DEATH ANGEL - Thrast-tastic Tactics Of The Seasonably Unreasonable
by Martin Popoff
The Bay Area's most enigmatic and dimensioned act? Some might say Metallica win that hands-down. But then there's Death Angel, the scene's young, punked loose cannons, striking with an oddball hit called 'Bored'. Twenty years down the line, the band have been on and off, courted near tragedy and (confused) name changes, eccentric side-projects and curious comebacks, namely '04's The Art Of Dying, a compact and rushed record that in retrospect, set the stage for the band's magnificent yet equally combative and concentrated new record for harsh political times, Killing Season.
"I think the mission with this one," begins firecracker lead vocalist Mark Osegueda, "was that we just truly wanted to go out and really reestablish ourselves, to make people understand that we were the same band that created Act III and The Ultra-Violence, and take it to the next level - make people realize that we are a musical force that is valid. And to a certain degree, the bands that we like, the bands that we listen to that affect us deeply, that we think that their music is timeless, we tried to come out with a definitive thrash-meets-modern monster that is timeless in the same way (laughs)."
To that end, the band definitely benefited from a hook-up with producer Nick Raskulinecz, hot off his work for Rush, who came in and uncannily re-captured the organic fire of the band's first two albums, The Ultra-Violence and Frolic In The Park, while gussying up the actual sonics with a trebly crunchy punch that leaves the listener breathless and good an' well thrashed.
"We always just try to go for a little bit 'less' of what everybody else is doing," says Mark, addressing the potent production end of the equation. "And with thrash, it's the genre we've been in, and I know a lot of times even back then, people tend to go with a certain producer of the moment, whose name is synonymous with that genre. It happened back then with certain producers, and it's happening right now with certain producers. So we like to try to stay outside of that realm, and bring, you know, more than just your modern thrash sound. We're such fans of '80s metal and just rock production, so we tried to bring that to it."
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