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N.A.O.P. (HOLLAND)

These stalwarts on the Dutch thrash/crossover (aka "Noisy Act of Protest": see the title of the debut) scene do a good job on their debut with intense thrashy crossover which is both fast and catchy, at times lashing nice speed/thrash even touching Angel Dust's "Into the Dark Past" ("Face To The Wall"), at others moshing out in a sincere hardcore fashion ("Destroy Power", "White Trash"), and "Death Judgement" is a pure vicious thrash/proto-death bomb closely followed by the smashing D.R.I.-esque closer "Prisoner of Wealth". The singer is a cool addition with his thick semi-death metal voice who spits the lyrics matching the intensity of the riffs coming close at times to the jocund meanish delivery of Pete Lee (Lawnmower Deth).

"New Age Of Politics" (which could be another acronym for the band name?) is another intense offering the guys thrashing with no remorse adding a more carefree jocund attitude bringing them closer to the hardcore arena at times. The mosh never stops here even on the longer, seemingly at first sight more serious, material ("The Right People"), and one will have a very good time jumping on short dynamic outbursts like "Seas of Thirst" and "Survival Unites", and the other 15 (there are whole 17 cuts here) songs (the closing "Cold Flesh" is an exception being a moody quasi-industrial creeper, quite effective and intriguing) all delivered in a direct energetic fashion. The singer now is less brutal changing his aggressive death semi-grunts for more attached shouty semi-clean antics spat in a forceful semi-declamatory manner.

Noisy Act Of Protest Full-length, 1991
New Age Of Politics Full-length, 1993
In Time EP, 1997
Full Contact Full-length, 1999
Hard To Deny Full-length, 2003

Official Site

N.E.U.K. (UK)

Very typical for the time groovy post-thrash in a boring mid-pace and semi-shouty hardcore vocals. Some faster moments may remind of Flotsam & Jetsam's "Quatro" ("Propaganda"), but the rest is pretty bland even by 90's standards descending to some form of groovy doom on the last 3 songs.

State of Mind Full-length, 1995

N.M.E. (USA)

Based on the debut, this is raw, simplistic thrash (or black) along the lines of Venom; music-wise the merits are very few, but it has definitely had an impact on the future black metal scene. "Machine of War" is a very distant departure from the debut's sound, sticking to painfully familiar, even for that time, modern groovy formulas spiced by very angry shouty vocals. The guitars are suitably heavy doing the best on the heaviest, doom-charged, numbers ("Acid Reign"). Short speedsters ("Dead Years: The Politics Of Paranoia") also roam around as well as a few inept covers: two of Black Sabbath ("Children of the Grave" & "Electric Funeral", the latter better done with a genuine doom vibe; the former turned into awful hardcore with messy guitars); a short variation of Slayer's "South of Heaven" lasting for a bit more than 1-min; AC/DC's "Let There be Light" is also here as a finishing touch played in a carefree crossover manner the singer shouting even more unpleasantly on this one.

Unholy Death Full-length, 1986
Machine of War Full-length, 1995
Vermination Full-length, 2002

My Space

N.W. 77 (BRAZIL)

Simplistic direct thrash/crossover with shouty choruses aplenty and generally uplifting merry rhythms except for a few short hardcore outrages ("N.A.G.A.C.A."). Purer thrash is almost reached on another ripper, "Worldwide Death", but the friendly tone is seldom broken on this optimistic barrage which is assisted by very shouty quarrelsome vocals.

Nuclear Awake Full-Length, 2015

N.Y.C. MAYHEM (USA)

Based on the "Mayhemic Destruction" demo: these guys pull out raw, aggressive thrash which occasionally catches the ear, but most of the time this is brutal bashing with the drums, guitars, bass and vocals representing one thick wall of a not very intelligible sound. Despite its raw nature it's clear that the band were trying to push the boundaries of the genre towards more extreme fields, the way acts like Messiah, Possessed, Death, etc. did later, but in a much better way.

Mayhemic Destruction Demo, 1985
Second Demo Demo, 1985

NACHZEHRER (USA)

A 4-song demo of fast epic black metal ala early Burzum spiced with thrash; rending raven-like vocals tear the air supported by numerous blasting passages and a few haunting slower melodic ones.
The EP is another hyper-affair praising Burzum again, above all, this time calming things down with the odd slower section ("Barsarkar-gang") where some thrash can be heard. That same thrash, however, hasn't been given too much space, intense speedy black metal having taken over also sharing some of the orchestral pompousness of later-period Emperor.

Black Thrash Ritual Demo, 2010
Pestilence Hungers in the Shadows EP, 2011

Official Site

NADIMAC (SERBIA)

Cool aggressive thrash ala early Sadus and Rigor Mortis; the music is fast and intense with very few pauses along the way, characterized by simplistic straight riffage and very good bass support. "Drzavni Neprijatelj Broj Kec" is built around the songs from the EP with the new material offering the same relentless approach, fast merciless stuff "shooting" a bullet after bullet ("Headshot U Glavu", "Sam Sebi") seldom missing the target, boldly venturing into proto-death waters ("Dlake Na Sapunu", where more stylish semi-technical riffs can also be heard) whenever needed. "Zmajeva Jajca" is a nice number mixing the all-out speedy approach with more melodic hooks recalling the Finns Solitaire including a playful crossover mid-break. The closing "Bog Cuva Bekriju" is again more in the speed/thrash metal camp, with a couple of more melodic tunes thrown in. For sheer speed this act scores very high sounding at the same time fresh and varied, and even acts like the Japanese Fastkill and the aforementioned Solitaire could find something to learn from this really nice nod to the old school. The singer Danilo "Daca" Trbojevic also provides the vocals for the technical death metallers Daggerspawn.

"Po Kratkom Postupku" shows the guys trying to break the speed records again, and may succeed at some stage since the manic fast shred here never stops even for a split second, boldly bordering on hardcore on the more frantic moments ("Znakovi"). "Gas Do Daske" is a pretty contrasting number moving from more laid-back speed/thrash to almost grindy mosh ala Cryptic Slaughter, but the softest piece would probably be the crossover joy "Lapot". For the rest one has to have a strong neck to survive through it: a truly dedicated to speed band.

"Nejebanje Eivesile" continues the ultra-speedy "carnival" with panache and gusto speed/thrashing relentlessly, unleashing short blitzkrieg numbers with precision and spite some of them racing with the speed of light: "Koma Sutra", "Smrt Autoriteta", "Masturbatorski Lakat", etc. "Grupna Terapija" features a not very overt technical element plus a less tamed proto-deathy section the latter also gracing the following "Grad Ispod Grada". The shreds on "Crna Reka" recall Destruction, and the final "Vukodlak" is a raging thrash/crossover hymn coming close again to the manic pyrotechnics of Cryptic Slaughter. With a third super-speedy effort in a row the guys have managed to establish themselves as one of the fastest playing acts in the genre at present.

"Manifest Protiv Sudbine": the raging speedfest goes on on full-throttle here although the band's more restrained side suddenly shines through on "Krv Do Kolena", but only to an extent. The rest is speed/thrash to-the-death: check out short exploders like "Evrope Danke Najn" and "Retardiran Za Skejt". Both hardcore and proto-death come as "companions" here and there, but their presence gives an additional boost to the remorseless musical approach.
"Besnilo" is the next in line "besnilo" the guys moshing in the familiar manner by seldom stopping for breath along the way as at times the intensity reaches hardcore dimensions ("Jednom Nogom u Gradu", "Kapitalizam je Kanibalizam", the short outrage "Revolucija u Izlogu"). "Prvi Put sa Kevom na Semu" is a cool attempt at a more technical song-writing by retaining the speed to a large extent, and "Rodjen u Ofsajdu (Nesportski Dan)" is a nice thrash/crossover rouser the remaining tracks faithfully following the same ways of expression with a desirable more melodic, also uplifting and carefree, flair.

Metal Je Rat EP, 2009
Drzavni Neprijatelj Broj Kec Full-length, 2009
Po Kratkom Postupku Full-length, 2011
Nejebanje' Eivesile Full-Length, 2013
Manifest Protiv Sudbine Full-Length, 2015
Besnilo Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NAG (NORWAY)

Crusty black/thrashcore which has its both milder and more brutal side; in other words, expect everything from crossover to grindcore including a few surprisingly stylish exercises in more technical thrash/death ("Master"; the dissonant masterpiece "Soon") which leave the rest much more simplistic rest far behind. The vocalist shouts in an apocalyptic, schizophrenic manner the whole time adding more spice to the outrageous musical scenery.

NAG Full-Length, 2016

NAGNOENIE (RUSSIA)

Thrash/crossover of the retro variety with gruff semi-death metal vocals which surprisingly give the music a nice boost; the guys mosh in a more direct thrashy manner at times those songs being more mid-paced and heavier, but enjoyable nonetheless. The happiness reaches its climax on the Oriental piece from Quentin Tarantino's "Pulp Fiction" in the middle, here turned into a vortex of jolly thrash/crossover rhythms, the highlight of the album also featuring vocals. This unpretentious mixture of faster and slower numbers is really appealing, by the way, with a couple of doomy hooks added as well, plus the odd short melodic lead.

Bezumie 13 Full-Length, 2001

NAHAB (USA)

Rough primal black/death/thrash which is awkwardly chaotic reflected in overlong cuts from which only the slower sections ("Eternal Winter") can be deciphered. The leads are on a higher level, though, and give a cool epic "colouring" to the more restrained compositions ("Signum Crucis De Fragmentism"). The singer is a shouty deathster, but his rendings can be intelligible from time to time, unlike the music which for most of the time is one big wall of noise.

Nahab Full-Length, 2015

NAHUM (CZECH)

This band plays modern thrash/death which is accompanied by brutal death metal vocals. The music is dynamic without being constantly fast although the more intense moments (the dramatic thrash/deathster "Room 101"; the excellent melodic death metal cut "Get Stars Back") seem to work the better. Check the end, appropriately titled "Feel the End" which is a great exiting lead-driven instrumental.

The Gates Are Open Full-length, 2012

Official Site

NAIL WITHIN (ISRAEL)

Good modern thrash/death metal with a strong nod to the Swedish school, and more particularly to the founders of the whole movement: the mighty At the Gates. The guys offer quite an amalgam of moods and styles: there is straight-out death metal, there is thrash, even with a shade of the 80's, there is also groove involved ala Pantera and Machine Head. A contribution to the album's appeal make stars from the thrash/death metal constellation: Tomas Lindberg himself, Mille Petrozza, another German throat: Robert Gonnella (Assassin), and Ze'ev Tananboim from their compatriots Salem.
Unfortunately at the present time the guys prefer to invest more time and efforts into their other project: the much less impressive groove-laden Betzefer.

Nail Within Full-length, 2003

My Space

NAILBOMB (BRAZIL)

This band was formed by Max Cavalera, after he left Sepultura; he joined efforts here with the Fudge Tunnel member Alex Newport. Together they have done a good job, with the style of their project coming as a combination of the two bands: this is industrial thrash, which is more up-tempo (but nor really fast), and less noisy than the works of Fudge Tunnel, and more dynamic, and much better than the last Sepultura album with Max ("Roots"). The guitars crush admirably, and Cavalera does a very god job behind the mike, without betraying his traditional singing style. Perfectly conformed with the tastes of the day, "Point Blank" was a valuable addition to the growing industrial metal scene, and could be well placed among the best that year, along with Skrew's "Dusted" and Prong"s "Cleansing".

Point Blank Full-length, 1994

NAILED (CROATIA)

Modern groovy thrash metal ala Pantera with "remnants" from the 80's scene in the form of merrier thrash/crossover rhythms, mostly on the first two demos. The style could have grown into something more meaningful if the guys hadn't embraced the groovy formulas whole-heartedly on the later demos which also caused a change of name (which could have also been caused by legal issues with an act of the same name) in 2006, into Skepsis when the full-length stage was finally reached with an album released the same year ("Scream Your Scars").

Mankind Demo, 2002
World Collapse Demo, 2003
A Moment Of Clarity Demo, 2005
In Vain Demo, 2006

Official Site

NAILGUN (GERMANY)

Based on "New World Chaos", this formation provide a modern cross of power and proto-thrash. The guys take it easy by pulling epic mid-paced to doomy rhythms without speeding too much, but once the heavy riff-patterns settle in they are very hard to get rid of and the inevitable descents to ballads and all the rest are guaranteed later in the 2nd half. Still, as a work of epic power/doom metal with bits of more aggressive riffage this album should please on more than just one level not without the help of the very good dramatic clean vocals which deliver without trying anything too adventurous.

"Desolation" is a more aggressive effort with more overt thrashy tendencies on top of some imposing epic moments ("Crimean Crisis", 'Devil's Ground") which create nice officiant atmosphere. The problem is that once it settles in, it's very difficult to make it go away and it stays around to the end resulting in a couple of mellow power metal cuts as a finishing touch. Despite the promising beginning, the band continue to stick to their guns and as such this album isn't too far from the previous one style-wise.

Paindustry Full-length, 2011
New World Chaos Full-length, 2012
Desolation Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NAILGUNNER (FINLAND)

The demo: the vocals would definitely be a pull-back to some: these unholy snarls are almost contrasting to the music which is otherwise competent semi-technical thrash quite close to another Finnish band of recent years, Lethargy. Nailgunner's songs are shorter and more direct, but the overall effect is firmly on the positive side.

The full-length is a great debut featuring forceful thrash of the old school. The guys concentrate on speed and aggression rather than technicality, like it was the case on the demo, and as a result we have Slayer's "Reign in Blood" brought into the new millennium. Don't expect any calm moments: this is an all-out thrash assault until the end. "Craving Your Flesh" betrays the intense thrashing a bit, clinging more towards the speed/thrashing metal side ala early Whiplash; a situation corrected with the aggressive raging "Venomous Overdose". The closing "Torment In Pain" slows down with pounding riffs, and just when one is happy to take a break from the guys' intense delivery, comes the closing section which is another slab of fast furious thrash. This is a really impressive dedication to the 80's sound done with inspiration and love of the genre.

All Life Ends Demo, 2004
Thermonuklear Thrash Metal Warfare Split, 2005
Outbreak of Evil Vol. III Split, 2006
Apocalypse, Now or Never Full-Length, 2008

Official Site

NAIOTH (CHILE)

This outfit indulge in choppy modern thrash with a strong technical shade. The riffage is heavy and jumpy with crushing qualities "roaming" the neverland between more recent Meshuggah and Altered Aeon. The approach is accessibly abstract with the inclusion of several more dreamy balladic moments which even recall the spacey melancholic landscapes of Opeth ("Dance of Light"). The established "idyll" is rudely broken with the intense headbanging proto-deathster "Death Elements" where the "death elements" are indeed quite a few to create an aggressive, albeit technical, mood with Darkane-sque nuances. The dynamics doesn't get lost on the following "Mental Walls" which is a dramatic mechanical shredder with some very cool lead guitar work. The bleak sterile feeling gets dissipated on the excellent "Paradox Spheres" which is an outstanding instrumental with great melodies entwined with stylish technical decisions. The closing "Fast" is indeed "fast", a consummate headbanger sustained in a constant up-tempo till the very end which comes accompanied by a haunting echoing melodic guitar line. The singer isn't the best possible choice with his throaty dispassionate deathy tone, but the music is really worth hearing seeing a promising new outfit with more than a passing interest in the less ordinary side of the genre.

Dance of Light Full-Length, 2012

NAISSANT DISASTER (GREECE)

Whether this small entry was made in 1986, will remain unknown, but the very clear production and the updated proto-modern edge of the guitars kind of betray its contemporary origin. The guys acquit themselves with sharp moshing rhythms keeping a respectable pace throughout only slowing down for a few galloping riffs on "Good Corpse" at the end, which exits the demo with furious blasting sections the latter finally matching the brutal death metal singer.

1986 Demo, 2009

My Space

NAJA (ITALY)

Modern intense thrash the band nailing everyone to the ground with the sweeping opener "Dawn of the Disbelief", later calming down, but just a bit, on the more diverse "The Black Stays Black", but expect sprained necks on "Brain Detonation", and on the closing roller-coaster "Hectic Paralysis". Really good fun all around the annoyance coming mostly from the generic shouty vocal department. The band members also play as Post Execution, a more classic-prone thrash metal formation, with ony one demo (2009) released so far under that name.

No Escape from Yourself EP, 2013

Official Site

NAKACC (PERU)

Based on the "Resistencia Infecthrash" demo, these Peruvians specialize in intense heavy steam-roller classic thrash which switches onto more dynamic mosh later on to produce the violent proto-deathster "Lanzando Misiles" which finishes this short inspired effort which also boasts some cool screamy leads, but loses from the vocal side where the guy just recites in a shouty tember trying his best to deafen the instrumental parts.

Wankthrashers Demo, 2005
Infeckthrash Demo, 2005
Toxicomanos Demo, 2006
Resistencia Infecthrash Demo, 2008

Official Site

NAKED GOBLIN (UK)

A deep obscurity from Yorkshire presenting clumsy amateurish stuff following on the steps of early Venom and Sodom, but trying its best to beat them in terms of sloppy execution. The mid-paced parts make more sense, but they smell power metal more, even merry punky tunes can be felt there. The singer just recites in an optimistic punky manner fitting into the overall pristine performance of everyone involved.

Unterwelt Demo, 1988

NAKOT (SERBIA)

Two songs of speedy retro thrash/crossover topped by gruff semi-death metal vocals; the approach is close to Spazztic Blurr and Attitude Adjustment, in other words we have fast abrasive bashing staying more in the hardcore camp.

Da'ed/Nakot Split, 2008

NAMELESS (PORTUGAL)

The album title could easily win the "most tasteless album title" award. So apart from "Portuguese Bastards", what else do we have here? There are similarities to Kreator (especially in the vocal department), but Nameless' music is more laid back and less aggressive. It contains a certain crossover element ("The Reasons Of Life", "Feel Like Shit"), as well as timid attempts at a more serious song-writing ("When The Maniac Comes Near"), but most of the time this is just an average, run-of-the-mill thrash metal effort despite its numerous classic leanings. The band members did a much better job mere months earlier as Afterdeath when they served a nice tribute to the 90's vogues with the excellent modern death/thrash progressive effort "Backwords".

The Overcome of the Portuguese Bastards Full-length, 1996

My Space

NAMELESS (USA)

This obscure effort provides atmospheric power/thrash of the old school which is accentuated by vigorous galloping riffs and cool melodies the latter carrying an epic vibe and a touch of progressive. The tempos change throughout the songs the guys only losing it on the clumsy closer "Grungry Hat" from which it doesn't become quite clear whether it's "hungry", or "grungy"...

What Are You Afraid Of? Demo, 1993

NAMELESS CRIME (ITALY)

American power metal with a certain thrash-flavour is what these Italian guys offer here. The music is actually quite satisfying reminding of 80's heroes like Heretic, Meliah Rage, Laaz Rockit and Metal Church.

Nameless Crime Full-length, 2003
Backdraft EP, 2004
Law and Persecution Full-length, 2006

My Space

NAMELESS MOTIVE (USA)

These Americans specialize in intense brisk thrash/crossover which can become ultra-aggressive ("Conjurer Of Blood"; the short "generic" brutalizer "Generic") on occasion with shades of grind even. "Outworld Invasion" is an ultra-thrasher with touches of death metal, but the good mood is ultimately spoilt by the awful techno-rap closer "NM Squad". What the...

Thrashing To The Grave EP, 2012

Official Site

NANAHARA SHUYA (CHINA)

This is very chaotic stuff comprising thrash, doom, and a bit of death metal which ranges from brutal blasting moments to depressive Khold-esque ones this mess "supported" by ultra-hysterical shrieky vocals. Curious atmospheric speedsters roam around ("Night of the Castronauts") sounding like the mutant child of Impaled Nazarene and Rigor Mortis, as well as appropriately used haunting keyboards ("Battles") the latter recalling the Danish avantgardists Korova. But this isn't all since later on one will encounter hypnotic monotonous doom ala Godflesh, the happy crossover interlude "Necro Loco", and the weird, but captivating, spacey instrumental "Winternova" at the end, an ambitious take on the surreal progressive style of the Australians Alchemist with another portion of stylish keyboard insertions. This isn't bad, actually, although too scattered all over the place, and with a bit of refinement here and there it may turn into a more convincing take on the extreme metal hybrid in the future.

Imperial Grand Strategy Full-length, 2006

My Space

NAPALM (SPAIN)

This band specialize in a heavy abrasive modern/classic blend which is at times on the power metal, at times on the thrash metal side, but generally this is feelgood stuff in a dominant mid-tempo with attached, but gruff and not very melodic, shouty angry vocals. The sound quality is quite good and helps the guitars, above all, which sound a bit noisy, but contain the requisite edge and heaviness. The band are operating now under the name Napalm Storm (see the review below).

Estamos Rodeados Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NAPALM (USA)

The band started in a fashion similar to their colleagues Anihilated with energetic, hardcore-ish thrash which was quite a winner despite the lack of many musical merits; the album offered cool deviations from the energetic delivery: the slower, atmospheric 8-min "Act of Betrayal", the mid-paced stomping thrasher "Combat Zone", and the nice galloping piece "Gag of Steel", but the shorter, aggressive explosive pieces like "A.O.A." and "Attack on America" are truly the more attractive side of the band's music. "Devastation", despite its brutal title, is the most melodic song introducing softer power metal riffs. "Zero To Black" puts most of the hardcore elements away, and is overall more melodic and less impressive, exiting the thrash metal field on quite a few times.

Napalm EP, 1986
Cruel Tranquility Full-length, 1989
Zero to Black Full-length, 1990

Official Site

NAPALM STORM (SPAIN)

These folks were previously known as just Napalm (see the review above), but had to change their name in order not to get into conflicts with the American thrashers. The music on display is intense old school thrash with echoes of Sepultura's "Arise" and the Bay-Area. The speed is admirable for most of the time before the pounding "Betrayer" cancels it for a short while. The assault continues with "Slaves of Divinity", but in the 2nd half the approach becomes more mixed with some mid-pacers inserted to oppose to vicious "bombs" like "Napalm Attack". A crystal clear sound quality helps the band who also show a good sense of melody (the final title-track) on occasion.

Harmless Cruelty Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NAPALM STRIKE (USA)

The demo: 3 songs of energetic retro thrash mixing the pace on every piece still preferring to thrash with more speed although the dramatic stompiness of the final "Dead Beat Dad Beat Dead" would be to everyone's taste. The singer has an attached shouty voice with a hardcore "sting" which gives his tirades a cool melodic colouring.

The full-length arrives with all the tracks from the demo present, but the rest doesn't play second fiddle, but thrashes wildly to produce a cool effort of German-fixated stuff which seldom pauses for a break, but ends up sounding a bit one-dimensional the highlight coming in the form of a couple of really good stylish leads (check those on "Mind Control"). "Blind Submission" in the 2nd half is more on the mid-tempo side, but there's a lot of moshing thrash to be savoured (the closing fury "Thrashard") before the end as well as more frolic speed metal numbers ("K.I.A."). Some of the musicians produced something similar a few years back with Doomsday Disciple.

Demo Demo, 2012
Aiming Down the Sights Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NARAKA (CANADA)

The full-length: this Canadian outfit acquit themselves with modern post-thrash which is more on the slower, epic side of the spectre relying mostly on heavy, groovy rhythms and nice melodic hooks which seldom grow into something more sinister: "Soldiers of Demise" is a more dynamic cut, but the keyboard presence there retouches the bite a bit. "Arrogance, Thy Mercy" is a prime gothic/doom piece enlarging the album's appeal also bringing forward a couple of nice Oriental acoustic guitar passages. The 2nd half isn't as exciting with half the tracks following a semi-balladic pattern with an accentuated epic flavour with not many relations to thrash. The vocalist has a low-tuned semi-death metal tember who still fits into the officiant musical amalgam.

The EP is an even more laid-back affair with power metal and post-thrash mixed on a relaxed melodic base with a few more aggressive leanings (the dramatic bulldozer "Aadu Paambe"; the proto-death metal shredder "Gaia"). "Feed to Fire" is an engaging operatic piece with atmospheric gothic arrangements and strikes a cord at the end of this mellow effort which wouldn't be the favourite pick for the thrash metal crowd.

Naraka EP, 2010
The Messiah Experiment Full-Length, 2012

Official Site

NARCOTIC GREED (JAPAN)

Based on "Twicet Of Fate", this is good semi-technical thrash, touching Equinox and Voivod on the most inspired moments. The vocals are melodic, and at times the higher notes might annoy you. The album begins with the energetic thrasher "Don't Trust Anybody" which also puts forward more stylish decisions; "Shotgun Highway" increases the intensity and speed, and consequently fails to develop further the technical tendencies suggested on the opener, but is a satisfying short headbanger. "Deleted Illusion" thrashes intensely as well, but the guitar sound takes a more interesting edge. "Thug City" is quite an unpleasant surprise, sliding down to hard'n heavy waters, topped by the worst vocal performance on the album: dragging uninspired number, bad even if intended as a filler. Fortunately, the following songs return to the more dynamic formula, this time coming with a more technical approach resulting in the album's finest time (Damn' Em All", "Humanchain"). The closer "End Is Near" is another direct up-tempo thrasher.

"Fatal" is a smashing debut, one of the best metal albums to ever come out of Japan. This is perfectly executed classic 80's thrash with a Bay-Area flavour, recalling Forbidden's "Forbidden Evil", Toxik's "World Circus" and Death Angel's "The Ultra Violence". Furious thrashers like the opening "As the World Is Burnt" and "Greed" are the backbone of the album whereas "Scanning Hell" and "Lost Power" add a more technical, sophisticated touch to the proceedings. "Injector II" is a brilliant song which combines the more technical side of the two preceding tracks with the raging thrashing nature of the first two. "Disruption" loosens up a bit being a more uplifting thrash/crossover. The genuine technical edge remains for the last two numbers, and is even more accentuated on the magnificent closer "Partial Existence": a riff-fest at its uncompromising best covering less intense, more up-tempo galloping, and super-speedy moments: an encyclopaedia of perfectly executed classic thrash.

Fatal Full-length, 1994
Twicet of Fate Full-length, 2001

NARCOTIC SELF (USA)

Based on the EP, these folks provide conventional modern thrash which tries to run from the tested formulas with a few more intriguing decisions (the dramatic closer "Psycho Warfare"), but the application of the latter isn't apt enough to make them lead the pack. So this role is left to the heavy squashing riffs which are intercepted by several melodic lead sections. The singer isn't bad and shows quite a dexterity in handling several ranges and vocal styles the shouty death one being the most convincing.
"Cut the Chord" is noisier and less dexterously concocted the guitars being too abrasive the entertainment factor provided by the more dramatic pounding material ("Generation Victim"). "Hell in My Head" is a cool more complex thrasher touching later-period Death even, but exploits of the kind a rarity the other more stylish exercise being "Brainslave" near the end.

The Anti-Narcotics Movement Full-length, 2002
Blood And Poison Full-length, 2006
Erase Me EP, 2013
Cut the Chord Full-Length, 2016

Offical Site

NARROW HOUSE (USA)

Classic thrash which reverberations can also be heard on the guys' other project: Partiac Arrest (one album, "Beat Wagon" in 2012); but there's not even a hint of it on the other formation where they take part, the black/deathsters Mountain Grave.

Sounds of Solitude Full-Length, 2007

Official Site

NASFERATU (USA)

Aggressive, occasionally brutal thrash/death metal similar to the French acts Mercyless and Agressor; there's quite a variety at display here: heavy slower sections, very fast intense ones, mid-paced ones, you name it. The vocals are also all over the place stretching from very low-tuned death metal growls to unholy snarls. "Fortress of Solitude" is a very cool thrasher with nice technical hooks which could sit proud even on Sadus' "Visions of Misery".

Plague of Doom Demo, 1991
For Blood Is The Life Demo, 1992

NASHVILLE SUICIDE MISSION (USA)

Groovy post-thrash, quite heavy, but also one-dimensional with shades of industrial and alternative; the very angry semi-death metal vocals are often crossed with much better clean ones, but the music is too rough for them to be made the dominant ones. There's one aggressive modern thrasher in the middle: "God Damn You All", but the rest is jumpy and mid-tempo at best.

The Silver Lining Full-Length, 2004

NASICRYST

This is pretty decent retro thrash which lashes fiery sharp riffs topped by expressive semi-death metal vocals, often adhering to galloping paces, plus one aggressive death metal-fixated number: "Bloody Tile", which is a ripping headbanger thrashing hard for over 5-min recalling Evildead and Devastation.

Reflections Of Hatred Demo, 1994

NASTY SAVAGE (USA)

A distinguished representative of the American metal scene; their debut is power metal of the heavy variety with timid nods to thrash, a promising debut with a sinister, dark sound. The heaviness of the debut was translated onto "Indulgence", which was a full-out thrash affair with great riffs and a crushing, steam-roller like delivery; genuine technical hooks cold be heard sparingly, suggesting at something bigger to come soon. "Abstract Reality" is a nice transitional effort, offering 4 songs of technically-minded heavy thrash with clever guitar sections and truly impressive lead performance: a fine bridge between the more direct approach of "Indulgence" and the future one. "Penetration Point" is a first-class technical thrash album, which could only be compared to the Coroner output; the intensity and the smashing heavy riffage have been lost partially, and some vortex-like sections may make the listener get lost for a while; still the band haven't forgotten about their more straight-forward past, and some tracks are all-out thrashers, this time with faster, more dynamic sections. Despite the high quality of the material offered on this one, a certain feeling remained that the band were capable of more. But they went underground after that, and stayed there until 2004; "Psycho Psycho" might be a disappointment to some, who expected a continuation of the technical thrash from "Penetration Point" since there are very few shades of less ordinary performance here: the sound is closer to "Indulgence" than any other older work of the band with its more conventional, smashing, in-your-face sound, but is by far one of the better comebacks attempted by old veterans of the past few years.

The "Wage Of Mayhem" EP, which is a remastered version of their debut demo of the same title from 1984, sees the guys still playing a more energetic brand of the up-and-coming at the time US power metal, the band trying to epitomize those characteristic heavy mid-paced riffs, by adding a touch of doom on the macabre cut "Witches Sabbath". "XXX" at the end was later included in "Indulgence", but with a boosted, more aggressive guitar participation, and is the only more thrash-fixated number on this cool warm-up, which is an obvious nod to Anvil's "Metal on Metal" and "Forged in Fire".

Nasty Savage Full-length, 1985
Indulgence Full-length, 1986
Abstract Reality EP, 1988
Penetration Point Full-length, 1989
Wage Of Mayhem EP, 2003
Psycho Psycho Full-length, 2004

Official Site

NASTY TRAST (USA)

A late comer on the American power/thrash metal scene which try to keep the classic spirit of the scene alive for another while with their anthemic, but also pretty sharp, power/thrash metal approach akin to early Metal Church and Meliah Rage. The calmer mid-paced tone on the first 2 songs is rudely interrupted by the fierce galloper "Misery" which is full of cutting riffs and screaming leads on top of the semi-clean, at times suitably screamy in the vein of Nasty Ronnie (see the review above), vocals. "Anti-Christ" is a volcanic razor-sharp mid-pacer, but "Hell Ride" tones it down a bit with more moderate power/speed metal hooks. "Talking for the Dead" brings back the heavy thunderous guitar sound, and "Death by Violence" is vintage galloping power/thrash at its classic best. "Show No Mercy" is not a Slayer cover, but is another energetic power/thrasher which can't possibly stand on the way of the speedy closer "Losing Control" which thrashes with the best out there to a great headbanging effect. It was really nostalgic, and kind of inspiring probably, to hear such albums in the mid-90's, but hardly were too many of the fans at the time interested in hearing this fairly good attempt at bringing the good old thrash back to life.

Psychoanalysis Full-length, 1994

NATAS (USA)

Brutal amateurish thrash metal with elements of proto-death and a considerable doze of hardcore; the band later changed their name to Not Us, and the style as well, moving more towards thrash/crossover.

Demo/Rehearsal Demo, 1985
Internal Damnation Demo, 1986
Outcasts Of Society Demo, 1986

NATASTOR (VENEZUELA)

The full-length: excellent old school thrash with touches of death (mostly in the vocal department) metal and gehuine technical moments recalling early Sadus (minus the brutal debut), and fine solo work. The album is quite atmospheric with orchestral song-structures and a certain use of keyboards. Elements from the Swedish death metal scene can also be heard along with a great bass-bottom. The music never gets too aggressive, but straddles between up and mid-tempo. Great technical numbers ala later period Death are the highlight of the album: the atmospheric, but sharp "Flying in the Cloudy Sky", and the most aggressive song "Mental Inquisition" which is graced by fine Oriental guitars and speedy tempos. The closer is the only more death metal-based track again recalling Death. The guys also have another outfit under their wings: the classic thrash purveyors Tinieblas who seem to be their main ocupation at present with two full-lengths and one EP released.

The Compilation comes with a slightly muddy sound quality, with a noisy buzzy guitar sound at times offering more simplistic stripped-down music much closer to thrash metal sustained in fast tempos without any technical flourishes holding onto mid-period Sepultura ("Beneath the Remains", above all) as a "guiding light", and succeeding here and there to capture the dark brutal atmosphere of the latter.
"Legiones de Terror": the prime Venezuelan metal act comes back after a decade of hibernation. The debut was already a masterpiece, but the guys aim higher and here they are with this excellent new release which sees them "marrying" thrash and death metal in a seamless technical way recalling mid/later-period Death among other renowned practitioners (Sadus, Invocator, the Swedes Agretator, etc.). The title-track is an awesome beginning with its steel complex riffs and progressive build-ups, and the rest tries to match it every bit of the way: "Virus" with a portion of stylish spasmodic blast-beats; "Olimpo" with a cavalcade of super-technical rhythms; "Descolonizacion" with the never-ending supply of fast, razor-sharp guitars; "Servant Of Darkness" with the dark sinister overtones on top of more linear Swedish thrash/death. "Asesino En Serie" is exemplary hectic technical thrash with echoes of Megadeth's "Rust in Peace", a masterpiece of old school thrashisms which inaugurates the softer, more thrash-based half of the album which also comprises the epic speed/thrasher "When An Angel Dies", the excellent more aggressive technicaller "Atrapado", and the deathy closer "The Last Call (419)" which unleashes the most intense riffs on the album with an exiting portion of very technical swirling rhythms. The vocals remain on the death metal side, maybe more shouty this time, but regardless of how inspired the singer's performance would be, his/her exploits will always remain secondary to the very good music.

1992-1996 Best of/Compilation, 2004
Natastor Full-length, 2005
Regreso del Abismo EP, 2013
Legiones de Terror Full-length, 2015

Official Site

NATHANIEL (POLAND)

A talented outfit specializing in a thrash/speed/death metal hybrid which is expectedly fast and intense, but also comes with a nice progressive "decoration" which is more pronounced on the slower material ("Adonai") where quite a few time and tempo-changes intertwine on a soft melodic background. Later on the beauty becomes too much to bear from the hard-boiled metal fan and at the end one can't help, but to be "overflown with emotions" on the final "Overflow Of Emotions", and to question the thrashy merits of this beautiful meditative offering.

Hidden Inside a Spirit Full-length, 1999

Official Site

NATHENOTHING (SPAIN)

The demo: intense thrash mixing classic with modern riffs with a heavy pounding sound and a shade of groove. The 2-song EP: some vocals have shown up to scare the listener since they're one of the most agonizing sounds one may encounter on the circuit nowadays. The music hasn't changed remaining pounding black/thrash metal now recalling Khold.

Demo Demo, 2008
Old Dirt EP, 2009

My Space

NATHRATH (GERMANY)

Instrumental black/thrash, rich on atmosphere, which to these ears sounds like a more accessible Burzum, mixed with less agressive Immortal. In other words, this is 70% black and 30% thrash, mid-paced, with doomy elements, and two majestic intro and outro.

Demotion Demo, 2007

Official Site

NATIONAL NAPALM SYNDICATE (FINLAND)

A cult thrash metal band, and for a good reason; their self-titled debut is one of the better thrash metal albums to come out of Finland. The music is often on the technical side drawing comparisons to Living Death's "World Neurosis" (including in the vocal department, having in mind the newly acquired singing style from Torsten Bergmann on that album) on the most inspired moments. "Deathwish" is a more straight-forward opener, energetic and intense, slightly hinting at something more technical. "Silent Violence" thrashes with no mercy, but the guitar decisions have already become a bit more intriguing. "Lucy" is longer, and apart from the heavy, mid-paced more technical parts, more aggressive thrashing still can be heard. "The Sunrise" is a nice little speed metal piece followed by the aggressive thrash killer "Where Fears Reign". "Ante Mortem" comes with a more technical guitar approach which doesn't get lost on the rest, and even increases, on the excellent "The Final Gathering": a fine combination of fast, aggressive and technical riffage. The guys probably needed one more offering of the same quality to reach even the mighty Stone, but they disappeared mysteriously.

Their comeback work has acquired some modern tendencies and is far less impressive than the band's strong debut, often going into a The Haunted, or a modern day Overkill direction; it's not a total waste, though, and some tracks are really cool headbanging thrashers ("Falling to Pieces", "The Cross (I Have to Bear)"). The problem is that this energy gets lost too often in the sea of slower, mid-paced, modern-sounding songs. The Untitled track at the end is less-than-2-min of intense thrashing which should have been more frequently heard here.
"Devolution Of Species" expands into other genres courting the modern trends above all. The music still has a slight thrashy edge (again the last song is the most aggressive one), but is much slower with clear gothic, even doomy pretensions ("Fist in the Air"), and at times dangerously smells more recent Sentenced. Many thrash metal fans might lose their patience long before the end, and no one would blame them. Apparently these guys have buried the thrash metal hatchet at this stage for good...

The "Lex Talionis" EP starts with the raging "The Church of the Rat" and one may find it hard to believe that these are the same guys who released a string of insipid non-thrash albums not long ago. Then comes "Planet Satan" which is more restrained, but still hard-hitting with a few infectious melodies. But that's it since the remaining 3 tracks are just very short jocund variations on crossover and hardcore without any particular musical merits.

National Napalm Syndicate Full-length, 1989
Resurrection of the Wicked Full-length, 2006
Devolution Of Species Full-length, 2009
Lex Talionis EP, 2014

Official Site

NATIONAL SUICIDE (ITALY)

Good retro thrash, recalling late 80's Overkill and the Bay-Area sound, feeling equally comfortable thrashing their souls out ("This Is A Raid"), staying in the mid-paced parametres ("Sucks n' Artillery"), or mixing both in quite an impressive way ("National Suicide"). The singer carries on in the best tradition of Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth (Overkill) and Steve "Zetro" Souza (Exodus).
"The Old Family is Alive" offers nothing new, both title and music-wise. And it's hardly necessary since the guys do a good job thrashing with gusto, staying quite close to "Fabulous Disaster" with the emblematic Steve Souza-like vocals leading the pack, doing a nice job. At times the music acquires a nice playful edge, also characteristic of the works of the Americans Ultimatum ("Nu Posers Don't Scare Anyone", "Into The Clubhouse"). The guys rely mostly on smashing mid-paced riffage and catchy choruses, a typical example of which is "The Old Family Is Still Alive", but speedy thrash monsters ("Let Me See Your Pogo", "Please Welcome...my Friends!") are not a rarity, either. A rarity are the merry go-round crossover pieces: only one of the kind ("Wanted"). At times the listener may complain that the music lacks an edge and relies too much on playful, tested formulas, but all is forgiven on the excellent intense closer "This Is A Raid", the best song on the album, a glorious Bay-Area hymn.
"Anotheround" would be a delight for the old school thrash lovers who will start jumping around immediately with the rousing opener "No Shot No Dead" which will also surprise with the brilliant lead sections. The joy continues with the more restrained, but more technical "I Refuse To Cry", and especially the surreal semi-technicaller "Scene Of The Crime" which creepy riffage would be a wonder to listen to. Then comes the title-track which is a soaring speedster of a more heroic nature. The speed/thrashing "carnival" carries on with "Fire At Will", and stops for a bit on the friendlier, power metal-based "Nobody's Coming". "What The Fuck Is Going' On" will mostly enchant with its excellent lead sections, and the final "I Have No Fear" will split heads with its fiery riffs making this album a promising new chapter in the band's discography.
"Massacre Elite" doesn't betray the chosen path the band offering the same wide palette the title-track leading the pack being an awesome headbanger although spices like the merry crossover delight "Old, White An' Italian" are also provided. "Trouble Ahead" is a glorious speed metal anthem inspiring the remainder to notch it up this highly energetic saga wrapped on by the speed/thrashing roller-coaster "What D'You Mean By Metal".

The Old Family is Still Alive Demo, 2007
The Old Family is Alive Full-Length, 2009
Anotheround Full-Length, 2016
Massacre Elite Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NATIVE INSTINCT (BELGIUM)

Based on "First Born", this band pulls out cool thrash metal obviously influenced by Slayer's late-80's period (both musically and vocally), but in order to increase the heaviness they also add doomy riffs ala Saint Vitus or Pentagram resulting in a very crushing sound. Apart from the heavy guitars one would easily find enough sharp, faster riffs for headbanging here, too. And, "Metal Heart" is not an Accept cover. Some of the musicians played in Yosh in the early/mid-90's, releasing two full-length albums with them.

Native Instinct Full-length, 2000
First Born Full-length, 2003
An Awful Rage Full-length, 2006

Official Site

NATTAS (SWEDEN)

Based on "Inde Deus Abest", these guys, two of whom are also members of the melodic death/thrashers Bibleblack, play pretty similar stuff here as well, maybe a bit slower and more varied, but following the Gothenburg model fairly closely. The "idyll" is broken in the middle by the harder (and "darker") "Darkest Hours", a really fine intense thrasher, but the rest loses the speed quite a bit settling for a moody gothic-tinged delivery to which the gruff death metal singer kind of doesn't suit very well.

Salvation EP, 2003
At Ease With The Beast Full-length, 2004
Inde Deus Abest Full-length, 2007

Official Site

NAUTIA (GREECE)

This band are one of the stalwarts on the Greek thrash/hardcore scene, and as such offer a blend of the two styles with a more melodic edge (based on the split), as the songs mix more energetic with slower riffs, as the preference is towards the speedy side of the music. If you can imagine a mixture between early Prong and D.R.I. ...

Europaiki Anagennisi Full-Length, 1991
The Naytia Horror Kinky Show Split, 199?

NAVAJDENIE (RUSSIA)

Decent power/thrash with mellow, melodic guitars; the guys shred with competence assisted by slightly thin, but convincing melodic vocals. "Groza" is a happy speed metal hymn, and the other material is just a bit more aggressive except for the two tender ballads "Polukrovka" and "Sneg i Pepel".

Polukrovka Demo, 2011

NAVALM (UKRAINE)

This is a relaxed representation of the good old thrash/crossover served in various moods, at times in a frolic punky fashion ("Let Others Pray"), at others in a brutal deathy one ("Sign"), at others in an assured Slayer-esque manner ("An Evil Time"). There are whole 15 tracks here so expect a lot of variety and above all numerous headbanging opportunities. The vocals are on the weak side, though, with their penchant to semi-shout in a guttural, not very audible, death metal way.

Recovery of Sync Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NDE (USA)

Based on "End of Trust", this band offers ordinary unimaginative groovy post-thrash. There's little energy or dynamics involved; only for groove completists.
The debut is by far the better achievement the band incorporating some stylish semi-technical riffs on the opening title-track, and bringing in hardcore to help on a few shorter ragers. Alas, the heavy groove gradually overtakes the space, and by the end the approach becomes too stale and not very exciting "Decapitate" serving a final portion of more intriguing guitar work which can also be heard on the surprisingly brutal deathster "Try" at the end. A good try indeed, but arriving too late...

Falling Full-length, 1996
Fix Full-length, 1999
End Of Trust Full-length, 2002

Official Site

NEANDERTHAL (MEXICO)

Based on "It's Hard to Believe", this band plays old school "hard to believe" thrash of the more atmospheric type with a few sudden aggressive outbursts ("Six Feet Under") akin to Hallows Eve. The music has a weird dark atmosphere thanks to the subdued guitar tone and the sinister deathy vocals. "One Night Before Die" is a modern thrash/deathster, kind of misplaced, but its awkwardness is nicely compensated by the complex piece "The Coming Death", which boasts some great Oriental tunes which give way to intense galloping riffs on the title-track. "In the Name of God" closes this short effort in a more elaborate manner with a good alternation between fast and slow passages also showing a promise for a bigger musical prowess on future releases.

It's Hard to Believe Full-length, 2007
Morbid Underground Full-length, 2012

My Space

NEAR DARK (HOLLAND)

A pleasant surprise from the Dutch underground: very good progressive thrash blending galloping melodic with proto-blasting deathy passages on the diverse opener "A Question Of Control". "The Name Of Action" starts with a nice atmospheric balladic intro before some intense semi-technical thrashing ensues followed by a short screamy lead section. "Frozen" is a dramatic shredder in mid-tempo, and the final "Rudimental Death" is an epic thrasher with jumpy riffs recalling the guys' compatriots Bifrost and respectively the Brisih legends Sabbat. The singer has a throaty semi-death metalish baritone, but doesn't have many chances to shine overshadowed by the much better music.

Near Dark Demo, 1993

Official Site

NEAR DEATH EXPERIENCE (ITALY)

One will have a "near death experience" with this album which crosses power, speed and thrash in a clever classic fashion pulling it off even on the milder material like the heavy ballad "Building Ruins", or the bluesy doomster "Clepsydra". On the rest the guys thrash with passion and a pinch of technicality: "At the Mountains of Madness", adding the casual modern flair ("E.S.P.") here and there. "Wall of Sleep" is a formidable thrashy steam-roller which comes towards the end before the quiet acoustic closer "Night Ocean" wraps it up in a not very deserved, underwhelmingly soft manner. The singer is clearly an asset with his warm high-strung voice reminiscent of Bruce Dickinson.

Threshold of Consciousness Full-Length, 2006

Official Site

NEBUKADNEZZA (UK)

The debut: this trio pulls out aggressive fast-paced thrash with not very good shouty hardcore vocals; the music is really intense with numerous death metal "decorations" (blast-beats, etc.).
"There Is No Revolution" offers more variety, still thrashing hard on at least half of the tracks, but there are a couple of slower songs, and the proto-death blast-beating passages are here, too, this time shorter and not as annoying. Although the guys offer nothing new, few would be those who would sit still while listening to unbridled aggressive bombs, like "Redefined Justice", "What A Shame" or "When Dirty Hands Touch Clean Food", representing the thrash/hardcore/grindcore hybrid in its most pristine, but also listenable form. All these tracks are placed near the end, with the closing "Infotainment" being the "cream" at the top, blasting in an utmost furious fashion. Apparently at some point the guys got pissed off, playing this longer milder material, and have gone out with all the machineguns blazing... definitely not for the squeamish.

Nebukadnezza Full-length, 2002
Onslaught Full-length, 2004
There Is No Revolution Full-length, 2009

Official Site

NEBULIZER (BRAZIL)

A classic take on crossover/thrash, with the typical 1-2 min long tracks and the traditional energetic delivery.

We Are Whipcore Thrashers Demo, 2004

Official Site

NECK SPRAIN (HUNGARY)

Heavy groovy post-thrash clinging towards Machine Head's mid-period, maybe more aggressive, but also slower with moments recalling the stoner/doom movement ("Pray", "Blinded Creed"). There's no speed or energy put here, strictly for groove lovers. The last song "Dime" is actually a cool ballad and the best song here; it's a tribute to... well, the title says it all... R.I.P.

The debut is rough jumpy hardcore-ish post-thrash which is more dynamic as a whole, but also dooms with the best ("Learn!"; the sludgy stoner winner "To Have Strength?") at times. "On The Top Of The World" is the closer here, a dreamy serene ballad not far from catching the surreal ambiguity of Black Sabbath's "Planet Caravan" which is obviously the model to follow here the gruff quarrelsome singer sounding almost unrecognizable on this one acquiring a peaceful meditative whispered tember, quite effective.

Overgain Full-Length, 1999
Heavyweight-3rd Round Full-Length, 2006

NECKBREAK NATION (HOLLAND)

Based on the full-length, this band indulge in prototypical modern thrash/death along the lines of the Gothenburg school which tries to mix the pace almost on a track-by-track basis, and to these ears the symbiosis has been achieved, especially on the cool atmospheric piece "Evolve to Six" which blends the two sides into one engaging, albeit more melodic, thrash/deathy "opera".

Warchitects EP, 2011
Stroke of the Devil's Hour Full-length, 2014

Official Site

NECKROFIGHT (HUNGARY)

This live demo offers cool retro thrash reminiscent of Forbidden's debut, energetic and speedy, with vicious Schmier-like vocals, but the singer here quite often adheres to the higher registers screaming his lungs out which is an annnoying addition and hardly necessary. The closing track is an enjoyable, faithful cover of Sex Pistols' "Anarchy in the UK".

Live at L'dfng Mvv. H'dfz Demo, 1990

NECRATAL (ARGENTINA)

Modern choppy thrash mixing heavy and faster passages in almost equal dozes, but the attempts to blend both styles into one song ruins the energetic tone of some of them. In the 2nd half the guys apparently get tired and slide down to more repetitive, mid-paced formulas. "Marcado En Tu Piel" would be a rude awakening being a much more energetic thrasher except for the balladic stretch in the middle; which carries the force after it sweeping the next "Gran Herida", another vigorous piece, and partially the closing "Penumbras" which at some point introduces the characteristic pounding riffage of late-80's Slayer before the infectious galloping riffs wrap it up nicely later on. The classic shadow of thrash is felt here and there, apparently provided by Fabi'en Ruiz, the Paganos guitarist who may bring more retro moments for the future if staying longer with the band.

Envuelto en Llamas Full-length, 2011

Official Site

NECROBASTARD (CHILE)

Based on the "Suicide Resurrection" demo, this act offers a decent mixture of thrash, black and death metal (mostly reflected in the brutal vocals) which hesitates between heavier mid-tempo and more intense up-tempo passages which alternate the whole time to a somewhat monotonous effect. That's why "Oscuro Final" would be a delight with its raging blasting rhythms which influence the final "Suicide Resurrection", a pure death metal crazer.

Crushing Christianity Demo, 2009
Suicide Resurrection Demo, 2010

My Space

NECROCHAKAL (GREECE)

These Greeks offer aggressive thrash/death which blends the German school with more brutal blast-beating passages the resulting "therapy" coming close to the exploits of Torture Squad, Thanatos, and Defleshed. Ethereal semi-technical death metal seems to shine the brightest on cuts like "In the Name of Bestiality" and the epic bombarder "Impetuous Profanation". "Maniac Eerie Worship" is pure blasting "manic" madness, and the final "Kingdom of Blasphemous Thorns" is obviously a leftover from an old demo of theirs served with a very muddy sound quality, another brutal death metal-ornated cut. The sinder is an agonizing deathy shouter who really strains his lungs hard to produce those suffering rendings.

Profanation of the Gods EP, 2014

NECRODAMUS (USA)

This act was formed after another one: the doom/sludgers Ultralord, split up. Based on the EP: no traces of sludge here, at least not that obvious, but doom is quite well covered, even at times taking over the sleepy creepy slow thrash which can be heard, supported by raspy black-ish vocals, which in their turn are "accompanied" by dramatic clean semi-operatic ones.

"No Rest for the Wizard" will be quite a surprise being a much more dynamic affair, at least in the beginning, thrashing in an abrasive heavy manner with the first songs being fairly satisfying energetic headbangers. The tempo, however, expectedly slows down later and doom metal steps in to dominate the album even taking funeral proportions on the sprawling epic "Two Ton Hammers of Metal".

Necrodamus EP, 2004
No Rest for the Wizard Full-length, 2007

Official Site

NECRODEAD (CHILE)

Based on "Frustrated Message", this band play good technical thrash/death metal, quite fast and vicious at times reminding of Hellwitch and Atheist on the more hectic moments, a nice change of tempos, and fine deviations from the pattern (the opener "Rebelious Feeling" is a very good moody, slow, technical number). "Cultural Elimination" speeds up, but only a little remaining in the slower confines. The real aggression begins with "Fatal Existencia", and the rest contains some of the better moments from the South American technical thrash/death metal scene of the 90's. Striking melodies you might find here, both in the riff and the lead guitar department. The vocals are along the lines the aforementioned bands: unholy semi-shrieks, at times semi-whispered. "Nevrose" is a graceful 1-min acoustic instrumental.

"Path To Dead" is another decent, albeit not as striking, achievement, but the big hiatus more than shows. Sadly, from a technical point-of-view it doesn't deliver much. This is pretty cool retro speed/thrash which doesn't really resemble the more aggressive debut. It's spiced with numerous laid-back moments like the carefree crossover cut "Only Rock" or the heavy/power metal "insanity" "Wild Insanity". The thrash is of the mellow mid-tempo type ("Left To Live", "Mansu's Bitch") and isn't very exciting. The singer has reduced his aggressive singing style quite a bit and now sounds like a more melodic Schmier (think the German's vocals on the Headhunter albums). Still, as a work of varied classic metal this album won't be a disappointment and would surely win the guys new fans outside the thrash/death metal spectre.

Frustrated Message Full-length, 1994
Rust EP, 1997
Path To Dead Full-length, 2007

Official Site

NECRODEATH (ITALY)

Arguably the finest Italian thrash metal band; their debut is a raw brutal combination of thrash, black and proto-death, quite inspired and edgy, obviously influenced by the relentless speed moshing of Kreator's "Pleasure to Kill" and the outrageous blask/thrash aesthetics of Sarcofago's "I.N.R.I.", nicely occupying the "go-between" position between same year's Protector's pioneering death metal work "Misanthropy" and the more extreme side of European thrash (Kreator, Sodom, Messiah); all songs are played at lightning speed, topped by vicious black-ish vocals.

2 years later the band sounded a lot tighter, with a much better polished sound, tinged with black/proto-death metal again, standing proud to same year's extreme thrash masterpieces like Kreator's "Extreme Aggression", Sacred Reich's "Ignorance", and Evildead's "Annihilation of Civilization". Their style was very appealing, and looked pretty much in pace with what was going on the extreme metal scene at that time, but the guys left this project behind for the sake of one thrash/crossover album under the name of Mondocane in 1990, a joint effort with Schizo members after which some of the musicians were seen in other Italian metal acts through the years: Sadist, Raza de Odio, etc. "Mater Of All Evil" is truly one of the best comeback albums made of the past 10 years, showing that despite the long absence the band haven't lost their touch to play high quality thrash/black metal. "Black as Pitch" continued in the same vein, but "Ton(e)s of Hate" was a disappointment to an extent, offering a more melodic slower approach, with more nods (and "ton(e)s") to black metal. "100% Hell" was a furious slab of thrash metal, the band's most intense, and arguably best, effort, coming the closest to the band's 80's material from their new output, a really fine piece of hard-hitting thrash at its classic best.

"Draculea" starts and finishes with long atmospheric, symphonic instrumentals (quite good, by the way), but what comes between them is not bad although compared to the explosive "100% Hell" this effort by all means falls short. The band do not betray their potent mixture of aggression and technicality: fast, intense tracks take turns with slower, black-tinged ones, which this time are a bit more than the good taste allows, and for the fans of Venom there is a cool cover version of their hymn "Countess Bathory". The cover is surprisingly put in the middle of the album, followed by the excellent instrumental "The Golden Cup", boasting great lead guitars.
After the shaky "Draculea" it was necessary for the band to come up with something better in order to keep their place on the front row of thrash among the ever growing competition, and "Phylogenesis" could be considered that "something" although to these ears it again leaves "something" to be desired. It starts with the brutal, almost grinding at times "Awakening Of Dawn", after which "something" slower, but quite interesting and technical, this way comes: the dark atmospheric and winding "I.N.R.I.". Then the furious thrashing continues with "The Theory". Time for more atmosphere of the doomy variety with "Extreme Emotional Shock" which nicely starts as a ballad. "Time Never Dies" softens the album even more, being a mid-paced semi-balladic composition; a raging thrashy section is included somewhere in the middle, but it only serves to confuse the listener. "Propitiation Of The Gods" is better with a cool mix between faster and slower passages, and a good Oriental theme; the 2nd half is doomy thrash with the speed completely gone once again. "Cloned World" is a pleasant surprise: good aggressive technical thrash, but "Persuasive Memory" slows down for the upteenth time, with the obligatory fast technical break later on which this time is well chosen, and saves the track from being another calm mid-paced doomy thrasher. The final "Final War" is 7-min of decent mid-tempo thrash, partially excused by the very good leads. As a whole this release is not too different from the previous one with the slower material again being the predominant, seeing the guys consolidating a style which tries to please more than the average thrash metal fan, but this "marriage" between Orient-inclined melody and technicality, without the intensity and aggression of previous releases present, needs more refinement and a bit more edge.

Just when one thought that the somewhat annoying cover mania is gone completely, comes a band, an old-timer at that, to bring it back. "Old Skull" begins with a re-mastered version of "Mater Tenebrarum" from the debut, before the cover downpour which is open with a pretty faithful cover of Slayer's "Black Magic", followed by Bathory ("Raise the Dead", also faithful), Kreator ("Pleasure to Kill", done in a furious super-fast manner, a good decision), Black Sabbath ("Paranoid", faithful again, except for the vocals), Sodom ("Sodomy and Lust", a very intense rendition with a death metal shade, good stuff with nice Tom Angelripper-like vocals), Venom ("Bloodlust", done in a carefree heavy/power metal fashion, not bad), Motorhead (1000 Euro for the one who guesses which cover that is... come on, it's "Ace of Spades" again!, well done in a brisk speedy way), Diamond Head ("Am I Evil?", done more faithfully than the Metallica cover staying closer to the edgy heavy metal style of the original, except for the shocking blasting section which comes out of nowhere at some point). The end is in the form of "Mater Tenebrarum", but this time this is the original with the raw primitive sound and the evil attitude. This is professionally done and all, but there's always one question coming up in such cases: does the scene really need those tributes?

"Idiosyncrasy": wow, the guys are on fire recently releasing albums every year, and although the quality has diminished a bit since the eponymous "100% Hell", and the previous offering was a hardly necessary covers-only compilation, it's always worth it to check what the band have cooked. There's inevitably some conceptuality going on with all the compositions having no titles, just designating parts from a bigger whole which starts in a heavy, mid-tempo manner with "Part I", before "Part II" adds some life with a portion of faster guitars. "Part III" is a similar mix of fast and slow rhythms, but "Part IV" will drown you in seismic, doomy riffage, which will last for another 6-min on "Part V". "Part VI" would be a more invigorating number with a slab of galloping passages with the closing part another pleasant listen, a fine combination of enchanting melodies and fierce guitars, graced by a high-octane doomy exit. This effort is way better than its not very impressive predecessor, to a large extent due to the prevalent dark atmosphere and the refined moments from "Phylogenesis". There's nothing technical to be heard this time, but the band were never in for technicality in the first place, and those who have already gotten accustomed to the less extreme face of the band, which they have been consistently displaying for the past four years, would be happy all over.

"The 7 Deadly Sins" is the next chapter from the now lengthy band catalogue, and the guys waste no time nailing the listener down from the very beginning with the brisk opener "Sloth" which is anything but a "sloth", albeit being a bit misleading since again the band have decided to widen the scope of their repertoire, for better or worse. The saga continues with the atmospheric creeper "Lust" which thrashes out with passion at some point. Then comes "Envy" with its formidable mid-paced riffs, but when "Pride" serves exactly the same "meal", the fan will start frowning since this is already too radio-friendly to warm the hearts of the hard-boiled thrashers. Not to worry since right after arrives the short "Wrath" which is brutal to the point of deathiness, but it hardly sets an example to be followed by the remaining numbers which are more on the more complex side elaborating the delivery all the way to "Thanatoid" which is a wild headbanger ably supported by the closer "Graveyard of the Innocents", a prime thrash/deathster, a reworked version of the same song from the debut, a glorious reminder of what these stalwarts were once capable of. More of those next time...

Into the Macabre Full-length, 1987
Fragments of Insanity Full-length, 1989
Mater of All Evil Full-length, 1999
Black as Pitch Full-length, 2001
Ton(e)s of Hate Full-length, 2003
100% Hell Full-length, 2006
Draculea Full-Length, 2007
Phylogenesis Full-length, 2009
Old Skull Full-length, 2010
Idiosyncrasy Full-length, 2011
The 7 Deadly Sins Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NECRODEMON (USA)

This band rose from the ashes of thrash metal formation Lordes Werre. Based on "Ice Fields Of Hyperion", this is thrash/death metal similar to the Americans Usurper: Tom G. Warrior-like vocals, heavy Celtic Frost-influenced riffs mixed with brutal death metal. "Frozen Sorceror (Chant Of Making V)" is a particularly nice touch: an excellent offbeat melodic instrumental piece with a classy lead guitar.

"Rise of the Supernatural" sees the gang sticking to their guns and the fans shouldn't be disappointed with this sincere classic downpour which alternates between brutal fats cuts and slower macabre tunes some of which ("Mausoleum") come with pleasant melodic hooks. Mentioning melody, it comes in abundance elsewhere the leads also helping ("Eidola of the Rising Ground...") in this trend at times. Short blacky hyper-blasters like "...a Paranormal Intrusion" are a rarity, but serve their purpose in making this effort the diverse "animal" it was purported to be, especially when "Grim" closes the album with sinister atmospheric performance also aggravated by ethereal ambient sounds at the end.

The debut is a crushing affair which marches forward with seismic merciless riffs which recall Bolt Thrower in their determined battle-like flair ("The Summoning") that permeates the whole album and doesn't leave too much room for thrash to show off. "Rip" is a cool reminder of mid-period Bathory, another display of officiant, almost epic-sounding musicianship which is also full of catchy memorable melodic licks (check out the closer "The Asp").

Haunted Eons Full-length, 1999
Non-Divine EP, 2001
Incipit Fear EP, 2003
Allegiance to the End Full-length, 2003
Ice Fields of Hyperion Full-length, 2006
Reclamation of the Stygian Throne EP, 2009
Black Art Revenge EP, 2012
Rise of the Supernatural Full-length, 2014

Official Site

NECROFACTOR (CHILE)

Based on the full-length, this band play modern thrash/death which covers all tempos often relying on choppy, proto-groovy rhythms ("Cancer") which still work well with the more aggressive material ("No Obedecer"). "Animal" is a good way to capture a more progressive sound the band even finding the way to a more energetic play in the 2nd half.

Instintos EP, 2007
Ciclo de Destrucción Full-length, 2016

Official Site

NECROFAGO (BRAZIL)

Brazil has a huge contribution to the formation of the extreme metal genres in the 90's. Based on the "Desire for Blood" demo, these guys take no prisoners with their brutal, fast thrash/proto-death metal. The musicianship isn't on a very high level, and the sound is a bit messy, but it should work all right for fans of early Messiah and the pleiad of mid-80's acts from Brazil: Sarcofago, Vulcano, Sextrash, Holocausto, etc.

Desire for Blood Demo, 1987
Brutal Mutilation Demo, 1988
Rehearsal Demo, 1988

NECROFILI (ITALY)

This Italian formation indulge in diverse modern power/thrash with progressive elements, with some of the weirdest vocals ever; the guy behind the mike just "croaks" in a very characteristic witch-like manner, still comprehensively, though. The compositions are combinations of riffs and moods the melody playing a big role on almost every one of them, especially on the more carefully-crafted ones like "Evilution" and "D-Generation". "Death Warranty" is a short imposing stomper with a speedy ending, and "Allahu Akbar" is an 8.5-min extravaganza with Oriental motifs and doomy overtones. More diversity later with the epic speedster "Banshee Scream" and the friendly power metal closer "The Dark Side Of My Soul". The band are not sure yet which direction to take, but even if carrying on in the same varied manner they should be able to find their audience... if, of course, one can get used to those eccentric vocals.

The End Of Everything Full-Length, 2017

NECROFILIA NEFASTA (COLOMBIA)

This is raw unpolished thrash/proto-death which is quite noisy to really please the ears although the guys show some skills in the musical department trying to blend hard-hitting moments with more melodic ones as in both cases the main performer is the bassist who supports the proceedings the whole time with a thundering echo. Later the guys changed their name to I.N.R.I. and released another demo in 1992 of a more brutal death metal-ish sound.

Demo Demo, 1990

NECROFOBIA (BRAZIL)

Modern 90's post-thrash not miles away from Sepultura's "Chaos AD", but less aggressive; the heavy, smashing riffs are intercepted by some good headbangers ("Placebo", "Punch"), but this happens seldom and the guys are quite faithful to the music of their peers most of the time. The lead guitar is quite good, but unfortunately it's not given much room here.

Dead Soul Full-length, 2004

Official Site

NECROFUCKER (PERU)

A very raw sound quality leaves little to be heard from this messy aggressive mix of thrash and death metal coming with a very buzzy guitar noise and rough declamatory death metal vocals. The delivery is often just cacophonic sounds on top of each other, something like a distant echo of a very early Messiah with an interesting lead motif which is the only more clearly heard element. Needless to say, only for completists... The guys are alive and well under a new name: Anal Vomit, where the style is an intense mix of black and death metal reflected in three full-lengths and one EP.

Demencia Precoz Demo, 1989

NECROLISIS (COSTA RICA)

Based on the first demo, this band pulls out classic thrash of the energetic type, close to the early German school, with simplistic speedy riffs and a slightly thin guitar sound which, however, can't stay on the way of the good lead guitarist who takes quite a space ("Cirugfa Infernal") at times, and for a good reason. The singer isn't really an asset with his throaty semi-hardcore tember.

Necrolisis Demo, 2006
Deathblast from the Center of Hell Split, 2008
Necrolisis/Demonthrone Split, 2008

My Space

NECROLOGY (HOLLAND)

A 3-songer of dark morose thrash/death which is uneven semi-bash for at least half the time the guys grudging in a dirge-like funereal fashion with extremely fuzzy guitars and ultimately deep guttural death metal vocals. The music takes off for a bit ("Cross And Plough") near the end, but overall this recording could hardly pass for anything above the rehearsal stage.

Cross and Plough Demo, 1993

NECROLUST (BRAZIL)

Based on the debut demo, these Brazilians are surely one of the most extreme acts to come out of this country. What we have here is vicious misanthropic black/thrash/death, sounding well more aggressive than the early efforts of their compatriots Sarcofago and Volcano. The tempo is quite fast, with only "The Apocalypse" trying to slow down in a stomping Celtic Frost-like manner. Musical merits are, of course, out of the question, and at this stage such kind of music was producing just a bit more than the casual laugh.

Live in Feira de Santana Demo, 1990
Christ's Excommunication Demo, 1991

NECROMANCER (BRAZIL)

Based on the "Victims of Deranged Maneuverings" demo, this act offers aggressive Slayer-esque old school thrash, mixing the fury of "Reign in Blood" with the heavy doom-laden sound of the Americans' late-80's period. The vocals are more brutal than the ones of Tom Araya, clinging towards the shouty death metal field. Some of the band members are also involved in the black metal act Mysteriis.

The "Dark Church" demo is only two songs which are long and complex, but there's no technical play involved, just direct Slayer-esque bashing getting more aggressive on occasion bordering on death metal. The sound quality is awful making the guitars sound as one big mess at times topped by husky impotent vocals which at their best try to reach the intensity of Schmier.

Demo I Demo, 1986
Dark Church Demo, 1987
Science of Fear Demo, 1993
Victims of Deranged Maneuverings Demo, 1996

NECROMANCER (FINLAND)

Based on the two 1988 demos, this band offer really good energetic thrash reminiscent of early Destruction, but the music here is faster. Demo II contains an enjoyable cover of the Judas Priest early hit "Rocka Rolla".

Rehearsal Demo, 1987
Demo I Demo, 1988
Demo II Demo, 1988
Downfall / Liquid Sky EP, 1990
Retromancer Best of/Compilation, 2001
The Ultimate Stuff-Part 1 Best of/Compilation, 2002
The Ultimate Stuff-Part 2 Best of/Compilation, 2002

NECROMANCIA (BRAZIL)

A band who stick to the 90's Sepultura sound ("Chaos AD", "Roots", in particular) with a lot of groove and the other typical for the 90's gimmicks. The debut is probably the better effort still contaning pleasant classic surprises (the cool galloper "No Way Out"; the jolly thrash/speedster "...And The History Unfolding") among the heavy post-thrash riffage which delivers the goods coming with the necessary amount of energy. "Hypnotic" is a very cool touch: an abstract technical 2-min instrumental with a surreal Voivod-ish shade, and the closing "Memories Of An Accident" is a nice, more thought-out piece with semi-balladic overtones and fine lead guitar work. The singer is a bit angry, but has the requisite emotional pitch to stay on par with the cool musical delivery.

Necromancia Full-length, 1996
Check Mate Full-length, 2001

NECROMANCING THE STONE (USA)

Members of modern, melodic death metal acts like Arsis, The Black Dahlia Murder, and The Absence have joint efforts for the release of this full-length sees these seasoned professionals unleash energetic retro power/speed/thrash which not surprisingly impresses with its flashy guitar work ("Bleed for the Night") and the really "crushing" intense opener "Crusher". "The Descent" is a rousing epic hymn, and "The Siren's Call" is an all-out speedster. The aternation between the two kinds of approach continues till the end as in the 2nd half the sound softens recalling the Yngwie Malmsteen lyricisms on "Rotted Reunion". "Unfinished Business" indeed reminds that some "unfinished business" has left with its impetuous hard-hitting riffage; and the guys wake up for one more speed/thrashing challenge before the end with the smashing Atrillery-sque "From Graves to Infamy". The singer is a find with his versatile clean baritone which often hits the higher registers with ease creating a lot of atmosphere.

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead EP, 2014
Jewel of the Vile Full-length, 2016

Official Site

NECROMANCY (CANADA)

Based on the "In the Eyes Of Death" demo, this act provides pretty aggressive for the time thrash/proto-death which is a rough, but listenable, mix of fast brutal sections and slower stomping ones the former coming close to the raw unbridled spirit of their compatriots Sacrifice's debut. The singer is a scary death metal rasper whose rending antics can't be deciphered easily, but this is hardly what the fan would concentrate on listening to this raw spontaneous "outbreak of evil".

Demo #2 Demo, 1986
In the Eyes Of Death Demo, 1986

NECROMANCY (GREECE)

Based on the "Visions of Lunacy" demo, this is aggressive raw thrash/death metal which sounds way more brutal than the similar attempts at extreme music made by their much more renowned compatriots Flames. The sound quality is below par, but one will have no problems recognizing the Sodom cover of "Outbreak of Evil" in the middle. Sadly the rest is one not very intelligible mish-mash with the drums put too much up front stifling the other instruments; where they fail to kill the sound completely, the damage is done by the gruff low-tuned brutal vocals coming as a very unrehearsed version of Reto Wilhelm "Tschsi" Knhne, the early Messiah singer. The bass is handled by the omnipresent Morbid aka The Magus who later took part in other acts from the black/death metal spectre: Rotting Christ, Septic Flesh, Thou Art Lord, Diabolos Rising, etc.

Rehearsal Demo, 1988
Visions of Lunacy Demo, 1989

NECROMANCY (SWEDEN)

This band specialize in a diverse mixture of black, speed and thrash the three styles served in relatively equal dozes thrash metal slightly left aside for the sake of the more carefree early Exciter-esque delivery which dominates the album. The guys march on with a muffled sound quality which leaves the drums too hollow-sounding and not synchronized with the guitars at times. The band try to spice their approach with more elaborate compositions (the messy doom/black/thrash oddity "Through Dreams Through Realms"), but the results are disastrous with chaotic musicianship and a little meaningful cooperation between the participants. Still, those longer numbers keep coming to a further negative effect the last string of more immediate cuts improving the situation a bit which, unfortunately, can't be said about the awful death/blacky shouty singer who deafens everything when in action. The band members' other exploits also include the death metallers Lamentation and Putrid.

Ananta Aradhana Full-Length, 2012

Official Site

NECROMANCY (USA)

Based on the first demo, Necromancy play very good thrash with a certain aggressive edge, not too far from Slayer's "Hell Awaits" and Possessed's "Seven Churches". "Nuclear Legions" could be classified as one of the first proto-death tracks based on its furious nature. Like many other bands who showed considerable potential on an underground level these guys never got to the official-release stage.

Demo 1 Demo, 1986
Cremation Demo, 1986

NECROMANSY (USA)

Based on the "Cremation" demo, these obscures provide fast vicious thrash/proto-death metal which for the time of release is pretty brutal stuff with forceful semi-death metal vocals which sound quite convincing and scary at this early stage. The guys bash with power adding the odd slower break ("Magic Circle") ala Slaughter, but most of the time they march forward with no mercy with a slight hardcore shade ("Cremation").

The debut demo is the beginning of the band's violent career; it already shows a brutal act intent on taking a prominent part in the shaping of death metal including in the vocal department where the guy rends his throat with passion. At this early stage the approach is more on the bashing corey side, and some pieces ("Nuclear Legions") are just a handshake from reaching the extreme easthetics of the early Cryptic Slaughter "exploits". The sound quality is pretty pristine, but doesn't impede the inspired delivery that much.

Demo 1 Demo, 1986
Live Demo, 1986
Rehearsal Demo, 1986
Cremation Demo, 1986

My Space

NECROMESIS (BRAZIL)

This formation offer jumpy technical modern thrash which is also helped by the very good sound quality. It would be hard for the listener to predict what will follow since the guys move from choppy quasi-industrial to blazing thrash/death metal in no time pulling things out with dry sterile guitar work and several stylish decisions (check out the great melodic leads on the playful funky instrumental at the end "O Ovo"). The singer spoils the picture a bit with his indifferent subdued death metal tone forcing his throat for a more regular presence.

Evolving To An Underworld EP, 2011

Official Site

NECROMESSIAH (ITALY)

Reportedly the band played evil black metal on earlier works. Based on "Antiklerical Terroristik Death Squad", this is an enjoyable mixture of black and thrash metal, quite close to the Swedes Bewitched, but more aggressive, with some of the black metal blast-beats, which could have been a considerable part of their past, still present at times. Otherwise the music is not very aggressive, but delivers the goods and has this playful rock-ish attitude also typical for the works of veterans like Exciter and Motorhead. Some of the band members also "drink" more with the classic speed/thrash metal formation Alkoholizer.

"...Instar Gladii In Corporem Christi" starts with an excerpt from the very often exploited theme from "Karmina Burana" mixed with Satanic chants (presumably: they're in Latin, and my Latin isn't very good anymore), after which starts evil mid to up-tempo black/thrash, quite close to the Canadians Megiddo and early Bathory. Some songs are ruined by misplaced unnecessary blast-beats, and "Desecration Of Virgin Part I" is a good nod to the epic/viking black/thrash of Bathory's "Blood, Fire, Death". "1349" is a jollier take on the viking/epic theme with not many ties to black or thrash.

"The Last Hope of Humanity" is another nod to the old school this time concentrating on the jolly speed/proto-thrashy side of the genre except for the few misplaced blast-beating passages here and there. The more inspired, but still fairly basic and proto-amateurish, thrashing reaches the climax in the middle reflected in longer numbers ("PedoPriest") which again suffer from the wild blasting breaks which are hardly necessary. Some crust arrives with the short energizer "Kill the Pope" as well as the frolic merry-go-round style of Motorhead with "Don't Touch My Glass". The final damage, however, is done with the crushing headbanger "Unleash Disorder" and the closing speedster "Goat & Roll!!". This album is more optimistic than the band's earlier recordings, but it still has something preserved from the "necro" aesthetics which the guy set so well a few years back.

...Instar Gladii In Corporem Christi Full-length, 2004
f0 Antiklerical Terroristik Death Squad Full-length, 2007
Get Ready.... EP, 2009
Unleash Disorder EP, 2012
The Last Hope of Humanity Full-length, 2013

Official Site

NECROMORTEN (BRAZIL)

Classic thrash metal played with a good sense of both melody and sharpness; the guys lash with speed adhering to sparce black metal borrowings ("Iron & Steel"), or the odd more atmospheric section ("Propagator of Pain"). "The Ridiculous Way" is an exemplary speed/thrasher with great melodic leads, and the following number is a vigorous take on thrash/crossover ("Transgressor"). Then comes another lesson in speed/thrash metal: "The Son of God" in the best spirit of early Angel Dust, before the full-on thrash attacks "Liberty" and "Godslayer" take over. "The Conqueror Worm" is merciless thrash to the bone as well, and it's on the penultimate "hymn" "Hymn" that one can hear more moderate mid-paced guitars. The aptly-titled closer "Thrash Metal" can't possibly be anything else, but straight-ahead retro thrash, and it's exactly that: fast uncompromising stuff with lashing guitars, a heavy stomping mid-break, and a few catchy choruses to which the husky black-ish vocals suit quite well. This is another capable addition from Brazil to the growing legions of retro thrashers of recent years, and although as such they don't run too much from the Germanic trends which quite a few of their compatriots have been following steadily for the past few years (Violator, Farscape, Fallout, to name a few), the inspired attitude, the proficient musicianship, and last but not least, the crystal clear sound quality, are guarantees that the guys will not sink without a trace.

Warfuse Full-length, 2010

NECRONAUT (CANADA)

Good energetic classic thrash in the tradition of Slayer and Sepultura; this is cool headbanging stuff with slight touches of death metal in the guitar department ("Immaculate Deception") and two vocals "quarreling" throughout, both of the death metal type: one lower, the other higher. The second half is more diverse, but still intriguing: "Cold" is a cool (not "cold") deviation from the hard-hitting pattern, being a slower, but also more technical number with awkward clean vocals spoiling the picture a bit. "Vengeance", which follows right after, is an exercise in groovy thrash in the Pantera vein and is the only unmitigated failure here. "Grey DK" features the finest guitar work, but is Gothenburg-influenced, not too far from At the Gates at their best.

Dawn of Damnation Begins Full-Length, 2003

NECRONOMICHRIST (USA)

Based on the EP, these guys play an ambitious mixture of thrash, death and black metal which recalls both Bal-Sagoth and the Austrian avantgardists Korova (their debut, in particular). The delivery is both melodic and technical with plenty of tempo changes, a fairly dynamic listen with the typical blast-beats and orchestral arrangements the latter making it sound a bit convoluted at times although there are no flaws whatsoever on hectic technical death/thrashers like "Rise of The Geth", or multi-layered opuses like the closing "Tree Of Doubt" which covers all the moods and nuances heard previously wrapping them up in an enchanting main keyboard theme.
"Apparitions of the Obscene" is another larger-than-life affair where quite a few styles cross the enchanting Oriental motifs leading the pack assuredly recalling Orphaned Land and Melechesh. The tempos change the whole time, but thrash isn't given much space the overall approach now reminiscent of the Greeks Septicflesh.

Harlequin Fetus Full-length, 2007
The Intimacy of Armageddon EP, 2009
Apparitions of the Obscene Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NECRONOMICON (GERMANY)

The band's self-titled debut is not far from the Minotaur's, both often regarded as the two weakest thrash metal debuts from the German metal field. "Apocalyptic Nightmare" is a much better effort staying very close to early Destruction, and more particularly "Infernal Overkill" and "Eternal Devastation"; a resemblance further aggravated by the Schmier-like vocals. It sounds so close to those two that you might find yourself recalling this and that riff, from which Destruction song it might have been borrowed. Nevertheless, this is a great headbanging attack with mighty sharp riffs and fast tempos, and long tracks, something which is again modelled after their mighty peers. The only thing which differs this album from its models, is the slow, melodic "In Memory" which is actually a tendency run by the band, to include at least one softer track on their works. However, this one is quickly cancelled by the immediate follower "Retributive Stroke": an aggressive fast riff-fest at its finest. The closing "The Following Century" tries to break the speedy pattern by adding slower, more moderate, breaks and admirably succeeds coming up with more complex, almost progressive arrangements: a "tool" which very soon found a fuller realisation.

Depending on the taste, some might find "Escalation" the band's finest hour although the Destruction worshippers have by all means left their hearts with the previous one. The Destruction shadow can be felt here as well, but not as strongly: the Volker "Freddy" Fredrich vocals have taken a more hoarse blend, delineating him from Schmier, the music also taking a turn away from their colleagues, greatly expressed with the smashing speed/thrashing opener "Death Toll": arguably the band's best achievement. "Dirty Minds" is the obligatory melodic, rock-ish track, but after it the assault continues unabated although the sharp steel riffage from the preceding album has been replaced by a more melodic, but also quite effective, one. "Cold Ages" is a marvellous closer, returning to the more complex arrangements of "Death Toll" and "The Following Century", containing a brilliant lead passage in the middle, and great fast tempos. Despite the warm acceptance which this album received universally, the guys split up.

"Screams" came out of nowhere at a time when a few fans remembered who these guys were, and was a very good slab of classic thrash; hats down to the guys for not betraying the classic sound, and being able to come up with some fine headbangers ("Final Course", "Just Say No", the great smashing thrasher "Irreversible Destruction", which also boasts the finest guitar work on the album) to stir the frozen thrash metal fans' blood. The music, however, isn't as hard-hitting as before and sounds close to the new Schmier formation Headhunter (hey, these guys can not get rid of those comparisons!). The choruses are quite catchy making the songs memorable, with an individual face. "Bitter Sweet Perversion" serves as the soft, melodic track although it doesn't sound much softer than the rest, having in mind the not as intense nature of the other material; or maybe this is the jolly crossover "Crushing Defeat"? Or the nice acoustic ballad "Ruins (They Will Cry Tomorrow)" where you will hear Fredrich delivering the best vocals a thrash metal vocalist has ever come up with on a ballad. And finally, as a finishing touch, a short flirtation with the modern groovy sound ("Groovy Mouth"), still served with a solid doze of classic thrash riffage. Alas, the times were not right for the old school sound to return, and the band vanished once again.

6 years later Necronomicon reminded of themselves with a cool 4-track demo containing three songs of classic German thrash with vocals sounding very close to Schmier (it's the same singer), and one jolly crossover number; this looked like testing the soil before the guys strike with something new, but it took another four long years before this "something" appeared.
"Construction Of Evil" came in the same way as "Screams": unheralded, but this time the time was chosen more appropriately. The music on the new one is once again closer to early Destruction than anything that the band have done in the not so distant past, and is a truly impressive old school thrash attack from beginning to end. Well, the tradition has been preserved, and here comes "Alight": the melodic pause, always present on the band's works, but this time harder showing its teeth here and there. "Fireball" shows some balladic tendencies in the beginning, but it fails to turn into the next quiet "stop" on the way, later continuing in a more aggressive manner. "Terrorist Attack" reminds of the more elaborate compositions, featured on the early efforts, but the guys' desire to keep on thrashing with no mercy (check also the 1.5 outbreak "Insanity" which follows right after this one), leaves this process half-finished. Having returned with style on the scene, it would be interesting to see what the continuation of the Necronomicon saga will be...

"Revenge of the Beast" appears a bit later for the band to keep the inertia, but shows them in a good inspired form again. The style continues exactly in the vein of the previous effort: energetic fast-paced thrash without any surprises if we exclude the very unexpected ballad "One Universe" at the end, quite tender and with very appropriate vocal performance, but enjoyable and consistent nonetheless. There are slower passages on some tracks as well as the odd more laid-back thrashers ("Who Dies?", "Refuge") in the middle where the singer Volker "Freddy" Fredrich even tries more melodic vocals as opposed to his prevalent vicious meaner Schmier-like delivery.

"Invictus" is another "beast" from the German Lovecraftians, which squashes with the opening duo ("Invictus" & "Unleashed"), both energetic speed/thrashers with sure-handed nods to speed metal, an innovation which later brings other "fruit": those same nods later take a more complete form, and the songs become more speed metal-oriented, bringing the sound close to early Blind Guardian, and Paradox's "Electrify" and Kreator's "Horder of Chaos" from the more recent works. To some this new tendency may be a desirable one, but the truth is that the guitar intensity has been decreased, and the melodic licks have become way more frequent ("Upon Black Wings", the obligatory ballad/semi-ballad near the end "Before the Curtain Falls"), to these ears still for the better. More intense thrash comes on the closing "Possessed By Evil", but overall this is a milder offering also reflected in the more friendly vocals of Fredrich which are overall more expressive and cleaner reminiscent of Dirk Schroder (Iron Angel, but think the gruffer less polished ones on "Hellish Crossfire").
"Pathfinder... Between Heaven and Hell": the retro speed metal saga carries on here with thrash superseded by power metal on most of the tracks which lack the catchiness of the previous material. "Inside The Fire" tries to justify the "fire" part of its title and succeeds in banging the heads which will stand still listening bewildered to the hitty heavy/power metal anthem "Reborn" following suit. And that's it pretty much since the rest of this effort recalls the more recent works of Accept and Grave Digger not having much to do with the band's early glorious days.

Necronomicon Full-length, 1986
Apocalyptic Nightmare Full-length, 1987
Escalation Full-length, 1988
Screams Full-length, 1994
Construction of Evil Full-length, 2004
Revenge of the Beast Full-Length, 2008
Invictus Full-length, 2012
Pathfinder... Between Heaven and Hell Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NECRONOMICON (JAPAN)

This Japanese outfit plays classic death metal with hints at thrash and a couple of more technical "ornamentations". The music recalls Morbid Angel quite a bit as well as other Floridian acts. When the music slows down ("Instinct", "Feed") it starts making more sense being both more thrashy and technical. The singer is a scary death growler, clearly one of the most brutal singers nowadays.

II : Born Again Full-length, 2005

Official Site

NECRONOMICON BEAST (BRAZIL)

Another cool thrash metal band from the very prolific these days Brazilian scene; the band's style is a cross between early Whiplash and Exorcist (there is a nice cover of that band's "Death By Bewitchment" at the end) plus classic heavy metal tunes (" The Book Of The Necronomicon") and a strange track which sounds like someone is playing a computer game ("Make War, Not Love").
"Sowers of Discord" arrives after a lengthy 9-year hiatus, but the guys haven't forgotten how to entertain the masses, and their staple roller-coaster thrash is pretty much intact with the addition of more aggressive black-ish elements (the odd hyper-blast, etc.) here and there. The production is more boosted and crisper now and the guitars have a more biting edge. The band relax at times with the casual more laid-back power/speedy rhythm ("We're Against"; the slower more melodic "The Fourth Reich") before the galvanizing riffs of "Vril" "bury" you deep. The thrashy barrage returns in the 2nd half with "Oracao Ao Diabo" and "About Zombies" and stays until the end becoming nicely more technical on the more complex shredder "World Assured Destruction". This is a fairly decent follow-up for the guys who should remind of themselves more often if they don't want to be one of the most obscure underground heroes in South America.

Hell Thrash War Full-length, 2004
Sowers of Discord Full-Length, 2013

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NECROPANTHER (USA)

This band offer a modern blend fo trash and death metal with screechy, blacky witch-like vocals which may get on the nerves due to their omnipresent character. The music by all means makes more sense crossing the Swedish canons with less orthodox, semi-technical decisions. The resultant amalgam tolerates more relaxed epic power metal hymns like "Lightning Boltz Emanate", or short bursting speedsters like "Automotive Destruction". Some of the band members also play with the heavy metal outfit Moore.

Necropanther Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

NECROPHAGIA (USA, CA)

Very good fast-paced thrash, closer to the examples from Germany rather than their homeland: Sodom, Destruction, and above all, Kreator. There are touches of Slayer ("Feel My Knife") as well; the band never slow down and keep the pace very fast on both efforts, with the Slayer-influences more predominant on the demo, which is very aggressive, reaching for the death metal borders at times, and the German ones more obvious on the EP.

It Began With a Twisted Dream Demo, 1987
Necrophagia EP, 1987

NECROPHAGIA (USA, OH)

Although Necrophagia have been largely regarded as a death metal band, at least their landmark debut has its feet firmly on thrash metal soil. The style on this one is quite unique, mid to up-tempo with sudden proto-death parts and occasional original guitar work, at times coming close to semi-technical thrash ("Beyond and Back", which is a fine multi-layered track). There is a stomping, heavy quality in the music as well, reminiscent of early Celtic Frost and Abomination ("Bleeding Torment"), but when the guys feel like thrashing, they take no prisoners: "Insane For Blood"; "Reincarnation", which is actually one of the first attempts at death metal; the great sinister death/thrasher "Mental Decay". Make sure not to miss the imposing doomy ending of "Painful Discharge" (which is not very likely, since it lasts for more than a minute). Killjoy's vocals are another fine addition to the band's uniqueness with their half-whispered, declamatory style bringing to mind a satanic priest chanting a magic spell during a black mass. Seldom can one hear an album so full of oppressive, ominous atmosphere; this is the perfect soundtrack to many horror films.

"Holocausto De La Morte" comes at the beginning of the thrash metal revival which started at around the same time, but it's not as satisfying as the impressive debut despite the certain amount of black metal ala Barathrum and Beherit added. The guitar work is more simplistic, and the sound seldom goes beyond the mid-tempo. More ambitious moments can be felt (the twisted riffage of "The Cross Burns Black"), but on the rest the approach is samey and a bit monotonous. The furious death metal explosion "Children of the Vortex" comes as a revelation, but "one swallow is not a sign that spring is coming"...
"The Divine Art of Torture" is an improvement, although it has little to do with thrash, but there are a couple of stylish moments, even recalling Morbid Angel. It's quite diverse, offering technical, direct aggressive, slower doomy, black-ish, and other numbers.

"Harvest Ritual Volume I" is another amalgam of influences and styles with thrash metal returning to the forefront; it starts with the intense death metal piece "Dead Skin Slave", but "Unearthed" is a heavy atmospheric thrasher with a weird keyboard tune in the background which comes up on several other tracks later on. "Cadavera X" follows a similar pattern, but is slower and doomy, and the rest of the songs aren't too far style-wise which could be considered a flaw by some since there's no speed involved, just crushing heavy, slow to mid-paced, riffage. But we'll wait and see what happens on "Harvest Ritual Volume II"...

"Deathtrip 69" is not a very distant departure from its predecessor serving heavy mid-tempo thrash/death metal which, despite its consistent nature, sounds kind of predictable and not as exciting. "Kyra" is a sudden hardcore outbreak in the middle, but is hardly a big asset rudely breaking the serious morose tone of the other material. Atmospheric gimmicks sneak in later ("Deathtrip 69"), like doomy and semi-balladic sections, but all this is nothing really exceptional; neither is the country/rock joke at the end "Death Valley 69". Yes, Mr. Killjoy has done a much better job in the past both with this and other bands; here he just sounds tired and uninspired despite the healthy 6-year break.

"WhiteWorm Cathedral": the veterans are back with a new opus which shows some admirable skills in the lead department. Otherwise it's business as usual for Killjoy and Co. who adhere to their staple officiant mid-paced steam-rolliness which is mildly engaging also bringing quite a few melodic touches to the fore despite the gloomy doomy atmosphere which settles as the dominant one. "Elder Things" is a surprising fast-pacer, but its more intense nature doesn't find a lot of support from the remaining material "Silentium Vel Mortis" being the other exception, a brutal short blasting piece. This is by no means a step back for the band, and firmly manages to keep their macabre horror-film soundtrack aesthetics for most of the time.

Season of the Dead Full-length, 1987
Holocausto De La Morte Full-length, 1998
Black Blood Vomitorium EP, 2000
Cannibal Holocaust EP, 2001
The Divine Art of Torture Full-length, 2003
Goblins Be Thine EP, 2004
Harvest Ritual Volume I Full-length, 2005
Deathtrip 69 Full-length, 2011
WhiteWorm Cathedral Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NECROPHILE (JAPAN)

Based on the band's first two demos, this is badly produced, but quite intense and aggressive thrash metal with proto-death passages. These guys were definitely trying to introduce death metal to the Japanese fans, and although this isn't one of the best attempts in this direction, kudos should be paid for the fact that Necrophile are surely one of the first to try that on Japanese ground.

The "Dissociated Modernity" single is two songs of misanthropic brutal death/thrash metal bordering on grind; the brutal deathy growls only further aggravate the gloom and despair. Cool are the heavy breakdowns ala Morbid Angel which come accompanied by chaotic Kerry King-like leads.

The Terminal Derangement Demo, 1988
Beyond the Truth Demo, 1989
Deride the Remedied/Rumpus of the undead Split, 1991
Dissociated Modernity Single, 1991
Upheaval of Blasphemy/Dissociated Modernity Split, 2004

NECROPHILIAC (ARGENTINA)

Based on the "Dark Life" demo, this act specialize in fast blitzkrieg thrash along the lines of Morbid Saint and early Sadus. Proto-death shows its "nasty face" here and there, but the band seldom leave the thrash metal confines playing with inspiration and competence. Some stylish shreds can be found on the final "No Way To Hide" and may make one curious to hear more from them.

Demo Demo, 1988
Dark Life Demo, 1990
Demo Demo, 2012

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NECROPHILIAC (MEXICO)

This is an obscure effort of fast aggressive thrash/proto-death metal; pretty wild, slightly chaotic, stuff with Incubus a close call as well as the Brazilians Holocausto and Dorsal Atlantica (their debuts mostly). Later this band was transformed into the full-fledged death metal band Noctambulism who survived for the recording of 3 demos during the early/mid-90's.

Putrefact Death Demo, 1988

NECROPHOBIC (POLAND)

Based on "Fears": heavy, stomping thrash metal obviously influenced by the modern sound of Exhorder; quite well done, despite the lack of variety in the songs. "No More Life" hesitates between the classic and the upcoming modern one and as such could be considered the better listen. Faster songs take turns with slower, heavier ones, as some of the latter even carry a slight technical edge ala late 80's Metallica ("Kill"- check the cool leads on this one, too), but shorter. The best compositions are actually blends of the two approaches ("Live and Suffer", and especially "Sucking Blood" which comes with a nice technical main riff and great Oriental tunes). The closing "Die As Mad" is another very good song, this time allowing the technical moments to develop fully into a diverse more complex thrasher, again following the Metallica patterns.

No More Life Full-length, 1992
Fears Full-length, 1994

NECROPLASMA (SWEDEN)

This 2-man band played on their early demos very fast and aggressive black metal with frequent blast-beats, very seldom bordering on thrash, or death metal; very speedy and merciless stuff which would probably come as too much for the average metal fan. With their full-length debut things got a little under control, and the aggression has been tamed, and thrash metal has moved forward, although still playing a secondary part to black metal. The band's music of more recent times is still a very intense blend of black and thrash metal, quite good, occasionally courting other genres (death metal, gothic, etc.)

The Cold Of Uncaring Moon Demo, 1999
Black Funeral Horns Demo, 2000
Obscurial Death EP, 2001
Demo 2001 Demo, 2001
Glory of the Ancient Gods Split, 2002
My Hearse, My Redemption Full-length, 2002
Pure Necrodarkness Split, 2002
4 Spears In God's Ribs Split, 2003
Storm Of The Shallow Voices Split, 2005
X Corona Bestia Vox Vocis Demo, 2005
Gospels Of Antichristian Terror Best of/Compilation, 2006
Satanic Butchery Split, 2006
Sit Gloria Domini In Saecvlvm Full-length, 2006

Official Site

NECROPOLIS (UK)

Ex-members of Atom God and the death metallers Gomorrah are involved in this wild, uneven, and sometimes downright irritating mix of thrash, power, Motorhead and death metal which is topped by brutal death vocals. The songs are quite long one of them ("Shadowman") closing on whole 11-min (a concept obviously relevant to the Atom God output), but nothing can save them from falling into total oblivion: fast aggressive passages are suddenly replaced by awkward heavy/power metal ones the latter lasting for too long "killing" completely the little inertia the music has had accumulated previously. This is just plainly bad with some complex pretensions which are ultimately unrealised thanks to the sloppy musicianship and the lack of focus.

End of the Line Full-length, 1997

NECROPOLIS (USA, California)

Based on the "Death Metal" demo, this isn't exactly death metal like the guys wanted it to be, but is quite intense thrash, and well played at that. The style is a potent blend of Dark Angel's "We Have Arrived" and Slayer's "Hell Awaits", and although the music occasionally has these proto-death qualities, at this early stage it's a bit farfetched to talk about full-fledged death metal, at least coming from this band.

Death Metal Demo, 1986
Demo #2 Demo, 1986

NECROPOLIS (USA, Georgia)

Rough, but quite intense speed/thrash metal recalling Whiplash's debut.

Contemplating Slaughter Full Length,1988

NECROPOLIS (USA, Pensylvania)

The band's first demo is thrash/crossover ala early Nuclear Assault, and although this was quite a good achievement, it's on their second one where the guys really hit the mark: "Future Kill" features 5 songs of very well executed speedy thrash metal along the lines of the German heroes Destruction and Exumer.

Welcome to the Masquerade Demo, 1986
Future Kill Demo, 1987
The Insanity Has Only Begun Demo, 1988

NECROPOLIS (USA, Washington DC)

A pleasant surprise from the mid-90's this way comes to provide good energetic retro thrash for most of the time which doesn't promise much with the soft balladic opener "Deceived-Deception", but the moshing is just 4-min away: "Deceived-Realization" is speed/thrash with a Bay-Area flavour. "Nameless City" carries on in the same vein also adding the desirable technical edge to the proceedings recalling early Testament. "Obsession Unleashed" is a more ordinary heavy stomper with a sweeping speed metal ending. "Next in Line" is a heavy/power metal joy, but "I Can't Believe" speeds up again with a cool semi-balladic twist in the middle; the twists don't end up there since very soon after there's another one: a brutal blasting death metal break. The closing "Vision" is proto-modern thrash with heavy smashing riffs, the only deviation from the classic sound. 4 years later the guys appeared with their new formation: the progressive death metal act Sculptured with whom they have 3 full-lengths released.

Descent Full-Length, 1994

NECROPSIA (VENEZUELA)

Decent retro thrash with numerous death metal touches; the singer is the ultimate brutal growler, but the music makes more sense being intense and speedy despite the noisy guitar background and the hollow-sounding drums.

Vicios y Abortos Full-length, 1993

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NECROPSY (FRANCE)

An obscure trio from France practicing vicious intense thrash/death the downpour intercepted at tiems by casual slower interludes. The sound quality is not very good especially the drums which sound like casseroles being beaten into a pulp. The title-track is a more sensible semi-technical basher with surprisingly intelligible leads, and the instrumental "Classification Death" is another partial more comprehensive composition which loses the speed for the sake of a more atmospheric, much slower delivery. The vocals are guttural agonizing death shouts reminiscent of early Martin van Drunen (Asphyx, Pestilence).

Infected Corpse Demo, 1994

NECROPSY (TURKEY)

Based on the demo, these Turks pull out quite good Germanic speed/thrash in the Toxic Shock, Paradox, and early Destruction mould graced by stylish technical guitar work. These are 4 songs of blistering speed/thrash which won't let you loose for a single moment topped by cool, mid-levelled vocals, sounding quite close to K. Weber (Toxic Shock). The guys looked well-equipped to give "lessons in speed", like the demo title suggests, but it would be interesting to check whether they had succumbed to the modern trends on the two full-lengths, like many other promising acts had...

Speed Lessons Part 1 Demo, 1992
Mi Kubbesi Full-length, 1996
Say'b2 2 Full-length, 2006

Official Site

NECROPSYA (BRAZIL)

Based on the full-length debut, this trio pulls out cool retro thrash with a rich dark sound, quite similar to the one of Infernal Majesty's "None Shall Defy", but less elaborate, and late 80's Slayer. There is a fair amount of fast sinister riffage, but the band's strength lies in the slower heavy sound ("Politic Games", "Destroy"). "Chaos Architect" leads the pack here being a brooding pessimistic piece, with an almost doom metal intensity. With those aforementioned numbers occupying the middle, and creating a slightly monotonous atmosphere, "Settle Of Old Scores" comes more than welcome with its more dynamic riffage and a nice middle acoustic break. It paves the way for the arrival of the highlight "TV Messiah" which thrashes with more intensity, a tendency continued on the longer, and slightly dragging "Train Of Souls". This is by no means bad, but more speed involved on future efforts would make more heads mosh around.

The "Bandas Fora Da Garagem" EP is a more melodic and slower affair reflected in moodier tracks with heavier riffage and a retouched guitar sound. The heaviness at times clings towards the fields of doom ("Determinacao" which finishes in a splashing fast-paced fashion), and speed is seldom the order of the day except on a few isolated sections (the closing "Prisioned").
"Distorted" would be a not very pleasant surprise the band having captured the modern trends at a time when almost everyone was looking back at the past, and despite some unbridled aggressive moments ("Ask Myself") the material is ordinary groovy post-thrash with scattered hardcore and stoner/doom emanations. It's not a total waste and some sections are merry and sing-along, but this is way inferior to the more inspired debut.

Destroy Demo, 2005
Skull Crusher EP, 2006
Bandas Fora Da Garagem EP, 2006
Roars Full-length, 2007
Distorted Full-Length, 2011

Official Site

NECROPSYA (PERU)

Based on the demo, these guys play thrash/death akin to early Agressor and Incubus with a great bass bottom. The only criticism, if any at all, would be that very often is the music straight death metal leaving the thrash metal field completely.

"Made With Evil" is dedicated to thrash metal almost entirely, but in this case this is not a positive remark. The guys play with speed and sharpness both well expressed on the opening trio of songs which are major headbangers with nice melodic guitar work. Then comes "Inside a World in Flames" which is a mild power/thrasher leaving its undesirable trace on a couple of following songs. "Damnation" comes to conquer being a short aggressive speedster, but from it till the end we have bland tiring soft mid-pacers which even lose the classic idea at some point. The demos were rough-around-the-edges, but delivered with their primal brutal sound, whereas here the slick production and the more polished musicianship at display here are hardly an asset the music lacking spontaneity and inspiration.

"Toward Insanity" shows a lesson learnt well: after the shaky last effort the band now sound way more convincing and more interesting. The songs are vivid speed/thrashers graced by some of the finest leads to ever come out of South America. The riffage is sharp and fast making cuts like the title-track and the technical thrash/death metal insanity "Food Of Vultures" major neck-sprainers. Most of the other material is actually not far behind those tracks (the only exception the lyrical semi-ballad "Away From Your Smile") the band playing on full-throttle all the way to the end notching it up a bit on the closing shorter "Revenge And Slaughter" which is superseded by another short acoustic instrumental piece called "Susmira Rosa". This is a really strong release the band finally fulfilling the promises; the harsh blacky vocals may be adjusted a bit for the future, but at the same time they give a more individual touch to the proceedings.

"Devastated by Time" is a more ambitious official release the band playing with plenty of melody bringing the sound closer to speed metal on quite a few times. Still, the sheer energy displayed all over would win the fans who would by all means be enamored by the complex proceedings introduced from the beginning with the Paradox-esque opener "The Last Flight"; those proceedings lose their edge at times (the beginning of "The Most Perfect Killer"; "Pen of the Gun") pleasing/displeasing the ears with mellower tones. There's an alternation between hard-hitting and more laid-back numbers till the end which gives the album a wider appeal even to the death metal fraternity due to the few short more aggressive "excursions".

Slaves of the Magic Demo, 1993
Slaves of the Magic Best of/Compilation, 2002
When the Metal Legions Come From Strange Lands Split, 2004
Devastated by Time Full-length, 2008
Made With Evil Full-length, 2010
Toward Insanity Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NECRORIPPER (CHILE)

Based on the full-length, these Chileans play really good fast classic intense speed/thrash/death metal which is quite captivating, albeit built exclusively around speed and speed again. No complaints since the band shred with passion by adding both more melodic and more technical touches wherever necessary. The super-fast sections reach even an Expulsion-like acceleration, but the listener is given a chance to recharge near the end on the nice 2-min operatic instrumental "Triumphatus Ex Mortis" before the guys embark on one concluding "assault" on the senses with the exiting duo of head-splitters which will sweep you with their precise tight shredding to which one would definitely go back more than now and then.

The Premonitions About His Final Hour EP, 2010
Necrometal Full-Length, 2012

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NECRORISER (UK)

The EP: this British trio play "suicidal" classic thrash which is quite intense and hard-hitting with Devastation, Slayer and Morbid Saint close reference points. Not all is aggression here, though, and "Cleanse" is a nice steam-rolling stomper in the best tradition of late-80's Slayer. The sound quality is too good boosting both the guitars and the drums to the point of noisiness at times, and the vocals are expressive shouty ones with a lower death metal tone.

"Violent" is both "violent" and "suicidal" classic stuff since all the 4 numbers from the EP are here again the rest assisting them well for the release of this roller-coaster which seldom pauses for a break from the speedy barrage the latter coming with expert riffage boosted by the very good production which makes the guitars cut like a knife even on short hardcore-prone pieces like "Ambush". The singer shouts more expressively now his forceful rendings a bit higher-pitched.

Suicide EP, 2011
Violent Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NECROSADISTIC GOAT TORTURE (UK)

Based on the "One Nation Under Goat" EP, these Brits unleash a fast'n furious blend of thrash, a little bit of black, and death metal which is not sheer blasts, but introduces calmer moments, and even more clever guitar work ("Anger Overload", which also boasts a nice epic/semi-balladic mid-section). The style isn't too far removed from the early efforts of the Australians Destroyer 666, but here the leads are more proficient, longer and more melodic. "Godlike" is blasting black, the only more black metal-based composition, mixing the raging riffs with very beautiful orchestral tunes along the lines of Dimmu Borgir's "Enthrone Darkness Triumphant". The closer "Hamster Fucker" is a light-hearted crossover reliever.

Necrosadistic Goat Torture Demo, 2003
One Nation Under Goat EP, 2004
The Maniac's Banquet EP, 2006

Official Site

NECROSIS (CHILE)

One of the better Chilean thrash metal bands; their debut is impressive heavy thrash reminiscent of late 80's Slayer with more technical attempts; the guys alternate long, more complex tracks with shorter, faster ones; both work fine, accompanied by a truly striking bass bottom. Both the technicality and aggression reach their climax on the multi-layered 10-min opus "Prayer". "Golden Valley" shows the more melodic side of the band, slowing down, introducing more melodic guitar lines.

13 years later Necrosis found the time to record again; "Enslaved To The Machine" is a good way for the band to restart their career; it has a decidely more modern sound, and better production qualities. This is one of the first examples of how the classic sound can be made appealing to the younger crowd, by being "wrapped" in a modern production- an example later followed by Exodus, Onslaught, Nasty Savage, etc. The guitars here are more pounding and heavier, also more technical, but the spontaneity and energy of the debut are kind of missing, and now the music is quite close to Sacred Reich's "The American Way" on the slower moments, including the vocals, which are a blend between the two Phil's of thrash: Rind (Sacred Reich) and Anselmo. The second half of the album is much more appealing, with "Enslaved to the Machine", "Killing Engine", and "Omega Man" offering a more aggressive delivery, nicely recalling the debut in many ways. There's also a remastered version of the best song from there: "Prayer", which doesn't radically differ from the original.

"Reborn" is more like a second comeback effort having in mind the huge gap between the albums, and now the guys have bet on a faster play well expressed on the brisk opening title-track and its immediate follower "Hidden Enemy" which spice their classic approach with a modern production in a way very close to the debut. Still, the music is way more appealing here thrashing with no mercy on the excellent shredder "The Weakest". More technical and more laid-back riffage can be heard on "Something Unreal", a cool minimalistic semi-technical thrasher with an 80's American spirit ala Have Mercy and Ulysses Siren. "Beyond Reality" is galloping thrash at its best giving way to the less intense, but more technical "Living in a Cage". Grab your seat for the ball of fury "Elite Hunter", a brutal little thrasher which is quite contrasting to the next slower and more complex "My Execution". The end is a reminder of the band's past: the act Fallout with which the guys released two demos in the late-80's, with the re-mastered version of "Powerfiend" from the 1st demo, a cool heavy mid-paced number, not really altered except for the cleaner production. This is a good job seeing the veterans "disturbing" the youngsters although it may need more from them, both quality and quantity-wise, in order to stay on the front row amid the very strong competition on the South American scene.

The guys founded another act, using the title of their debut closer (Kingdom of Hate), to re-release their debut with better production qualities although nothing really new has been offered. Whether this new formation will produce something unheard, only time can tell...
The guys are back under their old moniker and the nice lead-driven intro "Desolation Land", a great reminder of Judas Priest's "The Hellion", promises plenty of classic mastery. Later the guys don't disappoint and perform with proficiency although the guitar edge and the overall production are strictly modern with ripping pieces like "Insolence" and "The Ovalo Prison" making the backbone of this effort which echoes Exodus' more recent albums as well as Onslaught. More melodic laid-back pieces like the closing "My Own Funeral" show the band's more tender side which hasn't been fully revealed until now.

The Search Full-length, 1988
Enslaved to the Machine Full-length, 2001
Reborn Full-length, 2009
Age of Decadence Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NECROTERIUM (BRAZIL)

A power trio from Brazil who indulge in ripping speed/thrash with very few slower stops along the way. Vicious black metal vocal accompany the cannonade which is taken straight from the early works of the 80's German scene (think the Holy three, above all). The sound quality isn't too good although the lead guitarist does his best to come on top with his screamy contributions.

Demo Demo, 1988

NECROSKINNER (BRAZIL)

The debut: this is a good job; both the short length of the songs and the sound remind of another Brazilian band, Ratos De Porao, minus the hardcore-ish tendencies of the latter. The tempo is pretty fast and intense with the only deviation from the norm "Incredulos Estupidos" being a great atmospheric thrasher. The best from these guys is hopefully yet to come...

"Chaoskinner" is a smashing piece of brutality, "Reign in Blood" of the new millennium, plain and simple, spiced with both hardcore and proto-death moments. A bullet after bullet are shot in the form of short 1-2min tracks, direct stripped-down assault supported by forceful hardcore-ish semi-shouts and occasional, but stylish, melodic breaks with a speed metal flavour ("Scum Of The Underworld", the excellent closing semi-technical instrumental "Necrorush", and elsewhere). Thrash till death... and beyond! Some of the band members also try something much more melodic with the power metal formation Lord Byron.

Asphyxkinner Full-Length, 2007
Chaoskinner Full-length, 2009

Official Site

NECROTIC EFFECT (RUSSIA)

The EP: these Russians offer crunchy modern thrash which comes suitably heavy, suddenly pretty fast ("Among The Damned") with a slight proto-death metal edge, cool, albeit a bit thin, leads, and unpleasant hoarse low-tuned death metal vocals.

"Black Box" contains two of the 3 tracks from the EP, and besides that another portion of edgy modern-sounding numbers with a more or less accentuated deathy edge (the interesting semi-technical opener "Awake Your Angel" which will really try hard to "awake your angels" with several more aggressive passages). Unfortunately, the first song's more serious attitude is nowhere encountered afterwards the album providing simplistic speed/thrashers its frolic free-flowing nature interrupted on the slower proto-groover "Spirits Of The Dead" in the middle, and the cool romantic semi-ballad "Graveyard In The Paradise" near the end.

Among The Damned EP, 2011
Black Box Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NECROTIZE (UK)

Based on "Grievance", these guys, who were previously known as Mindless Torture when they used to play death metal, provide modern thrash which is varied with both fast and slow tempos covered the former even to the point of manic blast-beating ("Wretched Life"; the wild shredder "Messiah) where the band's death metal roots can be heard very clearly. Still, this is thrash metal all the way coming with a somewhat sterile, mechanized guitar sound and hoarse shouty death metal vocals. At its more stylish the music may remind you of Grip Inc.: the more elaborate closer "Walking The Footsteps Of Saul" which creeps forward with cool semi-technical riffs and haunting melodies exploding near the end in a furious speedy fashion.

Necrotize Full-length, 2006
Death Comes to Us All EP, 2008
Grievance Full-length, 2010

Official Site

NECROTOMIC (FINLAND)

This obscurity offers dark stomping thrash which makes sense for most of the time despite the awful sound quality. The guys have no fear "flirting" with the spawning at the time death metal ("Enforced To Kill"), and generally the fast-paced escapades aren't such a rare phenomenon also including the choppy, more varied "Cross Of Hate". The singer mostly recites in a sinister staccato fashion trying hard to disguise his limited vocal abilities. Later the guys changed their name to Necromancer and had a more lasting career although as of now they haven't been able to secure an official release despite their ongoing active ctatus.

Prolicide Demo, 1987

NECROTOS (SLOVAKIA)

Based on the demo, this outfit indulge in intense old school thrash/proto-death which loses a lot from the sloppy, fuzzy production. The more laid-back material (the heavy stomper "Nekromantia") seems to work better as it isn't hampered by the awful sound quality too much. "Spasa v smrti" at the end is a surrisingly stylish technicaller, and it's a pity that such musicianship isn't encountered earlier. The singer is another serious pullback woth his unrehearsed, harsh shouty death metal-ish timbre.

Fire and Ice Demo, 1991
Ante Portas Tenebrum Full-length, 1999

NECROWAR (ITALY)

This obscure act unleash not bad intense thrash with formidable riffage and brave nods towards the proto-death scene. The guys change the pace, and the singer is quite a find with his sinister voice which can change from aggressive proto-death shout to some impressive high-pitched clean tirades. The band soften down the approach on the power metal winner "Beginning Of The End" which will remind of Nasty Savage's debut and Griffin; but "To Die On A Cross" is a pure smasher, a direct speedy cut bashing all the way to the closing "Necrowar" which is again more on the ponderous power/thrash metal side with more beautiful musicianship even branching into something wonderfully chaotic and technical at some point in the middle. The production is a bit thin, though, giving a very buzzy edge to the guitars at times.

Same Demo, 1989

NECROZONE (RUSSIA)

This obscure Russian formation indulge in aggressive thrash/proto-death akin to Morbid Saint and Gammacide. The guys show some technical aspirations which are better materialized on the longer pieces ("Interminable Death", "Yoke Of Destiny"). Still, there's no brutal shredding spared here on this short effort which also boasts admirable fretwork all over: check out the speed/thrash metal frenzy at the end "Mental Control". It's a pity that the sound quality isn't good at all providing a not very pleasant fuzzy background.

Interminable Death Demo, 1993

NECROZZZ (RUSSIA)

Good retro thrash with a nice melodic edge, strong bass-bottom, and gruff semi-clean vocals; the tempo is mostly energetic with one semi-ballad included ("A Requiem 'e0"). The best comes in the middle, on the shortest (2-3min) tracks, where the music takes a fine technical turn, especially on the excellent 2-part "Lake Of Dead". The patriotic song "The Earth Of Russians" starts as a ballad, too, but becomes faster and sharper later on with a slight epic/power metal flavour. The final "Buka" is another worthy thrasher with a jollier crossover shade.

Liho (-F)e) Full-length, 2005

Official Site

NEKROKULT (BRAZIL)

Desecration of Blood Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NEED (GREECE)

The modern groovy side of thrash is given a cool progressive twist by these Greeks. The debut is the milder affair with softer riffage sitting somewhere between the Black Album and GZR, plus the quiet progressive breaks. "Denmad" is a pleasant headbanging surprise, but the rest seldom leaves the conventional groovy formula.

"Siamese God" is a different story, a more hard-hitting effort with a dark Nevermore flavour. Some of the groovy settings are still around, but the arrangements are more dynamic as evident from the intense brooding opener "Rainy Pieces Of Hell", a formidable thrashy riff-fest. "Soon" is a much more ordinary groover, and "Lie Before You Sleep" is just a bit better semi-ballad. No more "mistakes", and "Flesh Machines" will stun you with its aggressive riffs and fast tempos, a dark progressive thrashterpiece quite close to the Italians Chaoswave's best moments. The title-track drags a bit offering a more alternative form of the 90's post-thrash for more than 7-min., and "In Between" is another, this time full-blooded, ballad. "Warning" comes to save the day with heavy pounding guitars, but is hardly the best possible "saviour" grooving toothlessly at some point. The jumpy more technical "C.M.R." is much more satisfying, a hectic steam-rolling number, but the closing "The Lesson" will hardly teach you a "lesson" in anything being another groovy filler which will "bother" you for over 14-min (!?). The better moments are far superior to the others making this album a fairly uneven offering, but fans of the more serious side of modern metal won't be disappointed in the really long run.

The Wisdom Machine Full-length, 2006
Siamese God Full-length, 2009

Offical Site

NEEDLE IN THE CROSS (UK)

Merry, unpretentious old school thrash/crossover which "courts" both punk and hardcore along the way, but the mood is high all around, and quite a few crushing riffs can also be encountered ("Set It Straight", "Off The Cuff"). An interesting symbiosis has been achieved between the very good female vocals and the assisting gruff hardcore, male ones, not to mention the frequent shouty choruses; merry, party stuff...

Badasses A Portal And The End Of The World Full-Length, 2016

NEFARIA (AUSTRALIA)

5 songs of pounding seismic modern thrash metal which develops in a steam-roller mid-pace with crushing riffs and throaty semi-shouty vocals. "Blood To Rust" introduces both nice Oriental motifs and classic-sounding guitars to come close to the "exploits" of Cerebral Fix with its steam-rolling delivery.

Erase The One Believed EP, 2007

Official Site

NEFARIOUS (USA)

This not very known act specialize in heavy power/thrash with very good clean mid-ranged vocals which can be quite emotional on occasion. The demo has its faster-paced moments ("Nefarious") which will remind of Aftermath and Nothing Sacred, but it's in the seismic macabre riffage where the guys really shine: check out "Fatal Submission" and the epic marcher "Valhalla". Later on the effort loses its appeal with mellower power metal-based numbers, but the closing "Lords" will make a lot of heads bang in unison in a way no worse than the best from acts like Attacker and Savage Grace.

Act of Worship Demo, 1989

NEFAST (FRANCE)

Based on the "Food" demo, this obscure trio indulges in heavy, one-dimensional proto-thrash, a typical product of its time except for the vocals which are more aggressive, with a death metal blend. The guitars are noisy, but suit the monotonous mid-tempo approach.

Inauspicious Demo, 1993
Food Demo, 1994
Live Demo, 1995
Live Demo, 1996

NEFASTIS (ITALY)

This formation specialize in modern speed/thrash with a Children of Bodom flavour. The band stagger at times towards the Gothenburg textbooks ("Napalm Asphalt and Violence") by also providing the obligatory longer epic numbers ("Grave of Ice") which have more weight and are way more convincing than the numerous short instrumentals provided between tracks. "Fucked by Alcohol" is also "fucked" by cool headbanging old school thrash, a sure antidote to the calm serene piano-driven instrumental closer "Facing New Demons".

De Diebus Fastis Nefastis Infaustis Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NEFASTO (CHILE)

Retro thrash with crossover/hardcore elements; fast intense stuff bordering on the grindy style of early Cryptic Slaughter, but most of the time it develops in a direct blitzkrieg fashion ala early Ratos de Porao. The songs evolve in a samey fast way topped by brutal death metal vocals of the semi-shouty type.

Exterminador Full-length, 2009

My Space

NEFILIM (NICARAGUA)

This outfit indulge in a mixture of classic and modern thrash which boosts the bass quite a bit so don't expect too many fast-paced sections here the music developing in a calm mid-pace with cool melodic tunes. A "rude awakening" will befall the listener at the end with the relatively brutal cut "Monopolio" which thrashes its way out with abrasive sterile guitars supported by the forceful angry semi-shouty death metal vocals.

Ideologias De La Destruccion EP, 2012

NEGAROBO (JAPAN)

In the 90's most of the Japanese thrash metal bands have either modernized their sound to a point of absurdity, or have left the thrash metal camp. Here come Negarobo to save the day. This is very good aggressive thrash of the old school which will remind you of many of the 80's heroes- Slayer, Dark Angel, Morbid Saint, Gammacide, Torture, Devastation; one of the best albums to come out ot Japan during the 90's.

Emergency Full Length, 1997

NEGATIVE CREEPS (GREECE)

Based on the "Satancore" EP, this act pull out vivid, energetic thrash/crossover which could hardly pass for a new wave in the style ("satancore", that is) since it doesn't offer anything new if we exclude the excellent melodic lead guitar work and partially the thick heavy guitar sound. The compositions are longer for the genre and at times branch out into something a bit more complex ("Urban Warfare") which may find a more fertile ground on a longer effort. The singer is an attached semi-shouter not far from Phil Anselmo.

999 1999, EP
Satancore 2001, EP

NEGATIVE GROUND (PORTUGAL)

A pretty capable slab of retro power/thrash metal with an interesting epic/battle edge. "The Hangman" is a curious dramatic piece with progressive overtones on a hectic base strangely recalling obscure acts like Drifter and Unleashed Power (their debut, in particular). "Stronghold (Killing Truth P2)" switches onto classic American galloping power/thrash metal with a good chorus and crisp energetic riffs where the clean emotional singer leaves a memorable trace, too, with his attached epic-sounding antics. "Forsaken (Killing truth Pt.3)" carries on with the horse ride with full force lashing out less controlled speedy riffs near the end. "New World Order Arrives" is glorious speed/thrash metal ala Helstar's "Distant Thunder" slowing down for an imposing epic/doomy break in the middle. This is a really cool effort played with confidence and understanding of the genre laws which needs both a continuation and an elaboration.

The "Urban Fight" EP is a much milder effort with softer, not very intense guitars with a strong 80's American flavour: think Omen, Jag Panzer, Griffin. The laid-back atmosphere will hardly please many thrash metal fans who may abandon this recording way before the end getting tired of those not very inspired mid-paced riffs with the staple epic flair which may also remind of the Swedes Heavy Load and even early Manowar.

New World Order Arrives EP, 2010
Urban Fight EP< 2013

Offical Site

NEGATIVE SELF (SWEDEN)

Plesant, friendly thrash/crossover very similar to mid-period Suicidal Tendencies the singer trying to capture this warm, clean croon characteristic of Mike Muir. The album has its dynamic side ("Another Year"), of course, although those are the moments when the Suicidals' imitation becomes way too obvious, and one may be a tad happier listening to the more individual material, like the nice semi-progressive "Self-Destruct...The Pain Never Ends". There's not much thrash to be savoured in the long run here, the band preserving the established feelgood tone which should warm the hearts of a wider gamut of fans.

Negative Self Full-Length, 2015

Offical Site

NEGATRON (PHILIPPINES)

Based on the demo, these guys might put the Philippines on the thrash metal map; the style is pure classic thrash which is quite similar to some good examples from the German thrash metal scene: Sodom's "Agent Orange" and Necronomicon's "Escalation", so this is mostly fast-paced and energetic stuff, but the Asians rely on more sprawling, longer song-structures where they insert slower atmospheric sections, not too far from early Celtic Frost, plus unnecessary inclusions of black metal blast-beats which could be avoided for the future as they simply sound misplaced.

Messiah of Damnation Demo, 2004
Thermal Shock Best of/Compilation, 2006

NEGAZIONE (ITALY)

Based on the full-length debut, this band play light-hearted thrash/crossover of the less hard-hitting type; catchy, unpretentious music, which is not completely missing on some heavier riffs, but this is not something the thrash metal fan would focus for long.

Condannati a morte nel nostro quieto vivere EP, 1985
Tutti pazzi EP, 1985
Lo spirito continua Full-length, 1986
Little dreamer Full-length, 1988
Behind the door EP, 1989
Sempre in bilico Single, 1989
100% Full-length, 1990

Offical Site

NEGLIGENCE (SLOVENIA)

This is a winner: awesome semi-technical thrash ala Forbidden and the Swiss Apocalypse. The album begins in a blistering way with the speedy smasher "Places of Dawn", but the tempo later varies from speedy technical opuses ("Threshold of Society", "Bay Arena") to stomping heavy pieces ("No Brain No Pain"). The faster side is the more attractive one and is fortunately much more accentuated on: check also the closing masterpiece "Thrust". This is a really impressive way to start a career and it would be interesting to see what else these guys have up their sleeve.
"Coordinates Of Confusion" hits hard, too, this time coming with a boosted more modern production moving the approach closer to more recent Paradox quite a bit. The guys unleash two speedsters to warm up the listener in the beginning, but "Addicted To Aggression" is slower and more controlled not deserving its "aggressive" title except maybe near the end where a couple of faster riffs can be heard. The speed/thrashing madness carries on with "Disharmony" and "Insane Asylum", both split by a great lead-driven instrumental ("The Way To..."). Two more moderate mid-pacers follow suit before "Shark Attack" (which is not a Wehrmacht cover) shoots you at close range with speedy blitzkrieg riffs and fine short screaming leads. The closer, which is the title-track, is the only more serious attempt at a technical play being a varied progressive piece with lashing riffs and soaring melodies, mostly in the lead department. Although this is by no means a bad effort, it kind of falls behind the more inspired debut which carried both the more technical and the more classic charge.

Options Of A Trapped Mind Full-length, 2007
Coordinates Of Confusion Full-length, 2010

My Space

NEGRAMAGIA (SPAIN)

Based on "Cuestion De Principios", this act provide modern thrash with elements of hardcore. The band play fast with a few more melodic tunes encountered as well as the odd groovy break. Lyrical escapades like the power metal hymn "De Segunda Mano" aren't many at all, but the 2nd half isn't as energetic sticking to too many slow passages which start dragging way before the end. The singer shouts in an angry attached fashion often helped by the others on the frequent shouty choruses. Some of the guys also play in the more aggressive thrash/death metal outfit Total Death.

Vud'fa Full-length, 2003
Trashmutaci'f3n Full-length, 2005
A'f1os de Sol Full-length, 2008
Cuestion De Principios Full-Length, 2012

Official Site

NEKRODAIMON (GREECE)

A 3-song demo of more modern black/thrash metal crossing raging fast passages with epic/pagan ones.

Nekrodaimon Demo, 2000

NEKROFEIST (AUSTRALIA)

Groovy post-thrash with stoner/doom overtones; this is relatively peaceful stuff in a predictable mid-tempo, the odd jumpy riff, and sparce bluesy tendencies.

The "Main Street Sessions" demo is just 2 tracks of mid-tempo proto-thrash mixed with stoner/doom this jumpy music having loads of playful qualities except in the drunken shouty vocal department. One may start wondering what musicians of the calibre of Dave Tinelt (Mortal Sin) do here...

Main Street Sessions Demo, 2009
Nekrofeist EP, 2010

Official Site

NEKROFILTH (USA)

Based on the "Zombie Proof Sessions" demo, this act plays heavy aggressive thrash/crossover of the more extreme proto-deathy type boldly entering Wehrmacht waters on short violent bashers like "Shit Woman" (this same track also has a slower version near the end), "Shock Troopers", etc. The line-up includes Zack Rose: the guitarist/vocalist who is also a part of the classic thrashers Crucified Mortals and the death metal pioneers Nunslaughter.

The debut demo is a heavy affair recalling early Celtic Frost mixed with shorter thrash/crossover cuts (plus the grinding "atrocity" at the end "Fuck You"), both coming with abrasive, noisy guitars and cool forceful Tom G. Warrior-like vocals.

"Devil's Breath" is a more simplistic affair now being intense thrash/death with crust and hardcore waiting nearby to interfere at their earliest convenience. The brutality goes up a notch in the 2nd half as well as the heavy stomping Celtic Frost-like riffage which is more preferrable than the dynamic, but fairly one-dimensional, barrage heard on the rest.

Nekrofilth Demo, 2008
Zombie Proof Sessions Demo, 2009
Worship Destruction Full-length, 2011
Street Bitch EP, 2013
Devil's Breath Full-length, 2013

Official Site

NEKROKRAFT (SWEDEN)

Based on "Will o' Wisp", this band provide a larger-than-life blend of thrash, death and black metal which is too hyper-active to be a pure delight for the regular thrash metal fan. Hyper-blasts are omnipresent, but not in an exhausting way, and "Hellfire" is a cool epicer retouching the intense nature of the rest which is accompanied by vicious raven-like, black metal vocals.

Witches Funeral (Reborn in Fire) EP, 2012
Will o' Wisp Full-Lwength, 2016

Official Site

NEKROKULT (BRAZIL)

This is abrasive crusty black/thrash which varies the pace as the finest moments are the nods to early Celtic Frost ("Humanidade Podre") which compensate for a few blasting blacky outrages ("Satan is Endless", "Minha Cova"). "King of Darkness" seems to be quite an oddity here, imposing atmospheric funeral doom at its most Thergothon-esque, but working fine as a break from the hyper-active main appraoch. Some of the band members also play in the symphonic metallers Poeticus Severus, and the speed metal heroes The UnhaliGäst.

Desecration of Blood Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NEKROMANTHEON (NORWAY)

The EP: this is very good 80's thrash metal which, in a way similar to another band of recent years, Avenger of Blood, manages to recall many of the past heroes. The 2-min opener will crush you the way "Reign in Blood" and "Eternal Nighmare" did. Later the sound shakes hands with the German scene, too ("I Shall Serve"), before the following "The Spectator" brings you back to Slayer-territory again. "Unchained from the Devout" is a lesson how brutal, death-tinged thrash should be played (fans of "Beneath the Remains" and "Idolatry", beware). "Nekromantheon" sums it all up near the end, being a superb instrumental where the guys have left the guitars to do the final damage.

"Divinity of Death" is a no-brainer, as expected, the guys fulfilling all the promises given on the EP. "Gringo Death" is a sweeping death/thrash metal, a super-brutal piece which may have been the transitional number towards pure death metal later on, but "The Point of No Return" is a relatively safe, albeit super-speedy thrasher bringing the sound back to its thrash roots. "Cry Havoc" is another headbanging delight, fast and tight, with nice galloping deviations. Prepare to die on the prime speedster "Divinity of Death": "Into the Dark Past" on steriods, and especially on the brutal 40-sec instrumental speed/death metal madness "Lex Talionis". "Devolutionary Storms" offers more clever technical decisions still remaining pretty fast and intense. 3 short pieces of aggressive thrash follow suit, with a "relief" offered after them in the form of the much slower semi-technical "Psyanide" which still keeps fast "secrets" in the 2nd half. The final "Alcoholy Terror" is the jollier optimistic crossover closer which, albeit quite off-context, is more than a welcome deviation from this non-stop headbanging fest which can justly be placed right beside the three "aces" of 2010's thrash (Helstar, Overkill, Tankard) as the 4th one. Some of the band members also keep themselves busy with the more death metal-based act Obliteration.

"Rise, Vulcan Spectre" is another pretty cool, intense offering thrashing its soul out in an expected fast'n tight manner. The traditionally speedy opener is later followed by the ultra-speed/thrasher "Blood Wisdom" which leads the pack to the end, which towards the middle takes cool Germanic proportions (the Destruction-like "The Usurper Command") before bringing the winds of proto-death on the smashing title-track which is a great piece with very cool melodic leads. The ultra-rhythms carry on on "Twelve Depths of Hades" calming down a bit on the closing "Raised by Dogs" which is more in the speed metal camp with echoes of Angel Dust again. The band are moving forward with confidence leaving aside any experimentations, and chances are big that they would take over the thrash metal crown in their homeland pretty soon.

We're Rotting EP, 2007
Divinity of Death Full-length, 2010
Rise, Vulcan Spectre Full-length, 2012

Official Site

NEKROMANTIE (COLOMBIA)

The demo contains vicious raw thrash metal along the lines of the Brazilian acts from the same time: ..., but these guys surpass them sometimes with a more brutal faster approach ("Esquizofrenia"). The last track "Massacra" is a cover of Hellhammer: one of the fastest songs of the Swiss.

Nekromantie Demo, 1987
Resurrecci=n Maldita Best of/Compilation, 2006

NEKROPHILIA (AUSTRIA)

A 4-track demo of laid-back melodic thrash metal with gruff deathy vocals; the music follows the Gothenburg formula pretty closely without any surprises except perhaps for the good bass work.

Art of Destruction Demo, 2010

My Space

NEKROS (BRAZIL)

Progresive power/thrash which is built around lengthy ambitious compositions where enchanting balladic pasages "cross swords" with biting more intense rifforamas. The overall approach resembles the one from the 90's Swedsh wave (Memento Mori, hexenhaus, Memory Garden, Veni Domine) with a couple of drier, more sterile guitars ala Nevermore thrown in. "Exodus" is a slightly overlong ballad which influences the string of pieces that follow, prompting the thrashy edge to disappear completely by the end.

A Candle in the Dark Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NEKROST (BRAZIL)

Based on the full-length, this formation pull out dynamic modern thrash/post-thrash which can be fairly intense ("Fall of the Tyrants", "Point of Creation") on occasion, and generally the delivery is quite eventful the guys also inserting more clever, technical decisions ("Escape"). "All My Hate" is a very cool headbanger leading the final string of tracks which is finished by the technical riff-fest "The Endless Game", a not very predictable hectic piece with ever-changing rhythms and a few more brutal passages. The singer is on the shouty angry side and doesn't distract the listener too much.
The EP is the more aggressive offering the band also trying something more technical "Pain And Blood" being a handsome intense intricate shredder, something which was entirely missing from the full-length. " The Dark Path" has a few more semi-technical surprises to serve, but it's the complex progressiver "The Endless Game" at the end which pulls out all the stops with some virtuous guitar work and nice melodic lead sections.

All My Hate EP, 2006
The Dark Path Full-length, 2014

Official Site

NEMBIENCE (DENMARK)

Expect no surprises whatsoever on this total dedication to the Gothenburg movement citing early Dark Tranquillity above all. This is professionally done, but unimaginative, stuff, with crisp biting guitars, cool leads, loads of melodies, the gruff-clean vocal duel, and all else. More Swedish-styled death metal comes from the guys' other project Blinded by Fear (the band name says it all: hello, At the Gates!), but heavy/power metal of the old school is what's on offer from their other formation Iron Fire.

Through Times Of Despair Full-length, 2010

Official Site

NEMECIC (FINLAND)

The first EP: modern thrash/death, heavy and mid-paced, but intense and hard, with no traces of groove; if you can imagine a blend of Bolt Thrower's more battle-like doomy approach and more recent Entombed...
The full-length produces an explosive speedy opener ("Locomotive Tomb"), but afterwards the approach bears few surprises as the guys settle for their epic battle-rousing anthems, the squashing steam-rolling riffs marching remorselessly, trying something more lyrical on the semi-balladic respite "Void". "The Automaton" is the other more energetic cut, but the rest very seldom leaves the earth-shaking parametres often touching doom ("The Great Dissonance") with its hypnotic heavy rhythms.

Vigorous Fire and Inward Lightnings EP, 2009
The First Morning and the Last Day EP, 2011
The Deathcantation Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NEMESIS (COLOMBIA)

Typical for its time and place thrash metal demo offering something similar to their Brazilian counterparts: MX, Holocausto, Sarcofago, in other words this is raw aggressive black/thrash/proto-death metal.

Hombre: Oveja Negra Del Universo EP, 1988

NEMESIS (GERMANY)

This band was formed by members of Grinder, after that band's split up who, to strengthen the team, have also recruited musicians of Tankard. This collaboration has produced pure classic delight, heads-down thrash, very similar to the first two Grinder albums with the inclusion of heavier, but also quite energetic guitars which will remind you of Slayer's late-80's period ("Brothers in Death"). It's nice to hear heroes from the golden days of the genre doind what they could do best: thrash with no mercy.

Nemesis Full-Length, 1997

NEMESIS (ITALY)

A new Italian outfit who play abrasive industrialized modern thrash which overcomes the production noise with some inspired melodic guitar work which is a stark contrast to the harsh overshouty vocals. The tempos vary and a slight progressive edge can be detected in the fretwork which can become even more audible if the fuzzy production could be tweaked a bit on future efforts, if not applied intentionally, of course.

The Invasion EP, 2014

Official Site

NEMESIS (USA)

This band play aggressive retro thrash, fast relentless stuff laced with less controlled deathy decisions ala Demolition Hammer and Morbid Saint; heavy hitters like "Blades of Death" and "Psycho Surgeon" are almost hilarious in their over-the-top intensity bordering on hardcore, but this no-bars-held approach should definitely be appreciated by more fans regardless of the hordes of "Reign in Blood" emulators swarming the scene at present. Some of the musicians are also involved with the sludge/doom metal formation P.O.W.

Atrocity Unleashed Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NEMESIS: CHILDREN OF THE FEY (UK)

This new British formation offers epic doomy power/thrash metal with hammering battle-like riffs, with a few temptations at a faster play (the nice dynamic "Of Ice and Snow", a great reminder of the heydays of their compatriots Sabbat), but the music is consistent and varied, the only complaint coming from the vocal department: the singer's voice is unemotional, mid-ranged and one-dimensional, and more vocal dramatism would have been advantageous to the tight monolithic sound.

"Against All Odds" arrives not long after the EP and not surprisingly features all the four tracks from it which set the tone for this epic, battle-like opera sustained in a consistent mid-pace recalling the Italians Doomsword quite a bit as well as veterans like Heavy Load and Omen. "Feyrie" is a cool, more ambitious undertaking mixing hard-hitting guitars with mellower, balladic sections, but the rest is more immediate with heavy, pounding riffs aplenty. The overall approach is more faithful to power metal, and fans of the old 80's American sound will be quite happy with this one.

Spearhead EP, 2010
Against All Odds Full-Length, 2011

Official Site

NEMESYS (USA)

"The Violence Room": a 2-song demo of stunning technical power/thrash metal obviously influenced by Helstar's "Nosferatu"; the title-track is longer (5.5min) and is full of swirling leads, fast tempo-changes and stylish technical riffs. "Guilty" is shorter (3.5min) and is more aggressive and faster, quite intense on some sections, but the smashing technical guitars are all over it. This is how Helstar's "Multiples of Black" should have sounded.

The "Scarred for Life" demo is another commendable achievement with 5 songs included beginning with the shorter more immediate "Predicting The Vengeance", before the lengthy progressive opus "The Legacy Of Eve" takes over serving a pleiad of original riffy decisions, a prolonged balladic mid-break, and several impetuous speedy passages. The title-track is another more thought-out composition mixing slower and faster sections with the obligatory technical chops. "Shadows Run Black" is another speedy number relying on the melodic leads more, purely instrumental except for the piercing shriek emitted at the beginning. Mentioning the singer, he has a fairly thin voice which hits the high registers with assurance, but has problems handling the lower notes due to his very high-strung delivery.

Scarred for Life Demo, 1990
The Violence Room Demo, 1992

NEMEZIS (POLAND)

Based on the 1996 demo, this Polish act offer more complex modern thrash with speed metal elements and some more intriguing operatic arrangements. This is melodic stuff with brave nods towards the 90's power/speed metal movement and keyboards, plus the good attached clean vocals which are the only "ingredient" untouched by the muddy production.

Promo Demo, 1994
Demo Demo, 1996

Official Site

NEONGOD (NORWAY)

Based on the "Cleareyes" EP, this act offers a somewhat uneven mix of old school thrash (the energetic mosher "Zitadelle") and modern quasi-groovy one with heavy pounding rhythms. The latter takes the upper hand also helped by the noisy industrialized guitar sound and the shouty synthesized vocals. "Stalingrad" is an ambitious undertaking, a long progressive pounder with doomy tendencies which steam-rolls forward coming as a cross between Down and Pantera. The guys like to keep themselves busy with various other bands: the brutal death/grindcore "freaks" Brutal Massacre, the melodic death metal purveyors Chain Collector, and also their longest-running project, the classic death metal "veterans" Blood Red Throne.

Disease Inc. Full-length, 2008
Cleareyes EP, 2009

Official Site

NEOPHOBIA (AUSTRALIA)

Based on the debut, this outfit, whose line-up features Grahame Goode, one of the drum gurus on the Australian metal scene (Dark Order, among many other acts), pulls out a mix of power metal and post-thrash of the melodic laid-back variety with a few more intense pieces (the shredding wild galloper "The Almighty"; the more complex thrasher "Immigrant Enemy"; the heavy mid-pacer "Exorcist") scattered around although the dominant mood is light-hearted with a certain crossover flair quite reminiscent of the Scots The Almighty (to which the aforementioned song of the same title may be a tribute) including in the feelgood semi-drunken vocal department.
"Nothing" is "nothing" more than the pedestrian groovy post-thrash offered in heaps at the time, full of heavy rehashed riffs with no variety at all. Enough said...

Fear of the Future Full-length, 1993
Nothing Full-length, 1996

NEOPLASMA (NORWAY)

Based on "Watch the Fire", this act indulge in typical modern thrash/death with the staple dry mechanical guitars which get nicely vivid and semi-technical on "Communication Fail". Later on the space is taken by a fair amount of Meshuggah-esque chugs and stomps ("Alt Som Var", the elegiac "Imperium") those neutralized to an extent by more melodic progressive escapades (the atmospheric the title-track) and by more technical quirks, like the ones on unpredictable jumper "Chaos", the highlight on the album. The vocals are of the dual type, ones on the guttural death metal, the others on the shrieky bleck metal one.

Die with a Smile EP, 2008
Tumor of Hate Full-length, 2011
Watch the Fire Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NEPAL (ARGENTINA)

Nepal started with excellent classic thrash on their debut despite the rough and not very suitable vocals. "Ideologia" was a decent follow-up with a slightly more modern sound and even rougher vocals. With their last album the transformation into modern post-thrash has been complete, and it has little to offer which hasn't been done before; a sad epitaph for one of the more talented Argentinian metal bands.

Raza de Traidores Full-length, 1993
Ideologia Full-length, 1995
Manifiesto Full-length, 1997

Official Site

NEPHASTUS (BRAZIL)

Brutal technical thrash/death metal with more concentration on brutality than technicality, which diminishes its quality. At their best, these guys bring to mind Massacra and Hellwitch, but some of the songs are nothing more than just mindless bashing.

Tortuous Ways Full-length, 1991

NERO CIRCUS (UK)

Groovy 90's post-thrash mixed with Down-like stoner moments; this is heavy, slow-ish stuff with bluesy elements and very few attempts at more dynamic performance ("Hardline", "Not My Equal").

Human Pigs Full-Length, 1995

NERODIA (ITALY)

The demo: 4 songs of modern thrash/death metal with a few retro leanings; the music covers all possible tempos being at times brutally fast, but there's a lot of slow-ish heaviness as well as several jokey crossover moments, plus a couple of borrowings from The Black Album.

"Heretic Manifesto" delivers in a similar fashion providing a fast modern blend of thrash and death metal with the ultra-fast sections now coming with a big sense of melody not trying to hide their fascination with the Swedish school anymore sounding pretty close to early Dark Tranquillity.

Demo Demo, 2008
Heretic Manifesto Full-length, 2010

Official Site

NERVE (ITALY)

Based on "Fracture", this outfit provide impressive modern futuristic technical thrash with huge dramatic build-ups expressed through surprisingly short songs (3-4min). The shredding is unbearably heavy at times not without the help of several intense groovy sections. If someone thought that the groovy trends have nothing new to offer anymore, he/she can give this album a listen: "Scream" & "Revelation" are technical modern groove at its absolute best, and are not far from the finest hours of both Biomechanical and their compatriots Chaoswave. "Neither Here Nor There" incorporates brutal death metal moments and may remind you of what Nevermore did on a couple of tracks from "This Godless Endeavour". "Zero" thrashes harder with an overt classic edge and excellent technical implements, its strongly dynamic nature a contrast to the brooding dark rhythms on the following "Lenny Nero". "Waves" is a chaotic dramatic twister with a memorable chorus after which comes the break, the closing peaceful instrumental "The Reign of Thousand Years" which is basically tribal drums versus elusive acoustic guitars. The singer is a total fit to the very good music with his attached semi-shouty/semi-clean tirades which can carry quite a bit of melody when needed.

Getting Nervous Full-length, 2007
Hate Parade Full-length, 2010
Fracture Full-length, 2013

Official Site

NERVE GAS TRAGEDY (USA)

Based on "No Tomorrow", this is modern thrash/death metal with a few nods to the classic scene. The music alternates between heavy, slower sections and very fast, brutal ones; "Pray For Your Soul" is a nice example of a combination between the two.

Written In The Blood Of The Dead Full-length, 2005
No Tomorrow Full-length, 2006

My Space

NERVECELL (UAE)

A talented act from the Middle East this way comes; although the band are stationed in Dubai, the members come from adjacent countries: Lebanon, Jordan, and India. On the debut the guys unleash quite well executed technical thrash/death metal which goes towards the hyper-acrobatics of acts like Necophagist and Grotesque at the beginning (the complicated virtuoso piece "Vicious Circle Of Bloodshed"), but those complex "excursions" have their more laid-back analogues: the modern Swedish-style thrashy breaks on "Flesh & Memories" & "For Every Victim Fallen", etc. The fast riffage gets interlaced by infectious Oriental melodies, and the final result is fairly captivating the guys wisely avoiding to elaborate too much on the technical side leaving things to flow nicely without causing too many mind scratches. The singer is a low-tuned death metal growler sitting somewhere between Karl Willets (Bolth Thrower) and Chris Barnes (Cannibal Corpse).
"Psychogenocide" is in a very similar vein crossing hyper-technicality with straight-forward thrash-infused sections the latter leading the pack this time also blended with numerous melodic hooks aptly inserted among the fast-paced riffs. The title-track is a brilliant progressive technicaller, the highlight here, closely followed by the more aggresive death metal complexer "Shunq (To The Despaired ...King Of Darkness)". The Oriental motifs are also present, and are even more strongly felt (the closer "Nation's Plague").
"Past, Present...Torture" concentrates on death metal more, but the technical delivery is pretty much intact although these speedy rifforamas may come as too intense for the regular thrash metal fan. Reduction of speed would have been beneficial here and there as now the album comes as one big, not very decipherable fist in the ears. The listener will appreciate the pounding break ala "Extreme Aggression" (Kreator) on "Proxy War", the modern progressive thrashing on "D.N.A. (Diruo Nocens Acervus)", and the intriguing riff-configurations on "Habitual Deceit"; but the rest strictly belongs to the brutal death metal camp.

Preaching Venom Full-length, 2008
Psychogenocide Full-length, 2011
Past, Present...Torture Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NERVEKILLER (HUNGARY)

This band was formed by members (present and former) of other more renowned Hungarian acts: Watch My Dying, Undertaking, etc. The music here is quite close to the mechanical modern sound of Watch My Dying; this is semi-technical dry thrash metal, which sounds a bit clumsy and slow-ish, accompanied by hoarse shouted semi-death metal vocals. When the music picks more speed, it sounds quite appealing, like on the more energetic "Dream With Maggots" which will remind you of mid-90's Voivod.

Dream with Maggots EP, 2005

Official Site

NERVOSA (BRAZIL)

The EP: three cute girls from Brazil have gotten together for the creation of this intense tribute to the old school which rips with passion and sounds way more aggresive than the works of the other all-female outfit from their homeland: Volkana. "Time Of Death" is a vicious proto-death laced thrasher whcih will throw you into spontaneous headbanging before "Invisible Oppression" provides a more restrained crossover approach. "Masked Betrayer" is a dramatic more technical shredder in various paces wrapping it up with style and containing promises for the girls' future career development. The singer is a really good attached shouter who retains her Doro Pesch-like melodic blend all over.
"Victim of Yourself": the girls are back with a full-length this time, and the haunting instrumental intro already promises a lot. Things reach brutal extremes from the very beginning with the deathy opener "Twisted Values" which dictates the proceedings the latter calming down later staying close to early/mid-period Destruction the legendary Germans an inspiration for hordes of South American bands. The thrash attack never stops here even on more elaborate shredders like "Nasty Injury" the girls never sacrificing their venomous approach till the end. There's a lot of energy put into the making of this album, and although familiar, the material presented here should keep the listener on his/her moshing toes.
"Agony" is a moshing "agonizing monster" and the girls simply know no mercy even calling death metal for help on the corrosive "Theory of Conspiracy" and oon the excellent more technical piece "Deception". Death metal continues to be more prominent throughout the approach too brutal at times recalling the Merciless debut and the Brazilians Torture Squad on "Guerra Santa". The return to purer thrash is marked with the intriguing melodic cut "Failed System" which will remind of Holy Moses except in the aggressive death metal break. "Surrounded by Serpents" again "flirts" with both melody and more thrash before "Cyberwar" introduced uplifting crossover/speed metal rhythms to everyone's relief. The bonus track "Wayfarer" is a more relaxed mid-tempo thrasher which sounds like an entirely new band at times, especially in the clean vocal insertion at the end which these ears try to liken to Whitney Houston, but could be any other soul singer...

Time of Death EP, 2012
Victim of Yourself Full-Length, 2014
Agony Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

NESRAY (USA)

Progressive post-thrash with abstract surreal overtones; this is sterile clinical stuff coming as a mix of Coroner's "Grin" and Eldritch's "Reverse" with a pinch of more standard old school progressive. The guitars become too heavy and industrialized in a way not too dissimilar to mid-period Meshuggah, but expect this "intolerable" situation to be alleviated by more than just a few atmospheric balladic sections where quite cool clean vocals spring up as opposed to the vicious semi-whispers which supposedly stand for the main "distraction". So the guys' approach covers a wide gamut of influences which may sound a bit incoherent at first listen, but multi-faced music like this would inevitably have a lot to offer to the metal fan after a certain time spent with it.

Albtraum Full-Length, 2010

NESSUN DORMA (SPAIN)

These Spaniards play jumpy corey modern post-thrash which is seldom exciting or interesting assisted by very irritating synthesized vocals which come on top of the already annoying shouty main ones. A little bit of energy can be felt on the slightly faster "Malkoz Beteriko Lurra", but the rest is so rehashed and boring that even a short effort like this one would come as too much for the regular thrash metal fan.

Chopped in Half EP, 2011

Official Site

NETER (SPAIN)

This is a slassic mix of thrash and death metal which has everything: brutality, technicality, melody, often all co-existing within one song. The overall style recalls another very cool Spanish act from the 90's: Canker, but these guys are not so fond of technical performance. The pace is quite fast, and the blast-beats are more than just an occasional touch, seldom lasting through a whole song. Consequently this would be of bigger interest to death metal fans including those who fall for the battle-like sound of Bolt Thrower: the excellent steam-roller "Priometheus".

Nec Spe Nec Metu Full-length, 2009

Official Site

NETHERBOUND (BRAZIL)

Based on the full-length, this outfit offer fairly interesting progressive power/thrash which isn't totally devoid of hard thrashing moments ("Insanity", the abstract proto-headbanger "Systematic"). Some mechanical weirdness sneaks in on "Anthropomorphic", but it's technical speed/thrashing sweepers like "The Birth Of Evil" which make this album a winner. "Moral Dismemberment" is a stylish "Watchtower meets Psychotic Waltz" extravaganza with great leads, and the closer "The End Complete" "completes" the "journey" with the last portion of clever twisting riff-patterns and again some really fine melodic lead sections. The singer isn't a slouch, either, with his dramatic clean tember nicely complementing the impressive musical delivery.

Epidemic Salvation EP, 2013
Holy Human Plague Full-length, 2015

Official Site

NETHERDUSK (TURKEY)

These Turks serve interesting classic speed/thrash which combines speed and melody in almost equal dozes. "Ilk Gunah" acquires more progressive dimensions with more carefully plotted configuratons, but expect several fast-paced melees on it, too. Elsewhere we have the more restrained power metal flair on "Dünyadan Kalanlar", the balladic elegiac pathos on "Tatli Ruyalar", and the heavy stomps on the closing "Kizil Gokyuzu". The vocals are of the dual type, some being clean and emotional, others adding a more brutal death metal fragrance to the otherwise melodic proceedings.

Dunyadan Kalanlar Full-length, 2017

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NETHERSTORM (HOLLAND)

A 4-song demo of typical modern thrash/death metal, relying more on melody blending fast and slower sections in a way not dissimilar to Dark Tranquillity on "Damage Done" and "Haven".

Chaos from the Sky Demo, 2009

Official Site

NETHERWARD (CANADA)

This act plays melodic modern thrash/death with more elaborate, progressive decorations the latter never overdone, also giving enough space for the more speedy setions to develop (check out the perennial headbanger "Bloodmeal") which are still just an addition. The shadow of the Gothenburg school looms heavily over this offering which also boasts intriguing song-titles ("Galactic Cannibalism" which is an otherwise compelling technical piece with a few pretty puzzling riffs) and gruff semi-shouty death metal vocals.

BloodMeal Full-Length, 2012

Official Site

NETVIL (PORTUGAL)

Based on the Promo, this band play dark retro thrash with interesting doomy tendencies which are severely hampered by the bad sound quality. "The New Testament Of Death" is a short atmospheric opener, and "AIDS" is a melo-power/thrasher with an epic shade. "Walpurgis" is another not very intense mid-pacer ruined by the very gruff unrehearsed death metal vocals.

Promo Tape 1993 Demo, 1993
Past, Present... Demo, 1995

NEUMA (POLAND)

Heavy groovy, mostly slow-ish post-thrash (based on the debut) with a strong industrial edge, at times quite abstract and hard to swallow, sounding like more aggressive Helmet who meet the Canadians Soulstorm somewhere along the way, who have just helped Ministry with the recording of "Filth Pig", "rudely" interrupted by fast, and even more bizarre moments ("Neuma"). This is music for a very restricted crowd, and even this crowd has to be in the right mood, otherwise...

Neuma Full-length, 2003
Weather Full-length, 2006

NEURASTHENIA (ITALY)

A fairly good debut which combines the glorious speed/thrash metal of early Angel Dust and Paradox with the Bay Area masters: Vio-lence, Forbidden, etc. The tempo is quite energetic, but never too aggressive, and the guys are not strangers to intriguing, more technical riffage ("Neurasthenia"). The album actually begins in a more moderate fashion with the more melodic opener with the sinister title "Screaming Corpse", but the next "Feel Possessed" already shows more teeth, recalling Metallica and Paradox with a more melodic twist. "In Loving Of..." slows down to almost semi-balladic dimensions, but "Majestic March" is heads-down speed/thrash, fast and sharp. The remaining tracks keep the intensity, and on some (the closing "Night Under Terror") the spirit of the legendary "Heresy" (Paradox) can easily be felt. With quality acts like that (Rainspawn, Urto, Thy Gate Beyond, Brutaliator, Death Mechanism, to name a few), it's just a matter of time before Italy becomes the new thrash metal motherland in Europe.

"Your Omen" is not a far cry from the debut with the focus now firmly being on Paradox: well-played classic speed/thrash with a modern production, quite close to "Collision Course", and "Electrify" on the mellower parts. The title-track is a brisk energetic opener followed by "Go Fuck Themselves" which, despite the not very decent title, offers fast riffs and nice melodies plus a catchy chorus. "Church of Tomorrow" is a sudden switch to technical thrash reducing the speed a bit except on the furious outburst at the end. "Filthy Lucre" carries the spirit of the 90's power/speed metal movement, but "Liar #1" cancels it being a more ordinary slower power metal composition. After this shaky middle section things get back on track with the speed/thrashing delights "No Politics" and "Thrash is Back in Town", and the excellent lashing closer "I Hate my Family", a speed/thrashfest at its finest also recalling the best from the Polish Hellfire. "Thrash is back in town", no doubt about it, and hopefully it'll spread over the whole province...

Possessed Full-length, 2007
Your Omen Full-length, 2009

Official Site

NEURINOME (FRANCE)

This is a classic thrash/death metal affair with a noisy production and a few references towards the Gothenburg school. The guys shred with competence, but also a little imagination, the final product sounding too generic and "deja vu"-like to really stike a cord into the fans' hearts. The guitar licks are melodic and memorable the band never too tempted to play fast except on isolated sections.

Mon Nom Est Legion Full-Length, 2009

Official Site

NEURO TOXIN (USA)

Based on the "World Wide Hatred" demo, these guys pull out classy technical thrash quite close to Gammacide, only choppier and not as fast. The sound smells death metal in the more intense parts ("Inside the Dark"), but just a little, and the tempo changes will make your head spin as well as the great technical guitars. The musicianship is on a really high level, also displayed by the great bass work and the sparce, but very stylish leads, all this shaking hands on the magnificent instrumental "Acid Death" near the end.

"End of Design" is a bit of a letdown with the aggression reduced to a certain extent, and although the riffs are heavy and still quite technical, and sometimes the music picks up speed, this demo is not as impressive. "Public Execution" is the only exception here which brings back the flamboyant style of the debut demo, but only for 2.5 min.

World Wide Hatred Demo, 1990
End of Design Demo, 1990
Neurotoxin Demo, 1994

NEURODELIRI (ITALY)

One would hardly be very enthusiastic to check this short-lived continuation of the Italian black/thrash metal legends Bulldozer after the embarrassment which their swansong (the "Dance got Sick!" EP) was. Those who had given it a chance back in those days, have found their idols indulging in laid-back speed/proto-thrash metal producing an amateurish tribute to Motorhead and Tank with distorted guitars and merry drunken vocals; pretty basic and not really engaging, but way better than the aforementioned atrocious EP. Still, it doesn't really deserve to carry the name of arguably the best Bulldozer album.

Neurodeliri Full-length, 1993

NEURONIA (POLAND)

Based on "Follow the White Mouse", these Poles play laid-back modern post-thrash with progressive Tool-ish touches. The music isn't very eventful sticking to familiar mid-paced patterns with industrial and groovy overtones, and a few numbers are pure alternative heavy rockers where good clean vocals can be heard as opposed to the main not very impressive gruff semi-death metal ones.
The EP is even milder adhering to too many melodic hooks and peaceful semi-balladic sections which would by all means find their fans with their brooding atmosphere and more complex arrangements, but for the regular thrash metal fan this short effort would be a total waste of time.
"Under the Same Sky" starts very promisingly with the brutal headbanging opner "Good Clean Fun" and the band try to continue in the same bombastic manner for a string of tracks achieving fairly intense atmosphere the mid-paced numbers not that many mostly occupying the 2nd half where the guys slow down concentrating more on the melody the culmination reached on the excelllent closing ballad "Last Shot".

The Winter of My Heart Full-length, 2008
Follow the White Mouse Full-length, 2010
Insanity Relapse EP, 2012
Under the Same Sky Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NEUROOT (HOLLAND)

These guys have been stalwarts on the Dutch hardcore scene, and on this album their roots are clearly audible. This is fast energetic thrash/crossover with gruff semi-death metal vocals, and the occasional nod to heavy metal ("The End"). The approach is pretty one-dimensional, though, consisting of speedy very simplistic riffs, with few adherences to pure thrash ("Curse Of Wealth").

Plead Insanity Full-length, 1988

My Space

NEUROSIS (GREECE)

Based on the demo, these Greeks play violent death-tinged thrash with screechy black metal vocals. The guys bash with no mercy playing fast without slowing down, and this intensity inevitably carries a certain shade of hardcore with it. In other words, all the 4 songs merge into one big composition starting and finishing in the same extreme fashion "supported" by a not very clear sound quality.

The Day After Demo, 1989
Decapitated Compilation EP Split, 1990

NEUROSIS (USA)

These progressive/sludge/hardcore legends entertained themselves on their first album playing cool thrash/crossover, quite similar to early Prong and D.R.I. The tempo is energetic and brisk, with more unusual tracks ("Black"), still far from their future exploits, but having this slightly avantgarde touch. On the other extreme we have the short, 1-2min aggressive bombs ("Training", "Stalemate"), and a couple of tracks which carry the late 70's/early-80's punk spirit ("United Sheep", "Progress").

Pain of Mind Full-length, 1988

My Space

NEUROSIS INC (COLOMBIA)

Based on "Verdun 1916", this band plays competent thrash/death metal which recalls Pestilence's debut and Death's "Spiritual Healing". "Involucion" shows the band's slower and more technical side which features nice Chuck Schuldiner (R.I.P.) riffs typical for Death's later period; an impressive debut which comes with the perfect balance between aggression and technicality, with more concentration on the latter.

"Subversivos Espirituales" is another strong effort showing the band focusing on death metal a bit more, without losing the technical edge, here also accompanied by haunting keyboard tunes which decorate almost every song. The track "Thrash Metal", ironically, is the softest one here, being crossover and not really hard-hitting; could have been considered a parody of the genre, if it was coming out of the hands of some non-thrash metal act. "Subversivos Espirituales" is a very good operatic instrumental, with a great interplay between the guitars and the keyboards. "The Hate Song" finally pays tribute to thrash metal coming again with atmospheric operatic sections: a fine mid-paced thrasher with impressive guitar work. Next comes a nice version of Venom's "Countess Bathory", very well suited to the majestic atmosphere of the album. But this is not the end, as right after that comes the brilliant "Bautizados en Rencor", a death/thrash riff-fest which sounds like a leftover from the debut, and the short up-tempo piece "Open Wound".

"Masters of Thrash" consists of covers only, starting with two Slayer ones ("Post Mortem", "Raining Blood"), and later adding Metallica, Death, Destruction, Hallows Eve, Asphyx, among others. The unlikely cover is Motley Crue's "Knock'em Dead Kid" (I doubt if they have ever been "masters of thrash"!? Maybe I miss some of their albums!?), although it comes from the band's finest work "Shout at the Devil". All covers are well done, faithfully, but lacking the stylish flavour which their original works used to carry (keyboards, technical licks, etc.).

Verdun 1916 Full-length, 1995
Karma Full-length, 1996
Subversivos Espirituales Full-length, 2005
Masters of Thrash Full-length, 2007

Official Site

NEUROTHING (POLAND)

The EP: thrash/death metal of the modern type, but not very fast, and quite technical at times, carrying this mechanical, dry atmosphere typical for the works of bands like later period Obliveon, or the Americans Baghead. It becomes slightly monotonous later, but fans of the more clinical, cold, industrialized sound will enjoy that.

The music on "Murder Book" has become even more clinical and drier, and there's a certain amount of groove added which stifles the few attempts at a faster play. As a whole the approach is jumpy and hectic, but there aren't many really technical riffs since the pattern is repeated on almost every track: jumpy mechanical guitars in mid-tempo trying to overcome the groove which isn't very easy, another obstacle being the forceful hardcore shouter behind the mike.

Vanishing Celestial Bodies EP, 2005
Murder Book Full-Length, 2009

Official Site

NEUROTIC MACHINERY (CZECH)

Based on "Opsialgia", these Czechs, who also play vicious black metal under the name Neron, pull out intense modern thrash with both the groovy and the Swedish school obvious influences. Faster and slower numbers take turns the latter taking over in the 2nd half which is much less impressive with numerous melodic hooks and a very nice exiting acoustic passage on the closing "Mechanical Angel". The singer is a pretty ordinary death metal growler resembling Ville Laihiala (Sentenced, his vocals on "Amok", above all).

The "Exi(s)t" EP is a contrasting mix of dreamy calm moments and sudden more aggressive cuts and doesn't deliver the whole time sounding derivative and not very inspired. The approach is again on the modern Gothenburg-influenced side with very few attempts at a more dynamic play (the jumpy closer "Vertigo" which opens for several drastic technical moments).

Catalept Full-length, 2007
Opsialgia Full-length, 2010
Exi(s)t EP, 2012

Official Site

NEUROTICA (ROMANIA)

Based on the debut, this act play crunchy Bay-Areasque thrash (think Metallica, Testament) which sounds refreshingly classic for the time of release, and not only but the guys do a fairly decent job with clever, semi-technical guitar work ("God Save Me") and good clean, attached vocals. The sound quality is a bit fuzzy stifling the otherwise cool leads. "Politicians" is a more friendly power/thrasher quite reminiscent of the material on Testament's "The Ritual", and after it the songs are all mellower with more clearly expressed power metal-ish tendencies hitting the top/bottom with the funky/rock'n roll cover of the evergreen "Don't Worry, Be Happy".

Neurotica Full-length, 1994
Bio Full-length, 1998

NEUROTOMY (ITALY)

Based on the debut demo, this act specialize in dark atmospheric thrash/death which begins with a sprawling balladic intro ("Disillusion") before "Experiment In Hate" enters the scene with heavy seismic riffs the steam-roller march assisted by semi-whispered deathy vocals and brief balladic respites. "Catalepsy" nicely speeds up reaching death metal dimensions with ease, and "My Astral Deformities" thrashes in a more hectic, semi-technical manner with sparse more brutal deathy inclusons.

In Extremis Demo, 1996
Beginning Holocaust Demo, 1998
Life Is Fading into Black Demo, 2000

Official Site

NEUROTOXICO (GUATEMALA)

Three songs of bashing thrashcore with noisy guitars and shouty hardcore vocals; this is energetic stuff of the direct, simplistic variety, which could pass for both modern and classic.

Demo Demo, 2011

NEUROTOXIN (USA, CA)

Based on the full-length, this band mix quite well classic and modern thrash metal. The music stays closer to the classic school most of the time recalling some heroes from the Bay Area scene: Forbidden, Heathen, etc.; it's quite energetic without becoming very aggressive with a few mid-paced pieces thrown in. "Blood-Stained Sunset" is a short, but very effective technical thrasher where the band slow down, but come up with arguably the best riffs on the album. "Ashes Through the Sky" is the other highlight, not fast, featuring nice lead guitar and heavy, meaty riffs speeding up admirably near the end.

Harvest Your Wrath EP, 2004
Harvest Your Wrath Full-length, 2004
VSL Demo, 2007

Official Site

NEUROTOXIN (USA, IL)

Based on the "Nothing in Focus" demo, this act specialize in state-of-the-art, highly stylish technical thrash with expressive bass presence. The title-track is a jumpy, hectic mid-pacer which pulls out a surprising speedy exit. "Pain In My Grasp" is a meandering dramatic "vortex" with abrupt tempo-changes which may be hard to follow due to their weird, outlandish application. "End Of Design" is another less ordinary shredder with choppy rhythms reminiscent of Coroner and Forced Entry, with bizarre melodies floating around beside atmospheric doomy undercurrents. The final "Before The Sleep" thrashes harder, but don't expect any respite in the technicality department since the riff-patterns are even more befuddling with an illogical Mekond Delta-sque flair, piling on top of each ther to a really disorienting effect among the bursts of more aggressive thrashing and the nice virtuoso lead sections. The singer may be a bit of a letdown with his angry, quarrelsome baritone. Everything is "in focus" here, if you ask me; the music is nothing short of outstanding making this talented outfit one of the best kept secrets from the 90's US underground.
The debut demo is built around much more immediate, bashing riff-patterns although the bass work is already quite striking, and shades of more technical play can be found, like on the not very predictable brutal shredder "Suffering Belief", and the hectic diverse instrumental "Acid Bath". "Inside The Dark" is also worth mentioning with its creepy amorphous guitars which switch the tempos at will creating a really hallucinogenic atmosphere among the fast-paced, hard-hitting sections.
The "End of Design" demo features two songs ("Suffering Belief" & "Public Execution") from the first effort, and also four new pieces among which "Rebirth" is a wonderful speedy technicaller with a wide arsenal of tempos and time-signatures, not to mention the superb short lead-driven dashes and the brilliant surreal melodic tunes. "Solitude" is a creepy minimalistic shredder with macabre jumpy rhythms and sudden fast-paced explosions with the bass burping prominently on the side, adding more to the outlandish character of this masterpiece. The title-track, also included on the next demo, is a marvellous, albeit quite bizarre concoction of virtuous melodies and choppy serpentine riff-formulas in the best tradition of Coroner; and "Darkened Trust" is a standout progressive thrasher ala Aftermath's "Eyes of Tomorrow" acquiring a more orthodox flair on the galloping stride in the middle, before the spacing out becomes complete in the second half with some of the jumpiest, most jarring riff applications this side of Atheist's "Unquestionable Presence". This is another no-brainer from one of the most astonishing unsung heroes from the US underground, a flawless piece of art that may make one spend years digging for gems of the kind.

World Wide Hatred Demo, 1990
End of Design Demo, 1990
Nothing in Focus Demo, 1992
Neurotoxin Demo, 1994

NEUS (COLOMBIA)

A 3-song EP of raw old school thrash which reminds of late-period Bulldozer (two of the songs) with several slower, atmospheric black metal-tinged sections, and one all-out aggressive thrasher ala Protector ("Welcome Terrorizer").

Retroceso EP, 1993

NEUTRAL SHOCK (USA)

Groovy post-thrash survived all the way to the late-00's; not such a big surprise the guys doing their bid the very aggro shouty vocals taking quite a bit of space. A few interesting balladic moments ("Execution Room") spice the proceedings where also cool clean vocals can be heard alongside gutural brutal death metal ones. Still, the diversity isn't very big the dominant delivery perfectly exemplified by the high-octane doomster "Silence Yourself". Some of the band members had a spell with the black/death metal formation Full Rage a few years earlier.

Undying Breed Full-length, 2007

Official Site

NEUTRON HAMMER (FINLAND)

Based on the "Extermination Kommand" EP, these Finns offer rough underground black/thrash with a playful vibe recalling both Motorhead and mid-period Impaled Nazarene. The guys sometimes bash like demented with clear shades of grind, but the contrasting, stomping Celtic Frost-like sections ("Ride with Vengeance") are just around the corner. The singer growls in a scary, but intelligible, manner akin to Rick Scythe (Usurper). The musicians are involved in quite a few other projects around the Finnish underground: the black metal formation Vitsaus, the black/thrash hybriders Crosswrecker, the retro thrash act Sacrificial Dagger, etc.

The full-length offers more brutal bash and is way more aggressive than the music on the EP's. The guys blast their way through seldom pausing for a break those breaks coming in the form of more controlled early Celtic Frost-esque stomps ("Contaminated Graves", the creepy closer "Menstrual Mass"). The rest is somewhere between the early outrages of Cryptic Slaughter and the Sarcofago debut the singer now impersonating Tom G. Warrior, and again Rick Scythe (Usurper), with a more growly deathy pinch.

Damnation's Bringer EP, 2006
Extermination Kommand EP, 2009
Iron Storm Evocation Full-Length, 2012

Official Site

NEVER (POLAND)

This talented outfit has ties to the technical death metal masters Sceptic, including the guitar virtuoso Jacek Hiro, although it's not very clear on which album the Sceptic musicians have taken part (anyone?). The guys acquit themselves with a string of 3 immaculate technical thrash metal affairs with clear shades of death ala late-period Death and the Aussies Alarum. The debut is a striking effort thrashing with both technicality and speed on the opening "Flashback", which betrays the Death influence, also scoring high with great melodic leads and outstanding bass support. The two sides of the band's music come seamlessly mixed once again on the following "Ante Meridiem", but "Citizen's Vote" concentrates on the speedy side lashing fast sharp riffs alleviated by fine leads which are on a fairly high level the whole time. "Monument" is vintage late-period Death, and could perfectly fit the dynamic complex sound of "The Sound of Perseverance". "What If" follows a similar pattern containing a nice balladic break, and "Audience Not Allowed" goes up the speed scale once more, where "World Wide Village" also belongs. The last two tracks focus more on the "melody vs. technicality" formula which produces fine results the closer "No Ideology" alone overflowing with addictive melodic hooks which one may start humming at some point.

"Mind Regress" isn't too different from the debut although it may promise more with the brilliant speedy technical opener "Mind Regress" serving a compelling amalgam of time and tempo changes throughout its nearly 7-min. Then comes "Devilish Simplicity" which indeed offers "simple" direct thrash/death metal, fast uncompromising stuff without too many technical "decorations". "A Fucking Con", on the other hand, is exemplary complex thrash/death with a great keyboard-driven mid-break and puzzling twisting guitar decisions. "Birthright" has a surprisingly mild balladic intro before starting thrashing on full-throttle being quite explosive and relentless towards the end. "The Chapter Two" is a great progressive composition combining furious sections, quiet balladic lead-driven ones, and serpentine technical riffs. More relaxed (technicality-wise) stuff follows on the next 3 songs which flow in a fast, but also melodic, fashion, before another larger-than-life opus hits us at the end: "Unamed...Unleashed The Chaos" is the definitive progressive thrash instrumental, a symphony of addictive melodies, brilliant Oriental leads, steel precise technicality, controlled speed, escalating dramatism, and more all mixed together within 9-min to produce the best possible finish to this grand effort.

Then the band took a break which took voluminous proportions extending to seven whole years when the guys were "back to the front" with "Back to the Front", another stellar achievement immediately making its claim at greatness with the multi-layered progressive opener "A.M.O.R (Another Mutation of Reality)" which brings back the Death influences the latter partially abandoned on the follow-up. "Fiction Generator" excels in melody still remaining a pretty intense speedster for most of the time with a very effective dry technical exiting passage. "Too Blind" is a marvellous twisted technical piece ala Coroner lashing fast and hard at some point, also featuring great doomy hooks as a finishing touch. The title-track is a masterpiece of technical speed/thrash metal moshing fast all over also serving some of the finest melodies ever heard on a thrash metal effort; addictive stuff which some of you may end up listening over and over. "Questions Within" is the "pause", and well deserved at that, being a more dreamy, much slower, laid-back take on the band's flamboyant style with Swedish melo-death insertions and mellower epic overtones. Then the "massacre" continues with the more abstract Coroner-esque "2996", a labyrinthine hallucinogenic piece with very puzzling meandering riffs, one of the guys' finest "exploits". "And I" introduces a guest star: the ex-Vader guitarist Mauser (real name: Maurycy Stefanowicz) who assists with a couple of riffs to aggravate the effect from this otherwise more conventional melodic thrash/death metal offering, slightly influencing the next "Fatherland". The bigger complexity is more than welcome back on "Undisputed Inability" which is a virtuoso track with exemplary guitar performance boasting intense fast passages and a great atmospheric balladic lead-driven interlude. "Painted Black" is state-of-the-art technical/progressive thrash/death blending fast and elaborate sections helped by the vocal participation of the other star guesting here: the Arch Enemy singer Angela Kossow who one may have problems recognizing since the band singer's husky low-tuned semi-whispered renditions are very close to the ones of the Swedes' frontwoman. "Grain Of Sand" gracefully finishes this meisterwerk with the last portion of swirling riffs offered on a heavier mid-tempo base this time, a partial "relief" from the generally quite energetic delivery which will be a paradise for both the headbangers and the complex metal lovers.

Monument Full-length, 2000
Mind Regress Full-length, 2002
Back to the Front Full-length, 2009

Official Site

NEVER (RUSSIA)

These Russians play nice energetic retro thrash with a less serious crossover attitude springing up from time to time. The joy is generally big recalling the one from the mid-period efforts of their compatriots Master: check out the perennial moshing delight "The Beer", or the more technical shredder at the end "Excell Light" which is followed by the actual closer, a short jokey take on the Russian folk song "Valenki". The vocalist doesn't work too hard constantly supported by his comrades on the catchy shouty choruses and elsewhere.

Evening Before Demo, 1993

NEVER NIGHT (ITALY)

A decent mix of classic and modern thrash akin to mid-period Squealer with references to both speed and power metal the former gracefully reflected on the brisk speedster "Night Of Death". Harder speed/thrash metal can be heard on "The Reaper" which comes after two peaceful balladic inerludes called "Fly" (1 & 2). The problem is that afterwards the music takes mellower proportions with plenty of melodic hooks seldom leaving the mid-pace. The singer has a cool clean mid-ranged tember again recalling Andy "Henner" Allendorfer (R.I.P.) from Squealer again.

Never Night Full-length, 2008

Official Site

NEVER SLEEP (USA)

The guys apparently had a very good chemistry between them because they had several projects together at roughly the same time, plus/minus a year: the heavy/power metal formation Godstrike; the power metal outfit Ground Zero which is the immediate precursor of the effort reviewed here; and the power metal heroes Machinery who survived long enough to leave the demo stage with two full-lengths released in the mid-90's, and a reunion witnessed two years ago. The music at display here is still pretty much along the power metal canons with a more aggressive play on the title-track which is a volcanic galloping power/thrasher with an awesome bass bottom; and "Never Sleep" which is a dramatic cut with epic "decorations". "Brainstorm" is a nice clever technical isntrumental deprived of the not bad mid-ranged clean vocals; and the closer "Listen Up" is a dark diverse shredder with echoes of Sanctuary and the Canadians Outbreak. This is good, albeit roughly produced, music which may arouse the fans' interest in tracking the other guys' projects.

Crime Don't Pay EP, 1989

NEVER WE SEE (USA)

Another "one man does it all" venture which sees the guy (named Timothy Scarecrow Preciado) providing lengthy thought-out compositions which evolve around melodic meandering riffs with a stylish progressive edge, but the lack of speed on most of them makes this album a bit of an underwhelmer, especially with quiet orchestral interludes like "Dangerous Imaginations" also present. "The Architecture Of Beings" wakes up for more dynamic riffage despite its length (8.5-min), but it's "Man Of Its Own Kind" which shines the brightest with its inspired technical delivery. The almost 11-min long "Your Time Is Up" is already a pullback with its laid-back guitar approach, and things don't change much on the remaining songs all of them wrapped in plenty of atmosphere, but boasting very few interesting decisions. Timothy sings in a comprehesive semi-shouty deathy manner seldom rising above the not very exciting musical delivery.

Never We See Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NEVERBORN (AUSTRALIA)

Based on "Decimator", this act offers interesting hyper-active thrash/death metal which is very high on energy in a way not too far from the Brits Biomechanical, or even the Swedes Altered Aeon at times. "Always Watching Me" is an excellent very dynamic opener jumping high and low offering a wide amalgam of tempos, plus a cool semi-melodic chorus. The title-track is a more thrashy version of early Fear Factory, another hard-hitting, albeit not as diverse, number with a great keyboard/piano support (which shows up on at least half of the songs, and is a very stylish unobtrusive addition) and a smashing rhythm section. "After The Thunder" follows a similar pattern, but is more emotional and atmospheric, with deeper keyboard tunes and very cool leads. "Coming After You" starts in a sleepy gothic manner with pianos and slower riffs, but soon the guys start moshing without mercy adhering to a couple of blasts as well. "Why" is a nice progressive number, eventful and hard to predict with several time and tempo changes, again including a short blasting break. Then comes a string of less impressive not as varied songs before the coming of "I Am The Cure" and "Burned To Ash", two brisk modern mechanical thrashers with the cool memorable semi-choruses featured again. The end is the ambitious multi-layered opus "Everyone Will Pay" which has touches of industrial, epic/doom, and cosmic larger-than-life arrangements (remember Biomechanical) which, despite the complete lack of speed, delivers on all counts evoking a surreal spacey atmosphere. It would be interesting to check whether this expressive style has been introduced on the band's earlier releases...

Madness, My Friend Full-length, 2006
1000 Miles of Hell Full-length, 2007
Decimator Full-length, 2010

My Space

NEVERDIE (SPAIN)

Surprisingly fresh-sounding, for the time of release I mean, retro thrash with ripping guitars, playful leads, and not very pleasant shouty death metal vocals. The shreds are engaging with a lot of edge and the tempos vary staying more in the heavy mid-paced parametres supported by a thunderous bass bottom. It's a pity that the guys gave up shortly after this effort; some of them are still around, though, with the black/doom metal outfit N'fcll.

La Faz Oculta EP, 1997

Official Site

NEVERMORE (USA, New York)

This band combines American power metal (the opener) with the speed/thrash aesthetics of early Metallica and Flotsam & Jetsam: this is cool mid to up-tempo speed/power/thrash metal which nicely speeds up whenever necessary: the excellent galloping "Maker of Man", and even manages to thrash with force on occasion: "On The Outside", which could have been lent to the band by the Flotsams (joking, of course), after failing to qualify for "Doomsday for the Deceiver". "Break On Through" is the odd choice here: a cover of The Doors' hit served with a cool fast thrashy ending.

Nevermore EP, 1989

NEVERMORE (USA, Seattle)

Nevermore was formed by the members of Sanctuary (it's not very clear what caused the name change; anyone?). At least on the debut one could clearly hear shades of Sanctuary among the heavy, doomy, semi-technical riffs. Warrel Dane's vocals on the Nevermore albums are generally lower-pitched, with very rare reaches for the higher notes. On "Politics Of Ecstasy" the band went heads-down into thrash, and combined with the dark progressive music of the debut, they forged a unique sound which would often be imitated by many bands in the years to come. Throughout the years these guys managed to establish themselves as one of the leading bands on the scene. All their albums are highly recommended; this is the definitive progressive power/thrash metal act of modern times.

"The Obsidian Conspiracy" has a heavy boulder lying on its shoulders coming right after the "godly" "This Godless Endeavor", although the 5-year gap is already an indication that something different could have been stirred up. So, has this album at least preserved the high level from the previous one? Well, the answer is: no; not by a long shot. The technical prowess of "This Godless Endeavor" is seldom felt, and the approach now is a mix of the dark brooding style of the debut and the slightly more elaborate one of "Dead Heart in a Dead World"; which still means that it can't possibly be a total waste. The monstrous technical riffs in the beginning of the opener "The Termination Proclamation" promise a lot, but such technicality isn't encountered many times later on the album flowing in a heavy mid-tempo with Warrel Dane leading the show the latter given quite a room to perform although he hardly needed this having proven his worth ages ago. There are quite a few balladic leanings including a very good full-blooded ballad ("The Blue Marble And The New Soul") which retouches the sharpness leaving the final damage to the more dynamic closer "The Obsidian Conspiracy" the latter thrashing confidently with bridled fury although it hardly makes up for the not very eventful standard material heard earlier. With Nevermore one could never know in what direction things may shift, but even at their least surprising and most repetitive they still deliver better than many of the modern acts around.

Nevermore Full-length, 1995
In Memory EP, 1996
The Politics of Ecstasy Full-length, 1996
Dreaming Neon Black Full-length, 1999
Dead Heart in a Dead World Full-length, 2000
Believe in Nothing Single, 2000
Enemies of Reality Full-length, 2003
This Godless Endeavor Full-length, 2005
The Obsidian Conspiracy Full-length, 2010

Official Site

NEVERTRUST (GERMANY)

Based on "Veto", this act play prototypical modern thrash, a chuggy stomping affair done without much imagination, but having a curious dark quality around it (check out the pensive gothic-tinged "Infinity"). The dark tone doesn't require any speedy sections, and consequently there are none here, or at least very few. So diversity is not the name of the game here, and at some point the listener may want to switch to something more vivid: the latter is only provided on the larger-than-life opus at the end "Violent Crisis" which is an amalgam of influences some of which are fast crossover-tinged ones squeezed among the heavy pounding riffage which surprisingly sounds more optimistic and jollier as a finishing touch.

Incoming Society Full-length, 2007
Eye of the Observer EP, 2009
Veto Full-length, 2011

Official Site

NEW EDEN (USA)

This band was founded by the talented guitarist Horacio Colmenares in the mid 90's, who wanted to give a lesson in history to the young metal generation by telling them about the glorious power/thrash metal scene which The US had 10 years ago. "Through The Make Believe" is a splashing debut of vintage American power/thrash metal with a nice technical edge, quite close to the works of Helstar, Liege Lord, Aftermath, Attacker. The opener "Nightmare" is a mighty up-tempo shredder with razor-sharp riffs and great leads. It sets the tone for what follows until the coming of the semi-ballad "Now That You Have Gone" which is placed in the middle, followed by the speed metal killer "Unlock the Door" and the technical piece "Symptoms of Time". "Piracy" is the more melodic power metal number, but its less hard-hitting approach is cancelled by another fine technical shredder: "Sunshine". The closing "Empty Man" is the most complex, progressive song, exiting this promising debut with style.

Having done a much better job than the last offerings of Jag Panzer and Omen, the band quickly attracted a lot of attention from both sides of the Atlantic ocean. And it didn't take too long for some of the old stars to seek shelter under their banner. James Rivera was the fastest to offer his services, and the band's future with him on board looked even brighter. What followed, however, remains one of the biggest mysteries of the metal scene of the 90's: while the fans were eagerly expecting a follow-up, Colmenares announced a completely new line-up, with all of his old colleagues, as well as Rivera, gone. Whether Rivera cunningly sneaked into the band's camp just to steal those talented musicians in order to use them for his new band, or they left on their own will, following the more experienced, and well established on the scene authority, again, remains a mystery. Instead of holding a grudge against those who suddenly "abandoned the ship" (Helstar had a song of that title from "Distant Thunder"), or making a big deal out of it, Colmenares made use of his time to find new people, and finally "Obscure Master Plan" became a fact.
The new album considerably toned down the aggressive thrashy riffage from the debut, and elaborated on the more power/speed metal side of their style: a tendency clearly shown with the heavy, more complex opener "The Promise". "Evil Logic", which follows, is a cool speed metal piece, but later on the music loses the energy, opting for a more laid-back, more elaborate approach: "Epitaph", "Flicker Of Faith", the semi-ballad "Shades Of You". The more direct fast-paced riffage comes back for the short "Shadows", but the real winner here is the final "Land Of Filth And Money" which is a fine progressive power metal composition. Thrash metal seems a distant memory on this one, and later fans of the more appealing and more hard-hitting style of the debut must have joined the band formed by Rivera and the former New Eden members, Destiny's End.

The sophomore effort was relatively warmly welcome by the fanbase, but now the band had a very strong rival in the face of Destiny's End, and Colmenares had to think carefully this time before making his next step. Logically, the thinking process took longer and led to the change of singers; the former Steel Prophet singer Rick Mythiasin came on board, but he played it fair, and stayed with Colmenares without luring away any of his musicians. "Stagnant Progression" is a great effort showing the band returning to the more thrashy riffage last heard on the debut by increasing the complexity. "Threshold Of Tolerance" starts in an awesome technical fashion followed by the mighty thrashy riff-monster "Contemptous World". "Advocate" is another killing number which could fit very well into "Nosferatu", boasting brilliant lead guitar work as well. "No Ill Intent" and "Mortal Realizations" are marvellous exercises in technical shredding. "Emptiness" is the obligatory ballad, but watch out for the next "Pawn For The King": a brilliant raging thrasher. "Stagnant Progression" is standout technical speed/thrash, but all this comes overshadowed (this depends on the taste, of course) by the 8-min progressive multi-layered masterpiece "Freezing My Darkside", which alternates fierce speedy passages with atmospheric quiet moments. Considered by many the band's finest achievement, and again having received a hot reception by the fans, it shouldn't take too long for Colmenares and Co. to come with a follow-up.

Apparently both acts (New Eden & Steel Prophet) seem to co-operate quite well together as both Mythiasin and Colmenares are taking part in the recording of the new Steel Prophet album.
"Solving for X": one can only wonder at the unexplained very long gaps which some acts take between albums... Even when James Rivera took away all the line-up several years ago, Colmenares managed to find full replacements just a few months later. Listening to this masterpiece, the fan may feel sad both because he had to wait for such a long time for it, and because of the anticipation for another big hiatus until the eventual follow-up.

The vocals are now handled by Rod Arias who may be remembered by those who used to delve in the obscure gems from the US underground: he sang for the one album-wonder Recon whose 1990 full-length "Behind Enemy Lines" was a small phenomenon back in the days, a real gem of expertly-crafted progressive/power metal. The man does a very good job assisting this smashing classic speed/thrash which represents the genre at its most shining best. "Anthem Of Hate" opens the album with edgy speedy riffs which stay around for the following "Flames For Hades" which is razor-sharp thrash to the bone. A slight relief would be the nice melodic leads on the more carefree speedster "Flames For Hades" as well as the more relaxed speed/power metal hooks on "The Not Self". There is a lot of "unsolved aggression" roaming around as evident from the next "Unsolved Aggressions" which is scarily aggressive speed/thrash. "Life Not Death" recalls the more technical infatuations of the last album, and is generally an "eagle fly free" composition with the soaring melodies and the emotional vocals. "Searching The Loss" is a heavy shredder which influences the slightly faster "Crawling Erect" the latter scoring high in the lead department as well. The last string of songs concentrates on smashing mid-paced riffage with a few more dramatic galloping insertions followed by the balladic closer "Three Words", a fitting, albeit surprising, epitaph to this no-brainer of classic metal which has all the rights to look at the "album of the year" title.

Through The Make Believe Full-length, 1997
Obscure Master Plan Full-length, 1999
Stagnant Progression Full-length, 2003
Solving for X Full-length, 2012

Official Site

NEW FLESH COMING (ITALY)

This Italian act plays relaxed modern, industrial post-thrash (based on "Technoir") with an alternative flavour. This is jumpy stuff with very heavy groovy interferences at times which give the necessary edge to it. This is nothing exceptional, mostly hammering rhythms flowing all over accompanied by dual vocals very similar to the ones of Burton Bell (Fear Factory) of whose main band these guys are very obviously big fans.

Demo 2001 Demo, 2001
Promo 2k4 Demo, 2004
Technoir Demo, 2005

NEW MEXICAN ERECTION (USA)

The band name already suggests that these guys shouldn't be taken seriously and if you do that, you wouldn't be very disappointed: this is melodic modern post-thrash with a certain amount of groove reminding of Anthrax of the 90's, or later period Machine Head, with timid attempts at a more technical play. The pleasant surprise here are the vocals which are of the melodic, clean type sounding like a mix of Warrel Dane and John Bush; not very fitting to the music, but bringing a breath of fresh air and a touch of originality.

Groovecore EP EP, 1999
Innuendo Full-length, 2003
Co-Dependent Full-length, 2005

Official Site

NEW TESTAMENT (RUSSIA)

Many musicians have been a part of this band's line-up throughout the years: members of Aria, Valkyria, Korrozia Metalla, Hellraiser, Black Coffee, Kruiz- the whole Russian metal spectre. Based on "Apocalypse", these guys play quite good doom metal ala Bolt Thrower (the closing riffs from "Legions of Death" are directly taken from Bolt Thrower's "This Time It's War" from "The IVth Crusade"), and Black Sabbath and Saint Vitus (most of the songs) mixed with a certain doze of thrash. At times the sound is pure doom, but at others it speeds up quite a bit, like on the first and last tracks, coming up with sharp, headbanging riffs. The doom metal presented here is also of the faster mid-tempo variety with the occasional slower sleepy parts.

Halleluyah Full-length, 1991
Exorsist Full-length, 1992
Apocalypse Full-length, 1994

Official Site

NEWBREED (POLAND)

Based on "Child of the Sun": these guys pull out good progressive post-thrash with a modern edge, quite complex, with long 8-9min compositions sounding like a cross between Opeth and Spastik Inc. Almost every song starts with an aggressive thrashy riff, but later develops into a multi-layered, elaborate affair, with many different moods changing, numerous acoustic, dream-like sections, and more. The singer is a pullback, with his very melodic, pop-ish voice, recalling Porcupine Tree. Despite the promising beginning, the tracks might get on the nerves on the regular thrash metal fan, because of their non-conventional, sprawling nature, but fans of Opeth and the long, progressive compositions will be delighted.
The self-titled effort doesn't betray the band's eclectic style, which here is a bit more straight-forward with sterile cold riffage which jumps in a samey way throughout the songs, which are a bit clumsy, slow-ish with dreamy sequences surrounded by dispassionate abstract landscapes. Not bad, but there's very little here to be labelled as thrash anymore...

The NeW Way of Human Existence EP, 2002
Lost EP, 2003
If I Were the Rain Full-length, 2005
Child Of The Sun Full-length, 2007
NewBreed Full-length, 2011

Official Site

NEWS CORPSE (UK)

Intense modern thrash/death which bows to acts like Corporation 187 and Maze of Torment without any aspirations towards originality. The melodic acrobatics on "The Audacity Of Hate" are really impressive, but elsewhere such musical prowess isn't displayed if we exclude the few technical licks on the final "No Stone Unturned". The semi-death metal singer shouts with the utmost passion although his rendings are generally intelligible. The guys also play with another modern thrash/death metal hybrid: Vae Solis.

Breaking News EP, 2015

Official Site

NEWSTED (USA)

After the several attempts to re-enter the thrash/post-thrash metal arena, Jason Newsted finally appears with a project under his own name. So will he be able to oevrshadow the more recent Metallica works? Well, by no means this could happen since the style presented is not too far form the one already displayed on the efforts of Sexoturica and IR8 so expect not very exciting bland modern post-thrash with groove, blues and even country present. This is not really worth checking out unless you're a die-hard fan of the once legendary bassist who here just plainly follows the uneventful music without much inspiration.
"Heavy Metal Music": apparently apart from the promising titles Newsted's efforts are not going to warm the hearts of the fanbase with anything else. The music here is an exact continuation of the one already heard on the EP with 2 of the songs from it present here as well. The dynamics is a bit bigger, perhaps, with tracks like "Soldierhead" semi-headbanging; but don't expect this to happen a lot since the focus later on is on heavy doomy riffs the ballad taking over completely near the end, with blues sneaking in to make this effort a very unlikely choice for the thrash metal fan.

Metal EP, 2013
Heavy Metal Music Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NEXT (MEXICO)

"...Y Los Restos" is melodic power/thrash of the classic school, energetic and all, but lacking an edge. "Invasion Nuclear" is a commendable debut, with a more aggressive approach and faster speed/thrash-based songs. The guitars are quite sharp, although the sound quality is a bit muddy, and the vocals are quite unpleasant hardcore-ish mid-ranged ones, very close to Wattie (The Exploited). "Pelea O Muere" is still quite thrashy, and most of the time sounds way more aggressive than the debut ("Epidemia Fatal IV", "Pelea O Muere", and the excellent brutal closer "2.32"). This could be the band's best release, featuring a cool headbanging material all the way.
"MCMXCVI" sounds a lot more 90's, having acquired the groovy spirit of the time, but is not completely lacking energy: the short, but melodic "Slam", the nice intense "Desorden", parts of "Rabia". "Dias Obscuros" is a cool heavy, pounding thrasher, and "Ya No Quiero Seguir" is a very good melodic balladic instrumental, but the rest is more ordinary modern post-thrash without any highlights.

Invasion Nuclear Full-length, 1988
El Juicio / Silencio Nocturno Full-length, 1989
Pelea O Muere Full-length, 1992
...Y Los Restos Full-length, 1993
MCMXCVI Full-length, 1997
Next Full-length, 2004

My Space

NEXXT (ITALY)

Based on the full-length, these folks pull out an intriguing dynamic, energetic form of the good old post-thrash. THis doesn't mean that groove hasn't fully epitomized, but even those passages have a curious brisk flavour which grows into something more stylish on the atmospheric "Cries in the Dust", and into something formidably speedy on the roller-coaster "Bring the Bones Back Home". "Uqbar" is a nice progressive shredder making this album even less ordinary, not to mention the volcanic proto-doomster "Greed for Power" and the surreal technical jumper "Sweet Eternal Pain". The closer "Greetings from Hell" is an entertaining ballad with fine melodic leads and great heavy-hitting sections slightly ruined by the expressive semi-shouty hardcore vocals which elsewhere are a cool addition to the not very predictable, interesting musical approach.

Never Ending Xtreme Thrash EP, 2001
Apparent Control EP, 2003
Strength of the Rooted One EP, 2006
Addicted to Sin Full-length, 2007
Arise or Die EP, 2015

Official Site

NG (GERMANY)

Based on the full-length, this is a black/thrash horde who pull out vicious wild music the black metal heart of the performers more evident reflected in the super-speedy cuts most of them graced by sweeping hyper-blasts; which shouldn't be a surprise since the musicians all come from a black metal background: Mystic Circle, Zorn, Isegrim, etc. The thrash metal fan will savour the shorter and more technical moments ("Shimpu Tokkotai") which aren't so many, and perhaps the virtuous closer "War, Butcher and Death" which is a quite cool brutal technical death metal piece.

Nerve Gas EP, 2010
Bismarck Full-length, 2013

My Space

NIFELHEIM (SWEDEN)

Based on "Envoy of Lucifer", this band come up with fast and energetic black/thrash of the old school, not too far from the works of the Japanese representatives of the genre: Sabbat, Abigail, Barbatos. Naturally, the music goes into hyper-blast black metal extremes at times, but there's enough thrash here to satisfy fans of the genre.

The self-titled debut is unholy black/thrash metal, a pretty vicious affair already sharing the extreme aesthetics of the 2nd wave of black metal spicing it with brisk thrashy riffs frequently interrupted with brutal blasting outrage. The thrash metal fans will be mildly entertained on the early Sodom-esque piece "Possessed by Evil" and the "Pleasure to Kill" leftover "Sodomizer", but the majority of the songs will find their bigger acceptance among the black metal brotherhood.

Nifelheim Full-length, 1995
Devil's Force Full-length, 1998
Servants Of Darkness Full-length, 2000
Unholy Death EP, 2000
Envoy of Lucifer Full-length, 2007

Official Site

NIGEL FOXXE'S INC (GREECE)

This is actually the band Thanatos Inc. founded by the former Flames guitar player Nigel Foxxe. The band had to change their name after negative reactions on the side of the Dutch Thanatos who had chosen this name first. The music is less thrashy than the one heard on Thanatos Inc.'s only album. There are classic heavy metal songs, and you might find yourself wondering whether their place is on a thrash metal album. However, when the guys thrash, they could rank with the best ("Warning Signs"). On the second half of the album the songs become longer, start dragging and sound much less interesting. Apparently the name change had taken some of the good sides of the band's music.

War of the Godz Full-length, 1988

NIGHT FALLS LAST (AUSTRIA)

Bsed on the full-length, this act pull out modern Swedish-esque thrash/death which has all the staple tools of the trade to qualify as at least semi-interestng effort without doing anything wrong even producing a cool diverse progressive opus ("Rise") at the end. The guys don't rely on speed a lot and manage to create a certain amount of atmosphere as well not far from the one witnessed on the early Dark Tranquillity works.

Decisions and Directions EP, 2010
Return of the Fallen EP, 2012
Deathwalker Full-length, 2014

Official Site

NIGHT IN GALES (GERMANY)

Based on "Five Scars", this act, who were previously known as Intestinal Ulcer when they played a doomy brand of classic death metal, pulls out competent modern Gothenburg thrash/death lashing out expectedly melodic energetic riffs in the tradition of Dark Tranquillity and At the Gates. "The Tides Of November" is a cool epic touch, a nod to Amon Amarth, but generally such stops on the way are not too many, the band marching on with the staple speedy guitar work and the flashy solos. The sparce clean vocal participation hints at prospective future metamorphosis maybe, as already felt on more laid-back tracks, like "Blackmouth Blues" (think later-period In Flames)... Some of the band members are also involved in the black/death metal act In Blackest Velvet.

Towards the Twilight Full-length, 1997
Thunderbeast Full-length, 1998
Nailwork Full-length, 2000
Necrodynamic Full-length, 2001
Ten Years Of Tragedy EP, 2005
Five Scars Full-length, 2011

Official Site

NIGHTBORN (SWEDEN)

This band is just one person, the name Arda K, who indulges in quite good modern progressive thrash which is sustained in a dominant fast-pace although there's a lot happening within the songs which are quite lengthy (6-8min), but the guys makes sure that every composition has a hefty speedy decoration. "Hemorrhage of the Soul" is a good reminder of early Destruction with its sharp spinning riffs, and "The Sorrow Room" is a stylish nod to more recent Paradox. "Bloodgrown Darkness" attempts some intriguing lightning-fast thrashing ala Expulsion, and "Visitation" is a superb complex riff-fest with a wide array of time and tempo shifts. Arda provides passable mid-ranged semi-clean timbre which hits the higher registers at times in a more shouty, hoarser fashion.

Skyless Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NIGHTBREED (GREECE)

These Greek heroes offer an excellent early Germanic speed/thrash worship and as such shred like demented in the best manner of Necronomicon, Kreator, Toxik Shock, and early Deathrow. There's a lot of speed to be savoured here and the guys know no mercy bringing the glorious 80's right at your doorstep with rigorous headbangers like "Epilepsy" and "Public Execution" the latter a rolling semi-technical delight ala Destruction. The whole album is sustained in a maddening brisk pace as a few more stylish compositions are also thrown in: "In the Mouth of Madness", the almost progressive speed/thrashing opus "Taste of Blood". Shorter, more immediate cuts are placed in the end to accentuate on this very cool effort's dynamic character the highly energetic musical delivery topped by shouty mean vocals ala Schmier and Freddy (Necronomicon). The band members are also active with other thrashy acts around: Released Anger, The Crucifier, etc.

Nightbreed Full-Length, 2015

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NIGHTCHAINS (LEBANON)

Thrash metal from Lebanon is not a very common phenomenon, but it should be paid attention having in mind the energetic inspired performance by these guys. Their only effort offers cool classic thrash mixed with American power metal in a way not far from Savage Grace and Liege Lord. The initial energy gets lost later on, unfortunately, reaching balladic dimensions near the end also expressed by the presence of one tender acoustic ballad ("(Can't Write a) Love Song"). The guitars have a slightly noisy sound, and the singer may annoy a bit with his raspy screamy delivery which could have benefitted from more time spent rehearsing in the studio.

Metal to the Bone Full-length, 2005

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NIGHTCRAWLER (SPAIN)

These Spaniards pull out capable power/speed/thrash metal with a classic "sting" alternating faster galloping riffs with slower sharp ones. The "duel" in the vocal department between the high melodic female and the deep growling male ones is quite cool, although from all the 8 tracks featured ony two are studio recordings, the others being live with worse production qualities which give the guitars a very buzzy sound. The end comes in the form of a faithful, but ruined by the bad sound, cover of Rage's "Set the World on Fire" from "Unity", and the medley between Kreator's "People of the Lie" and Carcass' "Heartwork", which is surprisingly good with a much better sound quality with more leanings towards the Kreator composition.

Burning Like Flesh On The Rotten Soil Demo, 2009

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NIGHTGLOW (ITALY)

This formation provide modern power/post-thrash which is on the playful merry-go-round side with some appropriate heavy metal additions (the happy-go-lucky "Time Lord"). Consequently it will appeal to a wider fanbase who will enjoy the crisp melodic guitars and the attached mid-ranged clean vocals. The aggro-lovers will jump sky-high on the short aggressive groover "Don't Cry", and the more hardened thrashers will have ther partial fun on the final "End Of Time" which is eventful progressive power/thrash in various tempos serving several intense passages among the more laid-back decisions one of which is a very cool balladic outro.
"Orpheus" is thrashier and a tad more dynamic (the exiting section of the closing title-track) although the power metal elements are still prevalent leading the show in an assured melodic, epic manner. The pace is mid for most of the time, and a few more modern groovy touches ("Fuck You", "Liar") have been introduced. The singer is the star here with his attached dramatic performance although he doesn't break any records in the high-pitched department.

We Rise Full-Length, 2013
Orpheus Full-length, 2014

Official Site

NIGHTLORD (UK)

Based on the full-length, these guys pull out fairly cool classic speed/thrash ruined to an extent by the rough semi-death metal vocals. The music delivers with fast crisp rhythms which, albeit not very elaborate, grow into longer eventful compositions ("Vote for Me") where quite a bit of intense headbanging thrash can be heard. "Power Of Hate" is a great number mixing the best from Angel Dust and Paradox, a vigorous speed/thrasher sustained in various tempos. "Holy Inquisition" shows the more progressive side of the band for a while, but the guys are intent on playing fast'n tight, and soon the "carnage" starts over again. This act were pretty much in a niche of their own in the UK back in the day since very few were those practicing this brand of Germanic speed/thrash except for several moments from the Hydra Vein works. It would be interesting to check whether they have managed to translate this amount of energy into the 90's with the EP...
"Reborn in Darkness": the band come back "reborn in darkness", and this effort sees them riding the wave once again blending power, speed and thrash on almost every number. At the beginning the band mosh with more heaviness and without too many fast-paced moments ("Omens in Entrails" can even pass for a quasi-doomster), but arrives "Butcher's Bill", and the guys start thrashing with passion. "Ghosts from the Machines" is an elaborate composition with less aggressive riffs partly influencing the next "Black, Red and Green" which is just a relaxed heavy metal anthem. "Last Rise of Our Dying Sun" is a diverse instrumental with an abundant use of the leads, and the band take it relatively easy till the end with a more restrained approach the power/speed metal movement paid tribute with a string of hymns which mellower character is "stained" by the gruff semi-death metal vocals.

Approaching Thunder Full-Length, 1990
Cult of the Moon EP, 1993
Reborn in Darkness Full-Length, 2016

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NIGHTMARE (BRAZIL)

Based on the debut demo, these folks specialize in purely amateurish bashing thrash/proto-death which is performed at a very pristine level, both music and vocal-wise, the guys just moshing with vigour relying too much on the blast-beats to make this a pleasant listen at this early stage, never changing their boring, one-dimensional approach.

Raising from Holocaust Demo, 1987
Rehearsal Demo, 1987

NIGHTMARE (BULGARIA)

On their only album these obscure Bulgarians pull out capable, technically-decorated thrash/death metal along the lines of No Return's "Contamination Rises". The band never adhere to pure blasting sections like the French, and on their most inspired they aren't too far even from Pestilence's "Testimony of the Ancients", or Death's "Human", similarities also called by the singer's early Chuck Schuldiner (R.I.P.)-like delivery. The guitar work is really good, and again recalls the mighty Chuck on quite a few times. The album is split by the cool speedy cover version of the Venom immortal hit "Black Metal", which is slightly off-context, but stirs up the mood. Afterwards the band afford some loose pieces, like the short doomy "Go Away", the atmospheric ambient, and scarily non-metal "Dreams", but also one straight thrash headbanger ("Holocaust"). The closer "Return of The Death" safely brings back the sound to the previous technical thrash/death formula proving once again the rule that there are no odd/casual acts coming out of Bulgaria.

Mental Derangement Full-Length, 1994

NIGHTMARE (JAPAN)

Fast aggressive thrashcore; don't look any further than early Prong and Beyond Possession... Short 1.5-min tracks, often graced by melodic punk passages.
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Nightmare EP, 1988

NIGHTMARE (POLAND)

Based on "Cryptic Songs", this band offers cool, still more classic-sounding, thrash metal with a dark gothic edge, also coming from the raw death metal vocals. The music is mostly in mid-tempo with slower atmospheric breaks, where the riffs start biting more. The style bears resemblances to late 80's Slayer, but here the guitar work is heavier. "Fallen Love" is a nice more complex number, also graced by operatic, cleaner vocals. "Looking for Paradise" is an effective mix of faster guitars and doom-laden parts, followed by the most aggressive thrasher here "Picture of Evil". Get ready for more intense thrashing on "The Lost", and on the short furious closer "The Awakening" which will do exactly what the title promises.

Cryptic Songs Full-length, 1993
Cold Full-length, 1995

NIGHTMARE (USA)

A rough intense demo of power/speed/thrash the opening title-track storming through the speakers with violent rolling riffs setting the tone for what follows which turns to more aggressive thrash on "Witches' Sabbath", and to evil speedy gallopisms on the final "Dangerous Forces". The singer shouts and even screams, also semi-whispering, with passion leaving a rather positive impression which can't be said about the production: the sound quality is pretty muddy taking away some of the leads' melodic flair.

Land of the Dead Demo, 1986

NIGHTMARES END (USA)

Quite good progressive power/thrash metal which comes as a mix of Hexenhaus' "Dejavoodoo" (in the lead department mostly) and Sanctuary's "Into the Mirror Black"; this is heavy dark music with excellent dramatic vocals ala Warrel Dane. So don't expect a lot of headbanging tracks, but mostly heavy doomy riffs with very appropriately inserted balladic sections. The more immediate and more simplistic material in the beginning is replaced in the 2nd half by longer more complex compositions which still preserve the speed, and actually sound more aggressive: the intense galloping epic anthem "Blackend Mystery". Still, sinister creepy riffage remains the dominant part ("Hired Assassin"), although the overlong not very eventful semi-ballad "Eye-For-An-Eye, Tooth-For-A-Tooth" could have been shortened a bit near the end despite the coming of the much faster thrashing closer "Inhumanity Faced" which springs up out of the blue to break the gloom with raging blasting guitars. This nice album reminds of Sanctuary even better than the early Nevermore material and could even be regarded as that band's "missing link" in their discography.

Blackend Mystery Full-length, 2000

Official Site

NIGHTSHADERS (MALAYSIA)

A modern cross between thrash and Swedish death metal with more atmospheric gothic-tinged passages.

Rougayah'c6s Revenge Demo, 2007

My Space

NIGHTSHOCK (ITALY)

A rough Italian trio who follow on the steps of early Venom and their compatriots Bulldozer with a more melodic vibe which makes speed metal winners like "Faith and Dishonor" a real delight to listen to. The approach comes crust-decorated as well which becomes more apparent on the slower material ("Cemeterial City") and on the more hardcore-based bashers ("Funeral Chain"). The singer is a semi-shouty deathster who carries a melody in a way no worse than Mathias Lodmalm (Cemetary).

Nightshock Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NIHILDUM (ITALY)

This new trio indulge in dark moody thrash which is spiced with doom and even a bit of death metal. The guys thrash with passion (the title-track, "Schiavi") with a hardcore intensity which is present on at least half the tracks the other half being on the slower, doomier side the balance well achieved with the more energetic moments dominating the landscape led by the expressive shouty death metal vocals.

Verso Il Nulla Creatore Full-Length, 2012

Official Site

NIHILIST (MACEDONIA)

Modern thrash metal mixed with hardcore, reminding of Pro-Pain quite a bit. The guys vary things by adding heavy groovy tracks to the overall energetic tempo. More light-hearted, rock-ish songs are also included: "Underground Of The Underground", "Real Game", but then comes the most brutal part of the album: the death metal-tinged "Spanish Inquisition For The TV Soap Production". The rest bears no surprises being a mixture of the two aforementioned styles.

Another Dispersion of Hate Full-length, 2005

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NIHILIST (USA, Atlanta)

Based on the 1990 demo, these guys present a different style on each of the three tracks: "Terminus" is good Bay Area thrash in the vein of Forbidden and Vio-lence; "Shallow Graves" increases the aggression going towards Slayer with a cool slower doomy break in the middle; "Grunge" is a very heavy smashing piece which precedes the aggro-thrash of 90's heroes like Pantera and Machine Head, but having nothing from the grunge movement.
The "Machine I" demo sees the band still "flirting" with the classic sound producing seismic heavy music ala late-80's Slayer spiced with the odd more technical Bay-Area hook ("Wall Of Hate"). "Grunge" is here again without any changes, ably assisted by the energetic moshing closer "Subliminal Crime".

Demo Demo, 1989
Nihilist Demo, 1989
Demo Demo, 1990
Machine I Demo, 1992

NIHILIST (USA, California)

Based on the EP, this band mix in a not very convincing way Bay Area thrash with Slayer. The problem here is that the music sounds uninspired at times, and there isn't much variety, even in the almost 10-min long "Chaos Season" which moves along the lines of late 80's Metallica, but the riffs are repetitive and boring, and fortunately near the end the guys throw more vibrant Slayer-like riffs to improve things a bit. "The Ballad" is, of course, a ballad which is too far from the Testament standards that it tries to follow. "The Cleansing" is the only worthy number here, a good headbanger, again, along the lines of Slayer's "Reign in Blood".

"Call Down The Thunder", unfortunately, is even more toothless, abandoning the Slayer-esque aggression which used to pop up here and there on the EP; all songs are in the same vein: mid-tempo melodic power/thrashers recalling Iced Earth. The only track which packs a punch is "Nihilist Kills", as the song-title is more of a wish for the future works of the band, rather than a reality. The Judas Priest's cover version of "Freewheel Burning" sounds even softer than the original, and has nothing to do with thrash metal. Apparently the guys do not consider themselves a full-blooded thrash metal act, and if you get used to their not very aggressive style, you might find something to like here.

"Blood Portraits" finally hits the mark and is the guys' finest hour so far. It's based around classic speed/thrash (more speed than thrash) metal ala Destructor, the Germans Vectom and Exciter, so expect direct simplistic tracks with melodic hooks aplenty and fast invigorating rhythms. The album is quite consistent speed-wise, even longer, more serious songs like "House of the Dead" keep a dynamic pace throughout, slowing down for the occasional break. Pure speed metal releases are a rare breed nowadays, and those of you who weren't very happy with the last Exciter output, will definitely lift up their mood with this one.

Guilty of Kicking Ass EP, 2001
Kill Or Be Killed Full-length, 2002
Call Down The Thunder Full-length, 2006
Blood Portraits Full-Length, 2009

Official Site

NIHILIST WORKSHOP (USA)

Modern groovy post-thrash with female vocals which speeds up here and there acquiring 90's Chastain-like tendencies; the girl does a fairly good job behind mike spicing her gruff delivery ala more intelligible Dawn Crosby (R.I.P.) with fine melodic clean lines. Some attempts at mixing groove with crossover sound misplaced ("Nothing"); the same, however, can't be said about the stoner/doomy delight with a faster twist "Direct Retribution", or the dark hypnotic "Revenge", in the best tradition of early Fear of God with a groovy shade.

Demo Demo, 2004

My Space

NIHILOSAUR (POLAND)

Industrialized progressive thrash in the vein of mid-90's Voivod, Mastodon and the Canadians Soulstorm, but more complex with low death metal growls, quite good with interesting decisions, hypnotic dissonant guitars in the mid-range with frequently changing moods and riffs. This is a creepy menacing musical experience, large on atmosphere, certainly not a headbanger's paradise. The fact that at times the album loses completely the dynamics settling for slow-ish almost doomy riffage ("Broken Against False Knowledge"; "Three Hundred And Sixty Thousand", which will also remind you of Godflesh with its monotonous, but effective main theme) is hardly a complaint since the guitars retain both the technical/progressive edge and the bite. The lack of variety at the end is compensated by beautifully surreal abstract sections on "A Sort Of Emotional Anaemia" and the closer with the very silly title "Blood Sweetened With Shit" which also adds lyrical melodic guitar hooks the latter nicely contrasting with the otherwise bleak, but captivating, musical landscape.

The End is Within Sight Full-length, 2007

Official Site

NIMBLE SLUSH (USA)

This is interesting technical, even progressive-sounding, thrash, still pretty classic for the time of release, relying mostly on mid-pace and clever arrangements the latter ably supported by the very good bass work. The riffs are a bit thin and buzzy which is a detriment to both the leads and the technical sections, and the singer is a forceful death metal growler slightly recalling Martin Van Drunen (Pestilence, among other acts).

Demo Demo, 1992

NIMROD (CHILE)

Although this band have often been classified as a death metal act, at least on their "Time of Changes" demo there is no big reason for that; the guys play well constructed up-tempo thrash metal reminiscent of Possessed, Slayer and Devastation, introducing slower moments in the Celtic Frost tradition, and even riffs ala Destruction come up from time to time (the instrumental "The Message" is a very good example for that).

"Return to Babylon" would be quite a surprise to the demo fans since it offers an entirely different approach deeply immersed in the classic power/thrash metal idea, maybe to better suit the new singer Eric "La Bestia" Morales, also known from the epic doom metallers Dantesco whose passionate clean voice seamlessly blends with the fast vigorous music. The guys press the pedal on speed from the beginning, with the epic speed/thrashers "Night of the Witches" and "I Am", before the peaceful balladic instrumental title-track calms things down. "Broken Wings" pounds in a heavy semi-technical manner, but the guys feel restless, and start thrashing again in the 2nd half. "Ready to Burn" is a first-rate doomy thrasher with a shade of Memento Mori and Sanctuary's "Into the Mirror Black"; please be prepared for the brutal proto-death metal break in the middle and the brilliant Oriental tunes right after. Heavy pounding riffs aplenty await you on the formidable "Death Behind" which flows into the semi-ballad "Betrayer of the Soul" which also offers great leads and a good chorus. It was high "time for changes", i.e. more dynamics added, and "Time of Changes" comes right on time to satisfy the hunger for speed scoring high in the technical department as well. "Dark Land" adds more fuel into the fire being another speedy thrasher with a few slower twists. The closer "Nimrod" is more than a satisfying exit from this grand effort, finally recalling the brutality from the band's earlier output, being an aggressive thrash/proto-death shredder with an atmospheric doomy middle.
"God of War and Chaos" is another satisfying on all counts opus the band havign lost their skills despite the big hiatus, and "Revolution Evilution" starts the "slaughter" fast ripping rhythms, first-rate blitzkrieg thrash with cutiing slashing guiatrs. There's no letting up later with raging cuts like "Catastrophic Prophecies" and the title-track only bringing the sound to more extreme parametres. "Frontal Assault" is the seemingly speed metal-ish respite followed by the officiant pounding power/thrasher "They Shall Not Pass", a march-like piece which cancelled by the ultimate headbanger "Fukushima 666" and the excellent more technical shredder "At the Borders of the Mind", a hectic unpredictable composition with sudden speedy "excursions". "Metal Masters" wraps it on with a portion of hyper-active speed metallisms, more than a glorious epitaph to this very entertaining roller-coaster, one of the highlights from the South American scene in 2017.

Time of Changes Demo, 1988
Time Of Changes Re-Release Best of/Compilation, 2003
Demo Demo, 2007
Return to Babylon Full-length, 2008
God of War and Chaos Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NINE FATHOMS DEEP (USA)

Epic modern thrash/death with brutal death metal vocals which shout quite hysterically at times; the production is too noisy, and the guys don't make a very big effort to make this recording any more attractive. The other problem is that the songs develop in the same monotonous mid-pace from start to finish the only more vivid track being "Enceladus" where also much better female vocals and nice leads can be heard.

Welcome To The Show Full-Length, 2016

NINJA GANHDI (USA)

This is very diverse modern post-thrash which "flirts" with groove, alternative, funk, the ballad and everything in-between. The delivery by all means has its moments (the twisting, unpredictable "Green Devin"; the melodic deathy rager "Tortuga"), but the approach is generally mellow and may not appeal too much to the diehard thrash metal fanbase, includingn the many twists in the voocal performance as well these ranging from nice clean to hysterical shouty.

Wax Empire Full-Length, 2016

NINTH CIRCLE (NORWAY)

Based on the "Judecca" EP, these guys provide crunchy post-thrash which livens up here and there (the energetic headbanger "Judecca"), but otherwise this is heavy thunderous music topped by throaty shouty vocals which crushes in mid-tempo still serving one surprise at the end: the brutal death metal break on the closing "Rise Of The Fallen".

Shores of Acheron EP, 2010
Judecca EP, 2012

Official Site

NINTH CIRCLE (UK)

Based on the "Mckill" demo, these folks, or rather folk, the name John Edwards since he's the only known member of this formation, unleash mechanical modern post-thrash with a strong industrial flavour which on "Waster" comes with a nice progressive edge ala Treponem Pal. This is hypnotic, not very dynamic stuff with a thundering bass bottom and intense semi-shouty vocals.

Festina Lente Demo, 1996
December Demos Vol 1& 2 Demo, 1999
McKill Demo, 1999

NIRGHAL (COLOMBIA)

Based on the split, these Colombians offer aggressive black/thrash metal of the raw underground variety. The approach is pretty fast and relentless with frequent hyper-blasts, and the several more restrained epic elements ("Immortal War") are left unfinished, the guys concentrating on extreme merciless music topped by vicious crow-like vocals.

Evil Force Demo, 2007
From the Throne of the Abyss EP, 2008
Darkness and Terror Split, 2010

My Space

NIRNAETH (ITALY)

Based on "The Extinction Generation", this formation specialize in quite intriguing modern progressive power/thrash which starts with the misleading immediate crossover-prone opener "We Forget To Think". The next "Moby Dick" is already a much more ambitious 7.5-min progressiver, and "The Extinction Generation" tries to capture the jolly good spirit of 90's Megadeth toning it down to power metal proportions. "Blind Hate" is an atmospheric hard-hitter, but the rest of the album falls in the progressive power metal category "The Human Bankrupt" sticking out near the end with its formidable galloping riffs. The closing "The Root Of Evil" is a wonderful more surreal technicaller, but it starts this trend too late to impress the fans who will at least savour the good emotional clean vocals.

The Psychedheavyceltale in 8 Movements Full-length, 1997
The Return EP, 2009
The Extinction Generation Full-length, 2015

Official Site

NIT WIT (USA)

An updated version of the good old Bay-Area thrash, the updates in the form of heavy proto-groovy implements ala Flotsam & Jetsam's "Quatro". The music isn't completely stale, and more vivid riffs can be encountered around every corner including more elaborate progressive achievements ("Shadow Of Doubts"). The singer is a find with his warm attached clean voice who holds range and pathos without straining himself a lot in the high registers.

Dream Is Burning Demo, 1994

NITOKRIS (ITALY)

Based on "Bloodshed", this formation serve modern post-thrash which at times captures the intrigung quasi-progressiveness of Grip Inc., and generally atmosphere-wise the album leaves little to be desired. The thing is that the settled from the beginning creepy mid-pace never falters making more dynamic cuts like "Welcome to the End" more than welcome with their brisk riffage. "The Daylight" is an interesting semi-technicaller which dramatic accumulations later find fertile ground on the final "Nitokris", another imposing epicer with crushing, doomy easthetics. The singer is appropriate with his hoarse semi-clean baritone which he uses at times to shout, generally to a positive effect.

All You See Is Illusion Full-length, 2014
Holy Bible Full-length, 2014
Bloodshed Full-length, 2016

Official Site

NITROUS (ESTONIA)

This is a mix of heavy modern-sounding thrash metal and some "Reign In Blood"-like aggression; the approach is closer to the modern trends, albeit not missing too much in terms of speed and energy.

Dominant Force Full-length, 2006

My Space

Nme WITHIN (SWEDEN)

A very diverse album containing elements of thrash (of the more modern variety), traditional 80's metal and even hard rock numbers; the music packs a punch although this isn't very heavy stuff.

Son of a Gun EP, 1995
Science Krucifikkton Full-length, 1997

NO AMNESTY (SPAIN)

Based on the full-length, this outfit provide brisk energetic old school thrash which adheres to more brutal deathy outbursts at times, but generally surprises of the kind aren't too many if we also exclude the more technical pirouettes on "Among the Blind". "Evil Priest" introduces a couple of nice Iron Maiden-esque melodies, and "Snake Eyes" demonstrates a more engaging, progressive song-writing contrasting with the uplifting speed metal-ish spirit of the instrumental "Toxic World" which skips the intense shouty vocals.

A New Order for Attack EP, 2013
Psychopathy Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NO AVAIL (USA)

This is classic thrash with echoes of Anthrax and the Bay-Area with intense forceful semi-shouty vocals. Despite the muddy sound, the guys have their voice heard on impetuous shredders like "Helladdicted" and the nice galloping closer "Time Is For Dying", and generally they manage to keep the up-tempo the whole time.

S.P.A.M. Demo, 1991

Official Site

NO COMPROMISE (GERMANY)

An interesting take on the 90's groovy post-thrashy idea; the band play with a lot of jumpiness, but also with a good sense of speed as reflected in the cool energizer "Frustration" and the dramatic stomper "Endings". "Spit On Your Word" is another less predictable pounder semi-thrashing with a good The Black Album-esque vibe the impression a bit ruined by the very hoarse semi-death metal vocals.

Take It As An Insul EP, 2016

NO CONCESSION (SPAIN)

Based on the "De Homine" EP, this formation indulge in choppy modern thrash/death which comes with gruff death metal vocals. The music has a somewhat sterile, mechanical aura which still doesn't stand on the way of impetuous headbangers like "God of Flesh" and "Crimson Queen". "Goeteia" is the progresiive, more diverse deviation coming with a more accentuated death metal aura.

Path of the Bitter Stream EP, 2012
Fever Deliriums EP, 2013
De Homine EP, 2017

Official Site

NO DAWN (NORWAY)

Based on the full-length, these folks play a more atmospheric and a faster-paced version of the Swedish melo-death/thrash. Exceptions are certainly to be found, like the blasting madnesses "Exit Sanity" & "Inevitable Downfall" the latter being a hectic brutal semi-technicaller. "God Ov Torment" brings the winds of black metal even, and its rich atmospheric undercurrents are more than welcome despite the several blast-beating passages within that also appear on the more thrash-based "Hail the Burden" which is overshadowed by the excellent combination of technicality, orchestral arrangements, and suggestive Morbid Angel-esque dissonance on the closing "The Final Departure".

Drain to Revive EP, 2010
Dark Aura Full-length, 2013

Official Site

NO DIRECTION (USA)

Good classic thrash sounding like a mix between Exodus' "Bonded by Blood" and Slayer's "Hell Awaits"; the music is speedy except on "Brain Daze" which slows down a bit acquiring crossover qualities, but nicely speeds up near the end. "Blind Reproach" acquires funky, but also technical tendencies, and is quite an enjoyable piece.

Demo Demo, 1988

NO EULOGY (CANADA)

Hardcore-ish modern thrash with crusty references; the music isn't fast the whole time; on the contrary, the slower sections seem to work better recalling the Swiss legends Celtic Frost who are also a soundalike on some of the more speedy cuts as well. The guys specialize in longer compositions (5-7min) which don't provide anything too technical, just crusty guitars with a psychedelic vibe ala Thorns and Satyricon alternating with the staple fast riffs. There's a variety at play here despite the initial impression (mostly based on the opening string of tracks) that the band stick to the same formula over and over.

No Eulogy Full-Length, 2011

NO FRAUD (USA)

The band open this optimistic offering with an Alice Cooper cover version of "Elected", and later on they manage to sustain the merry mood with a string of short thrash/crossover cuts where the guys play fast with nods to both hardcore and punk. The singer plainly recites an a more dramatic manner, another reference to the glorious punk movement.

Elected EP, 1991

NO GUERRA

Modern thrash with metalcore influences; a very typical product of its time, quite energetic with heavy solid riffage ala Trivium often adhering to energetic speedy passages with a good headbanging potential. The end is a bit underwhelming being two short instrumentals with nice acoustic Oriental guitars.

"Choiols" is more simplistic with a strong presence of hardcore and intense groove which comes industrialized not far from mid-period Fear Factory. In the 2nd half the album accumulates some steam with faster tracks the guys thrashing with more passion recalling the more vivid debut in many ways. This is again decent modern thrash/post-thrash fun which would definitely grasp a wider audience in the days to come.

Anonikenk Full-Length, 2010
Choiols Full-Length, 2012

NO IDENTITY (HOLLAND)

Noisy, abrasive thrashcore with certain deathy overtones, but with "no identity" whatsoever; this is ultra-heavy stuff with angry death metal vocals and short, to-the-point tracks completely devoid of solos or any other unnecessary gimmicks.

Demo Demo, 1994

NO MADE SENSE (UK)

This trio pulls out industrialized groovy progressive post-thrash with long sprawling compositions which feature fast-paced passages and quite a few stylish guitar decisions (check the leads on "Entases Of Azure (Chapter II)", which also boasts a very cool speedy ending), but the soft, stretch-your-nerves moments are also here, stretching (and your nerves as well) into whole songs ("Milachis Depths"). The music has something in common with Neurosis and more recent Mastodon, but these guys have loads of patience going through a very long monotonous passage with no intentions to change it. The music is by no means without merits, but from a thrash-metal-point-of-view this is hardly the fan's paradise.

NoMadeSense EP, 2007
The Epillanic Choragi Full-length, 2009

Official Site

NO MAN'S THRONE (CANADA)

The debut: modern thrash with hardcore shades not far from Pro-Pain becoming more aggressive ("Impartial Devastation") on occasion. There's more dynamics displayed later like on the frolic roller-coaster "Limits Of Mercy" and the classic speed metal reminder "At The Heels Of Giants", not to forget the short Slayer-esque explosion at the end "The Kiln". The singer shouts in an attached manner not far from Gary Meskil (Pro-Pain again) himself.
"Kingdom of Hysteria" notches up the musicianship with more proficiently executed guitar work, and "Cloak and Dagger" is an impressive semi-technical headbanger ably assisted by the marginally more laid-back "Culture of Conditions". More moshing joy with the ripping rager "Icons of Extravagance" which brings back some of the hardcore-ish vigour of the debut, and the heavier stomper "Declaration" which keeps the album from turning into a less restrained bashing melee.

Revealed in Ruin Full-length, 2015
Kingdom of Hysteria Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NO MANS LEGION (UK)

This is laid-back stoner/doomy post-thrash which is suitably heavy, but the speed isn't very well covered the guys relying on thundering volcanic rhythms to deliver the goods despite the fact that their approach may tire the average thrash/post-thrash metal fan due to its repetitive nature. The vocals are shouty with a harsher death metal blend at times.

Stand Your Ground EP, 2012

Official Site

NO MERCY (COLOMBIA)

Based on the "Abominaciones" demo, this act specializes in cool energetic retro thrash which is obviously influenced by "Beneath the Remains", and contains the same vidorous attitude touching death metal slightly on the more intense moments. Their idols are honoured at the end with a good cover of "Crucifixion" from "Morbid Visions", ably supported by the forceful deathy vocals, but kind of marred by the fuzzy guitar sound which is particularly audible on that one.
The full-length is an intense listen the guys playing with the utmost aggression again "courting" death metal at times although the dominant approach is strictly for the old school speed/thrash metal lovers with fast'n tight sharp riffs which are seldom replaced by slower ones the "carnage" never stopping on this violent roller-coaster which may be boosted a bit from the production side: the guitars sound muffled at times, and the drums have a somewhat dull-ish, not very expressive sound.

Te Matare Demo, 2008
Abominaciones Demo, 2011
Enemigo De Tu Fe Full-Length, 2013

My Space

NO MERCY (USA)

This is a side project of two Suicidal Tendencies members (including the legendary Mike Muir). The sound is pretty much the same: thrash/speed/crossover; very good stuff if you enjoy crossover and the Suicidals (especially "Join the Army" and "How Will I Laugh..."). Some of the tracks are also included in the Suicidal Tendencies' Best of Compilation "Controlled by Hatred".

Widespread Bloodshed Love Runs Red Full-length, 1987

My Space

NO PROMISES (SLOVAKIA)

This is a diverse cocktail, serving classic headbanging thrash/death metal ("Torturer Dance"), gothic-tinged doomy death ("Pirouette Of Fallen Angel"), pounding, semi-technical dark thrash metal ("Photoalbum"), and more. This isn't a very focused effort, but the charm of it lies in the wide variety where everyone may find something to like.

Face Human Soul Full-Length, 1997

NO QUARTER GIVEN (UK)

The EP provides heavy groovy thrash with dynamic, even up-tempo at times riffs, cool guitar hooks (the acoustic exit from "Cleaver" is really nice) and very angry semi-death metal vocals.

The Embodiment Begins Full-length, 2008
Hold Your Serenity EP, 2009

My Space

NO RACE (BRAZIL)

The debut: this young Brazilian band plays good speed/thrash metal with nice guitar melodies, more classically-inclined. The style reminds of a more thrashy Exciter ("Changed By Force") at times, at times it is great Germanic thrash-worship ("Worthiness"), at others carries slight 90's power/speed metal atmosphere ("Hate and Fear"), or is openly aggressive (the excellent opener "Tears of Nature"). The leads are particularly impressive, being very fast and melodic. The music is speedy and energetic all the time with very good snarly vocals ala Rob Urinari (Sacrifice), or Schmier.
"Your Life's You": the Brazilian trio continue to unleash intense retro thrash which truly captures the imagination with the bursting opener "Despair of War", and later come tasty cuts like the melodic "Human Trash" and the jumpy semi-technicaller "Your Fear". "Heavy Rock Way" is the mild heavy/power metal deviation in the middle after which the guys start thrashing with more might on the remaining three pieces among which the closing "Under 18" is another cool, more technical offering. The vocals this time are gruffer, more shouty with a slight death metal flavour, and are desirably on the higher-pitched side.

Tears of Nature Full-Length, 2008
Your Life's You Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NO REMORSE (AUSTRALIA)

First-class speed/thrash metal recalling Iron Angel, Toxic's "World Circus" (but without the technical leanings) and Agent Steel; fast, sometimes quite aggressive music which will keep you headbanging for days; this is by far one of the best kept secrets of the Australian metal scene, highly recommended.

Demo Demo, 1988

NO REMORSE (BRAZIL)

The debut: This is another addition to the burgeoning thrash metal scene in South America, an act who specialize in direct old school thrash with an added doze of seriousness on the longer and slower "Single Bullet" in the middle, and the hypnotic pounder at the end "Souls of Hypocrisy" which crushes forward in an imposing Communic-like fashion. The singer isn't bad with his attached semi-clean mid-ranged voice his efforts aptly matched by the lead guitar player whose frequent short screamy inclusions fit into the overall capably done picture.
The self-titled come swith a more carefree flair now thrash/crossover given more nods the band haviigna lot of fun on optimistic speedsters like "Trap House" and heavier, more serious cuts like "A Flash of Thrash". "Killing Ground" is a soft heavy metal anthem, but the band revert quickly with the hardcore-ish mosher "L.T.F." and the varied speed/thrasher "Dawn of the Final Day". The final "The Ripper" is a longer composition with various tempos "chasing" each other to an attractive, power/thrashy effect.

DemoHATE Full-Length, 2013
No Remorse Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

NO REMORSE (SWEDEN)

This demo offers a mix of straight-forward mid-paced thrash, crossover, and even doomy elements; not bad, with the inclusion of one good ballad: "Call It Destiny". The band later moved into a doom/death metal territory and respectively changed their name, to Temperance.

Wake Up or Die! Demo, 1990

NO RETURN (FRANCE)

One of the most resilient French metal bands, No Return brought the Bay Area thrash to France with their excellent debut of sophisticated semi-technical patterns which may have been quite surprising to those who had managed at those times to get a hold of their debut demo from 1987 released under the name Evil Power and containing some of the most brutal sounds to come out of France during this period. They could have been perfectly well-off continuing in the same vein, but the trends were going towards death metal and "Contamination Rises" was the answer to them; a great thrash/death metal hybrid calling to mind Sepultura's "Beneath The Remains" and Pestilence's "Testimony Of The Ancients" (in the more technical sections). Having proved themselves as equally capable to handle more than one thrash metal sub-genre, the guys were quick/slow to partially disappoint with "Seasons Of Soul" four years later, a not very convincing blend of modern post-thrash and the band's staple hard-hitting retro death/thrashisms served with more pronounced, angrier vocals.

Six years later No Return were back in the game with another thrash/death metal mixture, this time with a modern production and a certain doze of modern elements; a big improvement compared to the last release. "Machinery" went back even further introducing some Bay Area thrash not heard since the band's debut, which mixed with the more aggressive death metal material, worked well. Their last self-titled debut is much less interesting offering pretty average modern thrash/death metal.

The guys apparently entertain themselves alternating strong with weak material since after the listless previous self-titled effort they come up with first-rate classic thrash, again with a death-y edge which pulls out all the stops on quite a few times. "Manipulated Mind" is the obligatory strong opener, a really fine blend of technical and melodic riffage, decorated by great melodic leads. "Puzzle of Life" is old school thrash at its absolute best; could have been left out from the debut? (kidding, of course!). "Rising" misleads with its blasting beginning, as later on it carries the thrash metal flag sky-high, accompanied by a mighty technical play and great leads again. The technical performance stays around for "Take Me Beyond": technical death/thrash of the highest quality, last heard on the last Death album. "New Items" is less than 3-min of classic thrash brilliance after which the technical guitars return (who says that there is "no return"?!) for "Blackness" which is more aggressive clinging towards the death metal side again recalling Death. "Carnal Violence" beats almost everything with its lashing fast-paced precise technical riffage, and the magnificent more quiet middle progressively-laced break. "The Right Course" combines straight headbanging delivery with twisted technical play, accompanied by excellent leads for the umpteenth time (the lead guitarist is arguably the best performer here). "Out of Control" is exemplary technical thrash/death which will make you listen to it many times in a row: this is an overwhelming song, a stunning combination of energetic speedy guitars and breath-taking atmospheric calmer sections plus the compulsory very technical riffage and, of course, the expert lead guitar work. Four months before the end of the year, it looks like 2008 has found its champions; this masterpiece completely erases any bad impressions made by any of the band's last offerings, and puts them on the very top of the French metal scene where it would be really hard for anyone to dethrone them.

"Inner Madness": No Return have experienced quite a few ups and downs throughout their career, but kudos should be given to them for not stopping being a regular presence on the scene ever since their inception. After the excellent "Manipulated Mind" the fans should prepare for the next unmitigated flop, but apart from the unexpected inclusion of clean vocals here and there, the music remains on an admirably high level being intense modern thrash not far from its predecessor, maybe not as technically-inclined this time although the more twisted material ("Near Death Experience"; the progressively-tinged "Morgane's Song") will make you scratch your head in no time with echoes of Death and Sceptic immediately springing up. As a whole the guys rip and lash on a high note the whole time emitting some effective headbanging pieces: "Inner Madness", the galloping dramatizer "The Dead Inside". The closing "Death Scars" is an exemplary tribute to Death finishing this album in the best possible manner once again with fast smashing riffs and a few puzzling sections. This is not only not a flop, but can be ranked almost as high as the band's first two efforts. This time the band did mislead with a second consecutive strong offering: they have found the way to thrash with the best out there, and they aren't going to miss the opportunity to reach as far as possible.
"Fearless Walk to Rise" sounds like a polished melo-thrash/death offering the band now having fully epitomized the Gothenburg canons to the point that this new opus sounds too familiar to strike a cord. The technical flourishes ("Fearless") from the previous two efforts are here to an extent, but they don't sound too exciting simply because the background is too pedestrian to give them the requisite support. It's all professionally and beautifully executed, but consequently isn't far from the cheesy traps which in this case are just around the corner waiting to take their toll on the next chapter from the guys' career. The band have managed to "return" from the fields of mediocrity and blandness on previous occasions; let's hope they can do it again...
"The Curse Within" is another run-of-the-mill melo-thrash/death saga flowing in the same painfully predictable feelgood manner from beginning to end the guys paying their belated tribute to the early efforts of In Flames and Dark Tranquillity, betraying their much more appealing, complex delivery from a few years back with only shades of it (the diverse shredder "Stare at My Reflection") present here and there.

Psychological Torment Full-length, 1990
Contamination Rises Full-length, 1991
Seasons Of Soul Full-length, 1995
Red Embers EP, 1997
Self Mutilation Full-length, 2001
Machinery Full-length, 2002
No Return Full-length, 2006
Manipulated Mind Full-Length, 2008
Inner Madness Full-length, 2012
Fearless Walk to Rise Full-Length, 2015
The Curse Within Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NO RULES (ITALY)

Based on the "Life's Hell Again" demo, this band play a contrasting mix between doom-laden ("Funeral/T.V. Brain Wash") and maddening fast ("Without Remorse") blitzkriegers. "Homicidal" is a nice lengthy speedster, and "Warriors of Metal" is a cool faithful cover of the American Warrant. Such epic moments are nowhere to be encountered later although the closing "The Dark Meander Of Death To Be Continued" is a really good atmospheric dark instrumental. The guys are active at present as Ordalia the style clinging more towards the classic heavy metal side with one album ("The Return of the King") released in 2000.

Blood and Fire Demo, 1988
Life's Hell Again Demo, 1989

NO SALVATION (USA)

This outfit crosses death and thrash metal on an intriguing, more technical base whic is both fast and dynamic ("Cruelty Will Prevail", the perennial headbbanger "Croweater") and dark and doomy ("Ca[size"; the dramatic stomper "Elephant Graveyard"). "War Forever" is a nice progressive death/thrasher with atmospheric deviations ala mid-period Death, and "True Destroyer" notches up the technicality to Atheist-lke heights with its serpentine, twisted arrangements. expect the unexpected at the end when the guys pull ous an awesome cover of Carcass' "This Mortal Coil", a truly glorious epitaph to this very strong recording which should pave the way for the band's future exploits.

Faith EP, 2013

NO SISSY STUFF (GERMANY)

With a name like this what could we possibly expect? Well, definitely not glam metal, like some of you might have thought initially. This is an all-female band (something not very common for the contemporary metal scene) who present us with a cool mix of thrash and traditional metal (so this is no "sissy stuff", folks!). Music-wise these girls remind me of another girl-band from the past: Ordained Fate, or the Americans Mid-Evil, but the Germans' music is heavier and more hard-hitting than both. It's been 6 years since the appearance of their only demo, and hopefully the girls are alive and well ready to follow on the steps of this capable 1st effort.

Last Poem Demo, 2001

Official Site

NO WARNING (BRAZIL)

This is obscure power/speed/thrash of the classic kind with tasteful leads and cool, albeit hardly very attached, clean vocals. The approach acquires at times a more optimistic, less pretentious character (the crossover/thrash joy "Wake Up To Reality"), but "Agreement Account" is a major headbanger compensating for the mellower nature of the semi-ballad "He's Alive". This is a cool diverse listen which should be given kudos for keeping the retro thrash idea alive through very difficult for the genre times.

Trail of Souls Demo, 1996

NO WARNING (USA)

There isn't enough information about this band, so if anyone can help... Style-wise this is a mix of hardcore and the aggressive thrash of Slayer and Dark Angel. The music is pretty fast with a few proto-death moments ("Life's a Bitch", "Use Your Mind", etc.).

Back from the Dead Full-Length, 198?

NO WAY (BRAZIL)

The debut: this is modern power/thrash which stomps its way with heavy volcanic riffs the tender moments (the ballad "We Will Take You Down") just a couple of songs away. On the better moments the album recalls Chastain also because of the mean-ish female vocals, and some heads can move around on "Collateral Murder". The problem is that the tracks are lengthy for the style, and their monotonous nature doesn't require it making the effort not very exciting in the long run despite the cool jumpy closer "Russian Roulette" which shreds with more intelligence bordering on the progressive.
"Challenge" sounds even more modern with boosted, also annoyingly noisy, production which surprisingly delivers on the more dynamic "Mists". Sadly such momet aren't many at all the band content enough with their bland, rock-ish nature which clearly shows on the balladic "I Don’t Care" this one ruined by the hysterical shouty vocals.

Rise of Insanity Full-Length, 2014
Challenge Full-Length, 2017

Official Site

NO WAY OUT (POLAND)

This outfit pull out a hesitation between the classic and the modern sound which by all means favours the dying retro canons, and a such deserves attention despite the soft nature of the riffs which at times are sincere power metal. "Wish And Roses" is a cool energetic lasher with unobtrusive progressive elements, and "Spadamy" at the end thrashes harder as well lifting the mood which should also be affected by the not bad mid-ranged semi-clean vocalist whose performance recalls James Hetfield.

No Way Out Full-Length, 1994

NOCODE (SPAIN)

Good groovy post-thrash with industrial overtones, surprisingly melodic touches, and cool more dynamic catchy tracks ("Americanizados", "Subasta de Dolor"); "Enjoy the Silence" is a very cool cover of Depeche Mode with heavy meaty guitars and very cool vocals, quite reminding of Dave Gahan; could be another singer, since the main vocals (which also spring up on this one near the end) are shouted, hardcore ones. The album closer "No Hay Salida" is a nice turn to a more aggressive play featuring great, totally unexpected leads which might make one regret why they were not even slightly hinted at earlier.

Reversible Full-Length, 2007

NOCTEM (SPAIN)

The debut: this is mostly black/death metal with hints at thrash on the slower material. The music is quite diverse, sometimes technical, sometimes melodic and catchy, sometimes hyper-blasting, sometimes orchestral and epic in the tradition of Bal-Sagoth, so there's a wide coverage of moods and tempos. The vocals are the typical raspy black metal ones interrupted by gruffer death metal ones at times. "Religious Plagues" is the only full-blooded thrasher with a progressive edge and nice melodic tunes.
"Haeresis" is another larger-than-life saga with all the aforementioned genres enmeshed into one eventful melee which hyper-blasting extremes would be hard to tolerate by the regular thrash metal fan. Consequently, thrash is very sparsely present the bombastic operatic, black metal arrangements taking more and more room with each passing song.

Divinity Full-length, 2009
Oblivion Full-length, 2011
Exilium Full-length, 2014
Haeresis Full-length, 2016

Official Site

NOCTUM (ECUADOR)

2 songs of vicious brutal black/thrash metal assisted by screechy semi-whispered black metal vocals; the music is close to Impaled Nazarene and early Burzum, maybe a tad more melodic. The guys go up the aggression scale with their other project: the grind/death metal outfit Morboviejo.

Muerte al Cordero EP, 2011

Official Site

NOCTURN (HOLLAND)

Another good act from the long list of more technical bands, which Holland has been churning out all these years; this band has a fairly interesting approach to thrash: their style is semi-technical with long engaging numbers infused with a considerable amount of doom, even doom/death at times, bringing the music close to bands like Asphyx or Beyond Belief (both acts are from Holland). Overall the sound is very heavy, doomy, but the thrashy breaks will guarantee to keep you awake although this might not be a very easy listen to some. Somewhere in the middle there is a riff stolen from Candlemass' "A Cry From The Crypt" (you find where).

Estranged Dimensions Full-length, 1991

NOCTURNAL (GERMANY)

Of the modern-day thrash metal bands this is the one who probably come closest to the vintage sound of early Destruction. The band shred like there's no tomorrow and leave very little room for solos (if any). The vocals are screechy, similar to Mille from Kreator, his earlier ones. This is a direct old school riff-fest with no compromises.
"Violent Revenge" is another slab of good all-out classic Germanic thrash, fast and relentless, this time not bearing too many resemblances to Destruction, offering more ordinary straight riffage, more in the speed/thrash metal vein ala Exumer, early Deathrow, and Toxic Shock. It also introduces a beautiful frontgirl with the even more "enchanting" stage name Tyrannizer, who occupies the space behind the mike for the production of some pretty notable unholy, devil-ish semi-shouts. "Death Is The Answer" is a nice speed/thrash fest, the best song here, but short direct bombs like "Disgracer" and "Beast of Hades" are not to be ignored, either. The melody has been increased a bit, but it only makes the album sound more appealing, especially the riff-work on the short speed metal killers near the end "Swarm Of Insects" and "Creation Of The Possessed". On the last song the guys take it easy settling down for a more thrash/crossover-based approach on the still raging "Hells Forces". Behind the mike we have a girl, going under the pseudonim Tyrannizer, who had sung before for the British death/black metal outfit Necrosadistic Goat Torture.
"Thrashraid Over Bitterfield" is 4 tracks of raging teutonic thrash metal with the opening "Death Is The Answer" later included on "Violent Revenge". This is fast uncompromising stuff; "Thrash Attack" at the end is not a Destruction cover, but is a vicious bashing thrasher with proto-death overtones ala Kreator's "Pleasure to Kill".

The "Undead and Dangerous" EP is just two songs: "Preaching Death", which is a sharp, energetic speed/thrasher, and the cool, very faithful cover of Bathory's "Sacrifice", with the vocals rasping in an unholy witch-like manner resuscitating the Quorthon (R.I.P.) delivery down to the -T-.
"Storming Evil": hundreds of bands base their delivery on Destruction, but these stalwarts seem to do it the best. Rather than emulating their compatriots blindly, these folks deviate from established formulas with several tricks along the way, and the relatively lengthy (5-7min) compositions give them plenty of opportunities to apply them successfully. Stil, the base remains "Infernal Overkill" the seamless blend of speed and thrash achieved immaculately (check out the "rising" sagas "Rising Demons" and "Tyrants of Damnation") everywhere the more brutal hooks left for the shorter material ("Preaching Death" which even introduces blast-beats at some point) the latter not very widely covered. The leads have become more proficient "duelling" with the incessant riff downpour which calms down on the epic Bathory-sque hymn "Taken By Fire". The exiting string of tracks simplifies the approach to an extent shooting fiery riffs to no end the closer "Ruthless Darkness" reaching the borders of death metal with its relentless super-fast delivery. This is a winner on all counts, and one may wish these guys to be a more frequent appearance on the scene.

Thrash with the devil EP, 2003
Arrival of the Carnivore Full-length, 2004
Temples Of Sin EP, 2005
Raging Rehearsal EP, 2007
Thrashraid Over Bitterfield EP, 2008
Violent Revenge Full-Length, 2009
Undead and Dangerous EP, 2011
Storming Evil Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NOCTURNAL BREED (NORWAY)

A black/thrash metal band; with members from a few black metal bands together one knows what to expect, but the music is actually very good 80's German thrash with Sodom and Kreator being the prime influences, with only the vocals belonging to the black metal field. There is not much variation between the albums, but for fans of retro thrash this band is highly recommended.
"Napalm Nights" can befall anyone, and not only those living in Vietnam... after a lengthy hiatus the guys are back and their repertoire now is wider ranging from dark intense black/thrashers ("The Devil Swept the Ruins") to frolic roller-coasters ala Motorhead ("Speedkrieg") where the singer impersonates Lemmy quite well. "Cursed Beyond Recognition" is an excellent atmospheric doomster ala Dimmu Borgir, close to being the highlight; and later on the diversity is quite big also featuring the over 12-min title-track which is an album in itself with the numerous nuances and moods. "Thrashiac" finally offers some intense hard-hitting thrash, but the approach gets elaborated once again on "Dawn Campaign... Flamethrower Ridge" and remains such till the end which comes in the form of the eventful black/power/thrash delight "Dragging the Priests", and the black metallic blaster "Krigshisser". This is truly larger than the universe offering which should be listened to several times before one starts to see all the threads within.

Raping Europe '97 EP, 1997
Aggressor Full-length, 1997
Triumph of the Blasphemer EP, 1998
No Retreat...No Surrender Full-length, 1998
The Tools Of The Trade Full-length, 1999
Warthog EP, 2004
Fields of Rot Full-length, 2007
Napalm Nights Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NOCTURNAL FEAR (USA, NJ)

Based on the "Spontaneous Combustion" demo, this band play raw simplistic thrash along the lines of early Venom and Celtic Frost, maybe more up-tempo. The singer tries to be the next Cronos, but his voice is rougher and more aggressive. "Freedom of Speech" abandons the heaviness and goes head-over-heels into Slayer territory.

Nocturnal Fear Demo, 1989
Spontaneous Combustion Demo, 1990

NOCTURNAL FEAR (USA, MI)

Based on "Sterilize and Exterminate": on one side we have modern thrash/death metal similar to The Haunted and The Crown; on the other one we have 80's, Sodom-like riffs. Not bad, especially with the addition of the cover version of Sodom's "Outbreak Of Evil" near the end.
"Code Of Violence" is furious, well executed thrash/death with a genuine semi-technical edge, and could well pass for the band's finest hour. The guys thrash with no mercy, playing intensely and fast most of the time, walking the fine line between the two styles, with preferences towards the thrash metal side which produces the best songs on the album: the speed/thrash fests "Rotting In Hell", "Rising Hatred" and "Flamethrower Holocaust", which could make any veteran from the 80's scene proud. "Skull Splitter" shows the band's more technical side, combined with some of the most furious and fast-paced riffs on the album. "Mind Control" begins with a curious saxophone intro ala Goran Bregovich (from the Emir Kusturica films), which flows into a heavy Slayer- esque riff, before it bursts into the next smashing speed killer, which in its turn is followed by the last two songs, the most aggressive and fastest ones. This is a nice companion to the other relentless assault to come out of the States recently (Merciless Death's "Realm Of Terror"), and a worthy addition to the overall marvellous thrash metal picture of 2008.

"Metal Of Honor" is quick to capitalize on its predecessor's success, and comes out less than a year later to offer another vicious slab of thrash/death metal which takes no prisoners, an attitude very well expressed on the damaging opener "Cast From Heaven". Things take a nice both more melodic and a more technical shape with the still quite speedy "Nuclear Deathstrike", a tendency continued on the next "Death Before Dishonor" which preserves everything from the previous numbers by adding a couple of blasting sections. "Soul Destroyer" is a destructive technical speedster, a superb raging piece, the highlight of the album, after which the sound becomes more aggressive with the more death metal-oriented "The Victor And The Vanquished" which still contains a few technical licks in the second half. The latter come aplenty on "The Enigma Of Steel", another seamless mixture of speed and technicality with great melodies and tempos. This great example is followed by the remaining 3 blitzkrieg pieces with the closing "Triumph Of Steel" (this is not a Manowar cover, folks) being a real "triumph" of speed inevitably including a few blasting hyper-fast passages to wrap it up. These guys are getting better and better; from the rough-around-the-edges debut they managed to evolve into one of the most potent forces on the US thrash metal circuit. If Kiss had to re-write their hit from the distant past now, then it should sound like this: "Detroit thrash city..." (Nocturnal Fear are from Detroit).
"Fog of War" is closer in spirit to the debut rather than to the more technical and tighter performance of the two preceding efforts, and is a cool slab of the good old school thrash/death metal played in an energetic fast tempo seldom crossing the border towards purer death metal ("Ressurected From The Past", which also goes away with all the technical pretensions), but the more carefree crossover spirit ("Kill the Enemy") is just around the corner.
"Excessive Cruelty": the guys aren't willing to lose the accumulated inertia and are back on the scene with another pretty cool offering. The mosh starts immediately with the intense semi-technical opener "Murder For Hire" which also comes with more atmospheric sections of melo-death origins. Dramatic, but also pretty fast, death/thrash is introduced on the title-track, but "I Am War" is a return to the clearer thrashy patterns with great technical hooks and slower, stomping riffs. "Absolute Annihilation" and "Rolling Thunder" are devastating thrash/deathsters spiced with furious blasts, before another slower, more technical number arrives: "World War Three", which is also filled with haunting orchestral tunes in the best tradition of Nocturnus, and some addictve lead melodies near the end. "Frozen In Stone" is energizing thrash/death of the more direct type, and the final "excess" "Human Shield" is a superb blend of aggression and technicality, by not forgetting the atmospheric keyboards, to put a well-deserving end to this entertaining chapter from the band's history which at this point seem to be at the top of their game without falling into any tiring, self-repeating patterns.

Sterilize and Exterminate Full-length, 2002
Fog of War Full-length, 2005
Code Of Violence Full-length, 2008
Metal Of Honor Full-length, 2009
Excessive Cruelty Full-Length, 2011

Official Site

NOCTURNAL GRAVES (AUSTRALIA)

This band is a collaboration between members of one of the major Australian metal acts of recent years Destroyer 666 and the Americans Toxic Holocaust (actually this is only one man: one of the most prominent underground metal heroes of recent years Joel Grind). Based on the "Deathstorm" demo: a 3-song demo of brutal black/thrash/death metal with shades of grindcore even ("Deathstorm"); there is little more than violent bashing here which stops on the last song for a while: "Face The Dawn" which begins with calmer, more interesting guitar work, but soon degenerates into the previous aggressive, one-dimensional delivery.

The full-length carries on in the same merciless relentless vein already heard on the demos. The musicianship, however, is better, and some of the leads are quite cool. Thrash metal takes a larger portion, and more than half the tracks are nice headbanging thrashers, even recalling Destruction at times ("Skullthrone"). Some tracks are unnecessarily brutal and violent ("Whore Of Sodom", "Satan's Cross"), and partially ruin the brisk thrashy atmosphere created by the rest.

"...from the Bloodline of Cain" is a cool continuation of the saga seeing the guys thrashing with passion becoming quite brutal ("Slave Annihilation") on occasion bringing the "winds" of black and death metal in no time. A more epic flavour settles in the middle: "The Conqueror's Flame", but primal wild black/thrash arrives unheralded right after staying till the end sometimes served with a pinch of Destruction ("Iron Command"), sometimes raging in a more stripped-down blacky fashion ("The Great Adversary"). The title-track closes the album in a more pensive way with a few surprising more technical death metal sweeps which may become a dominant tendency on later efforts.

Profanation of Innocence Demo, 2004
Deathstorm Demo, 2004
The Demo's 2004 Best of/Compilation, 2005
Goatwatchers United - Satans Goats Tribute II. Assault Split, 2005
Demonic Profanation Best of/Compilation, 2006
Necromancer Single, 2006
Satan's Cross Demo, 2007
Satan's Cross Full-length, 2007
...from the Bloodline of Cain Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NOCTURNAL HELL (SPAIN)

Based on the "Highway to the Fucking Kvlt" demo, this band (which is only one person, the alias Aboriorth) plays aggressive old school black/thrash which for most of the time is pure black metal with echoes of early Impaled Nazarene, but with a dirtier sound quality and not as expressive, murky semi-whispered vocals. The shadow of early Bathory starts to loom over near the end, too, the tracks there being shorter very close in spirit to the Swede's (R.I.P.) debut.

Bestial Worshipers (Fucking Imperial Blood) Demo, 2008
Highway to the Fucking Kvlt Demo, 2010
Spit on the Crucifix Split, 2011

NOCTURNAL WITCH (GERMANY)

Based on the full-length, these folks pull out bombastic black/thrash which has its both raging and more restrained side with thrash not very widely covered playing a second fiddle the whole time also stifled by the several blast-beating sections ("Black Death") scattered around. It shows its teeth more bravely on the "Pleasure to Kill" reminder "Resurrected Darkness", but the rest is pure blackness, professionally done, with a tasteful use of melody topped by gruff rending death metal vocals. Some of the band members are also involved with the classic heavy metal purveyors Serpent.

Into Dungeons EP, 2012
Summoning Hell Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NODE (ITALY)

One of the stalwarts on the modern technical thrash/death metal arena, this act mixes the dry mechanical riffs of Meshuggah with the more dynamic approach of Darkane adding a strong industrial flavour ala Fear Factory, consequently edning up sounding not far from the French Gojira at times on more recent works. This amalgam doesn't, however, apply to the very cool debut which is fine technical crime... sorry, death metal with touches of Death and Pestilence on a more modern base. On "Sweatshops" the guys incorporated the thrash and industrial elements, but being busy increasing the diversity and the appeal they seem to have forgotten about the higher level of musicianship, and from this album on the band's style is modern thrash/death metal with a technical twist the latter fading further and further away with each subsequent release.

Ask EP, 1996
Technical Crime Full-length, 1998
Sterilized EP, 2000
Sweatshops Full-length, 2002
Das Kapital Full-length, 2004
As God Kills Full-length, 2006
In The End Everything Is A Gag Full-length, 2010

Official Site

NOEAZY (SOUTH KOREA)

Modern thrash metal with rough deathy vocals which alternate with more screamy blacky ones; a few clean, both male and female, ones can also be heard. At times the guys tear it loose branching out in furious blasting black/death metal, but this variety is unnecessary, and makes this mish-mash even more embarrassing. When the band sticks to the more peaceful mid-pace, they sound almost convincing at times, but then metalcore breaks sneak in, and things get back to bad.

Discrepancy Full-Length, 2010

NOFUCK (ITALY)

From the name one understands that he can not possibly "fuck" with this band who offer a wild hectic mixture of thrash, death metal and hardcore. The music constantly jumps from heavy slower sections to brutal speedy ones, seldom adding cool melodic hooks ("Tragedy") which should have been more frequently present. An interesting moment is "Existenzminimum" near the end which is a stylish turn to modern technical thrash with intriguing riffs and more complex arrangements citing Coroner and Cynic along the way. The opener "Nofuck" supplements it well, however, lashing a couple of hard headbanging riffs with a surprisingly classic flavour. The vocalist will scare you with his very angry low-tuned tember.

Existenzminimum Full-length, 2007

Official Site

NOG WATT (USA)

Cool energetic thrash/crossover concentrating on a fast blitzkrieg delivery with a few slower pounding moments along the way; there are shades of Motorhead, the Belgians Acid, and the early crossover acts (D.R.I. and Suicidal Tendencies) in the musical approach while in the vocal department the singer comes close to Dawn Crosby (R.I.P.) (Detente, Fear of God) at times (could be a woman?).

Fear EP, 1985

NOHMAD (SPAIN)

Modern thrash with both balls and groove plus the odd more melodic swing; the guys thrash on at times unperturbed by their groovy infatuations producing a lot of dynamics along the way. Some formidable more complex exercises on the modern trends come forward (the steam-rolling dramatizer "Fearless Killing") in the middle, but the carefree spirit of the rest of the material is by all means equally as captivating. The angry shouty vocals take a nice turn to melodic clean singing on the very cool ballad "No One Will Ever Miss You". Thrash is the order of the day on the intense smasher "No Colours" which gives way later to the most melodic moments on the album including the soulful sections on the nice closer "Deadline" which also contains the best lead guitar work. This is a pleasant catchy listen never sounding boring or trite giving a more attractive appearance to the already worn out 90's trends.

Propaganda Full-length, 2010

Official Site

NOISE DISORDER (GREECE)

During the time of the most serious economic crisis in their very long history the Greeks seem to find consolation in thrash since the number of new thrash metal acts has increased dramatically for the past 3 years. This band play well done old school thrash with sharp riffs and good mean semi-shouty vocals. The guys change the pace the whole time paying a nice tribute to the 80's American scene with the excellent brooding power/thrash metal number "Under Command Suicide" which is a heavy epic piece with pounding riffs and dramatic developments.

Under Command Suicide Demo, 2012

Official Site

NOISEKILLER (BRAZIL)

These obscure "noisekillers" produce an uneven hesitation between the classic and modern trends resulting in tedious mid-paced proto-groovy stuff with shouty aggro-vocals. The guys bash with passion at times ("Killer Instinct", "Playing A Life In A World Of Opposites") with a naive hardcore-ish intensity, and these are the moments which will make you jump around for a while in the best tradition of Sick of It All and early Prong.

A Frozen Image In Time Full-length, 1998

NOISEM (USA)

Based on the debut: this is really cool aggressive thrash akin to Devastation and Torture the guys shredding with no remorse surprisingly keeping the situation within the thrash metal confines without borrowing too much form the neighbouring death metal territory (excluding the furious "Rotten Remains"). This is really intense super-fast music which doesn't rely on any other gimmicks except speedy merciless riffs topped by gruff semi-shouty death metal vocals.
"Blossoming Decay" is the next in line aggressive downpour with lashing fiery riffs scorching the listener this time the approach boldly venturing into a death metal territory (check out the short outrages "Burning" and "1132", the latter pure blasting death metal madness). Sophistication is out of the question; on the contrary, with each passing number the sound becomes more brutal and less controlled bordering on hardcore on a couple of shorters in the 2nd half. The pleasant (and only) surprise would be the hectic technical death metal piece "Graining Enamel"; the rest is played at the speed of light not making much sense from a thrash metal point-of-view.

Agony Defined Full-Length, 2013
Consumed EP, 2014
Blossoming Decay Full-length, 2015

Official Site

NOIZ

Metalcore-ish modern thrash, "noizy" and predictable, also adhering to brutal blasting death metal moments; the Swedish implements are the highlight and should have been used more often.

Heretic Confesion Full-Length, 2010

NOIZOME GROOVE (USA)

This super group contains members of more prominent acts like Hemlock, Todai is the Day, Indignity, Crisis, Dead Orchestra, etc. Still, this assembly fails to produce anything more than boring tedious "noizome" groovy post-thrash with repetitive toothless guitars without any highlights whatsoever. No wonder it has remained (and still is) such a deep underground entry... but at least the band name has been very appropriately chosen.

Plastic Revelation Full-length, 1997

NOKTURNEL (USA)

Based on "Fury Unleashed", this band mix brutal death, black metal and a little bit of thrash. There are cool technical riffs, and if the guys concentrate on this side of theirs for the future, the best probably for them would be yet to come. Now this wild mixture doesn't work very well, especially for the thrash metal fan.

The debut is another frantic offering clinging more towards thrash with the fashionable at the time death metal insertions. The delivery is quite chaotic and not very well organized recalling Incubus and Nocturnus on the more meaningful sections, with more accentuated bass work. The shorter numbers ("Sliding Down The Razor", "Revenge Of The Corpse", the blitzkrieg closer "Poltergeist") seem to work the better with their furious nature and sweeping fast-paced passages. "Global Suicide" is a cool reminder of the Death works from around the same time, and "My Hell" may enchant the more adventurous with its super-hectic decisions and maddening shreds, but the rest is too hard to swallow sounding like a work of a demented genius who has thrown all his wild dreams into one messy whole, hoping that the audience would be able to put the pieces together which may eventually happen after a few more careful listens.
The "Anti Grunge" EP is a small fierce effort the guys unleashing their ferocious hyper-active delivery on "A Collision Of Dimensions" which is a semi-stylish basher with cool melodic tunes partly ruined by the abrasive production. "Disturbed" is grinding chaos at first before delectable melodies come forward alongside choppy rhythms that completely disappear for the short hyper-blaster "Nuke Seattle".

Nothing But Hatred Full-length, 1993
Anti Grunge EP, 1994
Fury Unleashed Full-length, 2001

NOLE (USA)

Modern thrash/death metal of the melodic type with black metal dramatism thrown in, helped by the apocalyptic black metal screeches. The guys do a better job when they don't rely too much on speed, like on the dark galloping number "Undone Again", or the very good progressive/technical opus "Religion is a Whore" which combines atmospheric sleepy passages with complex guitar-driven ones.

Sin To Live Full-length, 2009

NOMADIC (USA)

Based on the sophomore effort, this act specializes in modern thrash/death which gets both heavy, groovy ("Martyr") and intense, hammering ("The Scroll"). Both sides get mixed well throughout, squashing a few awkward attempts at varying the picture: the clumsy doomy corer "Immerse The Hate"; and the more apt tribal/semi-acoustic instrumental "Asaro". The vocals are of the brutal low-tuned type, but somehow fit the thundering, steam-roller music.

Babylon Shitstem Full-length, 2008
Where the Corpse Is There the Vultures Will Gather Full-length, 2010

Official Site

NOMED (FRANCE)

One of the first French thrash metal bands who started playing aggressive thrash apparently influenced by their American colleagues. Their debut EP delivers exactly that, furious fast thrash with short pounding tracks in the vein of Morbid Saint and Dark Angel. "Like..." comes with better production and a more polished, also more complex sound, and the thrash attack comes with intricate more technical embellishments which give the album a fairly hectic, not very predictable vibe. This time there are hardcore/crossover numbers included which work very well combined with the forceful less ordinary thrashers. The comeback album in 2000 is more of a thrash/death metal mixture, but is again quite effective with interesting vocals ranging from black metal shrieks to low death metal growls.
The "Requiem" demo contains the same aggressive music, this time more death metal-oriented with the vocalist appropriately brutal with a clear death metal grunt. The guys vary things by adding the odd more lyrical moment (the slow passage on "L'Amour Et Le Crane"; after all, it's "amour" we're talking about...), and the lead guitars are melodic at times, plus a heavy doom-laden piece ("Abel Et Cain") thrown in towards the end; but the bashing side is almost as well expressed ("The Mission"; the nice closing thrashy galloper "Sepulture", where a great keyboard support can also be heard). Nothing bad here except for the noisy sound quality which stands on the way of the guitars at times.

Troop of Death EP, 1988
Like... Full-length, 1989
Requiem Demo, 1993
Silent Scream EP, 1997
A Vision Of God Full-length, 2000
Feel the Pain EP, 2001

Official Site

NOMENCLATURE DIABLERIE (AUSTRALIA)

This is a 2-song demo of aggressive thrash/death metal, perhaps the first effort of the kind in Australia. "Premature Creation" has a cool semi-technical thrash break in the middle, before it explodes into another merciless death metal assault. "Lovecraft" is pure death metal madness: fast and brutal.

888 Demo, 1988

NOMICON (FINLAND)

This super group features the omnipresent Roope Latvala (Stone, Children of Bodom, Waltari, etc.) in team with Tommi Launonen (Gandalf, Gloomy Grin, etc.), Miika Niemel (Thy Serpent, Shape of Despair, etc.), and Yke (Barathrum, Gloomy Grim, Thy Serpent, etc.). The "Tri-Angle" demo is a highly stylized affair, state-of-the-art technical thrash/death metal of a very hectic complex nature which has to be heard to be believed. The three songs presented are wild shredding masterpieces of a hectic constantly-changing nature with very fast rhythms intercepting with mazey elaborate guitars packed in three to maximum 4-min. There are abstract Voivod-ish sections, too, as well as compelling melodic hooks, in other words this is an utter delight sounding as though the guys were warming up for the eventual full-length which may have overshadowed even the more recent Hellwitch, Atheist and Pestilence output. Listening to this, one would by no means be surprised by the Necrophagist debut and the musical heritage of the acts from the Quebec area.

The split with their compatriots, the doom/deathsters Sarnath, is a logical continuation on the inventive, pretty much one-of-a-kind at the time, technical style from the demo with eight new tracks provided. "Category Mistake" is the ultimate head-spinner, a sure leftover from Atheist's "Unquestionable Presence", a constantly-turning into all directions piece. "No Thing" is more controlled with an avantgarde feel to it, a super-puzzling song with some of the most addictive technical riffage around. "Occurrence" is a fast frenetic technicaller, a technique which made acts like Cryptopsy heroes on the field; only that this one here contains a brilliant melodic technical hook which the Canadians are yet to produce. "Self" is a nice mix between fast technical shred and more modern dry passages not far from Meshuggah. "Aged" is speedy and melodic sounding like the most technical thrash/crossover piece ever created with a pinch of blasting death metal at the end. "To Observe" is an insane exhausting shredder which will tire you big time within less than 3-min, in case of you decide to follow the time-changes. "Conversion" is a longer composition (5-min), but the approach remains the same: ultra-technical guitars lash from left and right non-stop the relief coming in the form of a short slower, but equally as twisted, passage ala Coroner in the middle. "Talking About ..." will leave you speechless for the umpteenth time, so there will be not much to "talk about", this final track taking a slight jokey tone "flirting" with the main riff from "March of the S.O.D." wrapped in a dramatic vortex-like crescendo which goes up and down the whole time to a hallucinogenic effect. As a whole the guys here are moving more towards the death metal side, reaching the heights of technical metal even before this sub-genre had started to take a more definite coherent shape.
"Yellow" leaves all that was thrash metal behind, and turns into a wonderful technical/progressive death metal opera with assisting atmospheric black metal (think Cradle of Filth, above all) insertions. The super-complex guitars mix with enchanting keyboard melodies, and the tempos expectedly change the whole time, sometimes quite suddenly, to produce a tour de force seldom achieved before and after. The hyper-blasts epitomized are not annoying at all, and never last for more than a few seconds, albeit being quite frequent. The closing "Mecca" is a haunting doom/black/deathster with the technicality gone replaced by plenty of atmosphere and dramatism which would take over completely on the band's sophomore album.
"Halla" is a pensive doomy offering with black metal now a dominant genre. Thrash metal, of course, is nowhere to be heard, neither is death metal except for isolated speedier sections ("God Weaker Than Me"). Still, this release delivers on all counts in a genuine atmospheric way quite reminiscent of Septic Flesh, settling for a brooding mid-pace spiced with cool gothic passages creating an encompassing operatic environment also sharing some of the bombastic arrangements of Bal-Sagoth on the longer numbers.

The "De Rerum Natura" single is just two songs and is closer to thrash metal with the vocals now being more of the growly death metal variety. The music remains fairly weird and complex to the point of Mekong Delta-sque abstractism, but done in a more vigorous faster way. "Pursuit" is a surreal shredder and may sound quite illogical at first, and even second, listen, but the listener will by all means come back to this bizarre riff-fest regularly to try to discover new nuances there. "...Of the Tightness" combines Coroner with more intense proto-death riffage to produce a wonderful twisted number constantly switching between mazey slower and backward-styled faster sections, a brave innovative approach which few acts have attempted through the years (Morbid Angel, Beheaded Zombie, Droys), and previously only characteristic of the two aforementioned acts and two Belgians bands: Target and Chemical Breath. The frantic, much faster, ever-changing picture typical for the "Tri-Angle" demo and the following "The Me/Northodox" split is only barely touched: this is more patient stuff with the separate passages lasting longer, being more complete, which makes this short gem equally as compelling since the technicality is almost as high, but is achieved through more patience and less variation.

Tri-Angle Demo, 1991
De Rerum Natura Single, 1992
The Me/Northodox Split, 1995
Yellow Full-length, 1997
Halla Full-length, 2001

NON-HUMAN LEVEL (SWEDEN)

This band features two members of the technical death/thrash metal wizards Agretator and Darkane, so expect something high class. And, indeed, the music isn't too distant from the flamboyant style of these two bands, but is more varied with groovy parts inserted, and is more thrashy with an abundant presence of the lead guitar; a worthy addition to the metal field of recent years.

Non-Human Level Full-length, 2005

Official Site

NON-STOP! (USA)

Energetic modern/classic thrash with shades of crossover; the guys thrash with conviction with fast lashing riffs, but the most characteristic thing would be the very clean vocals, which have a unique child-like quality to them, acquiring the odd gruffer shade from time to time. "Do it for Yourself" and "Skel-O-Chop-Her" are aggressive proto-death cuts, with the closing "Baseball Bat" coming close to them in terms of aggression, only sounding a bit more melodic, and even technical. This is good fun, which will appeal to fans of the less serious, more uplifting side of the genre.

Forget the Consequence Full-length, 2011

Official Site

NON COMPOS MENTIS (AUSTRALIA)

This is the formation where the guys from Nothing Sacred tried their hands on some metal for the first time. The opening "The Ballad Of Phil Gresik" is a very misleading doomy, slow number, with almost no ties to thrash. Later things become much more interesting with great speedy thrashers, like "Kidney Punches", "NCM" which might pull you back because of the very screechy, hysterical direction the vocals sometimes take. "Excreter" is a heavier, slower thrashing piece, and the last track is another exercise in slow doomy metal: "Habeus Corpus", this time without vocals, and better (with notable meaty guitar work), since the brutal death-ish delivery of the singer is hardly the most suitable one to the much better music.

You're Next Punk Demo, 1986

NON FINIRE MAI (SLOVENIA)

Based on the demo, these folks provide quirky jumpy post-thrash with calm meditative clean vocals. An interesting combination as a whole with nice balladic interludes and funky passages, pretty laid-back with an alternative vibe marred by the not very clear sound quality.

Document Drama Demo, 1993
Pilotinstaller Full-length, 2002
Katzenjammer Full-length, 2005

Official Site

NONCONFORMITY (BRAZIL)

Modern thrash with heavy/power metal elements; decent vivid stuff with not very suitable shouty angry vocals. Groove helps here and there ("Culmination Of The Wretched"), but few will be the disappointed on major necksprainers like "As I Walk With The Nameless" and especially the brutal short deathster "Inborn Evil". Near the end the approach surprisingly becomes more serious with more complex rhythms, but also with an increased amount of groove. Some of the band members also play with the modern thrashers M-19.

Shackled Full-Length, 2016

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NONE DARE CALL IT CONSPIRACY (FINLAND)

Modern power/thrash metal with post-thrash elements; this is volcanic steam-roller music which may remind you of the Geezer side-project GZR, and in a similar way it serves more laid-back compositions ("Final Days") with a balladic touch, the main difference being the more strongly incorporated industrial aesthetics here. The heaviness inevitably "stumbles" towards doom metal and this is where the very good dramatic clean singer fits the best, his nasal croons quite reminiscent of the ones of the great Dax Riggs (Acid Bath) including his penchant to branch out into the unexpected with the casual more brutal death grunt. The 2nd half is all about atmosphere its gothic ambience culminating on the nice operatic closer "Star-Crossed".

Tales of the Lost Full-Length, 2013

NONE OF THE LIVING REMAIN (USA)

Fast, one-dimensional thrashcore which consists of short samey songs which develop in a kind of boring for a full-length up-tempo which seldom changes into slower pounding moments with an early Celtic Frost flavour. The singer is a very brutal death metal growler who expectedly never brings any variety to his visceral vocal approach.

Grim To The Brim Full-Length, 2012

Official Site

NONEUCLID (GERMANY)

This band is a side project for members of the black metallers Dark Fortress. This album is a shift from their main band into a technical thrash/death metal territory, and quite good at that. At times the music is pure thrashing delight ("Worm", "Coming in Tongues"), at others it gets quite fast, and at the same time considerably more complex with a certain progressive shade ("The Digital Diaspora"), and this is when the band strangely remind of the Brits Bal-Sagoth. "Void Bitch" is a very ambitious composition which in its almost 8-min will offer you thrash, death, gothic and symphonic metal, mixed really well together. The follower "Xenoglassy" is an awkward piece containing noises and semi-whispered voices and no music at all. "Time Raper" brings the album safely and confidently back to thrash metal waters before the closer "Murder of the Worlds" scatters it again into other directions (doom metal, above all) with its brooding slow riffs and industrial noises. As just a one-album collaboration it works fine, but if the guys intend to turn it into a full-time occupation, it would probably be better if they don't stray too much from the thrash/death metal path.
"Metatheosis" will enchant the listener with its mechinical headbanging riffage which starts flowing from the very opener "Paranoid Alkaloid". The situation only gets more aggressive on the next "Cult of One" before "Buried Forever" takes more spacey progressive dimensions. After it the guys really lose it descending to some balladic doomisms on an abrasive industrial base partly saved by the more dynamic moments on the "Into the Light" trilogy. The sterile robotic cacophony reaches its culmination on the colossal 16.5-min closer "None So Lucid" which is a "Godflesh-meets-Alchemist" extravaganza, hardly fitting for this album, but aptly drawing future paths to be explored.

The Crawling Chaos Full-length, 2008
Metatheosis Full-length, 2014

Official Site

NONEXIST (SWEDEN)

Nonexist is a side project for the progressive metal act Andromeda's guitarist Johan Reinholdz who invites Johan Liiva, a former singer of Arch Enemy, to take part in the recording process. The style is closer to Arch Enemy than to Andromeda being is technical with nice guitar work showing Reinholdz as equally gifted to deal with several sides of the metal spectre. The music is more in the thrash metal department with shades of the Gothenburg-sound. Apparently this would remain the band's only album as both Reinholdz and Liiva are being busy with things outside Nonexist for the past few years.

"From My Cold Dead Hands": the Johans are back in action after a lengthy 10-year break, but fans of the good debut shouldn't be disappointed: this is the same blistering modern thrash/death served with a pinch of technicality this times probably more progressively-tinged as evident from the good, both energetic and pensive, opener "Dark And Tortured Universe" which ends in a meditative balladic fashion. Aftwerwards the guys concentrate more on the bashing side of the genre also adhering to spasmodic blast-beats whenever possible turning this album into a quite unpredictable, eventful listen. The weird quiet sections continue to show up ("Fire At Will" and elsewhere) later on, but they don't really drag the effort down which also greatly benefits from Reinholdz's inspired lead guitar performance.

"Throne of Scars" is a definite step back from the guys' no-bars-held approach of old although after a mild timid beginning they find the right way to thrash/death with force as evident from "The New Flesh", a short brutalizer. "Throne Of Scars" takes a more melodic, progressive direction, but "Before The Storm Takes Me" cancels its oblivious escapades with a portion of fast technical riffs, a very cool surreal cut with an appropriate operatic support. The same symbiosis is partially achieved on "Rodents Of War" which mostly benefits from the great melodic leads, and "Cathedrals Beyond" is largely an atmospheric doom metal opus. The more technical shred eventually returns for "The Anatomy Of Insanity" which also contains several spasmodic blast-beating passages, before the band close it down with two covers: Massacre's "Chamber Of Ages/Dawn Of Eternity" done well with some inspired lead guitar work again; and Sepultura's "Escape To The Void" also rendered faithfully with cutting guitars and a probably more accentuated deathy flavour.

Deus Deceptor Full-length, 2002
From My Cold Dead Hands Full-Length, 2012
Throne of Scars Full-Length, 2015

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NONMANDOL (GREECE)

An all-female Greek act who only released this obscure 2-song EP offering of punky laid-back thrash/crossover sustained in a leisure mid-pace with gruff semi-clean mid-ranged vocals.

Nonmandol EP, 1994

NONSENSE ADDICTION (GREECE)

2 songs of modern metalcore-ish thrash in a dynamic mid to up-pace with not too many dragging moments; the guitars lose their edge a bit here and there, but generally this is dynamic music with not very pleasant shouty vocals.

Incoming Dimention Demo, 2011

NOPLACETOHIDE (NORWAY)

Based on the debut: an unconventional take on modern thrash metal; this is industrialized music, fairly thrashy as well, similar to the Voivod efforts with Eric Forrest, or the later works of the Canadians Obliveon. There are straight headbanging tracks, but then come the time changes and the abstract riffs which one might find awkward and illogical, at least at first listen. There aren't too many easy riffs to swallow here; one has to take his time with these guys because this is multi-layered stuff which requires repeated listens, but it will be a reward, rather than a disappointment in the end. For fans of the unusual and more engaging side of thrash metal, this album is worth tracking down. The sophomore effort "Zukunft", on the other hand, has very little to do with thrash being a much more ordinary industrial death metal affair.

Vergangenheit Full-length, 1995
Zukunft Full-length, 2005

Official Site

NOPRESION (SPAIN)

Based on "Vision", this is cool 80's thrash mixed with death metal, recalling Merciless' debut, or Attomica's "Disturbing The Noise". The Spaniards are more diverse with slower heavier songs also included ("Vision", "Ulcera"). The bass bottom is very strong and at times dominates over the guitars. The vocals are a mix between hardcore and death metal-styled ones.

Visi=n Full-length, 1993
Sobre Fosas y Vampiros Full-length, 1995
Hello! Full-length, 1999

NORCELEMENT (CHINA)

Fresh, invigorating thrash/death metal of the Floridian school served with some of the most low-tuned guttural vocals of recent years. The music is tight and also technical, in a way not too diferent from early Suffocation although the Chinese are not really interested in brutal play too much preferring instead to crush with dynamic jumpy riffage. Some songs are very atmospheric with echoes of both Septic Flesh and Bolt Thrower, and the seismic guitars on those are graced with an elegiac shade of doom, quite contrasting to the much faster surrounding material. As a whole we have a capable blend of two opposite styles, well embedded into one attractive picture, with a well measured balance between melody and aggression.

Flame in Darkness Full-length, 2009

Official Site

NORD (RUSSIA)

These Russians offer cool modern speed/thrash with several slower proto-groovy breaks. The mix works thanks to the dynamic approach and the crisp guitar sound which gives the riffs a nice cutting edge. Near the end the songs become heavier and groovier, even reaching the balladic area ("Lubi Menia") where the singer adds something more tender to his overall good performance, reflected in consistent clean mid-ranged antics.

Krovnie Uzui Full-Length, 2011

NORDESTH (SPAIN)

Another Spanish obscurity offering state-of-the-art fast, dynamic technical retro thrash/death which is intelligently executed on the clever opener "Infected" before the following title-track brings it to even higher, more ambitious dimensions with its swirling decisions and hectic riffage. "Thoughless World" is a creepy progressiver recalling mid-period Death and Nocturnus, leaving the headbanging overtones for "Dies Alter" and the technical death metal outrage "Future Victims". "Agony of Living" is the next in line fascinating mixture of technicality and aggression, a very eventful composition with numerous surprises and great leads. "Psychopath" is mostly pounding dramatisms, but watch out for the several intricate thrashy breaks towards the end. The closer "April 1937" is an enchanting ambient instrumental, a glorifying epitaph to this grand effort which should be much better known.

Circle of Fear Full-Length, 1996

NORDIC MIST (USA)

This band, unlike the other one from this split, stay closer to the old Celtic Frost sound, rather than Hellhammer. The singer doesn't stray from the Tom G. Warrior style, and the music delivers the goods with meaty heavy riffs and stylish insertions, like female vocals and atmospheric orchestral passages, echoes from "Into the Pandemonium" apparently.

Cracking the Hoarfrost/Into the Psyche Delve Split, 2006

My Space

NORIKUM (AUSTRIA)

Based on the full-length, this act provide modern dynamic thrash with shades of metalcore. The guys know their craft not forgetting about its more intense side: the headbanging hymn "Trauma", the cool shredding deathster "Courage to Kill". "Running in Circles" is a fine technical exercise in more technical thrash/death which later turns into more ordinary Gothenburg melo-death. The band overdo it a bit on the last 8-min or so compositions which are overloaded with stuff the peaceful mid-sections stretching for too long to be considered a pleasant deviation. Some of the musicians lend their helping hands to their compatriots Ellende.

In Chains of Misery EP, 2010
Omnivore EP, 2012
Regress in Progress Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NORM REJECTION (MALTA)

The EP offers groovy post-thrash with an alternative/grunge edge and some industrial overtones ala Puncture and Soulstorm. Sometimes the music abandons the boring groovy patterns and this is when more up-tempo rhythms can be heard: "Caged".

Deconform Full-length, 1998
0002 Full-length, 2000
Malta Not For Sale EP, 2008

Official Site

NORMAH (GREECE)

A pleasant surprise from Greece this way comes: four girls from Athens have gotten together for the making of this appealing blend of power, thrash and doom which is characterized by enchanting Oriental melodies on top of a super heavy riff-base with seismic echoes. The singer is a very good mid-ranger with a few more passionate inclusions, but suits perfectly the brooding tone of the music without experimenting with her voice too much. "Iron Mother" introduces all the nuances from the band's delivery before "Tormentor 33" starts thrashing harder with a few sudden speedy moments among the dramatic shred and the virtuous solos. "Spirit of the Night" is a more immediate cut with a nice balladic section and an imposing doomy exit, and "Redheadz" is a steam-rolling lasher giving way to the dark doomy semi-balladic wizardry of the final "Clown" which also includes sparce brutal death metal vocals. This is more than a promising entry for the girls into the music arena, and one can only wait eagerly for their later "exploits".

Darkest Is the Hour Before Dawn EP, 2012

Official Site

NORTH SYNDROM (RUSSIA)

An obscure work of good semi-technical thrash reminiscent of 80's Megadeth with a shade of the Bay-Area school, similarities with the Mustaine's gang also in the vocal department. "Barricades" opens the album in a brisk headbanging fashion ala early Testament, but "Just a Horrible Place" is vintage mid-90's Megadeth, slower, melodic and carefree. "Ancient Wheels" follows the same path, but is both more dynamic and more technical thrashing with gusto for most of the time. Then the guys lose it in the middle with the awkward bluesy ballad "Into the Fire" which is miles away from the nostalgic atmosphere of "Tout Le Monde" although it hardly has this song as a model opting instead for a classic heavy/doom metal feel ala Black Sabbath. "O, Russia!" is even more confusing being an acoustic tender piece, and one may find this break from thrash a bit longer than what the good taste allows. "As Wolf Alone" returns to a thrashy Megadeth territory moshing in mid-pace without any technical gimmicks influencing the following "Unspeakable Chads", but the closing "Seek What We Lost" is a revelation with its intense sharp riffs ending this effort in the way it started, in a vigorous Bay-Area-sque manner. Despite the few setbacks in the middle, thic act is a cool addition to the ones from Russia and the former Soviet republics who embraced the Megadeth idea tighter through the years (the Ukrainians Trashmachine, Shah (mostly on their swansong "P.S.I.H.O"), Deadxhead of the more recent ones).

Seek What We Lost Full-length, 1994

Fan Site

NORTHERN ASH (USA)

Based on "For Thine Is The Kingdom", this band operates in the extreme metal field mixing thrash, black and death metal by favouring black metal the most introducing numerous hyper-blasts along the way. The two guys involved here try to keep the pace quite fast, but it's the slower compositions which seem to deliver better: the atmospheric doomster "Silent, Spiritual Devourment". The musicianship still has room for improvement, though: the drums have a hollow feeling to them, and the guitars sound dissipated and too samey. The singer is a brutal low-tuner, and fits well the aggressive musical approach. Both band members are also involved in the doom/death metal outfit Entorn.

The Age of Irrationality Full-length, 2008
For Thine Is The Kingdom Full-length, 2010

My Space

NORTHERN DISCIPLINE (FINLAND)

Based on the debut: heavy groovy 90's post-thrash, energetic and intense, touching the Black Album (the semi-balladic "Nothing Remains") and GZR on the best moments. The "duel" between the pure hardcore shouts and the semi-clean vocals ala Chris Holmes isn't bad, and the closing "Killed By Suffocation" manages to thrash a few hearts out at the end with its brisk up-tempo approach.
On "Harvester Of Hate" the band have added more aggressive melo-death metal tunes and have made, as a whole, a more appealing side of this groovy post-thrash saga which even thrashes hard without the "post-" part at times. The singer is angry and deathy, and fits the modern nature of the music quite well.
"Third Decimation" goes up the aggression scale with more energetic, more uplifting rhythms which will keep the mosh going ("Destination Ruin", "No Sympathy") for at least half the time although more melodic, progressive variations like "Means of Escape" are also worth checking out. "Concealed" recalls the earlier, post-thrashy exploits, but its dark gothic aura keeps it afloat, matching the sombre aesthetics of the remaining material among which "Absent Inception" is an admirable, more technical death-laced shredder.

Northern Discipline EP, 2003
Burn-Beaten Soil Full-length, 2006
Harvester Of Hate Full-length, 2011
Third Decimation Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NORTHERN EMPIRE (DENMARK)

This is one of the most impressive Danist metal acts having started as Prophecy where the style was classic American power metal. Then in the late-80's they were transformed into Prophets of Doom releasing one album ("Access to Wisdom", 1989) of standout progressive power/speed/thrash, a milestone in Danish metal history. And here they are in the early-90's under a different guise. The "Make Believe" demo sees them riding the crest of the wave once again with standout technical power/thrash ala Psychotic Waltz and Realm. "Resurrection Complete" is an awesome opener with schizoid weaving riffs which march onward in a consistent mid-tempo fashion till the excellent fast-paced exit, speed/thrash at its most spasmodic. "La Cafe Nour" is an amorphous piece which also shares some of the dramatism of mid-period Fates Warning graced by a nice quiet interlude and the staple speedy epitaph. "Prosperous Delusion" recalls the guys' early exploits as Prophecy sticking to more conventional American power metal rules including in the more dynamic galloping stroke and the epic build-ups in the second half. "Visual Breed" is a sophisticated shredder with not as rigorous riffs, but watch out for the speedy technical passage later on which is vintage Toxik. The vocals are a bit higher-pitched than the ones on the Prophets of Doom effort, but deliver all the same with their heroic pathos.
The "Jessup's Farm" demo contains all the four tracks from the preceding one, and apart from them another six compositions which continue the band's quest for progression. The title-track is a spastic, not very predictable headbanger ala Realm, and "Silence Machine" is a brooding piece reminiscent of the Swedes Hexenhaus, a strangely effective hypnotic piece with captivating, elusive technical decisions. "Unspoken Prayers" moves up the dynamics scale, and the impetuous gallops on this one soon turn to intense dark thrash with Hexenhaus again a very close soundalike, especially in the jumpy riff-section in the second half. The instrumental "Asian Retreat" shreds with the utmost precision in the beginning the riffage transforming into a vortex of not very fast, but impressive intricate passages those in their turn replaced by a sprawling balladic break, before another sweep of vitriolic technical riffage appears. "Treacherous Mind" is a surreal progressive thrasher which starts with a speedy passage before more technical, also dramatic, rhythms start piling up mid-way only to return to the stylish dynamic fast-paced motifs near the end. "Temptation Christ" closes this grand effort with a more officiant rhythm-section, but watch out for another speedy "skirmish" as well as a cool epic deviation. It's underground heroes like these that kept classic metal alive through the gloomy 90's despite the fact that theit last two demos were pretty mild modernized progressive rockers.

Make Believe Demo, 1990
Jessup's Farm Demo, 1992
It's Time Demo, 1993
Unreleased Demo Demo, 1993

My Space

NORTHWINDS (USA)

A potent mixture of power, speed and thrash metal which recalls Aftermath and Heathen; some of the tracks have this ambitious, but also hectic angle, typical for the works of Aftermath as though the guys want to insert elements from all the three aforementioned styles in just one composition, like on the opener "Inside You Forever". Fortunately this doesn't happen very often as the rest is more controlled, and quite memorable. Due to the great choruses (and not only) the songs differ from each other. There's a certain level of complexity in the song-writing, but not a very big one, and great faster pieces like "Father's Home Now", or the really intense killers "Lostology" and "Abraham" will make you headbang in no time and sing along to the very infectious choruses. This cool music has its epic/pagan flair as well, carried by the fine "Evermore", a track which acts like Falconer are yet to offer. The last song, with the suggestive title "Generic Mosh Song", is exactly what it promises: aggressive, hardcore-tinged number: good, but too out of context, compared with the rest.

Sleep With Evil Full-length, 1990

NOSFERATTUS (BRAZIL)

Based on the live demo, this deeply underground outfit "play" purely amateurish thrash/proto-death which features constant unintelligible bashing with hollow drums and echoing guitars which can hardly hold a coherent melodic motif for more than 10-sec. Don't try to recognize the Sodom cover of "Sepulchral Voice" at the end: it'll take quite a few listens before one starts to notice any resemblances between this primal aural cacophony and the original.

Live Demo, 1988
Don't Live Demo, 1989

NOSFERATU (INDONESIA)

This is moderate friendly power/thrash which main merit is that it sounds quite classic for the time of release. Otherwise the music is the expected mix of fast and slower cuts; among the latter one can come across a few nice ballads ("To Hurt The One..."). Some admirable guitar work can also be caught on "Sick Of Goodbyes" which may have impressed none other than the guitar virtuoso Chris Impellitteri who later recruited the guitarist Mark Bistany for a few of his solo efforts later.

Visible but Untouched Full-Length, 1994

NOSPHERATU (BRAZIL)

This is typical for the time rough post-thrash with a lot of groove present, but a few dynamic sections can also be caught as well as some bluesy and doomy moments. Prepare to be pleasantly surprised on the crushing piece "Today is the Day" which will shatter your senses in a major headbanging way. The vocalist is more on the semi-shouty death metal side.

Reveal Yourself To Us Demo, 1994

NOSPHERATU (ITALY)

This Italian outfit pull out a refreshing blend of classic and more modern post-thrash (read some groove) which was very well conformed with the tastes at the time. "Lord Of Silence" runs away from the formula wiht vicious speedy gutars, and its shining example is immediately followed by the even more aggressive "Memories Return" which even recalls Sepultura's mid-period heroics. "Rock'n'Roll Slob" in the middle is a radio-friendly joke, but the 2nd half serves more niceties, like the brutal shredder "Beware" and the ripping headbanger "Crush!!!". Not to forget the short piece of fury, the closer "Think To Be God", a major neck-sprainer with tasteful melodic leads. The vocals are gruff shouty, semi-death metal ones slightly resembling the ones of Max Cavalera.

Subway 1088 Full-Length, 1995

NOSTRADAMEUS (SWEDEN)

We have quite a few speed/power metal acts from the 90's leaving the oversaturated field they represented initially, to concentrate more on the "dark" thrashy side of things (Eidolon, Manticora, Eldritch, Courageous, Squealer, Sacred Steel, etc.). Nostradameus definitely belong to this list as well; the line-up features three members of Pathos, but the music has very few technical pretensions. The guys started promisingly with the excellent speed metal-based debut which comes quite close to early Blind Guardian and early Helloween music-wise (the singer Freddy Persson's voice seldom leaves the mid-range, also missing something in the emotion department). "The Prophet of Evil" is not too far behind, but the sound is more 90's-based and happier and consequently less impressive, except for the colossal 12-min opus at the end "Final Battle" which is followed by the Europe cover of "Scream of Anger". "The Third Prophecy" is a commendable work of classic speed/power metal mixing all-out speedsters with crunchy heavy pounders with a shade of thrash.

"Hellbound" is an explosive slab of retro power, speed and thrash metal full of instant speed/thrash classics pouring loads of sharp intense riffs, energetic tempos and a couple of really infectious choruses. The approach is much more aggressive than the one on their previous output, and some tracks are full takes on vigorous exhilirating thrash.
"Pathways" arrives after a lengthy 3-year break, and introduces a more modern and a less satisfying sound, reminiscent of Squealer's "Confrontation Street"; the tempo is mostly mid, and the high speed antics from the past are badly missing, since now the approach is too samey lacking energy ("P.I.R." is a brisk speed/thrasher, and partially "Wall of Anger", but that's basically it) and pace emitting a dark depressing atmosphere contrary to the jolly feeling permeating the older albums.
The electronic intro of "Illusion's Parade"'s opener "Art of Deception" may throw you into consternation, but all will get back to normal after the galloping riffs overtake later on; this one sounds almost like the preceding album never happened: uplifting classic speed/thrash with a great chorus. "Mariner" shows no sings of loosening up, thrashing with full force, the only relief coming from the nice melodic chorus. "Walk of Pain" is the trade mark heavy power metal break, but "Nothing" is already edgier and faster. "Eclipse of the Sun Cult" is a similar to "Final Battle" exercise in more thought-out almost progressive metal, a bit underwhelming lacking the excitement and pace of the rest which completely disappears on "Broken Soul", is a laid-back sleeper with semi-balladic pretensions. The guys eventually switch back to thrash with the furious steel-laden "Armageddon Forever" which overshadows the closing "Time for Madness" that takes a more melodic sing-along approach, but is a fitting dark power/thrasher. Although this effort can't be ranked as high as "Hellbound", it sees the band abandoning the not very desirable modern tendencies from the last album putting the speed a level up and generally bringing back the happy optimistic nuances which have always done them good in the past.

Words of Nostradameus Full-length, 2000
The Prophet of Evil Full-length, 2001
The Third Prophecy Full-length, 2003
Hellbound Full-length, 2004
Pathways Full-length, 2007
Illusion's Parade Full-length, 2009

Official Site

NOSTREDAME (POLAND)

These Poles indulge in badly sounding (production-wise) atmospheric thrash/death which also incorporates doom metal sections whenever appropriate, and consequently the fast-paced moments aren't that many the exception being the wild shredder "Whisperer in the Darkness" which thrashes with style overcoming its doomy nature successfully. The singer semi-recites in a forceful deathy fashion seldom unleashing scary agonizing shouts.

Prophecies Full-Length, 1995

NOSTROMO (CZECH)

Cool intense death/thrashy obscurity with some inspired technical guitar work not far from their compatriots Assesor. Even small "fires" like the 2-min "Fire" are chokeful of clever riffage, not to mention the title-track which is a prime technicaller with twisting, disorienting leads and riffs. "Hades", on the other hand, is a total bashing madness so there's something for everyone here. The sound quality is suitably muddy, and the lead guitar work is admirable all over trying to compensate for the less impressive indifferent semi-declamatory singer.

Zatmened Casu Demo, 1991

NOT AS OTHERS (GERMANY)

This is abrasive modern thrashcore which has all the staple tools of the trade (jumpy rhythms, heavy grooves, up-tempo passages, etc.) for a modern release, but with Pro-Pain and Madball still alive and well it's not very likely that this act will make a lot of heads turn.

Bastards Arrived Full-Length, 2015

NOT FRAGILE (GERMANY)

This great band remained in the shadow of many less striking acts despite their almost constant presence on the scene and a career spanning three decades. Their debut "Who Dares Wins" EP is an essential speed/thrash metal classic, one of the finest products of the Euro-speed metal movement, second only to "Walls of Jericho" perhaps. This is "Reign in Blood" of speed metal: pure relentless speed metal attack frequently bordering on thrash, lasting for a bit more than half an hour with no melodic deviations, like on Iron Angel's "Winds of War" (remember "Son of a Bitch" and "Born to Rock"), or epic/progressive opuses like on Blind Guardian's "Battalions of Fear" (remember "Majesty"). The singer Torsten Buczko has a good high-pitched melodic voice, perfectly fitting the fast-paced music, resembling a less hoarse and more intelligible Kai Hansen. They had an immediate follow-up ready less than a year later under the title "One Way to Glory", but for some mysterious reason only three tracks from this album saw the light of day at the time, in the form of a 3-song EP titled "Lost in a Dream". In the early 90's this effort was released twice: as "Hard to be Alive" in Japan in 1992, and as "Lost in a Dream" again in Europe in 1993. The style is pretty much the same bombastic speed/thrash with the band giving an enormous push to the 90's speed metal scene (and the scene needed it since in those times Helloween have already digressed into something too awful to be described, Gamma Ray were still treading heavy/power metal waters, and Blind Guardian were becoming more and more epic and slower) although very few were the bands who could equal these guys in terms of both intensity and consistency.

"The Return" is a collection of older and newer material the band getting ready for a longer break. The new millennium saw the guys on top of the speed metal movement again with a string of excellent energetic fast-paced works with "21st Century Ballroom" containing a mellower material, and "Yesterday's Heroes" being more speed/thrash-fixated in a way not quite dissimilar to the debut, based on an unreleased material plus a couple of covers.

"Time To Wonder" is glorious speed/thrash metal in the best manner of Killer's "Habemus Metal" and, of course, the band's earlier exploits; a lesson in speed seldom surpassed in the new millennium. The music will sweep you from the very start with the raging speed/thrasher "Time To Wonder" which introduces all which made their early days so memorable: the sharp riffs, the catchy choruses, the melodic vocal lines, the screaming leads, etc. "The Beast In Black" is a bit cheesier reminding of the Gamma Ray heydays, only more thrash-oriented including in the vocal department where Torsten Buczko really recalls Kai Hansen quite a bit. "Starbreaker", which isn't a Judas Priest cover, is staple retro speed metal, and the rest follows closely very seldom slowing down, often jumping on the pure thrash metal wagon: the fast-paced "Hellion's Dungeon", the doomy crusher "Queen Of The Sea", the mid-tempo shredder "Fortress Of Power". From the old timers from the German scene (Helloween, Gamma Ray, Grave Digger, Running Wild, Rage, etc.) these guys are by far in the finest shape of them all at present, and are the fiercest competition to the newcomers on the field from Germany and worldwide.
"Scratch the Surface" is the band's heaviest work to date, most of the time being pure thrash metal, a tendency clearly shown with the explosive opener "Speed Loader" which aggressive delivery is appropriately relieved by the staple melodic chorus. More laid-back mid-tempo power/thrash can be heard on the next "Master Machine", but the intensity goes up with another faster-paced thrasher carrying the album-title. The jolly roller-coaster speed metal is finally brought with "Rocket to the Moon", but "Power to the Universe" is hard-hitting thrash in up-tempo. "Centurion" is a curious, but listenable mix of modern groovy metal and speed/thrash, and the instrumental "Keep Your Mouth Shut" follows a similar mixture thrashing a bit faster. "Perfect Sledgehammer" justifies its title being a short speed/thrash metal bomb after which more time for the early speed metal scene is found on "10000 Black Demons". "Holy Man" is a nice heavy ballad followed by three brisk speed/thrashing pieces, blending pounding proto-modern thrash riffs with the trade mark speedy ones ("Cathedral of Power") or lashing out pure classic speed metal ("Tear Into the Weekend"). The guitar sound is really heavy and smashing with adherences to more modern times, and the band would have been hard to recognize if it wasn't for Torsten Buczko's melodic emotional vocals and the characteristic catchy choruses. Still, this effort delivers on all counts showing the band's "darker side", sounding angrier and more aggressive.

"Shout to the Master" is too radio-friendly to be a match to the couple of its more aggressive predecessors raising the flag of 90's power/speed metal too high to make them look like the pioneers in this genre. This is mild merry music which would appeal to fans of later-period Helloween, Gamma Ray, Running Wild, and Iron Saviour. The guys pay tribute to one of the veterans on the speed metal scene (Exciter in this case) with the cover of "Stand Up And Fight" from their debut.

Who Dares Wins Full-length, 1988
Lost in a Dream EP, 1989
Hard To Be Alive Full-length, 1992
Lost In A Dream Full-length, 1993
The Return Full-length, 1995
21st Century Ballroom Full-length, 2001
Yesterday's Heroes Full-length, 2003
Time To Wonder Full-length, 2005
Scratch the Surface Full-length, 2007
Shout to the Master Full-Length, 2013

Official Site

NOT US (USA)

This is the same band who were known as Natas previously (see the review on the same page). Based on the EP, this is aggressive thrash/crossover, quite chaotic and hectic at times, but without any technical merits. There are grindcore elements scattered throughout ("Dare to be Different").

Think What You Want EP, 1989
Wild Rags Limited Edition Split, 1990

NOTHING (AUSTRALIA)

The debut EP: well, these guys offer more than "nothing", like their name might suggest; a lot more, actually. This trio pulls out fairly good technical thrash which sounds quite close to Coroner's "Mental Vortex" on the best moments; the opener "Jar of Dirt And Fear", which with its twisted riffs and illogical tempo changes will remind you of "Semtex Revolution" from that same Coroner album, and the closer "Gordian Knot": a brilliant instrumental, an encyclopaedia of mighty technical riffage. The rest is probably less striking with modern thrash elements inserted as well as gothic ones on the beautiful, but too melodic "Baroque", including angelic female vocals in the beginning.
The "Nothing" EP is the right way up the band leaning towards the progressive with the disorienting "The Whip", before "Cannibal Holocaust" instills some seeming linearity with its more orthodox semi-technical death metal arrangements. Later on one will come across the hallucinogenic 9-min closer "Hegira", and the picture will become unclear once again as to what exactly is happening here: is this thrash, death, or progressive; or just an extreme metal opera which take take bigger proportions on later works?
The full-length is interesting modern thrash/death with a few more intricate quirks ("Primitive Stain"); "Floating In A Malestrom" recalls Death at their prime, and its more complex, mazey character would please everyone since there's also quite a bit of hard-hitting thrashing on it among the more stylish implements. "The Frailty Of Human Kindness" calls for help more brutal death metal insertions, but its immediate follow-up is the semi-balladic reliever "Script Of Sorrow" the latter's mellow nature later copied by the lead-driven closer "The Desolation Nocturne".

Involution EP, 2007
The Torture of the Nameless Full-Length, 2009
Nothing EP, 2016

Official Site

NOTHING FACE (BRAZIL)

The "Dying Age" demo: 3 tracks of intense modern thrash metal which starts in a somewhat unpromising manner with the ordinary mid-paced title-track, before switching onto more aggressive thrash with "Smog Clouds" and "Whos The True"; not bad at all, there's plenty of energy and hard-hitting riffs to be enjoyed here; it's just that the rough hardcore-ish vocals ala Wattie (The Exploited) are kind of not up to par with the good music.

Dying Age Demo, 1995
Brave New World Demo, 1999

NOTHING SACRED (AUSTRALIA)

Nothing Sacred are perhaps the first thrash metal band from Australia. Their debut EP is very similar to the Americans Aftermath's debut: a mixture of power and speed metal with hints at thrash. "Deathwish" is a heavy/power metal track; "No Rest" picks up a little more speed, but remains within the confines of the power metal genre. "Old Man" is a very cool ballad and could be considered the highlight. "The Curse" is a nice up-tempo power/thrasher with nice Oriental guitar tunes and is the only song which fully epitomizes the thrash metal spirit.

"Let Us Prey" is their real initiation into thrash metal for the band, a good album with short forceful headbangers reminiscent of Razor, with a touch of Destructor on the less intense material. "Damaged" and "Grey Slayer" remind of the debut being heavier and slower power/thrash numbers, and are a nice change from the faster pattern followed for most of the time. This same pattern bears really "tasty fruit": the intense "Freddy Kruger" which would stand proud even on "Shotgun Messiah"; the aggressive thrashing madness "Let Us Pray" which goes even beyond the realms of thrash for a while; the awesome Agent Steel-esque "This is War". Even the catchy power/thrash metal hymn "War Heads", with its slightly cheesy chorus and attitude, is quite cool.

Deathwish EP, 1986
Let Us Prey Full-length, 1988

My Space

NOTHING SACRED (CHILE)

Sloppy, mish-mashy trbute to the old school, of course, crossing thrash (not that much) with death metal "courting" the brutal side of the mix in the beginning before the appearance of "Eterno Martirio" which is an atmospheric, progressive composition lifting the musicianship a few notches up, influencing the following 8.5-min opus "He Sign Of Death". However, the highlight on this uneven, but interesting, affair is the closing title-track, a seamless provider of stylish, semi-technical riffs, operatic melodic tunes, and elaborate mazey passages emmbedded in dark, Gothic atmosphere. The vocals are gruff, brutal death metal ones, but suit the ominous, sinister mood of the album.

Remember Of The Old School Full-Length, 2011

NOTHINGNESS (FRANCE)

Based on the demo, these folks specialize in clever bashing thrash/crossover which doesn't shy away from the casual more technical trick ("Control Yourself"), especially on the gorgeous short shredder "Love Cries" which is technical speed/thrash at its least predictable. The guys don't fuss around and play on high speed for most of the time the dynamic musical approach assisted by gruff angry, semi-shouty vocals. Reportedly on the full-length the band switched onto industrial.

Will Humanity...Die? Demo, 1991
Manufactured Full-Length, 1995

My Space

NOTORICA (SLOVAKIA)

Based on the debut demo, this act indulges in intense deathy thrash of the old school which comes with a very bad, fuzzy sound quality. Spasmodic blasting sections are introduced on almost every track, at more or less appropriate moments, but those are clearly the inferior side adhering to mindless violent bash. Musical proficiency would hardly come to mind when listening to this spontaneous outburst which is at times insanely fast ("Narkoman"). Surprisingly, the last 3 compositions slow down and become much longer, trying to spice the approach with a more elaborate song-writing, including with a shockinly tender, balladic instrumental "Orchestrelka" which also features good bass support, acquitting the band with a much better musical performance. The singer is a dispassionate semi-shouter who fits the merciless music despite his strained delivery.

Svet Nesilia Demo, 1991
Rozklad Demo, 1991
Slovo Me Apokalypsa Demo, 1992
Uncomprehensibility Demo, 1992

NOTURNALL (BRAZIL)

Based on the self-titled debut, this band offer modern power/thrash with heavy pounding rhythms and cool emotional clean vocals. The tempo doesn't go up too much, but the seismic jumpy riffage compensates for the relative lack of speed. The 2nd half is blander due to the increased presence of ballads/semi-ballads which at least provide a more appropriate ground for the really good vocal exploits.

Noturnall Full-length, 2014
Back to Fuck You Up! Full-length, 2015

Official Site

NOUVELLE GAIA (CHILE)

Based on "El Arte De Engendrar El Miedo": this band offer prototypical modern thrash/death metal with strong nods to the Swedish school which at least steers clear of the detrimental clean vocal insertions although the singer here isn't the most pleasant hardcore-ish shouter. The music hesitates between more up-tempo thrashers and slower, softer tracks, undesirably favouring the latter.

Todos Los Sue'b1os Mueren Sofocados En El Progreso Full-length, 2003
El Arte De Engendrar El Miedo Full-length, 2008

Official Site

NOVARMADA (VENEZUELA)

Modern post-thrash of the more intense thrashy variety with a few touches from the Swedish school the resulting concoction lacking coherence, but winning in the end due to its melodic nature where numerous catchy leads and riffs reside. The more intense side of the guys' style is definitely worth looking more into in the future: there's a shadow ala Trivium "lurking" there...

Colateral Full-Length, 2012

Official Site

NOVEMBER 17 (USA)

A cool album of heavy industrial thrash in the best tradition of Ministry's "Psalm 69"; the difference is that these guys seldom introduce more dynamic sections, and their music stays mostly in the mid-tempos. The sound here is more sterile clinging more to the industrial side, but the harsh riffs will keep satisfied the fans of the genre on all counts. The good thing is that, unlike Minsitry and other simlar industrial acts, you won't find any pure abstract experiments in industrial: all songs feature the guitar sound with the last track being a pleasant take on more aggressive faster thrashing.

Trust No One Full-Length, 1998

NOVERIA (ITALY)

This is modern power/speed/thrash which has the edge and all; only if it didn't sound so familiar sticking too much to the old 90's speed/power metal formulas. So expect fast impetuous rhythms of the "eagle fly free" variety spiced with the odd more technical groovism ("Paralysis"), or with the more brutal thrashterpiece ("Ashes"). In the 2nd half the music becomes more intriguing and more aggressive thrash entering the scene full-time the exception being the more romantically-inclined semi-ballad "Fallen from Grace". The vocalist is clearly an asset with his emotional clean tone which covers several ranges with unflinching dexterity.

Risen Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NOW IT'S DARK (GERMANY)

A German trio who specialize in proto-modern power/thrash trying to keep a balance between the old and new trends. The final result isn't very even seeing the guys pulling quite a few tricks out of their hat to stay afloat: funk, folk motifs, ballads, alternative, etc. "Trilogy Of War" is a 17-min bluesy/balladic oddity which is a total waste, and after it some may just switch their players off enormously disappointed. The closing "Rain In The Mountains" is a surprisingly stylish technical piece which blends flamenco motifs with harsh cutting guitars, but it comes too late to "attend" the belated show which at least offers cool soulful clean vocals.

Now It's Dark Full-length, 1996

NOWEN (FINLAND)

Based on the "Cursed Or Blessed" demo: this band comes up with a cool blend of thrash and death metal, more on the modern side (think the Swedish scene), graced by nice melodic guitars. The tempo is energetic, without being too aggressive; "Cursed Or Blessed" is an ambitious progressive track which inserts atmospheric gothic elements along with the melodic death/thrash riffs and the sparce black metal-ish hyper-blasts.

The EP is not too far stylistically from the demo, providing another blend of thrash and death metal. The tempo is fast and energetic with occasional deviations into slower waters ("Breaking Point"). The progressive tendencies are not developed further, except on "Where Hell Begins", which partially reminds of them in the middle, and "With Pain" which could have been appealing, if it hadn't clung too much towards the Swedish school.

"Nothing But Hate" sticks to the same pattern of both intense and melodic thrash/death metal which nicely alternates between speedy galloping riffs and straight aggressive death-laced ones, with the odd "excursion" into direct retro thrash ("After the Suicide"). On the opposite pole is the long progressive closer "From Time To Eternity", a cool melodic instrumental piece with a touch of a gothic melancholy slowing down with dreamy balladic passages.
"Essence of Fear" is another staple for the band work with more emphasis on thrash again. The band mosh on with enthusiasm adding the more brutal deathy leaning here and there. The leads are really good shining on the more death metal-laced moments (the excellent diverse opus "Crown Of Fallacy"). Still, thrash leads the pack with uncompromising headbangers like "Path Of Destruction", "Deadly Force", the maddening proto-death/thrasher "Acts Of Deceit", followed closely by more clever, technical exercises: "The Honor", and especially the engaging progressive closing title-track, a multi-faceted composition which moshes with passion surrounded by a couple of beautiful, lyrical deviations and standout guitar work.
"Peace with Death" is another hard thrashing opus notching it up in the aggression scale with a few more death metal-laced cuts (the aptly-titled "In Death We Shine") the latter still playig a second fiddle to the lashing thrasherisms which take very ambitious proportions on the 8-min saga "Peace With Death", and are nicely embedded into the atmospheric tapestries on the final "Nothing To Forgive" which also feature some very tasteful melodic leads.

Cursed Or Blessed Demo, 2002
Where Hell Begins EP, 2005
Nothing But Hate Full-length, 2010
Essence of Fear Full-length, 2012
Peace with Death Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

NOWRONG (BRAZIL)

Based on the full-length, this band pull out classic speed/thrash which is more on the speed metal side reminiscent of acts like the Germans Tyrant, Savage Grace, and Attacker. The most aggressive moments are those where some aggro-rhythms sneak in ("Taste the Hate"), but they also grow into something more classic-sounding at some stage. Sinister doomy sounds arrive with "The Watcher's Agony" which is a curious stomper with a hypnotic main motif. "The Morals" is faster and more technical, but this doesn't quite arouse the band for some more brutal "exploits"; they return to their mellower roots later on, the big surprise near the end being the more technical escapades on the excellent "Frenesy". The singer is a cool throat with attached croons similar to the ones of Blase Bailey, but better and more melodic.

Lady Lee EP, 2010
Nothing to Say EP, 2012
Nowrong EP, 2013
Prognostic of a Great Disaster Full-length, 2014

Official Site

NOX NOCTIS (RUSSIA)

Old school black/thrash, coming as a mix between Darkthrone and early Bathory; the music is energetic with the prototypical buzzy guitar sound involved as well, and the vicious mean Khold-like vocals. Certainly, there are quite a few blast-beats as well as a couple of stomping Celtic Frost-influenced passages. "Svita u Trona" is an effective sinister doomy sleeper in the vein of Khold and Barathrum, and the last song is a cover version of Darkthrone's "Under a Funeral Moon" from the Norwegians' 1993 album of the same title.

666 Seconds of Raw Black Dirt Demo, 2008
Iskuplenie Demo, 2009

NOXIM AND THE SHAPERS OF FALSEHOOD (USA)

This is a one-man show, the name Geoffrey Mixon (check his family name backwards), and he makes himself heard with a portion of the good old school thrash which can be at times direct and bashing ("Without Form and Void"), at others can engage the listener in a more progressive listen (the eventful progressive thrash "opera" "Two Shall Rise"). The guy overdoes it a bit on the 10.5-min opus "Of Silence and Warfare", but thumbs up for him for the excellent short virtuoso instrumental "Clarity at the Edge of Oblivion" which is exemplary speedy shred lasting for nearly 3-min. The remaining pieces are a bit overlong to these ears trying to show their creator in a more serious progressive light, but his more immediate side kind of suits him better despite some really captivating melodic tunes on those more elaborate compositions.

Nothing Is Sacred Full-Length, 2014

Official Site

NOXIOUS (USA)

Noisy, amateurish thrash with shades of crossover with very buzzy guitars and messy semi-whispered vocals; a few stylish attempts at melody have been made, but the awful sound quality ruins everything. "Nuclear Death (Who Wins?)" dangerously tumbles towards the proto-death field, but on the other hand tracks like "Round And Round Polka" are just frivolous punk pieces. There's a certain number of scattered intros and outros as though this had been intended as a compilation of some sorts, and those are the tracks which contain the best, most musical, moments.

The Morbid, The Merrier Demo, 1986

NROCINU (MALAYSIA)

Based on the full-length, this band offers atmospheric modern thrash which has both edge and tenderness shown in equal dozes, with emphasis on the guitar work from which the leads are particularly good. Catchy choruses grace almost every song as well as casual more stylish semi-technical ("Luahan") leanings. "Merdeka" is a nice speedy number, but the rest is comfortable enough to develop in mid-pace although the numerous diverse melodic hooks still make it an engaging listen. "The Fandago Of Life" near the end brings "the fandago of life" with lashing fast riffs, too, but the very end is clearly disappointing comprising two not very good ballads, one of them titled "Drakula" (the closer) which throw a "shadow" over this otherwise not bad release.

Langkah Mulaan EP, 2004
Keamanan Full-length, 2008

My Space

NU FUEL (UKRAINE)

Modern thrash with a few more aggressive death metal moments; the tempo changes from one song to another, but the dominant tone is the groovy mid-paced one, and consequently this effort falls into the pedestrian unimpressive category.

Voina za Benzin (Petrol War) EP, 2010

NUCFLASH (ARGENTINA)

This is abrasive speed/thrash which tries to give its fair share to both the modern and the classic school clinging more towards the latter. As a result we have quite a few dynamic moments: the merry galloping riffs on "Perpetual Nightmare" which is an otherwise clever, progressive composition; the more intense thrashy approach on the closing "In The Name Of Lucifer" which wraps it up in a cool energetic manner. The vocalist may be considered a drawback with his dispassionate semi-shouty delivery.

Spreading The Virus EP, 2011

Official Site

NUCKIN' FUTS (SPAIN)

Based on the full-length, these Spanish "fuckin' nuts" deliver a brisk potent blend of modern and classic thrash which comes with a less overt technical edge ("Predators", "Slavery" the latter coming with a cool lyrical balladic interlude) which is a "spice" among the dominant fast ripping numbers ("Join The Butcher") those still on the more intelligent side. There's no mosh lost here the raging riffage carrying on till the end accompanied by good high-strung shouty semi-clean vocals.

Evilution EP, 2013
Slavery Full-length, 2014

Official Site

NUCLEADOR (BRAZIL)

Another retro thrash resurrector from Brazil, again sounding quite good; this is fast stuff with a couple of more technical leanings, reminiscent of Anger as Art: check out the excellent "Zombeer Fest". The songs are short, but the nice guitar work and the energetic delivery make them a fairly satisfying listen the whole time; this is how a good dress rehearsal for a capable full-length should sound.

Zombeers Infest EP, 2008

Official Site

NUCLEAR (CHILE)

Based on the debut, this band come up with excellent energetic thrash of the old school recalling quite a few of the old heroes in a great way: Vio-Lence, Slayer, Forbidden, etc. Although the dominant tempo is fast-paced and intense, the guys prove they are equally as capable providing very good heavy, slower numbers ("Mind Insane", "7 Days"), along with the faster-paced material. First-rate exercises in speed/thrash will one find here: "Dolo", the raging "The Wind" which even touches death metal ala At The Gates on the more aggressive sections.
"10 Broken Codes" is a cool companion piece to the debut without adding anything new to the picture. This is energetic retro thrash, this time perhaps more Slayer-oriented, but hardly reaching a "Reign in Blood"-like intensity; it's more along the lines of the faster numbers from "South in Heaven" and "Seasons in the Abyss". The album thrashes hard blasting out short brisk bombs, some of which would also remind you of the thrash/crossover scene: "E-Faith". "Sadistic Method For Crime" nicely clings towards speed/thrash metal with cool melodic lines, but expect no mercy on the next "Engine Of Aggression" which fully justifies its title being the most aggressive track on the album.

"Jehovirus" is a faithful follow-up keeping the pace fairly energetic the whole time with brisk blitzkrieg thrashers ("Asphyxia", the proto-death shredder "Brutal Yet Precise", the raging Slayer-esque "World Depletion", the short ball of fury "Defleshed", etc.) flowing from all sides with rare "digressions" into slower pounding waters ("Acts Of Depravity"). The guys don't disappoint playing in an utmost intense manner with forceful intelligible vocals ala Tom Araya added to the aggressive music.

The "Apatrida" EP is more of the same, energetic old school thrash sustained in a solid fast pace with a decisive crossover fibre ("Chaos Is My Life") on the shorter material and again a shade of Slayer ("Apatrida") on the more aggressive parts.

"Formula for Anarchy" is another "formula" of bashing old school thrash in the Slayer vein the vocal delivery now resembling Tom Araya quite a bit. The hardcore-ish barrage is interrupted by more stylish semi-technical passages ("Offender"), but still those moments are too far in-between for one to listen with more care. "Corporate Corruption" is a more elaborate composition, but the rest of the tracks are short explosions of fury seldom lasting over the 3-min mark. The band were known earlier as Escoria when they only managed one solitary demo in 1997.

Heaven Denied Full-length, 2006
10 Broken Codes Full-length, 2008
Jehovirus Full-length, 2010
Apatrida EP, 2012
Formula for Anarchy Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NUCLEAR ABOMINATION (FRANCE)

Based on the "Nuclear'n'Fucking Roll" demo, which title may make some think that it's just a re-recording of the debut one (but is not), this Greek duo specializes in energetic classic speed/thrash metal in the spirit of the Portuguese Alastor and Pile Driver's "Stay Ugly". The guys "fuck as they thrash", like the title of one of the songs featured suggests, seldom slowing down paying tribute to one of the early slassics of speed metal: Sortilege's "Sortilege", the cover kind of ruined by the bad forced death metal vocals although the infectious melodic hooks of the French veterans are quite well captured. The guys take an active part in the underground metal movement in their homeland, mostly playing in black and thrash metal acts, including another one of their own making: Perversifier, where reportedly the style is more black metal-inclined.

Nuclear'n'Roll Demo, 2008
Nuclear'n'Fucking Roll Demo, 2010

My Space

NUCLEAR AGGRESSOR (ITALY)

Based on the "Osterreichisches KustenThrash" split with their compatriots Gravelead, this band deliver brutal early Sadus-esque thrash/proto-death the guys occasionally showing mercy here and there with the inclusion of some slower deviations, but generally this is pretty intense fast-paced stuff with vicious semi-death metal vocals of the shouty type. The last track is a live recording and it betrays the crisp sound quality of the preceding two numbers. Some of the band members are also active with the thrash/black metal formation Violent Assault.
"Condemned to Rot" is a wild beast with more polished riffs, but with the same aggressive attitude. The guys lash with no remorse reaching the hyper-speed of the Japanese Fastkill with ease relaxing at times with the more moderate speed metal reference ("After the Blaze"). The attack is admirable all over the riffs lashing from all sides hitting like whips, showing a bit of mercy at the end on the longer stomper "The Grave Awaits" which exits the scene with a nice doomy bass-driven outro. The dedication to speed and the old school is fairly respectable, and the band should be given credit for that.
"Slow Dismemberment" doesn't deviate from the path chosen the band thrashig their souls out shooting fast "bullets" like "Domination Of The Sheep" and "Annihilation Of Life" with no remorse. The dramatism becomes bigger on a couple of slower numbers ("Death To The Hangman") with purer speed metal ("Cardiaco Acciaio") added for good measure, too. Still, this remains an aggressive offering the closing "My Last Pulsation" showing how the band's more moderate side with even a balladic section inserted accompanied by surprisingly lyrical clean vocals (could be another vocalist?).

Violent Thrashing Rage Demo, 2010
Human Pulverizer EP, 2010
Blasphemic Aggressor Split, 2012
Osterreichisches KustenThrash Split, 2012
Condemned to Rot Full-Length, 2013
Slow Dismemberment Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

NUCLEAR ASSAULT (USA)

A legendary thrash/crossover band; they literally wrote the rules of the genre with their works of the 80's with the unique high vocals of John Connelly and the fast furious thrashing infused with a great sense of melody. The band entered the 90's determined to vary things a bit, and on "Out Of Order" we have a slower, heavier sound with longer tracks and attempts at a more technical play. This album wasn't met very warmly met by the audience as it was quite a departure from the band's distinctive sound. "Something Wicked" was a bit better with more emphasis on thrash this time, but failed to generate a very big interest and soon after that Nuclear Assault were no more.
Their comeback album in 2005 is probably the weakest attempt made by an old veteran to be back in the game; it's close to the style of "Out Of Order", but the guitar work is simply bad with dull, repetitive riffs and boring, samey tracks having almost nothing in common with the band's 80's works. Of course it's early to cross the band off the list, but there's a lot to be done in order for things to be put back on track.

The "Pounder" EP: wow, the band have decided to finally show up their heads above ground after the deplorable flop which their last effort was. No expectations whatsoever, needless to say, and there shouldn't be any... And this is when the fan will find each of these 4 cuts sheer classic delights. The title-track is a dynamic speed/thrasher with a raw crossover edge, and "Lies" is even faster, vintage old school thrash/crossover to the bone. No slouchers later as the remaining two pieces are very similar in spirit "Died In Your Arms" deviating from the righteous path a bit with its more sprawling balladic "infatuation" still sounding interesting showing the guys preparing for a much better entry into the new millennium's thrashy arsenal.

Brain Death EP, 1986
Game Over Full-length, 1986
The Plague EP, 1987
Fight To Be Free EP, 1988
Good Times Bad Times EP, 1988
Survive Full-length, 1988
Handle With Care Full-length, 1989
Out Of Order Full-length, 1991
Something Wicked Full-length, 1993
Live promo EP, 2003
Third World Genocide Full-length, 2005
Pounder EP, 2015

My Space

NUCLEAR ATTACK (COLOMBIA)

Retro speed/thrash metal done with confidence; look no further than the Angel Dust debut. The songs are speedy with a slightly more melodic edge and short shouty choruses, but thrashers like "Warriors of Steel", which "flirts" with a couple of tunes from the Metallica debut, and the explosive speed/thrash on "Nuclear Attack" will bang your head in a major way.

Metal Force Demo, 2009

NUCLEAR CHAOS (MEXICO)

\\\\\\\\f0 Based on the debut: modern melodic thrash metal with touches of metalcore; very good leads can be heard all over which remain the highlight. The pace is predominantly fast, but the metalcore breaks are quite frequent, too, although not to the point of annoyance. The guitars have the necessary edge smelling the Gothenburg school at times; and yes: the clean vocal insertions are here as well, of course.

No Mercy, No Forgiveness Full-Length, 2010
Ruins of the Future Full-length, 2011
Wacken Edition EP, 2011
Absolution Full-length, 2013
Ruins of the Future EP, 2015

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NUCLEAR CRUCIFIXION (USA)

Both demos display cool aggressive thrash with stylish semi-technical guitar work reminiscent of Torture's "Storm Alert". The music is not all-out speed all the time; there are slower heavier moments which alternate with fast proto-death ones. It frequently changes pace creating the impression that something really complex is going on, but as a matter of fact this is well executed thrash of a more conventional nature except for a few times when the guys come up with more original ideas.

Killing Ourselves to Live Demo, 1987
Torture Of Humanty Demo, 1988

Fan Site

NUCLEAR DECIMATION (BRAZIL)

Based on the "Headbangers Attack" demo, this band really pull out a "headbanging attack" which is close to the German school (Necronomicon, Darkness) ornated with some ephemeral death metal aesthetics ("Nightmare Storm"). The guys vary the tempos helping themselves with both an inspired bass and lead performance. Surely there'll be a lot of "Sex, Metal & Beer!" like the final track suggests, and indeed under the influence of that song's mellower crossover approach (check out the great lead section on this one) a lot of fluids may leak, both in and out...

Metal Up Your Ass! Demo, 2009
Headbangers Attack Demo, 2011

Youtube

NUCLEAR DETONATION (ITALY)

This is laid-back classic power/speed/thrash which doesn't quite reflect the band name. The guys rely on melody quite a bit which shouldn't be a complaint since the great leads on "A.T.A. (Another Thrash Attack)" will make anyone happy in no time. On the other hand, we have the 8-min long uneventful opus "Living Dead" alongside other mild pieces which are compensated at the end with the raging "Mental Prison" and the frolic closing speedster "Nuclear Detonation". The vocals are of the shouty semi-clean type and take quite a bit of space.

Living Dead, Sons of the Lobotomy Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NUCLEAR DEVASTATION (HOLLAND)

The demo: noisy abrasive thrash/crossover which too modern production takes too much from the guitars' edge, but on the other hand boosts the attached semi-shouty singer's performance. Still, the guys bash with passion producing intense sounds greatly helped by the brutal cover of the hardcore legends Heresy's "Genocide".
The full-length is even noisier the band producing their expected brand of chaotic, pristine bash without fail. The violent cannonade has a more charming face, like the more stylish semi-technical "Baptised In Hellfire", or the dissonant deviations on "Rotting In Guilt". The shorter material, however, is pure primal aggression the last three pieces forming a hard-to-digest wall of chaotic noise bordering on The Berzerker-like "atrocities".

Vision Of Fear Demo, 2012
Inferno Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

NUCLEAR DISASTER (PARAGUAY)

3 songs of retro thrash ala Sacrifice with shades of the Bay-Area; the music is up-tempo with sharp guitar work and convincing semi-hardcore vocals ala M.S. "Scruff" Lewty (Hellbastard). Some of the band members are busier with the heavy metal rockers 220 Voltios.

Thrashers Attack Demo, 2009

Official Site

NUCLEAR FROST (BRAZIL)

A fast blitzkrieg mix of thrash, black and crust in the form of short (1-2min) tracks topped by very brutal low death metal vocals. "Nuclear Winter Gloom", which is whole 3-min long (!), is slower with a good early Celtic Frost-esque vibe, which surprisingly brings the "winds of change" with it, influencing a couple of songs after it, decreasing the speed to an extent. The bashing eventually returns for the exiting trio of numbers which thrash out in a fast uncompromising manner with a brave hardcore attitude.

Nuclear Winter Gloom Full-length, 2011

Official Site

NUCLEAR HELL (BRAZIL)

This band is a side-project of the guys from Chakal. The music on this 2-song demo is a tad more melodic, and with more technical guitar work, and overall better: there are intriguing guitar lines which can't be found on the Chakal efforts. "Evil Ghost" is a direct nod to early Destruction, but again with a more technical edge. This act could definitely have had a future, even perhaps brighter than the one of the father band.

Evil Ghost Demo, 1988

NUCLEAR HOLOCAUST (USA)

This is raw primal stuff which is as much thrash as it is hardcore and proto-death metal. In other words, we have fast violent riffs interrupted by a few slamming sections (check out "Mad Slammer"). "Society Sucks" makes sense being a 2-min rager, but the rest is ultimately obstructed by the very muddy sound quality from which only the authoritative shouty hardcore vocalist ala Kurt Brecht (D.R.I.) comes out unscathed.

Vicious Slaughter Demo, 1986

NUCLEAR INFANTRY (USA)

Intense classic thrash/death/black metal with less expected technical decorations supported by vicious husky black metal vocals. The music rips and cuts the guys inserting the odd blast-beat whenever they find the opportunity to do so although their presence is hardly necessary the delivery being constantly aggressive the stylish melodic leads the only relief. This is professionally executed stuff with a lot of musical merits and will hopefuly be followed by a longer format not far from now. Some of the band members concentrate more on their black metal side with Doomkryer.

Apocalyptic Misanthropy Demo, 2011

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NUCLEAR OMNICIDE (FINLAND)

Based on the full-length, these Finns offer intense choppy retro thrash which can be quite fast with touches of proto-death which bring the intensity to the extremes at times: check out the violent mosher "Dedicating Your Life for Nothing", hyper-thrash at its finest. Things seldom get under control and short exploders like "Lethal Obsession" will sprain your neck. "Worthless" is hardly "worthless" being another brutal ripper the only relief on this merciless downpour being the short proto-groover "Koodinimi Koskenkorva". The title-track at the end is a commendable way to finish the album with an eventful display of thrashiness lasting for 7.5-min. This is a refreshing, but also an exhausting, listen which shows a young talented act ready to do a major damage on a worldwide scale.

Unleash Yourself EP, 2012
The Presence of Evil Full-length, 2013
Bringers of Disease EP, 2014
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NUCLEAR REIGN (IRELAND)

These Dublineers pull out good old school thrash metal with slightly underwhelming semi-hardcore vocals, close to the ones of M.S. "Scruff" Lewty (Hellbastard). The music alternates between fast-paced and slower tracks, both tendencies mixed on the highlight "M.A.D." although the closing speed/thrasher "Death Of A Dreamer" isn't too far behind.

Mutually Assured Destruction Demo, 2007

My Space

NUCLEAR SALVATION (SWEDEN)

The debut: dry modern thrash sustained in an energetic pace not far from the efforts of Dew-Scented and early The Haunted. "Rise" is a cool way to complicate the musical landscape a bit with more elaborate arrangements which take away from the dynamics, but the guys have no problems recapturing it on the subsequent material the latter coming with a stronger abrasive, almost industrial, edge. "Toxic Injection" is a cool exercise in both technicality and melody, the highlight on the album which finishes with the aggressive blitzkrieger "Ruins Of Reality". The singer is a typical death metal shouter giving a deeper, lower-tuned tone to his rending voice.
"Ruins of Reality" is a similar effort with a sterile sound which surprisingly echoes the 80's scene (the pounding Slayer-esque "Worldwide Chaos") here and there, and when "When the Kingdom Hall Burns" comes thrashing with full semi-technical force in the 2nd half the listener will have no choice but start taking the music more seriously. Expect a well settled mid-tempo "idyll" as a finishing touch and it's good that the closer "Hate Anthem" at least comes with more vigorous riffs to liven up the situation which was surely going towards the negative scale. Still, this effort is a better achievement than the preceding album with its more versatile approach and the wider display of musicianship.

The Beginning of the End Full-Length, 2011
Ruins of Reality Full-Length, 2013

Youtube

NUCLEAR SIMPHONY (ITALY)

If you've noticed, the band's name is "Simphony", not "Symphony": not that it matters at all (could probably mean something in Italian!? Kidding, of course). Their only effort is excellent progressive/technical thrash recalling the Swiss Apocalypse's debut and Mandator's "Perfect Progeny". The tempo is quite energetic with brisk sharp riffs and nice melodic guitar lines. There's a nice short, acoustic ballad "Cry", which starkly contrasts with the remaining much more aggressive material, as well as one short lead instrumental: "Rhapsody of Sadness", which is another very good touch. The songs are within the 5-6min range topped by good semi-clean high vocals.

Lost in Wonderland Full-length, 1989

NUCLEAR TEST (UKRAINE)

Abrasive proto-modern thrash metal recalling mid-period Accuser; this is heavy mid-paced music with the odd "excursion" into more vigorous headbanging thrash ("Biohazard", the excellent pure exercise in classic Slayer-esque thrash "Possessed"), with forceful gruff death metal vocals.

Biohazard Demo, 2010

Official Site

NUCLEAR TORMENT (SWEDEN)

Based on the 2-song "Emo Headshot" demo, this young trio plays good vigorous Bay-Area speed/thrash metal with sharp speedy riffs evolving around a more complex semi-technical base (think Forbidden, Testament). Both songs are energetic fast exercises in tight musicianship with forceful semi-clean, mostly declamatory, vocals boosted by a very good sound quality.
The "8 Bit Death" EP is another 3 songs of the same vigorous retro thrash with a nice Bay-Area edge providing a good headbanging atmosphere which switches onto more aggressive proto-death on the short 1.5-min cut "Bruce, The Grave Robbing Brown Bear".

Thrash It Up Demo, 2010
Emo Headshot Demo, 2010
8 Bit Death EP, 2011

Official Site

NUCLEAR WARFARE (GERMANY)

Very competent 80's Germanic thrash (the 1st two full-lengths) in the Kreator-vein: aggressive, energetic and done with conviction; "Royal Fortune" slows down a bit ("Pirates", "Kill") introducing stomping, heavy, but equally as effective, riffs bringing the sound close to the Slayer late-80's period.
"Just Fucking Thrash": it's "just fucking thrash" here, like the album-title sums it up so well. The band don't betray their old school nature and play with various rhythms and some cool melodies (the excellent title-track which is also a major speedster). Shades of more recent Sodom can easily be detected including in the form of a few party joke songs sung in German ("Ich Mag Bier"). "Atomic Disaster" is explosive headbanging thrash, but the guys mix things up and "The Sniper Strikes Again", for example, is a dramatic mid-pacer. The only filler here would be the bland closer "Circle of Thirst" which is an optimistic heavy rocker not contributing much to the "just fucking thrash" attitude.
"Empowered by Hate" is another ripping "beast" the guys moshing relentlessly throwing in the casual joke crossover track ("Mata Com Faca") as well as the odd heavy stomper ("Fear"), but the focus is clearly on the aggressive outbursts like "Warlust" and the admirable 7-min shredfest "Nuclear Warfare". In other words, "thrash to the bone", like the title of the closing cut sums up so well.

War Is Unleashed Full-length, 2004
We Come In Peace Full-length, 2006
Royal Fortune EP, 2007
God of Aggression Full-length, 2010
Just Fucking Thrash Full-length, 2014
Empowered by Hate Full-length, 2017

Official Site

NUCLEAR WASTELAND (USA)

Based on the "Sacrifice of the Blessed" demo, this act plays aggressive thrash/black metal with horrifying screamy vocals of the black metal school. The music is very fast touching early Kreator and the Brazilians Sarcofago and Vulcano, but there's almost no blast-beating here. The guys concentrate on pure black metal with their other formation Black Chariot.

The debut demo is 3 songs of the same stuff, fast uncompromising black/thrash this time coming with a very primal noisy sound quality which still leaves some room for the guitars to do the damage. Those guitars never leave the up-pace bashing viciously topped by the not very decipherable raven-like vocals.

Gasmask Future Demo, 2007
Sacrifice of the Blessed Demo, 2010
The Brink of Extinction Full-Length, 2011

Official Site

NUCLEATOR (GERMANY)

A 5-song EP of energetic retro thrash metal mixing the early German school with more atmospheric slower sections; after the all-out mosher in the beginning "Endless Nightmare" the sound gets slower with the aforementioned slower passages settling in bringing the tempo to mid and below at times which can be a pull back to some with the initial aggression completely disappeared by the arrival of the moody semi-doomy closer "Hours Of War".
The full-length: 3 of the songs from the demo are featured on this roler-coaster which doesn't start in the most energetic way with the slowest track from the demo "Hours of War". But then comes "Napalm", another cut from the demo, and things get back to normal. The following material is diverse both sides mixed in almost equal dozes throughout, the faster side now recalling Slayer ("Generation Kill"; the brutal closer "Operation Termination" which even blast-beats for a while near the end). The leads are quite good the cleaner production giving them a nice semi-screamy edge. The singer is comprehensive although his low-tuned shouty death metal tember may be considered too aggressive by some.

Hours of War EP, 2009
Home Is Where War Is Full-length, 2012

Official Site

NUCTEMERON (POLAND)

Based on the "Babyhood of Hell" demo, this is raw amateurish thrash/proto-death metal sounding like a more brutal and vicious version of early Messiah.

Babyhood of Hell Demo, 1987
Festung Breslau Demo, 1988

NUEAIREA (USA)

This obscure trio came out in the midst of the most non-classic metal years, but their heavy doom-laden sound fitted well into the overall pessimistic picture even adhering to cool classic elements. "Systems" is a pounding opener with ultra-heavy riffs and cool clean mid-levelled vocals. Then comes "Nevermore" which is a somewhat pointless tender acoustic ballad coming after just one hard-hitting munber. The steam-rolling destruction carries on as though the ballad never happened, with "Comparisons Of Rage" which is a doomy crusher in the spirit of the Nevermore debut (after all it has to compensate for the ballad of the same name which offered nothing like Nevermore). "Red Stained Reflections" is a proto-modern piece with heavy guitars strongly bordering on doom, and the more dynamic "Evidence" comes as a revelation right after although it sticks to the ballad in the much more sleepy 2nd half. Another melodic balladic track ("Inverse Insomnia") is perhaps too much on an album like this, this one being spacey and ambient with stylish abstract "out there" leads. At "the last minute" arrives "The Last Minute" to offer more energetic power/thrash, but this is probably a leftover from a bigger number lasting for a bit more than 2-min. To throw a bridge between the classic and modern trends in 1995 was next to impossible although kudos should be paid to the guys for trying, and with more speed and intensity added they might have woken up some of the "sleeping giants" (Twisted Sister for sure!).

Alter The Regular Full-length, 1995

NUESTROS DERECHOS (HOLLAND)

A good young band who have chosen the retro thrash metal path to follow; this is actually a speed/thrash mixture recalling Paradox, Necronomicon and Mandator. The music is fast, but one could catch stylish technical hooks here and there; a promising beginning for one of the youngest hopes of Dutch thrash metal.
"Struggling with the Dark" sounds like pure modern thrash for most of the time and is definitely underwhelming, lacking the spontaneity and the more immediate nature of the demos. The guitar work is by all means proficient, more polished, compared to the earlier efforts, but the speed and aggression have been sacrificed quite a bit: "Deimos" is a tender semi-ballad and it's good that the guys wake up afterwards for the excellent speed/thrasher "Nazgul" which remains the best song; "Insomnia", which follows suit, is a typical product of the modern thrash metal movement, and the closer "Darkest Before Dawn" is another peaceful piece, this time an instrumental. There are only 6 actual songs (excluding the closer), but this is probably a good thing considering the modern orientation taken by the band.

"Adrift" is competently done, but the sound is again modern-ish, and despite the considerable amount of energy put into the recording this effort would not impress much. The melodic leanings have been increased quite a bit, both in the riff and lead sector, seldom interrupted by more brutal outbursts (the death metal cut "Bockereyders"). Casual more technical moments (the diverse headbanger "Schizophrenia"; the hectic closer "Trash Vortex") can be caught, and "The Great Disruption" is a heavier, doomier cut, but generally the guys can't be bothered with too many shifts from their predictable, albeit mildly entertaining, approach too much.

Demo 2003 Demo, 2003
Split 'Em All Split album, 2005
Struggling with the Dark Full-length, 2008
Adrift Full-length, 2011

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NUEVO PODER (ARGENTINA)

Based on "Power Trio", this band plays prototypical modern thrash/death metal, more towards the less intense dark side with melodic mid-tempo guitars and gruff brutal vocals. The leads score high every time being short and melodic with a couple of technical hooks. "Slave New World" at the end is a Sepultura cover from "Chaos AD".

Nuevo Poder EP, 2006
Vivo Full-length, 2007
Power Trio Full-length, 2008

Official Site

NUISANCE (USA)

Based on "In My Eyes": crossover/thrash with sudden fast outbreaks in the Slayer-vein; not bad, staying firm to the old school cause except for the sole flirtation with groove "Make Me Laugh" and occasionally offering nice guitar work (mostly in the lead department). "Leper Mosh" goes beyond Slayer and provides brutal grinding bash for a while partially cancelled by again the short, but cool leads. On the other extreme we have the soft, but speedy "Friction" and the jumpy funky "Windburn".
The demo is a blisterting display of primal of American speed/thrash the opener "Mind Maze" combining Helstar and Agent Steel in one seamless melee which will make you jump around like demented. "Dizzy Bitch" is a more relaxed speed metal cut, but "Sociaety" is a wild speed/thrasher with sharp lashing guitars and the hellish emotional high-strung vocals which are very close to being the highlight on this excellent inspired beginning for the band who never managed to top it up.

Demo Demo, 1988
In My Eyes Full-length, 1993
Swim Full-length, 1996
Fullscale 4.15 EP, 2000

NUKE (USA)

This new formation pull out classic speed/thrash which is considerably marred by a very sloppy sound quality which makes the guitars hiss in a very pristine way. Regardless of the constant noise one should be able to enjoy the perennial moshers "Marching Undead" and "Rip Ride", and the epic galloper "Dead Space". "The Queen" is a more stripped-down speedster ala the Swedes Cranium, and "Flame of Desire" emphasizes on the gallop again, before the closer "Murder Troops" wraps it on with a portion of vitriolic fast-paced, but also epic-tinged, guitars. The singer is a hoarse semi-shouter whose antics also suffer from the awful production. Some of the band members also play in the black/death/thrash metallers Shitfucker, and another speed metal formation, Whipstriker.

Nuke Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

NUKEM (USA)

The drum magician Norm Leggio (Psychotic Waltz, End Amen, Teabag, etc.) is here leading a pack who pay tribute to the old school with this energetic speed/thrashing melee which doesn't leave the 80's American power metal heritage too far behind with a couple of bustling galloping cuts ("BloodSeeker"), not to mention the nod to Saxon and all things NWOBHM which is "T.V. Crimes". However, it's headbangwers like the death-laced "Lethal Injection" and "WarWolf" which count here making this effort the energetic roller-coaster it deserves to be the vocal support coming in the form of intense semi-clean, dramatic vocals.

The Unholy Trinity Full-Length, 2016

NUKLEAR INFEKTION (PORTUGAL)

This act specializes in ripping old school thrash/death wich is fast and lashing in a way not far removed from early Merciless and The Germans Ravage. So expect a few blasts along the way assisting the hyper-energetic riffs which are boosted to the point of screaming taking the whole space at times for the sake of the other instruments, and the singer whose quarrelsome shouty antics are passable, but hardly a very cool addition. This is a really admirable dedication to speed which never drops the ball even for a split second coming up with one of the most furious closers of recent years "The Dark Passenger": devastating thrash with an almost falling-apart delivery: the speed of light has been reached!

Weapons of Massive Genocide EP, 2012

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NULL'o'ZERO (GREECE)

Based on the full-length, this outfit indulge in potent classic power/thrash which immediately impresses with the very good powerful clean vocals. The music comes with a seeming progressive, also epic, flair the latter not making too much room for many fast-paced histrionics ("Inshame" is a handsome exception, a very cool energetic semi-technicaller). Nevermind, the heavy volcanic riffs suffice to make this a pleasing experience with memories of Iced Earth, Omen, and early Meliah Rage.

Under Blood Red Sky EP, 2012
The Enemy Within Full-length, 2015

Official Site

NULL AND VOID (USA)

This not very known trio offer cool thrash with heavy dark guitars and gruff death metal vocals. The guys cover all tempos sticking to the mid-pace more, spicing things up with the casual shade of hardcore ("Surf Nazis"). "No Funds for You" at the end is all-out thrash ala Sacred Reich's "Ignorance", good headbanging fun with a shouty chorus.

Buried Alive Demo, 1989

NULLSAKE (USA)

A three piece-demo of cool technical instrumental thrash of a more eclectic nature, more along the lines of Electro Quarterstaff and Vomitron, rather than Mastery.

Demo Demo, 2002

Official Site

NUM SKULL (USA)

"Ritually Abused" is a strong beginning with its aggressive, proto-death sound and vicious, slightly overdone vocals (which might pull back the unprepared a bit). The album begins in an uncompromising brutal manner joining the death metal legions with "Death and Innocence", but the rest is aggressive thrash which slows down only on "Off With Your head" which is a heavy mid-paced number, at least the first part, and on the album closer "Murder by the Minister": an up-tempo speed/thrasher in the Destructor-vein. This not very known act have done a job similar to Incubus on their debut, but their effort has been made 1 year earlier, and could pass for the first real thrash/death metal hybrid.

"Future-Our Terror" tones down the brutality a little, and the music there isn't too far from Slayer's "Reign In Blood" (which I don't understand since the band have already created a unique sound of their own on the debut, and it worked well). Their last offering is full-fledged death metal with no relations to thrash.

Ritually Abused Full-length, 1988
Future-Our Terror Full-length, 1990
When Suffering Comes Full-length, 1996

Official Site

NUMBED (USA)

This is modern groovy thrash/post-thrash which is quite dynamic and diverse as evident from the not very predictable opener "Red Eagle". "Dirty War" is a wild headbanger with hard-hitting riffs galore, and things only become more interesting later, first with the explosive semi-technicaller "For Redemption", then with the pounding steam-roller "Pirates of the Damned". In the 2nd half the groove starts to remind of itself more often, but another clever semi-tecnical number ("Possessed") helps to restore the faith as well as the more brutal shredder "Deadly Receipt" near the end. The singer is a subdued death metal growler who unobtrusively assists the cool musical delivery.

Mind Full-Length, 2014

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NUMBNESS (BRAZIL)

The demo: an obscurity which doesn't really have any merits except for its unknown nature; this is energetic stuff "supported" by an awful sound quality which doesn't give the guitars any edge at all, but boosts the bass which is the star of the show (check out "No Hope": "no hope" for the other musicians to shine). The singer plainly shouts in a more intelligible semi-clean manner, and usually merges with the semi-amateurish skills of his colleagues.

"Going Back": the band are "back" on the scene after a lifetime of absence, and it's obvious from the get-go that they haven't wasted their time sleeping or watching porn, but have moved up the music scale unleashing decent retro speed/thrash which is both headbanging ("Urbanoids") and laid-back (the groovy rocker "LSD 25"). The more intense string of numbers towards the end raises the early Slayer flag high before the final "No Hope" wraps it on with a portion of more melodic galloping riffs. The harsh deathy singer is a detriment at this stage since the music isn't that brutal and his unmelodic inclusions are just laughable and off the mark.

Fancies to the Miserable Demo, 1991
Going Back Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NUMBNUTS (DENMARK)

Contrary to the dull (or dumb, if you like) name, this act manage to deliver decent modern thrash of the more laid-back, playful kind. There isn't much aggression to be encountered, but the songs flow smoothly emitting loads of catchy hooks and a few hard-hitting moments ("The Shorty Song") with a tinge of hardcore. The vocals are the staple angry, semi-shouty ones interrupted by the obligatory cleaner tone whenever needed.

Smokey The Salmon And The Horny Mermaids Of Detention Full-Length, 2011

Official Site

NUMEN (POLAND)

Based on the "The Venom of Life" demo, these folks specialize in fairly cool dynamic thrash/death of the old school merging the Swedish movement with the Floridian school in a sure-handed semi-technical manner. Bash and technicality seamlessly come blended on "The Indifference Is My Hangman" whereas "The Brain in the Chaos" has nuances from the progressive death metal movement (think late-period Death). "The Three Steps Through Life" is a brilliant "symphony" of time and tempo-changes, an all-instrumental piece with some great overlapping riff-patterns sustained in mid-pace mostly. The closing "Delightning in Light" is 3-min of handsome impetuous thrash which finishes this effort in a more upbeat, roller-coaster fashion. The vocals are on the gruff down-tuned death metal side and at times can be overshadowed by the better music.

Numen Demo, 1997
The Venom of Life Demo, 1998
Continuous Insatiable Full-length, 2004

Official Site

NUMIC (USA)

Based on "Self Inflicted Numbness", this act indulge in "self inflicted" post-thrash which at its best tries to reach the semi-progressive overtones of the mid-period Prong albums, but this doesn't happen too often since the approach is too sleepy for anyone to care much unless he/she is also a Tool fan the latter's sprawling progressive landcapes ably captured on a few songs including on the closing dreamer "No Memory".

Recrudescent Feed Full-length, 2005
One Above The Heretics Full-length, 2007
Self Inflicted Numbness Full-length, 2013

Official Site

NUOMAX (SPAIN)

This is mostly heavy/power metal with more intense thrashy sections neither of which crosses over the up-tempo. Still, "My Sweet Dead" is a very cool shredder which also replaces the excellent clean emotional vocals with harsher death metal-based ones. Marvellous leads rule on the progressive opus "The Sky", and more intense proto-groovy riffage sneaks in on the closing "One Last Shout" without ruining the pleasant atmosphere. The band were earlier known as the Natal Pride where the style was reportedly more aggressive and thrashier.

Changes Full-Length, 2016

Official Site

NYLITHIA (CANADA)

Modern metalcore-ish thrash (based on the EP) the main difference from the pack coming from the vocal duel (one very brutal, the other a bit more shrieky both belonging to the death metal camp), and the more intense death metal insertions. The guys try to keep an energetic tempo throughout, and for a "dessert" have given you a frantic 2-min interpretation of the main theme from the "Super Mario Bros." computer game at the end.
"Hyperthrash" offers the same modern thrashcore cacophony, maybe with a bit more melodic edge and with a stronger sense of industrial. The feeling that these tunes have been created to grace any computer game nowadays is quite pertinent although "Whips & Chainz" is a really fine complex shredder, and the title-track is a cool brutal cut with chaotic progressive undercurrents. Still, the majority of the songs are short catchy pieces with plenty of industrial gimmicks to please the gamers who may find their favourite soundtrack here, but by no means their favourite "hyperthrash".

Infector EP, 2008
Hyperthrash Full-Length, 2015

Official Site

NYTHRO (SPAIN)

5 songs of thrash/death metal, sometimes sounding quite classic, with a nod to the Floridian school ("Esnythrofrenia"), sometimes heavy and groovy ("Sed De Sangre") and much more modern sounding. Expect also mixtures of the two trends ("El Pijama De Madera").

Yo te Maldigo Demo, 2005

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