Released: 2004, Self-released
Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen
One of the very first Finnish speed/thrash metal bands ever, National Napalm Syndicate, has made their comeback. This is actually their first studio recording since the band’s previous vocalist Altti Veteläinen (ex- Eternal Tears of Sorrow, ex-Kalmah) left shortly after the band released a 4-song promotional demo last year. Enter Ilkka Järvenpää, the ex-singer of Solution 13.
At first I nearly refused to believe it was the same band when I listened to this latest effort. Namely I was quite damn amazed myself as they have improved quite drastically musically since the days they recorded their first ever promotional demo-CD almost right after the comeback. There seems to be a lot of more sheer energy being pumped up into their songs now compared to the previous demo. The songs sound overall more carefully crafted, better built up and the whole band seems to play much tighter together than they did a year ago.
I wouldn’t go comparing the band’s new stuff to anything they have done before – at least not for their debut album which was released 15 years ago. In 2004 they are a few light years away from the uncompromising speed/thrash metal concept they had back then, but let’s not forget either that there’s only two original members left in the band from the past line-up.
The 2004 version of the band combines bits from speed metal with a more traditional heavy metal. What spices these songs up is a heavy use of strong melodies and some killer solos that really make the songs to stand out better and more effortlessly than ever before. Especially such songs as the opening track “Corrosion of Humanity” and the last song“Nothing but Fear”. Both are damn convincing tour-de-forces for bringing National Napalm Syndicate back to the elite league of the Finnish Metal scene. We haven’t been waiting the return of this northern bunch in vain. Be warmly welcomed back to the metal scene ... we haven’t banished you into eternal oblivion!