Venom Inc - Ave album review

’Ave some of that

Cover art for Venom Inc's Ave

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Comprising two-thirds of the original Venom (guitarist Mantas and drummer Abaddon) and three-quarters of the line-up that recorded Venom’s Prime Evil album in 1989, plus Tony ‘Demolition Man’ Dolan in place of Cronos on bass and vocals, Venom Inc’s hellfire credentials are undeniable. But do they miss the presence of old demonic croaker Cronos? Not a jot. Ave is as evil as Satan’s bleeding anus and certainly on a par with the early records by the Geordie black metal pioneers.

This writer once described Venom’s debut album Welcome To Hell as having the hi-fi dynamics of a 50-year-old pizza. And one criticism that can be levelled at Ave is that at times it does sound rather too polished for these corrupted tastes. Plus – as you can tell by track titles such as Forged In Hell and I Kneel To No God – it’s utterly, skin-blisteringly remorseless. It’s not until final song – the word ‘song’ is used advisedly – Black N Roll that a hint of the dark humour of old creeps in.

Venom Inc? More like Venom llc: loud, loathsome, cataclysmic.

Geoff Barton

Geoff Barton is a British journalist who founded the heavy metal magazine Kerrang! and was an editor of Sounds music magazine. He specialised in covering rock music and helped popularise the new wave of British heavy metal (NWOBHM) after using the term for the first time (after editor Alan Lewis coined it) in the May 1979 issue of Sounds.