Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Satan Worship - I'm the Devil (2017)

The debut from this German/Brazilian collaboration could hardly ever be accused of not wearing its heart on its sleeve...a black, pulsing, just torn from the chest of a preacher heart. Satan Worship is the product of a couple guys you may know...Marc Reign, skin beater of the mighty Morgoth, laying down the bedrock for a couple of dudes from Sodomizer, whose mainstay's style more aptly fits the sounds of what you'll hear on I'm the Devil. Baseline punk/speed metal with a lot of mandatory nods to Hellhammer,  Motörhead and Venom, performed with a consistent, light-hearted enthusiasm that relies a lot on the character of the vocals to give it a more robust, menacing atmosphere than you might here on a lot of comparable albums...and there are countless of those to choose from.

To that effect, of course, it does possess some charm, as Leatherface's enormous, growling tone leadens down the procession like a gluttonous, obese daemon who emerged from his cave to find that the morning newspaper had already been incinerated on his lawn. Big, dumb, barking, raunchy and lovable gutturals belched out over a riff set that can't have taken more than 3-5 minutes at any point to conceive, hyped up by Reign's bombastic drumming. The tones here sound good, and I actually like that the vox are delivered with such a voluminous swell that lets its ugly sustain carry over the slightly less muscular rhythm tone. Bass is fat as fuck, just listen to that breakdown in "Azrael's Hand", but generally it just tags along with its brother instrument, but the mix of the drums and guitars really hits a shuffling sweet spot that will warmly remind you of a lot of your fave old school punk and hardcore discs given a more ironclad vision. Not every riff pattern on the whole disc is terribly generic, they'll occasionally throw me for a loop, and they also layer on some flimsy but atmospheric leads to round things out.

I won't lie, I had a lot of fun listening here, especially to a handful of tracks like "The Girls of Manson Family", where the vocals and thrust of the instruments concoct a genuine, headbanging elixir I kept putting on repeat...but that is the SOLE reason I'm giving it the positive. When it comes to nuance or genuine nastiness, it falls behind a great many other acts in its niche, so I wouldn't want to mislead anyone into thinking it's glorious for anything beyond its own primal, bloated absurdity. The lyrical subjects are all painfully obvious, few tracks strive for anything beyond a few riffs, and certainly there are tracks which blend into one another on the memory. But when I turn off my expectations, dig the cool logo and cover art, and just want an acceptable hell-blast of leather and spike-endowed excess, then I'm the Devil evoked more than a couple smiles from me and so on some level it's both amusing and successful.

Verdict: Win [7/10]


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