Trail Of Blood – Closer To God

Germany is no stranger to thrash groups tinged with hints of death metal here and there, so one may not be surprised to hear remnants of Dew Scented or Kreator when checking out Trail Of Blood’s fourth album “Closer To God’. The production is pretty crisp so everything can be heard, and though the album features some pretty standard riffing and solos that has been heard on probably fifty different thrash metal albums before this one, the result is still very impressive with a fast, aggressive album that will appeal towards fans of Slayer all the way to Malevolent Creation. While this album doesn’t feature the longest time gap for maturity between releases, it shows this four piece doesn’t feel like they rushed things since 2017 to make their 2020 release.

Starting off with ‘Shedding Ov A God’ one can definitely hear the Dew Scented influence in the riffs- fast, but melodic. The dual vocal approach along with the guitars step away from traditional ‘shouting’ thrash and delves more towards black/ death metal territory, touching more towards a route that a group like Legion of the Damned might take. The drums are especially prominent and clear- almost as good as what Abysmal Dawn did on their 2020 album which took the death metal world by storm earlier this year. The guitar solos are melodic but don’t linger forever and overall sets a good expectation for what Trail Of Blood is about. Other tracks like ‘The Great Equestrienne’ feel more like it leans towards melodic death metal territory such as Children Of Bodom (without keyboards) and ‘Until the Light Takes Us All’ is more of a speed thrash assault akin to Vader.

Other tracks like ‘Jesaja 14 12’ are a little too fast, letting the drums kick so much into overdrive that they feel a bit monotone, but the guitar solo featured here is probably the most unique of all the tracks. ‘Take Another Lamb’ tends to lose listeners on its repetitive guitar riffs but includes a bit more variation on the drums and an overall pace that would appeal to those who enjoy more modern Metallica versus the earlier works.

As a result, not every track here is a winner but one has to give Trail Of Blood credit for trying to diversify here and there with each one, be it the vocal approach or their choice in guitar solos (almost every track has a different sounding solo so that is something that propels them above ‘standard thrash.’) Ultimately, those who like blackened or death touched thrash metal is going to enjoy this release with a sure approach. The urge to head bang is impossible to resist and while some of the riffs may not be the most amazing, they will stick in listeners’ heads for a few days just after one listen.

3.5 / 5 STARS 

Reviewer: Colin McNamara

Sep 29, 2020

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Trail Of Blood – Closer To God

review Trail Of Blood - Closer To God

1. Shedding Ov A God
2. Closer To Heaven
3. The Great Equestrienne
4. I, The Abyss
5. He Who Has Spoiled The Flesh
6. Until The Light Takes Us All
7. Jesaja 14 12
8. Lunarrpryest
9. Take Another Lamb

3.5

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