Thrash metal has been making a comeback in recent times with artists like Municipal Waste and Fueled By Fire leading the metallic hordes back into 80s imagery and poser-killing pits. But during such a surge, there are bound to be groups that make the powerful subgenre seem obsolete or just boring, like England's Evile. Often hailed as an upcoming thrash warlock, Evile's hype was solely established by the band's Enter the Grave CD, which has surprisingly been turning heads since its release. As a thrash fan, I gave into pressure and picked it up, yet Evile's debut gives more than what the listener bargains for. Despite having its moments, Enter the Grave is unquestionably a minimalist approach to thrash in which vague qualities are highlighted without any strain of authentic attributes or musical diversity.
Though many items play a role in its demise, Enter the Grave mainly suffers impalements caused by poor instrumentation and Evile's unending musical continuation portions. Being a thrash band, there are certain expectations about the riffs and the brutal anticipation amongst the guitar playing, but this is not the case here. The riffs are essentially second-rate Exodus chimes lacking technicality and differed chord progression as everything sounds like one sub-par picking section on repeat until you find yourself struggling to stay awake. Stripped away is the ring of originality and its grand cacophony, and so we are left with this generic pile of mindless thrash that presents no sign of a real band anywhere. There really isn't much to say about the percussion or the bass as both play no role whatsoever in Enter the Grave, which obviously just leaves a show of stupid shredding with no positive qualities at all for the listener to indulge.
Enter the Grave is a failed effort on the musical spectrum, but the vocals are anything but destructive to Evile's slumping debut. Matt Drake's position at the front of this thrash quartet adds a decent addition to this fading effort and fits Evile's choice of metal appropriately. As a vocalist, Drake is the general thrash singer you'd expect with aggressive overtones and the whole 80s attitude, and that's exactly what Evile needs at the microphone. Any form of negativity is rather infrequent with few issues on the vocal patterns and his semi-annoying tone, but those problems are few and far between. Drake does a good overall job softening the blow, as this record would be almost unbearable if he wasn't its main feature.
Evile might sound like a good thrash band on paper, but their dull debut is cast into the dirt below due to several obvious and redundant errors. As a whole, Britain's pseudo-starlets are vastly flawed in almost every musical category ranging from the riffs to the song structure, and the areas that beg for improvement are painfully clear; it's just not a fun experience. Enter the Grave is far too generic to qualify as a decent release, and I'm quite certain my name is Charles McGrinf*** if Evile's full-length debut marks any revival in the thrash metal genre.