24 Aug 2016

Master Fury: "Circles of Hell"

Obscure heavyweights on CD for the first time
No doubt the US played an essential role in the rise of thrash metal in the 80s. While bands like Metallica, Anthrax, Slayer, Megadeth, Testament, Overkill, Flotsam & Jetsam, Forbidden and more are usually the first that come to mind, hidden gems like Holocross, Heretic, Powerlord and Master Fury must not be forgotten.

Master Fury formed in 1986, when the thrash scene was already boiling with barely contained anger and mosh pits spanned entire venues. It wasn't until '88 that they unleashed their rough thrash tunes in album format with Hell Party, echoed in '89 by the barbarous follow-up Circles of Hate. At a point, while working on a third album to be entitled Dreams of War, the band split up, and the album never was. After a brief reunion in 2010, Contaminated Tones Productions saw fit to finally release the half-forgotten thrashers on CD for the first time, with the release Circles of Hell which compiles the group's two albums.

"The preciseness of their riffs shine through the metallic din of abrasive distortion,"

Master Fury stands out as being the American thrash family's black sheep - Their sound is unruly, aggressive and unhinged, lingering just on the outskirts of chaos, where speed and roughness are key. The preciseness of their riffs shine through the metallic din of abrasive distortion, with Hell Party - the debut - culminating in a mosh-inducing final track appropriately named Riot.

The follow up, Circles of Hate, doesn't let up in terms of speed and relentlessness, but as musicians the trio have made progress. On Hell Party, they let the tempo do the talking, but on their sophomore effort they are more comfortable with slowing down just once in a while to accentuate the heaviness of the riffs, refining their already shredding tunes into a more discerning form.

When it comes to songwriting, Master Fury doesn't go for the easy-to-follow Metallica ethos. Instead, they rely on ferocious beats, a few gang-shouts on Circles of Hate, Motörhead/Venom inspired thrash riffs and a completely deranged sound. The band perfectly sum up their sound with just their name, more or less rivaling bands like Morbid Saint or Kreator in fury. They may not have authored the most memorable albums, but the uncompromising nature of their sound yet lends them an unforgettable momentum.


Released in 2013 by Contaminated Tones Productions


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