Third kick at the can for these New Jersey mallet-heads, and improvements abound everywhere. As DTA put out their first self-titled demo in 2003 and have been kind enough to send me all three of their releases so far, I’ve had the opportunity to watch the band grow over the last four years from garage-level demo thrashers to lean, mean, semi-professional thrash machine. Case in point – INVIDIOUS features the band’s best cover art / inlay presentation yet – good enough that it looks like it could come from a label if you didn’t know they issued this thing themselves.
What’s more, the band’s thrash assault comes wrapped in the best, clearest production they’ve ever had. While some of the endearing grime is lost from the DTA sound, it’s definitely a pleasing transition. Other changes: Bassist Kris Kraemer has been “promoted” to guitarist, and vocalist Danny Noble’s once piercing howl has been largely removed in favour of a more in vogue (read: average) growl. This is a loss for me because even though it’s an effective growl, it takes away most of the slight old-school sound of the band and lumps them more in line with the modern “thrashers” of today.
Still, INVIDIOUS is an excellent smorgasbord for fans of classic metal-shaded thrash. From track one to track six, DTA weave an iron curtain of riffery that isn’t afraid to be a little progressive in its assault. Indeed, three of the songs are 5+ minutes in length with one other that just misses that mark, making this the meatiest slab that DTA have come up with so far. The good news is that the band hasn’t forgotten the essentials of thrash during their growth spurt, as the title track quickly reminds with a swift kick upside the head.
I can’t recommend this band enough to thrash fans. They may have a small catalogue, but all of it is worth visiting.
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