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KOTSEN- Attack of the savage Horde Demotape (Reykjaviken Riot Rekorden, Switzerland, 1985)

Sorry for not posting anything sooner, but things have been very hectic here at GBM’s world headquarters with numerous projects, orgies and debauchery, but here we go again with a very special treat.
I would like to dedicate this post to our friend Behjan Mirhadi, who died December 8 2010. May he be remembered.

What happened to Steve Warrior, a.k.a. Savage Damage, a.k.a. Urs Sprenger after he got fired from HELLHAMMER in 1983?
In “Only Death is real”, Steve says that he understood the sack: “I should have never tried to be a musician. I simply don’t have the the ear for playing music. It was okay for me as long as Tom showed me how to play a song. (…) It was pointless for me to try to be a bassist. This is also the reason why I didn’t play bass anymore after Hellhammer. I didn’t possess the necessary musiciality. I simply don’t hear it. What are you going to do?”
Fact is: Steve did not hang up the bass, as he seems to remember. Having been the chaotic force in Hellhammer, he couldn’t just walk away without leaving another trace, however small it may be. In 1984, he formed a fun project called KOTSEN (the name derives from the german verb “kotzen” which means “vomiting”). Two demos (“Sick and crazy” and this one here), a couple of ironic promo photos (mostly taken in some dump in the middle of nowhere), two or three flyers and a poster – that was all KOTSEN ever produced and all of it is nearly impossible to find nowadays. When recently, I tried to dig up the stuff in my personal archives, all I could find was the one flyer pictured here – everything else is gone with the wind, including the two tapes (so thank you Selwyn for lending me your tape – which in fact is my old copy that I sold over 20 years ago). Did Steve or did he not have the ear, as he said? Judge for yourself – the BEATLES cover alone is priceless.
I was quite irritated when I received the demo from Steve (Urs), from what I remember. On the one hand, it was obviously coming from him, on the other hand he insisted on KOTSEN being a band from Iceland and he was only the manager. One short glimpse on the cover artwork and you’ll immediately recognize the graphic references to the two Hellhammer demos – and of course, you’ll immediately discern Steve’s voice.
Barbaric noise, that was what Steve always had in mind back in the Hellhammer days already. He was the “punk” in the band and was obsessed with Hardcore bands like Terveet Kädet, Rattus, Varaus or Discharge and the likes. Tom, being the undisputed chief in Hellhammer, never was too fond of Punk (although he keeps suggesting differently since the boundaries between Punk and Metal have become very porous in the early 80’s music explosions aftermath). However, the more Hellhammer took shape, the deeper the alienation between Steve and the rest of the gang grew, until he got fired. So in the maybe only ever printed KOTSEN interview in Germany’s crucial «Battlefield» fanzine (the unreleased first version of my own fanzine, «Megawimp», featured the band too, incl. the aforementioned photos and all, but I currently can’t find the artwork masters in my basement), Steve makes clear that the band has nothing to do with Metal – “we don’t play Metal, we play Hardcore or Chaos Punk!”.

Anyway, for the first time ever, you’ll be able to download the only “official” KOTSEN demo tape and eventually even hear of this band at all. Enjoy – if you can.

Download the complete «Attack of the savage Horde» demotape here (.zip file)

19 Comments

  1. “das sind ja traurige nachrichten!
    ich hab behjan leider nie persönlich getroffen, bloss ein paar mal telefoniert haben wir.

    verbunden hat uns die liebe zur musik. ich erinnere mich, wie ich ihm einmal eine kassette aufgenommen hab mit punk und hardcore bands, die er bis dahin nicht gekannt hatte und wie sehr er sich freute darüber – und von dort aus seine eigene reise in den damals noch recht unerforschten kosmos der obskuren punk bands der 70er und frühen 80er jahre unternahm und dabei so manches ans tageslicht beförderte, von dem wiederum ich noch nie etwas gehört hatte.

    ich hoffe, man wird sich an behjan erinnern, so wie behjan dafür sorge trug, dass sich viele leute an diese musik heute erinnern können.” (erich keller, auf behjans facebook seite)

    [Reply]

    Posted on 12-Dec-10 at 14:16 | Permalink
  2. Pär Arvidsson

    Fantastic, I love chaos and this is total chaos.

    [Reply]

    Posted on 12-Dec-10 at 14:31 | Permalink
  3. Pär Arvidsson

    Haha, I´m the only listerner of Kotsen on last.fm!

    [Reply]

    Posted on 12-Dec-10 at 14:35 | Permalink
  4. DLO

    Sorry to hear about Behjan. He was a cool guy to talk to about music.

    [Reply]

    Posted on 12-Dec-10 at 15:13 | Permalink
  5. Jamie

    Thanks for posting this Erich…you made my day! I was always looking for this on peoples trade lists back when it came out but, never did manage to find anyone with a copy. Thanks to you and your awesome blog I need not wonder what it sounds like any longer.

    [Reply]

    Posted on 12-Dec-10 at 19:09 | Permalink
  6. really sucks about behjan. really liked his comments on kbd records. this tape rocks. thanks. nope not metal. funny you say that the hellhammer members didn’t like punk because i can actually hear a lot of punk in the apocalyptic raids ep. weird. thanks again.

    [Reply]

    Posted on 13-Dec-10 at 05:32 | Permalink
  7. Oh man, what happened to Behjan?!? That is horrible news. His enthusiasm for music was one of a kind.

    [Reply]

    Posted on 13-Dec-10 at 10:40 | Permalink
  8. LongHairedAsshole

    Bloody hell, this makes Poisons (german band) Sons Of Evil demo sound like Iron Maiden by comparison!

    [Reply]

    Posted on 13-Dec-10 at 14:54 | Permalink
  9. anarkistattak

    wow thanks for this!
    just finished reading only death is real. didnt even know there was another book ‘are you morbid?” is this demo mentioned in that at all!
    again thanks!

    [Reply]

    Posted on 14-Dec-10 at 07:19 | Permalink
  10. dewey.decimal

    holy shit this is a killer

    [Reply]

    Posted on 15-Dec-10 at 04:34 | Permalink
  11. the rager

    So sad news about Benjan…. I recall we were in touch back in the deay and he recent years he wrote me again… so sad…

    KOTSEN…. haha I recall getting a copy of that demo back in the day… the Geuggis brothers certainly sent it… it was unreal.. just like Gordon’s HELLHOUSE….
    Both projects were OVER THE TOP haha!!!!! Thanks Erich!

    [Reply]

    Posted on 15-Dec-10 at 06:29 | Permalink
  12. Dear Mr. Keller, thanks for sharing this almost lost treasure!

    Would you (or anyone else involved) mind if I upload this on youtube?

    [Reply]

    Posted on 18-Dec-10 at 16:19 | Permalink
  13. SwePete

    Neither good nor bad. Interesting and funny as Hell!
    I like a lot!

    [Reply]

    Posted on 18-Dec-10 at 21:18 | Permalink
  14. love the site — i just found it! i’m trying to subscribe via the rss, but it looks as if it has not updated since April. did you know this?

    [Reply]

    Posted on 20-Dec-10 at 20:08 | Permalink
  15. Clinton Chapman

    This is fucking amazing. I’m most impressed. Will this see a vinyl issue ever? Let’s hope so. I’ll do, if no one else wants to.

    [Reply]

    Posted on 21-Dec-10 at 06:42 | Permalink
  16. Far more interesting then let’s say Napalm Death. Love the noise.

    [Reply]

    Posted on 30-Dec-10 at 14:33 | Permalink
  17. I knew nothing of Kotsen before seeing this post. Entertaining shambolic stuff. I especially like the “scary” atmos of “Depression”. Thanks for this!

    [Reply]

    Posted on 09-Jan-11 at 13:18 | Permalink
  18. Mate I just got this off a friend & decided to blog it myself It was about then I decided to do a bit of research & realised it must have come through you low & behold on the file in comments was your blog so I’ve linked it in my write up which is nowhere near as good as yours. But fucking brillaint well done love to get hold of the other demo. Its also really nice to see you’ve had 17 comments. Well done 10 out of 10

    [Reply]

    Posted on 28-Feb-11 at 14:11 | Permalink
  19. LongHairedAsshole

    I just noticed one thing: compare Celtic Frosts Tears In A Prophet’s Dream and Kotsens Depression…

    [Reply]

    Posted on 20-May-11 at 13:06 | Permalink

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