The Virus Has Spread is the debut record of the North East’s very own Fallen Fate. Spinning this album a number of times brings the same reassuring conclusions about the four-piece. One – that this is an extraordinary initial attempt and two – it’s a record that could quite possibly restore the faith of anyone disillusioned with the rarity of belting thrash acts in the region.
Insurrection boldly surrounds us with an atmospheric feel that takes you to the bunker of a WWI trench before duelling guitars gather pace – all working intricately to a crescendo of rumbling riffs that crash into a bruising thrash tempo in second track Downfall.
The recurring weather sound effects only solidify the album’s dark, brooding atmosphere while the extra symphonic keys make a huge difference. Rather than pound away in an amateur fury of hell-obsessed aggression, Fallen Fate project so much more – a powerful, grandiose soundscape that engulfs the listener with a flurry of technical climaxes.
Speaking of axes, lead guitarist Piers Donno Fuller is clearly a seasoned player that has the musical intelligence to shred with a sharp awareness of exactly where he’s putting his fingers. Descendancy is the epitome of his work and up there for one of the tracks of the year with its almost blackened nature. Pendulum hears guest vocals from Onslaught’s Sy Keeler, giving the band extra vocal dynamics.
Production on this record is sublime too. It’s a job handled by the band themselves, but nevertheless a one that they’ve absolutely nailed. Slowing to their head-slinging, palm-mute mosh riffs and juicy crushing breakdowns, the newcomers still keep their vivacity by subtly cross pollinating styles in a mix that consistently and naturally refreshes itself.
This could the very album that assists you on many a dark, chilly night on the way back from the pub. The virus might not have spread just yet, but when it does, there will be no antidote for a galleon of thrashers gyrating in unison to the sounds of Fallen Fate.