Artillery – “Terror Squad” (1987)

There are good songs, there are great songs, but every once in a while a song comes along that transcends mere greatness, and leaves scar tissue on the brain.  A song that forever stamps itself as one of life’s little pleasures that you will never forget.  For me, there are probably maybe a hundred or so of these songs etched into my cerebrum.  That may sound like a lot, but compared to the number of songs I’ve listened to in my life, it’s just a drop in the bucket.  What’s my point?  My point is that the song Terror Squad from the 1987 Artillery album of the same name is one of those transcendent, perfect songs from my life.  The bone crushing groove, the thick and down-tuned riffage, the nastiness of the verse, and the defiant refrain just come together perfectly to form one ferocious and beautifully ugly thrashterpiece!  Terror Squad is the kind of song that gets me so fired up that I might go to the gym and attempt to bench press 450 pounds, even though I have never benched anything more than 315 pounds in my life.  You know, a song that makes me act like an idiot.

Terror Squad was Artillery’s second LP.  Besides housing the incredible title track, this record pours on the heat with plenty of churning, grinding and chopped up riffs n’ rhythms.  Singer Flemming Ronsdorf screams and hollers above the thrash madness like a rabid animal.  Though he is intense, Ronsdorf never goes off the rails to the point of comedy like others in this genre (I’m talking to you, guy from Kreator).  A couple of other choice cuts include The Challenge and In The Trash.  Lyrically, Terror Squad focuses on the oppression of the lower class and the cruelty of mankind.  At times, Terror Squad can feel quite suffocating in its heaviness, and the second half of the album lacks the amount of song-to-song variety I would prefer.  But for OTT thrash, I much prefer these Danes over the more recognized European thrash bands of the day (namely Kreator, Sodom, and Destruction).

One last thing, here’s a cool lyric from the song Decapitations Of Deviants — “When shit turns to gold, the poor will be born without ass!”  Eat your heart out Bill Shakespeare!  My score: B


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