Testament has been a band I only discovered recently the past few years and have been a great addition to my metal regiment (Metallica, Slayer, Pantera, Megadeth, Sepultura, etc..) The Gathering is another amazing addition to the already fantastic discography that Testament has accumalated over the past years. With the Gathering, Testament displays their raw metal force seen in Demonic with a return to a more progressively thrashy sound. D.N.R rips this album open in a fury of fast metal riffs that set the stage for what the Gathering is going to be, with intense drumming thanks to former Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo, beautiful crafted metal riffs by veteran Eric Peterson, great guitar work by James Murphy, and the usual power-wrenching vocals of Chuck Billy. Billy has returned to his older style of singing, with less of the death metal style seen in Demonic. The whole album screams “no-holds-barred-metal-in-your-face” with tracks like Eyes of Wrath, Legions of the Dead, and Riding the Snake, which are committed to showing the world that no one rocks harder than Testament.
If you enjoyed Low and Demonic, than this a welcome addition to the Testament sound with an album that is every bit an evolution of the powerful thrash metal. And if you are like me and enjoyed the Skolnick-era of Testament (i.e. The Legacy, The New Order, Practice What You Preach, Souls of Black, and The Ritual), you will be pleased to see that, even though the leads are not as commanding as the earlier years, Testament is still one of the greatest bands of metal, crafting an aggressive and powerful metal sound like no other.