Single Slam – Awakening by Sacred Reich (Awakening)

Thrash icons, Sacred Reich, release the first single, and title track,  from their new album, Awakening. Their first album release in 23 years.

Now with former Machine head drummer, the brilliant Dave McClain, back on drums, Sacred Reich have finally produced some new metal for us to get stuck in. Dave was the drummer with Sacred Reich from 1991 until 1995 before heading off to Machine Head for a hugely successful career. The last album Sacred Reich released was in 1996, with the album Heal. That was also the last album Dave recorded with Sacred Reich. It’s almost like they were waiting for him. Well, he is back now so bring on the metal!

The album, Awakening, is due for release on the 23rd of August via Metal Blade Records. Sacred Reich are Phil Rind on bass and vocals, Wiley Arnett on lead guitar, Dave McClain on drums and Joey Radziwill on rhythm guitars.


Awakening is a just over 4 minutes long and is a ripping track. Right from the off we jump in to a thumping riff and drum beat. A squealing lead guitar comes in and blazes out a solo. Vocals are delivered at a slow pace over the rhythmic riff and drum patterns. The drums are phenomenal, as you would expect from Dave McClain. I love how each vocal passage is bookended by a glorious solo too.

The only real issue I have is with the vocals. They aren’t bad but in comparison to the music, they lack a bit of power and aggression. They aren’t a major issue, just not quite as impressive as the instruments. Still, any doubts get quickly washed away in the over 1 minute long ending where we get treated to a hard hitting instrument section. Chunky bass, pounding drums and guitars see us out in a final part designed for headbanging.

Awakening isn’t a great song but it is very good. The music isn’t particularly new or fresh but it is banging. Good, solid metal. Vocals aren’t as impressive as I hoped for though but I still found myself enjoying the song immensely. Mostly off the back of the crunchy riffs and insane solos. Will be interesting to see how the rest of the new album plays out. Welcome back, Sacred Reich.

Awakening is out now on all the usual streaming platforms. Preorder the new album from Metal Blade in a ton of different formats here.


Sacred Reich on TwitterSacred Reich on FacebookSacred Reich on InstagramMetal Blade Records



  • Brendan Fisher

    Owner/Editor/Writer/YouTuber - Heavy Metal and reading, two things I have always loved so they are the two areas you will find most of my reviews. Post apocalyptic is my jam and I always have a book on the go and have for decades now. From a metal perspective, age has softened my inadequacies and I now operate with an open mind, loving many bands from many sub genres but having a particular admiration for the UK underground scene. In my other time, when not focused on Dad duties and work, I try to support the craft beer movement by drinking as much of it as I can and you will also find me out on the streets, walking. I love walking, I love exploring new places and snapping nature photos as I go.

Awakening by Sacred Reich (Awakening)
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