Unlike the highly polished, high-octane, modern Swedish Thrash assault found on the Tomas Lindberg fronted "Crowned In Terror" (their last release), "Possessed 13" sees THE CROWN ignoring trends with an album that has more in common with the early Thrash Metal bands who pioneered the genre in the mid to late 80s. Though none can refute the quality of the material found on "Crowned In Terror", one cannot help but be captivated by the energy displayed by the Swedes on this their sixth release in their thirteen year career.
After recently parting ways with Lindberg, the band found themselves back together with their former vocalist Johan Lindstrand, who delivers a powerful and more importantly, memorable performance on "Possessed 13". Though my familiarity with THE CROWN's material prior to "Crowned In Terror" is limited, my appreciation for crushing, old-school Thrash Metal is not, which is exactly what you will be treated to on "Possessed 13". Unlike label-mates GOD DETHRONED, who fuse elements of Thrash into their brand of Death Metal, THE CROWN do the opposite here by fusing elements of Death into their overall sound. Look no further than the looming "Dawn Of Emptiness" for an illustration of the aforementioned. If speed be what you seek, I can assure you that there is plenty to be found over the course of this album's duration. However, I must single "Natashead Overdrive" as my personal favourite of the speed demons.
As for the instrumental work found on "Possessed 13", rest assured that it is of the highest quality. Excellent riff-work and memorable leads come together flawlessly with the pounding rhythm section to create a wall of sound that only a fool would consider penetrating. Add to this Lindstrand's menacing vocal attack and you are left with an album that perfectly demonstrates what it means to go back to the roots. So don't miss out on an album that will surely find it's way to the top of many reviewers' year end list, as a failure to due so may lead to bodily harm at the hands of THE CROWN. BOW TO NONE! (Online January 5, 2004)