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Worship New Gods

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Album Review

Not to be confused with late-‘60s occult rockers, Coven, whose singer Jinx Dawson apparently attempted — unsuccessfully — to demand a name change here, Worship New Gods is the work of a late-‘80s heavy metal band operating out of Detroit, Michigan. One could say both bands share the same level of daunting obscurity, since Worship New Gods was recorded and released in a limited 1987 vinyl pressing by its creators, duly vanishing into forgetfulness until the folks at Shadow Kingdom unearthed it, but that's really where similarities between both groups end. For you see, rather than Satanically-oriented psych-folk, the Coven responsible for these songs frequently worked an unusually melancholy seam of Dungeons & Dragons-themed heavy metal that was utterly at odds with late-‘80s thrash and hair metal, and this may explain the disinterest of record labels in tracks like "Riddle of Steel," "Wicked Day," and "Kiss Me with Blood," at the time. However, other reasons may have included their loose performances, ragged "arrangements," dodgy vocals, and overall lo-fidelity recordings; problems that likewise afflicted another, more energetic side of Coven represented here by faster, heavier, and altogether tighter cuts such as "Burial Ground," "General's Eye," and "Threshold of the New." All of these elements no doubt contributed to Coven's anonymity (the wildcard "Loki" sounds like a warped take on the Cult's "She Sells Sanctuary"!), as they harked back to second- and third-tier (read: borderline unprofessional, and certainly not ready for prime time) New Wave of British Heavy Metal bands such as Ritual, Pagan Altar, and, at best, Witchfynde. Take that as compliment or criticism, depending on your views of those bands, as there's quite a bit of historical value in innocent imperfections such as this; but the key takeaway is that Worship New Gods will only appeal to a select faction of metallic archaeologists while resembling that pesky garage band next door to the population at large.


Formed: 1986 in Seattle, WA

Genre: Metal

Years Active: '80s, '90s

Yet another minor-league thrash band unable to replicate its regional success on the national or international stage, Seattle, Washington's Coven featured vocalist Jay Clark, guitarists Paul Hash and Dean Babbitt, bassist Gary Peebles, and drummer Neal Babbitt. They only recorded two albums, Blessed Is the Black (1988) and Death Walks Behind You (1989), for the tiny Medusa label before breaking up. Five years later, they attempted a return as a four-piece...
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Worship New Gods, Coven
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  • $8.91
  • Genres: Metal, Music, Rock
  • Released: Jul 31, 2012

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