Shrapnel is a relatively new metal quintet formed in Norwich, England. They are active since 2009 and in 2014 published the first LP, The Virus Conspires. After a few years of refining and improving their musical style, these guys released on late September their second album, named Raised on Decay, which gained immediately a great attention as possibly one of the best thrash releases of the year.
What’s definitely remarkable on this record is the personality and character of these English metallers. Their music, though moving in a musical genre where nowadays almost all the things that could be invented have been already played, manages to appear still cool and intriguing. There is nothing very new in these songs and the influences of the thrash masters permeate many of the songs of the album. Nonetheless, the basic ingredients of the genre have all been perfectly dosed into their recipe, which is then enriched with a good dose of pride and impetuosness.
Musically speaking, we’re in front of a style of metal that is clearly dominated by the powerful and incessant rhythmic sections, on top of which we can enjoy chirurgical guitar riffs and also a number of very good guitar solos. Many songs are characterized by a beautiful alternation of conventional mid-tempo thrashy passages with sections at much higher rhythm, producing a contrast that typically makes the songs brighter and more dynamic and only in some limited cases seems a bit constrained and not totally spontaneous.
The Englishmen’s gig continues to combine different schools of thrash (Kreator, Testament), but this time around, the heavy/speed metal element (Judas Priest and other outfits come to mind more often than not) has a prominent role, that’s expected to really deliver in live concerts. (Sputnik Music)
Shrapnel’s hard-hitting and ferocious effort might have just paid off. An amalgamation of modern and classic sounds makes this album unique. It splits down the middle of thrash, death, and portions of tech-death styles seamlessly thus daring to discover a tone that sounds exhilarating and gives the album character. (Metal Wani)