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ANTONY 'ABADDON' BRAY wants VENOM's classic lineup to reunite: “I can see it happening”


In a new interview with The Meista – Brews & Tunes, former VENOM and VENOM INC drummer Antony “Abaddon” Bray was asked about the possibility of a reunion of the band’s classic lineup, also featuring frontman Conrad “Cronos” Lant and guitarist Jeff “Mantas” Dunn. He responded: “I don’t see why not… I thoroughly believe that, put the three of us in a room together and it would just start again. I really believe that. The balls would be there. The intent would be there. The heart and the soul would be there. Because it’s what we do. We’re not virtuoso players. We’re not geniuses at what we do. What we are good at is being together and being in the band, and I can’t see why that shouldn’t happen again… I can see it happening. A lot of people say not, but I can see it happening.”

In 2015 Abaddon joined his former bandmates Tony “Demolition Man” Dolan and Jeff “Mantas” Dunn in the band Venom Inc. After a short break to be at the birth of his daughter, he never returned back. He was temporarily replaced by The Abscence drummer Jeramie “War Machine” Kling, who now still is Venom Inc’s drummer. The band later revealed that Abaddon didn’t actually play drums on their debut album ‘Ave’, which was released under Nuclear Blast in 2017, but that they were forced to use the midi tracks they wrote the songs with to be used on the album. In interviews to promote the album, he repeatedly told press how impossible it was to work with Cronos and how little interest he had in ever performing with him again. 

Abaddon‘s comments about the reunion come six months after Cronos told Metal Hammer magazine that the chances of a reunion of VENOM‘s classic lineup are “less than zero. I owe them nothing, and they’ve got nothing I want,” he added. “We still get fans saying, ‘The VENOM legions want the old lineup back together.’ We tried in the ’90s and it wasn’t well received. The last thing I want to do is get onstage with those other two doddery old fuckers and put on a subpar performance. I’m getting better album sales now, so why the fuck would I want to go back to that? I just want VENOM to be great.”

Asked if he feels sad that there’s no relationship between the three of them now, Cronos said: “Yeah, of course it’s sad. But we had a blast, and I’ll cherish those memories.”

Abaddon revealed in September 2022 that he was diagnosed with lymphoma, a form of cancer. He shortly after sent out messages that said he came through  the procedure successfully.

Bray sent Arrow Lords Of Metal the following statement in September :

“I noticed a mass growing on the side of my neck in July 2022, I thought it was maybe an insect bite as I live near the sea and it was a hot month here.
The mass grew bigger and, urged by my wife Rachel,  I went to see my GP who reassured me that it was most likely not cancer because cancerous lumps don’t come up over night usually, rather they take a longer time to grow. However she referred me to the freeman hospital in Newcastle to a specialist who reiterated her thoughts on the speed of my growth.
He did some tests then sent me straight away for a biopsy, I had three samples taken and then went back to see my specialist who said that sadly it was lymphoma a cancer of the blood.
He sent me immediately for a CT scan and an MRI scan which showed that I also had cancer in my bowel and lower intestinal tract. 
He decided therefore to not operate on my neck but to refer me to haematology at wandsbeck hospital in Ashington. 
They decided on 6 cycles of chemotherapy which I started yesterday. 
I  will also be referred back to freeman hospital for radiotherapy after a few bouts of chemotherapy. 
None of this will break me.
Fuck cancer.

BRAY was one of the founding members of VENOM, alongside original guitarist MANTAS and they were later joined by singer/bassist Cronos, initially as a rhythm guitarist. The three recorded several heavy metal milestones, among which the seminal 1982 records ‘Black Metal’, which is celebrated by VENOM INC throughout 2022, by playing it in its entirety. He was in VENOM from 1979 to 1992, and later, initiated by a live reunion on Wâldrock in the Netherlands, from 1995 to 1999.

He joined then M:Pire Of Evil and former VENOM bandmates Tony “Demolition Man” Dolan and Mantas in 2015, to continue under the name of VENOM INC. He left in 2018, with no reason of departure formally addressed ever by either side. He was replaced during a leave to be at the birth of his daughter, while the band continued the already booked tour with American drummer Jeramie “War Machine” Kling, initially as a temporary replacement, but who has been in the band ever since. Bray then revived his project Abaddon, under the name of Abaddon UK and released the EP ‘All That Remains’ in May 2022, on which he plays drums and does the backing vocals.

A few years ago, VENOM INC parttook in Pick Collectors Against cancer. Said Abaddon: “My brother died from cancer at an early age of 54, younger than I am now. He was a outdoors kind of person, didn’t drink much, never smoked, very happily married. Was dead within two weeks of being diagnosed. Absolutely horrible disease.”

VENOM INC released their second album ‘There’s Only Black‘ (in Dutch) under Nuclear Blast last year. the album was very well received by both press and fans. They also performed a special ‘Black Metal’40th anniversary set festival appearances, for which former CRADLE OF FILTH drummer Nick Barker filled in at Belgium’s Alcatraz Festival and UK’s Bloodstock Festival. They played the entire album in its original order, including some songs that were never played live by any incarnation of VENOM before.