Bonn, Germany-based thrash metal outfit Fabulous Desaster follow in the steps of their fellow countrymen Destruction, Kreator and Sodom on the full-length debut Hang ‘Em High. Founded in 2010, the quartet went on releasing four demos before launching Hang ‘Em High in November last year.
For this review we were supplied with a vinyl edition of the album which comes with a special vinyl-optimised master by Soundsight Studio’s Armin Rave. Not to judge the book by its cover, but looking at the album art a listener may actually sense what to expect from the 10-track record. The sleeve was designed by Mario E. Lopez, and it perfectly depicts what kind of an apocalypse you are about to experience by listening to the record. But hang in there, more about the music in just a bit.
The back cover includes track listing information, along with photos of the band members, and other credits.
Inside the sleeve you’ll find a record (oh really?) housed in a white-paper sleeve, and an inlay card with lyrics. Pretty straight-forward.
Musically, Hang ‘Em High is an album that’s pure pissed-off fury that’s best as listening material while you punch holes in walls or resort to good ol’ fashioned headbanging, preferably against a very hard object. This would be a perfect description for the album if you want it in an abstract way. I have to say that I listened all of the demo releases up to Hang ‘Em High, and the major improvements in sound (particularly in musicianship and production) were made along with a more solid and well-defined direction. Hang ‘Em High creates an entirely new storm altogether.
Hang ‘Em High is not for the faint of heart. This becomes painfully clear after listening to just the first ten seconds of the record. “Death is Loud” immediately accelerates to faster-than-light speed just moments after its opening drum fill, kicking your arse all over the place and leaving you to wonder just what happened. The track is so insanely fast and the tempo changes throughout the song are so abrupt that mark my words: If you’re new to the realm of Thrash Metal, you WILL be left behind.
Other incredible songs follow afterwards, from another heavy hitter “Faster Than Light,” galloping “Warsaw” and “Midnight Fistfight,” “Thrash Metal Symphony” with its mid-paced beginning before changing into a blisteringly quick thrash track.
Hang ‘Em High delivers great songs that are pulverizing and memorable. Fabulous Desaster offers up a first rate set of powerful riffs with metal groove and aggressive vocals. High points of the album include the opening “Death is Loud,” “Midnight Fistfight” “Wellness in Hell,” “Thrash Metal Symphony,” and “Toxic Nuclear War.”
The album is available as digital download, CD and black vinyl from Bandcamp.