Living through the tragedy of losing bassist Mike Alexander while on tour in 2009, Evile have battled through an extremely adverse situation to create their very own thrash opus. Five Serpent’s Teeth is decidedly darker than anything the Huddersfield four-piece have done before, still focusing on their usual strongly war-imaged themes but adding that extra-sensitive personal side to the songwriting.
The context of Evile’s situation couldn’t be more important at this moment in time. On one level, the grief of their loss is agonizingly poured from the sap of their soul and through the speakers to the listener – especially with the beautiful yet saddening In Memoriam. At a contrast, the more volcanic emotions of anger and frustration plough through the record with bombast to create some classic thrash tracks – something that Alexander would certainly have approved.
The uncompromising attitude of Dreams Of Terror frees those tortured inner demons – several megatons of unstoppable breakneck thrash assisting their aviation. To say Evile are maturing as a fine bit of British talent is probably an understatement – whether they intended it or not, they’re the main culprits identified in heading the so-called revival of British thrash. Ol Drake’s wealth of experience on lead has peaked to an exciting height of technical intensity and of course, the avid Metallica fan gives another respectful nod with Ride The Lightning-era-influenced riffing on the pounding Eternal Empire and the crowning, chugging bastion of Centurion.
Replacing Alexander, Joel Graham knew the former-bassist and is a familiar face to all members of Evile, meaning he naturally slips into the line-up to provide a sturdy foundation on his studio debut. On form to finish the album, Long Live The New Flesh crashes across a swift traditional thrashing tempo, keeping many moshers more than merry with this third attempt from the promising Brits.
Five Serpent’s Teeth shows just why thrash fans have such assured confidence and undying faith in them. Teething time is over. In the grand scheme of things, this is the pivotal record that will propel Evile to experience further success on a much wider scale.