Since Distillator’s formation in 2013, a subsequent EP, their 2015 debut LP ‘Revolutionary Cells’, a successful appearance on the 70,000 Tons of Metal cruise, and various tour runs throughout Europe, they’ve established themselves as some serious players in the international thrash metal scene. Their initial introduction gave critics and fans flashbacks to the early years of band’s like Slayer, Metallica, Exodus, Sodom, Testament, Metallica, et al.
Their second, and newest, LP ‘Summoning the Malicious’ takes the necessary steps to retain the reputation they’ve earned and builds upon that foundation with considerable substance. From the opening track, “Blinded By Chauvinism,” Distillator charges with precision and speed, both of which stays a constant from start to finish. They apply elements of musical experimentation with the same immediacy that the album has.
Tracks like “Mechanized Existence,” the title track, “Enter the Void” utilize some unorthodox, diminished and high registered progressions, while they use clean guitars that help create atmospherics on tracks like “Megalomania.” Lyrically, Distillator continues with their initial concept of bringing social and world issues into the light. Where began ‘Revolutionary Cells’ by recalling those of the 20th Century, ‘Summoning the Malicious’ takes today head-on and braces for tomorrow.
Some trios take more advantage of studio luxuries than others; things like excessive overdubbing, sound boosting, multi-layering. ‘Summoning the Malicious’ has a ‘traditional’ feel that keeps the mids reined in somewhat, preventing the aforementioned speed and precision from becoming muddled up. Foregoing the added extras in the studio keeps the live experience honest. If you’re looking for comparisons here, think Sodom/Destruction circa 1986 with accents of ‘Bonded by Blood’; ‘Summoning the Malicious’ has a categorically European ‘classic’ thrash metal sound that doesn’t trap itself in the past. That’s a good thing coming from such a band that offers the potential for longevity. And just to put it out there to the universe, Distillator and Evil Invaders would be a great fucking night.