Home » SODOM – “1982” (2023, EP)

SODOM – “1982” (2023, EP)

by MythofRock

Lately, Sodom have been bombarding us with several EPs to keep us warm. Irrespective of the reasons that dictate these releases (whether it’s Steamhammer’s marketing purposes or the band’s mood for new compositions, or both), they’re an ideal opportunity for selective, short doses of good old thrash by a band that always stay loyal to themselves and the audience. This time, Sodom decided to pay tribute to their very early days, when three rebellious teenagers entered a small rehearsal room in the Altenessen industrial district to record their first demos.

As such, in “1982”, you won’t find new material except a remix of the self-titled single, just one year after its release (was that necessary?) and four re-recordings of classic songs, performed by Sodom’s current line-up: “Witching Metal” from the homonymous 1983’s demo cassette (also found in the “Victims of Death” demo and “In the Sign of Evil” EP), “Victims of Death” and “Let’s Fight in the Darkness of Hell” from 1984’s “Victims of Death” demo, and “Equinox” from 1986’s “Obsessed by Cruelty” debut album. These songs, except for “Equinox”, were also available as part of the CD version of 2022’s anniversary boxset (“40 Years at War – The Greatest Hell of Sodom”). Hence, their standalone release serves exclusively Steamhammer’s orientation to Sodom’s fervent collectors.

“1982” offers the band’s raw, dirty sound, enhanced by Blackfire’s and Segatz’s dual guitar attack. The typical self-titled introductory song reeks of the familiar Sodomic essence, adhering perfectly to the band’s old-school principles with an addictive mid-tempo pattern, followed by a much-expected outburst. However, the real temptation occurs later, when the above-mentioned classic tracks are stripped of their initial sound, becoming audible (I refer to the demo versions). Sodom didn’t change song structures; they just perform given ideas savagely and with full force.

What comments should someone make about songs that have already made history? The memorable, hyper-addictive, punkish thrash of “Witching Metal” and “Victims of Death”, along with the merciless riff of “Let’s Fight in the Darkness of Hell”, further emphasized by a much-envied guitar duo, are irresistible, unleashing huge quantities of energy. The concluding violent “Equinox” transports you back to the invincible spirit of the 80s. The transition is executed seamlessly; Angelipper’s dirty bass and sick, powerful vocal performance take care of this, although the proto-black feeling of the original version is absent…

Sodom skillfully bring their primitive thrash/speed/punk attitude and teenage flame into the present, celebrating all these years of creativity and consistent discography. Certainly, it’s a (guilty) pleasure to hear these archaic hymns with a proper sound; just make a comparison with the respective, barely audible demo versions when (let’s be honest) there wasn’t any production at all…

Now, your stance on “1982” depends on your perceptions about how bands should treat their past. If you believe that roots should remain underground, “unmolested” by revisits and current productions, then certainly this EP isn’t for you. On the contrary, your tolerance regarding the processing of early forms under the current scope (irrespective of what that “scope” might mean) ensures your absolute and complete amusement offered by “1982”. No matter what you think about that issue, Sodom are still bone crushers and ass kickers (especially on stage).

♦ 8/10

Alex Nikolaidis

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