SPEED\KILL/HATE
"Acts of Insanity"

(Escapi)

01. Walls of Hate
02. Setting me Off
03. Violence Breeds
04. Slay the Enemy
05. Won't See Fear
06. Face the Pain
07. Revelation at War (R.A.W.)
08. Not for Me
09. Repent

RATING: 7.5/10

Here is a group that was not about to play around with clever band titles that lend an air of mystery to the musical style. The terms "speed," "kill," and "hate" sum up pretty well the heavy thrash of this sonic punch in the nose. Considering the blue collar, no-frills approach, it will come as no surprise that three-fourths of the unit that played on "Acts of Insanity" are (or have been) members of OVERKILL. Said members include Dave Linsk (guitarist, producer, and project mastermind), Tim Mallare (drums), and bassist Derek Tailer (an angry Mario Frasca holds down the vocal position). However, the OVERKILL comparisons stop with the no-nonsense attack, as SPEED\KILL/HATE is a much heavier affair. The songs on "Acts of Insanity" are faster and decidedly more brutal. The band also takes cues from acts like SLAYER and modern day EXODUS, while I can also hear the heavier moments of a group like BRICK BATH. However, those are mere reference points, as SPEED\KILL/HATE in many ways strips the brutality down to its bare essence, offering songs that, while not clones of one another, attempt to be little more than a collective 36-minute concussion.

And man is this sucker fast! The speedometer needle stays firmly in the red from start to finish. The drumming style of Tim Mallare (replaced by SINDROME's Tony Ochoa) is subtle as a battering ram, his double-bass lethality and merciless stick violence a serious threat to woofers and tweeters everywhere. The riffs may not be inventive, but are thick, chunky, and thrashed up to the core. The solos unleashed are not flashy, just cutting and to the point. There is not a lot of breathing room in Linsk's production, the idea being to crush the listener with sheer tonnage and audio suffocation. Frasca's vocal delivery is constant rage. Rooted in a quasi-hardcore barking style (do NOT think traditional hardcore or metalcore) with a healthy dose of Phil Anselmo and to a lesser extent Tom Araya.

As for the songs, take your pick, as the intensity level never wavers. We'll mention a few. "Revelation at War (R.A.W.)" boot-stomps its way into your heart, while highlights "Face the Pain" and "Walls of Hate" incorporate drill-sergeant backing shouts that are wisely set in the middle of the mix (as opposed to the typically overdone gang shout variety) with face-melting riffs and a dangerous high-speed approach. So ok, I exaggerated a tiny a bit about the constancy of tempo, as "Not for Me" slows down just a hair (and effectively so), it being one example where I could hear a little modern day EXODUS. Put simply, "Acts of a Insanity" is a swift kick to the privates that may not result in dropped jaws for its arrangement complexity, but will certainly break jaws with its bloody-knuckles solution for conflict.

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