Reviewed: August 2020
Released: 2020, Selfmadegod Records
Reviewer: Jack Merry
Sanity Control is a crossover thrash metal band hailing from Warsaw, Poland who pay homage to the classic metal sounds while combining it with a distorted hardcore punk assault and shoving the whole thing through a blender repeatedly. I mean that in the best way possible. This is exactly what I want from a modern thrash outfit, a band that isn’t afraid to throw all the ingredients together to create a blistering whirlwind of noise and chaos.
The band’s debut album War on Life is set for release on the 7th August 2020 via Selfmadegod Records in Europe (and SeeingRed Records in North America) and it’s poised to take the metal world by storm. War on Life is the product from a band that very clearly only cares about playing heavy metal fast and loose. The monstrous album artwork by Raf Wechterowicz lets you know immediately what kind of music the record holds; kicking and screaming somewhere on the metal spectrum between Municipal Waste and Toxic Holocaust.
Fully loaded with eight explosive high-octane rounds of hardcore punk-infused thrash, War on Life grooves with just the right amount of hooks and menacing riffs coupled with heaviness whilst also having a keen understanding of how to totally utilize the riff to pummel the listener into submission. This album is a nuclear bomb waiting to be unleashed and a screaming voice aimed at a broken, corrupt and battered system. Lyrically, the album is an angry war cry at the overwhelming amount of social issues the world is experiencing; be it poverty, the government, the media… You name it, it’s more than likely on this record. It’s an impressive feat for Sanity Control, as the album only has a 19-minute runtime with each song clocking in at around two minutes. Not only that, but there’s a huge live feel across the record, and it sounds like it was recorded by the whole band in the same room, feeding off of that energy and anger.
You won’t find any schmaltzy ballads or mid-tempo rockers here, this is out-and-out balls to the wall thrash metal from the opening attack of the title track to the closing bars of “Dying Order” and everything in-between. “Rope” is a phenomenal chugging riff rager, and “Swarm” has a main guitar part that Kerry King would be proud of. “Hunt” excels in every way in a volcanic lesson of peak extreme thrash metal while “Enough” is a man pushed to breaking point; pissed off with humanity. There’s a lot here to love if you’re a fan of thrash metal, and I’d also say it’s an accessible record if you’re looking for a way into the genre. My one complaint is that there’s not enough here to enjoy because of the short run time, and I want more. I’ll be eagerly awaiting new music from Sanity Control and they’ve gained a new fan for life here.
This is one of the most exciting and vicious thrash metal albums I’ve heard in a hot minute, and I can see War on Life dragging its own beaten and bloodied corpse up my most played list of 2020. It’s raw, aggressive, violent, and absolutely bonkers.
- War on Life
- Paying is Believing
- Good Dogs
- Dying Order