Kicking things off with a Sam Kinison-esque scream from vocalist Chris Natalini, the Jersey devils rip into “INRI,” delivering aural force trauma from the get-go.
The heavy riffing of CJ Scioscia and Adam Tranquilli continue to wreak havoc on the senses with “Off With Their Heads,” “Bretheren,” and “By the Slice.” “Bretheren” is especially diabolical, from its bouncy main riff to shifting time signatures on a dime akin to Canadian thrash legends Voivod in the Killing Technology era. “By the Slice” not only keeps tradition to the band’s roots sonically, but also lyrically as they revolve around the cannibalism themes of the Herschell Gordon Lewis classic from which their name is lifted.
As the visceral revival continues, we are treated to the album’s second course. This boasts longer and sludgier tracks with a sincere amount of heaviness from all fronts. “The Underling” is a six-and-a-half-minute opus about toxic relationships and what they can do to a person. This is one of Blood Feast’s more human tracks and makes for one of the more impressive numbers in their catalog as the emotion seamlessly transfers from recording to reality.
“Last Rites” and “Who Prays for the Devil” are mosh-fiendly tunes that zig and zag with creative riffs, zany vocal patterns, and wildly over the top rhythm and percussion work by Tom Lorenzo and Joe Moore. While the latter comes off as a standard pit-starter until the coda, “Last Rites” is a flurry of death/thrash excellence that brings you back to the gory glory days of metal. That said, “Who Prays”makes haste as it doesn’t feel like a six-minute song for a second.
For the main course before the chopping block, Blood Feast deliver healthy portions of old-school thrash with “Nein” and “The Burn” with some bleeding room in the form of “Remnants II.” “Nein” is a drum driven frenzy with Natalini’s striking shrieks powering the ruthless rhythms of Tranquilli and company.
“Remnants II” serves as a warning to the album’s final one-two punch, “The Burn,” which sees Natalini channel his inner Kinison one last time for five minutes of absolute chaos.
With its 10 tracks of destruction, Future State of Wicked is proof that after more than 30 years, Blood Feast continue to kill for pleasure with their brash and intense style of thrash born and bred for the underground. Putting passion first, the New Jersey quintet have crafted a solid album that hearkens back to the good old days of thrash while maintaining their place in the genre’s history.