SOULLESS - THE DARKENING OF DAYS
Formed by former members of Cleveland, USA bands Decrepit, Bloodsick (who had a split 7" with Nunslaughter) and Decimation, Soulless (not a Grave tribute band) has sent in an older full length recorded two years ago. The band is planning another release but this CD showcases an aggressive thrash metal with influences ranging from Slayer to Atheist. The vocals specially remind of early Atheist with their high shrieks and gargling attack. The band does veer to the technical occasionally (and would have been more so if the drums weren't muffled), but overall this is a speedy metal to which it is fun to bang heads and listen. Overall a very professional package from a band that has its act together. The question though is the market's appetite for a thrash metal band that doesn't appeal to the low elements of society like Pantera. $10 to 6110 Bradley Ave., Cleveland, Ohio 44129-2218 USA.
SOULLESS - AGONY'S LAMENT - WORLDCHAOS
It may sound obvious, but a thrash metal band should actually thrash the listener. This point is somehow lost on most contemporary thrash acts. Far from a mediocre band, Soulless is a crushing metal assault on the senses which does exactly as advocated above. Agony's Lament is a classy slab of molten thrash metal with elements from At The Gates, Hexx and early Atheist. The quintet does punch through musically, but also injects the occasional harmony into the fray. The singer spits his venom incessantly and hurls one power-phrase after the other. The music is well recorded, with the guitar sounds sharp and the drum snare pitched for heaviness. Having said that, the mix seems to favour the vocals of Jim Lippucci somewhat. Complete with a strong presentation and a stronger image, Soulless is a sure bet for thrash fans. - Ali "the Metallian"