Armortura – ‘Armortura’ (Mighty Music) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Phil Cooper   
Monday, 08 January 2018 04:20

Armortura artworkHailing from the north-east of England and with a nod towards old school thrash, Armortura are set to release their self-titled debut album.  With the writing of the ten tracks being a year long process during which time the line up was cemented as a five-piece, the band have been crafting their sound in order to deliver a hard-hitting record that Mighty Music have requested following a four-track taster in 2017. With a bonus track featuring Annihilator’s Jeff Waters, what does ‘Armortura’ have in store?


Opening up with ‘Zodiac’ and the pounding drums coupled with intense, chopped guitar riffs heralds the arrival of a powerful thrash sound.  Phil De Sade’s vocals cut through the mix, laden with venom and fury, with his style of guttural anger yet clear vocals fitting the thrash vibe. Twin guitars from Paul Trotter and Adam Ironside allow for the riffs to drive the track forward as well as making sure the guitar solos take centre place in the mix.  ‘Insidious’ continues at an unrelenting pace with blast beats and double kick bass drums taking charge courtesy of Neil Vickers. The bass of Steve Smart locks in with the drums to further highlight the powerhouse of the rhythm section.  ‘Insidious’ proves to be a definite highlight on the album, with the vocals given just the right amount of effects treatment to make them standout and the band clearly working as a tight unit to bring together the best thrash elements.


‘Shadow Underworld’ opens up with a staccato full band sound that leads into a heavy hitting guitar riff. A big wash of reverb across the whole sound adds to the colossal sound by thickening the texture.  With a guitar break the metronome increases in pace and a breakneck drum beat takes hold with the other instrumentation following suit. Twin guitar melodies form excellent break points and the vocals get a further lift in the choruses.  Much like ‘Insidious’ ‘Shadow Underworld’ is a stand out moment on the album and further highlights the song-writing and musicianship on offer.


Further tracks within the album, ‘Flight 19’, ‘Wanted Dead or Alive’ and ‘The Keep’ keep the rapid-fire thrash style going. A unified and consistent sound that successfully avoids becoming stale by not letting the themes or structures of tracks to bleed into one another. The longest track ‘Requiem for The Damned’ boasts the most sonic diversity on the album. Beginning with an acoustic guitar melody that is picked up by the twin guitars and turned into a harmony intro. The full instrumentation and vocals kick in and from this point the track continues to grow while retaining themes from the initial harmonised guitar part as catchy refrains and points of reference throughout.  Through its growth and variation, ‘Requiem…’ draws to a climactic finale before a fade out that has the listener reaching for the repeat button. 



The bonus remix of ‘11th Hour’ featuring Jeff Waters closes album and whereas the original version of the track is a good thrash number, there is an extra edge with the remix.  There’s more low-end that not only thickens the texture but lends a more menacing feel to the track as a whole.  The snare now has more of an attacking presence as it cuts through the bass rumble and when the machine-gun rapid guitar riffs come in there is a feeling of more power on display from Armortura. All of this coupled with the presence of Mr. Waters lends a lot of weight to the bands thrash credentials.


This is overall a highly enjoyable album, there is clearly a lot of talent from musicianship to song-writing and the way in which the music has been mixed highlights all of the good points to be found.  It’s an unrelenting album that hooks the listener in from the first riff, being a full sonic assault without a dull moment.  Hopefully there will be much more to come from these guys over the coming year once this debut is released.


‘Armortura’ is released on 26 January. You can get your copy HERE.


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