Friday, September 13, 2013

Protector-Reanimated Homunculus

High Roller Records

Wow, I'm not even going to try to make sense of this band's long and confusing history. It's enough to know that the band was formed in 1986 and existed from 1986 to 2003 and then again from 2011 until now. This German band's past catalog is littered with demos, EPs, splits, compilations, a hand full of full-length studio albums and even a box set! Also, at one point it sounds as if the only person holding Protector together (in some semblance of a "band") was their drummer, Marco Pape. Oh, and also it looks as if, technically-speaking, Protector's last full-length studio album was 1993's "The Heritage". Really none of that is all that important unless you really, positively, need to know the history of this German thrash band or your life will be over. In which case I'll just say happy trails. As for everyone else? Well, this "latest" version of Protector actually grew out of the cover band "Martin Missy and the Protectors" which featured/features Martin Missy (the original vocalist of Protector) as well as guitarist Michael Carlsson (Mastema, Sadistic Grimness), bassist/vocalist Mathias Johansson (Axis Powers, Suicidal Winds) and drummer Carl-Gustav Karlsson (Grief of Emerald, ex-Author Of Pain, ex-Mastema, ex-Sarcastic, ex-Third Stone from the Sun, etc.). Despite having a sound that would have fit in nicely with the likes of Kreator, Sodom and Destruction (as well as "Zombie Attack" Tankard) the band was actually a little late to the party and were never able to break on through to the upper echelons of the German thrash scene. That's a shame to as these guys, if this new disc is anything to go by, had more then enough raw grit and piss and vinegar in their veins to stand toe to toe with the big guns! In addition to the obvious calling cards that just scream "We're a German thrash metal band!" these four guys, and their deathly take on the genre, also recall early Sepultura and even Slayer. With the exception of  "The End", which first appeared on Protector's 2000' demo "Resurrected",  I believe that all of this material was custom-crafted for inclusion on "Reanimated Homunculus". And you know what? This is actually some really good stuff that these four have created. The vocals are almost death metal in nature while the backing band-mates are keen to keep things thrashing along at a nice pace. It's a toss up which is better, the band of the singer. The thing is the guitar playing, which sports razor-like riffs, is damn fine and comes across loud and clear. It's a sweet highlight so answering such a question, which one does it better, the singer or musicians,  just isn't feasible. That doesn't matter though as it's the whole package that fans will be looking right? So, if you dig German thrash (and who doesn't!) with a hint of death metal (more like a pinch or two) then by all means, or by the gods of thunder, pick this bad boy up and never look back!

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Anonymous Dean Kaufman said...

Im glad you allow the ability to comment, but I am definitely not glad about your review. Its a bunch of back handed compliments for the most part. Protector may not have the out of this world popularity that bands like Kreator have, but they certainly were no where near what you described. They had a big impact in the teutonic metal scene and were consistent in their work for the first 6-7 years. The sheer fact that they put out an album this year is a pure miracle, especially considering how ferocious it is. I certainly haven't seen Kreator put out an album like Pleasure To Kill recently... so who is more consistent in their work? It's all about quality over quantity, even if it takes 20 years from LP to LP

1:48 PM  
Blogger Andy said...

Wow. For some reason it sounds like you've got a snake in your boots (or down your pants?)as you took my review WAY OT OF Context and then you ran that ball for all it was worth! My friend, I really liked this album and that was my point. There were no back-handed compliments despite what you seem to think. Hell, I even re-read my review a couple more times through and still have no idea where you are coming from! Is Protector as good as the Big 3 of German thrash? In my opinion no. Is this album better then a lot that has been released from the other three? Yes. That's most certainly true and easy to pick up on when hear what these guys put into these tracks. The fact that they can be compared to or even put in the same category as Destruction, Sodom, Kreator and the like say a lot about their talent which is exactly what I tried to spell out in my review. I am sorry though if I didn't gush all over them enough for you or proclaim them to be (in this new version at least) the next big thing out there (deathly-tinged thrash metal-wise). Their album is good, nice and crunchy and filled with just the right amount of rage. But it's not a masterpiece.

2:32 PM  

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