Alcatraz Line up: 2019
Demolition Hammer originally formed as a three-piece in the mid-80s in a line-up consisting of Steve Reynolds (vocals/bass), James Reilly (guitar) and John Salerno (drums). The latter’s tenure would be short-lived and a few years later Derek Sykes was brought in as a second guitarist. Earning a record contract on the strength of their second EP ‘Necrology’ (1989), they went on to record one of the hardest-hitting thrash debuts ever with’Tortured Existence’ (1990): in spite of its unrelenting brutality, the album is eminently accessible, two traits that are extremely difficult to combine. Follow-up ‘Epidemic of Violence’ (1992) took the aggression up another notch with an onslaught that borders on death metal. Not surprising, really, since Demolition Hammer describe their music as ‘deaththrash’. The listener is subjected to an unrelenting barrage of furious riffs and bludgeoning drums. Reynolds’ fiendish snarls are an attraction in and of themselves as he spits out a tapestry of indescribable horrors. Hard to believe they disbanded after 1994’s ‘Time Bomb’... but twenty-odd years later, the classic line-up reconvened with the addition of new drummer Angel Cotte. Many of you will not have had the opportunity to see this steamroller at work so it’s all hands on deck for all you self-respecting thrash fiends out there.