Atrocity: “Blue Blood” (1989)

A fistful of death metal to the face featuring three killer songs.

Kronomyth 0.1: Aristocratrocity.

Ah, what better way to celebrate the king’s coronation than Atrocity’s debut single, Blue Blood? The German death metal band’s opening salvo on Nuclear Blast Records is an auspicious debut, setting the stage for their first full-length album, Hallucinations. Alexander Krulle and Mattias Röderer tear down the veil to reveal the bloody hands of the puppetmaster as we speed headlong into our own apocalypse. Or something like that. I find most death metal can be described by just throwing a few random, sinister words together (e.g., shards of satanic destruction, the bloody bowels of our own morbid dystopia, ad infernum).

If you’re wondering why anyone would listen to death metal, I blame Black Sabbath. They’re kind of the gateway drug to death metal. Once you’ve heard the groove in Tony Iommi’s guitar, it’s impossible to unhear it. And, then, it’s impossible not to hear and dig the groove in the dual-guitar riffs of Anthrax, Atrocity, and on and on into the endless black corridors of the abyss. Not that I’m putting Atrocity on the same pedestal as Anthrax quite yet, but the band clearly stands out from the countless heavy metal minions. Nuclear Blast and Roadrunner had a great ear for talent; you really can’t go wrong buying anything on either label.

The opening “Blue Blood” attacks the idea of wealth and privilege by birth. Krulle doesn’t sing the lyrics; he vomits them forth in a putrid stream of guttural sounds. When the Fire Burns Over the Sea pictures the apocalypse as Krulle reads the lyrics in a dreamlike, deathlike state. The German accent is a bit of a liability to American ears, but it’s a small sin easily overlooked in the wake of the apocalyptic wave that represents the music. The band’s too-brief debut ends with Humans Lost Humanity, ushering in the chaos to come as their final act.

Original 7-inch single version

A1. Blue Blood
B1. When the Fire Burns Over the Sea
B2. Humans Lost Humanity

All songs written by Matze and Krulle.

The Players

Krulle (Alexander Krull) (vocals), Frank (Frank Nodel) (guitar), Matze (Mathias Röderer) (guitar), Migge (Michael Schwartz) (drums), Rene (René Tometschek) (bass). Produced by Atrocity; mixed by Stefan and Atrocity.

The Pictures

Covert art by Krulle (thanx to Steffen, Stefan, Holger). Photos by Heiko.

The Plastic

Released on blue vinyl and black vinyl 7-inch single in 1989 in Germany (Nuclear Blast, NB 023) with picture sleeve.

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