Whiskey and Blasphemy (Xnihilo Records), the 11-song debut album from Canadian trio Blackrat, is a grittily produced 28 minutes of totes gnarly extreme metal. Like holy metalheads Aura Noir and Sodom, Blackrat combines the Satanic themes and rawness of black metal with the speedy guitars of thrash metal, resulting in some good ol’ black/thrash crossover.
The blast-beats, violent vocal screams, and hardcore guitars make Whiskey and Blasphemy insanely moshable. The album starts off with the unmerciful instrumental “Invocation of the Horned Rat;” that title alone sends chills down my back. “Armageddon Slut” comes in a little under half-way through the album. It’s two minutes of lo-fi metal packed with awesome guitar solos. The brutality of drummer Russell Shanahan is most prominent on “Night of the Goat” - which I was slam dancing to in my bedroom.
As cool as Blackrat is, I’m gonna be honest: black metal is kinda cheesy. Sure, worshipping Lucifer and sacrificing animals seems rad at first, but after a while, those themes become pretty boring and generic. I know Blackrat uses Satanism to be tongue-in-cheek, but they can be tongue-in-cheek in unique ways. For example, they could change their song “Acid Attack” to “Stay Away From Acid” to promote chemical safety. I’m just tossing around ideas here, but I think you understand what I’m rambling on about.
7.9 / 10
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