I For An Eye


YouTube was never really a medium I ever used a great deal until I started doing this blog. Even though I tend to use it now for reliving the glory days of old, I heard a news report on the radio last week where it claimed that YouTube is now the number one delivery method for new music, apparently over other platforms like iTunes and Spotify and the physical format of CD. 

Yesterday I got intrigued with the individual performances that made up the Thrashing East videos, and as I don’t have a VHS player YouTube has been the only way I can watch the Sabbat set. I’m sure there must be a bootlegged DVD version around somewhere but I’ve never had the inclination to scour the world wide web. 

Not to be confused with the Japanese band of the same name, who actually predate them by a few years, the members congregated in Nottingham in 1985. After they released Blood for the Blood God as a cover mounted flexi disc on an issue of White Dwarf magazine the buzz created finally got them a deal with Noise Records once guitarist Andy Sneap turned 18. 

Two critically acclaimed albums followed and the band were lauded within the small UK thrash scene. They offered something different at the time with their brand of thrash metal and pagan inspired lyrics and a stage wardrobe to match, and as mentioned before Martin Walkyier’s fantastic use of the English language. Most people I know who are of that age to know and appreciate the early British thrash scene always seem to rank Sabbat very highly. 

After the second album was released and promoted there was the inevitable implosion and Walkyier moved on to the more folk metal orientated Skyclad. A third album followed with American frontman Richie Desmond which has been blanked from the memory of every thrasher on the planet! It just wasn’t the same without Walkyier’s drawl and lyrics. 

Since the band’s final demise in 1991 there have been two reunions of sorts. Due to Sneap’s objections there was a short run under the name Return to the Sabbat in 2001, who I got to see a few times at the indoor version of Bloodstock.   

An official reunion happened in 2006, this time with the Dreamweaver line up at the behest of Cradle of Filth, who had their Thorongraphy album produced by Andy Sneap. I saw their warm up show in Nottingham and the night after I saw them open up for Cradle of Filth – then promptly went home. I saw them three times after that , all at festivals, and by 2010 it was all done and dusted again and due to more dirty laundry being aired pretty publicly. 

This track about is about the biblical story of the fallen angel Lucifer, and can be found on their debut release History of a Time to Come. This live version is lifted from the video The End of the Beginning recorded within the now demolished Werner-Seelenbinder-Halle in Berlin. One thing you’ll notice watching these clips is Martin’s penchant for chatting between songs. Often when I’ve seen him live you kind of think the band could squeeze in an extra song, somethings never change.