Psychedelic thrash band SADISTIC RITUAL have returned, spewing their very metal take on Americana, infused with enough electrifying energy to propel them into the bright future they surely deserve. Ripping their way into 2022 with a freshly inked deal with Prosthetic Records, and the release of their sophomore album, The Enigma, Boundless, right here, in your face, hitting the streets today! To celebrate, we have teamed up with drummer Joe Sweat, who has put together a full track-by-track commentary below!
Their debut album, Visionaire of Death, was described by Decibel magazine as ‘a fearsome thrash ripper’, whilst other publications leveled comparisons to the likes of Kreator, Watain, and Sodom. The 2019 album was released after honing their craft – on the road and in the studio – and refining the vision that Charlie Southern (guitar and vocals) first brought to life back a decade prior.
SADISTIC RITUAL delivers classic thrash licks in spades, set against a backdrop of chugging, headbang-worthy tunes. The accessibility of their songs – which will delight metalheads across subgenres – belies the thought and consideration that goes into each element of SADISTIC RITUAL.
Their strong DIY ethic means everyone’s getting their hands dirty along the way, and allows each member to play to their strengths. In the case of guitarist, Alex Parra, that includes notching up production credits on the recording of The Enigma, Boundless.. Arthur Rizk (Power Trip, Tomb Mold, Venom Prison) was brought in to master the album.
With a disdain for authority, and themes of real world horrors – specifically spiritual and political fears being confronted – running through the album, there’s a dark and sometimes paranoid undercurrent to the lyrical content on The Enigma, Boundless, penned by Southern and drummer, Joe Sweat. Throw in an affection for LSD and the psychedelic part of ‘psychedelic thrash’ starts to become further apparent. The Enigma, Boundless was written, recorded, and ritualized under the dystopian schism that was 2020 – and arrives here in 2022 to annihilate the fallacies of a fabricated reality.
The distinctive album art was crafted through a collaborative process between artist Erica Frevel and Sweat, who shared themes, ideas and creative directions to guide her visual representations. Bassist LaMar George worked on the album layout, making the presentation of the overall album aesthetic a truly collaborative effort – and an accurate depiction of SADISTIC RITUAL in 2022.
SADISTIC RITUAL is: Charlie Southern – Guitar/Vocals, Alex Parra – Guitar, LaMar George – Bass, Joe Sweat – Drums
IDIOTEQ track-by-track breakdown of “The Enigma, Boundless…” – by Joe Sweat (drums)
“End of All Roads”
This song was written about our city Atlanta, but we believe the themes in the lyrics could be applied to any American city. “Ascension of disease and greed…” The violence, hate, and crime are something we can all attest to. Atlanta’s original name was Terminus, given to the fact that all the railroad lines in the south ended up there. It’s kind of a morbid name, and we chose the title to go along with the theme of “end of the line buddy!’’
One of the first songs we wrote for the album, we wanted to channel our fury outwards over the sheer vanity of today’s culture, especially the social media aspect. The first line – “Inner uncreation, through morbid self-attention/imprisoned by the reality of your own device.’’ We find peoples over sharing and vanity to be repulsive, and we don’t engage in such low behavior.
Avidity means “extreme eagerness or enthusiasm.” We are referring to the eagerness to be seen, identified, and assimilated into this modern monoculture shit-stain of a world that in the end will crush you.
“Murmur” is dedicated to a psychedelic experience from my youth. During this trip (which was the combination of LSD and mushroom tea), I lost the ability to differentiate reality from “fantasy”. What felt like an old memory had turned into a dark journey inward. Somewhere between waking life and sleep I was given visions of nuclear war, death squads, and this nameless/formless malice. Whatever it was it felt as if it were showing me the dominance it had over this world. Taunting my soul and seeking me out. Its surveillance was limitless. Its dominion fed by the dark ritual of war and humanity as the fodder, the sacrificial lamb so to speak. The song is testament to the grim nature of our reality and occult forces that hold power.
“Maelstrom of Consciousness”
This song was the brainchild of Charlie. It is both our fastest song and our slowest one. The instrumentals on this song were probably the most difficult to record, making it the most challenging song to play. The lyrics are a statement on the absurdity of life/existence and the proclamation to be independent, a recusant if you will…
This one is continuing the assault by touching on “the need” to be accepted and seen by the public eye. Only to be tossed aside when you don’t fit the narratives or times. Being an outcast and pariah is the only way to truth. The modern world is a disease and completely unsustainable.
“The Blood of Memory”
We wanted to give the listener a break from the speed and “pessimistic” lyrics to give them something to breathe on. Almost a morale boost like “We know shit is crazy and we’re all going to die one day, but just accept and roll with it.” Charlie and I came up with the main riff in the beginning, but it was Charlie who completed it.
Typically when you hear the word “voyeurism” you think peeping Toms or some sexual deviancy. With this it was more of the obsession with watching others’ lives. Celebrity worship, stalking online, social media etc. It’s like everyone wants to be seen while also watching others obsessively. The unnecessary attention. So again, this Is an attack on the public. Fuck you if you’re like that.
The last track, which is also the title. “What is truly known, can never be taught…” We think of the absurdity of being alive, and the subject of hidden knowledge. Possibly “occult” knowledge, things that aren’t concrete but still somehow describable, especially under the influence of psychedelics. “No end to this journey/no peace in the mystery/just lessons lost throughout.’’ The idea of being in the moment, with life’s mysteries somewhat unfolded, only to be bogged down again by the soul crushing weight of modern society/sobriety. Losing most of the essence of whatever was revealed to you in these states of clarity.