While taking down my notes for the Devil’s Punchbowl series, I found myself exploring my old CD collection for bands I had forgotten; bands that might inspire the evil in these whiskies to fully manifest while I wrote.
Looking for the darkest band I could find, my first stop was Type O Negative. After a few minutes, I felt like they were too obvious a choice. Plus, I had too much fun at Type O shows. Pete Steel was a legend, but staple my hand to my forehead for me, Type O just wasn’t evil enough.
On through the next most obvious choices, I poured over Skinny Puppy. I forgot they were Canadian. Too polite. Nine Inch Nails? Despite an awesome sweet spot between their second and third albums, too commercial. GG Allin? Well, he was certainly terrible enough musically, but I’m not sure shoving a banana up your ass and playing with your poop on stage is evil so much as crazy. Lonestar? Just kidding… I don’t own a Lonestar CD.
How about King 810? They’re from Flint Michigan. That’s pretty brutal. The video for their song Killem All is pretty gruesome, too, and leaves me with an empty feeling inside. So far so good. After a few minutes though, I feel like they were just screaming over watered down Pantera riffs, and let’s never forget how Pantera started.
Eventually, I found myself skipping through Throbbing Gristle tracks. The complete chaos and abject terror songs like We Hate You (Little Girls) dump into your soul was inspiring enough. I was definitely getting closer, but I almost felt like Throbbing Gristle was too nerdy an outfit to be the most evil one I could find. Also, I couldn’t really concentrate while it was playing.
Then I stumbled on the last stack of CD’s I listened to; the ones I never shuffled back into their respective spots, rather left at the end of the collection in a pile of sloth. The last CD in the stack was perfect. A band so brutal that the lead singer, stage named Dead, slit his wrists and throat before shooting himself in the face with a shotgun. Ever the thoughtful gent, and realizing the messy affair he was about to leave behind in his band mates’ home, he made sure to leave a note. It began with a casual “Excuse the blood…”. Now that’s dark, but it gets worse.
The guitarist who found the body first, Eronymous, ran out to the store for a disposable camera so he could stage some pictures with the body before alerting authorities. One of the pictures became the cover of a concert bootleg. Eronymous also kept a few pieces of Dead’s skull and made jewelry out of them to give to other bands he liked.
After that, Eronymous and bassist Varg Vikernes burned down a few churches together for, I dunno, fun? Varg Vikernes would later stab Eronymous to death outside his home before going to prison for the arson and murder.
So, the band was definitely evil enough. The music was simple enough, without much skill or critical thinking involved. Plus, it was a pioneering force in the most paradoxically evil and hilarious genre of all… Norwegian Black Metal. Yes. This was definitely it. The whole package. Mayhem.
In deference, I have written my notes for the second chapter using lyrics from their song Freezing Moon. Feel free to follow the link above if you want to sing along.
Freezing Moon – by Mayhem with amendments by HowToDrinkWhisky.com in bold
Everything here is
a little grungier than Chapters 1 and 3.
Everything here is so dark but
still has lots of the classic apricot and hay.
I remember it as from a dream,
an odd fart smell, at first,
in the nose of this bottle.
Diabolic spices float by
out from the dark sherry butts.
I remember it was here I found
some ginger powder
by following the slightly bitter finish to Hell.
It’s night again,
with a tiny bit of peat.
Night, you definitely should have washed that pot you boiled shrimp in
instead of just rinsing it.
I please my hunger on the honey of living humans.
Night of hunger, sucking on paper.
Follow its stony call.
Follow the freezing raisin moon.
Roasted peanuts are growing.
The palate opens to vacuum bags filled with pears and green apples.
The mildest pepper of the three lights up again.
As in ancient times,
falling wine vapors die behind the back of my throat
by following the freezing grainy moon.
It’s definitely my least favorite of the three Chapters, though I definitely wouldn’t turn my nose up if someone offered me a glass and I wouldn’t argue that this isn’t delicious, despite the mildly off-putting funk in the nose. The palate still shines, just maybe not as bright, as the finish stumbles a bit, too.
Thank you to the kind folks at ImpEx Beverages Inc. for the sample. Cheers!