Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Alternative Rock, Rock, Metal
UK reissue of the British heavy metal act's 1985 album for Neat Records. Includes 6 bonus tracks, 'Nightmare' (12 inch mix), 'F.O.A.D.' (12 inch b side), 'Warhead' (12 inch b side), 'Possessed' (remix), 'Witching Hour' (... more »
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UK reissue of the British heavy metal act's 1985 album for Neat Records. Includes 6 bonus tracks, 'Nightmare' (12 inch mix), 'F.O.A.D.' (12 inch b side), 'Warhead' (12 inch b side), 'Possessed' (remix), 'Witching Hour' (Live) & 'Teachers Pet/Poison/Teachers Pet' (Live).
Powerful Music But Weak Mix
Rob Michaels | portage, mi. United States | 06/18/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is by no means a bad album. In fact, it's pretty damn good. It's massively heavy, has great riffs & really well-written lyrics, but it's still not quite as "groundbreaking" as the previous three. Mostly, the poor mixing is what gives this only a four star rating (at least that's what I think). The whole album is just a little bass-heavy, with the vocals, especially on "Possessed", too far in the background. But that's really the only true negative thing about it. But it is raw, sleazy, heavy & just plain evil. It's pure Venom. The best tracks are "Flytrap", which has just an immensly heavy bass riff; "Satanachist", which has a creepy beginning and some of the coolest lyrics Cronos ever wrote; "Possessed", possibly Venom's most outright blasphemous song (and also concludes the "story" that Venom started with the quote on the back of "Welcome to Hell"); an awesome instrumental called "Wing and a Prayer" which really smokes; and the really rowdy concert-opener, "Too Loud (For the Crowd)", which ends with a little "preview" of a Venom live show. Of the bonus tracks the best are "Nightmare", also a song with powerful riffs & lyrics and opens, believe it or not, with Mantas playing ACOUSTIC! Cronos' bass riffs in the middle are also pretty inspired. Few bands can even begin to compare to these guys. Also, part of Venom's live show is featured here with the extremely rare "Witching Hour" and "Teacher's Pet/Poison" taken from the limited "Hell at Hammersmith" ep. Venom has always been a little sloppy live, but who cares?! Their live shows are always totally over the top, insane & heavy as Hell! What they lack in skill, they more than make up for in pure POWER! "Witching Hour" is, in fact, a thrashers dream come true. Turn it up extremely loud and break all your windows when you play this one. This whole album usually gets poor reviews, but it still sounds like nothing on earth."
Don't dictate to us; we were the first!
Heavy Metal Hero | USA | 04/17/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Make no mistake, this is a great album, but the crusade to get "Possessed" crammed alongside the first trilogy of Venom albums in terms of recognition is futile and really not necessary--it's the lack of memorable musical factors, not the lack of quality, that keeps it the underdog of Venom albums. "Welcome to Hell" will always remain the seminal foundation for extreme metal, and perhaps even challenges "Stained Class" in terms of being the most influencial heavy metal release of all time. "Black Metal" is still unparalleled when it comes to simplistic quality in metal, and of course the epic title track of "At War With Satan" was innovative at the time. But "Possessed" was released in '85, when the floodgates of extreme metal had already been opened by Venom themselves.
It's actually a logical successor to the first 3 albums, and in my opinion, actually blows away "At War With Satan," which in my opinion was mostly saved by the length gimmick of the title track...I consider the other songs on that album except "Rip Ride" (and to a lesser extent "Stand Up (And Be Counted)" to be mediocre filler. The reason why "Possessed" works for me is that Venom does dip back into the tried and true formulas for the previous albums, and very blatantly so. The strong chorus of "Satanachist" wouldn't seem too out of place on BM, right? "Too Loud (For the Crowd)" is the same sort of metal anthem Venom sought with "Stand Up (And Be Counted)" on AWwS, but it betters that tenfold, with plenty of hubris in the lyrics to boot. "Voyeur" is a fun and fast tune in the best "WtH" tradition, and even manages to out-pervert "Teacher's Pet." While none of the other tracks are particular favorites of mine, they remain at a very comfortable quality level; well below even the worst moments of BM, but above the worst moments of "WtH" and some of the accompanying early singles.
The bonus tracks follow the usual pattern of the Venom remasters in that most of them were available on CD either on the Japanese imports or on the singles compilation albums, so they're not quite as desirable as perhaps some of the Assault series or some non-US/UK live tracks would have been as bonuses. Still, the "Nightmare" single really helps the album, as it's probably Venom's best song overall when considering the lyrics, music, and performance. And I think this may be the first time "F.O.A.D." has been on CD, unless I'm forgetting some comp. CD or import I've never seen. The remix of the title track is an obvious bonus track choice, but I'd have preffered to see the live versions of "Witching Hour" and the "Teacher's Pet/Poison" medley from the Hell At Hammersmith EP joined back with the rest of the '85 Hammersmith set on the "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik" CD or one one of the first two albums. There's nothing wrong with these tracks, but as raw and primitive as they are, they sort of feel weird coupled with '85 studio stuff.
So to the supporters of this album, you're in good company. And to the detractors? To the detractors, I only have one question: there's no "Manitou" or Tony Dolan to be found here...How bad can it be?!?!?!?
Where Venom missed the mark
Lunar Strain | United States | 05/25/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Many people think Calm Before the Storm is where Venom screwed up. Actually where Venom tripped up is two years before with the 1985 release of Possessed, the bands fourth album.
Everybody knows Venoms legendary first two albums Welcome To Hell and Black Metal. Though Primative sounding with limited production, there were excellent early thrash/black metal records. The band would make a step forward with the release of At War With Satan. That album featured better production and the band even toyed with progressive song writing. It was a little different than their previous two albums but none-the-less, it was the step in the right direction.
Then came Possessed....
After showing a promising future with At War With Satan, the band missed their mark with their next release. Possessed emerged as de-evolution of the band and was a marginal step down from AWWS. The production was again ruduced to poor methods with Cronos's vocals taking the blunt of it. The songs themselves seemed to suffer and they just lacked punch. Part of the blame could be the internal struggles the band was going through at the time. Guitarst Jeff "Mantas" Dunn has even described his disappointment with the album in interviews. He was so upset with the album at the time that actually departed from Venom to pursue a solo career.
Possessed also wasn't well recieved by fans and the bands Venom inspired were passing them on by. Slayer, Metallica, and Megadeth were all releasing excellent ablums at the time such as Hell Awaits, Ride the Lightning, and Killing Is My Business, all of which are miles ahead of Possessed.
I think this was a pivital time for Venom. If they were able to release a killer album, they might have became as big as the above mentioned bands. With the lackluster release of Possessed, its no wonder they faded into oblivion in the late 80's...
Even with all the negatives surrounding the album, its still will be among interest to metal fans as it really was the last album of the classic era of Venom and the last album to feature the original line-up until the 1996 reunion album Cast in Stone"