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Executioner’s Song

Viper (1985)
Rating: 9/10

This Canadian quartet caused quite a stir with the release of their self-financed Armed And Dangerous mini-album, and now the band are back with a six-year recording deal with Viper Records, the new 100% heavy metal label launched by Attic Records.

Executioner’s Song features 11 killer tracks, of which four – ‘Take This Torch’, ‘Fast And Loud’, ‘Hot Metal’ and ‘The End’ – are remixed, more polished versions of those found on Armed And Dangerous. ‘Take This Torch’ is absolutely brilliant; one of the best power metal tracks of ’84.

The newer material is generally more thrash oriented, especially ‘City Of Damnation’, ‘Escape The Fire’ and ‘March Of Death’, where Razor have taken their earlier Metallica influences into Slayer territory to produce a deluge of power and mayhem that’s second to none.

‘Deathrace’ and ‘Distant Thunder’ do show touches of Metallica, while ‘Time Bomb’ and the fast ‘n’ furious ‘Gatecrasher’ are more in the Motörhead vein, especially with the raw aggressive vocals of Stace ‘Sheepdog’ McLaren whose also capable of throwing in some Rob Halford-like screams to great effect.

Executioner’s Song is without a doubt one of the best power / thrash metal releases of ’85 so far, and deserves to break Razor into global underground acceptance.

Bernard Doe

Review taken from Metal Forces, Issue 10 (1985)