Municipal waste founder Ryan Waste (left) and Nick Poulos brandish their RIP Custom and Ibanez rock machines.

Photo by Adam Malik

On their newest full-length rager, Electrified Brain, the thrash vets reference classic heavy riffs and tones while rocking their hearts out.

Municipal Waste guitarist Ryan Waste is passionate about old-school metal. “I’m as much a fan as a player,” he attests, “so I try to keep as true to the roots as possible.” His allegiance to metal’s early days is loud and clear on Electrified Brain—the band’s most recent record—a 14-track, 34-minute explosion of vintage, full-throttle thrash at its finest. Leaning heavily into the sonic template forged by albums like Metallica’s Ride the Lightningand Slayer’s Reign in Blood, Electrified Brain easily qualifies as a contemporary torchbearer for the genre and effectively associates Municipal Waste with the New Wave of Traditional Heavy Metal scene. By embracing the tried-and-true ’80s-era sonic stew of Marshall amps and standard-tuned guitars, and by avoiding modern production aesthetics that rely on click tracks and drop-tunings, the band has crafted an album that captures the incendiary spark of pure, unadulterated OG thrash.

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