Released: 2014, SPV
Fans of German Thrash often talk about about ‘The Big Four’ (Destruction, Kreator, Sodom and Tankard) but that could easily be expanded to include Holy Moses. They have been around just as long and have been grinding out world- class thrash for decades.
We haven’t covered as much Holy Moses on our site. They were very prolific early on releasing seven albums in eight years, from 1986-1994. Since then have been pretty sporadic only releasing four albums in the past 20 years. We at Metal-Rules don’t go back and review too much pre-1995 stuff so we haven’t reviewed too many albums by Holy Moses however I am always happy when they do put out an album. REDEFINED MAYHEM is the bands 11th studio album.
It’s been a long six years since AGONY OF DEATH and since then thev band have joined the venerable SPV roster. As one could predict there have been some big changes since the last album. The band has dropped to being a quartet after dropping both guitarists (Oliver Jaath and Michael Hankel) and journeyman drummer Atomic Stief. Vocalist Sabina and bassist Thomas are now joined by drummer Gerd Lucking (Rebellion) and the relatively unknown guitarist Peter Geltat. The band has always been more of an institution, founded and run by vocalist, Sabina, the only original member left. Over the years dozens of people have come and gone, so there has never really been a stable ‘band’ line-up. Even Sabina left at one point but she is there now.
REDEFINED MAYHEM has a cover that matches some of visual theme of older albums and features an evil Moses character, a new mascot perhaps? The production is superb, modern and raw but without being too hot or overproduced. The highlight of the album of course art the vocals of Sabina. She is one of, if not, the first female extreme Metal vocalist. Angela Gossow got a lot of credit but Sabina was doing it for years before. Her voice shows no sign on wear on REDEFINED MAYHEM. SHE growls and roars like a singer possessed, deliver raw thrash vocals that have been her trademark sounds for decades.
The album is full-on thrash with a fierce tone and pace. The album never really slows down although there a couple of songs such as ‘Liars’ which are a bit slower. The compositions are pretty standard style songs, most of the 13 tracks running in the 3-4 minute range, with a strong chorus and a few strong riffs to carry the song. A band like Holy Moses could really show some of these young retro-thrash band how it is really done!
Six years between albums for an older band is a long time and the band has once again, reinvented themselves hence the title REDEFINED MAYHEM. I hope they can sustain this momentum because the album is excellent.