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Death Angel, ‘The Dream Calls for Blood’ – Album Review

Death Angel - The Dream Calls For Blood
Nuclear Blast Records

More than 30 years after helping spread the genre across the world, it’s amazing how many Bay Area thrash bands are still around and making new music. Metallica, Slayer, Testament, Exodus and many others are still very relevant. Death Angel are another Bay Area thrash group that’s alive and well. Their latest album is ‘The Dream Calls for Blood.’

A new generation of re-thrash bands has helped keep the mantle alive, but bands like Death Angel are still thrashing as hard as they did back in the day. The formula is simple: fast riffs, shredding solos and memorable melodies. You’ll find them in spades on ‘The Dream Calls for Blood.’

The album gets off to a rollicking start with “Left for Dead,” a massive dose of old-school thrash goodness. Death Angel change things up a bit with “Son of the Morning,” a more moderately paced track with a groove that won’t quit.

The 2013 version of Death Angel includes the band’s heart and soul, vocalist Mark Osegueda and guitarist Rob Cavestany. Meanwhile, guitarist Ted Aguilar has been in the band since 2001, and the newest additions are bassist Damien Sisson and drummer Will Carroll. This is the second album for Sisson and Carroll, who first appeared on 2010‘s ‘Relentless Retribution.’

Founded back in 1982, Death Angel have not mellowed with age. Osegueda’s vocals have even more bite than usual. His varies his delivery, and some periodic gang vocals add even more diversity.The dual guitars of Cavestany and Aguilar shred and gallop from beginning to end. From simple riffs to complex solos, their playing is always on point.

The acoustic guitar is brought out for the interlude “Execution,” a brief respite before the thrash resumes with ‘Don’t Save Me.’ Some of the other album highlights include ‘Succubus,’ a memorable song with multiple solos, and the closer ‘Territorial Instinct/Bloodlust,’ the longest song on the album at over 6 minutes. It also has an acoustic beginning before kicking in.

And while there are many re-thrash bands who are talented and flying the flag for the old school, there’s nothing like the original. Death Angel were one of the early bands in the genre, and ‘The Dream Calls For Blood’ shows that three decades later, they are still running on all cylinders.

4 Stars

 

Read an Interview with Death Angel Vocalist Mark Osegueda

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