“Only the Dead Know the End of War” LP
Speaking of my three-week Bolt Thrower binge, this Hellshock LP came at the perfect time. They have twin-guitar harmonies that are brutal and foreboding, just like Bolt Thrower. They have march-into-battle riffs and guttural vocals, just like Bolt Thrower. They have lots of songs about war, just like Bolt Thrower. They have probably been spotted wearing CRASS and Discharge shirts, just like Bolt Thrower. Bolt Thrower emerged from the mid-1980s peace-punk scene in Great Britain; Hellshock only sounds like they did. You don’t even have to guess what bands Hellshock loves, but they still have a sound of their own that tells you they’re from Portland, Ore. The album art is also excellent, featuring a detailed drawing of a dead soldier, a gas mask and a vulture. Still, Only the Dead Know the End of War sounds very metal for a punk record, but if you walk with the goat lord, you will understand. (Hellshock/P.O. Box 2626/Portland, OR/97208)
This review originally appeared in Wasted Life, August 2004, Issue 188.