When Mangler formed in February 2016 in Ottawa, Canada, they had absolutely no intention to write some touchy-feely ballads. Straight forward thrashing death is what they were aiming for! The band is formed by drummer Tyson Seery and guitarist and vocalist Jonathan Lozo. In October of the same year bassist Dan Hurtubise joined, and with that the line-up was complete. Their first single was released on June 16th 2017, containing two tracks. Dimensions of Terror was recorded at Apartment 2 Recordings and released on limited edition cassette and digitally. Because the demand was growing, Raw Skull Recordz decided that it was time to bring Dimensions of Terror into the world on CD. Besides that, they also added a bonus track, called Shit for Brains.
Mangler is a band that is not afraid to show where they are coming from. Aggressive, raw and old school Canadian metal it is. I would say they took some inspiration from Morbid Saint, Onslaught, Sacrifice and other bands in the death/thrash spectrum. While they are maybe not the most original band out there, they sure know how to handle the old school vibe.
The first on the album is Switchblade Homicide. And it is one hell of a track. They leave you with no time to get used to their sound and smack you right in the face with it. It has a groovy element, which makes the song catchy in a good way. A crude voice, distorted guitars and some filthy lyrics. Basically how it should be done in this genre.
The album continues with Satan’s Regulator, which starts with a somewhat slower riff work. What you can hear clearly is Bassist Dan Hurtubise, with some thundering sounds peaking through. It is definitely one of the songs with a more groovier and slower pace on the album. Nonetheless, it is a very decent song.
You can both find the next two tracks, Heavy Metal Wolves and the title track Dimensions of Terror, on their single also. In my opinion the songs do not really sound like they are from this time. The influences from the old school are clearly hearable, and used in a satisfactory way. In fact, if I would not know any better, and somebody would tell me that it was made in, let‘s say 1988, I would probably believe it. Dimensions of Terror starts with a superb little drum intro, which fits perfectly with the rest of the song. This one is on the faster side, and has a thrash feel to it.
Last Great Warrior King is the eighth and last song on the original release. The sound with this one leans more towards the heavy metal side as a result of the guitar work. Perhaps due to the usage of less chords, for instance in the intro and chorus. In addition to that, there is also some duo guitar playing going on later in the song, which fuels the heavy metal sound even more. It sure is not a bad thing, if anything, it adds a little variation in the album, which is not hurting anybody.
Mangler does not come to play, they do it hard and heavy. Therefore I recommend it for fans of old school metal. I think it was a good move to release the album on CD too, especially if the fan base is growing. In addition to the new CD release, they also added a bonus track.
Release date: August 1st, 2018
Label: Raw Skull Recordz
1. Switchblade Homicide
2. Satan‘s Regulator
3. Heavy Metal Wolves
4. Dimensions of Terror
5. Thine Axe Cleaves
6. Hell‘s Horsemen
7. Satanic Panic
8. Last Great Warrior King
9. Shit for Brains