Nima : The Brazilian Victor Vasconcellos a.k.a Whipstriker is a respected man in the extreme metal underground. The man is/was involved in bands such as among others Atomic Roar, Farscape, Diabolic Force, Power From Hell and Toxic Holocaust, and for a decade he has also been quite active with his own Whipstriker, with which he has released three solid full-lengths (and countless side-releases).
The fourth Whipstriker LP, ‘Merciless Artillery’, simply continues where its magnificent predecessor, ’Only Filth Will Prevail’ left off. The title could not have been chose better, because what we have here is indeed a merciless artillery of thrash, black, traditional heavy metal and sturdy punk n’ roll. What strikes me the most is the fact that the atmospheric, melodic, traditional guitars have gained more space here. Because of that the comparison with colleagues Deströyer 666 is a bit more obvious. But that hasn’t had that much influence on the general sound, because this is simply Whipstriker and the spirit of legends such as Venom, Bathory, Possessed and co. is ever still dominating.
Another striking point about the new material is that especially on songwriting matters the band again shows huge progress. All eight tracks on the album are one by one rock-solid compositions and merciless whip strike, and it is impossible to name a (few) highlight(s). The production team Leon Necromaniac (Apokalyptic Raids) en Joel Grind (Toxic Holocaust) have ensured a powerful, fat sound that at the same time keeps the music’s old-school charm intact. And finally the cool cover artwork (as well as the updated logo) from none other than Sadistik Exekution’s Rok complete the picture. All in all ‘Merciless Artillery’ is an excellent, but also “typical” (which I of course mean positively) record of its kind, and therefore a must for the fans of the genre and of aforementioned bands, and for the fans of bands such as Bulldozing Bastard, Baphomet’s Blood, Bunker 66, Children Of Technology, Bat, Nocturnal, Witchburner and co.