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Outlaw Racer

They're baaaa-aack! Estonia's Nitrous second album follows in the same path as its predecessor, with a lyrical theme centered around muscle cars, drag races - well, you get the idea. Hell, when I saw the album name I thought this would be a good name for a series of video games. Once again some straightforward Thrash - in fact one could say this is "minimalistic Thrash", since Nitrous have a very basic sound, although this time around they've varied things a little, throwing in more... "melody" if you will, and there's even a couple of guest vocalists on this one as well. The (main) vocalist also sticks to his guns with his clean, deep and commanding voice with a kind of "tough biker" attitude. In fact the vocalist and the lyrics are what set Nitrous apart - musically you'll definitely find more interesting Thrash out there, but the aforementioned combination makes this different, and even fun to some extent (assuming you like cars, that is.) The vocals are still a bit uneven, just like on Dominant Force, the vocalist sometimes apparently trying to go a wee bit beyond his limits - but nothing so bad as to make you cringe.

Nitrous' brand of Thrash isn't particularly old school, with a cleaner, tighter style that's more associated with "modern Thrash" (and I'm not referring here to the so-called "retro-Thrash trend"). The guitar work is often done is short, razor-sharp, heavy-sounding jabs, which some people may or may not like - an acquired taste I guess. I found I liked that on some songs, not so much on others. At other times we get more "standard" playing, and that's when the music gets a little catchier (as in "let's air-guitar" catchy). Thrash that's not for the shred-crazy, but overall fun and worth looking into, especially if you're in the mood for something different.

Author: Michel Renaud
Zine: The Metal Crypt

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