Top 10 Testament Songs

Testament Songs

Photo: Cecil [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]

Testament are a thrash metal band from Berkley, California. Formed in 1983 and originally called Legacy, the bands current line-up features guitarists Eric Peterson and Alex Skolnick, lead vocalist Chuck Billy, drummer Gene Hoglan and bassist Steve Di Giorgio. They have had numerous line-up changes since their inception with Peterson being the only constant member. Billy has been a member since 1987 after replacing original vocalist Steve “Zetro” Souza who left to replace Paul Baloff in Exodus just prior to recording their first album The Legacy. This makes him and Peterson the only two members to have played on every recording.

They are often seen as one of the most influential and successful bands in the thrash metal scene, being seen as one the key bands of what is dubbed the “second wave” of thrash of the late 1980’s. Overall they have sold over 14 million albums. Their discography consists of 11 studio albums, 4 live albums, 6 compilation albums, 12 singles and 3 DVD’s. After the release of their debut, they broke big with the follow-up The New Order in 1988 and the next four albums after this were very successful, entering the billboard charts. They have experienced several resurgences in popularity over the course of their career and have toured consistently. They are currently working on their twelfth album, so here’s a look at ten of the best so far…

 

# 10 – Burnt Offerings

Testament’s debut was a strong album that quite understandably quickly got them recognition. A classic early track from 1987’s The Legacy, this is a very impressive song from a technical point of view, starting off with a melodic intro before exploding into a classic piece of thrash. Billy’s low sounding vocals coupled with Peterson’s complex guitar work make this a truly brilliant headbanger.

# 9 – Trial by Fire

The Legacy may have been a strong debut but with 1988’s follow-up The New Order, Testament proved that there was more good stuff to come. With this album, they further proved that in addition to being a very heavy and intense band they were also very accomplished musicians, with this track in particular featuring some rather complex arrangement’s, somewhat reminiscent of early Metallica. The song also has some well written and thought-provoking lyrics about someone being on trial accused of a crime.

# 8 – Native Blood

A modern-day Testament song off 2012’s Dark Roots of the Earth which interestingly takes inspiration from Native Americans both lyrically and musically, featuring a tribal intro. It is a very crushing track that shows that Testament still has interesting stuff to offer in the 21st century. The style of the number clearly shows that Testament has been listening to and taking inspiration from a lot of the modern metal bands with the riff on the chorus having an almost metal core feel to it. A heavy sounding and lyrically impassioned song that shows that the band is still musically relevant.

# 7 – Apocalyptic City

Another Legacy track showed that despite the upcoming rise of more extreme genres such as death and black metal, thrash was not an irrelevant genre and still had some strong material to produce. With classic thrash lyrics dealing with apocalyptic themes, its brilliant riff and solo towards the end also showed that even at this early stage, the band had some great potential progressive tendencies. Clearly a band who were already ready to join the thrash elite.

# 6 – Sins of Omission

This track was featured on the third album, 1989’s Practice what you Preach. It shows progression on Testament’s part, not quite being out and out thrash and taking the approach of the 90’s post-thrash “groove metal” pioneered by the likes of Pantera and later Machine Head. It is not as overly technical as previous material and has more of a free-flowing feel. With that said, there are still some killer solos included and it is definitely fast in parts.

# 5 – Into The Pit

Probably Testament’s most iconic anthem off Legacy and one that the title would suggest is a fan favorite at live shows, even though it is not actually about moshing. The lyrical content is rather dark, about falling into a deadly pit of death. It is one of the band’s shorter numbers, clocking in at just under three minutes and casting aside technicality in favor of pure speed and aggression. All in all a definitive thrash metal classic.

# 4 – Disciples of the Watch

This cut from The New Order is another great track that shows the band’s technical proficiency as well as their penchant for well-written fantasy-based lyrics. It is also another song that is rather early Metallica-esque, with them clearly being a big influence on Testament at the time. It has a good dark atmosphere that makes for an effective listen.

# 3 – Return to Serenity

Off fifth album 1992’s The Ritual this is a slow number which showed that Testament were not limited to pure thrash. Lyrically, it comes from a personal perspective of feeling lonely and depressed. It is also very well-played and is easily something that could have potentially got them some mainstream radio play.

# 2 – Over The Wall

The lead track off from Legacy which even had its own video, getting Testament off to a bright start. Musically it is a very uncompromising and energetic sounding thrash anthem. Like many tracks on the first album, it was written by vocalist Steve Souza who left before the recording process, leaving Billy to take over vocal duties. It is actually one of two songs that was written by Souza exclusively, the other being “Alone in the Dark.” Lyrically, it is about being imprisoned and wanting to escape “Over The Wall!”

# 1 – Electric Crown

Also off The Ritual, this track is another one that saw Testament move away from all out thrash to more mid-paced metal without overly compromising. Although Testament have always been very talented musicians, here they are showing what they can do with their talent, as at this point they were moving into a new era beyond the golden age of thrash. The lyrics here are very thought-provoking and reflective of life in general with talk of wasted years and facing death. Another track that was a little more mainstream, but still a brilliant piece of heavy metal.

Updated June 20, 2023

Top 10 Testament Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023

Classicrockhistory.com claims ownership of all its original content and Intellectual property under United States Copyright laws and those of all other foreign countries. No one person, business, or organization is allowed to re-publish any of our original content anywhere on the web or in print without our permission. All photos used are either public domain creative commons photos or licensed officially from Shutterstock under license with ClassicRockHistory.com. All photo credits have been placed at the end of the article. Album Cover Photos are affiliate links and the property of Amazon and are stored on the Amazon server. Any theft of our content will be met with swift legal action against the infringing websites.

DMCA.com Protection Status

 

Add Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Drinking Songs
Top 10 Drinking Songs In Rock Music
10 Favorite Videos Of Rock Drummers Singing Lead
10 Favorite Videos Of Rock Drummers Singing Lead
Spooky Tooth Albums
Complete List Of Spooky Tooth Albums And Discography
Foo Fighters Songs
Top 10 Foo Fighters Songs
Stevie Nicks Albums
Top 10 Stevie Nicks Albums
Our Ten Most Listened To Albums Of All Time
Our Ten Most Listened To Albums Of All Time
Thin Lizzy Albums
Top 10 Thin Lizzy Albums
Sinead O’Connor Songs
10 Sinéad O’Connor Songs We Love The Most
Classic Rock Radio 104.3 FM Becomes New Home of NY JETS
Classic Rock Radio 104.3 FM Becomes New Home of The NY JETS
Ronnie Montrose Remembered 2024 Tribute Concert Review
Ronnie Montrose Remembered 2024 Tribute Concert Review
The Forgotten Pioneer: Bob Welch's Role in Fleetwood Mac
The Forgotten Pioneer: Bob Welch’s Role in Fleetwood Mac
Billy Joel's new single
Billy Joel To Release Brand New Song On February 1st 2024
Pat Reilly Interview
Pat Reilly of Eramnesia / Fallahin Fall Interview
AJ Mills Interview
AJ Mills Of KK’s Priest: The ClassicRockHistory.com Interview
Frank Sidoris Interview
An Interview With Frank Sidoris of Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators/ Slash/ Mammoth WVH
Tim Lefebvre: 10 Albums That Changed My Life
Tim Lefebvre: 10 Albums That Changed My Life
Drake Albums
Complete List Of Drake Albums And Songs
Michael Jackson Albums
Complete List Of Michael Jackson Albums And Discography
Metallica Albums Discography
Complete List Of Metallica Albums And Songs Discography
Allman Brothers Band Albums And Songs
Complete List Of Allman Brothers Band Albums And Songs
Classic Rock Bands Still Together But Overdue For A New Album
Classic Rock Bands Still Together But Overdue For A New Album
When Glam Bands Went Grunge In The 1990s
When Glam Bands Went Grunge In The 1990s
25 Most Famous Female American Singers Now!
25 Most Famous Female American Singers Now!
The Grateful Dead's Keyboard Players
A Look Back At The Grateful Dead’s Keyboard Players
Led Zeppelin Compilation Albums
Complete List Of Led Zeppelin Compilation Albums And Songs
Foghat Night Shift Album Review
Why We Loved Foghat’s Night Shift Album
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Return of the Dream Canteen Album Review
Red Hot Chili Peppers: Return Of The Dream Canteen Album Review
The Chick Corea Elektric Band The Future Is Now' Album Review
The Chick Corea Elektric Band ‘The Future Is Now’ Album Review