Wargasm - Why Play Around? (Profile) 1988
Wargasm are now about an obscure a metal band as they come. However, in the 80's they were gaining huge popularity as part of the short-live Boston heavy metal/thrash scene. Wargasm are a mixture of styles, though they are labeled thrash by most. However, their sound is a mixture of the NWOBHM movement, some speed metal and a healthy does of Motorhead. (I have read that Tank was a huge influence on the band as well.) Rich and Barry Spillberg were the brother team behind the band. Rich writes some excellent riffs and spews out some fast and furious leads, while brother Barry proves to be a versatile drumming, doing everything from super fast double bass, to more groove oriented romps. Standouts are "Revenge", a mid paced crunchy number with some catchy riffs and hooks, "Bullet & Blades" and thrashers "Undead" and "Humanoid", both held up by by some punishing double kick. The vocals have that slight hardcore yell meets punk aggression sound, not unlike S.O.D. Overall, a solid slab of molten metal. It's a same this one didn't get a bit more exposure. In 1988, this should have been a monster! I had read that the band had label problems and got tied up in years of legal battles that kept them tied up for years. By the time they'd gotten out of it finally, thrash was not the craze and the band had seriously been dealt a blow. They did release a few more albums before breaking up in the mid-90's.
Wargasm - Fireball (Massacre) 1995
A fun little EP from Wargasm. I immediately loved the album cover which is a parody of Deep Purple's original "Fireball" album cover, and why not since this album opens with a cover of that very song. The next track is labeled as a video edit, although I must confess I don't exactly know what that means. I think it is just a shorter version of the original song from the "Ugly" album. Regardless, this song starts off with a short intro that reminds me of some of the modern alterna-grunge rockers, before kicking into a mid-paced, chunky heavy metal riff. I wouldn't exactly call this thrash, but it is solid heavy metal. For some reason I was reminded slightly of Voivod when listening to this track. The remaining tracks were recorded live over the radio, so there is no crowd noise. All four tracks suffer a bit from a sloppy mix with the vocals being a bit buried. However, this is a minor complaint because I don't find the production overly distracting either. All four tracks remind me of something you might hear from Meliah Rage, early Metal Church and even a bit of old Metallica. Label it thrash, label it speed metal, label it whatever you want, it doesn't really matter because this is just good quality heavy metal. Crank up "Revenge" and see if it doesn't get your head to banging. "He wound up, knee deep, knee deep in blood."