Deathrider ‎– Requiem

Not On Label ‎– none
Cassette, Album

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Produced by Deathrider and James Walsh
Recorded at Metro Studios, Minneapolis Minnesota
Engineered by Tommy Tucker
Cover by Bosch


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February 1, 2015

As far as early 90s albums go, this one seems to have been born about 6 years too late given that one of the first parallel albums that comes to mind is Megadeth’s “Killing Is My Business…And Business Is Good”. This one begins with a similarly haunting classical piano intro and spends the better part of its duration speeding away something fierce. “Requiem” is basically one of those albums that try to go forward by looking back, and there’s a little bit of everything going on from Iced Earth style galloping to straight up Metallica worship of the “Kill ‘Em All” variety. It falls a bit in reaching the heights of early Testament or Heathen, but it’s pretty clear that that is what this thing was going for.
Nevertheless, when this album really gets going, it slays with all the fury of a full blown speed/thrash assault, spearheaded by a series of flashing riff monsters in “Burn Victim”, “Feel The Pain” and “Manslaughter” that sort of come as quickly as they go. The rapid fire yells of vocalist Phillip Patton border on unintelligible and lean towards a hardcore yell. Basically the overall vocal job shuns any notion of variety or intrigue and leaves most of the heavy lifting to the guitars, particularly during the frequent shred solos that interweave with the instrumental breaks. The principle influence here is definitely the unfettered fury of early Slayer with a tiny bit of NWOBHM induced shredding, at times managing to be coherent but otherwise just piling on notes and adding to the chaos.
Occasionally this thing slows down and shows a deeper, heavier side to this band as is the case on “”The Gate” (the longest song on here), but by and large this is a pretty one-dimensional experience. Anyone who has heard anything out of the genre from either the east or west coast will know what to expect here, be it the rank and file Exodus fanatic or the Megadeth junkie. It’s a pity that this band didn’t get a little more traction before fading into obscurity because they definitely had the potential to cut heads with a number of second tier acts and come out on top, but sadly it was just a matter of not having the right timing. By 1991 being a traditional thrash band became anathema to anything that would get signed, leaving this group of maniacal Minnesotans out in the cold. In a sense, “Requiem” proves to be a fitting name for a life that all but never was, may it rest in peace.