Fast forward to 2013 — although Slayer and Anthrax are making some of the most heavy and dynamic music of their careers, Metallica has gone “Off the Wall” with their new Vans sneaker line and Dave Mustaine seems to be auditioning for the role of Ted Nugent’s understudy by constantly spewing his political rhetoric and chewing out Men’s Warehouse employees (“Peace sells, but who’s buying your competitively priced suits?”).
So where does that leave Thrash?
It leaves the genre in the hands of the somewhat overlooked and underappreciated band, Testament, whose 2012 release, Dark Roots of Earth, not only debuted at No.
12 on the Billboard Top 200 (the highest chart position in the band’s history) but also showed fans and critics alike that they are still a force to reckon with going into its third decade as a group.
Dark Roots of Earth showcases a sound that is deeply entrenched in the Thrash genre Testament helped build, but still takes enough creative risks to push the band’s music to new heights and catapult Testament back into the modern Metal landscape.Even though Testament may have not been considered a part of “The Big Four” at the height of Thrash, with guitarists Alex Skolnick and Eric Peterson becoming, once again, the formidable tag-team they were in the ’80s, and with Chuck Billy’s signature roar and Gene Hoglan’s innovatively impressive drumming, they are indisputably one of the elite Thrash bands of yesterday and today.
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