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Review: "Practice What You Preach" the Best Album by Testament in the 1980's

Updated on May 6, 2022
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Ara is a journalism graduate from California State University, Northridge, who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.

Why is Testament one of the best heavy metal bands?

By 1989, American thrash metal band Testament had already released two very solid thrash metal albums and it looked like they were getting even better. Their 1989 album called Practice What You Preach is another example of why these guys are so great. Their pretty efficient bass lines, the outstanding vocals by front man Chuck Billy, and their overall awesome songs make them one of the best metal bands period. The case could even be made that Practice What You Preach could be considered the band’s best album in the 1980’s though such a ranking is pretty subjective.

Practice What You Preach: songs 1-3 Including the Catchy Song Perilous Nation

Although Testament is not classified as a melodic thrash metal band in the literal sense, it is appropriate to classify them as such because their music has so much melody in it. The band Annihilator would emerge later on in the 1990’s as one of the premier melodic thrash metal bands in the world and they just might as well have been influenced by Testament. The interlude in the great song "Perilous Nation" is evidence of the melodic nature of Testament. The song is about urging others to create a better world for the human race by taking that journey, painting pictures of what they see so that they can bring attention of what needs to be done in order to create that better world. The album is also a sort of rebellion against the established order of things. One example of this is the song called "Time is Coming." The president of the United States is just one man in the government but he will impose taxes on the people and the laws of the country are seen as nothing but a conspiracy. The government thinks that they sympathize with people’s rights but it is just a big disguise. The American political system has become a giant money making scheme as these big corporations give money to these candidates who must do their bidding or face consequences. Perilous Nation in particular has that part where it is really melodic and sounds like an interlude but it is not an interlude. Nonetheless, that part once again shows the immense creativity of the band Testament.

Envy Life Is a Song Worth Listening To

One song that may be underrated is the pretty catchy song called Envy Life. Gone are the high screams that we heard on this band’s first two albums and instead Chuck’s voice has improved and matured.

"Perilous Nation"

The importance of the song Greenhouse Effect

The song called Greenhouse Effect is a song about what can happen to the environment that we live in if people ignore the burning forests and the toxic fumes and chemicals that pollute the air. The song is trying to say that the only hope that we have to breathe cleaner air is to “stop the madness closing in.” What will we do as humans if there is an environmental holocaust? Climate change and the destruction of the environment are two very real world problems that must be addressed and I am glad that Testament brings up the subject to raise awareness of what humans are doing to the land and air.

The song called "Greenhouse Effect"

Practice What You Preach: Analysis of the Song Sins of Omission

The song called "Sins of Omission" is a song about not having a false sense of pride. To put this term another way, don’t have a false sense of pride. Suicide is a bad option and we should instead the powers of our mind to find the meaning of our existence. Once again, the band’s philosophical approach to songwriting can really help listeners gain some perspective on their own lives. Testament is an example of what is good about the United States: talented musicians that are spending their time and effort to educate the public about what should be done to create a better life and world.

"Sins of Omission"

Analysis of the Songs The Ballad, Nightmare (Coming Back to You) and Confusion Fusion

"The Ballad" is a semi-ballad song about realizing that you are now free to live your own life after having made so many mistakes that were costly. As long as we are happy to just be alive and doing the things that we enjoy doing sometimes that is what matters the most. The song "Nightmare (Coming Back to You)" is a really fast song that has some really excellent lead guitar work and it is about trying to fight and battle against those forces that created a nightmare for our lives. We know that we will eventually emerge victorious. "Confusion Fusion" is a three minute instrumental song to end another solid album from this band.

Best Testament album of the 1980's

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"Nightmare Coming Back to You"

Final Thoughts About Practice What You Preach

Is Practice What You Preach Testament’s best album? It is tough to say because so many of their albums are so good but this one is definitely one of the best works they have ever created. By this time in their career, Testament had already created three very solid albums and they were on their way to even better times. Even if I think that Souls of Black is one of their weaker albums, that one is even at least good. The riffs in Practice What You Preach are even more complex and it is in this album that we really start to see another side of Testament. And then, you have the singing style of the song Time Is Coming and that is yet another aspect of Testament that some fans may overlook. Testament is definitely the best American thrash metal band at least in my lifetime and they may be the best thrash metal band to come out of the United States.

"Envy Life"

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2017 Ara Vahanian


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