• Steve Jenkins

Slime And Punishment - Municipal Waste


Artist: Municipal Waste

Album: Slime And Punishment

Genre: Crossover Thrash Metal

Review by Steve Jenkins

There's not a whole lot of new territory for crossover to explore, given not only that it tends to focus on a limited set of subjects, but because it's been around for about 30 years now. But you have to hand it to Municipal Waste, for despite sounding like a very basic hybrid of primitive hardcore influenced nastiness via Discharge and the usual thrashing goodness with a punk edge in D.R.I. and Cro-Mags, they've stumbled upon something that is actually fairly unique in their limited field. Granted, science fiction and horror have been a fairly compatible couple for quite some time in the film industry, but there hasn't been a whole lot of exploration of the sort of cannibalistic zombies reaping havoc on a space station subjects in the crossover world, unless one wishes to count the eclectic musical satirists Gwar among the group. Slime And Punishment proves to be a pretty typical affair for those who have experienced their brand of sound on their previous studio efforts. The new ground that is broken here comes in even smaller doses than the 1-3 minute standard songs that come in groups of 14 or more, culminating in 2 brief tracks, one of them the opener 'Breathe Grease' and the intoxicating and headbang inducing 'Shrednecks'. These two tracks sound like an over-simplified Slayer song, yet leaving their mark by incorporating an interesting and refreshing twist on a common place crossover approach. Being their sixth studio album. Slime And Punishment is not that much of a far cry from the band's established reputation for quick wit and morbid humor, as plenty of these songs are both lyrically and musically consistent with the fun heard on the 2007 party-thrash masterpiece, The Art Of Partying. Their are tracks on here that somewhat more thrashers will appreciate, which can be separated simply by observing whether the song crosses the 2 minute threshold or not, but every song always ends up in d-beat heaven for at least 65% of the time. 'Bourbon Discipline' and 'Excessive Celebration stand out for both being the most recognizably typical of the band's fascination with intoxication and their distilled feel of chaos and rage. While the formula never really gets beyond a couple of quick riffs and a couple of different drum beats, few and fleeting guitar solos and a one-dimensional vocal approach, it all works quite effectively. Listen to the track 'Low Tolerance' and tell me you don't want to jump into a moshpit and go absolutely apeshit. It might be a weird sentiment, but this album showcases Municipal Waste doing something that most might think impossible, namely traveling without really moving all that much. The exterior and a few moments on here mark a very clear departure, but 90% of this album can not be qualified as anything other than typical. Loving every single album that this band has put out is quite easy, as is hating every single one if they're not within one's preferred style, but seeing some sort of extreme rise and fall in quality for this band is something that is pretty difficult to argue in favour of consistency. They may be the unofficial kings of the crossover/thrash revival, but for those who want to have some fun while throwing their neck out whilst smashing down cans of cheap beer, it doesn't get much better than this.

8.5 out of 10 stars.

Slime And Punishment is out June 23rd via Nuclear Blast Records.

Watch the official video for the track 'Amateur Sketch' below:


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