Monday, September 23, 2013

Album Review: "Venomous Rat Regeneration Vendor" by Rob Zombie

Rob Zombie is now an elder statesman of metal. He can only be about four to five years away from Alice Cooper like acceptance amongst the elders of America.

It's still a bit difficult to think that twenty three long years have passed since this man's  music first came into my life, White Zombie's "La Sexorcisto." After that album though, they swung in a decidedly techno direction with "Astro Creep" and then moving even further to the darkside with the remixed version of the same album. It was hard to not be offended if you were a young metal head.

Rob then went solo and put out "Hellbilly Deluxe" which was even more of a techno album than the last two White Zombie releases. At this point, Mr. Zombie was dead to me, but here we are about fifteen years into his solo career with the latest record. I was drawn to this album because of Mr. John 5.

John 5, Rob Zombie, and the others.
John 5 is one of my favorite modern guitarists and this is not the first album I have snagged because he was playing on a it.

With John 5 handling guitar duties, this album could have gone in one of two directions, back to techno or all out rocking metal, but as he has been a member of Zombie's band for some time, I was holding out hope that this would be a metal record or least more than previous releases from Rob Zombie.

Having heard nothing off of this album, there was only the back catalog to consider and this disc is a very pleasant surprise. The first track opens up into a full on riffstravaganza and the rest of the album goes up from there. John was a dynamite side man on this album. He definitely gave Rob Zombie full voice, full attack, and a full sound.

Rob Zombie is Rob Zombie. In the past two decades plus he has worked more on refining his character and expanding his multimedia empire than he has improving his voice. (This is certainly not a knock on him. It's just an honest statement. Of course he's one of a thousand rock and metal vocalists that could be described in this way.) He performed admirably and wrote some clever lyrics here and there.

As is common for this blogger, my biggest and only real complaint with this album was the lack of lead guitar work. John 5 is one of the most dynamic and staggeringly amazing guitarists going right now, but like Jimmy Page, he was a studio musician first and he's the consummate sideman because he serves the song first and foremost. There were  a couple lead breaks towards the back nine of the album, but I frankly missed hearing some face melting leads by John 5. Well, he will have another solo record soon right? (And hopefully a tour...)

This is a pretty good album, but not great, but I am glad it's in my library.

Year: 2013
Genre: Metal

1) Teenage Nosferatu Pussy
2) Dead City Radio And The New Gods Of Supertown
3) Revelation Revolution
4) Theme For The Rat Vendor
5) Ging Gang Gong De Do Gong De Laga Raga
6) Rock and Roll (In A Black Hole)
7) Behold, The Pretty Filthy Creatures!
8) White Trash Freaks
9) We're An American Band
10) Lucifer Rising
11) The Girl Who Loved The Monsters
12) Trade In Your Guns For A Coffin

Tell us what you think of the video in the comments.

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