Annihilator is a VERY underrated thrash metal band that has consistenly put out great albums since they appeared in the early 80’s. I really put them on a par with early Metallica and Megadeth as far as fast and furious riffing is concerned so you can’t go wrong with this 2 for the price of one pack that includes their classic first two albums. Alice In Hell is worth owning just for the title track alone, that has got to be one of the best metal songs ever written! It’s amazing how guitarist Jeff Waters crammed so many great riffs into that one song, a true classic. The rest of the album is fantastic as well with special mention to Human Insecticide which features one of the fastest displays of manic guitar shredding ever heard.Never, Neverland is the very worthy second album and shows what was to become one of Annihilators main problems – an ever changing lineup. The album itself doesn’t suffer from that since the songs are up to par with Alice In Hell with more wall to wall metal. And yes, this is the album with the infamous song Kraf Dinner, a song about macaroni and cheese, I kid you not. Both albums include bonus tracks in the form of unrealesed demos so you really do get a lot of bang for your buck.
Full Title – Alice In Hell / Never, Neverland. UK twofer combines the Canadian thrasher’s ground breaking 1989 & 1990 albums, features 25 tracks including 6 bonus tracks, ’Powerdrain’ (Demo), ’Schizos (Are Never Alone) Parts 1&2’ (Demo), ’Ligeia’ (Demo), ’Kraf Dinner’ (Demo), ’Mayhem’ (Demo of ’Reduced To Ash), & Freed From The Pit’ (Demo of ’Road To Ruin’). Roadrunner. 2003.
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How can people prefer Metallica, Megadeth or Slayer instead of Annihilator is something unclear to me and really makes me sad.How can’t the world value the talent of Jeff Waters?
Well, if you are into thrash metal or virtuosic guitars but done with originality and memorable riffs and awe inspiring and breathtaking changes in tempos, it doesn’t get better than Annihilator.Some may argue about Set The World On Fire being too much pop-metal oriented or that the voice of Jeff diminished the power in such gems as King Of The Kill or Remains (all albums post – Never, Neverland)but the intense glow with sheer perfection of this two first Annihilator jewel albums can not be touched!
The fact that Roadrunner gives this two to you, the elusive buying public, at the price of one album and remastered both of them plus bonus tracks is mind – blowing!
Highly Recommended! What are you waiting for? No, you don’t need to listen to samples! Just buy them.You will thank me.Trust me!
I got Alice in Hell and Never Neverland almost 17 years ago and they got lost somewhere when I moved back many years ago.
I was always more a fan of Never Neverland because I think the compositions and production are a level higher than Alice.
But for Alice. What a classic. There are some mad shredding riffs in there. As a guitarist, Waters has always been some kind of inspiration even today.
I think the vocals on Alice in Hell are more rough and draft than Never Neverland but that’s just me. Buy it even if it’s just for the songs Crystal Ann and Alice in Hell.
Excellent old school trash metal
The only problems I have with these two albums are the vocalists, who sometimes drive me nuts. ALso, the lyrics in a few parts are super cheesey (“Burns like a buzzsaw blade” and “Kraf Dinner.” I know “Kraf…” is supposed to be funny, but it just seems stupid.) because they rhyme too much.Jeff is a great guitar player, easily comparable to Dave Mustaine on “Rust In Peace.” In fact, certain parts of Never Neverland remind me of that album, especially the fast, technical picking and the crunchy riffs. Alice In Hell, I know is everyone’s favorite, but I find Never Neverland to be a step above.
With all the talk of 80’s thrash classics and arrows pointing to such illuminaries as Slayer, Megadeth, Metallica and others, there is one album that seemingly gets forgetten and may be one of the most enjoyable of all: Annihilator’s Alice In Hell. Though the album was purportedly recorded as a demo, the stellar guitar sound and absolute speed frenzy of Jeff Waters’ excellent guitar ability make this a fist pumping thrash dynamo. Nearly every song here is top notch, with highlights being “Alison Hell”, “Human Insecticide” (one of the fastest songs I can think of as the guitar retains such clarity in the accelerated playing), “Burns like a Buzz Saw Blade” and “W.T.Y.D.” Waters has an uncanny ability to create guitar rhythms that carry songs immensely well and also immediately give Annihilator a singular, unique sound. Sure, Randy Rampage (who lasted through this album and the tour afterwards) isn’t exactly what I would call a dynamic vocalist, but his sneering growls are perfect for the album. If, for some odd reason, you like thrash and don’t have this in your collection, you will most certainly join Alice.
Annihilator’s second album featuring new singer Coburn Pharr something of a dual headed dragon. The first half was absolutely top notch throughout while the second side nearly disemboweled itself on weak songs and joke tracks that would have been more at home on a Descendents record (“Kraf Dinner”). Though I just said that, I still catch myself smiling at its lyrics every once-in-a-while. Nevertheless, Never, Neverland featured remarkably stylish production from Glen Robinson and again showcased guitarist Jeff Waters’ sparkling ability. As songs like “The Fun Palace”, “Stonewall” and the title track all aptly demonstrate, his sense of rhythm and grand control over picking patterns should have placed him amongst the thrash elite of the time. For the songs that clicked, his style is simply phenomenal and even on the weaker songs, he still plays better than most. I think the biggest problem Never, Neverland (and perhaps Annihilator as a whole) suffered from was the lack of a true band feeling. Coburn Pharr is a capable singer and much more talented than his predecessor, Randy Rampage, but Rampage had a bigger presence overall. Pharr sounded more like the hired hand than a singer giving his heart and soul to the band. Yet, even with all its flaws, Never, Neverland is a great record that really deserved more attention than it ultimately received.
Both of these albums are gems in the thrash metal genre and we all can graciously thank Roadrunner records for re-releasing these tems together for the price of one.