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Released: 2014, Sleazy Rider
Reviewer: Helias Papadopoulos
Uruguay isn’t such a country that there is a strong metal base, BUT this doesn’t mean there is no metal. In particular thrash metal. Formed in 2008, in Montevideo, Territory is a thrash metal act that loves pounding metal and old-school stuff in the veins of Overkill, Destruction, Helix, Sabbat and Onslaught. THE CURSE is their second album and the curse is real.
The thrash metal ghosts haunted Territory’s soul and cursed it to play in the thrash metal field. This was its punishment. THE CURSE album is obviously something of a turn into the right direction for Territory. While the band's style remains quite similar to their debut release, this second album appears a tad heavier and also stronger when compared to KILLER INSTINCT. The outcome sounds generally more convincing and credible than before, although musically the difference is not huge. Despite some advancements, it is still not unreservedly distinctive enough to completely avoid an occasional typical mediocre feel. This doesn’t mean that the album is boring or something. No, it’s a good piece of work. The songs make a consistent bunch, but the quality is nowhere near the top class. Maybe just not as striking as one might wish for, at least THE CURSE can be called a fair improvement over its predecessor.
There are a lot of things that should be done before we call Territory the next big thing in thrash metal war field. Even the big thrash metal names cannot write any good thrash metal songs. Technically and musically, playing thrash metal is easy, but it has to be an inner inspiration and anger coming straight out of your heart. That’s all needed.
A very positive thing on this record is the sound. It had something of a distinctive sound among the other speed/thrash metal bands (even the production is not the best one it could have). “First Blood” launches the album with a heavy Onslaught-driven speed/thrash riff and an Overkill feeling throughout the song and the double-bass drumming is great here, then “Die” begins with pentatonic riff and a groovy sounding guitar. The third song, the title track, begins with a mini bass solo with a sandstorm as a sonic background, then a mid-tempo riff war starts. Artillery would envy this song. “Moshulu” isn’t the romantic Latin accordion-laden song that you would listen whilst on a romantic dinner with your girlfriend. After the 0:20” you will be an earwitness of the biggest heavy/power metal madness. I think in this song that I can hear Kai Hansen in Jason’s voice in the couplets only. “1984” is another mid-tempo thrash metal gem reminiscent of latter Destruction of THE ANTICHRIST period. “Sacred Field” is like Dave Mustaine wrote this song for Territory and he told Jason to sing like he does. You can sing along the great chorus while you are in the mosh pit. This is a speed metal song with a great guitar interchange and solos around. The seventh song of the album, “Low Tension” is a slow track that flirts enough with hard rock, but I have the feeling that the band had fun on the recordings of this song as they couldn’t focus on the recording session. The last song “TTY” is a mid-tempo (4/4) gem with special thrash metal screams (the greatest ones of this record), a tempo change that grabs you and doesn’t make you get bored even the song is long enough (6:02) for a thrash metal song. I do like the end with a “buh!” in 3:22 and then the clock is ticking and a piano-ladden tune begins. And the record is finished bluffly a little bit.
All in all, this is a good effort from a new band that acts in thrash metal field combining the love for old-school thrash metal in the likes of the above thrash metal giants. The observable credibility is at least on an adequate level, and the outcome is quite good. Territory does what their heart says, and they do it in the right way. Just waiting to hear what’s next…
1. First Blood
3. The Curse
6. Sacred Field
7. Low Tension
Jason – Vocals
Marth - Guitar
Gallo - Drums
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