During the 80’s, a belligerent integration of metal music and hardcore punk had birthed a chaotic form of music known as grindcore. Musicians in this genre had one goal in mind and that was to play music as fast as possible. The abrasive sounds that the genre produced were not just going against the grain of popular music, but completely disrupted the status quo of music, period. Napalm Death, Repulsion and Extreme Noise Terror were just a few of the influential names that crafted the parts that make up the genre, but no group played faster than death/grind act Terrorizer.

The band’s debut album ‘World Downfall’ has been renowned as one of the greatest extreme metal records of all time. The album saw unparalleled percussive speed provided by current and only drummer for the band, Pete “Commando” Sandoval. Guitarist Jesse Pintado provided advanced guitar rhythms and high-speed riffs that were just as precise as they were gritty. Pintado played guitar for grindcore legends Napalm Death on seven studio albums and did work with other acts, including Lock Up and Brujeria. He did one more record with Terrorizer in 2006 titled ‘Darker Days Ahead’ before his unfortunate death the same year. The band had gone through some line-up changes and went on to release ‘Hordes of Zombies’ six years later. Fast forward another six years to today and the band are releasing their fourth studio album, ‘Caustic Attack’ on October 12th via The End Records.

Featuring none other than the commando himself Pete Sandoval on drum duties, ‘Caustic Attack’ sees the addition of the great Lee Harrison (drummer of legendary death metal group Monstrosity) on guitar and the ruthless Sam Molina on bass/vocals. Detonating with unforgiving force, opening track Turbulence sees the band making a statement early on. A statement that would read along the lines of “fuck slowing down, that is not something Terrorizer would ever do.” Molina enters with a very balanced growl that has a nice mid-ranged guttural to it. With the blender now fully powered on, a ripping evil riff splits open track two, Invasion. This song’s main riff creates an infectious atmosphere of nostalgia reminiscent of classic 90’s death metal. A lot of the band’s deep roots and rapid riffing comes through in this song, riffs that would undoubtedly make Pintado proud.

This nostalgic atmosphere exists throughout the entirety of the record and grows stronger in tracks like Trench Of Corruption and Terror Cycles. Both tracks offering thundering transitions that reek of erratic riffing. Switching up blast beats from cymbal to cymbal, Conflict And Despair sees Sandoval utilizing the blasting speed and double bass patterns he is infamously known for.

The songwriting on this album is certainly well put together and tracks like Devastate and Wasteland offer a lot of rhythmic breaks that are fresh for an old-school band like Terrorizer. Guitarist Harrison is able to create a lot more depth on tracks like these that showcase just how many badass parts they can add into one song. Break-neck bell riding grooves in tracks like war metal thrasher Infiltration and Crisis, makeup for a lot of the segments on this record. These transitions show a much heavier and groovy side to this band than ever heard before.

Generating some of the records greatest velocity are the hardcore punk inspired tracks Sharp Knives, Poison Gas Tsunami, and the title track Caustic Attack. Caustic Attack is a song that embodies the grinding spirit of Terrorizer in 2018. Totaling in just one minute, it is fast, gripping, and chews you up and spits you out. It also houses Sandoval’s most mechanical drum fill on the record. Having had back surgery in 2009, Sandoval was uncertain how things would work out behind the kit. However, there is no doubt that he is at the top of his game and Failed Assassin is a testament to that. He goes around the entire kit with lightning fast sticks multiples times throughout this unrelenting track. With ‘Caustic Attack,’ he holds his title as the fastest and most precise drummer in death metal.

Caustic Attack’ sees the legendary Terrorizer becoming more diverse than ever. Diverse in both transitions and song structures that add more elements of death metal to each song. That being said, it is just as unrelenting as their older works and their reputation as fastest grindcore band still holds strong. This band is responsible for the creme de la creme of extreme metal records and twenty nine years later with ‘Caustic Attack’ they show that they have not lost their touch one bit.