Municipal Waste

The Art of Partying

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After quite literally bursting onto the early 2000s heavy metal scene with their 2003 debut's heady resurrection of classic thrash and crossover, Municipal Waste proved they were no novelty act with their wildly entertaining successor, Hazardous Mutation, setting up no small expectation for album number three, 2007's curiously named The Art of Partying. However, wary listeners need not fear that this title means Andrew W.K. was crashing at the band's studio, or interfering with popular producer Zeuss (Shadows Fall, Hatebreed, etc.), who was brought on board to mix in even more muscle and energy into the Richmond, VA quartet's template. Rather, Municipal Waste have now fully embraced the aggressive but good-humored tactics of classic Anthrax, and the sounds of 1985's Spreading the Disease, in particular, which '80s-flavored thrash nuggets like "Mental Shock," "Sadistic Magician," and "Rigorous Vengeance," replicate to eerie perfection, thanks to added background gang-shouts. The post-hardcore spirits of D.R.I. and S.O.D. also pervade the album's overall sense of urgency and brevity, while the specter of early Suicidal Tendencies reveals itself when the band slows things down for the intro to "The Inebriator," as well as in the conversational comedy bits heard in "Beer Pressure." Luckily, The Art of Partying's modern, ultra-thrash intensity still helps to identify it as a product of the 2000s, not the '80s, and Municipal Waste boast enough songwriting imagination to comfortably refute the inevitable copycat claims. Plus, even the most cynical of listeners will have to admit that the 20-year statute of limitations has already expired for making such accusations, anyway -- let the party begin! [The CD was also released with two bonus tracks.]

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