CD/DVD Review: Onslaught – Live At The Slaughterhouse

CD/DVD Review: Onslaught – Live At The Slaughterhouse
AFM Records
All Access Rating: A

Onslaught - Live At The
Slaughterhouse 2016
Presumably, Onslaught didn't actually perform at places where dead animals are processed into meat. Although a screaming abattoir might provide the horrifically ideal live atmosphere for catching a show from these veteran U.K. thrash-metal savages.

Presenting ample video and audio proof of life, the violent and energetic AFM Records release Live At The Slaughterhouse draws from two highly visceral, staggeringly brilliant gigs in Bristol and London to comprise a package that completely erases the memory of the Neil Turbin debacle of 2014 and smacks of Venom's blackened anger, while siphoning off gallons of Slayer's crazed intensity. Throwing around big, heavy hooks like brawny longshoreman even while thrashing about everywhere as if in the throes of the nastiest demonic possession, Onslaught blows the doors off their hinges here. Vocalist Sy Keeler rages with Satanic fury throughout, singing of "spitting blood in the face of God" as the rest of Onslaught explodes and engages in the predatory tempo shifts of a seething "Killing Peace." Furious charges "Chaos Is King" and "Let There Be Death" set a scorching pace, before the exotic wailing of "Children Of The Sand" signals the thrilling rise of a massive, cinematic epic that comes on like ... well, a surging sand storm gathering strength.

The propulsive, sulfuric boils, venomous tonality and diabolically clever leads emanating from the ferociously feral guitars of Nige Rockett and Leigh Chambers crack the whip on vigorous, blazing sonic rampages "The Sound Of Violence" and "Rest In Pieces," while "66 'Fucking' 6" rides a dark, ominous melody and the creepy music-box intro to "Destroyer Of Worlds" seems to perfectly build hair-raising anticipation for the riot of hell-spawned, warring riffs that awaits. And there's a tinge of regret in Keeler's voice as he ushers in "In Search of Sanity" by disclosing he hasn't sung the song with the band since the late '80s, but after Onslaught relentlessly and fiercely pounds it into smoldering rubble, the wait seems well worth it. There really is no rest for the wicked.
– Peter Lindblad

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