Verbal Assault – Trial (Reissue) (Atomic Action! Records)

Like Scream and Uniform Choice, Verbal Assault were one of those bands who were way ahead of their time and Trial is a testament to just how progressive, forward thinking and inventive they were. Fusing the power, energy and anger of classic East Coast eighties Hardcore with melodic rock, Trial, their sophomore record, is bursting with the kind of sing-a-long anthems that in the decades that followed would become synonymous with Ignite and Avail. In fact, and I may well be going out a limb here, but I’d be willing to bet an evening’s bar tab that the aforementioned bands had well-worn copies of Trial and that it, and Verbal Assault, influenced the musical directions that they pursued. Atomic Action! have upped the ante with this remastered version of Trial as it sounds fantastic, and hopefully, at long last, Verbal Assault will get the recognition that they so richly deserve. Trial is Hardcore 101, so hit the scene books, get your studying hats on and get to class…  Tim Cundle

“Rap, Horrorcore, Hip hop, Hardcore” is how Verbal Assault describes their sound. If I had read that before I heard Trial I would never have bothered listening to the promo. As it is, I heard the album before I read their bio so all is good in the world. While my metal-snob ears don’t hear the rap or hip-hop influences I definitely hear the hardcore and it’s fucking great. It’s difficult to believe that there are enough people this angry in Maine to fill an entire roster but here it is and you’ll be forever lacking if you don’t give this one a chance. Its ferocious musical attack earns this band the “assault” in their name, which is a huge relief. It sucks to find a band with an angry name that actually plays wimpy music (Savage Garden…smh). These guys bring their A game and there are no disappointing songs to dread hearing upon each playback. If you’d like to truly enjoy your next thirty two minutes you’ll listen to Verbal Assault’s Trial right now. And again after that, and again, and again… Jim Dodge

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