Basement Torture Killings – Lessons In Murder
Bizarre Leprous Productions
Release Date: 22/05/2020
Running Time: 33.45
Review by Dark Juan
Ah, the sheer joy of murder. That release you get when the first jet of arterial blood sprays your face and then the completion you feel when you watch the light and the terror fade from the eyes of your victim, mainly because they have refused to be turned on to the Left Hand Path and away from their False Prophet and his strange dad in the clouds. The One Who Walks Backwards requires nothing more but adulation and the occasional blood sacrifice, which isn’t too much to ask, is it? Children are a burden anyway. Turn towards where all the cool kids are going and embrace Shaitan and piss off all manner of upstanding, elderly Christian neighbours! If you do it with the prodigious power of Basement Torture Killings played at a similar volume to a Saturn V rocket lifting off then it will be entirely to your credit when you take a trip downstairs and the Horny Old One is assigning you your own personal Hell. Which in my case would be no virgins, No alcohol, endless boy bands and K-Pop (and FUCKING BABYMETAL! WHO THE FUCK THINKS BABYMETAL ARE A GOOD IDEA UNLESS YOU HAVE STRANGE AND DISGUSTING IDEAS ABOUT TINY, PSEUDO TEENAGE JAPANESE GIRLS?!? Oh, wait…) and meat dishes all about the place. Delicious, aromatic viands that I can’t eat because animal flesh does not pass my lips.
Basement Torture Killings (for the rest of this review will be being referred to as BTK because I am fucking lazy. Just realised they share the same initials as good old neighbourhood stalwart and dedicated family man Dennis Rader) hail from that bastion of good taste, manners and politeness known as the UK and already I am a fan simply because of Beryl. Now there’s a lass after my own depraved black heart if there ever was one. An acid growling lady who’s just my type – deranged, homicidal and covered in gore up to the armpits. In fact, so far I love the lot of the demented fuckers – Tarquin is an accomplished death metal guitarist and appears to have three arms, such is the speed of his playing. Dr. Krause clearly has time on his hands after exploratory surgery to hit the bass like a man possessed and The Faceless Killer is clearly an insane mutant with many more limbs than are required for a normal life. All are absolutely batshit crazy and Dark Juan desperately wants them to be his new best friends as we all share similar interests…
The music on this record is classic splattercore, a la Autopsy and early Carcass, complete with the warped sense of humour that runs through every Carcass release. It’s also nearly as brutal as The Berzerker. I said nearly. Nothing can touch the brutality of The Berzerker’s debut record. However, just the thought of a BTK and The Berzerker tour has given me butterflies in my tummy and sent a tumescent explosion of sex wee clear out of the window of Dark Juan Terrace, much to the chagrin of my neighbour Leon and his dog, Shadow. Shadow seems less concerned than Leon. Call the underwear ambulance, Dark Juan has utterly fucked another pair of pants.
Now, you are all no doubt aware that I like a bit of death metal and splattercore because I incessantly bang on about how amazing Carcass are and BTK are most worthy contenders for the throne. Lessons In Murder is a fucking terrific classic DM record. It ticks all the boxes and I even like the slightly ropey production because it lends itself better to the music than the Morrisound clone jobs that most DM bands use. My only real complaints are that the cymbals are too high in the mix and the bass is extremely quiet. I love Beryl’s vocal style, although she is more proficient at the more highly pitched Jeff Walker-esque phrases, but she is a very good DM vocalist and the lyrics are dark as fuck too. We have murder, rape, torture, snuff and all other kinds of things that make me want to show the Christian virgins of the parish just what damnation feels like. The guitar phrasing of a number of the songs are very Cannibal Corpse like but it all still sounds fresh as fuck because it is played with passion, and dare I even say that there are a couple of bits where melody creeps in and adds a whole new dimension to the horror. Otherwise, the use of more crunchy guitar tones than usual for the genre lean the whole aesthetic more towards Carcass than the American classic DM bands like Morbid Angel and Death.
The songs are all short, sharp and utterly lethal blasts. If you want something to drive down a late-night road to, don’t listen to BTK. You’ll be picking up the most unfortunate whores at truck stops and butchering them to the point of not being recognised as a human being. Not good when you are delivering a load of bathroom ceramics to Motherwell. The whole record clocks in at a speedy 33 minutes long and this is a Very Good Thing because death metal should always be the aural equivalent of several sharp and fast stabs to the gut with a serrated knife. Each song starts with a small vignette from serial killer interviews or from educational films about murder before proceeding to remove your face, trample it into the dirt and then stamp on the raw flesh left attached to your skull with fucking big ass hobnailed combat boots. This is death metal with the pretension fucked right off. BTK exist for one reason, and that’s to kill each and every last motherfucker in the room with them, which will harm merchandise sales, but if it makes Beryl happy then I’m down with it.
I can’t pick a standout song because I have been transported back to my happy teenage days of discovering new levels of brutal music and how it made me feel happy when I was dreaming of eviscerating innocent religious folk on their own altars. Basement Torture Killings remind me of why metal is great – the simple happiness of listening to people just like you playing their hearts out and just living it, you know? Every song is crisp and razor sharp and deadly in the extreme. There should be warning signs around it and an exclusion zone. It’s infectious, heavier than a pair of plutonium underpants, faster than an airline asking for a bailout and so much fun it hurts my poor, blackened heart. I love BTK. I really do. A future classic death metal/ grindcore record.
The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System has had to temporarily change from Blood Splats to Blood Gallons as splats just don’t seem to cut it right now. It also recommends this record to your attention if you are one of the young, new neophytes to the Protectorate Of The Faith because by God it will have your parents worrying about you and just what you get up to in the churchyard at night, you filthy little perverts. 10/10 for the most fun I have had with my clothes on in ages. Now to get Beryl out of hers…. Be seeing you!
01. Armchair Psycho Or Pure Predator (A literal description of the fans of BTK.)
02. The Three Step Hit Formula (I did a four-step once. That was at the Grand Hotel in Llandudno before it set on fire. I fainted dead away. Then my appendix exploded, and I had to have it out in Gwynedd Hospital. It’s a salutary experience waking up in a foreign country’s hospital with Pobol Y Cwm on the TV and a small, wiry and clearly homosexual nurse with a gold tooth called Dafydd asking whether you are OK… Er, yeah, what the fuck’s going on?)
03. DIY Store Murder Kit
04. Exercising Your Dominance (Dark Juan has no trouble with this.)
05. Erotophonophilia (Lust Murder) (Sexual arousal or gratification contingent on the death of a human being, fact fans! Otherwise known as a normal Saturday night around Halifax. Especially around the back of The Acca…)
06. Public Displays of Aggression (Generally giro day in Aldi when there are only two bottles of white cider left.)
08. Resolving The Body Problem (Just don’t call Dyno-Rod.)
09. The Pen Is Mightier Than Another Splayed Corpse (It is not mightier than the sword, otherwise I’d be spending the rest of my days in chokey.)
10. Objectification (Something Dark Juan DOES NOT do…. No, fuck off. I don’t.)
11. The League Of Extraordinary Killers (I SOOOOOOO hope this is a thing and they are taking applications for membership. People are always on at me to extend my circle of friends.)
Beryl – Horrific Goratory Of Perverse Verse
Tarquin – Hideous Sermon & Manipulator Of Ripped Sinews
Dr. Krause – Low End Bowel Rupture
The Faceless Killer – Beater Of Human Skins
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