Dust off those leather chaps, it's the '80s again. Last month saw the vinyl re-issue of Chapel's first and only full album Satan's Rock 'n' Roll (originally released in summer, 2012), which seems like an appropriate opportunity to look at the album itself, as some of us might have missed it the first time around *cough*.
Hailing from the distant paradise of Vancouver, these committed thrashinators disgorge a by-the-books brew of what I like to call the "new oldschool", the sort of thing that would drive blind taste-testers mad. We sure love our labels in this scene, and bands like Chapel and Toxic Holocaust love to sh*t all over that. Hey! This is some groovy rocky black metal, still moist with the touch of NWOBHM! Oh wait, this came out last year, file under retro thrash. Thrash, thrash, thrash. Get ready to read that word a lot.
At this point you're probably thinking "who cares if you have to check the date to even know the genre, what's the f*cking MUSIC like, ya dipsh*t?" To which I would reply with an exasperated fart noise.
See, I like Chapel, and I like this album. It is speaking my language, "totes my jam" and so on. The problem lies in the fact that I like it because I also like Venom and Motörhead, who were doing the exact same thing 30 years ago. Aye, there's the rub. As much as I'm of a mind that too much of a good thing is an awesome thing, one might dare call Chapel derivative if one were a perceptive asshole. With a title track consisting of a lively mishmash of references (if not direct quotes) to the aforementioned pioneers of the genre, one might safely call it homage... maybe?
I'm over-thinking this.
Satan's Rock 'n' Roll is the product of a blind, seething love for all that is leather and hell, if not any impetus to improve on the formula, but what do you want? Thrash is as thrash does, or some such equally vapid platitude. If you want innovation, that's what prog is for. My gut and boots recommend this band, because somebody has to be Venom, and they sure aren't stepping up these days (2011 was forever ago, shut up). If Chapel ever come out east, you can bet your sweet buns I'll be there, and if you're tired of listening to the same dozen or so albums over and over again, and want something new but by no means different, boy do I have more of the same for you!