Revocation – Empire of the Obscene (Metal Blade)

Genre: Thrash metal

With 2014’s Deathless, Revocation cemented their place as one of extreme metal’s most exciting (and technically gifted) acts. So it’s perhaps no surprise that Metal Blade have seen fit to reissue the Boston boys’ 2008 debut, Empire of the Obscene, throwing  the band’s 2006 demo, Summon the Spawn, into the package too.

What is surprising though is that Revocation only pressed a paltry 1000 copies of the album when they self-released it, as it’s brimming with thrash fury, incisive riffs and blazing solos. Plus, it contains some exceptional songs, such as Age of Iniquity. No wonder Relapse picked the band up ahead of 2009’s Existence is Futile.

There are more straight-up thrash metal moments on Empire of the Obscene than the band’s increasingly progressive later work, with strong hints of Forbidden and especially Megadeth in David Davidson’s arsenal of riffs. And that’s no bad thing, especially when it results in tracks like Tail from the Crypt, a real adrenaline rush of a tune that brings to mind ‘deth classics like Hangar 18.

Granted, it isn’t the finished article by any means and Revocation sound like they were still refining their style at this point. But as an overlooked thrash gem, Empire of the Obscene shines brightly.

RUSHONROCK RATED: 8/10 Imperious