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Classic thrash from locals Crown the Lost

Reverence Dies Within
Self-released

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Crown the Lost's breed of purist metal is classic, late '80s melodic thrash in the unholy wake of Metallica and Slayer. Other than guitarist Joe Bonaddio's occasional interjections, there are no tough-guy hardcore growls and barks. No black-metal sorcery, no dark ambient atmospheres, no gothic/industrial machinations, and most importantly, not even the faintest scintilla of hip-hop hybridization.

Instead, the members of Gibsonia-based Crown the Lost (most of whom were previously in Sinning Is Our Savior) unleash the mighty torrent of blistering guitar leads, machine-gun riffage and precise rhythmic pummeling that is the hallmark of their chosen craft. Topping it off are the quasi-operatic vocals of Chris Renaldi, who brings the band's compositions -- with lyrics mostly involving a thoughtful, if often dramatic, condemnation of oppressive religion -- to shuddering, soaring life. It's also another studio notch for regional producer Eric Klinger (of Pro-Pain), though at times he tends to make the powerful drumming seem a bit tinny.

As to who will be interested in this CD, my best guess would be Europe, especially in the Nordic countries where Vikings still sail the seas with their Nokias and Ericssons, and where this art form never truly perished. In the States, though, it could be a tough sell to the MySpace legions of baggy pants and eyeshadow.

I wish them luck, because even though thrash metal might not be my preferred pursuit, a band that sticks to its guns, and acquits itself masterfully while doing it, deserves due admiration in my book.

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