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Album Review: Annihilator – Ballistic Sadistic

Thrash legends Annihilator return more charged-up than ever on Ballistic Sadistic…

Sounds like Annihilator mainman Jeff Waters has started putting something in his tea. Having made their debut – the classic Alice In Hell – over 30 years ago, you might have thought the Canadian metal crew would be starting to rust. Think again. 

Jeff refers to Ballistic, Sadistic as being his band’s finest work since 2005’s Schizo Deluxe, but he’s really underselling it: this is one of the best albums Annihilator have ever made. From the very start it engages with serrated, poison-tipped riffs, crazed guitar solos and gnarly time changes, along with gloriously old school hooks that become even bigger via beefy modern production. 

The crunch factor on Armed To The Teeth and Riot is immense, while Psycho Ward chucks in an almost punk attack that simply stuns. Then there are mad rampages like Dressed Up For Evil, redolent of thrash metal’s late-’80s heyday. Age sure as hell has not wearied Annihilator. Hopefully this earns these overlooked legends the respect they deserve.

Verdict: 3/5

Posted on January 24th 2020, 8:00a.m.
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