Death Angel

Archives and Artifacts

  • AllMusic Rating
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Coming up from the same Bay Area metal scene that spawned the likes of Metallica and Exodus, Death Angel carved out a niche for themselves with a style of thrash metal that also included traces of prog. And while they never received the same amount of attention as their aforementioned "big brothers" did, Death Angel built a loyal cult following and earned quite a few video spins on Headbangers Ball during the late '80s/early '90s. Less than a year after the release of Death Angel's first studio album in over a decade (2004's Art of Dying) came a three-disc box set of rarities, Archives and Artifacts. Focusing entirely on the group's early years, the set contains remastered and expanded editions of their first two albums (considered by many to be among thrash metal's finest), 1987's The Ultra-Violence and 1988's Frolic Through the Park, as well as a third disc of previously unreleased material. The main attraction here, though, is the first ever official release of the group's "Kill as One" demos from 1986 (the tracks "Thrashers," "Kill as One," and "The Ultra-Violence"), which were produced by none other than Kirk Hammett of Metallica. While the material here is certainly not as groundbreaking as Metallica, it did stack up very well against the competition at the time -- tracks such as "Voracious Souls" and "Bored" merge together melodic, Joey Belladonna-esque vocals with Iron Maiden-esque rhythms. And in addition to all the music, the set comes with a DVD collection of rare performances and early promo videos. Archives and Artifacts is a smorgasbord for fans of '80s thrash metal.

blue highlight denotes track pick