Buried In The Front Yard
Strong delivery of modern day thrash
Surely a name like Rumpelstiltskin Grinder has to be a contender for one of the coolest and unique band names in quite some time. Unique monikers aside, these Pennsylvania (USA) natives (who are vocalist Eli Shaika, guitarists Ryan Moll and Matt Moore, bassist Shawn Riley and drummer Patrick Battaglia) came together sometime in 2002 and have since released a limited edition (100 copies only) live CD-R titled Live At The Dungeon (in 2003) and a split 7” single with Jumbo's Kill Crane called Equipment Crusher as a precursor to their debut full length Buried In The Front Yard.
With only a slight build up, Stealing E.T. instantly unleashes a modern day thrash attack that doesn't let up for the next 35 minutes. The dry production along the lines of Atrophy, Coroner and Kreator perfectly suits the band's neo-thrash style. There's harmony leads a plenty backed by a relentless double kick attack but it's Shaika's call for everyone to “Thrash!!” that marks the first of many blistering lead breaks with the rhythmic backbone to match it. Showing hints of Chuck Schuldiner's Spiritual Healing era vocals in Shaika's performance as well as busting out the gang vocals are the assertive Orange And Black Attack (with screams of “No! We're not fucking around!”) and the furious Grab A Shovel (We've Got Bodies To Bury).
Showing that Rumpelstiltskin Grinder are not just a one trick pony, The Day Merman Met Todd “The Harpoon” Wilson stops suddenly with an acoustic interjection whilst the later track Grinder builds to a melodic and epic ending layered with open ringing distorted guitars backed by their acoustic equivalents. With some parts that would defy classifying the band's style, Unleash The Troll is for the most part a straight forward thrash number with a blistering lead over machine gun like drumming. Let The Fools Cheer is driven by a barrage of double kick work and chugging guitars before the closer, Ode To Tanks slides the handbrake on a little whilst still dishing out plenty of moshtastic guitar work.
The enunciated, snarling vocals, A1 musicianship and dry “old school” production are all perfectly matched with the thrash-o-rama that Rumpelstiltskin Grinder have created with Buried In The Front Yard. This album is not just a throwback to the glory days of thrash. It's a sign that with acts like Rumpelstiltskin Grinder and Municipal Waste emerging with strong releases along side veterans such as Exodus and Kreator, the future of thrash metal within the grand scheme of today's metal scene is certainly looking bright.
(Relapse Records/Riot! Distribution)