TeethoftheDivine Covid-19/Virus/Quarantine/Pandemic Special Feature!!!!

Times are weird. There’s a new virus, a worldwide pandemic, and quarantines. Whole countries are locking down, including pubs and restaurants, and toilet paper is the new economy!!!! Could the situation be any more metal???

So we here at TeethoftheDivine are going to help you out. First, we are going to increase our review output for a while, so you #staythefuckhome and quarantined folks have something to read while you go out of your mind around your families. Enjoy even more metal to get you through it!!! Second, we have put together a quick virus/quarantine themed feature for you to enjoy.

I mean seriously, is there anything more metal than an Apocalypse-causing virus? We here at TeethoftheDivine don’t think so. So our non-essential, self-quarantined staff has put together a list of their favorite apocalypse/viral/quarantine-themed set of songs to fit the current times. Enjoy!

Erik T.

The Rotted, “28 Days Later” from Get Dead or Die Trying, 2008.

This was an easy one for me, though it certainly could be perceived as cheating as there are no lyrics that actually deal with viral outbreaks or quarantines. The movie from which the song is taken still stands as one of the greatest zombie/virus movies of this generation (I know, I know, they technically are not zombies!) UK grinders The Rotted covered John Murphy’s simple, already tense main theme and gave it a haunting metal heft that’s absolutely perfect for the subject matter. It’s the perfect soundtrack for the eerily quiet streets that the current quarantine/lockdown has given us.

Frank Rini

Internal Bleeding -“Humanicide” from Voracious Contempt.

I literally can think of so many songs which have topics related to pestilences, plagues and virus strains wiping out people. But when the rumblings from Asia started making their way globally to all to read and hear about I started thinking of the song “Humanicide”, which I wrote the lyrics for on the debut Internal Bleeding album,Voracious Contempt in 1995.  “Humanicide” was the last song we wrote for the album and while the music was nearing completion and I was thinking of how to phrase lyrics, we all knew, they had to be brutal.  After going to the movies to see Outbreak with guitarst Chris Pervelis the idea formed and I went to work writing the gruesome lyrics.  I kept it as realistic as possible and added some more apocalyptic lyrics. I thought the vocals would mesh nicely with the barbaric and brutal musical aspects of the song.  Below are are my lyrics, in their entirety, for you to follow along to the YouTube clip.  When re-reading them it’s downright creepy as to what is taking place now with the virus, deaths, government B.S. and the lyrics also coincided with some of the movie themes, but which could be applied today, as this horrid COVID-19 currently/globally, ravages us medically and economically.  Please be safe and smart:
Secrets from the past denied. Plague is spreading far and wide.  Biological warfare, sentenced to death without no care.  Liquefied organs, blood from eyes hemorrhagic fever intensifies. The only thing certain is death.  Lesions over body, mutating cells take over within the hour. Systematic shutdown, there is no hope to see tomorrow.  Horrors to man.  Will the government gain the upper hand?  Transmit the final phase.  Germs are spreading like wildfire.  Government breakdown ’cause of liars.  People rounded up like cattle, to wage war, the final battle.  Humanity is dying.  All hope is lost with no great cost.  Greed is too strong, man has been wronged.  Faceless facade, pray to your god.  You have now confessed your sins, there is no hope for a win.  Death will be the only cure to make the earth once more pure.  Faceless facade.  Where is your god?  Armageddon is now here.  Judgement of the living.  Mercy for the dead.  Rest in Peace“.

 

Jordan Itkowitz
Slayer – “Epidemic” from Reign In Blood, 1986.

 

Long before Cattle Decapitation had their first vegan burger, long before Death detailed the social distancing that can only come from pieces of your body dropping off, limb by limb, Slayer warned us about an “Epidemic.”

Yeah, “Angel of Death,” “Postmortem,” and “Raining Blood” usually get all of the attention on Reign in Blood, but “Epidemic” has always been one of my favorite deep-cut Slayer tracks. It’s also the lead-in to one of the best 1-2-3 song sequences on any metal album in history.

And lyrically, they could have described any number of plagues and bodily malfunctions, but they settled on “pulmonary overthrow.” Can you get any more prophetic than that (outside of the odd Dean Koontz novel)? No sir.

Or how about this:
“Waiting to unfold
Raging uncontrolled.”

It’s as if they foretold that the country would one day ignore its pandemic response preparations in favor of the ramblings of a reality TV show host with an extreme aversion to science or expert advice. 

“Epidemic – permanent disease” indeed.

Kristopher Allred

GWAR – “The New Plague” from Ragnarok.

 

AIDS: Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, a syndrome caused by the infection with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), with ensuing compromise of the body’s immune system…

Granted, this isn’t typically what one would normally think of when it comes to the issue of viruses/pandemics. Especially, when in relation to heavy metal songs or albums. I mean a disease that was at first associated with homosexuality, STD’s, and intravenous drug use doesn’t really conjure up scenes of a Walking Dead like or Mad Max-ian type of apocalyptic society and/or survival. Realistically, if you are over the age of 40 then the AIDS epidemic was a real life issue and possible concern for you at some point. If you happen to be between 40 and 50, like myself, then you were most likely young enough to be at least half-assed scared of it durng the ’80’s and even early ’90’s. This was a disease with no cure, and in 1985, 13 year old Ryan White put a down home American face to the disease when contracting it via a blood transfusion. Much like some people today in the midst of this Covid-19 situation, Ryan, and those like him, faced bullying, persecution, bigotry, prejudice, death threats, and over all hatred for something he/they had no control of in their lives. It was a sad, confused, and scary time then, a time that almost seems forgotten, other than the fact that we still treat others as just as shitty today as we did then.

Leave it to GWAR though to keep the topic relevant and tackle it, back in 1995 with “The New Plague”, the only way that they knew how; with a total lack of respect and regard, and a histerically ill-humored take that poked fun in a most insulting manner, and touched upon issues while seemingly maintaining their image of the insensitive scumdogs that they were/are. The light-hearted nature musically, fat bass lines, and sing-along choruses are to die for…literally, in the eyes of the late and great Oderus Urungus…Good stuff…The track also brings back nostalgic memories of the first time I ever saw GWAR live, back in November of 1995. I can remember making the three hour drive to a neighboring town after work and then making the suicide run back after immersing myself in the fake blood and wad eruptions that make up a GWAR show. After going to work the following morning, lacking sleep and covered with stained skin, my job let me have the day off  for rest and repair. How awesome is that?

Nick K

Virus “The Black Flux” album.

What perfect band for a Virus theme than the band Virus?  If you are not familiar with Virus they are an Avant Garde Norwegian prog rock group featuring members of the Norwegian group Ved Buens Ende (One of my all time favorite bands). Virus play almost a weird King Crimsonesque style of droning weirdness which just seems all too perfect given the condition of the world right now.

 

Steve K
Anaal Nathrakh – “Hold Your Children Close and Pray for Oblivion” from The Whole of the Law.

The situation at home is bleak. TP rations are down to a maximum of two single-ply sheets per wipe, and that’s only for the most dire of circumstances. You’ve rigged a garden hose to the bathroom sink as a makeshift bidet as an emergency option, but water pressure is severely lacking. Your snack options have dwindled to store-brand cheetos and hydrox cookies (what sick fuck even brought those into your home?!). You only have orange ice pops left. ORANGE.

The grocery store is a warzone. The face mask you’ve MacGyver’d out of an old sepultura shirt you’ve had since high school works TOO well. Breathing is difficult at best – and you probably should have washed the fucking thing before you started. You’re sweaty. SO goddamn sweaty. It’s pooling in your rubber gloves and you can literally FEEL the skin on your hands shriveling and pruning. In hindsight, boots were a terrible idea. They’re heavy, cumbersome. If and when the time comes to run, it’s going to be murder on the knees. And the place is crawling with anxious, strung-out parents who’ve been holed up with their kids for the last week and a half. Blood and hate is in their eyes.

This all seems hopeless, but you’ve got an ace up your sleeve – or rather, in your ears. You throw on your headphones, press play on your phone, and steel yourself with the absolute chaos of Anaal Nathkrath – sending you into a blood-pumping, teeth-bearing fury. Head down, fists pumping, you’re running down the aisles with reckless abandon. TP is a no-go, but you see the snack aisle – and as Dave Hunt snarls “THIS IS WHAT YOU WANTED. THIS IS WHAT YOU NEED.” you break into a mad dash, scooping bags of every snack foodstuff you can fit into your basket.

You beeline to the frozen food section. You look down the aisle, you see ONE box of popcicles left. A sick realization hits as you look to the other end, and see a man looking down to the same box of ice pops.

You lock eyes. You trade intimidating glances. You see him take off and you break half a step after. Time stands still, the world around you in slow motion.

Your paths collide in front of the lone box of ice pops as the chorus hits:

“AS THE WORLD GOES
THE STRONG DO WHAT THEY CAN,
AND THE WEAK SUFFER WHAT THEY MUST.
SHALLOW BE THY GRAVES.”

You return home – bloodied, bruised. You reek. Your knees kill…

And you savor the cool sweetness of a blue ice pop.

J Mays

Brutality – “48-52” From Sea of Ignorance

This song is about yersinia pestis, which is the bacterium responsible for the spread of the Bubonic Plague. It begins with a harrowing spoken word sample, then onto the brutality (heh). On top of it being fitting subject matter for these strange times in which we live, it’s also one hell of a death metal song. Oh, and it’s as catchy as, well, I think you know…

Luke Saunders

Bloodbath – “Ominous Bloodvomit” from Breedng Death

During these crazy, unprecedented times, it’s never been more fitting to find an escape in the wonderful world of metal. I found it a little tricky thinking of specific virus themed songs but felt that the gore soaked, disease riddled themes, drama and horror infused in the buzzsaw art of classic old school death forms a fitting ode to our current predicament as any.

 

Mars Budziszewski

Medecophobic  “Pandemic of Existence” from Pandemic of Existence.

Covid-19 has the globe in a precarious, unprecedented state of action, yet total lack of action, as implied by the word quarantine, resulting in those employed in certain ‘non-essential’ sectors of the economy being out on their ass. However, for that unfortunate demographic of unemployed metal, has there EVER been a better time to guiltlessly go into a YouTube music deep dive allowing whatever mad, forgotten relic of the underground a solid 60 seconds to make its case?!   Well, not in at least 10 years at least.  Upon this special assignment, I set off to conduct intensive, specialized research… where I typed “death metal virus” into YouTube.  Followed also by “death metal infection”.  Eventually, I sophisticated my method using Metal-Archives.com.  This yielded exciting, boredom ridding new finds to impart on the many now finding themselves chronically bored.

What a fitting title indeed!  Medecophobic Pandemic of Existence lay right under my nose.  My search find reminded me it was actually one of a hundred videos in my ‘Brootal DM’ YouTube playlist.  I recalled it being a quality, underrated find but probably hadn’t listened to it in several years.  Pandemic of Existence is brutal death metal somewhere between Deeds of Flesh, and Brodequin.  The record is a frantic collapse of all things civil, like the escape from Terminus scene in season 4, episode 14 of The Walking Dead.  An episode that brought a real death metal double whammy featuring both zombies AND cannibalism.  Yes, I’m performing my obligation to the times and catching up on The Walking Dead.  And, like this pandemic quarantine, I have no idea when the whole thing will end but I suspect it’ll take me through a significant portion of the Earth’s journey around the sun.  Like Deeds of Flesh, the record maintains an ever-changing anomalous form like a swarming mass of millions of mad bees.  I mention Brodequin because I believe they might well be playing Deeds of Flesh covers, but you’d never know because of how damn low tuned the guitars are.  That and the drumming is similarly as relentless.   Dominik Michalke blasts like a rabid banshee, laying it on thick throughout.  The production is overall crunchy and sizzling, which creates a frenzied, anxious state in the songs even during mid-paced portions.  So, Pandemic of Existence is just one of many aurally diseased digital artifacts worth a listen that one might only otherwise come across by algorithmic chance.  There should be enough music in this whole viral feature that you could feasibly head bang away the remaining weeks of isolation.

Additionally, here are 10 thematically dead-on songs to start, or add to your quarantine playlist.

  1. Afterbirth “Spiritually Transmitted Disease” from Four Dimensional Flesh
  2. Deeds Of Flesh “Xeno-virus” from Portals to Canaan
  3. Dawn “Ride The Wings of Pestilence” from Slaughtersun
  4. Baphomet “Infection Of Death” from The Dead Shall Inherit
  5. Inhume “Plague Injected” from Chaos Dissection Order
  6. Fecalizer “Virus Quarantine (Mortal Contagion Part II)” from Zombie Mankind Extermination
  7. Offending “Pandemic Suicide” from Human Concept
  8. Craft “World of Plague” from Total Soul Rape
  9. Deranged “Quarantine Required for Living Entities” from Deeds of Ruthless Violence
  10. Grief “Isolation” from Dismal

 

Pat Hughes

Death – “Leprosy” from Leprosy

There are countless songs out there that deal with the end of the world. I was initially going to explore Metallica’s “Blackened”. It deals with an assumed nuclear winter bringing out global annihilation. But given the  current state of things, and the unprecedented situation we all find ourselves in, I thought it best to focus on something real. What better way to celebrate our global demise than to let the godfather of death metal school us on one of the world’s oldest diseases?

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Death’s “Leprosy” is a grim look into diseased riddles tribes as they are slowly eaten alive by the virus.

 

With the slimy opening riff, accompanied with primitive tribal tom hits, you can feel the sores being to ooze. The blisters start to form as Chuck Schuldiner’s vomitous rasp ups the tempo. Things get terminal at around 1:15, by which point you can feel your skin crawling and the mucus filling your lungs.

 

There are no overt metaphors or hidden messages here. Chuck foregoes the pain relief with lyrics like:

 

First an arm and then a leg

Deterioration grows

Rotting while they breathe – Death comes slow

 

By the time one of Death’s best riffs comes round at 1:50, the life support has been turned off and you know you’re in for a slow death as the song eats you from the inside out.

 

Grim from start to finish!