Released in 1990, Sacred Reich released this album at the highest peak of heavy metal before Nirvana reshaped the world forever. Spending the 80's as basically a straight-out thrash metal band, the band grew their sound at the dawn of the new decade by throwing in influences from everything they could; metal, funk, punk, jazz, and even rap. The result? The most potent and lyrically relevant album the band had ever released.
"The American Way" is a potent look at America in a post-Regan world. The title track contains the lyrics, "Lady Liberty Rot's Away" and screaming about "The poor are left to help themselves". The song pounds away with a ton of groove and melody, yet is insanely fierce! Thrashers like "Love... Hate" and "I Don't Know" are as true to their thrash metal roots as possible!
But the amount of groove on this album dares to even rival Pantera at times. "Crimes Against Humanity" crawls without getting boring or repetitive, with the band coming at you like a jackhammer as it pounds some sense into you about the horrors going in the world around you.
The albums best moment comes in about half-way through it with the song "Who's to Blame". Dealing with the censorship movement of Tipper Gore and the PMRC, which resulted in the Parental Advisory sticker, as well as the two suicides that were blamed upon the songs of Ozzy Osbourne and Judas Priest, the song demands that parents understand that music isn't too blame, but that the problem may lie in themselves.
This masterpiece of metal closes with the song "31 Flavors", urging listeners to listen to more than just metal, but everything they possibly can so that they can see that there's more out there and, well, a whole variety out there.
"The American Way" easy stands as one of the best thrash metal albums of all time, and can easily stand as one of the best metal releases of all time.
On a whole, this thing gets a 9 out of 10!
If you can, get this album NOW.