01. Dis Morta 02. Feeding Frenzy 03. The Radical 04. Power 05. Hyper Reality 06. Creating The Abyss 07. Straight Razor 08. Chasing Mercury 09. Devil In The Mirror 10. Judas
If you love thrash metal, you really need to hear this thing. TOXIK were one of many worthy thrash bands that fell through the cracks and missed their shot as the genre stumbled to its post-"Black Album" denouement at the dawn of the '90s. Wildly technical and proudly rich in the potent melodies of progressive metal, albums like "World Circus" (1987) and "Think This" (1989) were cult hits but commercial dead ends, and TOXIK were over and done by 1992.
Guitarist Josh Christian clearly views his band's brief but memorable past glories as a case of unfinished business: 33 years on from their last full-length album, the New Yorkers' intermittent reunions since 2013 have mutated into a lethal new line-up (with only Christian remaining from the old days) and a new album that obliterates the majority of genre competition, both back then and right now. Seatbelts may be required.
Jaw-shattering proof that TOXIK circa 2022 are definitely not in the business of fucking around, opener "Dis Morta" is breathlessly intense, almost to the point of being funny. It has all of the band's trademark manic energy, but with a ton of cutting-edge sonic weight backing it up and levels of musicianship that make those early albums sound scrappy and ragged in comparison. That was all part of the charm of thrash metal's first few waves, of course, but Christian's desire to make this reunion matter has rescued this comeback album from all kinds of needless retro posturing. Songs like "Feeding Frenzy" and "Straight Razor" contain a huge amount of musical information, but everything is delivered with such immaculate precision that the whole crew audibly moves and shreds as one.
At times startling in its brutality, this 45-minute rollercoaster ride is also dense with melodic ideas, whether expressed through melted-fret fireworks or via frontman Ron Iglesias' magnificently over-the-top vocals. Either hammering away at absurd speeds, millimeter-perfect in design and deed, or firing off the kind of wildly cocky ensemble syncopation, TOXIK sound nothing like some hoary old band from the foggy past. Listen to the cudgeling bombast of "Power" or the turbocharged speed metal bar brawl of "Devil In The Mirror" and witness the sound of an underappreciated phoenix rising from the ashes and taking the fight to the floor. By any standards, ancient or modern, "Dis Morta" is a badass piece of work.
BLABBERMOUTH.NET uses the Facebook Comments plugin to let people comment on content on the site using their Facebook account. The comments reside on Facebook servers and are not stored on BLABBERMOUTH.NET. To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).