In the shadow of the big German Thrash bands born in the mid 80s, the Swiss CORONER always managed to hail from the underground with an extraordinary, direct, technical and straight-to-vein Thrash of the finest class, mixing a corrosive atmosphere with a violent attitude with which they took a place among the elite.
Their second album was “Punishment For Decadence” and respecting the identity created with their praised debut “R.I.P.”, the band offers us a sophisticated, ultra-fast and yet melodic Thrash Metal jewel. The strings work is just out of this world, with a talented guitarist that is able to punch with awesome riffs and to play a free-style game that gives the song-structure an incredibly complex shape (believe me, Tommy Baron is a reason by himself to get into this band). On the other hand, a really heavy bass will be constantly revolving your stomach with fury and the drums play an original, aggressive role, although I would like them to sound a bit louder to form a more consistent skeleton for the music. By their side, vocals are truly well done, with a lot of force and ripping texture and without doubt among the highlights of the brilliant musical personality of the band.
My main complaint about “Punishment For Decadence” is its more than poor production. Sometimes I can overlook that problem in Thrash as rawness and dirty sound can be something good by itself in some bands, but this is surely not the case. A group with the complexity, extraordinary guitars and uncommonly rich musical structure displayed by CORONER deserves a much better sound, at least to make more recognizable instrumental details, because in this tangled and confusing sound I can feel that there’s just too much geniality lost.
I just don’t see any reason for any Thrash fan for not to buy this album. It is heavier than hell, fast, well played, unique… just anything good you could expect from this genre. It is still not the best by CORONER as they demonstrated with “No More Color” that they could even go beyond this, but “Punishment For Decadence” just shouldn’t be missing in any serious extreme Metal collection. (Online January 20, 2006)