Review of the Albums Formation & Feast Upon the Helpless by American Thrash Metal Band Bray Road
The Cover of the Album "Formation"
About the Mini Album "Formation"
“Formation” is the 2019 extended play (EP) album by Milwaukee, Wisconsin based thrash metal band Bray Road. I have not been covering much of the newer US thrash metal bands but have decided to give this one a listen and see what these guys are made of. Formation is the first of two albums by Bray Road that we will review.
Where the Band's Name Bray Road Comes From
The band’s name comes from an actual road that is in the city of Elkhorn, Wisconsin where there are stories of the werewolf like creature the Beast of Bray Road tends to stalk humans in rural areas.
A Review of the Mini Album "Formation"
The vocals sound a bit like former Annihilator vocalist Dave Padden. Dave Padden has the obvious upper hand compared to the vocals we hear from Bray Road.
The Extended Play album is six songs for a total of less than 24 minutes of groovy thrash metal so for those of you that don’t have the patience to sit through long albums this one is perfect for you. Is this EP better than the last full length album review that you guys have seen? I am biased in that regard but cannot say for sure whether Bray Road is a better band than Shakma but their lyrical content is of the variety that may be tough for some fans of the genre to handle. Sometimes At Night starts off this mini album with a System of a Down type of acoustic part and there is narration about wolf like creatures living in the realm of psychology and Wisconsin.
A Review of the 2017 Album Feast Upon the Helpless the First Half
Since Formation is such a short album we might as well take a look at this band’s second studio album called Feast Upon the Helpless as well. After a short intro, we are treated to some Kreator style thrash metal with the song called Tortured. However, the song slows down and Bray Road tries to sound like a mixture of Annihilator and Kreator but unfortunately, they cannot match the creativity of those two bands at least in the beginning. The album tends to focus a bit too much on lyrical content that discusses getting even with those we do not like. What it is it with some of these American bands that have the focus on such lyrical content? Maybe they write this way in order to sell more of their works and what we have here is just some standard thrash metal that so far lacks that wow factor. This does not mean that Bray Road is a bad thrash metal band. It just means that they do not have the instrumentation to be considered an elite thrash metal band.
"Formation" 2019 Mini Album
Feast Upon the Helpless: the Other Songs
The Beast lyrically is similar to Judas Priest’s Nightcrawler song as this kind of a topic has been done so often that it is definitely going to make for a stale thrash metal release. Bray Road is a decent band and they have their moments though. Baptized in Pain is a song that is about a man that is full of rage that he will do what he can to make life a living hell for others. Juggernaut is a song that is about someone that wants to fight for his country and sacrifice his life for the leader that he loves. He is at war and fighting for the preservation of the embassy as he says. Even if Formation is a good extended play album which it is this does not put Bray Road into the elite category in terms of thrash metal bands worldwide.
© 2019 Ara Vahanian