Thrash has been a HUGE discussion point recently. Ever since Slayer returned in 2015 with Repentless, it seems as if every major thrash group has made their return to the modern scene. 2016 saw Megadeth and Metallica put out (in my opinion) some pretty lacking material, while Anthrax and Testament managed to produce some of the best work of their careers. But this is 2017, and thrash is still very much relevant. German thrash powerhouses, Kreator, are back in the studio saddle with their follow up to 2012s Phantom Antichrist, and with plenty of time to work on this thing, thrash fans have been anxiously awaiting to hear what it could present. Kreator, Overkill, and maybe even Exodus are all in the spotlight for thrash in 2017, so did they please the masses with Gods Of Violence? Well...
International cover by Jan Meininghaus
If you follow me on the Metal Amino app, you know that I have been desperately waiting for that first 5/5 rating I could give this year.
Kreator just barely missed that score with this absolutely jaw-dropping display of modernized thrash.

After the intro track, Kreator launches straight into "World War Now", a grand opener full of energy. That energy never seems to let up as the thrash starts heavy and stays there.

Mille Petrozza and Sami Yil-Sirniö both do an exceptional job on guitars. Their tone specifically is something I admire a ton. It has the perfect amount of distortion to make those fast riffs and licks flow in their perfectly addicting fashion. The album's lead single "Satan Is Real" will no doubt become a metal riff staple. The soloing on tracks such as "Army Of Storms" and the title track completely dominate the soundscape.

The drums here are equally as masterful as the guitars and bass duties of Speesy Giesler. Ventor Reil really does know how to handle the heads on this album, and he does so with pinpoint precision and downright unbelievable fills.

The vocals may be the part that turns a couple listeners away. I, for one, very much love Mille Petrozza's voice and think it’s a perfect complement to the already incredible instrumentals. However, the lyrics can often get slightly cheesy. When you write primarily about satanic imagery and apocalyptic war, you tend to use the same ideas as other bands out there, and it just starts to come off as a bit forced.

The only other problem I have with this album is the opener, "Apocalypticon". A minute-long opener shouldn't make you cringe. But, with the often-overused march-style drums and hilariously cheesy horns and strings, I couldn't help but be taken out of my previous excitement to listen to this album once I heard this opener. Of course, the album that followed was great, but it sucks that I most likely will be skipping that track entirely the next couple of times I listen to this due to its pointlessness and lack of originality.

 "Death Becomes My Light" is a testament (ha, thrash) to why Kreator is still relevant amongst all of these new faces in the thrash scene. The slow and soft open comes to a head on what is one of the most skillfully performed tracks on this album that seriously took my breath away as it closed the track list off with a bang.

Overall, I feel you would probably be doing yourself a disservice not giving this thing a listen. It has a couple noticeable hiccups, but that does not detract from the fact that Kreator have further proved why they should be a household thrash name above some others. Go out and get this thing, you won’t regret it. 

Rating: 4.5/5 

 Miland "Mille" Petrozza – vocals, guitar 
Jürgen "Ventor" Reil – drums, vocals 
Christian "Speesy" Giesler – bass 
Sami Yli-Sirniö – guitar 

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