Bombnation - Night Invasion - (5/10)
Published on November 20, 2014
Bombnation hail from Quebec and play old-school thrash with a slight leaning towards the crossover style of S.O.D., DRI, etc. The band formed in 2007 and Night Invasion is their third full-length release.
The S.O.D. resemblance extends to the track lengths. There may not be any four-second masterpieces here, but most of the songs clock in at under two minutes. Night Invasion sports a range of thrash influences, starting right from the first notes with a riff that sounds just like Nuclear Assault. The song isn’t the carbon copy of Connelly and Lilker’s band that these initial moments suggest it might be, but their influence can be heard on a number of riffs over the course of the album. The thrash influences endure; in line with any number of eighties thrash bands, gang vocals are used for many of the choruses and there are a beer-themed few songs, suggesting a kinship with the likes of Gang Green and Tankard.
This is a band that loves thrash. They namecheck a number of thrash bands along the way and list the likes of Slayer and Suicidal Tendencies among their influences, as well as the bands already mentioned above. Bombnation specialise in abrupt, frenetic thrash tunes, but the focus is perhaps too much on quantity, rather than quality. The songs they produce aren’t awful, but they are lacking any memorable thrash anthems that demand to be played again and again.
“Hops” is catchy, with simple yet effective chants of “we want hops” and while it’s no classic, it is probably the best example of what Bombnation do. At nearly 3 minutes long, “Reggie’s Calling” is an epic by Bombnation standards. It has a big, powerful gang-vocal chorus and some good riffage, but where a guitar solo and final chorus should have been, instead the song just kind of peters out. It’s a real near miss and with a decent solo could have been a quality thrash song.
“Forget It” features brief death metal growling, which provides welcome variation, but isn’t enough to rescue the track from mediocrity. The album finishes reasonably well, as “In The Night” is one of the better songs and includes the longest and best solo. Sadly though, these brighter moments are all too brief in an offering of 18 songs.
To look on the bright side, Bombnation sounds like a band enjoying what they do, which is nice to hear. They would be a great support act; there could be few complaints as they’d get the audience warmed up with well-played, simple thrash to facilitate some pre-headliner moshing and/or drinking. However, they are less effective in the recorded format. There are a few good riffs, choruses and solos scattered throughout the album, but ultimately Night Invasion lacks the songs to stand out in today’s thrash scene.