Evile – Five Serpent’s Teeth Album Review0 By Rick Bakker
Evile’s Five Serpent’s Teeth is a great modern thrash album that should appeal to Metallica and Megadeth fans.
Britain’s Evile are unashamed to wear their influences on their sleeve. They exist to bring back the glory days of 80’s thrash metal, and one listen will have you recalling the classic riffs and grooves of the “Big Four” (Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, Anthrax for the uninitiated). They have returned with Five Serpent’s Teeth (Earache Records – Oct 18th 2011), the follow up to their acclaimed major label debut Infected Nations. Unlike other contemporary metal acts who play in the thrash metal vein and seem to merely imitate, Evile are able to create a sound that simultaneously pays homage to their influences while forging original and memorable songs that stand on their own.
If there’s one band that Evile can be compared to most with the songs on this album, it is easily Metallica. The influence can be heard right from the opening notes of the introductory track “Five Serpents Teeth”, which slowly builds with the same phased guitar tones of “Blackened”. Once it builds to the speedy verse riff and vocalist/rhythm guitarist Matt Drake’s James Hetfield inspired vocals, you will quickly feel that this is the modern thrash album that Metallica always promised but never truly delivered. Throughout the album the band recalls classic “Master of Puppets” along with “…And Justice for All” era tracks, with fasts tempo’s and speedy guitar work driving the tracks through. The memorable riffs are perfectly paired with Drake’s great voice, which carries a mix of melody and grit that, again, brings comparisons to James Hetfield at his finest. The lead guitar work of Ol Drake is another potent weapon in the bands aresnal, shredding with technical presicion and an excellent, cutting tone.
Whether it’s the breakneck pace of a track like “Origin of Oblivion” or the mid tempo, head-banging groove of the excellent track “Cult”, the band demonstrates an ability to write memorable songs that will have you hitting the repeat button, and that is always a good sign that an album is going to stand the test of time. Some songs do come close to bordering on imitation, such as “Xaraya”, which sounds very close to “Don’t Tread on Me” from Metallica’s self titled black album. But when the band is at their best, such as the slow, melodically despondent “In Memoriam”, Evile prove that they can stand toe to toe with their thrash metal heroes.
Five Serpent’s Teeth could be a breakthrough album for Evile and would be deserving of whatever hype this band can generate. If they are able to land the right tours with some of their influences, they could also be the first band that’s not from the 80’s to break out into the metal mainstream with a pure thrash style. While there’s nothing revolutionary about the band’s sound, those looking for a good thrash metal outing from someone other then one of the “Big Four” should listen to this.