Xentrix - Shattered Existence
Xentrix were a thrash outfit out of northern England who, once upon a time, could claim dominance over the UK thrash metal scene. While this scene, in comparison to the infamous bay-area scene of the same time (mid-late 80's), it was as strong as any. Their thrash pays homage to the originals of the genre, a frilless design meant to cause total destruction. Of course, there's a humorous side to the band as well. Most of their fame came from their contraversial use of the Ray Parker "Ghostbusters" theme song as a cover; moreover, it was their "abuse" of the original Ghostbusters logo that caused a bit of an uproar. But what really matters here is their music, a refreshing blast of classic thrash where now so little exists in such form.
Shattered Existence was their debut album, having put together some demo work and such previous to it. It would turn out to be a break-out release, and for good reason. These songs take the classic examples of thrash the way the originators played it and totally honors that while making plenty of space for Xentrix to be their own band. Variety is in the riffs, where the twin-guitar attack shines through with well-played and written songs. Their sound is a fusion of early Megadeth and Metallica and darker, Slayer-esque qualities. The mood seems just a touch more depressed than your typical thrash record; whether or not that's the vocals speaking or just me is another question entirely. What I do know is that with songs like Balance of Power",Dark Enemy" and "Heaven Cent", there's no wondering why Xentrix were such fast risers during their time.
It's been years since we've heard much from the band. From what I can gather they regrouped for some sort of tour, however big or small. This might have been coincided with the release of this remastered version of the original Shattered Existence, done up with love by Metal Mind Productions. Not bad timing at any rate. Until I get to hear the albums that came after this, I'll say that they had a pretty damn good sound but nothing totally original. Shattered Existence is a pretty fun ride, and the bonus tracks on the re-issue are pretty cool; especially the well-known "Ghostbusters". To hear it in this context somehow makes it that much funnier. For a thrashing good time, check out some Xentrix, but avoid the album "Kin"...I hear (even from the bandmembers themselves) that it's worth staying away from...
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