| December 1981|
| August 1981|
Keith Nichol and Venom
| Impulse Studios in Newcastle, England|
Heavy metal, Black metal, Thrash metal, New wave of British heavy metal, Speed metal
Black Metal, At War with Satan, Prime Evil, Possessed, Hell
Welcome to Hell is the debut studio album by English heavy metal band Venom. It was released in December 1981, through Neat Records, at the culmination of the new wave of British heavy metal movement. The music of Welcome to Hell is often described as speed metal, but it had a great influence on the then-emerging thrash metal style, and crystallised the elements of what later became known as death metal and black metal.
The sound of the album is very noisy and rough, perhaps in part because the band thought they were recording a demo when they recorded the album over a period of only three days. According to author Dayal Patterson, Welcome to Hell might be the first black metal album.
The album was re-issued in 1998 by Combat Records and was re-released by Sanctuary Records in 2002.
British journalist Geoff Barton stated in his 1981 five-star review of Welcome to Hell that the album had "the hi-fi dynamics of a 50-year-old pizza", and that it "brought a new meaning to the word 'cataclysmic'". According to AllMusic's journalist Eduardo Rivadavia, highlights of the album include "Welcome to Hell", "In League with Satan", "One Thousand Days in Sodom" and "Witching Hour"; Rivadavia said of "Witching Hour": "Possibly Venom's single most important track, in it you'll hear a number of stylistic devices which would later pervade all extreme metal genres, indeed become their most regularly abused clichés." Canadian journalist Martin Popoff wrote that "Welcome to Hell got a certain fabulously stupid impetus to it, despite the sub-bootleg quality recording, and Cronos quickly establishing himself as the most annoying voice in rock"; it should be considered "a record of historical metal relevance", but "not the band's most listenable product".
All tracks written by Bray/Dunn/Lant.The black metal band Mayhem borrowed their name from the instrumental track "Mayhem with Mercy" and covered the song "Witching Hour" on their EP Deathcrush.
The American death metal band Six Feet Under covered the song "In League with Satan" on their first cover album Graveyard Classics. The Brazilian death metal band Krisiun also covered this song on their fifth studio album Works of Carnage.
Stoner metal group High on Fire covered the song "Witching Hour" on their limited edition live album Live from the Relapse Contamination Festival as the closing track.
The hardcore punk band The Meatmen covered "In League with Satan" on their 1996 album War of the Superbikes, Vol. 2.
In addition to covering the song, Canadian parody metal band Zimmers Hole references "In League with Satan" in the title of their album When You Were Shouting at the Devil... We Were in League with Satan.
Sodom covered the song "One Thousand Days in Sodom" in their compilation Ten Black Years.
The Canadian metal band Voivod covered the song "In League With Satan" on the live album Lives.
Swedish heavy metal band Enforcer covered "Bursting Out" in 2013 and released it on the Japanese edition of their album From Beyond in 2014.
Venom – producer, performer
Conrad "Cronos" Lant – bass guitar, vocals
Jeffrey "Mantas" Dunn – guitar
Tony "Abaddon" Bray – drums
Keith Nichol – producer, engineer
1Sons of Satan3:37Welcome to Hell Wikipedia
2Welcome to Hell3:12