The band on stage is named Supremate. They hails from Finalnd and is basically formed around the brothers Teemu (vocals, guitars and drums). When they formed in 1999, they were a coverband, playing songs from Nirvana, The Offspring, Pantera and Metallica. Gradually they started writing their own material and recorded a number of e.p.'s. Metallica clearly stuck with the band, audible in both vocals and breaks. On several occasions they actually do better than James and co. do themselves these days.
That's also the first thing that comes to mind when you listen to this album for the first time. While 'Lethal Zephyr' opens quite similar to Sepultura's 'Chaos A.D.' album, quickly the Metallica influences coming shining through. Megadeth and Anthrax are also near and in some way it might seem that Supremate is a nineties metal clone without an own identity. Yet, and that's why I added 'for the first time', gradually that identity starts materializing itself.
It quickly comes clear that 'Lethal Zephyr' is the radio-friendly opener. Right after 'Turn A Blind Eye' drags us way back into the nineties thrash metal scene, while also borrowing elements from melodic death metal from bands like In Flames, or Gothenburg-metal as it was named in those days. 'The Serpent Of Time' drives on some great old school thrash riffs and quite a complicated playfulness. Headbanging is quite possible though and I'm sure a lot of old schoolers will appreciate this.
Supremate has potential, that's for sure but in a way I feel like that own identity still has to grow a bit. Or course, this is only the debut full-length, showing an evolving band. But I'm constantly thrown between the huge bands I named earlier in this review. 'Strike From Below' smells like Anthrax. 'The Burden' has a lot of Megadeth strangeness and so on. I'm not sure how the average metalhead will react to this, probably a bit confused.
That being said: don't think that this is a bad album, on the contrary. It's an excellent metal album, loaded with brilliant guitar riffs and a tremendous variation in drums. 'Walk Through The Wall' for example is a massive song, honoring the nineties scene and definitely going into the direction I'd like to see Supremate evolving into: complex metal with some freak-out passages and blistering guitars. Or how about vintage hard rocker 'Temporary Freedom', a surprisingly nice throwback into the eighties.
What this band needs now, is professional attention, a label and an experienced producer. If they can find these, I'm positive they will be a lot higher on that festival line-up next year. This music has the potention to be a blast live, so their on stage performances will certainly help them getting ahead in the game. In short: Supremate is a band to keep an eye out for. There's plenty of talent, skills and experiences present and it's waiting to break free.