Friday, 27 January 2012

[ALBUM REVIEW] Midnight - Satanic Royalty

Genre - Black/Speed Metal

1. Satanic Royalty
2. You Can't Stop Steel
3. Rip This Hell
4. Necromania
5. Black Damnation
6. Lust Filth and Sleaze
7. Violence on Violence
8. Savage Dominance
9. Holocaustic Deafening
10. Shock Til Blood

After nine long years, Cleveland based sleaze machine MIDNIGHT finally rise from the mire and unleash their debut album of unkempt and filth laden speed metal upon the rabble, and what an album it is. In short, what is essentially the grime enveloped bastard child of eighties Satan loving shock merchants VENOM. The VENOM influence is so obscene that “Satanic Royalty” could almost be mistaken for a lost recording from the UK legends, and I’d be fairly certain that they’d also be the first to admit that this is nothing but shameless adoration at the altar of Cronos and co. But when it’s as good as this, why the fuck should anyone care?

The album’s title track explodes out of the blocks with the energy of a caffeine soaked cokehead, riffing straight from NWOBHM legends TANK and Athenar’s obnoxious snarling. Hell, Athenar could well be Cronos himself minus the receding hairline. The central hook to the song is absolutely enormous, dragging you into MIDNIGHT’s vortex of bitches, booze and blasphemy before spitting you out a disorientated mess. First impressions were “They can’t keep up such a high level of quality and ferocity throughout can they?” Amazingly they do, every single track on “Satanic Royalty” is nothing but high octane Speed Metal strewn with blistering heavy metal soloing and neck breaking riffing tied together with maniacal vocals.

The lyrics are another thing altogether, they’ve got everything from the divine “Marching out from the catacombs of hell, Kingdom’s falling, Bred to destroy the children of Christ” to the peaceful “Skullz will crack brains explode” and they even manage to make room for a love song in the ever so subtle “Lust Filth and Sleaze”; “You give me lust you give me sleaze, I'm gonna bust when you're down on your knees”. And who says romance is dead eh? If you’re looking for the ultimate leather studded and alcohol soaked soundtrack for 2011, then you can’t look much further than this.

It never deviates from what would be expected of a VENOM worship band but remains surprisingly diverse and so engaging that even after repeated listens it never gets old. This is the hurdle where most others attempting the same fall, and MIDNIGHT overcomes this with spectacular ease. “Satanic Royalty” is nothing but pure unadulterated mayhem manifested from a gutter somewhere in Ohio with no aim other than to defile and disgust. Bursting with the raw energy of the genre progenitor’s DISCHARGE and VENOM’s NWOBHM-esque demonic racket with the vulgarity of Blackie Lawless, MIDNIGHT offer thirty minutes of altogether unholy and thoroughly indecent speed metal which is certain to get the adrenaline flowing and horns throwing. VENOM even released a new album this year as well, but why bother when MIDNIGHT are currently doing VENOM better than VENOM themselves?

Orignally written for The Metal Observer

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