The first SODOM demo “Witching Metal” was released in 1982 and it was later completed with another four tracks, then again self-released as “Victims Of Death” titled. Short after, Agressor left SODOM and he was replaced by “Grave Violator” Pepi Domic, who was introduced to the band from a certain Mille from KREATOR. Short after that, SODOM played a gig as support band on the occasion of an autograph session of VENOM and they left such a complete amateurish impression behind that SPV boss Manfred Schotz decided to give the Ruhrpott trio a record deal.
This CD contains the first two SODOM releases “In The Sign Of Evil” and “Obsessed By Cruelty”. This first Mini-LP set new standards in the 80s in terms of brutality because it contained five completely perverse, crazy Black-Thrash Metal assaults, which even caused VENOM to look like childish music. The Metal media was overcharged due to this brutal material and ran them down – but the Underground loved them and SODOM reached a totally cult status! They were influenced by the heavies of the older days like MOTÖRHEAD, RAVEN, TANK and especially VENOM but they were ten times faster than all those bands together. But they also copied VENOM’s occult lyrics. They saw themselves as Black Metal, which wasn’t a real genre at all those days but only the name of a record of VENOM...
The band wore spikes and black leather clothes, so they could offer something optically, too. Although Angelripper’s vocals sounded sometimes a bit planless and the drums had been a bit without direction, these albums were very much important for all Thrash and Black fans and many people really idolize them until today. So, some people will surely wonder why I give 8 points for “In The Sign Of Evil” and even 8,5 for the amateurish thrashing on “Obsessed By Cruelty”... But these records have a light hearted charm, boisterously and primitively, SODOM destroy everything, which is in their way. Records full of black energy and mystic, that’s it. It’s not deciding, how planless and distorted they sometimes acted. This is totally cult and countless bands from the extreme genre had been influenced by these “masterpieces”! Period! (Online July 25, 2004)