So you ever wonder what it would be like if, Mayhem – yes THAT Mayhem – covered classic punk bands like The Ramones, Discharge and Dead Kennedys? Well, guess what… wonder no more. Norway’s black metal legends, Mayhem. deliver a crushing EP just in time to cool off the summer swelter.
How did this all come about?
According to bassist Necrobutcher:
“When we recorded the drums for Daemon (the most recent Mayhem LP), we suddenly had three to four days of extra studio time. Hellhammer recorded his stuff faster than we had planned, so we picked out a bunch of covers to record, just to have something for later use. It turns out that we made the right move, as we didn’t want to start on new songs until the Daemon album tour was finished.”
Guitarist, Ghul, when asked about the EP manifestation, tells us:
“I think it was really about enjoying playing, the way you do when you first get into bands. Playing covers especially, it’s all about the pure buzz of playing together. We often find ourselves messing around with cover songs at rehearsals and soundchecks, so it was good to record some and document that aspect of us as a band. The ‘new’ songs were all part of the same writing process for Daemon, but didn’t fit into the overall vision of the album. They are very much supplemental to the album.”
What we have then are some Daemon-type tracks and then some Mayhem tributes to hardcore punk.
Songs like “Voces Ab Alta” clearly have that Daemon sound and vibe to them.
And then later into the record we get to the punk stuff. These songs feature former vocalists Maniac and Billy Messiah. They talk about their collaborations in this video:
You might be wondering – just how does a Ramones song sound performed by a band like Mayhem? Well, quite honestly, it’s got the trademark Ramones simplicity and catchiness with a Norwegian edge to it. Mayhem stays pretty close to originals in terms of the covers by with an unmistakable tone, and perhaps, a bit more clarity in the drum tracks. My favorite cover? Probably “In Defense of our Future.” The guitar and the solo really elevates the track.
Atavistic Black Disorder/Kommando releases on Century Media records on July 9, 2021.
You can order the vinyl from Century Media here.