BENEDICTION — Subconscious Terror

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BENEDICTION - Subconscious Terror cover
2.93 | 6 ratings | 3 reviews
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Album · 1990

Filed under Death Metal
By BENEDICTION

Tracklist

1. Intro - Portal to Your Phobias (2:28)
2. Subconscious Terror (3:41)
3. Artefacted Irreligion (3:20)
4. Grizzled Finale (4:01)
5. Eternal Eclipse (3:41)
6. Experimental Stage (3:40)
7. Suspended Animation (3:36)
8. Divine Ultimatum (4:58)
9. Spit Forth the Dead (4:44)
10. Confess All Goodness (3:54)

Total Time: 38:07

Line-up/Musicians

- Ian Treacy / Drums
- Peter Rewinski / Lead Guitar
- Mark "Barney" Greenway / Vocals
- Paul Adams / Bass
- Darren Brookes / Rhythm Guitar

About this release

Nuclear Blast Records, September 2nd, 1990

Recorded and mixed at Soundcheck Studios, Birmingham in September 1989 and January 1990.
Engineered by Pete (Sonic) Gault.
Produced by Mick Harris and Benediction.

Also released as a limited LP on splatter-coloured vinyl.

The 1996 digipack re-release features the tracks from "Dark is the Season".

Nuclear Blast 2-CD "Reloaded" re-release (2008):
CD 1: Subconscious Terror (1990) / Dark Is The Season EP (1992)
CD 2: The Grand Leveller (1991) / "The Grotesque" & "Ashen Epitaph" (1994)

Thanks to UMUR for the updates

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BENEDICTION SUBCONSCIOUS TERROR reviews

Specialists/collaborators reviews

Vim Fuego
Spooky introductions are crap. Unfortunately, many metal bands have tried them over the years, like Benediction did here. It seems like back–masked vocals over atmospheric noises are supposed to be scary. The noises weren't very effective, even in 1990.

Luckily, things improve. Kicking off the title track with a rumbling bass drone, Benediction proved very quickly they do things a little differently to the average death metal band. For one thing, they show an excellent understanding of dynamics. While most bands were trying to go faster/heavier/more brutal, Benediction were one of the first to reign in the speed and add thunderous mid–paced passages to songs. Slowing down the tempo ups the effectiveness of the drumming. Ian Treacy is of the school of "who gives a shit if it's out of time, as long as it's heavy" drumming, but he really grabs your attention here, with the drums well up in the mix. The bass drum is particularly solid, like dropping bricks on your head.

There's a kind of famous guy doing vocals on this album. Barney Greenway growls his way through the album, in atypical death metal style. It is easy to see why Napalm Death grabbed him permanently after this album. His hardcore approach to death metal vocals made the lyrics easily decipherable, where most death grunts would have rendered them unlistenable. Barney's political awareness surfaced on the track "Divine Ultimatum", making a refreshing break from the satanic and/or gore riddled fare most bands peddled. Elsewhere on the album, there are good doses of blood and guts and Beelzebub, but there are also tales of psychosis and nightmare induced insanity.

To be brutally honest, this album does sound dated, but as a period piece, it is an excellent example of a band already looking to the future direction of death metal. This is also on blood and gore splattered vinyl, which is a nice visual touch.
UMUR
"Subconscious Terror" is the debut full-length studio album by UK death metal act Benediction. The album was released in September 1990 by Nuclear Blast Records. "Subconscious Terror" was recorded and mixed by Mick Harris (at the time drummer in Napalm Death) and Benediction between September 1989 and January 1990. It´s interesting to note how fast things were going for the young band who had been formed in February 1989. In the time between February 1989 and September 1989 when they started recording "Subconscious Terror", Benediction had drawn the interest of Nuclear Blast Records because of their "The Dreams You Dread" demo tape and inked a deal with the label. All in the course of 8 months. It would take one year further before "Subconscious Terror" was released.

"Subconscious Terror" turned out to be a very succesful release for Benediction, who really put themselves on the UK death metal map with the album. In those days they were ranked among the elite of UK death metal along side acts like Carcass, Napalm Death, Cancer and Bolt Thrower. One of those acts, namely Napalm Death would have a great influence on the future of Benediction though as lead vocalist Mark "Barney" Greenway left Benediction to join Napalm Death as a replacement for Lee Dorian shortly after the release of "Subconscious Terror". Mark "Barney" Greenway was quickly replaced by Dave Ingram who also toured with Benediction in support of the album.

The music on "Subconscious Terror" is raw and simple death metal. This album is as old school as they get. Mark "Barney" Greenway´s growls are deep, brutal and distinct. His performance here is one of the assets of the album. One other great asset on the album is how well the tracks are written. These tracks are memorable and contain tempo changes and brutal hooks. The tempo is mostly kepts mid- to fast paced, so don´t expect this to be an album full of blast beats. The downsides to the album are the relatively weak musicianship (especially the sloppy, awkward and untight drumming by Ian Treacy drags my rating down) and the quite lo-fi, raw and noisy sound production. It sounds like the album was recorded in someone´s garage and the bad sound quality doesn´t always do the tracks justice.

I didn´t use to enjoy "Subconscious Terror" much and while I´ve owned the album around 20 years now my vinyl copy isn´t exactly worn. Lately I´ve been giving the album a chance again though and I´ve found that I enjoy "Subconscious Terror" more now than I did back when I initially purchased the album. I´d say a 3 - 3.5 star (65%) rating is warranted.

Members reviews

Vobiscum
"Intro - Portal To Your Phobias" is an introduction through bizarre. Not much to say about it unless it is too long.

"Subconscious Terror": The title track begins with the bass of "Paul Adams" and the drum "Ian Treacy," which stands out in this particular track.Initially it seems that we are facing a band of "doom metal" riffs so dragged. The sound changes a little to one side more "hardcore" when drummer decides to act ...

"Mark" Barney "Greenway" lacks the vocal level of something different. Luckily for him and "Napalm Death", there was another story.

"Artefacted Irreligion" takes the feeling of "doom metal". The riffs dragged return, sometimes alternate, but in general the "death metal" predominates. Good music even without big news.

"Grizzled Finale" follows the lines of what has been the album, with some variation of speed and mixed with slow riffs.

"Eternal Eclipse" gives way to the talent of "Ian Treacy" that starts the range. It's a song faster than the previous tracks.

"Experimental Stage" explores sound and the riffs and the "death metal", making this track a standout.

"Suspended Animation" get dragged into that line gain speed with dual pedals, riffs and a beat hardcore. In the style "death metal" to be, the track is instrumental.

"Divine Ultimatum," "Spit forth the Dead" and "Confess All Goodness" finish the debut album from British band of "death metal" Benediction. Not their best album yet, the result is not displeased.

For those who like "death metal" worth listening to know a little about the origins of style and also for those who enjoy "metal" in general, it is curiosity.



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