There’s life in the old war horse of the apocalypse yet…
Review by Mark Granger
Release date: 27 January 2015
Ah, Venom. One of the most influential metal bands of all time back with their fourteenth (count ’em) album. Have they evolved in the four years since they released Fallen Angels? Would we want them to? Of course you wouldn’t – they’re Venom. You get what you get and it’s exactly what you’d expect.
After a minute or so of ominous rumbling the title track tears its way out of the speakers with some wild guitar and a chugging riff confirming it’s business as usual and – as some other metal band once said – business is good. There’s an urgency to the music here that shouldn’t be present in a band that’s thirty years old, as they rip in to ‘The Death Of Rock N Roll’ – with it’s absurd chorus lyric “We’re killing Kid Creole with devastating thrash” – it’s also clear that they’re having a ball.
‘Smoke’ is the first slow track on the album and it begins with a curiously funky wah riff but soon becomes a solid metal workout. The album dips however with ‘Temptation’, which while have some awesome verse riffing has a chorus that tries to be atonal and interesting and just comes off as annoying. It doesn’t take long for the band to be back on form as the snotty thrash of ‘Long Haired Punks’ whips by at 100 miles per hour like a punkier (natch) version of ‘Bloodlust’. ‘Stigmata Satanus’ keeps up the quality by keeping it simple and heavy and also by throwing in a chorus that’s designed to be yelled back at them at gigs.
From there on in the quality stays high, slow chuggers like ‘Crucified’ and the crushing ‘Evil Law’ provide some old school evil moments and ‘Grinding Teeth’ and ‘Mephistopheles’ keep up the speedy thrash quotient, although the latter sounds remarkably Pantera-esque with its stop-start verse and Cronos sounding not unlike Phil Anselmo… one of those full circle things, I guess.
On From The Very Depths, Venom show there’s life in the old war horse of the apocalypse yet. It’s a bit over long but then again, they’re Venom and I don’t think they care. Plus I wouldn’t want to be the one to argue with them…
- From The Very Depths
- The Death Of Rock ‘N’ Roll
- Long Haired Punks
- Stigmata Satanus
- Evil Law
- Grinding Teeth
- Wings Of Valkyrie