VENOM - AT WAR WITH SATAN 12" Vinyl LP Album

- NEAT BERNETT Records, Gatefold Album Cover

  "At War with Satan" is the third album by heavy metal band Venom. With this album, they went back to the more raw, unpolished sound of Welcome to Hell after the more refined albeit darker and heavier sound of Black Metal. This is especially emphasized with the raspy vocals. Shortly after its release, the HMV and WH Smith record chains withdrew the album from their shelves due to its "controversial content", an odd reaction considering that At War With Satan is generally not considered more controversial than any of the earlier Venom albums. Arguably, it was a reaction to the increased publicity the group had received.

 

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"At War With Satan" Album Description

Venom's "At War With Satan," released in 1984, is a landmark album in the evolution of extreme metal. This third offering from the British band saw them return to the raw aggression of their debut, "Welcome to Hell," after the slightly more polished production of "Black Metal." Released on Neat Records with a gatefold cover designed by the band themselves, the "At War With Satan" LP is a collector's item for fans of Venom's brand of blistering black metal.

Unleashing Hell

Musically, "At War With Satan" is a relentless assault on the senses. The opening title track, clocking in at nearly 20 minutes, is an epic of satanic rebellion, featuring Cronos' now-legendary barking vocals and Mantas' scathing guitar riffs. The rest of the album is a whirlwind of short, sharp shockers like "Rip Ride," "Genocide," and the aptly titled "Aaaaarrghh." The production, though raw, is effective in capturing the band's furious energy.

Controversy and Legacy

"At War With Satan" was not without its share of controversy. The album's dark themes and imagery led to its removal from some record stores in the UK. However, this only served to further solidify Venom's reputation as the bad boys of metal.

Over the years, "At War With Satan" has become a cornerstone of black metal and extreme metal in general. Its influence can be heard in countless bands, from Bathory and Slayer to Mayhem and Darkthrone.

The Gatefold Experience

The gatefold cover art of the Neat Records pressing adds to the album's mystique. The illustration, by Trev Reavely, depicts a demonic battle scene, complete with fire, brimstone, and impaled corpses. It's a fitting visual accompaniment to the music within.

Venom's "At War With Satan": The Album That Shocked the UK

Backdrop of the Satanic Panic

The release of "At War With Satan" coincided with the rise of the "Satanic Panic" in the 1980s, particularly in the US. This moral panic was fueled by fears of Satanism and the occult supposedly corrupting young people. Heavy metal, with its often dark imagery and themes, became a target for this paranoia. Venom's unabashedly Satanic imagery and lyrics fit perfectly into the mold religious and conservative groups sought to demonize.

Specifics of the UK Controversy

HMV Withdrawal: One of the major points of controversy in the UK was the HMV record chain's decision to pull the album from its shelves. This was likely motivated by fears of legal action due to the UK's blasphemy and obscenity laws. It signaled that even mainstream retailers were wary of material considered overtly offensive.

Christian Opposition: Christian groups were particularly vocal in their opposition to Venom and "At War With Satan." They saw the band's music as a direct promotion of Satanism and a threat to the moral fiber of society.

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The PMRC Connection: While Venom didn't land on the US-based Parents Music Resource Center's (PMRC) infamous "Filthy Fifteen" list, their album "Possessed" made the cut. This demonstrates how bands like Venom became examples in the cultural war over explicit lyrics and imagery, bridging the controversy between the UK and US.

Public Perception in the UK

The public perception of Venom and the "At War With Satan" controversy was mixed:

Metal Fans: Among existing metal fans, Venom's notoriety probably only enhanced their appeal. The controversy reinforced their rebellious, anti-establishment image, which was attractive to a growing underground scene.

Mainstream Shock: For the majority of the UK public, Venom undoubtedly came across as shocking and extreme. The media often focused on the sensational aspects, potentially reinforcing fears fueled by the Satanic Panic.

Long-Term Impact: While the controversy might have harmed initial sales, it ultimately contributed to Venom's cult status. The censorship attempts amplified their message to a certain degree, making them a symbol for the freedom of artistic expression in an increasingly conservative climate.

In Summary: The controversy surrounding "At War With Satan" was significant because it exemplified the clash between a burgeoning extreme music scene and a morally conservative establishment. It demonstrated the power of music and imagery to provoke fear, and highlighted the anxieties of the time about youth culture and perceived threats to traditional values.

Music Genre:

Punk Crossover Death/Black Metal 

Album Production Information:

The album: "At War with Satan" was produced by: Venom

Record Label Information:

Neat / Bernett Records SB 18008  

Album Packaging:

Gatefold/FOC (Fold Open Cover) Album Cover Design with artwork / photos on the inside cover pages.

Media Format:

12" Vinyl Stereo Gramophone Record
Total Album (Cover+Record) weight: 270 gram  

Year & Country:

1984 Made in France
Band Members and Musicians on: VENOM At War with Satan
    Band-members, Musicians and Performers
  • Cronos - bass guitar, vocals

    Conrad "Cronos" Lant , born on 15 January 1963, is a British musician best known as the founder, bassist, and vocalist of the influential black metal band Venom. Born and raised in Newcastle upon Tyne, England, Cronos played a significant role in shaping the sound and aesthetics of extreme metal during the 1980s.

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    In 1979, Cronos co-founded Venom alongside guitarist Jeffrey "Mantas" Dunn and drummer Anthony "Abaddon" Bray. The band quickly gained attention for their raw and aggressive style, which laid the groundwork for the emerging genre of black metal. With their debut album, "Welcome to Hell" (1981), and follow-up "Black Metal" (1982), Venom cemented their place in metal history, influencing countless bands with their dark and aggressive sound.

    Cronos, known for his distinctive raspy vocals and menacing stage presence, became the face of Venom. His aggressive bass playing style, characterized by heavy distortion and rapid riffing, added a unique dimension to the band's sound. Songs like "Black Metal", "Countess Bathory", and "In League with Satan" became iconic anthems of the genre.

    In 1986, Cronos left Venom to pursue a solo career, releasing his debut album, "Dancing in the Fire". However, his solo endeavors did not reach the same level of success as his work with Venom. In 1995, he rejoined the band for a brief period before departing again to focus on other musical projects.

    Throughout his career, Cronos has collaborated with various musicians and bands, and he has released several albums under his own name. His musical style has evolved over the years, incorporating elements of thrash metal and industrial influences. Cronos has remained an influential figure in the metal community, revered for his contributions to the genre.

    Beyond music, Cronos has shown an entrepreneurial spirit, founding his own record label called Cronos Records. He has also ventured into other areas, such as tattooing, and has showcased his artwork in galleries.

    Cronos's impact on the metal scene is immeasurable. His uncompromising approach to music and his contributions to the development of black metal have left an indelible mark on the genre. He continues to perform and create music, captivating audiences with his intense energy and his distinctive growls. Conrad "Cronos" Lant remains an iconic figure in the history of extreme metal.

  • Mantas - guitar
  • Abaddon - drums
Track Listing of: "At War with Satan"

The Songs/tracks on "At War with Satan" are

  1. At War with Satan 19:57
  2. Rip Ride 3:08
  3. Genocide 3:58
  4. Cry Wolf 4:18
  5. Stand Up (And Be Counted) 3:31
  6. Women, Leather and Hell 3:21
  7. Aaaaargghh 2:24
Album cover photos of : VENOM At War with Satan

High Resolution Photos of venom at war with satan  

 

High Resolution Photos of venom at war with satan  

 

High Resolution Photos of venom at war with satan  

 

High Resolution Photos of venom at war with satan    

Note: The images on this page are photos of the actual album. Slight differences in color may exist due to the use of the camera's flash.
Venom: Pioneers of Black Metal and Controversial Protagonists of Metal Culture.

VENOM - At War with Satan . 12" LP

Thumbnail of VENOM - At War with Satan .  album front cover

Bernett Records SB 18008 , 1984 , France

"At War with Satan" is the third album by heavy metal band Venom. With this album, they went back to the more raw, unpolished sound of Welcome to Hell after the more refined albeit darker and heavier sound of Black Metal. This is especially emphasized with the raspy vocals.

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