Vintage thrash metal was considered to be a dead dinosaur by many during the '90s, as grunge (Alice in Chains), power metal (Pantera), nu-metal (Korn), and rap-metal (Rage Against the Machine) seemed to all but bury the aforementioned metallic style. But by the early 21st century, countless groups rediscovered the likes of Exodus, Metal Church, and Testament, as thrash metal came roaring back from the dead. Case in point, Fueled by Fire, and their 2007 debut for Metal Blade (a label that almost single-handedly launched thrash in the first place), Spread the Fire. Down-picked crunchy riffs, galloping rhythms, shredding solos, shouted vocals, tasteless album cover art -- yep, you know the deal by now -- and song titles that absolutely scream "THRASH METAL!" ("Massive Execution," "Command of the Beast," etc.). And the group (all of whom dress like it's still 1987 -- as seen on the CD's back cover) appear willing to die by their stylistic sword, as evidenced by "Thrash Is Back" and "Metal Forever." If you want ground-breaking metallic sounds, this is not the place. But for familiar, authentic thrash, Fueled by Fire are your new go-to guys.
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AllMusic Review by Greg Prato