Voivod - Killing Technology
Noise Records
Technical Thrash Metal
7 songs (39:39)
Release year: 1987
Voivod, Noise Records
Reviewed by Goat

From the moment that Killing Technology begins with strange, spacey effects and a robotic voice says 'WE ARE CONNECTED', it's clear that Voivod have taken a big step forwards from the rawness of their first two albums, condensing their manic attack into a sci-fi laser beam that took a very good band and made it a legendary one. Following on from Rrröööaaarrr, you can see the natural progression, but for the first time Voivod seem to have taken some care with their aural assault, technical riffing and sheer intensity reminiscent of some of Sabbat's finer moments. This is actually something of a transition album in the band's discography between the early rawness and the later technical prog-thrash mastery of Dimension Hatröss, and like its predecessors generally gets ignored when the mainstream Metal media cares to take note of Voivod at all.

That doesn't stop it being an absolute classic, however, sheer Thrash heaven from start to finish - Voivod may not quite be the best Canadian band ever, but they're not far behind Rush in the stakes, and you can hear hints of influence from the prog gods dotted throughout Killing Technology. Guitarist Piggy especially really broadened his style on this album, creating riffs that I have not the language to describe, not being some kind of master guitarist. Suffice it to say that it always amazes me that one guitarist can provide the sort of incredible playing that most other bands would need two to even attempt. Of course, the backing players are excellent and rarely praised in their own rights; Blacky's (perfectly audible) bass and Away's drums are more than solid, if overshadowed by the outstanding guitarwork.

All this would mean nothing were it not for the songwriting however, but the band really outdid themselves. Voivod albums tend to replicate exactly the atmosphere suggested by the cover art, from Rrröööaaarrr's deranged killing machine to Angel Rat's strange cornucopia, and Killing Technology is no different with its high-tech space travel theme, created by Away. The aforementioned robot voices on the opening title track are a wonderful touch, as are the technical piledriving sound of the band, giving exactly the sort of exciting soundtrack that heading towards an alien planet would suggest. I could write paragraphs about each track, so much is packed in - the constantly shifting, faintly ominous anger of Overreaction, with that killer bit of soloing is just one example, another being the elemental storm of Tornado. It's just impossible to pick a favourite track - they're all outstanding.

As ever, Snake makes for a wonderful frontman, his gleefully deranged yell matching the already frantic music and giving it that extra bit of propulsion. Although the songs here are all violent, storming and cathartic bits of Thrash, this is the first time in the band's career that they gave any thought to catchiness, and you can clearly discern the complex but understandable song structures. Before, you clung on for dear life as the band sped off into the distance; now, with a few listens it really feels that you're flying alongside the band as opposed to being pulled along. Killing Technology is one of those albums that you have to hear in order to really appreciate how good it is - I often find reviews of classics, mine as much as anyone's, faintly ridiculous as writers strain themselves to convey just how damn good an album is. Voivod deserve the hyperbole, however, as they're easily one of the best Thrash Metal bands in the existence of the genre, and as much as people rightfully love the Slayers and Metallicas, once you have discovered these woefully underrated Canadians and learnt to appreciate their headily intense, technical music, it's hard to look back.

Killing Songs :
All! An absolutely perfect album
Goat quoted CLASSIC
Other albums by Voivod that we have reviewed:
Voivod - The Wake reviewed by Goat and quoted 85 / 100
Voivod - Target Earth reviewed by Goat and quoted 90 / 100
Voivod - Warriors Of Ice reviewed by Goat and quoted no quote
Voivod - Negatron reviewed by Goat and quoted 72 / 100
Voivod - The Outer Limits reviewed by Goat and quoted 91 / 100
To see all 14 reviews click here
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