Friday, February 01, 2008


Not really standard G.O.M.E. fare, SST's Program: Annihilator compilation is not only a schizophrenically enjoyable listen, but an important historic artifact. I bought this cassette back in '86, and I still have it to this day. Since it took me 21 years to score a copy on CD, I thought I'd pass it on to the Faithful and see what you all think. In 1986, the legendary SST label was eschewing it's punk and art rock, for which it was most famous, in favor of a decidedly metallic direction. Not coincidentally, that was also the direction the label's flagship band, BLACK FLAG, was pursuing at the time. Much like today, the underground fans of the '80s were an extremely fickle bunch, and by most accounts this stylistic 180 was a dismal failure. Personally, I enjoyed the majority of the music here in 1986, and I enjoy it just as much today. I'm assuming most of you are familiar with BLACK FLAG and SAINT VITUS, the two bands featured most heavily on this compilation. The obscure gem, though, might come in the form of OVERKILL (the LA biker punks, not the terrible NY speed metal band). OVERKILL was Merill Ward's (Greg Ginn's buddy) vehicle for creating big dumb MOTORHEAD-MEETS-BLACK FLAG rock & roll. SWA is another Ward band, and while they were more prolific (though I hesitate to say "successful"), Ward is at his absolute best on the OVERKILL songs featured here (all three tracks pulled from OVERKILL's sole SST release, Triumph of the Will). SWA was the more experimental of the two, though Merill Ward's lyrics are equally stupid with both bands, and that's part of their appeal. D.C.3 is equally interesting. To the uninitiated, "D.C." are the initials of BLACK FLAG's Dez Cadena, and D.C.3 was his less-hardcore side project. The SST roster at this time was particularly incestuous, with original BLACK FLAG bassist Chuck Dukowski playing in both SWA and WURM.

The original SST cassette was over 80 minutes long, so in order to format the compilation for CD, two songs were cut. While maintaining five BLACK FLAG tracks and four SAINT VITUS tracks, the CD version of the release omits OVERKILL's kickass rager "Head On", and D.C.3's interesting psychedelic rocker "We Feel the Sky". Since G.O.M.E. does indeed care about your future (assuming you have one), I'm including both omitted songs.

Overkill - Head On

D.C.3 - We Feel the Sky

1. Saint Vitus - War Is Our Destiny
2. Saint Vitus - White Stallions
3. Saint Vitus - Darkness
4. Saint Vitus - White Magic/Black Magic
5. Black Flag - Annihilate This Week
6. Black Flag - Society's Tease
7. Black Flag - You're Not Evil
8. Black Flag - Beat My Head Against the Wall
9. Black Flag - Thirsty and Miserable
10. Overkill - Victimized
11. Overkill - Ladies in Leather
12. D.C.3 - The Locust
13. D.C.3 - The Maniac
14. SWA - Catacombs
15. SWA - Sex Doctor
16. SWA - Sine Cosine X
17. Wurm - Feast
18. Wurm - Bad Habits



Mrow said...

Righteous! I totally agree about the greatness of OVERKILL. Their whole LP (recorded in '82) is assflattening - I really don't know why more folks don't revere them as an important link in that early HC/metal convergence.

Big Jack said...

Mrow-- I'll try to get "Triumph of the Will" and the "Hell's Getting Hotter" EP posted this weekend. Glad you dig the old Overkill stuff, my friend. I don't meet a lot of fellow fans!

Anonymous said...

dude yur old school hardcore fukin' saint been lookin 4 a digi copy of this 4 years. peace god

Donut Duck said...

Hi folks, i have posted the Overkill abum over at my lil' blog and i think i will post the second Program:Annihilator compilation as weel since it's on SST and my blog is SST exclusive...


Dave Jacoby said...

Lost a copy of the cassette to a friend, and spent years tracking down the CD. Forgot "Feel the Sky". Listening now. Brings back memories. Thanks!

Victor Torres said...

This compilation brings back some serious memories. I remember buying this in 86 and still have it. Finally got a MP3 version. Thanks again.

JB said...

Awesome! I bought this way back in '86 as well. The tape was stolen years ago, so I'm really excited to finally find an MP3 version. Thanks!

DF1983 said...

Overkill's "Triumph of the will" recorded in 1982? Really?

eltib said...


Yes it was recorded in April 1982 at Unicorn Studios in Santa Monica CA.

Term Papers said...

I enjoyed the majority of the music here in 1986, and I enjoy it just as much today.

ZappoMan said...

Thanks so much for putting this page together. I had this cassette back in 86, and listened to it in a loop for an entire weekend as I was reading Atlas Shrugged for a high school term paper. I still instinctually associate SWA, Wurm, Overkill and DC3 with that weekend cram reading session (1084 pages and over 645,000 words in 2 days!!!)

Anyway, I have always hated that the CD was missing these two great songs, and I decided today to try to remedy this hole in my collection! I am so happy I found your page. Thanks a million!

Emc is a Square said...

Hello! I'm not sure when this re-up is/was from, but could you do it again? This is hard to find, please and thank you!