Venom, not to be confused with the other off-shoot of the original band are back with a brand new album entitled, Storm the Gates. Released on December 14th 2018 via Spinefarm Records. The lineup sees original Venom’s Cronos on bass and vocals alongside Stuart “La Rage” Dixon on lead guitar and Danny “Dante” Needham on drums.
If you’re scratching your head wondering who Venom Inc is then, well that band is made up of founding members Jeff “Mantas” Dunn on guitar and Anthony “Abaddon” Bray on drums, with Tony “Demolition Man” Dolan handling bass and vocals. Yes, there are two bands effectively out there under the Venom moniker. All very confusing.
Still, the Venom led by Cronos is back with a brand new album and the biggest question many will have going into this is whether they’re still hold relevancy in 2018 (almost 2019)!
Fear not, Storm the Gates is a decent album as the raspy vocals of Cronos and old-school blackened thrash sound of Venom ring out on Bring Out Your Dead. There’s a purposeful rough edge to the track and album overall that will hit a lot of nostalgia points for fans.
That does begin to wear thin as this long album goes on (13 track!) but the clarity of the riffs and solos makes up for that. Storm the Gates also has a surprising amount of variety in styles too with it extended beyond the thrash/black metal boundaries. This at least makes it sound more modern even if it’s individually track based rather than an album theme.
For every Notorious though there is a middling and bland I Dark Lord. For every rollicking Mantas heavy metal solo such as the one found 100 Miles to Hell, Cronos fails to deliver quality song-writing on The Mighty Have Fallen.
He does manage to keep the album sounding suitably evil though even when things get a little tongue in cheek. Dark Night (Of the Soul) is a great example of that with its punky attitude and silly lyrics.
As the hour long listen wraps up you’re unlikely to be blown away by what is a decent record that has as many high points as it has low. As long as you’re not expecting a redefining album then you’ll get plenty of enjoyment out Storm the Gates.
Venom – Storm the Gates Full Track Listing:
1. Bring Out Your Dead
3. I Dark Lord
4. 100 Miles to Hell
5. Dark Night (Of The Soul)
6. Beaten to a Pulp
8. The Mighty Have Fallen
9. Over My Dead Body
10. Suffering Dictates
11. We the Loud
13. Storm the Gates
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Storm the Gates is available via all major streaming platforms.
Venom - Storm the Gates (Spinefarm Records)
The Final Score - 6/10