Holding the flag high for German thrash we have VULTURE, who have emerged as solid journeymen in their chosen field. The ’80s thrash revival hasn’t quite hit the same level of success as the recent comeback of old school death metal…can VULTURE turn the tide?

I don’t know if Sentinels will be the record to do it. It’s a fun record combining straight EXODUS worship with heaping helpings of yelping Kraut-thrash, but it’s no threat to join the company of thrash immortals. The yippy vocals (like Zetro Sousa trying to do early Schmier from DESTRUCTION) are overdone and sometimes cringeable. The songwriting is highly variable…early tracks like ‘Screams From The Abbatoir’ and ‘Unhallowed And Forgotten’ have a kind of unfocused, loose feel, but when VULTURE tighten things up, they can kick a lot of ass, as with ‘Realm Of The Impaler’, ‘Gargoyles’ and ‘Oathbreaker’. It’s no coincidence that those tracks have healthy doses of “classic” metal as well as thrash.

There’s a bit of melodic experimentation, such as the great twin lead opening to the instrumental ‘Der Tod Tragt Schwarzes Leder’ which is almost SCORPIONS-like. The title track has a strong mid-paced chug but an embarrassing spoken monologue late in the song undercuts it. On the whole, VULTURE have their heart in the right place and can probably thrash up a storm live, but they just haven’t put all the pieces together. At least, not on Sentinels.
Review By: Dr. Abner Mality

Metal Blade