DECEMBER 13th 2013
WARBRINGER: IV EMPIRE COLLAPSE
Review by Anka

Warbringer almost doesn’t need any introduction. If you live in North America, the odds are you have seen them at least once playing in your city, whether opening for other bands or headlining their own tour.  I am quite familiar with their work, and recently had the pleasure to see them perform again as an opening act for the “Legends of Thrash” tour with Kreator and Overkill.  For Warbringer, this tour comes in support of their 4th release called “Empires Collapse”, an 11-song full length that maintains the band’s trademark sound and genre experimentation, and that is nothing far from a good modern thrash release.

I find that “IV Empires Collapse” emphasizes the technical and the melodic side a bit more than usual, through a crazy carousel of catchy riffs, while preserving the fast pace we are well used to hearing on the bands’ releases. And then when you expect it less, it gets even faster without compromising the melodic side. The guitar work is highly enjoyable, whether acoustic or electric, during the verse or the solo parts.  

Warbringer definitely likes to experiment and throw in some unique elements in the mix: we can hear black metal inspired passages, technical death metal like verse sections etc.  There are times when it sounds like classic death metal but even so, it doesn’t go far from the thrashing realm, especially since the excruciating vocals are probably the only constant element in this whole thrash equation. Dynamic, aggressive, this album rolls out with a lot of rhythm changes, crunchy riffing and catchy elements and I promise it will not bore you.  Maybe some fans would prefer more straight up, ballsy thrash metal – personally, I think there’s more variety here and there’s nothing vital compromised in the whole soundscape.

I can actually say this album keeps my interest in Warbringer quite high.  This is not your regular thrash band resurrecting old school formulas. Warbringer certainly manage to blend both old school and modern thrash elements very well. I think the new album is a courageous step and it’s very well done, also very entertaining, hopefully fans love it as well.