrash which sounds like a more technical version of the Brits Xentrix. There are touches of Anthrax's 80's period, including some in the vocal department. Like Xentrix on "Kim" the guys slow down, inserting some very good balladic moments where nice female vocals can also be heard, and these are the moments where the lead guitar is simply brilliant. The rest is good energetic thrash untouched by the detrimental modern tendencies.

Demo Demo, 1992

JUDGEMENT (USA)

The "Draped In Black" EP: a thrash/death metal mix of the classic kind, intense, at times pretty technical, stuff with apocalyptic death metal vocals, sometimes assisted by less "holy" black-ish shrieks. The approach recalls the French Outcast (their sophomore effort, above all) and the Dutch Led Astray, so expect numerous chops and sudden fast breaks along the way. "Reanimated Corpse" is a prime technical thrash/deathster which will also remind of Hellwitch. The blast-beats may come as too much for the more level-headed fans, but the dynamics achieved here would delight many, including the black metal fans who would hear something familiar on the bombastic closer "Casket".
"The Bitter End" has a drier sound by introducing the technical elements to an extent which at this stage are overtaken by the direct lashing riffs the guys shredding with power by alternating fast with slower paces onto almost every song. The delivery is strictly modern distantly recalling the more recent Kreator works with a pinch of Darkane-sque dispassionate rhythmic patterns.

Judgement EP, 2006
The Bitter End Full-length, 2007
Sacrifice the Weak Full-length, 2010
Draped In Black EP, 2011

My Space

JUDGEMENT (USA, New Jersey)

Based on the first demo, this band play very good thrash akin to the first Forbidden albums; the songs are long (6-7min), and there are some great riffs ala "Twisted into Form", added to the quite energetic delivery. The vocals are high-pitched semi-clean ones, very close to Russ Anderson (Forbidden again).

Demo Demo, 1990
Infernal Reality Demo, 1992

Official Site

JUDGEMENT DAY (HOLLAND)

Based on the "Pathology Of Crowding" demo, this band, whose line-up features the drum monster Paul Beltman (Sinister, among other acts) play dark, brooding thrash/death with a sophisticated technical edge, not unlike Pestilence, but those guys' music is faster and more aggressive. Most of the time this is almost pure death metal, staying in the fast papameters quite a lot, but the intriguing guitar hooks and the blitzkrieg leads will keep any extreme metal fan entertained. The only slower moment is the Slaughter cover version of "F.O.D." at the end, which may be to some a pleasant deviation from the dynamics of the preceding material.
The "To Conjure Conjoint Confusion" EP contains 3 songs, 2 of which are super-fast death metal, "Clouds Of Mordor" to the point of absurdity: an ultra-fast blasting piece even touching the Australian monsters The Berzerker; "To Conjure Conjoint Confusion" is a much more moderate thrash/death hybrid. The middle is occupied by another cool cover of Slaughter: "Fuck of Death", which is a nice "oasis" amidst the other raging material.
"Cir-Cum-Cis-Ion Of The Mar-Tyr" is quite a diverse affair mixing black, thrash and death metal, and both direct and some very twisted technical passages. The very fast moments are not that many, and at least half of the tracks are doom-tinged in a way not too different from Orphanage or Ophthalamia. The best sections are those where technicality and brutality "marry": "Sexual Intercourse", probably the perfect background for "a sexual intercourse" (kidding, of course: it will either throw you into a spontaneous immediate orgasm, or will ruin your sex life for good). There's very little thrash to be heard here, and overall the music will also remind you of another Dutch act: Sinister, who later recruited the drummer here: Paul Beltman, who along with another member from Judgement Day, is currently having one more death metal project: Scrotum.

Hypocritical Demo, 1990
Corpse Flakes Demo, 1991
Pathology Of Crowding Demo, 1994
Effigy of The Possessed Split, 1995
Cir-Cum-Cis-Ion Of The Mar-Tyr Full-length, 1995
To Conjure Conjoint Confusion EP, 1997
March of the Apocalypse EP, 2002
40 Minutes To Impact Full-length, 2004

Official Site

JUDGEMENT DAY (USA)

Based on the "The End You Fear" demo, these guys provide heavy seismic thrash with a strong doomy flavour. The tracks are quite heavy with several more dynamic moments "roaming" around: the cool speedy, also jumpy, cut "I Am" which even borders on death metal at some point; the frolic hardcore-ish "Mosh At The Inagural Ball". The guitars have sharpness which gets a bit lost due to the not very clear sound quality. The singer semi-recites in an even, dispassionate manner, but fits the steam-rolling musical approach which doesn't really require too much singing.

Demo Demo, 1991
The End You Fear Demo, 1992

JUDGMENT HAMMER (USA)

Classic-sounding speed/power/thrash of the more playful 80's American type; the guys play with melodic riffs relying on great leads: "Judgment Hammer" (this one is a fine dynamic speedster), or on energetic galloping rhythms: "No Surrender", to pull it through, but a couple of songs in the 1st half are less interesting and slower. The 2nd half is a bit better with the early Metallica worship "Kill Or Be Killed" which is classic thrash at its best; the speed/thrash metal fury "Swift Justice" graced by a nice balladic mid-section; and the intense galloping closer "Brazen Serpent". Still, it also contains much less interesting power/thrashers where the slow riffage considerably "kills" the inertia.

Arbiter of Fate Full-length, 2009

My Space

JUGGERNAUT (BRAZIL)

Juggernaut will easily stick out of the enormous thrash metal pack from Brazil, and not only because the musicians behind it are former members of the thrash masters Rhestus (collaborating with guys from another thrash metal outfit, Fuzilador). This is quite cool technical thrash with shades of death metal akin to the Russians End Zone which also features great later period Death-like riffs. When the opening riffs from the first track "Lines of the Edge" reach your ears, you know this can not be an ordinary stuff; that same track is a feast of addictive intelligent riffs which would be one of the best numbers even on "Symbolic" or "The Sound of Perseverance". Later the music remains on the same high level with both the speed and technicality preserved on almost each song accompanied by mid-ranged death metal growls. The album closer "Own World" calms down settling for a slower, heavier approach, bringing forward a nice middle break with an acoustic guitar and an Oriental solo.
"Ground Zero Conflict" is more death metal-oriented the guys now lashing harder, but the general approach still remains mostly within the later-period Death confines with frequent thrashy breaks "tearing the silence". The riffs are fast'n tight becoming more twiddling on the shorter numbers ("Free Words to Fight", "Lost in Collapse") which are surprisingly the more technically-refined cuts with the more sudden twists in execution. "Faces of Wax" pulls all the stops with its perfect stop-ang-go rhythms, but there's no time for any similar musical exploits since the closing speedster "Undercurrents" wraps it up after that (yes, the album is barely half an hour long) with swirling intense guitars and a cool descending outro. The band are not a very regular presence on the scene; they could have elongated this effort a bit more rather than pulling the "Atheist trick" (very good, but very short-lasting music) on the fans.

Lines Of The Edge Full-Length, 2006
Ground Zero Conflict Full-Length, 2011

Official Site

JUGGERNAUT (USA)

This is the band where Steve Cooper, the singer who was in S.A. Slayer first, continued his career. Another member who might be familar to you, is Bobby 'Wire' Jarzombek- the drummer who later worked with acts like Iced Earth, Spastik Inc., Halford, Riot, etc. This is an original take on thrash metal; the band's style is actually more of a mix of power and thrash with some cool technical elements. "Baptism Under Fire" is the clumsier, more heavy-handed effort, with the band's style having not taken a complete shape, and along with some stylish decisions ("Juggernaut, "Impaler"), there are a lot more ordinary power/thrash riffs, making the band just one of the many American bands offering similar stuff.

"Trouble Within" comes with more technical guitar work, striking leads, and more complex song-structures. Some songs are really worthy technical numbers ("Russian Roulette", "Trouble Within"), a bit rough around the edges, with some kind of unfinished parts as though the guys have given up elaborating them any further at some stage; a style which was later polished and perfected on works like Realm's "Suiciety" and Helstar's "Nosferatu". It certainly offers more direct music, like the good speed metal instrumental "Stella Rubae", and the pure doomster "The Pirate's Blade". Although the American music scene has already created some better examples of technical/progressive metal (Watchtower, Ulysses Siren, Have Mercy) at that point, the Juggernaut's efforts in this direction are surely worth checking out.

Baptism Under Fire Full-length, 1986
Trouble Within Full-length, 1987

Vibrations of Doom

JUICIO FINAL (BRAZIL)

Based on the demo, this act specialize in ripping thrash/proto-death accentuated by very brutal, guttural death metal vocals. The hyper-active approach has its choppy, more technical (the title-track, the Rigor Mortis-esque shredder "Matador") meanderings, but it's the brutal nature of cuts like the gridning outrage "Solo por No Ser Normal" and the thrash/death rager "Hidden In A Sacrifice" which make this recording a nice underground cult phenomenon, not to mention the frolic closing instrumental "Cerveza" which is a rendition of the popular Russian folk song "Katiusha".

Now Demo, 1992
Psychoagony Full-length, 1993
Karkoma Full-length, 1996

JULGAMENTO (BRAZIL)

Based on "Flagelo Fatalista", these guys play a blend of modern thrash and hardcore. There will be plenty of moshing here, including the odd blast-beats, which surprisingly co-exist quite well with the surrounding them much slower groovy passages.

Julgamento Full-length, 2008
Flagelo Fatalista Full-length, 2009

Official Site

JUMALATION (FINLAND)

Based on the "Jumalation Thrash Attack" demo, this is first-class retro speed/thrash metal which nicely crosses the German side of the scene (Destruction) with some Slayer-esque aggression plus a few technical riffs ala Gammacide and Torture. The tracks are longer than what usually goes with this style, and there are plenty of mighty, also meaty, riffs here for the thrash metal fan to headbang to.
The full-length finally arrives after a lifetime of wait and the guys haven't forgotten how to play some fierce blitzkrieg old school thrash. A fiery riff after fiery riff pours over the listener who will by all means have a good time with this "assault" which is also favoured by the intense shouty death metal vocals. "Rebellion" is the odd galloping stomper, and "Pre-Mansion of Hell" is an excellent conversion towards more stylish technical thrash. The only more seeming drawback would be the 8.5-min doomy opus "Tormentor" which doesn't deliver even half as much as the brilliant short technical ripper "Evil Spirits" which follows it. The closing "Life Line" sounds a bit awkward: it's sung by a woman/girl and is more on the thrash/crossover side also coming by a worse sound quality; could be a leftover from a very early period of the band's career; or a track taken from the previous act where most of the guys were seen, Forca Macabra?

Jumalation Thrash Attack Demo, 2001
Metal on Metal Best of/Compilation, 2004
Rehearseal Studio Demo Demo, 2005
The Church of Isaac Full-Length, 2011

Official Site

JUNKYARD LIPSTICK (SOUTH AFRICA)

Based on "Repulsive Judgement", this all-female act from Capetown pull out crunchy modern thrash which covers a wide range of paces as the girls try to keep the dynamics high "flirting" with the more technical ("Damned In The Deep South"") at times, but it's headbanging energizers like "Debt Society" and "Trafficked And Tortured" that will keep you hooked. Still, the "laurels" go to the closing "Forsaken Liberty" which is a nice technical thrash/deathster with sudden time and tempo-changes, plus a good sense of melody all over. The girl behind the mike is a horse death metal semi-shouter, and one would be quite surprised to hear her sing in this intense guttural manner.

Hellbent Full-length, 2013
The Butcher's Delight EP, 2014
Repulsive Judgement Full-length, 2016

Official Site

JURASSIC JADE (JAPAN)

One of the originators of Japanese thrash metal, who remained one of the greatest acts to ever come out of this country (maybe only second to Ritual Carnage and Doom). The band's works of the 80's are some of the finest hours of the whole scene- great energetic, often quite aggressive thrash, crossing for the most part the Bay-Area style with Slayer, boasting very tight and sharp guitar work. In 1991, when most bands were looking for ways to adjust their music to the modern tastes, these guys nailed down another fine slab of intense classic thrash where along with the shorter, aggressive numbers, there were some longer ones with impressive genuine technical moments, suggesting at the band's bigger potential to be realised very soon. Alas, the fans had to wait for six long years in order to hear some new Jurassic Jade material. It was worth the wait cause "After Killing Man" sounds exactly like the previous one promised: effective technical thrash with slight modern "decorations", still "armed" with several headbanging explosions, but fairly more elaborate.

"Wonderful Monument" appeared after another, this time shorter, 3-year pause, and brought about a more complex and modernized sound including quite a few eclectic, offbeat moments (industrial elements, hardcore, ballads, etc.). The straight sections from the previous effort are much fewer; at the time when the classic sound was coming back to vogue with full force, these guys have modernized their music to a considerable extent. Four years later "Left Eye" was a pleasant surprise, abandoning a certain part of the modern elements from its predecessor, concentrating again on the guitar-driven side, still with a strong technical edge, but much more comprehensive, and with a much bigger number of sharp, headbanging riffs.

"Doku Yume Superuma" is 6 tracks which sound like a logical follow-up to "After Killing Man", but the approach is more aggressive, and even more technical: "Unborn Child", which is a slower creepy, quite technical, twisted number; "Can Your Bird Sing?", a short 2-min vortex-like hallucinogenic track; and, of course, the remastered version of "After Killing Man", turned into a violent thrasher here with screaming leads, pounding guitars, and some sample dialogues as a background support, creating a nice industrial atmosphere.
"Hemiflegia" is a great reminder of the band's abilities and the fact that they are far from having said their final word yet. "Monster Sacre Faradized" is the prototypical twisted technical number with all the eclectic avantgarde decisions and sharp intense riffage. "Track 2 (Japanese Title)" starts in a brutal, unbridled manner, but later on the steel technical guitars take over along with the haunting atmospheric passages; the aggressive moments come up again to make room for more technical performance. "Track 3 (Japanese Title)" is a more quiet, slower technical/progressive composition, but "Track 4 (Japanese Title)" speeds up again although at some stage it gets quite chaotic and technical, too. "Track 5 (Japanese Title)" is progressive/technical thrash at its most wonderful abstract form, a nice reminder of mid 90's Voivod and the Canadians Obliveon. "Hemiplegia" returns to the more classic pattern and rages on in the best 80's spirit, offering, of course, a slight technical twist. Unfortunately, this wasn't a rehearsal for an upcoming full-length release, but just a short exercise for the band in order to not forget to play.
"Endoplasm" is high-octane Jurassic Jade trade mark thrash, another seamless blend of classic and modern thrash, served in a way only these masters can. "Track 1 (Japanese Title)" is the classic thrash fan's dream-come-true with, of course, the obligatory for the guys nods to more recent times, and a brilliant surreal passage in the middle: the perfect contrast to the raging riffs which come again later. "Smell Of The Pebble" is straight retro mid-tempo thrash with almost no deviations, followed bu the aggressive explosion "Let's Go Heroes": a fabulous mix of Voivod-esque abstract motifs and some brutal riffage; oh, and lets' not forget the nice balladic interlude. "Endoplasm" is a cool technical, chaotic thrash number covering a wide spectre of moods and rhythms in a bit more than 4-min. "Mimic Cry" switches onto some more classic aggression with another great surreal technical twist before "3 Times Per 49 Days" provides another whirlwind of meaty sharp, more mid-paced riffs and stylish "out there" parts. If this is just a warm-up for the eventual full-length, then one could hardly wait...

Live At Explosion! Ep, 1985
War By Proxy Full-Length, 1987
Gore Full-Length, 1989
Never Forget Those Days Full-Length, 1991
After Killing Man Full-Length, 1997
Doku Yume Superuma EP, 1998
Wonderful Monument Full-Length, 2000
Left Eye Full-Length, 2004
Hemiflegia EP, 2006
Endoplasm EP, 2008

Official Site

JUST (HUNGARY)

This is quirky progressive thrash of the more melodic variety; the problem is that two of the three tracks are performed live, and the muddy sound takes away quite a bit from the stylish delivery from which the bass seems to be the most prominent instrument. "Bells" at the end tries something more flashy in the lead department, but the thin, unrehearsed punky vocals are hardly another asset to this obscure, less ordinary effort.

Rising Falling Back Demo, 1991

JUST CAUSE (CANADA)

This band boast the presence of the legendary Gene Hoglan, the drum "monster" who has been part of quite a few renowned metal bands throughout the years. The music at display here is a modern mixture of thrash and death metal, quite fast and technical. There are moments when industrial overtones sneak through and the sound comes close to Fear Factory. This is a good album with short, but very energetic tracks and some great riffs; I guess I don't have to add that the star of the show is Hoglan whose amazing performance on the drums makes this work even more worthy. I hope these guys will be heard of again soon. (8 years gone, and still having some hope left...)

Finger It Out Full-Length, 1999

My Space

JUST ONE FIX (NEW ZEALAND)

Based on "Blood Horizon", this act offers a dynamic mixture of modern and classic thrash with a modern production and not very impressive shouty hardcore vocals. The guitar work is razor-sharp, and the guys don't spare speed on the shorter songs, but there are attempts at a more ambitious song-writing where the sharpness disappears: the semi-ballad "As I Wanna Be", the overlong mid-tempo stomper "Cult Of The Vampire". "Wasted Life" works the best from the aforementioned lot being a complex semi-technical thrasher with nice speedy insertions. The closing title-track is a close second blending fast sections with slower heavy Slayer-sque breaks.
"Let Them Hate ... as Long as They Fear" bears quite a few surprises although the band sticks to their staple moshing delivery which alternates between faster and more laid-back cuts; until the arrival of the "heavy artillery" in the middle, a string of more serious, longer compositions which sound quite interesting offering a wide range of melodic tunes and tempo-changes "City Of The Damned" being a prime example of this rich, multi-faced approach. The more immediate shredder "Crushed Beyond Reckoning" separates this group from the closing "Frazetta Moon", an 11-min saga reaching progressive heights a few thrash-fixated albums can be proud of, without forgetting about several impetuous speed/thrashing passages. This is a surely big step forward for then band who may even offer more unexpected niceties in the years to come.

The Price Of $ellvation Full-length, 2007
Blood Horizon Full-length, 2010
Let Them Hate ... as Long as They Fear Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

JUSTICE (GERMANY)

This act boast the presence of the singer Michael "Mitch" Schmitt (Paradox) and the drummer Ian Finlay (Running Wild) in the earlier stages of their career. Based on "The Descendant", the style is modern power/thrash metal, but surprisingly catchy and well done. The songs are mostly mid-paced with a dark and heavy sound. The last song is a joke, featuring a very disrespectful treatment of Iron Maiden's "Run To The Hills" (even more offensive than the one of Metallica) in terms of both lyrics and music.
"The Hammer Of Justice" is better with a more aggressive approach mixing speedy classic thrashers ("2 Minutes 2 Live", "Ritual in Rhodes") with heavier, mid-paced, modern thrash tracks ("Life Undead"), plus a brutal death metal-ish short, less-than-1-min outburst "Shrabbzih Myisel", and a cool cover of Twisted Sister's "Street Justice" at the end. The only complaint are the low-tuned death-ish vocals which are the dominating ones; the other, the clean ones which spring up from time to time, are much more fitting to the music.
The debut EP is dark stomping affair with power and proto-thrash "duelling" for domination on a solid mid-paced, classic-sounding, background which may wear thin at some point since the guys very seldom liven things up with the casual more intense rhythm. There are adherences to the balllad and as a whole at this early stage the band seemed to not be very fond of thrash. Kudos should be paid to the singer, though: his attached warm clean tone is by all means the highlight here.

Name The Never EP, 1993
Das Weihnachtshörspiel Full-Length, 1996
The Hammer Of Justice Full-Length, 2002
The Descendant Full-Length, 2004

Official Site

JUSTICE (SPAIN)

This is still classic-sounding very heavy volcanic power/thrash which marches forward in a steady mid-tempo manner, the main distractions coming from the sparce brutal deathy outbursts on "Shadows". "I Make" is a fairly effective number with excellent pounding technical riffs and genuine sinister atmosphere, the highlight on this competently-written, but marred by a poor sound quality and bad semi-declamatory death metal vocals, effort.

Demo One Demo, 1993

JUSTICIA (SPAIN)

This is cool stuff: Metallica's "...And Justice For All" meets modern thrash metal. "Alone Against All" opens the album no worse than "Blackened", in a similar fashion, maybe not as techncal and complex, and the energy remains for the next couple of tracks as the riffs are crushingly heavy. "Judgement Day" is a bit confusing, but just in the beginning, with its groovy guitars; things quickly go back to normal later on. Still, the groove is present in the 2nd half of the album which ends with the choppy, modern "Mad" which recalls the middle, more experimental period of the Germans Atrocity ("Blut").

Alone Against All Full-length, 1998

Official Site

JUSTIN SANE (USA)

Crunchy steam-rolling thrash metal of the old school also sharing some of the proto-modern heaviness of Flotsam & Jetsam's "Quatro". Smashing hammering riffs will attack you here sustained in a solid mid-pace with the odd pinch of melody (the nice semi-balladic "Losing It All"). The closing "Spirits" is an excellent semi-technical thrasher ala Defiance and Forced Entry with fine more peaceful relieves.

Spirits Demo, 1998

JUVENOCRACY (USA)

Modern thrash with several vocal styles; there are faster classic thrash metal moments as well, but generally this band is just one of the many.

2 Of A Kind Full-Length, 1996

My Space


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