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Dust Bolt – Mass Confusion album review

German thrash addicts Dust Bolt find their shrine on the US East Coast with new album 'Mass Confusion'

Dust Bolt album cover

These time-travelling Bavarian metallers have delivered yet another fierce homage to the mid-80s thrash uprising, once again conjuring that sound so reverentially you can practically smell the beer-sodden denim and hear the pitchy squeak of Converse high-tops on the floor.

Though Dust Bolt reference the Bay Area movement as their magnetic North, their sound hews far closer to that era’s East Coast thrash scene, awash in grimy riffage, pounding tempos that change direction with violent force and the everybody-gather-’round-the-mic gang vocals that invested Anthrax with instant familiarity.

Dust Bolt have zero aspirations beyond playing old-school, skull-crushing thrash with wild, untamed abandon. Standout tracks include Blind To Art and Mind The Gap, a dizzying swarm of chugging, double-kick-powered grooves that reach velocities so intense that vocalist Lenny can barely keep pace. If they’ve taken any lessons from prior efforts, it’s trimming away the repetitive excess that badly hindered 2014’s Awake The Riot – and though lacking any arena-sized anthems, Mass Confusion will fit nicely next to your worn-out cassette of Among The Living.

Camped out in Southern California, Joe pens features, reviews albums and covers live shows for Metal Hammer and Classic Rock. When he’s not bothering his neighbours with Rammstein, Joe’s typically off playing ice hockey, fumbling around on a bass or letting his dogs guilt him into a nice long walk.