Today we have a banger from Berlin, Germany. Thwart are a new female-fronted melodic thrash metal band, and their debut album "Once Human" is now available! You might be thinking: What the heck do you mean, melodic thrash? Thwart set themselves apart from the norm in metal by blending genres to create a unique sound. It has both intensely fast guitar and drum parts, and intricate melodic sections in the vein of older In Flames or At The Gates. The vocals bounce between crisp, seductive highs and dark, evil growls.
"Once Human" the title track, starts off with a low and slow build, but becomes a raging thrash tune around the 2 minute mark. Secil Sen (Vocals) comes in strong with a long and powerful scream, but establishes her prowess with sung vocals during the verse sections.
"Borders" is metalcore evolved, with complex changes and chunky guitar riffing under catchy and complex vocal melody. Philipp Reif (Drums) shines on this track, with an exceptionally timed blast beat during the build to the chorus.
"Violent Self" gives off a black metal vibe, blending dissonant riffs and more blasting with the band's thrashy forward style. It's interesting to see how different one riff can be to the next one here. One moment you're getting black metal, next it's power metal. It's blended beautifully.
"Parasite" continues the genre soup, with a cool Eastern style bending guitar riff and more fast changes between heavy growls and powerful singing. Dominik Budziak (Bass) pops out in tasteful points on this track.
"Season Of Fire" has my favorite guitar solo on the record, and by now I've learned that I should basically expect anything to happen in one of these songs... but no matter what, it's going to rock.
"Enemy" has a really cool drum segue from the intro to the verse part, and shows off Benjamin Knecht and Alexander Hagemann (Guitars) in fine form with chunky riffing and lots of melody.
"World Inside" and "To The Exit" continue the great tunes, pummeling the listener with groovy killer riffs and complex vocals.
"No Way Out" is another metalcore style thrasher, with the closest thing to a breakdown that I've heard so far. I love the way the song builds, and the emotion and power in the vocals.
"Veil Yourself" ups the ante more with a fast and very heavy set of riffs along with some of the hardest growled screaming on the record, which gives way to more beautiful memorable chorus lines.
"Apocalypse" brings back the Eastern themes with layered chants and ultra fast picking. This is the first single for the album, and has a video featured on Thwart's YouTube channel.
"Illusions" finishes off the record on an epic high, with tons of energy built into the mix.
Overall, this is an amazing debut record for Thwart. It shows that they are musically diverse and incredibly capable. The mix is world class, and everything is nice and crisp. This is an insanely talented group and they've managed to hash out their own style here by mixing so many different types of metal together. One part might be a black metal sounding blast beat, the next might be a soaring chorus. This will appeal to anyone who likes heavy music. There are parts for every type of metal head on this record, and even in each song, but it's smooth and the transitions don't sound forced. This was a long record, but it felt like each song had a story to tell and each individual track held its own. There are no short half songs here, every single one pushes up to the 5 minute mark. The band could easily pick any song off this album to make into a single or a video. It's nice to listen to a fully developed full length album in a world of EPs these days. Thwart have obviously poured great time and detail into this record, the riffs ooze feeling.
Of course, you shouldn't just take my word for it, you should really go check this album out for yourself! Support the musicians and enjoy the art!
Release date: August 11th, 2018
Label: 900243 Records DK
01. Once Human (6:50)
02. Borders (5:36)
03. Violent Self (4:43)
04. Parasite (5:11)
05. Season of Fire (4:28)
06. Enemy (5:54)
07. World Inside (5:42)
08. To the Exit (4:57)
09. No Way Out (5:41)
10. Veil Yourself (5:22)
11. Apocalypse (6:04)
12. Illusions (5:26)
How to get it:
5 out of 5 Skulls