Back in the early 1980s a shocking new genre of heavy music emerged that was louder, faster and more aggressive than anything that had come before, more importantly it refreshed a bloated, stagnating heavy metal scene led by Hard Rock dinosaurs coasting on their 70′s triumphs. Flying in the face of the establishment, spotty, teenage upstarts (predominantly from America) fused the speed and snot nosed aggression of Punk with the fast upbeat tempos, power chords and ingenious guitar solos created by New Wave Of British Heavy Metal Bands such as Iron Maiden, Saxon, Diamond Head, Venom and Angel Witch.
These pioneers of Thrash took all that was good about these bands, replaced melody with primal fury and invented a new whole new genre that proceeded to take over the world, one mosh pit at a time. The innovators, Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer and Anthrax (collectively known as the big 4) became massive stars, made millions, toured the globe and performed in cavernous arenas for hundreds and thousands of rabid thrash fans. 30 years on and Thrash Metal is still going strong, bands born in the 80′s are releasing exciting new material and the scene is as popular as ever. Long may it reign!
In order to avoid too many Metallica or Slayer albums from dominating this list I decided to limit myself to only one album per band, there have been many great thrash bands outside of the big 4 and I wanted to reflect their talents as well. A tricky task but one that led to maybe some surprising entries as opposed to all the usual subjects.
So, before you dive headfirst into this list, I’ll let Thrash Metal Legends Testament kick things off, take it away boys…..
‘Join the insanity
Or die as you fall
Into the pit!’
This article was first posted on March 18, 2013