Greetings and welcome to Thrashy Throwback Thursday. Anybody who is familiar with the big 4 of thrash metal is probably also familiar with the history between Dave Mustaine and Metallica, leading ultimately to the formation of Megadeth. Well a similar scenario happened on the east coast a couple years later. In 1984, bassist Danny Lilker was kicked out of Anthrax, and like Mustaine, went on to form another band: Nuclear Assault.
So how would one describe the overall sound of Nuclear Assault? True and honest thrash metal. Nuclear Assault is very fast, aggressive, and they get straight to the point (like an east coast version of Slayer). They have a very strong hardcore punk influence in their sound, with very few songs exceeding the 4 minute mark.
Some things that make Nuclear Assault stand out from their thrash metal contemporaries are John Connelly’s unique high-pitched screeching vocals, as well as Lilker’s driving bass tone which seems to bleed through every song perfectly and provide that necessary low end. Some of the songs on their earlier albums have even bordered on grindcore territory, showing Lilker’s interest in the style and possibly even foreshadowing his future participation in Brutal Truth. Nuclear Assault may not have been the most popular nor have the most mainstream success, but they are a true example of well executed thrash metal.
All thrash metal, hardcore, and heavy music enthusiasts should check out “Game Over” (1986) and “Survive” (1988).