|Classic Review: Forbidden - Forbidden Evil|
Label: Century Media
Year released: 1988
Genre: Thrash Metal
Review online: September 3, 2003
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Rated 4.35/5 (87.03%) (37 Votes)
Gone but not forgotten, this is the first release from this legendary Bay Area band from the days of yore. Forbidden came up from the bottom, building a rep as an incredible live act (to which I can personally attest) and finally getting a deal with Combat records to put their high-energy power/thrash on a proper disc. Though the marriage with Combat was ill-fated, this album still shines.
"Forbidden Evil" shows off a young band in their prime, still full of fight and unfettered by expectations or the label problems that would plague them the rest of their career. Most of the album is pretty standard thrash, albeit with a hellbent fury foreign to most of the San Fran wannabe bands, but on three tracks: the title cut, "Follow Me" and the explosive "Through Eyes of Glass" Forbidden combined their thrash attack with a power-metal riff and vocal sensibility to create an electrifying hybrid sound which they completely failed to capitalize on in future albums. Tracks like "Chalice of Blood" and "As Good As Dead" are energetic and furious, but they do not make the best use of vocalist Russ Anderson. When he tried to snarl and shout he sounded OK, but the man was born to sing, and when they let him loose he compared with the very best metal singers of his day. Again I have to single out "Through Eyes of Glass" as a first-rate song that I'm surprised no one has ever covered, as it just rules and is worth the price of the CD all by itself. A song worthy of the Priest in their glory days.
Forbidden never got the props they deserved, but then they never released an album that lived up to their potential either. The follow-up "Twisted Into Form" was a solid but uninspired effort, and the two succeeding albums veered off into Pantera-esque agro-grind and were even more generic. But this album still stands as a classic of the Bay-Area sound, and it belongs in every thrash fan's CD rack.
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Review: Twisted Into Form (reviewed by Christopher Foley)
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Video: Omega Wave
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