Violent Journey Records (2012)
I remember an interview I did with Henny Wolter recently when he talked about how much you cherish the indelible imprint bands of your teenage years and the mark they make on your life. It’s probably why acts of a traditional, power, progressive, and thrash metal nature resonate much more loudly than any other genres- from 13 to 19 those four styles encapsulated a majority of my attention (and record collection). So even when it’s time to hear a traditional band like Finland’s Adastra for the first time on their third full length “Corroder Of Minds”, it’s natural to give them more than a casual glance.
Forming in 2001 and gradually ascending the ranks from cover songs to original tracks, a few demos and EP’s later they received their record deal with Violent Journey in 2007. The five piece stick to a conventional traditional approach, with influences mostly coming from the Judas Priest, Dio, and Black Sabbath mold on these 8 tracks. Guitarists Jari Hartman and Olli Anttila even add a little Metallica flair to some of their faster riffing in the up tempo charger “Backstabber”, while the 8:43 “Vortex” gives the two axe wielders a chance to showcase some of their slower twin harmonic abilities. Most of the drum work from Jussi Ruokolainen keeps the proceedings in a basic four on the floor groove mode, although some of the floor tom and rolls within “Widow Maker” resemble early Clive Burr in terms of hitting power and finesse.
Where “Corroder Of Minds” may lose a few followers is in the sneering vocal parts from Ville Siikamaki. When Ville attempts to hold out a note beyond his range (or even a trailing chorus note), its slightly cringe worthy as you can hear the pitchy-ness. We do not have a Halford, Dickinson, or Dio in the midst for songs like “Going Out For Good” or the title track.
I’ll keep an eye on Adastra. Very British in their approach, there is plenty to dig musically for the traditional, true denim and leather crowd- so “Corroder Of Minds” could be a sleeper gem for some.
Rating: 3.5 / 6
Composed by Matt Coe