Coming out back at the end of February, we missed reviewing the debut from Portugal Thrashers Mindtaker, but Jon puts that right with his thoughts on the ‘Toxic War’
Hailing from Portugal,four piece thrash/crossover band Mindtaker ( Marco-vocals, Goncalo-Guitar, Miguel-Bass and Rui-drums) are here with their debut offering, Toxic War.
When the first track “I am the Kid” begins, you would be forgiven for thinking this is another big 4 clone (Megadeth in this case with a slow intro reminiscent of In my darkest hour) but that’s not the case and what follows is 40 minutes of fist in your face 100mph thrash metal. The pace is relentless, barely leaving the listener a chance of a breather between tracks before the next bombardment.
The tracks on Toxic War are short sharp bursts of pure aggression, the longest track (title track, Toxic war) clocking in at just over the 4 minute mark. The riffs are well written and very catchy so that the listener can’t help but bang that head along to this and when the tempo changes come, that bangs a little harder in appreciation of well crafted songs.
The album has 11 tracks but at no point do you find yourself reaching out for the skip button, each track is more than capable of standing on its own. Stand outs for me were “I am the Kid” great opener and introduction to the anger simmering on this album. “Into the Pit” it’s 2020 we all want back into the pits and this song sums it up. “Hell on Earth” just a great thrash song with a great headbanging chorus.
The lyrical content a standard thrash fare, violence, religion is bad, mosh pits, terrorism, war and beer so no matter your lyrical preference Mindtaker have you covered and Marco spits each word out with pure venom and malice to make you sit up and take notice. The production on Toxic War is superb. All too often the little things are lost in the mix, but not here. It highlights each member and lets their talents shine through in the mix.
There’s nothing new or innovative on here and comparisons aplenty (Overkill, Testament and Nuclear Assault to name a few) however, this is a damn good album in it’s own right. The riffs are there in abundance and the production quality is top notch. The album art gives away one of their biggest influences in Municipal Waste, its green, toxic and has a skeleton/zombie with a baseball cap having a beer. Whats not to like?
Toxic War is out now on Mosher Records and is available in physical copy on Bandcamp and digitally via the normal streaming services.