Seconds
Venom: One Thousand Days in Sodom



unholy city, a sinner’s delight/ No one was spared, out of mind, out of sight/ Hatred and slaughter, degradation and lust/ Self-destruction, never counting the cost…”

AD 43. Shortly after killing the son of God (and some time before using His name to enslave the earth and violate its children), Imperial Rome, the most monolithic tyranny yet seen on the planet, founded the city of Londinium. Meanwhile in the Caucasus, the scientist Yacub perfected his genetically grafted snakes, and his diabolical creation would ensure millennia of oppression, torture and death to create hell on earth. The Roman settlement was to be the compound from which these demons exerted their stranglehold on humanity, from which the Beast would reign over his slaves. Babylon, Pandaemonium, Londinium.

“No one knew what went on/ behind the city walls/ No one heard the cries for help/ No one to hear you call…”

Centuries passed and the scattered keepers of light had long since been crucified, branded, incarcerated in catacombs and thrown to lions to entertain the baying masses driven to delirium by starvation and bloodlust. And the demons of Londinium stupefied the senses of an endless supply of slaves with alcoholic poisons while grinding their bones for fuel, to power their insatiable machines of global conquest, exploitation, destruction.

“No-one knew the blasphemy/ The torture and the pain/ No-one saw the madness The priests, they died in vain…”

The grafted snakes set sail to contaminate and plunder and obliterate anywhere the flames of Good and Light still flickered, transforming the world until it resembled what lay within the walls of Londinium – a factory where human flesh was stripped for materials, consciousness perverted and discorporated, the spirit exterminated. More fearsome still than even the deadly technology which enabled the first wave of global subjugation was the primary weapon which guaranteed the Evil Empire’s invincibility – its’ speech. From the cacophonous, sub-animal emanations of the tortured, drunken, brutish armies of slaves within its walls came the language of Londinium, an irresistible, self-perpetuating plague, unquenchable in its appetite for the human minds, human lives, human souls.

“Few could hear the suffering/ And the pain of ripping flesh/ But those who did were damned in hel/l And breathed their final breath…”

(In the Communist East, the Idea became the Soul. And in the Evil Empire’s bastard child America the Soul became the Idea. And Londinium was spared the self-destruction of the former and the vengeance of the global enslaved visited on the latter, as the suffering and torture of the human cattle within this abattoir of evil ensured that no such heresy against Speech could ever be contemplated. Satan has triumphed. Londinium endures.)

“One thousand days in Sodom/ The ways of God, forgotten/ One thousand days/ One thousand years/ You’ve lived your life/ In Hell…”

What the ‘hell’ this has to do with Venom, I’m unsure. (They were actually from Newcastle.) “Thousand Days” is a departure from their other stuff, rather than the brisk puke-punk (think Misfits with everyone plugged into ONE yellow plastic toy Fender Amps with a 3-inch speaker, then echoed throughout a giant mortuary where the power’s been cut off so the bodies are starting to rot and explode sending liquefied putrefaction dripping out the freezers, which actually happened in DC once when the city defaulted on the electric bill) of “Angel Dust” or “Blood Lust”, this is “Blood- CRUST”, as in slooow and festering and entirely oppressive, kind of like what Eyehategod and Iron Monkey would be doing a decade-plus later except with comparatively pristine production values added and the subterranean nearly-detectable punk hooks subtracted. Of course ‘hooks’ are permissible in blackmetal, that’s what they hang dead pigs off of before slitting their guts open! The funky breakdown in the middle complete with phased “Strawberry Letter” bass and maggot-brain guitar is at the exact midpoint twixt Sab’s “National Acrobat” and ZZ Top’s “Thug”, which explains in about 15 seconds where the whole school of southern-sludge metal (inc. Phil Anselmo’s 200 bands – his name is Legion indeed) learned to properly BBQ their midnight offerings. The other reason I love Venom is that in the small and deeply Christ-shagging community I come from the (yes, ‘the’) record shop once displayed some Venom records on the wall, and one day I saw an old lady come in with a Polaroid just to snap pictures of all the covers, the pictures turned up in the local paper the next day and there was a town meeting where Various Church Representatives discussed this ominous social problem about to destroy our town, and next week the shop had the Asia and REO albums back up again, the poor proprietor saying “Must’ve been one of our part-timers playing a prank, we won’t carry those albums ever again!” I’d already bought one, heh heh. (Say that backwards and it’s…”heh heh.”) Oh shit, that’s the phone…

(EDITOR: “Ancient Romans. (sigh) In Times New Roman as well, again. The most boring font in the world. Was that the ‘joke’? Like, what the fuck were you thinking?” DQ: “Um, dunno…Devil made me do it!”)


By: Dave Queen
Published on: 2003-10-30
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