Every decade or so, goth vocalist/bassist Peter Steele (Type O Negative) reincarnates his 80s thrash-core group, Carnivore. With vocals as low as his down-tuned four-string, Steele breaks away from Type-O to go purely raw. When you hear the reunited Carnivore’s drive, with Steele’s vocals brought to frequent screams, you’ll feel the release of his backed-up energies.
This clip of Carnivore’s 2006 reunion captures the group thrashing out one of its insanely over-the-top numbers, “Jesus Hitler.” It begins with a chant of the title, only to follow with the even more ridiculous name, “Adolf Christ.” And many thought that another towering frontman, Marilyn Manson, was the only act in heavy music to own such hyperbolically ironic titles.
This song imagines “J-H” as the son of a “nun, raped by a nazi at the end of the Second Great War.” This confused young chosen one (if you can imagine the character to be such) wonders to himself: “Have I returned to save the Jews, or to destroy them?” (Cue a swelling 100-mph guitar riff.) On one level, Steele captures the desperation of the hard-core club scene, where rebellion is served most effectively in outcries like this one, Agnostic Front’s “Crucified,” or Sick of It All’s “My Life.” Steele’s crack at moralistic culture precludes his later number with Type O, “Black No. 1.” This one tributes a woman who yearns endlessly, passionately, for God’s (physical) love, only so the speaker can remind her that “Jesus Christ looks like me,” and hope to be a divine stand-in. In both examples, Christian culture gets robbed of all its sanctity, and is served as a slap in the face for zealots. It turns out that the myth belongs to everyone, after all.