- Nuclear Assault
Thrash metal would have had no heyday without Nuclear Assault. Beginning with Game Over in 1986, the New Jersey longhairs became one of metal's most socially conscious acts, singing about environmental degradation at the same time Slayer was ranting about goat heads. With John Connelly's nasal whine riding atop blitzkrieg guitars and Danny Lilker's mountainous bass, the group hit its peak in 1989 on Handle With Care, a metal manifesto warning against the destruction of the planet.
The group splintered after 1991's dismal Out of Order, with Lilker leaving to form the grind troupe Brutal Truth. The band went out with a whimper two years later on Something Wicked, so it's a treat to see them return, original lineup intact, to save the earth while sparing no eardums.