TOXIK – Dis Morta

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When listening to World Circus and its opener Heart Attack for the first time as a teenager in 1987, I was just amazed. Through the Big 4 – Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax, Megadeth – I already knew what thrash metal was, but Toxik played on a completely different level. Although the material on World Circus and its successor Think This was much more complex, the hoped-for success unfortunately never happened and Toxik disbanded in 1992. The band never fell into oblivion for me, these two cult albums always found their way back onto my turntable at home.

In 2013 Toxik made a comeback and 9 years later Dis Morta can finally be called a regular third album. The only constant in Toxik is founding member, songwriter and guitarist Josh Christian, who is known for changing his musicians quite often and quickly. In any case, Josh Christian has once again shown the right instinct in choosing his new band members. He himself is slowly approaching 60, but age does not show on him. The man is a real workaholic and doesn't find any rest until he's knocked the best out of every single song. The speed used to play enormously complex guitar riffs is extraordinary. No less astonishing is the age of singer Ron Iglesias, who wasn't even born when the Toxik debut was released. He’s a real fanboy, because this young man sounds exactly like Mike Sanders and Charles Sabin on the first two albums. He is a master of high notes and can keep up at high speed without losing his breath. This style of singing is definitely not in fashion any more, but I am thrilled as this album reminds me enormously of my youth.

Dis Morta also plays in the top league in terms of songwriting. The tempo is once again kept high, breaks to take a breather are rather rare. A title like Power keeps exactly what it promises, and this is far from being the best track on the album. The opener and title track is a more than successful anthem with great structures. Hyper Reality is the most progressive piece of the album and with these bizarre structures you can sometimes lose track. Creating The Abyss is also one of the better tracks on the album. After a somewhat unusually brutal start, the progressive middle section seems confusing, but also very fun. In general, the album picks up speed more and more towards the end. Chasing Mercury is very theatrical and dramatic, before the absolute climax of the album is reached with Devil In The Mirror and the accompanying Judas. These songs are bursting with ideas and sweep you along right from the start. They will definitely be part of the classics of Toxik's live repertoire. 

As usual, Toxik's lyrics are slightly negative. The band already pointed out in the 80s that people are naive and gullible because they are too easily influenced by the media. It is quite clear that in the digital age, the situation didn’t improve. 

Even though Toxik are very active on social media, Dis Morta sounds like a time travel of about 35 years into the past. The powerful production shows that the album has been recorded with the means of today. Let's hope that we won't have to wait for another few decades to hear something new from Toxik.

10 songs

49:49 minutes

***** ***

Genre: power speed metal

Label: Massacre

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