Great Metal Albums of 1986: Kreator- Pleasure to Kill

When I introduced 1986 way back when, I stated that this was the year heavy metal began to noticeably fragment into sub-genres, most notably, glam and thrash. Others would follow further down the line. If I could point to one album which concreted this fragmentation, it’s German thrash band Kreator’s second album, “Pleasure to Kill.” When I played the album to friends, all the thrash oriented friends called it “pure thrash,” which it is. However, a couple of my more glam and mainstream metal friends weren’t too impressed with it. One of them called the album, “Music to kill your grandmother to.”

Being one who likes to visit all the metal camps, I loved the album for what it was, pure unadulterated thrash. The ferocity and speed of which the songs are played were mind-blowing when I first heard it in 1986 and I still fully appreciate its raw power these days. While I might state that my musical tastes have gone slightly more melodic in my old age, I still love the power of albums such as “Pleasure to Kill.” The song titles are amusing too.

The biggest highlight for me of Download 2018 was to see Kreator play the title cut live. “Pleasure to Kill” could possibly be one of my all time favourite thrash metal songs and it’s definitely up there with my favourite songs of all time. I love the fact that even though the song sets out to beat your brains in, it has a cool tempo change in the middle, which the band does effortlessly. Even though Mille Petrozza has since demoted himself to rhythm guitar, he does shred this song outstandingly. Then again, he shreds on every song, his best effort being on the closer, “Under the Guillotine.”

With all my years of listening to “Pleasure to Kill,” I find it hard to pick a hidden gem. While the title track is the best known song from the album, nothing can be taken from the other tracks. Tracks such as “Ripping Corpse,” “Command of the Blade” and “Death Is Your Saviour” lead the charge in what makes this one of the best thrash albums not made by one of the Big 4.

In finally choosing a hidden gem for the album, I took into account that while Mille is the principal lead singer on the album, drummer Ventor, sings lead on three songs. Of those, I think that “Command of the Blade,” is the best, so it gets my vote for hidden gem. That brings me to dispel another misconception about the album. Some of those who aren’t into thrash claim that you can’t tell the difference between Mille’s vocals and Ventor’s. I always could tell it.

Track Listing:

  1. Choir of the Damned
  2. Ripping Corpse
  3. Death Is Your Saviour
  4. Pleasure to Kill
  5. Riot of Violence
  6. Pestilence
  7. Carrion
  8. Command of the Blade
  9. Under the Guillotine

Mille Petrozza- guitar, vocals

Rob Fioretti- bass

Ventor- drums, vocals on tracks 3, 5 &8

Michael Wulf has been accredited for being on the album, he wasn’t, as Mille plays all the guitars. Wulf was eventually let go because, according to Mille, he wouldn’t learn the songs.

Another positive from 1986 is that metalheads in North America and the UK realized that there were some great metal bands in Germany, other than The Scorpions and Accept. Kreator, along with the likes of Warlock and Helloween, spearheaded this. In Kreator’s case, having such a great album like “Pleasure to Kill,” it’s obvious why. Finally, after the hundreds and hundreds of times I’ve listened to the album, I have never had any desire to kill my grandmother.

Next post: Yngwie Malmsteen- Trilogy

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6 Responses to “Great Metal Albums of 1986: Kreator- Pleasure to Kill”

  1. I was at that same Kreator 2018 set! Ha, we mustve been pretty close to eachother and not known

    Liked by 2 people

  2. This album gets regular spins round at my place!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Brings back happy memories of the nice gentleman and his wife who owned our local musical instrument and vinyl record shop, and who were always happy to play us albums in the shop before we purchased them. Kreator at full blast didn’t seem to phase them, but some of the customers who were only in to buy classical guitar strings and piano sheet music looked absolutely terrified.

    Liked by 2 people

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