Many refer to German thrashers Kreator as the pioneers of death metal and black metal subgenres due to the vast elements and styles their music initially generated. However, the group managed to explore and experiment during the grunge-era days with styles containing more industrial and gothic metal between the nineties and early 2000s. Ultimately, they returned to their thrash roots and continue today with their new album, ‘Gods of Violence’ out earlier this year via Nuclear Blast.
On Friday June 9th, we get to relive Kreator’s earlier days with the reissues of their first four length classics. Thanks to BMG, the following remastered albums are now available to us 1985’s ‘Endless Pain,’ 1986’s ‘Pleasure to Kill,’ 1987’s ‘Terrible Uncertainty’ and 1989’s ‘Extreme Aggression’ via digital, vinyl, and CD.
‘Endless Pain’ was released in 1985 via Noise Records. The ferocious debut is considered a cult classic, instantly attracting the underground metal scene. It is the pivotal influence on black metal music encompassing a perfect blend between black and thrash metal extremities. The reissue includes demo tracks that was once recorded under their former name, Tormentor. The artwork was redesigned consisting of rare photos, memorabilia, and old written notes during this era.
‘Pleasure To Kill’
For those who haven’t yet, you should pick up a copy of Kreator’s ‘Pleasure To Kill.’ It is hands down a classic with songs “Ripping Course,” “Riot of Violence,” and “Command of the Blade.” The melodic diversity is what makes it standout the most consisting of merciless executions. Songs from the group’s 1986 EP Flag of Hate is also featured in this reissue. This is the record that sparked the death metal genre, leaving it as one powerful release in metal history.
In 1987, Kreator unleashed their third studio album ‘Terrible Certainty.’ In this reissue, it features a few live tracks from 1988’s Dynamo Club in Eindhoven, Netherlands and their 1988 EP Out of the Dark…Into the Light. It introduces the band as a quartet, adding fourth member guitarist Jörge Trebziatowski to the mix. Songs such as “Storming With Menace,” “As the World Burns,” and “No Escape” will remind any fan, new or old, on their truculent speedy riffs and hooks.
After three albums under their belt, it was 1989’s ‘Extreme Aggression’ that brought them to an extended fanbase in America. It was the music video for the song“Betrayer” that featured in MTV’s Headbangers Ball, leading them to a substantial acclamation. It is one of their final albums before exploring other musical genres and, considered as a huge release. Not only does this reissue make one relive this moment, it also includes additional live tracks from their show in Berlin in 1990.
Although each remastered version does not include as much rare material, they are still worth purchasing. The listener will have the chance to experience or relive the early Kreator days, reminding all on their fearless musical delivery.
Zenae D. Zukowski
Endless Pain – 8/10
Pleasure To Kill – 9/10
Terrible Certainty – 9/10
Extreme Aggression – 9/10