Posts Tagged ‘Portrait’

covenEvery year, I try to find new and exciting albums to cover while we do Eddie’s 31 Days of Halloween and I think I found one. I was looking on the world wide web when I came across the term Occult Rock and of course I was curious and so I clicked on it. Apparently there was a band that was Satanic before Black Sabbath could ever be considered that and this band was open about it on their music. The band that I am talking about is  Chicago’s Coven, a band that was made up of Jinx Dawson (Vocals), Jim Donlinger (Guitar), Jim Nyeholt, John Hobbs, and Rick Durrett (Organ, Piano, Keys), Alan Estes and Oz Osborne (Bass), and Steve Ross (Drums) would release their debut album Witchcraft Destroys Minds & Reaps Souls in 1969. According to metal and rock historians and fans, they are recognized as the first band to put up the devil horns as was recognized by the album which was produced by Bill Traut. Jim Donlinger whose real name was James Vincent (He was in another band at the time and he was asked to write songs for this by Traut) talked about the album and the process and said, “Bill brought me a large box full of books about witchcraft and related subjects. He told me to read them and start writing some songs … Sometime before the sun came up, I had completely written all the material requested of me for the entire album … Coven also contributed four songs to the project.”

coven back1. Black Sabbath– Not to be confused with the Black Sabbath titular track, this track has more of as psychedelic light rock feel to it as Jinx struts her stuff vocally. a track aboutr witches who sacrifice to the dark prince. 4/5

2. White Witch Of Rosehall– a kind of upbeat tempo track that could be telling the story of a haunting that happened in Jamaica. The story is about the spirit of Annie Palmer who haunts Rose Hall. 4/5

3. Coven in Charing Cross– an interesting track that even features chanting done by the members of the band as they talk about a cult who practices the occult. 4/5

4. For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge– is the what the F word means. The origin of the word f**k in Ireland meant that you were arrested “For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge”. I loved the use of the organs in this track, a fun track overall. 4.5/5

5. Pact with Lucifer– literally a track about a farmer who sold his soul to the devil so that he could get fortune and now the devil has come to collect. 4/5

coven vinyl.jpg6. Choke, Thirst, Die– This must be a track about seances or trying to resurrect the dead otherwise I have no idea. 4/5

7. Wicked Woman– a track about a woman who is devilish and she’ll be the death of you if you’re not careful. 4/5

8. Dignitaries of Hell– an interesting track about all of the demons that accompany Satan in hell as they are all Dignitaries of Hell. 4/5

9. Portrait– an interesting song about a portrait and the power that it has over people who come across it. 4/5

10. Satanic Mass– It is literally what it is, the album ends with a Satanic mass. 4/5

My Final Thoughts– The way the world worked in 1969, this was definitely one of the ballsiest releases of it’s time. You weren’t going to get mainstream fame and success with this albuym, but you definitely did somewhat get infamy with it. I am going to give the album 4 stars out of five for a final grade.

satellite-frontOne of the premier bands to ever come out of the Nu-Metal scene has always been the very underrated Christian Nu-Metal group P.O.D. (Payable On Death). This group from San Diego, California had been cutting their teeth on the scene for a little while before they gained recognition for the album The Fundamental Elements of Southtown. But the album that helped define the band’s fourth album Satellite which came out on September 11, 2001. The album once again featured Sonny Sandoval (Vocals), Marcos Curiel (Guitars), Traa Daniels (Bass), and Wuv Bernardo (Drums) while the album was produced by Howard Benson and P.O.D.. Despite the idea of the album coming out on the worst day in American History, the album did very well for the band as it peaked at number six on the Billboard Top 200 charts as it sold over 133,000 copies in the first week and it spent five straight weeks in the top 10. The album sold over seven million records worldwide (3 million in the US) and it placed at 137 on Billboards Top 200 albums of the decade (2000-2009). The album also had three different songs nominated for a Grammy despite not winning any of them and it shows you how amazing the record was.

51huIfSkhJL1. Set It Off– A kick ass way to kick off the album with a track that is so full of energy when it needs and melodic when it needs to be as well. The track is all about getting up and realizing that you have to stick up for yourself and be proud. 5/5

2. Alive– The first track released off the album that helped sooth times during 9/11 in a track that is all about knowing that life is so beautiful that we are lucky to be alive. The track was nominated for a Grammy for Bets Hard Rock Performance in 2002. 5/5

3. Boom– Another high octane, high energy track that bumps in this track that is all about the band’s rise from nothing to the top. 5/5

4. Youth Of A Nation– A very dark and melodic track that was inspired by a tragedy. The band was on their way to rehearsal when they were stuck in traffic. They found out the reason was because their was a school shooting and after the album’s release was delayed they wrote this track. The track was nominated for a Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance in 2003. 5/5

5. Celestial– a very cool instrumental from the band that segways nicely into the next track. 5/5

6. Satellite– a very cool and inspirational track from the band that is all about God and how he looks down and watches us. It’s like saying to yourself that you know things are good because God is always watching over me. 5/5

7. Ridiculous– a rock track with a more reggae feel to it and that could be because the track features Jamaican reggae artist Eek-a-Mouse. 4.5/5

satellite-4ee2821eb12cd8. The Messenjah-a cool track that is all about how P.O.D. have established that they will always speak the word of Jah no matter what until death so they are the messenjahs. 4.5/5

9. Guitarras de Amor– The track title translates to guitars of love and this is another instrumental track that blends some Latin guitar playing into it. 5/5

10. Anything Right– a very melodic track from the band that features Christian Lindskog of Swedish group Blindside. The verses are very melodic, but the chorus is intense as Sonny claims that no matter what he does, he an’t do anything right. I think the track is basically saying we should show more love because not everyone is like us. 4.5/5

11. Ghetto– Another melodic track that has a lot of hope for the world in it’s lyrics as Sonny believes that the world believes in love. It’s basically preaching that love is basically the answer. 4.5/5

12. Masterpiece Conspiracy– an OK track on the album that is all about how this band is a family and that everything they have they have worked for so no one outside the circle can claim a slice. 4/5

13. Without Jah, Nothin– an in your face punk style track (with a little reggae mixed in too) that features HR of Bad Brains on the track whose lyrics basically says that nothing good comes out of this world with out God. 4/5

14. Thinking About Forever– a track that is semi acoustic in this song that Sonny wrote for his mother who passed away. He hopes that she is proud of him. 4.5/5

15. Portrait– The last track on the album that was nominated for a Grammy for Best Metal Performance in 2003. The track is a metal track with a little bit of a punk feel to it that talks about how people have taken a beautiful thing like God and they have distorted his teachings and who he is. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– This at the time was the last album that Marcos would be on with the band until 2008’s When Angels & Serpents Dance. This was one heck of a follow up to Fundamental…, but it set the standard for the band moving forward that they have had to top. These are literally some of the nicest guys in the business which is why I love this band and have a lot of respect for them. So, I am going to give this album 4.8 stars out of five for a final grade.