Released: 2009, Area Death Productions
Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen
The Ipswich-based Anihilated that was formerly known as Prospex, and playing punk rock, was formed back in 1981. In England, it was very popular to play punk rock back in those days, even if the times were about to change. Heavy Metal started to gain more ground as the most popular form of marginal music in the last half of 70s, soon becoming youngsters' favorite kind of music.
Much like it was with the British thrash force Onslaught who had their punk-ish roots clearly visible – and to be heard on their debut album POWER FROM HELL (released originally on a small Children of the Revolution label in 1985), neither could their fellow mates Anihilated hide the band´s original punk roots completely in the beginning – nor it was necessary even.
Anihilated – after going toward a more crossover type of thing musically since re-naming the band as Anihilated, self-released their 1st 4-track EP (titled PATH TO DESTRUCTION), and put it out on their own Brew label back in 1986. When listening to this EP in question, it can be noticed that Anihilated were still going through a transition from a punk group to a more crossover/metal type of band. The band´s past punk influences are definitely there – no doubts, even if anyone who had followed the band´s career since the very beginning of their punk days, the contrast between the stuff on the PATH TO DESTRUCTION EP and their earlier stuff, is kinda drastic indeed. This can be noticed by listening to the band´s 5-track SPEEDWELL demo (also sometimes known by the title GARDEN SHED), that is pure hardcore-punk song-wise. Also some of their song titles on this demo, like “40 Dumb Animals”, or “Ethiophia”, necessarily did not give any impression about Anihilated being a metal band, did it? The 4 live songs that have been featured for this compilation of Anihilated´s early stuff, only just strengthens the idea about Anihilated´s punk/HC background.
It´s very cool that totally underground labels like this Chinese Area Death Productions put out this type of rare stuff that you don´t see any major label doing these days much at all (unless their bands haven´t achieved some status and popularity among the majority of metal listeners). This re-release of the band´s rare PATH TO DESTRUCTION - with all the bonuses, works out as a nice school lesson what Anihilated used to be back in the day, how they sounded like and all that. However, a fair warning is in order, I guess. If you haven´t ever been into the punk/HC stuff, then do not even expect this CD to do much for you as Anihilated does not sound anything what they did on their 2 excellent full-length albums (having this very Slayer-esque vibe in both of them), those being released 2-3 years after this.