My only beef is with God. I wake up every day, I curse Him every day, because there is only on person who's responsible for the life I fucking have and that's the bastard who created us. I fucking hate Him. - Glen Benton
Oh Glen, you rapscallion, you. You're not fooling anyone with that inverted-cross branded on your forehead. We all know you don't mean it - that it's all a gimmick. Right?
Not fucking likely. If there has been anyone in music that's more devoted to promoting his or her beliefs than Glen Benton, please step forward. Not so fast, King Diamond. Make-up washes off. Scars are forever.
There have been many incarnations of Deicide over the years. Some of them good; some not so much. The Stench of Redemption falls into the former category and this is achieved with seemingly surprising ease despite the absence of the Hoffman brothers, longtime members who probably left to pursue a happier pastime.
Sure, we all know Benton's an asshole, but we don't have to work with him. Thankfully, all his misery and hostility has been condensed into one of the best albums of the year. Gone is the blatant anti-Christian sentiment of "When Satan Rules the World" and "Holy Deception" that graced previous albums. Now we have much more subtle rhetoric in fanciful little ditties like "Homage to Satan" and "Death to Jesus." More of the same? Perhaps. But in many cases, better than the old. The addition of Jack Owen and Ralph Santola has been a blessing that's kicked the band up to a whole new circle of hell.
Which circle, you ask? Believe it or not, it's the hell of power leads. Yes, you heard right. The polished solos on this album can really sound anachronistic against Benton's primordial grunts and growls and at first it's a bit confusing, to some maybe even off-putting, but after a couple of listens the dichotomy becomes part of the charm, making The Stench of Redemption one hell of an album. But don't take my word for it; just buy the fucking thing. Daddy needs a new satanic bible.