The French’s reputation for liking their meat rare extends to their music if Dead Cowboy’s Slut’s slasher horror theme is anything to go by. Sporting an image of a young lad who’s been mauled by a rabid face-muncher, their album cover is of retina-repelling proportions, and the intro track of a torture scene is no more savoury.
It really does sound like blood on the tracks. Wanton bloodletting aside, The Hand of Death is an adept crack at death thrash that maintains heady momentum across its value-for-money 14 tracks of blastbeats, crunchy, malevolent riffs and caustic vocals.
Mindful of not sounding like a conveyor belt of bile, metal and innards (which sounds OK with us), the band muster enough diversity in their playing to keep things fresh, dipping into hardcore, stoner and old-school thrash, but generally sticking to their stock ingredients of The Haunted, Entombed and Slayer-inspired riffs, making this an album nicely familiar without it becoming a complete and utter rip-off.
As with a plethora of thrash bands, the real pleasure comes in imagining how good this lot might be when they play live. With this amount of menace, the assumption is very.