Your Morning Metal (Welcome to Hell)

Venom, 'Welcome to Hell' (Neat Records, 1981)

The first black metal album, or so it is said. Of course, Venom followed Welcome to Hell with an album actually called Black Metal, so why not? This is the sort of thing that thrilled a generation precisely because it made the self-righteous murmur and fret.

Fight! We will fight right. Living low in a world of our own, destined to live right, fight. We’re taking Hell as our home; burning lives burning, asking me for the mercy of God. Ancient cries crying, acting fast upon the way of the dog. Welcome to Hell! Kill! We will kill death. Masturbating on the deeds we have done, Hell commands, “Death! Kill!” Argue not or feel the death of the sun. Burning lives burning, asking me for the mercy of God. Ancient cries crying, acting fast upon the way of the dog. Welcome to Hell! Leave your souls at His Feet. Kiss the flames, scorn defeat. Die! We won’t die! Live! Our choice of difference is what you’ll never know. Mortal voids live, die, buried deep beneath the fall of the snow. Burning lives burning, asking me for the mercy of God. Ancient cries crying, acting fast upon the way of the dog. Welcome to Hell!

Venom, “Welcome to Hell” (1981)

I mean, really. Imagine being one of those people who freaks out about pop music because you didn’t stop to think before giving your nine year-old a copy of the Purple Rain soundtrack and couldn’t believe your ears when you heard her singing “Darling Nikki”. No, really, that’s how it went. That’s where the PMRC came from. That’s why there are those little black and white Parental Advisory labels. Seriously. I shit thee not.

If you weren’t there, or for (ahem!) some reason can’t remember, yeah, this song terrified them.

And now it’s the stuff of legend. This is a point of origin. This is metal!

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