Point of origin shouldn’t be an issue when talking about the origins of thrash metal. After all, any music aficionado knows it all started in the Bay Area and Southern California.
Get Thrashed, a two-disc set replete with crappy graphics and interspersed commentary from Lars Ulrich (Metallica), Dave Mustaine (Megadeth), Bobby Blitz (Overkill), Mark Osegueda (Death Angel) and others, is a nice yet incomplete addition to anyone’s metal catalog—perfect if you’re looking to simply scratch the surface of the genre.
Although much credit has been given to mega superstars Metallica, its inception can be traced back even further to bands like Exodus, Legacy (the first incarnation of Testament), the almighty Slayer, Megadeth and Possessed. While the East Coast had its fare of long-haired, amphetamine-challenged bands like Overkill, Anthrax and the like, the scene didn’t have the camaraderie and, more importantly, the raw talent that its West Coast brothers had.
And as if we didn’t see his ugly mug enough on various VH1 specials, hearing Anthrax’s Scott Ian wax nostalgic about the late ’80s is just one of the many totally unnecessary moments. However, major props are in order for the inclusion of lesser-known bands, such as Hirax, Sacrifice, Voivod and Exciter, and for making an effort to identify important international bands, like Venom, Celtic Frost, Destruction, Coroner, Destruction and Sodom.
In a scene marred by drug addictions, countless band reconfigurations and playing at tempos faster than humanly possible, the thrash underground has survived to some extent today. The older bands just need to a little more crank to keep up with the new breed.