Kreator
Endless Pain/Pleasure to Kill/Terrible Certainty/Extreme Aggression (Reissues)

Germany has always been responsible for some of the best metal bands.  I would say the best countries for overall metal has been: U.S., Germany and England.  For me, Kreator are the best German thrash band and always one of my faves.  Each paragraph will focus on more of the bonus content, remastering and personal observations regarding the time era of the original recordings.

Endless Pain was released in 1985 and I remember getting this on vinyl for a Christmas gift. I could not believe how much more brutal it was then American acts. The vocals of Mille and Ventor combined to make a very dynamic thrash metal album.  The title track, “Tormentor”, “Flag of Hate” and “Dying Victims” are personal faves. This record began making some waves in the underground.  The bonus content here is not too different than the excellent 2000 remaster.  This contains an extra demo and the mediabook is gorgeous.  Great liners and artwork and vintage pics.  Noise could have included a DVD like they did with the Voivod reissues.  The ball was dropped here.  Andy Pearce has done a new remastering of this as well as the other reissues mentioned here. The new remastering actually is louder, fuller and crisper than the former reissue. I was impressed with how the guitars cut through more and hearing those nuances more and the double bass more powerful.

Pleasure to Kill was a highlight for 1986 metal.  This is my favorite Kreator record and Kreator took their death thrash approach in more of a death metal direction and the brutality is even more so.  Personal faves, “Ripping Corpse”, the title track, “Death is Your Saviour” and “The Pestilence”. This is one of the most violent sounding records. I’ve had this album in every format.  Kreator began touring more and getting their name out more. Reviews were mostly positive at the time.  The same bonus content from the 2000 reissue is here. The Flag of Hate ep; & nothing more. This sucks that Noise once again dropped the ball and no live DVD included.  I used to buy bootlegged VHS concerts all those yrs ago and had a live Kreator show in Germany at a club called The Pforzeihm (sp?).  The footage was dicey and the band had a lot of sound problems where there were excessively long delays between some songs. The band were energetic and one of the highlights is Kreator covering S.O.D.’s “March of the S.O.D.” and “Sargent ‘D’  and the S.O.D.”   Super cool. The mediabook is fantastic with the liners and artwork and lyrics. The remastering is quite similar to the 2000 reissue. Slightly louder, but a negligible purchase.

Terrible Certainty was unleashed in 1987 and this was another Christmas vinyl gift.  Kreator dropped their death metal style and went full on thrash.  Album highlights for me: “Blind Faith”, “Storming with Menace”, “Toxic Trace” and “Behind the Mirror”.  Better reviews surrounded this record and the band toured with Voivod. MTV Headbanger’s Ball played the “Toxic Trace” video often, but in America rarely.  Bullshit. This reissue has a second disc, which adds a few extra live tracks, missing in the 2000 reissue. The Out of the Dark…Into the Light is here all packaged beautifully in the mediabook. The sound is slightly louder than the prior reissue with the guitars and vocals sounding crisper.

1989 brought along Extreme Aggression, one of the best and most popular Kreator albums. This platooned the act into  a popularity the band had not yet experienced. Highlight songs are the title track, “Some Pain will Last”, “Betrayer” and “Fatal Energy”.  The video for “Betrayer” had heavy rotation on Headbanger’s Ball.  My first time seeing Kreator live was on this headlining tour where they had Coroner open for them. The show was outstanding. Mille was hanging out and I spoke with him. He was down to earth and super appreciative.  I told him my favorite Kreator song was “The Pestilence”. He said, “good, we’re playing it live tonight”. So yes, that was a live highlight for me.  This album has never been remastered until now and the sound is fantastic.  Crisp, loud, brutal and in your face. The bonus disc is a live audio 1990 concert from Berlin. It’s awesome, but should have been a DVD here as this has been released prior on video. The packaging is like the other mediabooks and is stocked with lyrics, liners, pics and artwork.

So there you have it. Some of the reissues are similar to the 2000 ones making some of these purchases unnecessary.  Noise could have marketed these and the Celtic Frost reissues a lot more desirable had DVD’s been included, as these 2 bands were their top sellers alongside Voivod and Helloween.  If you have no Kreator reissues these are Buy or Die purchases.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Frank Rini
December 20th, 2017

Comments

  1. Commented by: Nick Taxidermy

    the song Pleasure To Kill shows up as both a musical cue and plot point on that german Netflix show DARK. pretty fucking awesome.


  2. Commented by: Rabid1

    I had the fortune of seeing Kreator live (finally!) in October, along with Tombs, Goatwhore, and 1349. Kreator slayed and their performance of ‘Pleasure to Kill’ to close out the night was worth the price of admission, alone.

    On a side @ Nick Taxidermy – my wife and I started watching Dark last night. Awesome show so far, two episodes in.


  3. Commented by: Nick Taxidermy

    It’s a great show. Nice to see some nods to metal on a good sci fi series.


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