Destruction - Mad Butcher (1987)Release ID: 3002
The German thrash metal legends continued to hone their craft. This time recruiting a new drummer & an additional lead guitarist & going for a cleaner & much more complex sound. I do enjoy the substantially more accomplished level of musicianship on display here. Particularly the guitar solos which are a real highlight & one gets the feeling that the entire purpose of the E.P. was to showcase the improved technical skills of the new lineup. The production does sound a touch empty at times but I'd be lying if I didn't say that I prefer a more polished sound than we'd heard from the band previously.
The re-recorded version of the title track is an improvement on the sloppier, dirtier original while the two new originals are both extremely entertaining. Particularly the very sophisticated "Reject Emotions" which reminds me a lot of "Rust In Peace" era Megadeth in its melodic & structural extravagance. Unfortunately the cover version of Plasmatics' "The Damned" is an obvious misfire & there are a few of those effeminate squeals that have tainted previous Destruction releases. In fact, Schmier doesn't sound anywhere near as aggressive & unhinged as he did on a record like "Sentence Of Death". There's definitely enough musical quality here to make this a really enjoyable release for fans of Teutonic thrash though & it may be a controversial opinion but I rate it more highly than any of Destruction's previous material.