Germany’s Kreator were always the connoisseur’s thrash band of choice: vicious and gimlet-eyed, they swerved the acne-cream-’n’-vodka-fuelled buffoonery of some of their American counterparts. Forty years into their career, that unrelenting approach has dimmed only slightly.
Recorded at Berlin’s fabled Hansa Tonstudio, the 11 tracks that make up Hate Über Alles are sharper than a cut-throat razor. The title track and Killer Of Jesus are relentless barrages of double kick drums and frontman Mille Petrozza’s demon-dog bark, punctuated by rabble-rousing backing vocals and the occasional glimpse of melody.
Even when they slow it down, as on the crawling Crush The Tyrants, it still sounds like a knife fight waiting to happen.
It’s not all non-stop belligerence, though. Dying Planet’s on-the-nose title suggests there’s a conscience lying beneath the extreme aggression, even if it’s wreathed in pessimism. But mostly this album is Kreator doing what they’ve done for decades, which is serving up viciousness like no one else.