Released: 2012, Massacre
German thrash metal band Vendetta’s new album FEED THE EXTERMINATION is part of my homage to the glory days of German thrash metal this month. Also on tap are two re-issues of Exhumer’s POSSESSED BY FIRE and RISING FROM THE SEA. Back in the day the United State’s “Big Four” quickly established a qualitative superiority over most of the other thrash metal bands in the country, and similarly Germany had the Trio of Thrash consisting of Sodom, Kreator, and Destruction. Nevertheless, plenty of competent bands nipped at the heels of both the thrash hierarchies. Vendetta was one such band that released two slabs of mandatory thrash in the late 80’s, GO AND LIVE…STAY AND DIE and the much beloved BRAIN DAMAGE. After falling off the map, it was with much excitement that the band reformed and released the underwhelming HATE in 2007. The new album seeks to redress the tepid reception of HATE and bring the faithful back into the fold.
FEED THE EXTERMINATION enters the modern era in terms of production, everything clear, articulate and pummeling. However, that slightly sloppy sound of the 80s that was endearing is missing, and the bright clarity has robbed the production of any soul. New vocalist Mario Vogel employs the vintage style of the band but also incorporates a lot of shouted vocals, and plenty of F-bombs to portray some kinda Phil Anselmo anger. Musically, if you enjoy mid-temp moshes, blunt and uncomplicated riffs, and a flawless execution of 80’s mid-tier thrash then you will enjoy this album. This is no reinvention but a return to mosh and grind, similar to Hallows Eve’s MONUMENT album. There is a tendency to mosh for too long though, the band clearly so caught up in head banging to bother playing any guitar solos. These missing solos have been criticized by lots of fans of the band. Lyrically, the album is rock bottom, just a shadowed cliché of the glory days, with every other verse a rant of profanity more suited to a teenager. But the biggest gripe I have is that this sounds relatively primitive, too many years of thrash evolution having passed to give this any lasting appeal. Furthermore, new Vendetta is slower and less technical than old Vendetta, perhaps understandable considering the band’s age, but not easy to reconcile.
Still, this has some redeeming qualities because so many of the riffs are very cool, but they go on for too long. Do not be surprised if you are unable to make it through the album in one sitting, simply because it lacks enough variety to hold the attention for long. All things considered, this is certainly worth a few spins for nostalgia, and not nearly as bad as many fans have proclaimed. Definitely chase this with your favorite concoction to improve the album considerably, as this is music that is simple enough for the band to play drunk, and most definitely worthy of a drunken head bang when no one is looking. Throw it in as soon as you reach the point that Kreator is too fast for your buzz.