Pictures of atrocities, abominations of Western civilisation, war, brutalisation and devastation: Sodom, one of the very first German thrash metal bands, appear to have everything but calmed down in the twentieth year of their career, and (thankfully) they don’t really seem to be much the wiser: Sodom are still loud, tough, troublesome and totally committed. On August 11, 2001, Tom Angelripper (vocals, bass), Bernemann (guitars), and Bobby Schottkowski (drums) are scheduled to perform a gig at the Rock Pub in Bangkok, presenting a number of tracks off their new album M-16 to fans and journalists from all over the world. The lyrical theme of the record deals with the horrors of the Vietnam war. One day later, on August 12, there will be a spectacular world premiere as part of a free show in Saigon, Sodom being the first metal act from the West to play Vietnam.
In May of this year, the band visited both Asian countries, travelling Thailand and South Vietnam to get a first-hand impression of the country which still bears the scars of a devastating war. The three musicians did not only meet napalm bomb victims but also visited the famous war criminal museum in Saigon, which exhibits pictures of victims, decapitations and people disfigured by fragmentation bombs, plus a complete arsenal of missiles in all shapes and sizes (the biggest one weighing 6.8 tons!) and jars containing the bodies of deformed babies, victims of the toxin Agent Orange. The defoliant was used by the American army in the merciless clashes during the war and causes severe deformations for at least four generations. At the same time the band took part in an extensive tour of the 200 km Cu Chi tunnel system, which the population used for underground operations.
The new album M-16 is due out at the end of October on Steamhammer/SPV and deals with the barbarity and effects of the brutal Vietnam war, which raged between the southern and the northern part of the country during the Sixties, with around 500,000 US troops fighting Eastern Block military. Sodom continue a long tradition of politically committed and socially conscious albums that Angelripper & Co. started with Agent Orange and Code Red.