Picture of Intruder

Live to Die

Intruder - Live To Die ©1987 Iron Works
1. Cover Up
2. Turn Back
3. Victory in Disguise
4. Live to Die
5. Kiss of Death
6. Cold-Blooded Killer
7. Blind Rage
8. T.M. (You Paid the Price)

Amongst all the also-rans of 80s thrash and speed metal are the members of Intruder, a Nashville based outfit who toiled away for a few years before issuing a couple albums on Metal Blade, then vanishing as thrash became about as cool as a case of herpes. Their first release was on a tiny independent label and surprisingly well recorded. Perhaps being in the home of country music meant good studios were easier to come by. Live to Die, if nothing else, stands alongside some of the better sounding releases of 1987.

Live to Die is a fairly decent debut through and through. While it most certainly displays most every expected stylistic decoration of speed/thrash metal, it strikes me as a record that would have had heavy playtime had I heard it in 1987 or 1988. The band sounded polished, as though they had played together for awhile before recording these songs. Singer Jimmy Hamilton had a melodic approach somewhat like the fellow from Lz Rockit, which occasionally resulted in a great hook, such as the album opener "Cover Up". Though the album contains some duds ("Cold-Blooded Killer" is the type of song that makes you feel like you just switched from a nice Jaguar to a Mazda mid-commute) and the songs often last about a minute too long, Live to Die is very listenable. It probably could go without blatantly stating it that it's hardly a mandatory find for the average metal fan, but for those seeking to round out their obsession with obscure 80s thrash metal, this one is worth tracking down.

Review by John Chedsey

Review date: 10/2010

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