HATCHERY, Birth of a Bomb (2007, self-released)

The skull:
This cover is the bomb! There, I said it. I like that another German band checks in
with a bomb/warhead theme so soon after U.D.O.’s Timebomb, Skull280. This is one of the finest entries we Friars and the Council have ever seen, a favorite in the Skullection. I don’t have to walk you through this one…you can see very clearly why it rules. I mean, a bomb with a warhead fashioned into a skull, a skull grinning in anticipation of
killing hundreds upon impact, maybe thousands if he’s lucky. A kamikaze mission, for sure. The huge right earhole is weird — perhaps it’s a matter of aerodynamics — and I like the thin robotic arm with a human hand putting on a final weld or two before this sucker drops on some unfortunate mass of humanity.

The music:
With an album cover this good, the music was bound to disappoint. Hatchery play super-aggressive, super-energetic thrash with a vocalist who yelps hysterically above the din. Not quite Sean Killian (Vio-lence) but probably equally divisive to thrash fans; there are also some similarities to the guy in Lich King (who, incidentally, have an album called Born of the Bomb). Maybe it’s like early Bobby Blitz (Overkill) trying to sing Last Man on Earth-era Martin Van Drunen (that specific enough for you?). But this guy, Christian Muller, is clearly his own man, and admittedly pretty nuts. I’d recommend checking this album out only to experience his vocals. Musically Hatchery are a totally competent band, with moments that set them a level or two higher from the new-thrash pack, like the “Wasted Years”-esque guitar work that opens “Brotherhood,” or the excellent soloing at the end of “Above the Law.” They’re also not afraid of Anthrax-style gang vocals, or showing influence from straightforward traditional heavy metal (parts of “War”). But, yet again (and again…and again…and again) there are no truly inventive riffs here, it’s all been beaten to death, buried, exhumed, and beaten to fucking death again. So, I’d recommend this if you have a limitless love for pretty much all thrash yet prefer the upper tier of the NWoTM (Havok, Lich King, Evile). I’m not even gonna list Vektor, as they’re above it all. Hatchery does, at least, have something of their own sound happening, but that’s largely due to the vocalist’s crazed delivery. BTW, the word “hatchery” must carry a special meaning for those in Germany and Eastern Europe, because the only two metal bands in existence using this word are from the region (the other being Poland’s Calm Hatchery). There’s aren’t many words that are less metal than “hatchery.” Makes me think of tiny yellow chicks, or fish.
— Friar Wagner