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Testament - Good Or Bad + Why?


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C'mon... "THE LEGACY" is a masterpiece! One of the best thrash albums ever. Definitely in my top 10. Unfortunately, they never matched it...

...yet I am incredibly satisfied with their latest album! 

 

Their best? Sure. A masterpiece? I can't get behind that notion at all. They've always just seemed really restrained sounding to me, trying harder to make themselves sound catchy than to go for the throat. Their leads and vocals have never been their problem, but their rhythm guitar and drum departments have always been lacking. Lots of dull beats with minimal variation and non distinct triplet riffs ad nauseum, which are at their best when the vocals or leads latch onto something really interesting to help you forget about hoe much they suffer in those areas.

 

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But the first record offers plenty of variation! It musta been Derrick Ramirez who came up with all the great riffs because afterwards they kinda became scarcer...

Seriously, I think "The Legacy" is almost flawless... Almost because Louie Clemente has never been on par with the rest of the lot... But still, I do believe that his drumming on "The Legacy" is his best! The middle of that record is very fast and menacing... I am talking about "COTLOD", "First Strike is Deadly" and "Raging Waters".

Melody is always there, especially in the solos department, but it is mostly accentuated in stuff like the midpaced "Alone in the Dark" and "Burnt Offerings".

To me "The Legacy" is downright amazing and offers great variation. Also, I fucking love the fact that it has no SOCIAL COMMENTARY bullshit at all. I'd go fantasy lyrics over preachy bullshit any day! I fucking hate how many a thrash metal band became annoyingly preachy at the tail end of the 80's! "Practice What You Preach" is the nadir of that...Are you kidding me? That itself sounds so fucking preachy! "Do what the fuck you wilt", THAT would have been a cool heavy metal Mr. Crowley title of an album and motto too! Who the hell is Chuck Billy to shout such moralizing shit? 

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Testament started out strong. The Legacy and Practice What You Preach (and a couple songs from Souls Of Black) are absolutely excellent for some classic thrash. They only sold out when they adapted a death metal sound in Dark Roots Of Earth or Formation Of Damnation. Overall, they have some excellent melodies, solos, and songs. I'd rate them good, in fact, maybe even my favorite Thrash bands.

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