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Thrash Assault Festival, Wuerzburg: Second Annual German Thrash Metal Festival at Soundpark Ost

The one-day Thrash Assault Festival in Wuerzburg, Germany, features 8 thrash bands ranging from reunited old school thrashers to the best of the new school of thrash metal.

Sabbat and Onslaught: Old School UK Thrash

The 2 bands at the top of the bill, Sabbat and Onslaught, are both reunited old school thrashers from England.

Sabbat came to prominence when their 1988 debut, A History of Time to Come, was released on Noise Records. The Birmingham band’s complex pagan thrash set them apart from the rest of the thrash metal being released at the time.

Things began to fall apart for the band after thir second album, 1989’s Dreamweaver. Guitarist Simon Jones, bassist Frazer Craske, and singer Martin Walkyier all left the band, leaving guitarist Andy Sneap and drummer Simon Negus to recruit replacements to record 1991’s Mourning Has Broken, before disbanding. Walkyier later fronted the band Skyclad, while Sneap became an acclaimed heavy metal record producer and mixer.

Sabbat reformed their classic Dreamweaver lineup in late 2006 to support Cradle of Filth on a UK tour. The reunited Sabbat received rave reviews and went on to perform at a handful of metal festivals throughout 2007.

Bristol’s Onslaught released their debut album, Power From Hell, in 1985. Sy Keeler joined to take over vocal duties for their classic album The Force, which came out in 1986, but was replaced for 1989’s In Search of Sanity by ex-Grim Reaper vocalist Steve Grimmett. Grimmett did not last and Onslaught disbanded in 1991.

In 2004 guitarist Nige Rockett reformed Onslaught with Sy Keeler back on vocals. Onslaught has been together ever since and released Killing Peace, produced by Sabbat’s Andy Sneap, last year on Candlelight records.

Thrash Assault 2 is promising a “very special old school show” by Onslaught, so expect to hear all the best thrashers from Power From Hell and The Force.

Classic Thrash

There is more old school classic thrash on the bill with The Protectors. The Protectors play covers of the classic German band Protector. What sets The Protectors apart from most cover bands is they have former Protector Martin Missy, who sang for Protector from 1987 to 1989, fronting the band.

Virginia Beach thrashers At War released two albums during the 1980s, Ordered to Kill and Retalitory Strike. Over 20 years since their last album, the reformed At War are making their European live debut and are certain to take no prisoners.

Blackened thrashers Desaster released their debut album, A Touch of Medieval Darkness, in 1996, placing the band squarely between the old school and new school of thrash metal. Heavily influenced by early German thrashers like Destruction, Desaster’s set is sure to get heads banging in Wuerzberg.

New School Thrash

Having their song “Zombi Brew” recently appear on Earache records new thrash compilation Thrashing Like A Maniac, Gama Bomb are now in the studio recording their Earache debut Citizen Brain. Gama Bomb’s first album, Survival of the Fastest, came out in 2006 on small German metal label Witches Brew.

Rounding out the bill are the German bands, Runamok, who recently had their third album Freak Business released by legendary metal label Mausoleum records, and unholy thrashers Nocturnal.

The Thrash Assault 2 Festival is presented by the Keep It True and Up From the Ground metal festivals and the German edition of Metal Hammer magazine. Tickets are priced at 21 Euros and ticket information can be found on the Thrash Assault 2 Festival MySpace page.

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