Not too innovative, but rock solid and very consistent
General Zombie | the West | 07/27/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Good Metal here. Nice Metallica style thrash with atypically good production and some fun vocals. Thrash fans should not be disappointed.
The vox are a major point of debate on this album, but I like em. For the most part their pretty raw and vaguely punkish, though they still manage more melody than lotsa thrash vocalists.. What really makes them standout are the incredible, over the top shrieks which are thrown in every now and then. I doubt if I will ever tire of his girly shrieking. However, the vox on Thrashers are done by a different guy, who isn't as good, though he's competent. The albums got silly lyrics, as with much thrash, but who cares. They're kinda fun in a stupid way. The rhythm section is run of the mill thrash, but they get the job done. Solid leads by Cavestany. Not just a King or Hammet rip-off, and has got some actual melody and musicality to his work. The rhythm guitar work is very good. Riffs are very much like Metallica's, probably moreso than any other thrash band with the possible exception of Testament. Still not exactly the same style, however. A bit faster, and rougher, and quite not as chunky and rhythmic. Great guitar tone too. Very harsh sounding, but not overly fuzzy with good clarity and definition.
Only six real tracks, but all but one are very good to excellent. It's hurt by a general lack of variety, other than in the title track, but variety was rarely a thrash bands strong point anyway. The weak link in the album is the opener Thrashers. Weaker vox and subpar riffage which is repeated ad nauseam. Not too bad, particularly as the first song they wrote, but definitely shoulda been a minute or 2 shorter. Evil Priest is much better. Better riffs, better vox and much more variety. A solid piece all around. The next 4 tracks are the strongest pieces on the album. Voracious Souls is probably my favorite track. The chorus is absolutely great, and it's totally solid otherwise. Kill as One has got another great chorus, and a sweet main riff too. Especially great shrieking too. The title track is a ten minute instrumental. It never seems to be going anywhere in particular, but it's got tons of riffs which are consistently good, and some nice melody here and there.(the one they ripped off from Iron Maiden is probably the best) Plus, I just like epic instrumentals, and you don't hear them all that often. Mistress of Pain is probably the second best track on the album, and it probably has the best rhythm guitar work of any of them. It's a nicely constructed song too, contrasting the more moderately paced, but driving main/chorus riff with some more blazing speed riffs to great effect. More great shrieks too, perhaps the highest ones on the album. Final Death isn't quite as good as the previous 4 tracks, but it's still a very good thrash song. Nothing really distinguishes it, I suppose, but not something you oughta skip over either.
Well, that's it. Very good, Old-School Bay-Area style thrash. Nice and cheap too.
Beats other bands to a pulp
S. Reeves | California Coast | 06/28/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Homegrown Death Angel is a legend in the thrash and speed metal scene. Their first album, "Ultra-Violence" is the best of the three. Yea, it's pure speed metal allright but brutal speed metal. Not a light hearted affair at all. In terms of speed metal this is as fast as landmark albums like Reign in Blood, or Kill 'Em All. Best tracks are Ultra Violence (which actually has a frew chords stolen from Iron Madien at the start and end, but a very good 10 minute song!), Mistress of Pain, and Thrashers. However they are all good, just some better than others! If you're an old school metal guy, you can't lose on this one. BTW, don't miss Death Angel at Maritime on August 11th! First time they have played in 10 years."
Evolution in progress, D.A. at infancy, a rough gem
Zander Haberstaft | Miami, Florida | 07/20/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Death Angel only had a three album Thrash career (1987-1990) but considering the short time they had been around they made quite an impact. The most amazing thing was that some of them were still in high school when this album came out.On their first album they definitely went for speed over different time signatures. Mark Osqueda's voice is a little muted in the first song but he developes it throughout the album. It gets a little better as the album goes on. I'm of the opinion that he became more annoying in later albums. The guitar work is pretty good and is pretty fast in comparison to the other Thrash contenders at the time. The guitarist doesn't overuse the open E note so seasoned Thrashers will notice some notes in higher octaves picked over the chugga-chugga rants Thrash bands had been known for. The bassist is good as well and plays some interesting -albeit a little crazy- lines.The drummer uses all the Thrash conventions at the time, double-bass, blast beats, but he also adds other things in too. At times he tries to play some funk lines or fusion over the run-of-the-mill Thrash drumming. This adds an interesting element to the drumming. He isn't very good at using the double-bass (it is horribly uneven) but he becomes an overall better drummer in later efforts.A better effort than most Thrash bands at the time could deliver but I would get "Frolic through the Park" before you get this (if you already haven't). Harsh, relatively fast, clever, everything a Thrash album should be if it is going to stand the test of time -which Death Angel did."
Stands the test of time
Washburn | ISTANBUL Turkey | 07/01/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"These guys (kids I should say) are amasing. I had this on tape back in 89-90 and listened to it until the tape wore out. I just got the cd recently after all those years to include in the "history section" of my cd shelf. I enjoyed the cd just as much after 14 years and realised that there aren't many bands these days that I believe I'd listen to even 4 years from now. A true classic if you pardon the cliche, 100% bay area thrash. Don't miss."
critico constructivo | PR | 04/11/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
This my friends in their time, was one of the best thrash albums ever made. The guitar work here is excellent!!! With incredible solos, great vocals and solid musicianship throghout. Back in the day, i bought this on cassette, but now i get it on CD. So, if you like Dark Angel, Slayer, Forbidden, give this a try!!!"