Viking's Choice

Skeletonwitch: Forever Tormented

Skeletonwitch. i i

Skeletonwitch.

Alex Solca hide caption

itoggle caption Alex Solca
Skeletonwitch.

Skeletonwitch.

Alex Solca

I've always unfairly associated Skeletonwitch with the popular retro-thrash metal movement that's been in effect for the last four or five years. That scene has had its bright moments — nobody can touch Municipal Waste's songwriting and dedication — but more often than not, it's a stale regurgitation of the '80s glory days. But I was wrong about Skeletonwitch: The Athens, Ohio, band's fourth album, Forever Abomination, is one of the best thrash albums in recent memory.

Listen: Skeletonwitch, 'Of Ash And Torment'

Cover for Forever Abomination

Of Ash and Torment

  • Artist: Skeletonwitch
  • Album: Forever Abomination

Forever Abomination comes out Oct. 11 on Prosthetic Records.

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Song
Of Ash and Torment
Album
Forever Abomination
Artist
Skeletonwitch
Label
Prosthetic
Released
2011

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"Of Ash and Torment" is one of the nastier tracks on Forever Abomination, if mainly for its switchback momentum. And, while blackened thrash in spirit, the song's power-hungry rhythm section feels more like Iron Maiden. It's like I need to go steal a car and challenge Ryan Gosling's character from Drive to a street race — he with his morose electro-pop soundtrack (of which I'm a fan, don't get me wrong) and me with Skeletonwitch, pounding my right foot even harder into the pedal even as I round comically dangerous corners. It's that sudden gear shift from breakneck riffage and guitar-hero antics into the melodic bridge that feels so much like a blur of red stoplights searing by. Before you see the Buick crossing the intersection, you're already slamming on the brakes.

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