Midnight – Complete And Total Fucking Midnight Review

Originally written by Nin Chan

WUARGHHHH THIS BAND RULES!!!!! I had never even HEARD of these bastards till some rabid metalhead mentioned them on the Barbarian Wrath message board, and having been blown away by the mp3 offered on the Outlaw Recordings site, proceeded to place an order for this disc with swiftness. Before I get this review going in earnest, I believe it would be crucial to issue a disclaimer for those of you who have some inexplicable aversion to raw, drunken, sloppy, sickeningly orthodox HEAVY METAL- this is NOT for you, go bark up some other (portentous pseudointellectual goth shit) tree. For those of you into the truly barbaric, vomit-stained sounds of Motörhead, Venom, Discharge, Hellhammer, early D.R.I., Carnivore…I cannot but offer this my very, very highest recommendations!

Apparently, this is a side-project borne of the inimitable Jamie, frontman of similarly-minded scene veterans Boulder, yet somehow Midnight manage to eclipse even the boisterous stylings of said band. The closest parallels one could draw to contemporary bands would probably be to New York’s Villains, Finland’s Wizzard/Hellbox and Delaware’s Chemikiller, all of whom exude the same rabid, alcohol-imbibed feel. Venom well and truly is the overriding influence here- the drumming is punchy and oozing, yet full of swing and groove, there are one or two facemelting solos in EVERY song and the vocals are gruffly barked with reckless Cronos abandon (Abbadon? Hahaha). Hellhammer is also a primary point of reference here- the rudimentary plodding kick/snare pattern and primal riffing of “Unholy and Rotten” is positively PREGNANT with the influence of Thomas Gabriel and Martin Ain, though the midsection breakdown and resulting solo inserts more a Venom/Motörhead feel to the fray.Yet, as haphazardly referential as Midnight are, there is so much irresistible spirit and irrepressible energy contained within these tracks, so much ingenuity and so much spirit that they positively EXPLODE with vibrancy and color.

Everything about this record is so spontaneous- there is none of the elaborately orchestrated contrivance of Three Inches Of Blood or the schlock-infested posturing of Gehennah or Swordmaster, the booklet isn’t jammed with satirical pictures of patch-adorned jean jackets or inebriated women (well, okay, two rather plus-sized women, that’s it, though!). There is no pretension or ‘’retro’’ bullshit here, this is straight ahead, white hot, crust-infused heavy metal in its very purest incarnation, interpreted by metalheads, FOR metalheads. I defy you to resist the lost Morbid Tales track that is “Long Live Death” (more than a nod towards Tom’s fascination with morbidity, maybe?), the blistering “White Hot Fire” (NAME THAT RIFF!), the intoxicated raunch of “Lord In Chairs”, the mini “At War With Satan” that is “Strike Of Midnight”, a feverish collage of obscene distortion and sporadic, odd percussion.

Though this compendium culls tracks from across different sessions, the sound quality is uniformly great, reinforcing the spontaneity and free-flowing live feel of the disc. The bass is omnipresent in the mix, the guitar tone is frighteningly Hellhammer-esque, the drums sound thunderous yet organic, musical and full. No studio wizardry here, this is a disarmingly honest recording that is so believable it has me anxious to see the band live, for it truly emulates the unrehearsed, unorchestrated feel of a live performance. This is really, really, really good, and I am already clamorous to hear MORE!!! Real music for real people…buy or die!

Posted by Old Guard

The retired elite of LastRites/MetalReview.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.