Northern Irish band Gama Bomb have just released their latest 100 mph mad-for-it effort Untouchable Glory and it is an album for thrash/speed metal purists to savor. Philly Byrne (vocals), Joe McGuigan (bass), John Roche (guitar), Domo Dixon (lead guitar) and Paul Caffrey (drums) have taken the classic Bay Area thrash sound of the early 1980’s and added a pinch of Udo‘s Accept with some modern blast beats to cook up one nasty long play power shake.
The musical melee is fun, fizzing with furious firefights of fast-driving rock. Gama Bomb wear their musical influences on their sleeves, wiping the Punk-laced snot on the back of their cuffs and shaking the dandruff off their Marshall stacks. Driving guitars weave in and out of songs, moving from the Exodus-like crunch of the opening track “Ninja Untouchables/Untouchable Glory” to the Anthrax-inspired riffing of “Raging Skies” (think Among the Living with Zetro Souza on vocals). The guitar work on songs such as the aforementioned “Raging Skies” is absolutely top notch.
What I liked about this collection was the feel that although the wheels could potentially come off any time, the band were expert enough on their instruments not to drive off the cliff. This is controlled aggression, having a sense of when not to completely overcook the nasty eggs and to release the harmonious hounds of melody. Like Anthrax, Gama Bomb know when to load the catchy hooks and add memorable tunes to the speed fest. In addition, like Anthrax, they do not take themselves too seriously and this can be seen by titles such as “Tuck Your T-Shirt In” and “Witching Mania“- I am tempted to ask “witch” mania they are singing about!
The band may not be the most original of the genre, but what they do is hugely entertaining and they have produced a set of accomplished compositions that many of their peers would be hard pressed to match. Tracks such as “Drinkers INC“, “I Will Haunt You” and “My Evil Eye” are solid thrashers and the whole record does make you want to bang your head…Excuse me, gotta go get an aspirin now.