The 50 best albums of 2022
The Kerrang! verdict on the 50 albums that shaped 2022.
Venom Prison singer Larissa Stupar has a history. One involving an emo phase, sneaking out to skate parks, and nu-metal anthems…
“I grew up in Russia until I was 10, so a lot of the music there was Russian. But I remember my parents constantly listening to Tears For Fears because in the ’90s we were just catching up in Russia – it takes everything a lot longer to get there, or at least it used to. When I hear it, it makes me think of being five years old and running around in our massive garden, playing with our dogs and cats, and having an amazing childhood.”
“I was about 16 or 17 when I started going to hardcore shows. I remember attempting a stage-dive, and the stage was pretty high, and there weren’t that many people at the show, so I fell straight on my head and ended up with a concussion! I was out for 10 minutes, and when I came to I’d been taken backstage so people could take care of me.”
“When I started listening to heavy music, everything was, like, Korn, Slipknot, Limp Bizkit – stuff you would see on MTV. So it wasn’t until I started looking for music myself that I discovered death metal. I found Cannibal Corpse in the metal section in the local record store. They had Tomb Of The Mutilated, and I remember listening to it in the store and buying it straight away. That title kind of sums up the whole genre!”
“It’s a very energetic song. It’s the first track off our new album, and we start our sets with it now. I like to get all my energy out there straight away – it just punches you straight in the face.”
“It makes me think about how when we were, like, 14 years old, me and my friends used to sneak out to go and hang out at the skate park. And then we’d have to sneak back in after drinking too much. Avril was kind of the gateway to rebellion!”
“Oh God, this song is just awful. I fucking hate it. I have to admit that I probably used to love it when it came out when I was a kid. I probably would have been like, ‘This is sick’, but thinking back, it’s probably one of the worst songs ever written. And it was massive at the time when it came out. Was it their only big song? Whatever, this is awful.”
“At the moment I’m really into Drab Majesty. I’ve been listening to them non-stop since their new album came out. I can’t really describe it, but it’s awesome. I wasn’t so much into the album they did before this one, it was a bit too indie-rock, but this one is amazing. It’s one of my favourite albums released last year.”
“This is from my emo phase. Every time I feel like crying and not knowing what to do I listen to this. I like to be more sad when I’m sad, in order to feel better, so this is the song I go to. And yes, I had an emo phase – I was into all that stuff, and I still listen to all those bands.”
“It was the very last song we recorded for Samsara, and it was about 3am when I finally finished recording my parts. In the studio it was just myself, Tom Dring our producer, and Ash [Gray] our guitarist. He was already falling asleep, but me and Tom just carried on and smashed it out. I put in some harmonies and some high vocals, which I’m really proud of.”
“I only really got into them when I was in my 20s – obviously I knew who they were, but I never really paid attention until I saw the video for this on YouTube. Ava Adore is some sort of disturbing love song to the anima, the female side within Billy Corgan. It’s very beautiful but also very depressing, and I think that’s something I’d like at my funeral.”
Check out Venom Prison's hellacious K! Pit performance below.
Despite valiantly trying to make live shows possible for Venom Prison this year, new mother Larissa Stupar admits she was “being too ambitious and was putting too much pressure on myself”.
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What music has dominated your past 12 months? Cast your votes in this year’s Kerrang! Awards now!
Writing on International Women’s Day, Venom Prison’s Larissa Stupar calls on the music industry to do better in supporting mothers and pregnant women.
The UK’s most incendiary death metallers, Venom Prison, expand their horizons on the brilliant Erebos…
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The Cover Story
Standing on the ashes of best-laid plans, Venom Prison are poised to take the next step in their ongoing conquest of British metal. With new album Erebos drawing on the darkness and chaos of the past two years, can they find a light in the black?