Get ready for war with this rising and upfront Canadian Thrash Metal army.
Named after Russell Crowe`s iconic character Maximus Decimus Meridius from the Academy Award-winning epic movie Gladiator, Canadian Thrash/Groove Metal band Meridius is here to provide us headbangers a short and extremely energetic Thrash Metal assault with their debut self-titled EP, Meridius, which will please all fans of veterans the likes of Slayer, Exodus and Pantera. And just like General Maximus, this five-piece army won’t stop until the last body drops to the sound of their cutthroat music.
Hailing from Vancouver, British Columbia and singing about inevitable (but always fresh) topics such as death, torture, war and violence, Meridius are not aiming at revolutionizing Thrash Metal. What those guys really want is pretty simple and straightforward: to entertain all thrash metallers in the world with huge doses of dark humor and high-quality music, and let me tell you that based on what is available in Meridius they have more than what it takes to succeed. Who doesn’t enjoy some honest and violent Thrash Metal, eh!?
The first track in Meridius is also my favorite one, Speed Kills, where the 100% Slayer-ish riffs by guitarists Kieran Marquis and Sam Buchanan support the song’s dense and heavy musicality. It’s ruthless music with lots of groove, sounding like a “tribute” to contemporary North American Thrash Metal, especially the vocals by frontman Eric Willmott which are more aggressive and modern than usual just like what Randy Blythe (Lamb of God) and Rob Dukes (Exodus, Generation Kill) usually do. Moreover, when the song reaches its guitar solo, it gets closer to the music by Pantera, which is always a good thing.
Conquer The Throne, with its riffs and drums inspired by Swedish Melodic Death Metal and Speed Metal, is another aggressive metal attack with more melodic vocals, showcasing lyrics as violent as the music and a very catchy chorus, followed by the third and last track of the EP, Walk The Plank, which goes back to the musicality of Bay Area Thrash. The song is not at the speed of light, but it’s very groovy and truly heavy with the addition of even some clean vocals. The neck-breaking riff in the middle of the song is perfect for lovers of slow but gigantic headbanging, and the second half of it is an exhibit of the Heavy Metal skills of all band members, with a melancholic acoustic ending that was probably put there on purpose for the listener to slow down after so much violence.
It’s particularly important to acknowledge the high-end production of the entire EP, and if the band’s first full-length album, which is already being crafted and should be available in the next few months, sounds as professional as any of the three tracks from the EP, diehard thrash metallers from any nationality will soon turn their eyes and ears to Canada without a shadow of a doubt. While Meridius are writing new material and getting ready to tour Canada, go check their music at their official BandCamp page and also on SoundCloud, and get ready for war with this 101 proof Canadian Thrash Metal band.
Best moments of the album: Speed Kills.
Worst moments of the album: None.
Released in 2015 Independent
1. Speed Kills 3:42
2. Conquer The Throne 4:17
3. Walk The Plank 5:27
Eric Willmott – vocals
Kieran Marquis – lead guitar
Sam Buchanan – rhythm guitar
Peter Reimann – bass guitar
Nolan Olson – drums