Do you wanna go to heaven? Cancer Christ got the fast pass to the pearly gates if you can follow some simple instructions…

Release date: January 5, 2024 | Sweatband Records/Seeing Red Records | Instagram | Twitter | Bandcamp

All the members of Cancer Christ sound like fan-made characters from a Metal Gear Solid game – Snake Boss, Piss Snake, Diesel Snake, and Apocalypse Snake – but at the head of it all is Saint Anthony, someone I’ve tangentially talked about before when he featured on the phenomenal Squid Pisser album last year. Just like that band, this one is replete with chaotic energy making them immediately admirable to me. There’s hardcore, grindcore, and thrash energy abound on God is Violence – there’s times they seem to channel early Slayer, then others Suicidal Tendencies or Iron Reagan, with the overall feel like that of a religion-themed Melted Bodies album. And still, Cancer Christ manage to be an entity all their own, like an anti-megachurch on its own island.

Let’s be honest too, even for someone as blasphemous and fed up with organized religion as I am, this type of stuff can get old quick. We have grown past the need for Behemoth and Deicide‘s brand of anti-Christianity rage, but that’s mostly because those bands take it way too seriously. It’s COOOOOOOOORNY. Cancer Christ however is a chronically unserious band – I don’t know how the fuck else you’re supposed to take a band with song titles like “Jesus Got a Big ‘Ol Cock” and “Satan is a Bitch”. God is Violence is a complete sendup of (primarily American) Christian conservative culture that erodes the greater societal good. This is the band’s secret sauce and it’s not for everyone, or at least the approach isn’t.

For me though, this band is spitting. Between songs like “God Hates Cops” and “Bring Back the Guillotine”, it’s hard not to fall for their reptilian charisma. God is Violence truly is a Sermon on the Mount for anti-fascists and berserker freaks among us, the vitriol for those in power flanked by amp feedback, mind-scrambling riffs, and a drum BPM like that of the pulse of a millionaire being hunted in the woods by the proletariat. Blood is spilled all over the album – cops, politicians, rapists, you name it. Speaking of, “God Bless The Rapists” is another fave, a profoundly tongue-in-cheek track with a short, ripping solo dividing the track’s diatribe against some of our society’s worst ilk.

In just 26 minutes, Cancer Christ hit you with a plethora of catchy moments and bisecting aggression. “Make Them All Dead” has a neat melody that gains momentum as the track goes on, unscrewing the hinges of itself with each passing second. “Prosperity Preacher” is one of the punkier songs on God is Violence and it straight up flays your ass – it’s a 44-second gangbang of grind that starts with you on your knees… praying. “Tithe or Die” is one of the most aggressive tracks, using scrambing, demonic vocal effects on the latter half to simulate God’s voice – I guess you didn’t pay up in time, and now you die. 🙂

I can imagine these songs being played in a church to a congregation of fans, or parishioners if you wanna keep the analogy going. It’d be like The Righteous Gemstones written and directed by the Jackass dudes with effects and furnishings from GWAR‘s live team, band members and cohorts bum-rushing the aisles between the pews pulling people up to the front to get baptized in piss and shit, etc. A fun time for the whole family. And I can’t begin closing out the review without talking about the last song, probably one of the only album’s sincere, unabated (but still fantastical) moments filled with words that would get me banned from social media for saying in earnest, laid bare just in case you managed to miss the message in previous songs:

Thoughts and prayers are great! But I lust for action. I cream at the thought – a live round in every brain of every chief of police! The decapitated heads of officers piled and smashed to bits! Politicians hanged by their entrails, sodomized and impaled on the flagpoles of freedom – amen! U-S-A! The flesh ripped from the backs of every wealthy man in every gated community, let the children watch and jerk off! Reclaim the churches! Castrate the rapists! And finally(?) remove the eyeballs of every rat, bigot, and hypocrite. Once the earth has been bathed in their blood, it can be born anew! Praise the lord, know His wrath, and drink His blood!

Some will write this off as simply edgy, blasphemous noise – it is – but the satire and energy supplies it with a wonderful sense of purpose. When Ghost first came out, I appreciated their twisting of traditional Catholic iconography and tradition, and this is in a similar space to me, just wound up tighter and set to 3x speed and intensity. Not only that, but as I’ve been saying for the last several hundred words, it’s just compositionally and musically sound if you can hear the nuance between all the viscera and bits flying everywhere. Cancer Christ are one stuck-up parent overhearing their kid listening to them away from being the subject of a Fox News segment that turns into days’ worth of alt-right Twitter rage discourse and that’s precisely why I love them. Sometimes you just gotta fuck subtlety in the mouth. HAIL CHRIST.

David Rodriguez

David Rodriguez

"I came up and so could you, and fuck the boys in blue" - RMR

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