Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Testament – Low


Low was a remarkable achievement during the early 90s. Back then, the big names in thrash were producing some genuinely embarrassing music. Stomp 442. Youthanasia. Yikes. Testament was the rare (lone?) exception who got better as time went on. They actually got heavier on Low.

Not only that, they got heavier without trying to sound like Pantera. Two key elements made Low a better record than, say, Practice What You Preach. One was the varied vocal delivery of Chuck Billy. This was Billy’s best performance and it helped to divorce Testament from the thrash masses. The other thing was upgrading drummers from Louie Clemente (and possibly even Paul Bosteph) to John Tempesta. Finally having a drummer who could competently double-kick really opened up the rest of the band. Also, let's not forget the spectacular lead playing by James Murphy. On Low, a confident band made timeless music without any specific subgenre classifications. It’s simply awesome.

Testament – Low


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