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This early Mayhem-demo compilation is probably the worst demo-tape I have ever heard! This contains both Pure Fucking Armageddon-rehearsal tape and Voice of a tortured skull-demo tape compiled on the sides "Fuck" and "Off"... The general sound on both demos are terrible and makes Deathcrush sound like a technical masterpiece. Vocals are horrible, and they are closer to death/grind vocals than black metal vocals.
What about the line-up? The only member who plays in Mayhem today is the bassist Necrobutcher. We all know what happened to Euronymous, who is this time also handling vocals. There is this guy called Manheim on drums, so no Hellhammer yet.
The "intro" piece in the start of "Voice of tortured skull" is awful. I am not sure is it guitar or some malfunction on the tape. Whatever it is, it gives me a fuckin' headache! There are some screams and various other voices through the song. On "Carnage" there aren't so many creaks as on the first song, but the vocals are even worse. They sound like that they are recorded with rags in the mouth and then scratched the tape with the screwdriver. Only the lowest groans are on the track. "Ghoul" is a bit clearer but there are no improvements on the vocals. Mayhem knew what they were doing. True Black Metal. And what bands created it? Venom perhaps? That is why Mayhem makes "the tribute to the gods" by covering Venom. They chosen "Black Metal". Perfect song, Mayhem knew it. When I first heard this, I did not even recognized it as a Venom song. Mayhem boosts it's speed to the maximum, and there are no vocals on the track (Yeah!), but the pauses on the track sound like the band stops playing, but then suddenly starts again. The sound is a bit clearer on this track, but this pleasure is very short. The title track returns to the pure noise with suffocated vocals. It's the last song on the "Fuck"-side.
The "Off"-side, or actually "Pure Fucking Armageddon" is slightly better than the "Fuck"-side. Sounds are better and there are no vocals! At least I did not heard them. "Mayhem" is an odd individual to be an intro track. There are some strange noises including various voices created by drums and some kind of talking. It seems that these guys are having a good time. Maybe drunken sincerity? It ends suddenly and the compilation's better version of "Ghoul" starts. Now you can even have some kind of sense about it! "Ghoul" is not a bad song, it just sounded like one on the "Fuck"-side. "Pure fucking Armageddon" and "Carnage" are both here with the better versions. But it does not mean that they still sound well. They still sound shitty.
This demo is available for download at their official web site. No-one should not buy this! It's only a waste of money. If you can even find this...