Axegrinder @ Rise of the Serpent Men Review

Rise of the Serpent Men
Peaceville Records

It seems that Axegrinder has been caught-up in the web of Peaceville’s re-releases with this uncluttered digipack presentation of their album of old.
Originally released in 1989, Rise of the Serpent Men is a fusion of some of Punk’s openness and primeval edge with Doom Metal’s more mid-paced and dirge-like moments, without eclipsing its grinding muscle as well. And by reading their promotional sheet, I see that much like their peers in Metallica throughout the eighties, Axegrinder managed to attract listeners from both Punk and Metal contingents (even if in a smaller scale).
Formed exactly twenty years ago by three former members of Stone The Crowz, Axegrinder were primarily known as Tyrants of Hate. They played their first set of shows in the autumn of the same year and went on to record their fist (and only) demo entitled Grind the Enemy. Supposedly, the sound attracted Hammy at Peaceville, who not only got them signed to his growing label at the time, but also allowed them an appearance on the now legendary A Vile Peace sampler. Finally, the band was now able to enter the Lion Studios in Leeds, back in 1988, to record their first album, Rise of the Serpent Men. Initially issued on a split-release with Prophecy of Doom, the record turned-up to be the band’s debut, as well as its swan song, due to the fact that two years later the band split-up. After its closure, members Trev, Steve and Darryn joined forces to form Wartech, which had a more Voivod-based sound to it. And since the band never managed to breakout from their demo days, Peaceville decided to track those songs down and add them as bonus-tracks to this new release.
Possibly hard to swallow for newcomers and followers of the more harmonious side of Peaceville’s catalogue, Axegrinder’s material might be an interesting pick for those seduced by old-school sounds, as well as those tired of nowadays purported “extreme” affinities.

Peaceville Records


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