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The band ADORIOR hailing from the United Kingdom has just released the first ever 'official' cover version of a BLESSED DEATH song. Their wickedly fast and furious version of 10,000 DAYS OF BLOODSHED along with one the bands original tracks, titled GUTTERS OF CUM, is available on a SPLIT 12" MLP titled ADORIOR / TERRORAMA from NUCLEAR WAR NOW! PRODUCTIONS.

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BLESSED DEATH – DESTINED FOR EXTINCTION (Roadrunner/Roadracer Records, 1987) Take a glut of Black Sabbath. Add loads and loads of Slayer, combine with the cast of Easy Rider and you have Blessed Death, a 5-piece of bearded, hairy metal-heads from New Jersey that released one of the wildest thrash/speed metal albums in the late 1980’s.

Destined for Extinction was their second album, their debut Kill or be Killed released in 1985 a furious albeit messy affair, heavy on Sabbath and Venom. Destined …, produced by Alex Perialas and recorded live at the famous Pyramid Studio was fresher, crisper and a far more ferocious beast than Kill …; indeed, the album still holds up today amid the Pro-Tools generation.

Introducing the band – Larry Portelli on vocals, guitarists Jeff Anderson and Nick Fiorentino, and identical twin rhythm section Kevin & Chris Powelson on bass and drums respectively – these are the collected individuals who came up with the opening riff to Digital War. It is not *just* a riff – it’s a riff of monstrous proportions, an end-of-the-world riff that churns and grinds its way into the lunatic noise that is their brand of thrash metal. Portelli’s vocals range from deep growling to high pitched screaming – not your average Glam band screeching, I mean SCREAMING – have you ever heard a vocal performance more disturbing than Pain Killer?

Yet it wasn’t all shouting and wailing guitar solos – occasionally the band came back down to earth to let the listener breath; witness the sombre moments of Incoming Wounded, one of the two tracks about the Vietnam War. The track starts with a roar, blood-soaked lyrics decrying the senselessness of young men sent off as cannon fodder: War machine just keeps turning/Incoming wounded/Men are dying on this killing floor/Incoming wounded/Take us out, stop the bleeding/Incoming wounded/Bring us back to feed the war before a deceiving calm descends, the word ‘No’ harmoniously sung over an ominous quiet. And then, naturally, back to the fray, the listener bombarded with noise once more.

In 1987 a lot of thrash bands were moving away from the silliness of Satan and joining their hardcore brethren by writing about contemporary issues, such as the Reagan sponsored Star Wars program and the futility of war. Blessed Death was no exception, and though they were never a Satanic band to begin with their subject matter was based in gritty realism – Death in the Sky, 10,000 Days of Bloodshed and Destruction’s Eve realized this.

Yet regrettably, BD were another faceless band on the Roadrunner label, who signed anything and (seemingly) everything connected with first thrash metal and later death metal. With zero promotion the band were left to their own devices to sell their album; unfortunately, as was the case for many bands if you didn’t sell (and how could you without that all-important record label push and a place on a popular tour?) you were forgotten in favour of more popular/commercial bands and then inevitably dropped. Gotta love the music business.

Nevertheless, for those in the know (and I’m hopeful that some of you reading this will discover Blessed Death for the first time be in awe of them as I first was and still am) they were a highpoint in 1980’s thrash, and Destined … remains a heavy, almost psychedelic slab of insane thrash metal to this day.

- Ken Blackmore

10,000 Days of Bloodshed live: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYkuE7P87jc&feature=related

Digital War, Incoming Wounded & Pray for Death: http://www.mediafire.com/?oza2e7viti2558n _________________ "

I can safely say that any band with a sentence for a name, 6 members or more and carefully combed to the side hairdos are not metal no matter what distortion pedal they have for their guitars."

Chris Reifert, Abscess/Autopsy                    

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Unbelievable--this highly unheralded band has just released a third album, of material recorded in 1991. This is the same bunch who gave us Kill or Be Killed, and Destined for Extinction. This one is called Hour of Pain, and I feel it is their best yet (though I haven't heard D for E much).

Each album has a common thread, but also a definite unique style. The early fare is part thrash, part old school metal, even part proto-death. It deals with lyrically serious topics (no occult or gore garbage), and has kind of a depressive feeling in places, and an angry, militant feeling in others. The second album was pretty much an all out thrash assault. This one is a subtle mixture. The near falsetto (poor man's King Diamond) screams are back, but mixed with vastly improved clean baritone vocals, mixed at other times with a gruff bluesy quality, and even nearing proto-death material in places. The style is still basically thrash, but it is brushed over with doom. There are stylings of power metal, but only of a more strident and darker variety. (Three chord bootstomp). Track Six has a vocal delivery which is tinged with Ozzy. In fact, in places the thrash is slowed down a bit, almost dragging, like someone couldn't quite leave Sabbath out of the picture. In other places, it breaks out into almost Kreator Flag of Hate like thrash intensity, and then crawls back into mid pace chugging. There are subtle variations throughout, but it all holds together very well. There is one acoustic number, which still works because it's gloomy, and here and there in songs there are acoustic breaks. But everything comes off as very natural--it doesn't leave you with that predictable "let's be really mellow/quasi classical and then change gears feeling." In other words, the mellow parts avoid pretense. I even noticed after the lengthy intro to song one, that the atmosphere shifts almost into the kind of thing one finds on some black metal--though in no way is the black metal, except insofar as some early dark thrash stuff is occasionally referenced in black metal discussions. But there is a similar atmosphere, for a brief time.

The gist is, the band has heightened the intense parts, and become even more melodic, part passionate, in the more melodic parts (most noticeable in the vocals). But there is a sense of urgency and seriousness through the record, The production is sharp, and the mid-paced material fairly meaty; it is far above the garage level (but still cool) quality of Kill or Be Killed.

This is a band that deserves more recognition.

You can check out samples of Hour of Pain at CDBaby. http://cdbaby.com/cd/blesseddeath PS Dig the cheesy, yet cool, old school cover. Right on, brother! Does anyone else know this group? I special ordered their debut on cassette back in the mid/late 80s.

graybeardheadbanger

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Hour of Pain CD Review from METAL TO INFINITY:

METAL TO INFINITY

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From Metal-Rules.com :

February 2007 Released: 2006, Blessed Death Productions Rating: 4.0/5

Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen

Now this album really did surprise me way more than my so sweet and innocent (or that´s what I thought as a kid) grandmother in adult orientated shots in the ´50s. I of course am talking about Blessed Death´s rumored, ´previously unreleased´ 3rd album that was recorded by all the original band members back in 1991. Now this album has finally been released by the band members themselves - and I can only say it was about the time.

HOUR OF PAIN, containing of 11 songs (off which 4 songs have been the band´s TERMINAL RAGE demo which they recorded in 1990), is at least a very good album from Blessed Death even if it quite cannot be no match to the band´s two previous albums, KILL OF BE KILLED (´85) and DESTINED FOR EXTINCTION (´87) as those albums are simply the classic era of Blessed Death. The 4 songs have been taken from the TERMINAL RAGE demo, work out really nicely on the album, too. Larry sounds as awesome as a vocalist as he has always done; intense and aggressive just like an ideal Speed/Thrash Metal vocalist should sound like in the first place. The man has got his own very trademark´ish voice (and especially his high-pitched screams), and in my books of admiration and appreciation, he has always belonged to the top league. The songs from that demo have also stayed truthful to their original demo compositions; there´s not much changes in them at all which is great, naturally.

As for the rest of the stuff on HOUR OF PAIN, it´s got less aggression and intensity than the stuff on the T.R. demo which doesn´t automatically mean they wouldn´t deliver the goods well enough. Namely they do, and in fact, they do it really well. The opening track, “Fallen Walls”, sounds epic and bombastic - and its creeping atmosphere truly impresses its listener. At least that´s what it did to me. It´s kinda different stuff what you could expect from Blessed Death, but musically it´s still very pleasing stuff to my untouchable ears anyway. I somehow cannot help praising Larry´s use of a very wide range of his voice as he´s truly the one who gives Blessed Death its very distinctive, well-recognizeable sound, and besides that he´s one of the better Thrash Metal singers out there. Check out the title track “Hour of Pain” off the album to become convinced about his TRUE singing abilities. “Resurrection Earth” kicks old school thrasher´s butt so much too that it almost feels a little crime to like this particular song in question that much. The same words full of passionate and undivided love go to a song called “Atomic Fear”. Blessed Death knew exactly how to thrash... some 16 years ago already.

Too bad this is considered Blessed Death´s last album because with the quality of the songs, I would have loved to see them churning out even more albums after HOUR OF PAIN. To borrow one known Judas Priest song I just wanna say as a last thing that you have to be old enough to know how to thrash because in Blessed Death´s case, it fits like a hit of an iron fist into your belly area. Did you feel it, by the way?

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Hello,

My name is Joe Wyatt. I do a metal show on WEOS FM in Geneva, NY. My friend just sent me a link to the website to alert me that there is a new Blessed Death CD. I can't believe this is actually happening. In the late 80's Blessed Death was one of my all time favorite bands. I played the crap out of "Destined". One of the highlights of the 80's was seeing the band play at the Penny Arcade in Rochester, NY where the crowd was going absolutely crazy and started ripping the ceiling tiles down. The owner of the club came out on stage during one of the breaks between songs and told the crowd to stop or the show was over. This lasted for the beginning of the next song when the singer told everyone to first, stop destroying the ceiling, and then to tear this place apart. Needless to say, the ceiling and fans did not survive. I still tell this story on the air. I also just recently found my autographed ticket stubb from that show. Great times!! Thanks for the memories.

Joe

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The new "Hour Of Pain" record is a fucking monster. Blessed Death was one of the few bands that were truly and honestly authentic. Your sound was completely all your own. Not only that, from start to finish on this record there was not one heavy metal clichet', you know, those little tricks or habits in picking or phrasing that give you away as having studied a certian guitar player or band... nothing, and that is 'really' saying something. There are bands that model themselves after other bands, and there are bands to model yours after. Blessed Death is certainly among the ranks of the latter.I dont know what gear you were using but it is deep. It sounds like you guys were using fucking 12 guage accoustic guitar strings! Talk about digging in. None of that g.i.t. clitty tickling 8 guage arpreggio sweeping bullshit. The attack is balls deep and on a mission. I cant stress strongly enough how 'creative' this record is. Its god damned complicated too! complicated without being pretentious though. not like in the dream theater 'we-know-more-theory-than-you-do-all-praise-our-greatness' way, but in the way a walther machinist would tool the rifling on an mp 38. It is complicated not for embellishment but out of necessity, to express what needs to be said. - and on top of all of that is this clean, fucking sweet engineering job. Fantastic production. Really different direction in the vocal style also. It was unexpected and enjoyable. On a personal note, that intro on fallen walls is damn near orchestral. excellent composition. Phenomenal accomplishment. Well worth the wait.

Matt

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Nick & Blessed Death,

Blessed Death was one of the best metal bands to EVER walk the planet, in my opinion. I used to walk down old country roads in West Virginia and blast "Kill Or Be Killed" over & over. Then I moved to the southside of town when "Destined" came out, and that used to be my fighting tape. We'd all blast it in the car before we'd have to fight off all the dickheads on southside so, we could have the park to scope out or hang with babes. Yep, the good ol' days....

Anyway, even today I still get goosebumps when I listen to those albums. You guys had your own style an a very big FUCK YOU attitude that put SO MANY other bands to shame. Still to this day, many of the young bands could take a strong lesson from you. To try and put thier OWN SOUL into thier music and not just thier fucking record collection. We all take inspiration from other music, but BLESSED DEATH had more to the sound, It possesses a strong sense of your life at that time in the music. THAT is what makes good music, powerful & timeless.

Just really wanted to let you know that I have always loved your guys' music and have always made sure to roll one up, put on the lp, and blast it for those who had no idea who you were & let them be engulfed in the atmosphere you guys would create so wonderfully.

I certianly hope this message finds you guys & your families in good health and happy. Whatever you guys are into now, I certainly hope is bringing you happiness and that there are many more people out there who feel as strongly as I do about the wonderful music of the only & only BLESSED DEATH

All the best Cheers!

Smitty

DEADSEA

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