When Warbringer's last record, IV: Empires Collapse, dropped in 2013 it immediately caught my attention, powerful songs like Tower Of The Serpent and Hunter Seeker left my seventeen year old self in total awe. This was a band who could pay tribute to the old school but infuse it with something new and far more powerful. There is something wonderfully evil about Warbringer and their beautifully dorky love for military history shines at its finest on Woe To The Vanquished, a record that pretty comfortably claim to be the best thrash record of the past few years.
I think what Warbringer fundamentally get about thrash metal that many of their peers totally miss is the inherently poppy nature of the genre. I don't mean that they have stupid clean choruses, but rather that Warbringer emphasize killer hooks, catchy rhythms and flashy ass solos that you can't help but love. The songwriting takes precedence here and Woe To The Vanquished burns brightly with the sort of rock and roll energy that most bands dream of having. The pure swagger and thematic unity of this record makes it an engrossing spin from top to bottom, the kind of thing you can't turn down but instead only fall ever deeper in love with.
There is a certain unbridled passion and, dare I say, sense of fun to Woe To The Vanquished that permeates even the darkest moments. It makes this album one that you can't help but to spin time and time again with a big smile on your face. The band have moved past their trials and tribulations and into a bold new world where they have put together their strongest achievement thus far. No matter who you think they might be borrowing from, you can't deny Warbringer have firmly established their own sound and it fucking rules.
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