Scythe: Subterranean Steel

It’s heavy metal and it’s exactly as you know it

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For 14 bullet-belted years, Chicago’s Usurper packed a massive Celtic Frost-shaped punch. For those who missed their crunchy metal, frontman Rick Scythe has returned with a band called, er, Scythe. No surprises for guessing that their second outing sounds exactly like you’d expect from a man who has spent the last three decades immersed in the world of Celtic Frost, Sodom and Possessed.

The trousers are leather, muscled wrists bear spikes, the belts are studded and every single second of Subterranean Steel screams metal with every fibre of its being. From the opening salvo of Leather Aggressor through to Thunder Hammer, this is a fist-in-the-face affair – no ballads, no going soft.

The music is very much rooted in 1985, although the production has a far more modern sheen; the guitars are sharp and precise, drums sound like body blows. Is it death metal? Thrash? Black metal? Who cares? It’s heavy bloody metal, whatever you decide. Fans of Nunslaughter and Desaster will feel very much at home here.