Leon : It doesn’t happen very often that I get a thrash metal album to review and this usually isn’t a strong album either, unfortunately there are a lot of mediocre bands in this genre. Fortunately, this time I did receive a really cool thrash metal record to listen to! Perhaps this is because of the prog influences, the band profile themselves as a ‘progressive thrash metal’ band. The Norwegian group Vorbid has been around since 2013 and released their self-titled EP three years later. This year they’re ready for a full length album that will be released under the name ‘Mind’.
‘Mind’ is a conceptual record that revolves around all the factors that steers the human mind and way of behavior and thinking. In a fictional world based on our own history, they conceptualize people’s tendencies to abuse, segregate, stray away from the community, escape from the reality and base their actions on human made divinity. To be honest with you, I didn’t realize it was an album with a story until I’d already listened to the record for a few times and read the information sheet that was provided with the album. Also, I can’t understand the vocals at all, so I guess the story isn’t really that important. Let’s start by saying that I really enjoyed listening to the album, the music makes me think of the thrash side of Death and a bit of Testament. This is mainly because of the high pitched vocals of Michael Eriksen Briggs, and the well sounding bass guitars of Jonas Tellefsen, but also the technicality of the songs, driven by the guitars of Briggs and Daniel Emanuelsen, supported by the excellent drums of Marcus Gullovsen. The album is pretty much completely carried by the great guitar riffs of the two guitarists, but the other instrumentalists do a very good job as well to support. The first four (out of five) songs are really good, ‘Zombie’ and ‘Invention Intervention’ are, in my opinion, the best songs of the album and make my head go up and down without any problem. The last song, however, does come with some side notes. I appreciate the fact that the band has tried to create a twenty-three minute lasting thrash metal epic, but they haven’t been able to nail this song. Some moments in the song are a bit chaotic and are missing some structure, it doesn’t feel like one song in its current form. The other songs are somewhere between five and seven minutes long, these songs flow much better.
The band is able to go over the fifty minute mark with just five songs, of which most are really good. Musically it’s all sound, both because of the musicians’ skills and the excellent mix/master of Knut Magne Valle (Ulver, Arcturus). If I had to give some points for improvement I would say that the vocals of Briggs could use some lower tones, with a mediocre audio set his vocals might drop off. I also feel that the band could work on the continuity of the songs and the album, since I didn’t notice it was a conceptual album by the music. Granted, these are small points of criticism, I really did enjoy listening to the album and would recommend it to people who like bands such as Testament or even Death.