I’m not sure what is going on down in Columbia, but as far as Thrash Metal is concerned, it is clear that the country has some of the best underground bands on the planet! – Fire, Psycho Mania, Subversion, Athor, Agony…the list is endless! And in 2018, rising out of Bogota D.C like a behemoth to be reckoned with, we have Perpetual Warfare!
Formed in 2005 by the Munoz brothers, Perpetual Warfare have been plying their Thrash trade for quite some time – releasing two full lengths (2009 – Justica, Libertad Y Decadencia and ’13s The Age of War) prior to the current album in question here. Both albums were and are extremely serviceable Old School Thrash affairs – rudimentary in delivery with passable production qualities. Clearly a whole lot of growth has occurred in the five years since ‘Age of War’ because the new one – cleverly entitled ‘Earthliens’ – is set to see Perpetual Warfare enter the big league! Now, i’m all for a raw underground no-frills thrash production but THIS…wow, what a step-up in sound and overall presentation. The production on this is magnificent!
While the production values is the most obvious component of ‘Eartliens’ and the bands improvement, it would be a mistake to ignore the marked strides the band has made in all facets of their music. There is a fantastic air of confidence in their creative song writing, their musicianship and delivery. Evidently, Perpertual Warfare have jumped to a whole new level in terms of sophistication and professionalism. Minnows in the Thrash word no longer – They just sound so fucking huge now!
The most exciting thing about ‘Eartliens’ is its unbridled energy and song oriented approach. A torrent of riffs fly by thick and fast on this album, encapsulating all that is great about the bands influences like Slayer/Kreator/Death and Testament. However, if there is one band (and person) that shines brightly throughout this 30 odd minute romp, it’s early period Megadeth in the riffage and Dave Mustaine in the lead work. There is a intricate technical element about PW’s riff delivery that recalls the Peace Sells/So Far era albums and if the lead play from Steve Layton heard on tracks such as ‘Alienacion’ and ‘Hum-Antz’ isn’t Mustaine influenced, then I do not know my Metal.
Earthliens is also a very consistent album – the song writing is strong, flowing with creative riff ideas and playful lead work. The energy and passion of the band’s music is doubly compounded via the aggressive razor blade vocal attack from Carmilo Munoz – a vicious and scathing approach is applied as he espouses about the ills of a corrupt society across all 10 tracks. Last but by no means least, it would be remiss if the absolutely full throttle snare pounding performance of Wilson Munoz was not mentioned. Wow, does he slay that kit – nothing too technical is needed for the band’s style, just wop, wop, wop ’til death!
Perpertual Wafare have raised the Columbian Thrash stakes with ‘Earthliens’. It is easily one of the most professional sounding thrash albums I have heard from this country. Having said that, it is also one of the best thrash albums of 2018. Repeated listening will be mandatory such is its infectious energy and delivery. South American thrash- It seriously kicks ass!