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Review: 'Venom'
'Storm the Gates'   

-  Label: 'Spinefarm Records'
-  Genre: 'Thrash Metal' -  Release Date: '14th December 2018'

Our Rating:
My personal interest in black metal is passing and I’ll admit my knowledge is comparatively cursory, but to my ears, for all of their satanic celebration, Venom never plunged the infernal depths of early Bathory at their raw, raging and most nefarious best (and yes, I’m aware the latter took influence from the former, and that as purveyors of ‘extreme’ metal, Venom paved the way for the emergence of ‘back metal. Nevertheless, the fact Bathory’s eponymous debut was rougher than rough and bordered on the squalling unlistenable is precisely the point. Venom were ways cleaner, more accessible, and as such, less dangerous-sounding.

The current incarnation of Venom is now a full decade in, with the threesome of founder member Cronos, along with Rage and Dante bringing the churning chords of satanic thrash across thirteen tracks. And they’re tracks that really drag. For all the pace and bluster, the whole thing feels horribly sluggish, the structures predictable and the production lacking in energy.

Everything congeals in the mid-range, and the lack of variety in tempo and texture makes for a lumpen clod of sameness that’s devoid of dynamic range, variety, or imagination. Everything feels very by-numbers, and the lyrics are pretty naff.

30 years into their career and Venom sound like they’re treading water and recycling all the clichés just to keep on keeping on. ‘Storm the Gates’ isn’t terrible, it’s just lacklustre and wholly unremarkable.
  author: Christopher Nosnibor

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Venom - Storm the Gates