Virus - A New Strain Of An Old Disease

Virus were one of the first thrash metal bands I ever heard. I received a cassette copy of their 1989 album Lunacy when I was a young'un (yeah, CASSETTE) and bloody loved it, as as time went on I found myself loving their post-reunion output and sharing the stage with them a great many times. The release of 2009's Raped By Mutants EP was a strong indication of what Coke Finlay and his crew are still capable of, and A New Strain of An Old Disease is a solid continuation of their sound.

This new EP is a prime example of modernising a classic sound; it's primitive, raw and extremely aggressive in typical eighties Virus style, but meticulous in approach and carefully produced to complement the style presented. This is what thrash metal used to sound like before it got watered down by all of the pretenders to the throne - Coke Finlay has frequently discussed his frustration with modern thrash metal bands with me, finding many of them to be either playing it safe by being poor imitations or simply just lacking the legitimate anger and energy that this sort of music demands. And you know what, I'd be hard pressed to disagree with his sentiments but it's good to know that Coke can back up his words with appropriate action. There may not quite be as many catchy, crowd-chanting choruses here as there were on the last release, but this EP is thrash to the core... minus the hidden bonus track, which I haven't listed nor shall I name here. Let's leave it a surprise, and I'll just say... well, I couldn't stop laughing the first time I heard it.

Short and sweet. A New Strain of An Old Disease is a definitive example of classic thrash metal modernised properly and without fear - yes, it may not be the greatest EP in the genre but the sheer energy and genuine sense of aggression on display here is probably the main reason you should pick this up. Fed up of thrash bands sounding tired, as if they're just going through the motions to get their 15 minutes of fame? Try Virus' latest release. A solid reminder as to why I fell in love with the genre in the first place.

1. Contagion (Intro)
2. Decline
3. Beyond The Boundaries Of Brutality
4. Human Disposal Unit
5. Murder In The Moshpit
6. A New Strain Of An Old Disease (instrumental)