Release Date: 21/01/22
Spec: 2LP Black Gatefold Vinyl - Limited edition
Genre: Rock / Metal
As the 21st century was born, so Kreator underwent what was nothing less than a seismic creative rebirth. By this time, the iconic German band had released nine studio albums in the 1980s and '90s, which had established them as one of the most important metal names of these decades.In the first period, they had helped to shape and pioneer the thrash scene through such releases as 'Pleasure To Kill' (1986), 'Terrible Certainty' ('87) and 'Extreme Aggression' ('89). During the following decade, the band had opened up exciting horizons of experimentation on albums like 'Coma Of Souls' (1990), 'Renewal' ('92) and 'Endorama' ('99).
Now, though, it was time to move into a fresh era, as vocalist/guitarist Mille Petrozza explains.
“During the 1990s, we were definitely experimenting with what the band were doing. But (drummer) Ventor and I decided that for this album – our first of the new millennium – we wanted to go back to the sort of sound that we had at the start of Kreator. In other words, to get back to the reason why we began the band in the first place.”
There was also new guitarist introduced, as Sami Yli-Sirniö (who had made his reputation with Finnish band Waltari) took over from Tommy Vetterli. The latter (also known as Tommy T. Baron) had joined in 1996 and played on the 'Oucast' (1997) and 'Endorama' albums.
The producer for this album was Andy Sneap, who was now making a name for himself as one of the pre-eminent masters of this art in the modern metal world.“I had known and liked Andy since the days he had been the guitarist in Sabbat, as they were signed to Noise Records as Kreator were on that label. He was our first choice to work on this new project. I liked what he'd done for Testament on their album 'The Gathering' (released in 1999). He had given them a sound they'd never had before, and that really was what we were after. It was natural and organic, and also very modern. I remember phoning him at his Backstage Studios in England (Ripley in Derbyshire). And Warrel Dane, the vocalist in Nevermore, answered. Andy was producing their new album at the time ('Dead Heart In A Dead World', 2000). And when I heard this, again I was very impressed. So, I was delighted when he agreed to produce the new Kreator album.”
The album title came from something Petrozza had read. “In a book I came across a comment that John F. Kennedy said (in 1962). This was: "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable”. I thought 'Violent Revolution' would make a good title for an album. So, I kept it in my mind for this record. I think 'Violent Revolution' is a title that makes a real impact.”
One interesting aspect of the track listing was that the 52 second instrumental 'The Patriarch' actually came after the opening song 'Reconquering The Throne'. Fans might have been expected that it would have opened the album. But for Petrozza, there was a logical reason for this not to happen. “We really wanted to lead off with a thrashing track, to show everyone what we were now doing musically. After 'Endorama', it was important that everyone should recognise this was a new era for Kreator.”
'Violent Revolution' is without question an excellent album. While in some ways it does hark back to the glories of the band's earlier days, nonetheless it does not sound at all nostalgic. The performances and production values are very much part of the contemporary era, and the strength of the compositions themselves are of the highest values. Rising to the challenge offered by a new generation of ambitious metal bands, Kreator proved they were far from being a spent force. Unlike so many of their peers, here was a band who still had so much creativity to offer, and were also clearly excited themselves by what they were doing. And when you hear the band themselves enjoying the entire process, then you know this is a bona fide revitalisation.
Disc 1: Side A:1.Reconquering The Throne/2.The Patriarch/3.Violent Revolution/4.All Of The Same Blood Side B:1.Servant In Heaven – King In Hell/2.Second Awakening/3.Ghetto War
LP Track Listing Disc 2: Side C:1.Replicas Of Life/2.Slave Machinery
Side D:1.Bitter Sweet Revenge/2.Mind Of Fire/3.System Decay