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Album Review

Some musical breakups are permanent, while others are only temporary. The Beatles never reunited; nor did LaBelle (Patti LaBelle's vocal trio with Nona Hendryx and Sarah Dash). But on the other hand, Blondie reunited 16 years after their breakup. So if the hardcore fans of a disbanded group are hoping for a reunion, they might get their wish or they might not. Sinister's hardcore cult followers got their wish; after parting company in 2003, the Dutch death metal combo reunited two years later in 2005 and recorded Afterburner. Sinister, like so many European death metal units, has had its share of personnel changes; on this post-reunion effort, Sinister's lineup consists of Aad Kloosterwaard on lead vocals, Alex Paul on guitar, Bas van den Bogaard on bass, and Paul Beltman (formerly of the band Judgement Day) on drums. Vocally, Kloosterwaard (who used to be Sinister's drummer) is a definite asset on Afterburner, providing a deep, guttural, and totally menacing growl that says death metal in no uncertain terms. Some will miss former lead singer Rachel Heyzer's contributions, but there is no question that Kloosterwaard gets the job done and growls with conviction. Nothing the least bit groundbreaking occurs on this album; whether this Sinister lineup is pummeling the listener at a fast, medium, or slow tempo, the band's fans have heard it all before. But that doesn't mean that Afterburner isn't exciting. Sinister's performances are predictable, but they are also inspired and focused; for those who have a taste for extreme metal, this sledgehammer of a CD is a good, worthwhile listen. Afterburner falls short of essential, but it's a respectable effort, and Sinister's die-hard fans will be glad to have them back.

Customer Reviews

Thoroughly impressed

Well, this record came "recommended" by the itunes automated system. I remembered that I have Sinister's "Hate" full length and the "Bastard Saints" EP as well, so what the heck, I checked this "afterburner" record out. First let me say that there is high value for the dollar as the record is priced $2 cheaper then it should be for the 45 minutes of crushing death metal that you get. This has to be one of the more overlooked records of the year of 2006. Alex Paul could always write a good riff, and he lets 'em fly with reckless abandon on this. On this record his vision is truly realized to the fullest with the new, much more solid drummer. The production is crackling with life as well...reminds me of the mix given to Dew-Scented's "Impact" record. If you were a fan of the older Sinister releases you must own this...also recommended to fans of Monstrosity's later works.


Formed: 1989 in Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Sinister got its start in 1989 when death metal was just starting to gain momentum around the world as a movement. Signing to Nuclear Blast in 1991, they would go on to release five albums between that time and 1998, when they left the label. Moving to Hammerheart Records the next year, they found a new singer in Rachel Heyzer, making them one of the only death metal bands with a female vocalist. Their first album with her, 2001's Creative Killings, was their sixth altogether. The band broke up in...
Full Bio
Afterburner, Sinister
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Customer Ratings