Album Reviews

Sacred Reich – Awakening Review

Released by Metal Blade Records

Release date: August 23rd, 2019

Genre: Thrash Metal


Line Up:

Wiley Arnett – Guitars

Joey Radziwill – Guitars

Dave McClain – Drums

Phil Rind – Vocals, Bass



1. Awakening

2. Divide And Conquer

3. Salvation

4. Manifest Reality

5. Killing Machine

6. Death Valley

7. Revolution

8. Something To Believe



Sacred Reich is an American band, formed back in 1985 in Phoenix Arizona, considered as one of the most important representatives of the thrash metal of second generation, like Testament, Death Angel and more. They have disbanded in 2000 after dropping four full length albums, but they would go on to reform strictly as a live act in 2006. This year Metal Blade Records present Sacred Reich’s new material after twenty three years of studio inactivity.

The comeback of Dave McClain on the drum kit after his successful era with Machine Head and the addition of Joey Radziwill playing guitar alongside Wiley Arnett are the most important accomplishments of the band. The thrashing quartet has prepared eight new tracks with a combination of thrash and groove melodies. The title track gives the ideal pace for opening a new record with its aggressive riffs and “Divide And Conquer” is a perfect match. This pair of tunes give a direct “punchy” start off and they consist in the thrashier part of the album. As the listening goes on, there are some different music elements to discover, such as the groovier sound that comes out from tunes like “Salvation” and “Manifest Reality”. The fifth track “Killing Machine” starts with a mid tempo intro that falls into a raw thrash attack, but there is still the melodic song “Death Valley” that gives a different vibe to the album. In fact, the lyrics of the song speak about death but in a positive atmosphere created by this groovy, maybe more hard rock riffs and melodies and this gives a major diversity to the record. The final section contains a pure thrash and short track “Revolution”, which could be considered a political song, a message that people should take their own actions in order to make things change. The ending song, the groovy and melodic “Something To Believe” makes the final conclusion about what the whole record is about: focus on the positive things, try to live life as much as possible and keep good relationships and love between people. Phil Rind shows that he still has the vibe of a high level thrash metal frontman .

In the end, “Awakening”gives the impression that Sacred Reich has still something to say in heavy metal music, but it’s not the full headbanging record that the listener could expect from start to finish. Using a variety of styles and melodies in order to improve or innovate is important, because in this way there would be more colorful songs in an album. Still, this record sounds not convincing enough, maybe it would have been better adding two or three more tracks or making longer songs would have been another option. It’s the first effort of a classic era band to return to the modern metal world and it’s a very appreciated attempt that shows there is still the basis in order to give much more in the future.


Ratings: 7/10

Written by: Katerina Paisoglou

My Global Mind – Staff Writer


Tell Us How You Feel