As one-half of the playful experimentalists in Matmos, Drew Daniel has spent the better of the last two decades gleefully tearing down walls between conventional song structures and high-minded sonic exploration. What recent Matmos fans might not know is that Daniel also has a long-dormant side project called The Soft Pink Truth, which put out a couple of warped house records in the early 2000s. That project released a collection of covers of classic hardcore and punk songs called Do You Want New Wave (Or Do You Want The Soft Pink Truth?). Now, nearly 10 years later Daniel is returning with a sequel of sorts, one of his most absurd experiments yet, called Why Do The Heathen Rage?
This new record, due out June 17th on Thrill Jockey, compiles a set of covers of black metal songs funneled through Daniel’s technicolor house filter. Running the extreme right-wing politics of metal’s most self-serious strain through the genre that most readily embodies the spirit of ’80s gay culture is a radical move. The objectionable parts of the originals were often rendered incomprehensible through a combination of distortion and tape hiss, but Daniel’s more sparse and open takes force a head-on confrontation of the messages contained therein. Check out a cover of Venom’s genre-defining “Black Metal” below, which features vocals from Baltimore artist Bryan Collins and screams from Daniel himself. Jenn Wasner from Wye Oak, Terence Hannum of Locrian, and Antony also guest on the album. You can check the full details below, as well as a picture of Daniel done up in corpse paint above.
Stream: The Soft Pink Truth, “Black Metal” (Venom Cover)
Why Do The Heathen Rage track list:
1. Invocation for Strength
2. Black Metal (Originally performed by Venom)
3. Sadomatic Rites (Originally performed by Beherit)
4. Ready to Fuck (Originally performed by Sarcofago)
5. Stanic Black Devotion (Originally performed by Sargeist)
6. Beholding the Throne of Might (Originally performed by Darkthrone)
7. Let There Be Ebola Frost (Originally performed by An)
8. Buried by Time and Dust (Originally performed by Mayhem)
9. Maniac (Originally performed by Hellhammer)
10. Grim and Frostbitten Gay Bar (Originally performed by Impaled Northern Moonforest)