Evile : Five Serpent’s Teeth

They Say :- Five Serpent’s Teeth is resounding proof that Evile can live up to their reputation as the country’s best underground metal band and take it to the next level.  More than just a Yorkshire-based thrash band, Evile show off their killer skill on this third album, which takes the listener on a journey from the infectious, heavy and riff-packed “Cult” to the beautiful “In Memorium” in memory of former bassist Mike Alexander.  Once again produced by Russ Russell and recorded at Parlour Studios in Kettering, Five Serpent’s Teeth will be released through Earache Records on September 29th, 2011 in the UK and Europe.

Before We Start :- Pre-release “leaks” of albums onto the internet are a bad thing for bands and record labels. Lots of people getting the album for nothing ahead of the official release is obviously going to have an impact on sales. To identify the source of these leaks most pre-release promos are digitally watermarked. This means that copies that show up on torrent sites can be traced back to their origin. Stops us wannabe-journo types spreading stuff around.

There is, however, another thing that the labels do and that is to issue promos that are beeped as well as watermarked. Now, if I’m honest, given the volume of stuff that arrives at CB beeped promos are only just behind untagged MP3s in the dislikes list but in a day when a leaked album can be all around the world in a matter of minutes the labels have to do something….

We Say :- Evile are undoubtedly one of the hottest properties in the expanding UK thrash scene. The unholy alliance they formed with legendary producer Russ Russell (Napalm Death, Dimmu Borgir, Oaf) spawned Infected Nations in 2009 and they have reunited with the bearded one for this, the band’s third album. Having seen them live a few times in the past couple of years I was really looking forward to hearing what they’d come up with this time around…

Well, mark this one down as “expectations exceeded”. The album opener, the title track Five Serpent’s Teeth, immediately demonstrates that Evile have not been standing still since Infected Nations and everything is just bigger, better, faster and generally more. This is thrash metal in the traditional vein, pure and simple and it demonstrates that the band have lost none of their technical edge or their ability to write a proper thrash melody. Matt Drake’s vocals are (as usual) perfectly suited to the music and the guitar work is exactly what you would expect from a band who have honed their skills in countless live performances.

Another noticeable bonus is that as you go through the tracks on this album is how well Evile avoid the pitfall of sounding like one or other of the big-4. Whereas many of their peers are undeniably Megadeth-esque or Slayer-esque or whatever, Evile have produced a much more subtle blend of influences and deliver it with a musical tightness that the biggest of the big-4 can only dream of. By the time you are two tracks in it’s clear that this is something really, really special.

Although this is an album which is full of near-perfect Thrash the track that stands out for me, as is so often the case, is the one which is most atypical. Lots of Thrash bands (both old and new) have done the slow-things-right-down bit with varying levels of success, but I have never heard it done as well as it is for In Memoriam, a song in memory of their late bassist Mike Alexander. Brilliant, moving stuff.

Things don’t stay slowed down for long though, and Descent Into Madness is one of those tracks that you just know is going to leave you with a very sore neck when you hear it live. If Metallica had stayed good instead of getting all

*beeeeeeeeep*

this is the sort of thing they would be doing now 😉

With Five Serpent’s Teeth Evile have staked a place in the Thrash elite. I really can’t find much to fault this one on. I guess in summary I’d have to say this is a stone cold classic Thrash metal album, end of story.