Hard Luck Bar
Jan 10 2016
The newly formed group Venom Inc represent the reunion of the late 80's / early 90's line-up pf Newcastle thrash / black metal pioneers Venom. Comprised of original members Jeff "Mantas" Dunn on guitar and drummer Tony "Abaddon" Bray along with front-man Anthony "Demolition Man" Dolan, this trio were responsible for the Venom albums Prime Evil(1989), Temples Of Ice (1991) and The Waste Lands (1992) after founding bassist / lead vocalist Conrad "Cronos" Lant left the group to form his own solo band Cronos.
Now Mantas, Abbadon and Demolition Man are back and in the middle of a January twenty one date North American tour (don't worry, Cronos is out there too playing with his latest line-up of Venom who released a new album From The Very Depths in January of 2015). Moved from the Danforth Music Hall to the Hard Luck Bar made for a much more intimate if no less aggressive show.
Making their Toronto debut, Venom Inc kicked things off with the title track from 1989's Prime Evil then jumped headfirst into a blazing version of the 1983 non-album single "Die Hard". Dolan acquainted himself well with the crowd, complimenting their typically polite Canadian demeanor and sharing that he actually used to live in Canada . For the 1982 song "Buried Alive" the vocalist added dramatic facial expressions to give his performance extra intensity.
A heaving "1,000 Days Of Sodom" was a set highlight while other classic Venom numbers performed included "Live Like An Angel", "Warhead", "Seven Gates Of Hell" and "Sons Of Satan". The 1982 single "Blood Lust" benefited from furious double bass drumming from Abaddon.
The show winded up with the brutal one-two punch of the title tracks from the original band's first two albums Welcome To Hell (1981) and Black Metal (1982) before finishing with the crowd rousing cruncher "Countess Bathory"
The evening wasn't entirely based on brutality though, after the concert was finished Abaddon came out from the backstage area happily chatting with fans and signing vinyl copies of old Venom albums.