The New Wave of Traditional Heavy Metal: an attempt awakening of the post-millennium crop of teenagers who were fortunate enough to find tapes of Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Accept and King Diamond hidden safely in the secret compartment of their parents’ basement (right underneath the Playboys and the home-made sex tapes), a discovery which (besides giving them an idea what their parents were before they became corporate bums and soccer moms) opened their eyes to WHAT METAL WAS SUPPOSED TO FUCKIN’ BE. Amalgamating the stylistic elements of the aforementioned bands with those of thrash, bands such as White Wizzard, Enforcer and Cauldron began to bring back the machismo of the late 70’s and 80’s.
Falling in the same vein as these bands, Evil Invaders (hell, even their name is taken from the 4th album of Canadian speed metal band Razor) was formed by Johannes Van Audenhove a.k.a Joe(guitars and vocals) and played their first gig in 2009. They have come a long way since then, releasing a self-titled E.P. in 2013 and a full length album entitled ‘Pulses of Pleasure’ in 2015. With a line-up that currently includes Max Mayhem (lead guitars), Senne Jacobs (drums) and Joeri van de Schoot (bass guitar) they released an E.P. titled ‘In for the Kill’ on September 30 via Napalm records.
The E.P. opens with “As Life Slowly Fades” which is your typical thrash number, a track that screams Exodus and Slayer. Senne Jacobs’ drumming in this song is nothing short of earth shattering and he maintains those fast double bass shred patterns for the better part of the song. I just wish his double bass sounded better as the sound lacked the crispness that it should have had. Joeand Max Mayhem trade solos effortlessly and I should say that their soloing has improved by leaps and bounds. “Raising Hell” is the band’s tribute to the legacy of Lemmy with its Iron Fist-ish opening, a riff structure that carries the weight of the song. The song also incorporates classic thrash in the song with its periodic fast double bass and has a tinge of melody in the chorus and towards the end of the song. Both these track are followed by live versions of “Pulses of Pleasure” and “Victim of Sacrifice”.
Both the tracks are nothing short of mind blowing and Evil Invaders are definitely on their way to commercial success and widespread critical respect (well, they already have the latter). However it befuddles me as to why they would release an E.P with just two new songs. They could have just released those two songs as 2 separate singles. When I heard they were coming out with a new E.P I expected something similar to their first E.P which blew my socks off or something like ‘The $ 5.98 E.P.: Garage Days Re-Revisited’ by Metallica which was promoted to optimally encompass its scope.
I would like to reiterate that the band has it all to go places. They have the attitude, the power screams, the solos and the anthem (Joe even has a 70’s porn moustache, for crying out loud). It would have been a better choice to include a couple of new songs or one new song coupled with studio recordings of their covers of Exodus’ “Fabulous Disaster” and Exciter’s “Violence and Force”. This E.P just did not do justice to the hype that precluded it and I feel that the phenomenal artwork by Mario Lopez could have been used as the cover for their next album thus providing it with the rightful appreciation it deserves. In conclusion, ‘In For The Kill’ was not compelling enough for me to categorically say that I was pleased with it. Let us hope they make wiser choices next time.