Review: Testament "The New Order" (1988 album that is an excellent follow up to their debut The Legacy)
The New Order is an Album That Has Left a Great Legacy on the Heavy Metal Scene
San Francisco area thrash band Testament doesn’t seem to get enough credit for the superb job that they have done throughout their career. Their 1988 studio album The New Order is another example of this outstanding legacy that they have left upon the history of heavy metal. We must address the question of why should heavy metal fans pay attention to Testament and this album when there are bands such as Metallica, Megadeth, and Slayer? There are three main reasons.
The back of the album cover for The New Order
3 Reasons Why Heavy Metal Fans Should Pay Attention to This Album
1. Still present are vocalist Chuck Billy’s exciting screams
2. There is the interesting 1980’s guitar sound.
3. The songs address important social issues that are not always covered enough by the US media. The first song called Eerie Inhabitants is a song that brings attention to many of the social ills that plague our world today. These include fear, chaos, anger, and corruption. Something must be done to address the fact that so many children around the world are dying of starvation.
The New Order is an album that was ahead of its time
The band was wise enough to understand this almost 30 years ago. Note: in 2018, The New Order turns 30 years old and Chuck Billy’s screams still have a memory in the depths of my brain because they are so solid from a vocal standpoint.
I could make the case that The New Order was an album that was ahead of its time. Testament would bring the theme of politics back into focus in 1994 with their inspirational song P.C. They would also address issues regarding the environment in their next album called Practice What You Preach in 1989. Bur for The New Order, this band would show why they were and still are one of the best metal bands to come from the great state of California.
Why is Chuck Billy such a great vocalist in heavy metal?
Chuck Billy’s screams are different compared to other vocalists in the metal genre such as John Arch, Rob Halford, or Phil Anselmo because Chuck just lets it out to emphasize the point that he is here to enthusiastically sing and entertain the world. He never tries to do too much and he is one of the best vocalists in thrash metal. He would especially prove this in the band’s later albums such as Low (1994), Dark Roots of Earth (2012), and Brotherhood of the Snake (2015).
The song called The New Order
The New Order: an album review and analysis
The title track The New Order has an exciting Middle Eastern feel to it with the guitar riffing. The song is about what can happen to cities when they are affected by war. Some people might say that it is only a matter of time before the human race is in big trouble. Trial By Fire is an excellent song about the flaws of the legal and justice system. When you are accused of a crime and have to do the time, it seems as if the entire world is against you. When the system thinks that you are lying about your guilt or innocence, the sentence is that you must spend lots of time in prison or face death. This is what happens in countries that have autocratic governments. Into the Pit is a really heavy and fast song about the fact that the future of the world is in serious peril as people are dying left and right. The next song called Hypnosis is a two minute instrumental that has the sound of thunder in the background. The last song called Musical Death (A Dirge) is a very fitting end to another solid album. Testament were one of the best bands in the 1980’s but they would never be as recognized as Metallica which is a real shame because these guys proved that they could play any style of metal very well. Is The New Order better than the band’s debut? No, but it is close enough and we might as well say that their first three albums are their best along with Low and The Ritual.
The song called Trial By Fire
The Legacy vs. The New Order
Which one of these two early Testament albums do you like more?
The song called Eerie Inhabitants
Favorite Song on The New Order
What is your favorite song on The New Order?
© 2017 Ara Vahanian