Godsnake – Eye For An Eye (Massacre Records)Friday, 12th May 2023
It’s exciting for writers to chart the development of a band over the course of years – even if its in the early stages of one’s career. Already privy to Godsnake’s debut album Poison Thorn released in the fall of 2020, we now shift gears to the sophomore outing Eye For An Eye. Intertwining influences across the groove/thrash metal spectrum with a modern touch, it’s evident that this quintet possesses adequate knowledge plus proper execution over quite a broad spectrum of material across the board to ensure maximum entertainment value.
Hunger bursts from the hefty riffs of guitar duo Stevo and Pepe Pierez – providing chunky hooks with bluesy/southern groove swagger, consistently metal to the bone. Most listeners will be hard pressed not to bob, weave, and cavort spasmodically to the monster hooks plus supplementary tasty licks they supply throughout “I Fear Nothing” or semi-locomotive, thrashier “Nails In My Bed”. The hard-hitting “Story of a Ghost” is a thunderous, crunchy affair featuring guest support from Onslaught guitarist Wayne Dorman ripping out a frantic lead break, vocalist Torger stretching his militant, melodic bark into special acts of tormented distortion at times. And with Torger the band has that special ace in the hole quality – his knack for knowing how to hit the right melodies from verse to chorus and back, in that memorable assimilation of say 90’s/2000’s James Hetfield meets Peavy of Rage brings the title track and staccato/stunted anthem “Illuminated” into rarified territory where instant positive takeaways occur. The ethereal circular guitar passages build momentum as bassist The Walt and drummer Sidney lock into this mid-tempo groove component for “The Sickening”, marrying aspects of Machine Head, Sevendust, and Teutonic contemporaries like Brainstorm over this transformative, bouncy six-minute opener. The lyrical content is versatile as well, covering everything from victims of abuse to vigilantism, brutalization of humanity, and even the thoughts of losing love in an emotional overload manner.
Many artists use a wide array of influences to establish their own take on what metal means to them. Godsnake as a melodic thrash metal group through Eye For An Eye traverses the groove/modern platforms brilliantly, creating catchy material that has enough diversity, power, and potency to gather multiple generations in a variety of subgenres. Let’s hope more buzz creates bigger touring/festival opportunities globally.