Midnight – Complete and Total Hell

As far back as the ’80s, Venom’s odes to the fairer sex (see Black Metal‘s ‘Teacher’s Pet’) would often foment a motivation in me to hit fast-forward … but not always. Such simplistic and often misogynistic lyrics feel lazily done at the worst of times, but at the best of times, often with beer in-hand, your intelligent mind will cling to the dark motivations that underlie such sonic scrawlings and allow your Id to gleefully grin. And at this place where socially-inscribed mores end and your adolescence resurfaces, and yes, where you allow yourself to snicker at your own animal longings, Midnight will find and ensnare you. These Cleveland OH-based, hooded Satan-sleaze-revivalists unabashedly instill the desire to rock with the Father Of Lies. Their latest, Complete and Total Hell, a comprehensive collection of splits and Eps that comprise the entirety of their pre-2011 output, keeps you chained to the ground beside the speakers with Devil-soaked party hymns, evoking the days of old for some listeners and (hopefully) the present for younger ears. As with the last year’s debut full-length Satanic Royalty, Complete and Total Hell‘s songs wonderfully reek of the like-Venom lyricism and less-like-Venom-than-Mötörhead riffage, and for those who may enjoy chanting ‘Turn Up The Hell’ while slipping an arm around your debauched other-half, this album will make a welcome addition to your Friday night playlist. Some of our higher-minded metal-seekers may scoff at that notion, and if Midnight’s slightly-refined mashup of First Wave BM/punk/rock ‘n roll didn’t grab you the first time these songs made their rounds in the underground, or when Satanic Royalty dropped last year, this re-release of said tracks won’t either. Still, I implore you to have an open-mind with these ‘Endless Slut’-obsessed non-simpletons; we are complex beings, and that complexity can become tiresome. Sometime you just need to yell ‘White Hot Fire’ , or cooperate in the gang-vocalizations of ‘Screams of Blasphemy’, and Midnight gives you the opportunity to do so. Black Metal, in many cases, provides us with the best examples of Metal as both high and dark art, but art isn’t always what you need. Every once in a while, one needs not just a discussion of sin, but the act of it, and Midnight are the act. Complete and Total Hell performs sin just as Satanic Royality invokesits selfishness, and honestly, if you really want to please Mephistopheles, what actions do you think could make him happier? -Jim

-Hells Headbangers

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~ by cliftonium on September 30, 2012.

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