AT WAR – Infidel – CD Review
It was 1987 when I first met and saw these guys. I was with some former friends and I think we were at the keg party on Potter’s Rd seeing Ratchet. I saw them live shortly thereafter and was just blown away. Pure American thrash. They were good friends with another band from that area that I loved, O.T.T., so I got to see and hang out with these guys often. I believe I may have only seen them live twice, which was a pity since they were local homeboys.
It was pretty exciting for me when Paul sat in with my Motorhead tribute band and sang The Hammer. What an honor! It’s really only been in recent years that I really got to know those guys and again, it’s a pity that I don’t live near them these days. Paul and I have become great pals and I got to hang with him here in Austin quite a bit a few months ago when he came in for a visit. What a blast! He’s still a maniac. I love it.
But I guess I am here to talk about their latest album, Infidel. All of us have been asking those guys for years when they would get back together and do another album. We always heard the same thing, “It’s coming.” Sure, Paul. It had been coming for 20 years!
But then it happened. Boom. At War got on Myspace. Started posting news about recording an album with the world famous Alex Perialas. The buzz got going and I was excited that they were really doing it.
So when the record came out, I pulled the rock star card and emailed Paul with “Where’s my copy?” It was said facetiously as anyone who knows me knows I always buys CDs and even hate being on the guest list for a band. Those folks aren’t playing for free, ya know? But Paul sent me one anyway. It was nice to see my name in the special thanks, albeit undeservedly.
So I put the album on right when it came in. BOOM!
AT WAR! Infidel!
Fourteen seconds of noise and then it’s Paul Arnold in your face on the opener Assassins. Hot damn, this sounds like At War! I’ve listened to this about 15 times now and there’s not a stinker in the bunch. If you’ve ever liked At War, then you still will. This really picks up where they left off 22 years ago, except with better production.
It’s difficult for a band that gets back together to record 15+ plus years after the fact and to be able to retain the level of good metal that they once had. At War did it with this one. To be truthful I like this one even better than their previous albums. I really don’t think I am being biased at all. This album kills. It’s At Wars perfect blend of Venom, Motorhead and their own touch of thrash that really always set them a bit apart of other thrash bands of their time.
So…Nice work Paul, Shawn and Dave! Now bring the show to Austin, you fuckers!
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