Its about time this has been re-released,This band formallyknown as Genocide influenced the entire genre, they alongwith Siege basically invented blastbeats. From the openingtrack ‘The Stench of Burning Death’ to the closer ‘ Horrified’This lp rips-Very fast,heavy and with no compromise. Thesecond disc contains demos,live tracks(2) and rarities includingtheir last demo and 7″. This band was creating brutal musicwhen the brutal bands of today were playing with tonka trucks.HIGHLY RECOMMENDED-GET IT.
Japanese pressing includes one bonus track. 2009.
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I bought this album purely because of its reputation and place in metal history (it was a mere £3 in a vinyl shop in Reading), but it very quickly turned into not only one of my favourite grind albums, but one of the best 80s metal records I own. Its production is rough, but not murky or ill-balanced in the slightest. The riffs are easily made out, which is great because most of them are awesome, and Dave Grave’s drumming is hard-hitting, simple and tight as hell. The songs fly by as whirlwinds of intense thrash-grind with noisy Kerry King-esque guitar solos, and the vocals are just pefect for it.
The lyrics are graphic, the cover art is graphic, the approach is completely unsubtle and the album as a whole is a grimy, grinding display of bloody-minded ultra-thrash. It is, then, effectively a perfect early extreme metal record. One to listen to loud, while drinking heavily, thrashing around and talking about zombies. This is the kind of metal that’s meant to be spelled out in capitals with five As and exclamation marks. 20 years have not dented its aggression, they’ve only driven its influence deeper into the world of heavy metal.
Here it is my fellow headbangers, a part of Grindcore and death metal’s beginnings. Little did I know it started in my home state of Michigan and in the same town I work in, Flint! Repulsion started in the early 80s around 84 to be precise. They were under the name Genocide at that time and gave birth to the new extreme of heavy metal. Most people including myself believe Napalm Death are the true fathers of Grindcore, well they did help perfect it I’ll give them that but Repulsion beat them by a year or two. I’m not taking anything away from Napalm I’m a huge fan, their influence in the extreme metal scene cannot be denied, but the tracks on “Horrified” were originally recorded in 86 and the demo versions under the old band name Genocide were recorded in 85. Napalm Death’s “Scum” was released in 87.
What kept Repulsion from getting the recognition they deserved was being a band way ahead of its time. In the early to mid 80s record labels did not easily accept ultra fast and bludgeoning metal with guttural vocals and graphic gore lyrics. In fact Scott Carlson, Repulsion’s vocalist was a friend of Chuck Schuldiner of the band Death and in 1985 Scott teamed up with Chuck and went down to Tampa Florida to merge Genocide and Death together make one band under the Death moniker. This did not work out and Scott moved back to Flint to reform Genocide and Chuck reformed Death with new members. In 86 under the new name of Repulsion the band recorded “Slaughter of the Innocent” with the financial help of Doug Earp the original owner of Wyatt Earp records, which I still shop at regularly to this day. Later after the lack of label interest Repulsion broke up and not until the late 80s early 90s when Death metal gained major ground did Repulsion get a second look. In 1989 Carcass’s Jeff Walker and Bill Steer decided to release Repulsion’s album changed to the title “Horrified” under their off shoot label of Earache records. So basically Repulsion didn’t get a wider listening audience until the much later in the game. Hence most people wouldn’t think this record predates Cannibal Corpse, Morbid Angel, Obituary, and even Entombed’s first albums. The only band that has as long of a history in world of Death metal would be Death. Which in my opinion were the creators of Death metal’s true masterpiece “Scream Bloody Gore”.
Listening to this album, it still as brutal as all get out. The opening track “The Stench of Burning Death” just melts your face off. Other songs titles such as “Decomposed”, “Festering Boils”, and “Maggots in Your Coffin” shred your flesh until nothing is left on your bones. A nice early representation of hard gore lyrics, way before gore death metal veterans Carcass, Cannibal Corpse, and Mortician. None of the songs clock much longer than the 2 minute mark but believe me it’s just enough. One can tell that Repulsion was heavily influenced by bands such as Slayer, Celtic Frost, and Venom, there is tons of homage to these bands in there music, they just turned the notch of brutality a bit further. The bonus disc in this reissue is the true gem here. It contains almost all of Repulsion early demos including their Genocide demos and the songs they recorded when the reunited in 1991, which unfortunately was a short live reunion, a full album was never recorded. All the demos sound great for demos and if you can believe it the Genocide demos are harder than the final versions on “Horrified”. I can’t believe this type extreme music was being played at this time. Think about it when these extreme demos were recorded Bands like Slayer, Metallica, Anthtrax, and Exodus were still young bands. When one thought those bands were as exteme as one could get. Well maybe except for Bathory. Do yourself a favor pick this historical metal album up and blast your eardrums out!
The Forefathers of Grindcore and the blast beat, Repulsion are one of the most important bands that no one’s ever heard of. The song structures are short and straight forward. It sounds like utter chaos caught on tape but it all melds together coherently and powerfully. The drumming is simply groundbreaking since blast beats were simply non-existent before Horrified. The vocals are edgy and the lyrics are offensive. The guitar work simply shreds. I always touted Napalm Death for being the originals in the genre of grindcore but after finally getting my hands on Horrified it is clear that even ND were greatly inspired by this underground masterpiece. Even down to the way Repulsion scrawled their logo, ND imitated! So anyway, this is an absolute must-own for any metal historian or grindcore afficiando, especially remastered and with the additional disc with rarities and demos all at a great price. Best songs: The Stench of Burning Death, Black Breath, Acid Bath and Maggots in your Coffin. Highly Recommended.
As much as I love Napalm Death and the like, it’s really these guys who are the true innovators and kings of grind. They took their love for the best of punk (Discharge, DRI) and the best of extreme metal (Slayer, Celtic Frost, and Slaughter) to create a musical genre that would knock the metal underground on it’s f*cking *ss. Afterall it’s these guys who were the first to do it and the one’s who invented the BLAST BEAT! But what will really catch a metal aficionado’s fancy are the f*cking riffs. See folks the problem sometimes in grindcore (like on Scum) is that sometimes the band has the desire to be as extreme as possible that the forget the value of the riff but the boys of Repulsion never ever forgot that and that’s what I praise them the most for. They even throw in some solos which were definitely the Slayer-esque bunny-in-a-blender style and it sounds great. What makes the riffs so good are the inherent catchiness of them despite their uncompromising rawness. Some great examples of this would be Radiation Sickness, Maggots In Your Coffin, and Black Breath. I dare you to listen to “Maggots” and not do a frenzied headbang while shouting along with the catchy chorus. What’s amazing about Black Breath is that it’s one of the slowest grind songs ever but one of the best!
Of course what’s a Horrified review without mentioning it’s massive influence. This has to be one of the most ripped-off extreme metal albums I’ve ever heard. I mean even the first time I listened to this I was like “dude there’s a Carcass riff! Wait there’s ND riff! There’s another!” and so on and so on. But one of the biggest culprits are Entombed of all people. It was because of Repulsion they were able to create the almighty Left Hand Path. Just to push this point further here’s some specific examples- listen to the riff in Festering Boils then listen to Carcass’s Reek of Putrefaction (the song), the beginning of “Bodily Dismemberment” is EXACTLY the same as the beginning of the title track on Left Hand Path, I don’t blame them though since Repulsion had a real knack for writing some of the sickest intro riffs ever. I could go on but you get my drift.
What also stands out here are the lyrics, yes for today’s standards they’re not too intimidating but back then they were pretty insane, perfectly blending a touch of cartoony/chessiness and realism in them. The band themselves even stated that they were purely for humor only and they certainly add a fun element to the album. Oh I can’t forget the vocals, they’re very raw and raspy, quite unique for grindcore.
In a nutshell the band was trying to be over the top in every aspect and they’re perhaps the one band to encompass everything that’s “over the top” and still make a brilliant album. And to imagine these were just four crazy kids (from Michigan of all places!) who were just willing to be a tad more adventurous than everyone else and look what happened. This is of course mandatory purchase for extreme metal fans as this is one of the best grind albums ever, it deserves all the praise it gets. It’s also perfect for people justing getting into grindcore. However, if I had just one complaint about this it would be the production which does sound sweet even if the whole thing is of “demo” quality, but judging from ND’s sick cover of “Maggots” I know this would sound even BETTER if it had better production and then I’d probably think this was the best record ever made. I’m still giving this a high 96% though.
Everyone seems to have a different set of highlights and here’s mine – Radiation Sickness, Splattered Cadavers, Six Feet Under, Maggots In Your Coffin, and my fave Black Breath.