Agent Orange by Sodom is one of those must-have thrash metal albums that you'll always find in countdowns and lists of top 100 metal albums and top 20 thrash albums etc alongside the likes of Beneath The Remains, Extreme Aggression and Forbidden Evil.
Released in 1989, the German thrash band's third full length album was a breakthrough moment that raised their profile, shifted a lot of units and earned the band a lasting respect. Earlier Sodom albums and EPs had been very noisy, harsh and extreme and became very influential for black and death metal artists much like the earliest Sepultura and Kreator records.
Agent Orange found the band unleashing their full potential as songwriters and as musicians, song lengths extended, acoustic sections got introduced, guitar solos came more frequently and more impressively, structures got more complex and the album as a whole just has a grand and important feel like all the very best thrash albums do. All of this happened in conjunction with a notably better production job resulting in a stunning album all around.
Another thing in its favour is that Agent Orange isn't all just mindless thumping, and intense speeds with no respite. The band make the faster sections good by use of contrast; Sodom play a mixture of tempos here, using chugging sections and even occasional grooves and sudden tempo shifts to brake up the monotony, making for a very strong listen that doesn't get old on repeat listens.
Standout tracks include the amazing title track 'Agent Orange,' as well as the slower 'Remember The Fallen,' and the furious 'Tired And Red.'
Sometimes you will read that Agent Orange is a bad album, but that is almost always from the perspective of people who prefer really extreme music, raw production and the like. If you aren't just an elitist and are a fan of well composed and interesting thrash metal trust that Argent Orange deserves its reputation on all those top metal album countdowns and lives up to the hype.
In summary; If you are a fan of thrash metal I would strongly recommend this album, doubly so if you like late eighties work of Kreator, Destruction or Sepultura. If you are a fan of Sodom already you absolutely must check it out.
This music changed my life back in 1989. This was the revolutionary album that put european thrash on top of the world. It's my favorite one together with MASTER OF PUPPETS, SO FAR SO GOOD SO WHAT and RUST IN PEACE, REIGN IN BLOOD, BENEATH THE REMAINS, EXTREME AGGRESSION etc. I have had original (Made in West Germany) cd, now I have this double LP. If you wanna be happy like me buy it!!!
For Tom Angelripper's Sodom- being the only constant member since the early days, this is undoubtedly his' and the bands finest moment and the best Sodom cannon ever!. For thrash metal fans it simply does not get any better than this:- from key tracks like "Agent Orange, Incest, Magic Dragon to Exhibition bout" it is a manic and disturbing affair which goes straight for the neck. Ridiculously fast pace match a heavy emphasis on solos and a variety of destructive riffs. A crisp and decent enough production job is then enough to seal this effort as one of the best ever.
Later great efforts like "Tapping the vein and M-16" were in the similar mold as Agent Orange but never quite as good. The work across the board on Agent Orange is truly five star stuff. Ever since I got myself a copy of the CD I've become an avid follower of these great German masters; and regularly return to it when the need arises. The full anguish and horror of the Vietnam war is very well reflected in this brutal ritual of extreme thrash metal, and I would most definately highly recommend this album as the first port-of-call to fans looking to get into the band or the sub-genre.
It is hard to think of a thrash metal album better done than this. All of the ingredients are there: it is fast, raw, won't give you a break to breathe! This album is the quintessential thrash record. I still remember when I heard it for the first time back in 1989. I thought I have heard it all back then, but little did I know that Sodom could come back with an album even better than the incredible Persecution Mania... this album continues with the war saga that is a constant obssession for Sodom: Vietnam. It is, in spite of all the metal aggression a moving and genuine tribute to human suffering. I quite like that the album finishes with a hard rock touch provided by a Tank cover, Don't Walk Away... Apart from being a classic album, this comes with extra live tracks as a cd two, and reminiscences from Tom Angelripper (mentioning among other things that thanks to this album he started making a living out of the music and could leave behind his work in a mine!)... don't think it twice, just get it! you won't regret it! (the price is very, very reasonable too, you won't get better value for money)
It's great to finally have a re-mastered version of one of the most iconic old school head-banging friendly songs ever in the form of Agent Orange... I'm sure I don't have to mention the other great ones, the old school guys know them pretty well. The album is great with Ausgebombt (great track), Magic Dragon, and tanks cover tDon't walk away etc. do listen to the lead of Exhibition bout i remember it used to be one of my fav thrash metal leads... all in all a good thrash album one of Sodoms finest. The remastered thing took the cake for me and for a collector it's great...
Sodom's third album was the one which really earned them their place as one of Germany's finest thrash metal bands. This is a classic in the genre as it is full of insane machine gun drumming, brutally fast guitar riffs and harsh, growling vocals, courtesy of Tom Angelripper and co. This is also Sodom's greatest achievement in creating ultra heavy and fast metal music. If you are a fan of thrash metal music, then you simply have to buy this, you won't be disappointed.