The Wolfpack/Wolfbrigade guys are easily one of my favorite bands out there of any genre of music, simply because of their consistency, as I have never been disappointed by any of their releases. Sure, they haven't been able to recreate another "Lycanthro Punk" or "New Dawn Fades," but that's asking too much considering how amazing those two records are, and their later output is still tremendous compared to a lot of crust bands today. The band's new album, "Damned," is a very nice compliment to the rest of the band's discography, as it doesn't stray away from the sound that the band pioneered, nor does it fail to deliver some intense and memorable music.
If you've heard any of Wolfbrigade's previous material, then you shouldn't be surprised at all with the songs on "Damned." The magnificent blending of sheer crust-punk aggression and mesmerizing Swedeath melody is still intact, and just as ruthless as ever. "Slaves of induction" and "Hurricane Veins" are two of the finest offerings on this record as they capture the essence of Wolfbrigade's melody-tinged, crusty madness perfectly. The song "Feed the Flames" is a throwback to the days of "Lycanthro Punk" where melody is a non-factor and intensity reigns supreme. The band may have also found themselves a new classic song with "Ride the Steel," a track that starts with a distorted clean guitar before gradually escalating to a flurry of crusty destruction.
Micke's vocals are still as harsh and angry as ever, sounding just like they did when the Wolfbrigade lineup was spawned. The bass gets plenty of moments to shine on its own (The intro to "Damned to Madness" in particular) and the bassist's ability to keep up with the blitzkrieg-like riffs is great as well. The drumming is what you would expect, d-beat fills and fast pacced assaults throughout, nothing too out of the ordinary. All in all, if you're a fan of the band and their previous material, then "Damned" will be welcomed to your music collection with open arms. Wolfbrigade prove with this album that you don't need to radically change your sound to remain relevant, and I believe now is as good a time as any to proclaim them the Bolt Thrower of crust, simply because I doubt they'll ever disappoint with their music.
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"Ride the Steel"
"Peace of Mind"
4.3/5 or 86%.