Venom – ‘Black Metal Deluxe Edition’ (Sanctuary) Print
CD Reviews
Written by Johnny H   
Monday, 05 October 2009 06:40

Black_Metal_coverI'm not going to mix my metaphors here, if you've ever heard 'Black Metal' and thought it was shit, then you're a clueless cunt.


Originally released on Neat Records some twenty-seven years ago, this is THE album that started it all for a whole new breed of extreme Heavy Metal, a dynamic and bold sound far more challenging to the listener than they would have ever experienced at the time, and one that today is given full acceptance by the mainstream it once challenged with a raised middle finger.


So when messrs Lant, Dunn and Bray (that's Cronos, Mantas and Abaddon to you and I) sat down in Newcastle to record their album number two with visions of being a DIY Kiss who would only ever play the biggest stages and put on the biggest productions worldwide, they can hardly have imagined that the very title of said album would be something now etched into music folklore, let alone the songs that went into making this album still being heralded as all time classics.


Venom_GroupKicking off with the album's seminal title track this is the sound of a thousand jet engines with your head caught in the slipstream, it sounds brutal now, imagine what we as teenagers made of it back in 1982? It was like aural sex before we even knew what a double entendre was. Carving a niche for horror influenced lyrical themes over a tornado of punked up guitar filth that had initially been honed to three minute slabs of near perfection on the bands classic debut 'Welcome To Hell', the likes of 'Countess Bathory', 'Leave Me In Hell', 'To Hell And Back' and 'Don't Burn The Witch' here are very much the sounds of Venom at the very top of their game. 'Buried Alive' is still very much the claustrophobic mini masterpiece it always was and in 'Teacher's Pet' you have the ultimate schoolboy's paean to young lust.


Finishing up with the teaser to the concept album to end all concept albums 'At War With Satan' you can but marvel at the scale of ambition of this band, who a few years later would play their debut UK headline show at Hammersmith Odeon as part of the 'Seventh Date Of Hell' European Trek, (and captured here on DVD for the first time, as the second disc in this deluxe edition). The rest of the CD in this 'Black Metal' deluxe edition is bolstered with an extra eleven tracks (that's two more than the standard remastered version) with various Radio One Sessions and Single mixes of tracks such as 'Acid Queen' and 'Nightmare'. The two extra tracks here being 'Bloodlust' and 'In Nomine Satanas' taken from the Neat 13 seven-inch single.


So, to the aforementioned DVD. The date of Friday June 1st 1984 will always leave a indelible imprint on my musical psyche as it was the night I witnessed the Hammersmith Odeon 'Seventh Date of Hell' show, and its great to finally see this 'show to end all shows' getting out to a whole new generation of fans having long since been deleted on VHS. Add in two tracks from the 'Video Nightmare EP' and a run through 'Witching Hour' and you have eighty odd minutes of absolutely essential Venom.


Listen, for under ten of your hard earned English Pounds you'll not find a more groundbreaking or complete package of Heavy Metal to buy this year. 


Buy or F.O.A.D clueless cunts!