Flotsam & Jetsam – The Cold

This is a review I should have written awhile ago and for whatever reason I never did. I’ve got some extra time and inspiration today so let’s do this. Flotsam & Jetsam and I go way back. Way back. I would have to guess 1986? I remember I first heard them on the once a week metal radio show Metal Shop. Every week they would play…I wanna say they called it Fresh Metal? This was always my favorite part of the show because they would play something new, generally from a band I hadn’t heard before. This was a time when I was devouring all the new metal I could find and the sources for metal information were somewhat scarce. Anyway, they played “Hammerhead” from their debut “Doomsday for the Deceiver” and I thought they were pretty cool. I picked up the album on LP shortly after. Not long after that their bass player, a Mr. Jason Newsted, departed to join a little band called Metallica. The band replaced Jason and continued to release albums. First there was “No Place for Disgrace” which I thought was even better than “Doomsday” and included a cover of Elton John’s “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting”. After that came my all time favorite F&J album “When the Storm Comes Down”. I’ve heard people say that was their worst album; I have to think those people are crazy. It’s a classic in my book. In the early 90s they released their fourth album “Cuatro” and while “Wading Through the Darkness” was a good track, they started losing me. I don’t know if it was my tastes changing or their style, but I just wasn’t as interested in them after that album. I still dug the first three albums, but whenever they put out new material after that I only gave it a brief listen before deciding I didn’t really like it.

Fast forward a bunch of years and F&J are set to release their latest album “The Cold”. I hadn’t heard much about them for awhile and some of the other 80s thrash bands were making comebacks so I decided to check it out. Also the album cover looked cool, and I’m still susceptible to checking out music because the cover is cool. So when it was released I jumped on iTunes and bought it straight away. I was hoping maybe this would be some sort of rebirth for them and ended up so happy to realize that I freaking loved it.

“The Cold” sounds like F&J of old to me, but it sounds contemporary too, it doesn’t have a dated sound. Eric has a very distinct voice and this album is a great showcase for it. “Blackened Eyes Staring” is a good example of his vocal gymnastics. The music is perfect; well done thrash with melodic leads to complement the vocals. Some are more angry and heavy than others but I feel they are all good solid songs. Once I got my hands on this it was all I would listen to for days on end.

So I would like to ask all of you to go to iTunes and buy this album. Because I really want you to help me bring Flotsam & Jetsam back to their former glory. These guys deserve a comeback and I would very much like to see them put out another killer album after this one. So if you like metal, get this album, whether it’s here or at your local store or wherever. I normally wouldn’t pimp a release so hard so you know I must really like it. Support this album.