Mass Confusion

Dust Bolt

And when the apocalyptic dust settles, all that shall be left are the towers built […]
By Anton Sanatov
September 3, 2016
Dust Bolt - Mass Confusion album cover

And when the apocalyptic dust settles, all that shall be left are the towers built by Metal Gods...and a few genetically resilient Rock Stars.

Thrash Metal has a very particular constitution; it simply seeks to destroy. Once that shredding vortex opens up its palm-muted mouth, annihilation is its prerogative. Catharsis takes on a whole new meaning, for the seizing bodies within the pit are barely able to hold onto their whipping heads let alone concentrate on working through some negative emotion.  Full commitment is required, for it is a genre of absolute resolve, and on "Mass Confusion", DUST BOLT's most recent offering, the German quartet most certainly demonstrates their devotion to the movement, even if it is somewhat obvious in its intentions.

DUST BOLT commence this blitzkrieg with "Sick X Brain", barely giving the feedback a chance to ring before ripping through their amps with old-fashioned Thrash riffing. You know the drill: the E string doesn't get a single chance to breathe and the pick turnover is in the hundreds; this is a Thrasher's deluxe. Tracks like "Mass Confusion", "Turned To Grey" and "Empty Faces" (one of my favourites) reiterate the statements of the opening track with more slick riffs, muscle-building picking, incoming dive bombs and frenzied solos that zip up the body bags.

There is also a lot of groove present in these tracks. From the tastily menacing chugged breakdowns to the rumbling riffs of tracks like "Allergy" and the humorously introduced "Mind The Gap" this record is not simply a hurricane of mindless masturbation but a grind of crafted motion. And although it lacks much melody - it is a Thrash record after all - the band still manage to assemble their riffs in such a way so as to provide structured resolution to their tracks; which in turn provides them with a harmonious touch. In addition to that, the presence of acoustics and clean tones on tracks like the poignant "Exit" (one of the finest ballads I've heard in recent times) and the blissfully jazzy "Masters Of War" do indeed give this record the edge that helped the great Thrash bands of the past stand out in the denim crowd.

The production is solid. Yes, it may be a touch compressed and the mix does mush the instruments together too closely in certain parts, but the sound is nonetheless perfect for the given genre and retains that very old-fashioned Thrash aesthetic that is characteristic of the band's style. The instrumental performances of the band are Thrashingly superb. And even though the vocals of Lenny fall rather flat at times, his oddly Corey Taylor-sounding, haunting emotive release on the aforementioned ballad "Exit" justifies his place in the vocal booth.

Overall - DUST BOLT may have already become the Thrash greats of their time. By combining the raw, traditional genre values of bands like EXODUS with the experimental inclinations of ANTHRAX they deliver pure, undiluted qualities that fans of the style would appreciate and cherish with their patch plastered hearts. Yes, it may be somewhat generic, and perhaps even a touch repetitive, but it is nonetheless real. And as we roam the sooty, post-apocalyptic lands as a convoy of fellow Metal survivors, we'd be lucky to stumble upon "Mass Confusion" on our way.

9 / 10

Almost Perfect








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"Mass Confusion" Track-listing:
  1. Sick X Brain
  2. Mass Confusion
  3. Allergy
  4. Turned To Grey
  5. Blind To Art
  6. Mind The Gap
  7. Exit
  8. Empty Faces
  9. Taking Your Last Breath
  10. Portraits Of Decay
  11. Masters Of War
Dust Bolt Lineup:

Lenny  - Vocals/Guitar
Flo - Guitar
Bene - Bass
Nico - Drums

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