The Accused A.D. – Ghoul in the Mirror (Blackhouse Records)

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It wasn’t D.R.I. , Suicidal Tendencies or Nuclear Assault who introduced me to Crossover. No sir, I became hopelessly hooked on the mainline to Thrashville and Hardcore Town thanks to a band from Seattle who I’d never even heard of before Tommy Vance played a song called Take My Time on the Friday Rock Show.  The song was a whirlwind of frenzied, Discharge on steroids riffing, lightning fast drumming and howled, sub-guttural, screeching vocals that turned my brain inside out and pounded it into mush. I played that song, having had the foresight to record the show on a crappy over-used and worn cassette, over and over again. I’d never heard anything like it before, and on a cold, dark night in 1986 I fell in love with a scene whose name I didn’t even know and my life was never the same again. And it was all thanks to a band from Seattle I’d never even heard of. The Accused ruined my life and for doing that, I’ll be eternally grateful to them.

Fast forward thirty three years and while there isn’t a week that goes by when I don’t listen to at least one of their albums, The Accused, for all intents and purposes and because of the interchangeable whims of one ex-member, don’t exist anymore. Which would be a crying shame were it not for The Accused A.D., a band comprised of the creative force and nucleus of Seattle’s finest wrecking crew. The Accused AD have picked up the Crossover baton that their former band dropped, added a whole extra dose of balls out, heavy as hell rock’n’roll to the sound they helped to create and have delivered an album that charges out of the gate like a raging bull with veins full of meth-amphetamine and twenty hard cranking, high powered car batteries shoved up its arse. Ghoul in the Mirror is everything that you’d expect, and hope that, a record from a band bearing this moniker would be. It’s fast, it’s drag-ass heavy, the vocals peel paint off walls and make old ladies drop dead at twenty paces and it rattles and grinds your bones until you feel like you’re about to fall to pieces. A glorious cacophony of some of the finest crossover that you’ll ever hear this side of the millennium, Ghoul is musical destruction writ large that while featuring a cover of Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo that makes Rick Derringer’s original sound like an amateur nursery school song, also plays host to twelve other tunes that remind you just why these guys were, and still are, the very best at what they do.  It’s thrashing time…  Tim Cundle

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