VENGEANCE RISING - Destruction Comes (Limited Run Vinyl)
The year was 1991, and word was on the street that a new Vengeance Rising album was on it's way. Of course, many of us wondered what it would sound like though, because we knew that the band members who performed on the previous two releases (Human Sacrifice and Once Dead) had all left the band, leaving vocalist Roger Martinez as the only original member left to move on with this new release. And while we understood the drums were being handled by Christ Hyde from Deliverance, the rest of the instrumentation was being handled by Roger alone (though lead guitar work was handled by Derek Sean).
Well, the exciting day arrived when we had the product in hand. Oddly, the CD had a sticker covering part of the cover; a sticker that was on the outer shrink-wrap. What was it covering? Remember, these were the days before the internet, so we had not seen any sneak previews of the cover art or anything ahead of time. So once we ripped open the packaging (being sure to not mess up the sticker of course), we saw the half annihilated body of the muscle man on the sticker. So cool!
Of course the sticker was placed there because the cover was much too gnarly to be seen on the shelves of any Christian book store, so it had to be covered (the label also did a black shrink-wrap cover for the Mortification album released that same year).
Once I got the music playing a few things were immediately noticeable. The sound was noticeably different as expected with the absence of the original band. The songs were more basic, just straight forward riffing with much less dynamics in structure and playing style. Plus, the production was much more noisy and tinny.
Overall, everything was very distorted — way too distorted. It was a fuzzy wall of noise with no real clarity or distinction in the guitar riffing. The vocals were as expected, but musically, it was not to my liking, but I pushed on.
After multiple listens, it began to grow on me a bit more. Well, the lyrical patterns did as I got more familiar with them, but the underlying music was still quite noisy. The whole release just never sat well with me sound-wise. Lyrically, yes, but musically, it just sounded like the guitars were too raw and under produced — almost demo quality in tone and presentation. Roger did put together a touring band after recording the album, and they appear in the video track released for "Before the Time."
Fast forward 28 years, and here we have the first release of this album onto vinyl, as part of the Limited Run Vinyl series being produced between Roxx Records, Retroactive Records, Girder Music and No Life Til Metal Records. I was excited to see how a vinyl release would affect my feelings for this album, knowing it should be a different sound in some way.
The needle drops, and five songs later I am ready to flip to side B, but cannot help but be struck with my first impression of this release on vinyl. The listening experience was drastically different from my memories. Is the difference strictly due to the remastered vinyl format though? I don't think so. You see, in the past 20+ years, the aggressiveness of music has gradually changed, getting more loud, more raw, more distorted, and even more noisy.
So now, all of these years later, and with many more hours listening to some of this more extreme music under my belt, revisiting this once "noisy" album on vinyl feels total new, yet still totally familiar with memories of the past. There is a new life added with the extended range of sound found on vinyl for sure, as it gives us a bit more bottom end to offset some of the tinny distortion and production. But now, surely influenced by the changes in the musical spectrum and my musical "ear" in general, in comparison to modern black and death metal, this album is a vision of clarity.
The first two releases are still my favorite, and I still need them on vinyl, but I must admit, with this vinyl release, Destruction Comes has now moved way up on the favorable scale for me. Maybe they were ahead of their time and it took my ears a few more years to catch up? Who knows for sure. All I can say is, I am reliving the past in a new way, and I am loving it. While nowhere near as aggressive as modern music can be, this is heavy enough that all lovers of classic thrash should eat it up. I sure am — and at extreme volume.
And yes, they included an reproduction of the original sticker too (pictured above), separate and unattached from the packaging, which was a nice bonus.
Limited One-Time Vinyl Pressing
200 Units and its gone!
Dark Orange Marbled Swirl color
1. You Can't Stop It (5:13)
2. The Rising (5:11) 3. Before the Time (2:57) 4. The Sword (3:15)
5. He don't own nothing (3:07)
6. Countless Corpses (5:31) 7. Thanatos (5:04) 8. You Will Bow (4:09) 9. Hyde Under Pressure (1:08) 10. Raegoul (6:51)