Potraits Of Dismay

Bunker 66

BUNKER 66 are a blackened thrash metal band with aspects of speed metal in there […]
February 28, 2024

BUNKER 66 are a blackened thrash metal band with aspects of speed metal in there too, the band themselves are a trio and have been together since their formation in 2007 so they are certainly no strangers to the black metal scene. They hail from the country of Italy and they have since released an EP in 2009 titled OUT OF THE BUNKER as this raised a lot of eyebrows as it very much attracted a lot of listeners, despite the band only starting out. Then two years later they released a live album titled ALIVE AND MELTING in 2011 which compiled a few new tracks with tracks off their EP, the following year they combined forces with another band to release a split album in 2012. But that same year was the right time for the blackened thrash speed metal trio to release their debut album titled INFERNÖ INTERCEPTÖRS containing eight tracks altogether.

 This album was what really put their name out there and became more recognised, two years after this in 2014, their second album was set for release titled SCREAMING ROCK BELIEVERS as this album as well as their debut album were released in conjunction with High Roller Records. The trio did two compilation albums as well as another split album two years later in 2016,  but when 2017 came around, it was time once more for the band’s third album titled CHAINED DOWN IN DIRT gaining a lot of positive reviews. Then in 2019, came two more split albums, then two years after in 2021, came the arrival of their fourth studio album titled BEYOND THE HELP OF PRAYERS gaining a lot of praise, after this a couple more split albums followed on with a compilation album throughout 2021, 2022 and 2023.

 The new year of 2024 has seen the band bring a split album however we shall have a look at the band’s compilation album titled PORTRAITS OF DISMAY which came out in late 2023, which contains eighteen tracks altogether. This compilation album brings together a collection of songs that were on various releases the band has already made, so let's go straight into it with the first track titled “We Guys Are From Hell” as a wolf howls to begin with. Then a frenzied attack of guitars, vocals and drums do come in together as one unit, the vocalist raises his voice when there is a climactic point for when drums cause more of a stir. Then halfway through there is an evil laugh, as we press on for more thrash metal at its finest dashed with layers of black metal also, we can hear that in the guitars and vocals.

 As we hear a drum patterns and guitar riffs firing on all cylinders for the last minute or so of the first track, we can go into the second track which is “Tombatron and Tormentor” as guitar starts off this one with drums also surging underneath along with vocals full of rage and anguish especially with that howl at the beginning. The guitars and drums especially are tormenting the listener in such a way that the black metal aspects are carefully heard as well, guitar really drives this track mostly, as drums vary its rhythm over time and vocals tend to step back when it is required. In comes the next track which is “Global Thermonuclear War”, as we hear drums and guitars come in first with vocals following along after as the tempo is fast and vicious.

 As the track progresses on we come to a more calmer section with a vocal howl, as drums pull back to a more steady approach, guitars following to this new tempo and then there is a sudden blister of full unison, as we are rushed towards the next track which is “Psychopharmax Convulsions”. This is merely a very short track which is a cover of another track that was originally written by a band called CONVULSED, as cymbals count in this track before shredding guitars tear their way with drums as well as bass guitar so quick and precise. The next track is “The Merciless March” as drums cue this one in from the off, as guitars join in as a way of sharing the driving seat, as vocals come and go just so the listener knows they are still lurking around ready to dominate in their own way when needed.

 Fasten your seatbelts for the lightning bolt of drum fills and guitars that play such mesmerising solo riffs, high in pitch and in a vibrato effect or perhaps fast picking with guitar notes. Then another tempo increase, with drums and guitars, as drums devastate the audio spectrum as vocals howl one last time before the next track comes which is “The Force”. This sixth track is frightening and the lower end of the tone of guitars as well as drums comes to the fore, lashing out with vocals also making a good contribution, even halfway through drums strike those cymbals with vengeance and tenacity. A guitar solo comes in after this so the track certainly has all the makings of a well arranged track full of variety which is such a great addition to this compilation album.

 “Hellish Hordes Rise” comes next as pulsating drums and guitars rush in like a jet, vocals poured over like a hot and spicy topping, as they are ominous but courageous. Some fabulous drumming with cymbals and fast paced patterns, as lead guitar goes wild or off the scales, but in such a sadistic and moment of madness to really give this three minute track a great finish. “Winds Of Damnation” as the tempo slows right down to a slow but cool headed psychedelic rock style song, but then the door to the next sections gets kicked in by drums and guitars once more with a big thump. Vocals again as aggressive as before, so there is no let downt there, same goes with lead guitars extraordinary solo playing, anyway we now move on into the next track, titled “Total Possession”.

 The ninth track is very much the same tempo as fast to start with, guitars and drums driving the band on as the tempo slows down again as we come to the halfway point of the track. Clear cut drums and guitars are well arranged but then back into the carnage as we refer back to the faster section we heard at the start, with a nice drum closure. “Army Of The Dark” is in motion as drums and guitar set the pace, which is a bit slower than before, still going like a blackened thrash metal band would go, as drums put the foot down and guitars accompany along the way. Tempo slows down briefly before the next track comes in which is “Midnight Vision”, a real umph in the vocals with more deadly guitars as well as smashing drums all on course in the fast lane as before.

 Drums are just hitting the nail on the head, with such creativity and dynamics as well, guitar going beyond the call of duty with sensational solo playing. As the tempo is consisten, the drums really do command this, as before the closing section, the tempo doubles up after a slower section was played just before. So into the next track which is “Into The Chasm Of Death”, as we head into an average tempo where it is not slow or very fast so in between, vocals coming in as before with disgust and dismay, as guitars play along with the drums. The lead guitar performs some vasy tasty and delightful solo notes, with that vibrato effect also in play, some interesting drum pattern further on in as we approach the next track.

 Up next is “Male Supremacy” a song that is a cover of a band named CARNIVORE; with cunning drums and melodic guitar playing, very much on the rise but also switching pace or tempo as the drums directs this element of the track. So further on into the track, vocals come in as they have some delay maybe or reverb effect, nevertheless still very effective in terms of the tone of this track. The tempo picks up with crashing cymbals, but settles down again when vocals return, lead guitar produces a nice solo section with drums accompanying, so we can head into the next track which is “Pandemonial Storms”. The start is of grinding guitars and charging drums as vocals are overseeing all that is underneath them, there is some relly catchy guitar riffs as well as destructive drums punishing the track with force.

 “Mellhammer” as it runs off on a chase as all instruments go at it together as one unit, smash and grab as we could call it, drums especially violently shatters the space between them and guitars as well as vocals. Backing vocals do come in too, as they add a somewhat a black metal soundscape or atmosphere, as he tempo does change to a slower pace but then back to full on hardcore hysteria as we head onwards into the next track which is “Sulphurous Lust”. Guitars and drums open this track at one tempo but then speed up into a more blistering rhythm, as the drums set the tempo changes, with guitar and vocals just following along, before a juicy guitar solo later on in the track. Even the sudden dip in guitar tone adds a nice texture in this section, moving on there is just a straight-forward ascension of a full band unison until we hit the next track.

“Doctor Rock” is a cover of a well known song original written by rock legends MOTORHEAD as we can certainly hear all there is to be heard as drums really pack a punch as well as guitars cutting through as vocals have the mean and intimidating voice of despair. So a great track and also a great cover of a song by a well known band, so onto the finale of this compilation which is another cover tiled “The Possibility Of Life’s Destruction”, as this was a song written by a band called DISCHARGED. A complete run for the hills type of song, as it pulsates with all instruments firing on all cylinders, a superb finish at least, so overall this is a great compilation of tracks, showcasing the band’s past collection of hits over the years. A great listen for those into thrash and/or black metal, or if you’re mad into blackened thrash then do take a listen to these guys for sure.

6 / 10

Had Potential








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"Potraits Of Dismay" Track-listing:

1. We Guys Are From Hell

2. Tombatron And Tormentor

3. Global Thermonuclear War

4. Psychopharmax Convulsions (Convulsed Cover)

5. The Merciless March

6. The Force

7. Hellish Hordes Rise

8. Winds Of Damnation

9. Total Possession

10. Army Of The Dark

11. Midnight Vision

12. Into The Chasm Of Death

13. Male Supremacy (Carnivore Cover)

14. Pandemonial Storms

15. Mellhammer

16. Sulphurous Lust

17. Doctor Rock (Motorhead Cover)

18. The Possibilities Of Life’s Destruction (Discharge Cover)


Bunker 66 Lineup:

Damien Thorne - Vocals and Bass Guitar

J.J. Priestkiller - Guitars

Dee Dee Altar - Drums

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