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ACIDRODENT Of Human Toxicity

Album · 2015 · Industrial Metal
Cover art 4.00 | 1 rating
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Unitron
Acidrodent - Of Human Toxicity

'Of Human Toxicity' is the fourth studio album by industrial metal band Acidrodent. Originally starting out as a dubstep project by musician Tony Smith, Acidrodent eventually evolved into an industrial metal band which is heard here. This release shows the increasingly heavier style release after release now fully take form.

Taking the attitude and lyricism of Grindcore, crushing industrial thrash, distorted glitch techno, and even some drone elements, Acidrodent brings an aggressive onslaught of industrial metal that acts as giving the finger to 'Political Correctness'. With such song titles as 'In Praise of School Shootings' and 'Vomit Me a River', you know you're not going to be taken on any fantasy ride or a compelling concept album. This is pure gritty industrial metal with the same carefree attitude of bands like White Zombie.

The song 'Bombs Away', opens up the album really well. It's a perfect mix of distorted vocals and great guitar work. My favorite song on the album is definitely 'Broken', which is an awesome barrage of industrial thrash and glitching electronics. Karen Righeimer's bouncy bass and Roland Zwaga's snarl-y aggressive voice are perfect for the gritty industrial sound. 'Vomit Me a River' is another favorite, with machine-gun electronic attacks, crushing guitar, and the grotesque lyrics fitting perfectly with Zwaga's vocals. While not my favorite, the song 'Pyre' mixes the music up with its droning electronics.

Overall, if you want some unapologetic industrial metal this would be an excellent choice. If you're not used to gruesome lyrics, it may be a bit hard to get into but I loved the anti-'PC' attitude. Once I got hooked, it's difficult to stop listening to 'Broken'. I highly recommend this album to any fans of the gritty side of industrial metal. Hope you found this review helpful.

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LUCIFER 1

Album · 2015 · Doom Metal
Cover art 4.00 | 2 ratings
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Nightfly
It came as a shock to many when Johanna Sadonis whose previous band The Oath having just released their debut album with positive reviews promptly split. She wasted no time forming Lucifer bringing the bands drummer Andrew Prestidge with her. Bass player Dino Gollnick was about to join The Oath at the time of the split and was also recruited. At the suggestion of former Cathedral frontman and Rise Above Records boss Lee Dorrian she approached ex- Cathedral guitarist Gaz Jennings who was only too happy to jump on board.

Hot on the heels of a single “Anubis” their debut album titled simply 1 was quickly written. Not surprisingly parallels can be drawn between Lucifer and The Oath, most obviously Sadonis’s soaring and haunting vocals. The Oath were more of a hard rock band and Lucifer have that too but this has more of a retro metal edge, no doubt down to the inclusion of doom riff meister Jennings whose instantly recognisable playing is a highlight of this excellent album. 1 lives up to the hype it’s been receiving with eight well written songs of doom metal/heavy rock. “Total Eclipse” is a highlight starting with a typical crushing slow doom riff before picking up the tempo and lightening up somewhat in the process. In truth though like all great albums it’s the sheer consistency of material that makes 1 such a compelling listen. There’s plenty of light and shade to compliment the brutal riffing with Jennings slipping in some tasteful clean guitar parts too like on” Purple Pyramid” with chiming arpeggios contrasting well with the driving riffing.

Whether the partnership between Sadonis and Jennings lasts remains to be seen – Jennings also has his own project Death Penalty on the go. I hope it does because if they can put out albums of this quality in such a short space of time then it bodes well for Lucifer 2.

SYMPHONY X Underworld

Album · 2015 · Progressive Metal
Cover art 4.56 | 6 ratings
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Nightfly
When Symphony X released Paradise Lost in 2007 it marked a shift in direction with the metal elements taking precedence over the prog making it their heaviest to date. Iconoclast, released in 2011 marked an even bigger shift in that direction. Four years later they have now released their ninth studio album Underworld and it’s a killer!

Where does it fit in with past releases then? While it sits more comfortably with the last two albums than anything before – this really kicks ass! - it marks a return to more emphasis on the melodies. This is particularly noticeable with Russell Allen’s vocals who went for a harsher style of singing on the last two albums. He does that here too at times but they’ve clearly put a lot of effort into giving much of the material here strong vocal hooks. As usual Allen’s vocals are stunning – if there’s a better metal vocalist out there at the moment I’ve not heard him. Don’t be led into thinking they’ve gone soft though, this is a very heavy album – just listen to Kiss Of Fire for proof with some stunning instrumental interplay and even some blastbeats from drummer Jason Rullo who never fails to impress me with his incredible technique. Of course the rest of the band live up to the high standards they’ve previously set themselves too. There are times however, like on Swansong where they lay back a bit and this could fit comfortably on some of their earlier albums like V.

This album is stunning from start to finish making picking favourite tracks futile. Back in 2011 I rated Iconoclast as their best yet, in truth Paradise Lost was just as good but Underworld is the equal of both of them making a trilogy of albums the equal of any metal band. Album of the year? Could well be.

PSYCROPTIC Psycroptic

Album · 2015 · Death Metal
Cover art 4.00 | 1 rating
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UMUR
"Psycroptic" is the eponymously titled 6th full-length studio album by Australian death metal act Psycroptic. The album was released through Prosthetic Records in March 2015 and is the successor to "The Inherited Repression" from 2012. While especially drummer David Haley has been quite busy in recent years with other projects (Pestilence, The Amenta, Ruins... among others), he and the other three guys in Psycroptic have still found time to have a relatively steady release cycle for Psycroptic. They´ve also managed to have a steady lineup since "Symbols of Failure" from 2006, when Jason Peppiatt replaced original singer Matthew "Chalky" Chalk.

Psycroptic started out playing a relatively brutal type of technical death metal, but they´ve slowly changed their style over the years towards a more groove oriented techncial death metal style with "core" leanings. The core element is mostly due to Peppiatt´s vocal style which ranges from brutal growling to more aggressive core tinged vocals. The instrumental part of the music is groove oriented technical death metal. While listening to the album I pictured what it would sound like if Decapitated and Lamb of God teamed up for a project.

Psycroptic are very skilled performers and while the core tinged vocals is probably an obstacle for some, the execution of the music is really something to behold. These guys can both groove and do it while playing some technically advanced riffs and rhythms. There´s an organic atmosphere to the proceedings which is greatly enjoyable, and which is helped further along by the well sounding and for the style rather organic toned production.

The material on the 9 track, 37:45 minutes long album is also relatively varied, and it doesn´t take more than a few spins to be able to tell the tracks apart. This is one of the issues I´ve had with some of Psycroptic´s earlier releases, but they´ve stepped up here, and this self-titled release is overall a really strong effort by Psycroptic. A 4 star (80%) rating isn´t all wrong.

SHINING IX – Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends

Album · 2015 · Black Metal
Cover art 4.00 | 2 ratings
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UMUR
"IX – Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends" is the 9th full-length studio album by Swedish extreme metal act Shining. The album was released through Season of Mist in April 2015. While there are 3 years between this one and it´s predecessor "Redefining Darkness (2012)", Shining has kept busy in the intermediate years with the release of the "8 ½ – Feberdrömmar i vaket tillstånd (2013)" album, which is an album with re-recordings of earlier material, and the release of a couple of splits/EPs. There have been a couple of lineup changes since the last album too as Rainer Tuomikanto has replaced Ludwig Witt as the band´s new drummer, and Euge Valovirta has been added to the lineup has second guitarist. The usual suspects are Niklas Kvarforth (vocals, guitars), Peter Huss (guitars), and Christian Larsson (bass).

Stylistically the music on "IX – Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends" is pretty much Shining as we know them (in recent years). The depressive Swedish language lyrics are performed passionately by frontman Niklas Kvarforth who successfully combines anger and despair when he sings both his raw and clean vocals. You never quite know where you have him. One moment it sounds like he is ready to cut your throat and the next he sounds like he is about to slash his own wrists. The guitars pump out meaty heavy riffs, but also atmospheric riffs and acoustic sections, and lead themes and solos. The well playing rhythm section glues it all together.

The material is well written and while it´s based in black metal, there are also elements of death, thrash, doom, and progressive metal in the music. Acoustic sections have been a part of Shining´s material for years, and that trend continues on "IX – Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends". This time even to the extent where they are occasionally leaving metal territory and entering depressive rock territory. Not completely unlike the Norwegians in Seigmen, which is an act main composer Kvarforth has admired for years, and who Shining even did a cover of on "VI: Klagopsalmer (2009)". So the material is quite varied, and occasionally even a bit quirky (both "Människotankens vägglösa rum" and "Inga broar kvar att bränna" fit that description).

"IX – Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends" is well produced, featuring a powerful, clear, and professional sounding production, which suits the music well. So upon conclusion it´s another high quality release by Shining. I don´t think it´s their strongest output in recent years, but both new listeners and fans should still be able to have a blast with this one. A 3.5 - 4 star (75%) rating is deserved.

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METALLICA St. Anger

Album · 2003 · Thrash Metal
Cover art 1.66 | 100 ratings
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Vim Fuego
If this had been `Re-Re-Load' it would have been easy to write off the album and the band, but it's not. Neither though is it a return to the days of old. The nearest thing Metallica have done to this album is the `Garage Days Re-Revisited' covers EP. It sounds like Metallica playing covers back in the garage again, except Metallica wrote the songs Metallica are covering.

There have been a lot of strange rumours surrounding this album. There were wild eyed, panicked suggestions it would be a nu-metal album, and it sounded just like System Of A Down. After all, there are no solos. It was supposed to contain blast beats and death metal elements, just like Cryptopsy. Hey, Lars has rediscovered double kick drums after more than a decade, and that's what death metal bands use a lot of, right?

Wrong on both counts. True, the trademark Hammett solos are conspicuous by their absence, but nu-metal? Not by even the loosest of definitions. For a start, James Hetfield can actually sing, and Metallica don't have to disguise a lack of musical skill with excessive downtuning. "Invisible Kid" however, is the exception to this generalisation. The song is so shitty it sounds like something Soulfly left in the studio. It is the only real fly in the bowl of cornflakes here though.

Yes, Lars is using both feet again, and the songs are faster than anything the band has written since "...And Justice For All", but putting the odd fast bit into a song doesn't make it death metal by any stretch. Perhaps if Jason Newsted had stayed with the band and lain a death grunt over some of the tracks...? No, it still wouldn't have been halfway brutal enough to be considered death metal. So that's what the album isn't.

What it is though is still a bit confused. The production is strange, with an odd "ping" in the drum sound. The guitars are mostly fat and meaty, as you'd expect, but occasionally drop off to a thin, reedy sound, like some poorly executed mid-80s thrash demo.

Most tracks hit some sort of comfortable groove which get the old headbanging and air guitar reflexes twitching, but then inexplicably, a new riff or a change of pace is thrown in, upsetting the flow somewhat. A couple of tracks, like "Sweet Amber" and "Frantic", hold their groove despite the interruptions.

A lot of the early criticism of the album has been levelled at the lyrical content. Sure, lines like "frantic tick tick tick tick tick tick tock" and "I'm madly in anger with you" are not exactly in the same league as anything off `Master Of Puppets' or `...And Justice For All'. James Hetfield can write songs about the fungi he finds between his toes for all I care. So the lyrics are cheesy. So what? Few bands which have been around as long as Metallica haven't written a few real dogs.

Like the previous two studio efforts though, tracks from `St Anger' make more sense in the live arena than they do on disc. Not Metallica's best, but far from their worst effort (the fucking awful S&M holds that title). Overall, an album full of oddities.

METALLICA S&M

Live album · 1999 · Symphonic Metal
Cover art 3.33 | 48 ratings
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Vim Fuego
From the lean, mean, thrash machine they once were, Metallica have become fat, bloated rock dinosaurs of the type they once despised. The transformation from velociraptor - speedy, sharp and dangerous - to diplodocus - slow, docile and blundering - has been distressing for long time fans to watch. The biggest problem here is that most of the songs are simply not suited for orchestral accompaniment. Like attempting to mix oil and water, it just doesn't work. The band really would have been better to admit the experiment did not work, cut their losses and release a four song EP of the tracks that actually DID work.

Let's be positive here. The tracks that they do pull off are excellent. The obvious one is "The Call Of The Ktulu". The instrumental from 'Ride The Lightning' is the oldest track here, and definitely the best, which is a shame because it's straight after the intro track, and the next two hours are basically a waste of time. Strangely, the only other song from the first four albums which even approaches "The Call..." is "For Whom The Bell Tolls", which is given a huge, militaristic movie soundtrack feel, like something out of `Ben Hur' or `Gladiator'. "No Leaf Clover" was obviously written with this performance in mind. The band lay off a little, allowing the orchestra to flood through. The strings, woodwind and brass sections weave in and out of the simple melody. Unfortunately, the other new track "-Human" is, for want of a better word, shit. The gentle "Nothing Else Matters" is given added facets by the orchestra, although they are obvious, as the original also has orchestral backing.

"Bleeding Me" almost works, as do a number of other tracks, but they are very patchy. The odd introduction or bridge is good, but it is never consistent enough for a whole song. Thrashers like "Fuel", "Master Of Puppets", "One" and "Battery" are absolutely ridiculous. Violins, horns, and triangles just do not belong in a song where someone is shouting "Gimme fuel, gimme fire, gimme that which I desire!" over them. Nor do Jason Newsted's barked backing vocals fit.

In other places, violins play the counter-guitar lines, which are either multi-tracked or where Kirk Hammett's leads would normally be. A third guitar player would have been better than making some unfortunate violinists who have spent decades mastering their art fill in the gaps around a simple plodding guitar riff. That is when there actually are gaps. Much of the time, the orchestral instruments seem to be straining to be heard, and come off as superficial decoration. Much of Metallica's career has been built around a gargantuan rhythm guitar sound. It simply stomps over the subtleties of the orchestration, like Godzilla let loose in the Louvre. At other times, the orchestra is a nuisance, where just hearing the band on its own would be a classic metal moment.

If Metallica were really considerate to their fans, as they used to claim to be before we all started sending them to the poorhouse by stealing their music off the internet, they would have released a reasonable sized unaccompanied live album (not like the overpriced 'Binge/Purge' box set) with the aforementioned orchestral EP as a bonus. Instead, we get the fat Elvis version of Metallica, a self-parody, the once shiny facade dulled by decadence and overblown egos. If you really want Metallica live, get hold of one of the hundreds of bootlegs made of the band. They do not deserve your money for this album.

METALLICA Live Shit: Binge & Purge

Boxset / Compilation · 1993 · Thrash Metal
Cover art 4.52 | 19 ratings
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Vim Fuego
One word describes this release — HUGE! It comes in a huge box, shaped like a band's footlocker. There's a huge nine hours of music inside the box, including a huge triple CD live album and three video tapes of live footage, along with an old back stage pass, a book full of hundreds of pictures and Metallica related documents, and a scary guy stencil. Forget the videos and the packaging, let's concentrate on the live album.

Anyone who has ever seen Metallica can attest to how tight the band are as a live unit, and it shows. There's hardly a slip to be detected anywhere in the entire album. It's not a one shot demonstration of the band however, as it was gathered from five nights in Mexico in 1993. The breaks are hard to find though.

And how does Metallica rate live? A fan really could not ask for much more in a live album. A faithful journey through Metallica's first five albums, a few covers, reinterpretations of some older songs, an excellent showcase of the talents of the band members, James Hetfield's corny but friendly stage banter, and a big dose of plain old heavy fucking metal.

Highlights: the insane reaction of audience members Hetfield grabs to help with singing Seek And Destroy; the addition of the unlisted So What?; Jason Newsted's vocals and the extra gear of Whiplash; Kirk Hammett hitting the solo to One almost note perfect; the near on religious rapture of the entire audience at hearing Metallica live.

One small criticism: the bass and guitar solos by Jason and Kirk both show their utter mastery of their respective instruments, and hold your attention throughout the almost 19 minute break, but why so long? Perhaps cut it back to 10 minutes and throw in another song, like "Fight Fire With Fire" or "Disposable Heroes" or "Leper Messiah".

The three videos are actually two concerts. The Seattle 1989 concert is far more intense than the San Diego 1992 concert. The difference comes because the Seattle show is shorter, and has none of the excesses of the songs from the mostly plodding Black album. As you’d expect though, the band gives it all in both concerts, doesn’t go in for huge, elaborate stage shows a la Alice Cooper, and their performances are everything Metallica are famous for. There’s really not much more to say about them, because if you’re anything like me, you’ll find yourself revisiting the live CDs more than the videos anyway.

Every fan of Metallica needs to hear this. It puts the stodgy, overblown orchestral theatrics of S&M firmly in its place. This is THE definitive Metallica live album.

METALLICA ...and Justice for All

Album · 1988 · Thrash Metal
Cover art 4.31 | 161 ratings
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Vim Fuego
‘...And Justice For All’ was the end of an evolutionary line for Metallica, begun in 1983 with ‘Kill ‘Em All’. It drained Metallica of ideas so thoroughly that the 1991 self-titled follow up saw only a hollow shell of the band which had created four of thrash’s essential foundation stones. This album was a catharsis for the band still coming to terms with the loss of a member. It was also the band’s logical musical destination, as indicated on previous releases.

The effect of Cliff Burton’s death on the band and the final direction of this album can never be underrated. While many songs on ‘Ride The Lightning’ and ‘Master Of Puppets’ explored dark themes, those songs were nowhere near as sombre or personal as ‘...And Justice For All’. Every song has some link to death, whether it be literal or metaphoric, but instead of being detached, as an observer looking on in “Disposable Heroes” or attempting to empathise as in “Ride The Lightning”, it is real, and it is still raw. The shallower, more obvious theme of corruption skirts closer to the surface, and is Hetfield’s re-examination of the demons of his childhood, also explored on the previous two albums.

Jason Newsted had been brought into the band to replace Burton, but he had very little input into this album. He had only the one writing credit, for “Blackened”, as did Burton, for “To Live Is To Die”. James Hetfield wrote the lyrics for the entire album. This might seem a minor point, but looking at Flotsam and Jetsam’s back catalogue, Newsted was the main songwriter and lyricist. He was still suffering the “Newkid” jibes from fans and media, and was apparently suffering severe hazing from inside the band as well. However, he’d proved himself a more than capable player on the ‘Garage Days Re-Revisited’ EP, slotting into the band neatly, but being a covers EP it left him little space to prove himself. Not having the shared experience of the Hetfield/Ulrich/Hammett team may well have put him on the outer for this album.

When it came to the recording process, the drums and rhythm guitar were laid down before the bass, whereas the bass is normally the second instrument added to the mix. For much of the album, Newsted has little to do but follow Hetfield’s lead. This is perhaps the reason it seems Newsted’s bass has gone missing in action. There are bass frequencies there, fucking big ones at times (cheap stereos and speakers often bottom out during the introduction to “Eye Of The Beholder”), but it’s hard to determine which instrument is creating them. Hetfield’s monstrous rhythm guitar is the focus of almost the entire album. The riffs on the album were the sharpest and most focused he’d ever created, but the problem was, there were just far too many. Some of the songs suffer from a few too many ideas, as if there was too much good material to leave any out.

“One” escapes the tyranny of the rhythm guitar for a couple of reasons. First, Kirk Hammett produced the most stunning lead guitar work of his entire career on this song. Hetfield takes a back seat right from the first few notes he plucks. Hammett starts with a blues tinged opening passage, in total contrast to the scorching finale which any lead guitarist would have been proud to write. Best of all though, it all fits the song. Often, leads are afterthoughts, added because a song is supposed to have one. Without the solos, “One” simply wouldn’t have been “One”. The lead guitar adds the feel of beauty and lightness of life, contrasting the darkness of death and war.

Secondly, “One” was the best vocal performance James Hetfield had given to that point of the band’s career. The story of the disembodied soldier was not new, but it was a powerful anti-war message because of the unusual lyrical approach to the song. The despairing first person account is harrowing, a powerful piece of empathic imagination. The final passage simply lists the pathetic remains of a life: “Landmine has taken my sight/Taken my speech/Taken my hearing/Taken my arms/Taken my legs/Taken my soul/Left me with life in Hell”.

The other song which escaped drowning in riffs was album closer “Dyer’s Eve”. Basically, it’s Lars’ song. The guitar takes a back seat as he thrashes about like a man possessed, driving the fastest tempo song the band ever created. There have been many unkind jibes about Ulrich’s percussive abilities over the years, some of them undeserved. Rumour had it that he’d had problems with the rapid fire drumming on this song, so he played it slower and it was sped up in the studio. Adding further weight to the rumour, Metallica didn’t play the song live until 2004. However it was recorded, and whatever the reasons for not playing it live, it crashes out of the fading moments of “To Live Is To Die” like a meteorite. Hetfield’s biting lyrics take childhood angst far beyond mere melancholy into the realm of scorn and rejection. And Ulrich simply beats his drumkit into submission, like a stick wielding whirling dervish, in total contrast to the controlled aggression of the remainder of the album.

There is almost a progressive feel to some of the longer tracks, minus the indulgent excesses normally associated with prog rock. It’s more down to experimentation with song construction and dynamics than multi-instrumentalism or adding outside influences. The band thoroughly explored the furthest reaches of the guitar/bass/drums/vocal combination. Songs like “Blackened” are cut into a number of differing passages, each different from the last, using a range of tempos and feels. Title track “...And Justice For All” builds and builds upon itself, an enormous tower of Babel which never falls. The opening few riffs could very well have ended up sounding stilted and awkward if performed by a lesser band, yet they twist neatly around Ulrich’s floor tom drums, with a Hammett guitar line woven in. Where many bands of the time would have seen a need to add faster sections to the song, Metallica were content to power along at a constant pace, adding fills, cutting the song up, and sticking to the original theme of the song.

“To Live Is To Die” is the last Metallica song to have a writing credit for Cliff Burton. The lengthy instrumental could possibly have gone the same trippy, dreamy path of “Orion” from ‘Master Of Puppets’. Instead, it’s a bleak, harsh sounding song spread over almost ten desolate minutes. It is a decimated landscape, destroyed by humanity’s darkest sins. The heavy pathos is deepened by a short spoken passage, seen by many as a final tribute to Burton.

“The Shortest Straw” is total Hetfield. Sure, the rest of the band is still there, but he dominates the song completely, with wrist snapping riffing and gruff vocals. “Harvester Of Sorrow” is a huge sounding song, with a mechanised military march feel to it. The powerful lyrics are a great example of Hetfield’s writing technique where he removed any reference which made the meaning of the song too obvious, leaving it open to the listener’s interpretation. “The Frayed Ends Of Sanity” also starts with a march, but it’s more like a laboured slave driven procession, which gives way to the swaggering main riff of the song. The lyrics to this song leave no room for ambiguity at all- it’s about psychosis.

As a band, Metallica were somewhat dissatisfied with ‘...And Justice For All’. Ulrich has commented more than once that it is too dry and the band were unhappy with the way their songs were becoming unwieldy nine-minute-plus monsters. Whether subconsciously or entirely by design, this was their last true thrash album. The genre Metallica had helped found and mould had become at once too restrictive and too complex for the band to progress any further, so they regressed instead. When ‘...And Justice For All’ was released in 1988, no one could have foreseen what was coming three years down the track, and fans of this album often still can’t reconcile themselves with the self-titled album which came next.

As it stands, ‘...And Justice For All’ is a masterpiece beyond its flaws. It is a metallic Venus De Milo. There are major blemishes, but what remains is still a work of art.

VENOM In Memorium: 1981-1994

Boxset / Compilation · 1993 · Thrash Metal
Cover art 2.50 | 1 rating
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Vim Fuego
If you are unaware of Venom's influence on thrash, death and black metal by now, you're either too young, or also aren't aware of a few other things, like decimal currency and man landing on the moon.

Anyway, there is no questioning the quality of Venom's more inspired works, but even at their creative peak, the band produced some god awful shit. Unfortunately, this album kicks off with some of those tracks. "Angel Dust", "Raise The Dead", and "Red Light Fever" were off the band's first demo, and production quality aside, they really should not have won the band a recording contract. The songs are like a third rate Motörhead cover band trying to write their own songs for the first time. Contrary to popular belief, Venom were not all about Satanism and the occult. "Red Light Fever" is a tribute to prostitution cheesy enough to make Iron Maiden's "Charlotte The Harlot" sound sophisticated.

The band finally hit their stride with "Buried Alive", a spooky, laid back look at well, being buried alive. Cronos' famed proto–deathgrunt vocals finally seemed to have developed. "Witchin' Hour" follows, which on first listen borrows extensively from Motörhead's "Bomber", but is faster, dirtier, and more evil. It is songs like this that led to the development of thrash. "Under A Spell" is also an excellent early speed metal track. The band also manages a melody, of sorts. The triple hit of undoubted classics "Black Metal", "Countess Bathory" and "1000 Days In Sodom" are the highlight of the whole album. If they do not have you in an air guitar, headbanging frenzy, well, then you are not a thrash fan, as simple as that.

But outside this handful of goodies, there is little else on this album but filler tracks ("Manitou"), good ideas which have remained unfulfilled, ("At War With Satan", "Welcome To Hell") poor ideas which were a waste of effort ("Dead Love"), and utter shit which does not deserve the name Venom alongside it ("If You Wanna War", "Surgery").

Time can be cruel to some bands, and Venom is one of them. Their music now sounds flawed and poorly executed, but when they hit their straps, watch out. It is like it is 1982 again.

All hail Venom for what they helped create.

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