Irish thrash maniacs Gama Bomb have just hit the launch button on their third full-length, Tales From the Grave In Space (Earache) and simultaneously achieved the feat of becoming the first metal band in history to offer their record for free while under a recording contract. The record continues from where the band’s previous effort, Citizen Brain, left off at a break-neck speed.

Gama Bomb is clearly part of the resurgence of thrash bands that, with their sound, recall the glory days of the genre when bands such as Nuclear Assault, Flotsam And Jetsam and Kreator were laying waste to everything in sight for the sake of the almighty mosh. These guys are obviously obsessed with the likes of zombies and the world of science-fiction (giving nods to director John Carpenter, Kurt Russell and the Terminator among others), as it shows in their lyrics, drenched in an obnoxious sense of humor.

Tales From the Grave In Space is filled to the frantic brim with such tongue-in-cheek ideas. Sample lyric from ‘Return To Blood Castle‘: “Refined psychopath with a metal jaw….Primitive justice comes to call! An angry mob approaches, peasants the lot of them….toting a priest and some pitchforks, just like a Dracula film!” Such lyrical imagery is present from the record’s warp-speed start, through songs with titles like “Polterghost”, “Skeletron” and “Mussolini Mosh” and the band’s collective foot is never released from the accelerator until the end of the closer, “Mummy Invasion”. The record’s guitar and solo work are of the finger-blistering persuasion and the vocals reach near-King Diamond range at times. The only real complaint with sound comes with how the insane drum fills sometimes seem buried under the rest of Gama Bomb’s lunacy and laughter.

When all is said and done, if you’re looking for something totally mind-blowing and new in the way of a thrash record, Tales From the Grave In Space might not be your cup of tea. However, if you’re a complete purist in the mood for an old school sound and simply looking for something to assist you in some no frills, self-induced head-banging whiplash and maybe a laugh or two, then Gama Bomb’s new effort might be worth your while…and the band is literally giving it away!