With as much political disarray as we have suffered in the last few years, not just globally, but especially here in Iowa, it's a fertile temperament and time for pissed off, long-haired young thrashers to don guitars and make deadly thrash metal reminiscent of the tumultuous late ‘80s.

Cedar Rapids' own pride and joy Ill Omen have sprung forth from this languid wasteland armed with a bevy of big four thrash influences, but not without dragging it through a gauntlet of cadaverous guidance by other thrash greats like Overkill, Megadeth, Sacred Reich, and Exodus. Stream their debut album here before it releases Friday.



Ill Omen's debut full-length album March of Decay is a fun headbanging affair with songs about everything from Norse Mythology, the United States' egregious peacemaking "diplomacy," and blasting cum all over the place. So very few stones are left unturned.

The band take a heap of 80's thrash influences and twisted them into their own sound by gruffly barking primitive, death metal-esque vocals. Another thing that makes them unique is that where a lot of other thrash bands would play skanky mosh type sections, Ill Omen favor a heavier, more machinated bounce which throws me right back to Master of Puppets and Ride the Lightning. Their energetic and brazen album was captured with a powerful overall tone by well-seasoned Flat Black Studios (Nethervoid, Dryad, Telekinetic Yeti, Dead Emperors).

Grimmnight Productions present their second release with another solid thrash offering born of the barren Iowa wasteland. March of Decay is 10 tracks of pissed-off fun with the band's equally deadly demo EP Sword of Destiny added on as a bonus. The album drops March 24 on compact disc and digitally on their Bandcamp page.

Ben Smasher

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