Artist: Iron Reagan
Album: Crossover Ministry
Record Label: Relapse
Tony Foresta's secondary thrash crew prove themselves to be much more than jokers
Though the idea of "fun" being a crucial component in thrash metal is likely to stay hidden from the uninitiated forever, whether via his day job in Municipal Waste or in Iron Reagan, vocalist Tony Foresta is swallowing all the old-school, hell-bent-for-denim joy he can.
Crossover Ministry, Iron Reagan's third full-length is as much a fusion of party-centric thrash, hardcore/ skater nihilism and dalliances in power-violence as we've come to expect. It might even be a joke amongst the band members as to just how much they wear their influences on their sleeves. For the most part however, it's a record that proves how much fun this music can be.
Opener 'A Dying World' is dark, Slayer-esque classicism that sounds as authentic now as it might have done in the Reagan era. Similarly, 'Dead With My Friends' (perhaps accidentally) becomes a rollicking steam-roller that feels like a perfect mantra for these times. 'Condition Evolution' is another highlight complete with guttural growls, gang vocals and blistering riffing. The macabre assault of 'Blatant Violence' is a blood-pumping moment late on, while the rip-roaring Hardcore of 'DogsnotGod' rings with Henry Rollins-like sarcasm.
The lack in sonic depth or variation does mean that cuts like 'More War' and 'Megachurch' (despite the latter's deliberately comical vocals) suffer via no distinction. However, Crossover Ministry's rough-around-the-edges dark and endlessly bpm-heightening rattle proves that Iron Reagan are a band to both party to and take seriously.
Key Tracks: 'Condition Evolution', 'Dead With My Friends', 'DogsnotGod'
For Fans Of: Suicidal Tendencies, Slayer