ReviewsIreful – Agents of Doom (Xtreem Music)

Ireful – Agents of Doom (Xtreem Music)

Often musicians from other metal genres unite under the umbrella of another cause – willing to spread their wings for the love of a specific style. That’s the case here for Italian quartet Ireful. They started in 2019, containing members with experience in grindcore unit Eraser, heavy metal act Hellraiders, and death metal outfit Daemonokrat among others – poised to deliver classic thrash from a slightly Bay Area meets domestic sophisticated manner. Their first EP The Walls of Madness released in 2021 had multiple physical releases across all parts of the globe, setting the stage for this follow-up album Agents of Doom.

Expectations rise when you hear a foundation rooted in semi-progressive riffs, drop on a dime tempo shifts, plus a power, crunchy riff attack with a fierce vocal presence that holds these energetic songs together to align well in the late 80s brigade of influences. The dual rhythms, stop/start riff action, and paint melting lead breaks courtesy of M. Thunderbolt and F. MadPig easily capture your ears from first exposure to thunderous, gallop-driven affairs such as “Exiles of Metal” or the title track. Exotic textures or technical intricacies appear next to transitions that will go from up-tempo speed burning pace to mid-tempo, pit-moving action, where the gang-like choir background vocal components add another layer of unity to the proceedings. Malicious intent pours through the main raspy meets vengeful vocals of bassist A. Medusa – definitely channeling a mix of old Steve ‘Zetro’ Souza, Don Doty, and a bit of Sean Killian from Vio-lence when you hear the two-minute barnburner “Ireful” or Teutonic-oriented speed madness that is “A.B. Normal” that could rip flesh from bone, the transitions ready-made for stage diving or relentless head banging. “Blackhearted Master” could be the outlier track for the record, a 6:26 epic containing a circular opening power riff that sets the stage for some left-field, Voivod-like ambiance before returning to normal thrash and bash proceedings, thick progressive bass parts pushing this into Metallica meets latter day Dark Angel territory.

Those who love a primal approach to thrash with down to earth production values will be very pleased with Agents of Doom from Ireful. It’s as if you are taking a trip back to 1987-1989, guaranteed to mow down any naysayers on the path to thrash nirvana.

Ireful on Facebook

8 / 10