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All Out War – Truth In The Age Of Lies

All Out War – Truth In The Age Of Lies

This was originally planned as a flashback to the 15 year anniversary of the album. But sadly enough, like many plans that we come up with, this one full through for some reason. David (Hardcopy, former head honcho) found his review the other day and asked if we still needed it. It’s never too late, is it?

I remember exactly how I was first exposed to the first All Out War album in 1997. I saw an ad in a zine. I think it was The Dark Breed, a Belgian zine that focused mostly on heavy NYHC and beatdown/metalcore. At the time I didn’t pay much attention to it, but then I saw the CD at the distro that Dave Reumers from Right Direction did. He was standing behind the merch table at a hardcore festival at Noorderligt, Tilburg (RIP) together with Richie Backfire (RIP). Now that I saw the CD again, I became curious. So I asked Dave what it sounded like. He said only one word: “Slayer”. This should have caused me to buy the album, because I like Slayer. But at the time I was really, really into old school hardcore and nothing else. So I bought ‘Just One’ by Better Than A Thousand instead.

The funny thing is that I picked up two other modern hardcore classics from 1997 that night: ‘Satisfaction Is The Death Of Desire’ by Hatebreed and ‘Spit My Last Breath’ by Blood For Blood. It was a sign that I was ready for some heavier stuff than just old school hardcore. So when Victory Records signed All Out War and released their second album ‘For Those Who Were Crucified’ in 1998, I decided to check this band out. I was blown away by the power and the massive sound that they had. The three albums that followed in the new millennium were also good stuff. Still I didn’t buy the first All Out War album until our well-known hardcore hooligan John Rhoon found a box of them underneath his bed and sold them through I figured that it was a nice way to complete the All Out War CD-collection. I didn’t expect much of it, since three of the songs were also on ‘For Those Who Were Crucified’, so I already knew them, but the atmosphere is totally different.

Listening back now, it seems the second album is almost over-produced compared to the first one. ‘Truth In The Age Of Lies’ is a raw statement. It is a monumental display of an upcoming genre. Although the term ‘metalcore’ has a different ring to it 15 years later, THIS is what it originally sounded like. Together with bands like Merauder and Hatebreed, All Out War invented this brutal crossover between hardcore and metal. Sure, crossover was nothing new (think Cro-Mags and D.R.I.), but this style was different. It depended on breakdowns and the collaboration between heavy drums and heavy riffs. It’s the style that I still love 15 years later. Although I must admit that I’m one of those people that likes the record best that he hears first. In my case, if I want to listen to some All Out War, it means that I reach for ‘For Those Who Were Crucified’. But I still see ‘Truth In The Age Of Lies’ as a true classic.

85% means 4 ice flakes, Asice style.

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