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Product Details

GenreDeath Metal
Media formatCD
Media PackagingJewelcase
Available since 07.09.1998
Product code408646

Bolt Thrower needed four long years for the successor of „For Victory“, but waiting was worthwhile. The album „Mercenary“ offers pure Bolt Thrower and deserved having been chosen as Hard Rock album of the month on its release!

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As death bands go, Bolt Thrower doesn't get a lot of press, but in the UK they're pretty big, which stands to reason as they're from Coventry. To look at the cover and logo one might thing you'd be dealing with a Priest/Sabaton power metal or eighties thrash album, but you'd be wrong. Having never heard them before but knowing of them and a good rep, I found this CD supposedly used but looked like it had never been played or very little. I suspect the buyer was expecting more traditional metal, instead of the deathfest that resides in the binary codes.
Bolt Thrower were a punk hardcore style band at first, but with time honed their axes, tuned them down, and by "Mercenary", have developed a sound that goes down well with those who like bands who tread the blurry lines of a style of metal too categorized for its own good. I immediately appreciated the tone of the guitars, thick and doomy, reminiscent of "Arise"-era Sepultura, and the thrash influence of those legendary outfits who also showed just how closely related thrash and death ultimately are, usually the only difference being grunted vocals, like Slayer, Exodus or Sodom, to name a few. One the death side, you can also put Bolt Thrower in the Carcass/Vader vein, and be just as accurate.
Which means to say after all these comparisons is that "Mercenary", while not exactly creating anything unusual, are a reliably heavy chopping forge hammer of a band, no fancy frills, or excessive lead guitar wanking, solos being slower and melodic, a nice touch, heavy as any doom band and enjoyable, the lyrics of the album subject matter notwithstanding, which you have to read, as the grunt vocals are hard to understand, but that's death metal for

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