Various Artists – Contract In Blood: A History of UK Thrash Metal boxset

This is a superb collection of music to provide the soundtrack to Ian Glasper’s fine book of the same name which I feel is one of the best music books ever written – Contract In Blood: A History of UK Thrash Metal. This is a most comprehensive selection of music with no less than 83 tracks across five CDs, with a really decent booklet, and it really shows the extent and longevity of the UK thrash scene. It is pleasing to note the newer bands that feature alongside cult heroes.

If I had to pick out a favourite CD it would be Disc One: The Northeast, as it features Venom, Evile, Re-Animator, Slammer, Atomkraft and Toranaga.

Disc Two: The North-West and The Midlands features two of the greatest British metal bands in any genre: Sacrilege and Sabbat. Pleasingly it also features an obscure track from Xyster aA xyster is a surgical instrument used for scraping bone).

Disc Three: The East and The South features tracks from English Dogs, Kemakil, Hellbastard and Cerebral Scar.

Disc Four: The South-East and The South West has highlights like Savage Messiah and Obliteration.

Disc Five: covers Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland. Highlights include Gama Bomb and the splendidly named Thrashist Regime!

Easily the best thrash compilation of all time, and the perfect companion to Ian Glasper’s suburb book.

Buy of F.O.A.D., as those great Shades Records adverts used to say!

(Cherry Red Records)

Contract In Blood: A History Of UK Thrash Metal, Various Artists, 5CD BoxsetVarious Artists

Further reading:

Review of Contract In Blood book by Steve Earles

Review of Contract In Blood book by Craig Hayes

Steve Earles is author and co-author of numerous projects, including To End All Wars: The WWI Graphic Anthology, available summer 2014 (