For bassist/vocalist Thomas "Angelripper" Such, his thrash metal band SODOM is a perfect vehicle to bluntly take a stand. Like few other musicians on this scene, he personifies — along with down-to-earthiness and honesty — a healthily critical position on political authorities and decision-makers from finance and industry. On their latest album, "In War And Pieces", SODOM focuses on the worst excesses of power: arrogance, greed, spotlight-seeking, fanaticism, corruption, cowardice and oppression. Tom strates, "I've always written about what's going on in the world, about the injustice and mistakes that happen everywhere. I know that you can't change anything politically that way, but I would like to at least comment on the situation and generate an awareness of this deplorable state of affairs. Being a singer in a metal band allows me to voice my anger to a large audience."
This uncompromising attitude marks the eleven songs on sodom's latest album which could hardly sound more dynamic and violent. "In War And Pieces" owes its bloodcurdling energy largely to producer Waldemar Sorychta (GRIP INC., ENEMY OF THE SUN), whose great skill and commitment were instrumental in creating the album's — as Tom calls it — "phat, brutal and open" sound. With Sorychta's support, Angelripper (vocals, bass), Bernemann (guitar) and Bobby Schottkowski (drums) succeeded in adding new impulses to their music without watering down the band's long tradition. "Waldemar is a great musician himself and has done some brilliant work, especially on the guitar sound," Tom explains. "He knows how to get the absolute maximum out of a speaker."
As brutal as the production is the diverse songwriting on "In War And Pieces", a kind of tour de force through the whole history of thrash metal, featuring harsh arrangements, melodic solos and raging vocal attacks. "I feel that we sound more contemporary and structured than we did on our recent releases," Tom analyzes. "At the same time, there are also references to recordings such as 'Persecution Mania' and 'Agent Orange'. After VENOM, SODOM were the world's first angry band, and nothing has changed that." Tom lists as examples the impressive title track, as well as "The Art Of Killing Poetry" with its ultra-deep guitar atmospheres and the German-language song, 'Knarrenheinz', which holds up the tradition of classics such as 'Bombenhagel' and "Ausgebombt". "Knarrenheinz is the mascot on the album cover, that's why I felt he deserved his own lyrics," Tom grins. Talking of album covers: the artwork was designed by Eliran Kantor, who enjoys an excellent reputation on the scene thanks to his work for renowned acts such as TESTAMENT, GWAR and MEKONG DELTA.
"In War And Pieces" will be released in North America on January 11, 2011 and in Europe on November 22, 2010 via SPV/Steamhammer.
The track listing for the CD is as follows:
01. In War And Pieces
03. Through Toxic Veins
04. Nothing Counts More Than Blood
05. Storm Raging Up
06. Feigned Death Throes
07. Soul Contraband
08. God Bless You
09. The Art Of Killing Poetry
11. Styptic Parasite