It’s something of a blip in the Saint Vitus catalog, but 1992’s C.O.D. is ignored only at the peril of the listener involved. After the departure of prior vocalist Scott “Wino” Weinrich to front the reformed incarnation of The Obsessed, Vitus guitarist Dave Chander, bassist Mark Adams and drummer Armando Acosta teamed with Christian “Chritus” Linderson. Linderson had fronted Count Raven on their first album, 1990’s Storm Warning, and came aboard with Vitus at a crucial moment in their career.
Vitus has released V in 1990, an album that still counts high among the all-time classics of American doom. Teaming with Linderson was a risk from the start, but the two were labelmates on Hellhound Records, and looking at it objectively, the emotionality and ultra-doomed vibe the singer was able to capture has made C.O.D. easily the most underrated of Saint Vitus‘ albums. From the “Born too Late”-esque epic title-track to the moment when Chandler himself took the frontman role for “A Timeless Tale” to the reworking of “Hallow’s Victim” that closed out as “Hollow’s Victim (Exhumed),” C.O.D. is a strange but singular moment that contains some of the boldest forays of Vitus‘ career and some of the band’s most quintessential riffing.
By the time 1995 rolled around, Saint Vitus re-teamed with original singer Scott Reagers to issue Die Healing, which would remain their final studio outing until last year’s reunion triumph, Lillie: F-65. Linderson meanwhile fronted Terra Firma and can currently be found in Lord Vicar and Goatess, whose self-titled came out just a couple weeks ago (review here). Next month (Aug. 16 in Europe, Aug. 20 in North America), Season of Mist — the imprint that oversaw the release of the aforementioned 2012 outing — will reissue both C.O.D. and Die Healing. The two albums have long been out of print and not exactly easy to come by, so with these editions, a new generation of doomers gets to experience the sheer weirdness that ensued toward the end of Vitus‘ original run.
Check out the remastered version of “Children of Doom” on the player below, courtesy of Season of Mist:
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SAINT VITUS are now reissuing two long overlooked classics from their impressive catalogue: “C.O.D.” (1992) and “Die Healing” (1995). There can be no doubt: SAINT VITUS are the godfathers of American Doom Metal. And for “C.O.D.”, meaning “Children of Doom” as revealed by the same titled song on this album, the band teamed up with a Swedish Doom legend: singer Christian “Chritus” Linderson of COUNT RAVEN. This trio together with compatriots CANDLEMASS have created their own Doom empire in the north of Europe. SAINT VITUS and Linderson successfully combined their trademark qualities: The singer brought his emotional, despairing and gloomy vocals to bear, while SAINT VITUS added the cataclysmic and unmistakable guitar sound of co-founder Dave Chandler – full of reverbs, feedbacks, flanger and apocalyptic distortion leading to amazing and magical solos. The timing of these re-releases coincides with SAINT VITUS’ celebrated return to the metal world.
Sold out venues on their latest tours, performances at prestigious festivals all over Europe and a new masterpiece in their discography “Lillie: F-65” (2012) have revived the career of the Americans. Seventeen years after their previous full-length “Die Healing” was released, these legends brought back their signature song writing style on “Lillie: F-65”. Doom adepts will delight in the honey slow dripping of notes and the sudden energetic outbursts, which are as painfully depressing as they are sweet. Formed in 1979, SAINT VITUS were largely influenced by BLACK SABBATH, whose song “Saint Vitus Dance” obviously inspired the moniker. Since debut album “Saint Vitus” (1984) these Americans have released six more full-lengths and two EPs that are summarily considered to be classics of their genre. Despite some hiatus and changes over the years SAINT VITUS remained as true icons of Doom. Now “C.O.D.” can be discovered anew with careful re-mastering and two bonus tracks!
2. Children of Doom
3. Planet of Judgement
4. Shadow of a Skeleton
5. (I Am) The Screaming Banshee
6. Plague of Man
7. Imagination Man
9. Get Away
11. A Timeless Tale
12. Hallow’s Victim (Exhumed)
13. To Breed a Soldier (bonus track)
14. The Chameleon (bonus track)
Dave Chandler: guitars, vocals on “A Timeless Tale”
Christian “Chritus” Linderson: vocals
Mark Adams: bass
Armando Acosta (R.I.P. 2010): drums