Warfare

Pure Filth

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When Warfare's debut full-length Pure Filth was released, the band had yet to perform its first concert; but this was hardly an issue thanks to the members' prior apprenticeship in a number of punk and metal combos (Angelic Upstarts, etc.). Quite prolific (two EPs had already hit the streets earlier in 1984), the Tyneside trio seemed hell-bent on dragging the New Wave of British Heavy Metal back to its punk rock-inspired origins, but this led to as much confusion as it did crossover between these different fan factions. Warfare's song titles didn't help in this matter, either, as evil titles like "Total Armageddon" and "Rabid Metal" absolutely screamed heavy metal, while anarchic ditties like "Breakout" and the title track similarly shouted punk rock. But the answer was clear to anyone who actually bothered to buy the friggin' record and listeners soon discovered that Warfare sounded like a slightly slower Motörhead (or Tank, whose leader Algy Ward acted as producer) jamming with the screamer from Venom. Singer/drummer Evo did indeed recall the ubiquitous Cronos in most every way, but judging from the latter's guest recitation on the chaotic and predictably tasteless "Rose Petals Fall From Her Face," there were clearly no hard feelings between them. Warfare's songs were certainly more approachable than their black metal-founding labelmates, and further album highlights included "Let the Show Go On," "Dance of the Dead," and "Limit Crescendo." All of them were so simple in nature that many cynics were tempted to quickly dismiss Pure Filth as just that, but after a few extra listens, most found themselves converted by Warfare's straightforward delivery and crude charms. Years on, Pure Filth retains this duality and has aged quite well because of it -- perhaps because simplicity often equates to timelessness.