Annihilator - All For You
AFM Records
Thrash/Speed Metal
10 songs (55.59)
Release year: 2004
Annihilator, AFM Records
Reviewed by Aleksie
Sounds like the mounties have been taking a beating among the forests of Canada. Foolish stereotypes aside, Jeff Waters and his renewed crew of headbangers are here again to spread joy and thrashing among us. Once again the vocalist has been changed, this time out went Joe Comeau and enter newcomer Dave Padden. Although the loss of a great vocalist like Comeau is a shame, Padden is too bad of a vocalist himself. His voice is extremely peculiar, as I cant really think of anyone that it might closely resemble. He mostly sings in a pretty low, gravely voice with plenty of conviction especially in the shouts. In any case, he fits the material here well. Also returning to the bands fold is Set The World On Fire-era drum master Mike Mangini, also of Steve Vai fame. As far as the music goes, this album is mostly top-notch, with a few minor exceptions.

The album opening title track is an OK mid-tempo rocker, nothing that special. Then one of the real gems appear in the form of Doctor Psycho, a sadistically funny tale of a physician who mutilates his patients. This track is simply awesome, a great mix of black humour and devastatingly speedy thrash. My neck is still feeling this song since the first time it picked up the pace in my ears and started thrashing. A definite mosh-pit favourite if the band (hopefully) decides to play this song live. The nicely melodic harmony riffing in the middle gives the tune a great hook. Demon Dance keeps up the mayhem including some very nice soloing and even some humorous death growls. The ending of the song with the joking vocal effects and laughter shows that these guys aren’t taking their thing too seriously, witch is just the way it should be. Then comes a pretty controversial song for me, the first single The One. As I have said, I generally like ballads, but this is a mixed one. The acoustic melodies are great, Paddens voice is great and emotional but the lyrics are just…..well, lets say too sugary for me. The lyrics could be straight off of a Backstreet Boys album and I wouldn’t know the difference. Call me cooky, but when an Annihilator song starts going “na-naa-na-na-naa”, I get the feeling like somethings not right. I have no doubts that everything on the song wouldnt be heart-felt and honest, but its just me here. Its a pretty mixed thing, cause some of it sounds very good, and some of it pretty horrid. Bled thankfully picks up the pace again with excellent pieces of pure thrash, with a few modern twitches here and there. Both Of Me is also among the best tunes here, all eight minutes of it that is. A very interesting song, mixing acoustic guitars here and there with raging thrash riffs. Very cool sing-along-chorus included, mind you.

Then its time for the real adrenaline shot of speed metal on the record – Rage Absolute. Doesnt the name alone just hint that its going to be a great song? Furiously speedy, heavy as shit, full of aggression – now this is metal. Its difficult to see how Waters´ wrists have endured playing this song, the riffing is murderous. This song could kill half of the stuff on Reign In Blood – its just that damn good. And its catchy among all this with a great chorus. Another mosh-pit destroyer. The second ballad here, Holding On is thankfully less packed with saccharine but the vocal performance isn’t as convincing on this one. The beautiful clean guitar melodies thankfully save the song from obscurity. The extremely well named The Nightmare Factory starts with nice haunting effected guitar picking and then chrushes into a good mid-paced song. The album closer The Sound Of Horror is a five-minute instrumental, that is a bit mediocre, in the sense that as an instrumental, it doesn’t have anything that memorable. In my view leaving it off would have taken nothing away from this album. Oh yeah, and the very Alice In Hell -type cover photo gives me some sweet nostalgic vibes. I like that.

The production is top notch with especially the guitar sounds being very crisp and heavy. As a whole, this album definitely ends up on the positive side of metal. If you mostly want excellent ballads that are more enjoyable than oversweet, mostly forget about this one and go buy the new Black Label Society album. But if you want a record with several slabs of fist-pumping, head-swinging, mind-lifting, speedy heavy metal, All For You is definitely all for you.

Killing Songs :
Doctor Psycho, Demon Dance, Bled, Both Of Me, Rage Absolute and The Nightmare Factory
Aleksie quoted 78 / 100
Jeff quoted 68 / 100
Other albums by Annihilator that we have reviewed:
Annihilator - Feast reviewed by Thomas and quoted 78 / 100
Annihilator - Metal reviewed by Aleksie and quoted 75 / 100
Annihilator - Schizo Deluxe reviewed by Aleksie and quoted 80 / 100
Annihilator - Refresh The Demon reviewed by Brent and quoted 80 / 100
Annihilator - King Of The Kill reviewed by Brent and quoted 81 / 100
To see all 12 reviews click here
2 readers voted
Your quote was: 10.
Change your vote

There are no replies yet to this review
Be the first one to post a reply!