Farscape – Purged and Forgotten (Dying Victims Productions)

Monday, 18th September 2023
Rating: 8 / 10

Ten years beyond this Brazilian quartet’s last studio outing, Farscape returns with the appropriately titled Purged and Forgotten as they probably seem like an outside, looking in underground act when it comes to the global thrash scene. Their fourth album since starting in 1998, they’ve been on domestic labels for their previous three records so gaining a boost through German label Dying Victims Productions should at least allow the band a bit more of a broader spectrum of consumers across domestic European countries. Prepare yourselves for an exercise in 80’s-oriented Teutonic thrash with a bit of left field progressive/cosmic spirit in terms of specific keyboard passages or forward-thinking rhythms to diversify the normal heads down riffs or screaming attack.

You wouldn’t expect a bluesy/jazzy stream of guitars to finish off a blistering cut like “Miss Violence” or organ strains in the middle of the adventurous opening title track – but that’s what puts this group of musicians away from the conventional Sodom/Destruction-like pack. Poisonhell and Witchcaptor as guitarists push the parameters of their riffing, lead play, and drop on a dime transitional ability – sometimes adding in a bit of a blackened or latter-day Sacrifice/Dark Angel-ish charm to keep ears piqued while Witchcaptor’s savage screams and beguiling moans fit the musical overtones like a glove. Purity, tenacity, and brutality come together as one like an angry bee swarm for “Leucotomy”, while there’s a remarkable sense of refined energy against some killer Mercyful Fate-esque guitar harmonies during “Captivity of Souls” to make these two songs standouts. The seven songs encapsulate ideas of a shorter to epic variety – the final song “Vengeance of the Forgotten” an almost ten-minute long adventure that features a Maiden-esque intro, wah-wah solo action in the early Metallica vein, an eerie mid-section with zombie-like voices before returning to more of a Teutonic thrash pace to a fitting conclusion.

This may be a case of good things coming to those who wait – as Farscape seem willing to keep their raw thrash attributes at heart, yet also inject the songs with some ominous effects or influences to separate themselves from the pack. Purged and Forgotten hopefully will give the band more fuel to get another outing prepared quicker than a decade to stoke the flames of those thrash mavens who live for the early roots of the genre.

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