From a logo that somehow is able to incorporate spears, skulls, bones, and an upside down cross (natch) to the Hellhammer-referencing album title, from a dictum that includes the line “We Must Secure The Total Extermination of ALL RACES” to a factual boast that the album was recorded in three days – even the most cursory glimpse at Genocide’s album lets you know that you are in for old-school total fucking blackness. And Apocalyptic Visions doesn’t disappoint at all. Though one more note on aesthetics before I continue: in the scratchy band photos of the corpsepainted shock troops who comprise Genocide, is member Chaos (Holocaustrings and Propaghanda) really holding a gun or am I just just seeing things? If so, good fucking god, that really ups the ante in the nihilism stakes.
Okay, yeah, yeah, yeah, anyone can pose with corpsepaint and scrawl violent slogans over images of war and devastation – but can Genocide (and let’s face it, with a name like that…) bring the goods? Fuck yes. No satanic wheels are reinvented here – but Apocalyptic Visions is a supremely enjoyable slice of dirty, messy lo-fi blackdeath punk. Owing as much to Sodom as to early Emperor, Hellhammer, and the eternally sneering Carpathian Forest – Genocide have no qualms with occasionally injecting doses of sneering, arrogant rock and roll into their viscous black brew. So while most songs are prolonged screams of pain and bile, suddenly this fucking righteous riff just steamrolls in out of nowhere. And a good bottom-end rhythm section – with that cool punch-you-in-the-stomach feel you don’t get from a lot of trebly black metal. A lot of the numbers are weirdly modal, minimalist, and hypnotic but all of a sudden you’re watching a bunch of vampires play Judas Priest covers while drinking out of human skulls. Or sometimes they just completely lose it and it’s just like – – – FUCK, the frustration level is so high at being unable to express this much inarticulate misanthropy. Oh yeah? Yeah. And no matter how much they try to cover it up with lo-fi grit and speedfreak unpredictability, they actually know their way around their instruments – so it ain’t the thrash n’ grope you might be worried about. Most importantly to my ears, they are steeped in all the goodness of punkoid black metal – antisocial as fuck, screaming their lungs out, maximum blunt force trauma, Motorhead levels of don’t give a fuckness, bullet belts, bleak and wild, they mean it maaaaaaaan. And I mean that in a good way.
Ván Records: www.van-gbr.de