Vexovoid – Call of the Starforger

From the onset of “Call of the Starforger”, Italy’s Vexovoid makes their primary influence immediately clear. These guys like Vektor. A lot. While they don’t outright steal anything from Vektor, they’re probably the closest sounding band to emulating the modern thrash stalwarts’ style. “Call of the Starforger” is a briefer experience than any of the three albums from the comparable band, but it is equally filled with an array of dizzying riffs predicated on awkward chord combinations and plenty of dissonance. Topping off the madness is a shrieky vocalist who must be doing some permanent damage to his voice to create such a torturous set of screams. Aiding his complex vocals is a set of complex lyrics. Unsurprisingly, sci-fi is the theme here, and even though it is definitely becoming overdone in modern thrash, nothing else could be more appropriate for a band that conjures an intergalactic atmosphere throughout their record.

Much like their American counterparts, Vexovoid is at their best when unleashing high-intensity thrash. It’s often hard to even process what the riffs are when played at lightning speed, but it creates a more chaotic maelstrom of metal that has yet to run thin. The tamer moments succeed when they rely on simplistic melodies that offer direct contrast to the band’s wilder side. In general, the band primarily utilizes the former sound, which is sure to be enough to satisfy any self-respecting thrasher. It is for this reason that the lack of overt songwriting isn’t too much cause for concern. Some of the later tracks (“Dead Planets Throne” and “The Starforger” in particular) are fairly memorable efforts, but most songs are simply part of the journey known as “Call of the Starforger”. Unlike Vektor’s music, many of these songs lack those killer parts that make individual tracks stand out above the crowd.

Even despite these criticisms, “Call of the Starforger” is an undeniably great record. The amount of skill and vision that a band requires to create music this complex in a coherent manner explains why Vektor has so few true clones despite every band now playing sci-fi themed technical thrash metal. Vexovoid is about as authentic as you can get, short of getting David DiSanto behind the mic. With a slightly increased focus on simplifying a riff or two in each song to get something more memorable, Vexovoid would near the top of the thrash class.

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Highlights
“Dead Planets Throne”
“The Starforger”

Final Rating
4.5/5 or 90%.

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