Friday, May 6, 2016

Rob Zombie - The Electric Warlock Acid Witch Satanic Orgy Celebration Dispenser (2016)

Obviously thrown together at the last fucking minute, this absolute waste of fucking time actually only clocked in at about thirty-one minutes and left me unmoved. Although there are few good ideas utilized here and there and it is a surprisingly heavier disc, the album seems like it could have benefited from longer tracks and possibly a little more initiative. Our intro is pretty forgettable, with only a reverberating thump to benefit “Electric Warlock Acid Witch!” which then goes right into “Satanic Cyanide/The Killer Rocks On” a track that features more electronics, but the same approach to Hellbilly albeit in a different style. Rob Zombie used to experiment more vocally, but he's trying to go back to Hellbilly yet again here and it isn't working for him. We've already heard it, Rob. We've heard it done twice now and there's no need to go back into it. “The Life and Times of A Teenage Rock God” sounds like Zombie might think he's a Rock God for the teens of the current age, which is bullshit as I don't even want to know what the teens are digging, but it's definitely not him. The chorus is strong, there's a nice solo (and an unnecessary clip from a stage show) but once again, it's just so damn formulaic and I've already heard it. When Rob finally tried to do something new with “Everybody's Fucking In A U.F.O.” it backfires on him drastically. The track sounds like a mixture of “Jesus Built My Hot Rod” and “Wynonna's Big Brown Beaver” smushed together in a vein that makes it's sound like an old drunk fool yammering about in complete fucking gibberish. Quite possibly, this is the worst song he's ever attached to his name. What in the hell was he thinking? “A Hearse That Overturns...” comes across as a relatively decent instrumental, where soundclips move into acoustic soundscapes and make a difference. You see, Rob's band is doing a great job on this record. The problem is, Rob Zombie himself isn't.

“...Gore Whore” adds seventies style keyboards to what sounds like sort of party rock. It's decent enough, kind of catchy. But nothing out of the ordinary. “Meditation For The Melancholy” is a little bit better, as it's a more hard-driving number, but it ends abruptly. One of the disc's only good tracks “...Get High” starts off oddly just like “More Human Than Human” and seems to deliver in it's Nu-Metal thumps, as well as an unexpected solo. Rob Zombie's actually on his game here, but the chorus I feel might have hit better if I was still in high school and not about to turn thirty-one myself. The chorus is literally nothing but “Get, get, get, get, high!” over and over, which sounds like it was just kind of slapped together. “Super Doom Hex Gloom Pt. 1” is another instrumental, but it works pretty well if you like keyboard soundscapes as much as I do. “In The Bone Pile” is a decent Hellbilly style song, but once again it shows that Rob is definitely overdoing it with that approach. There are already a bunch of songs that sound similar and this is truly formulaic as hell. “Get Your Boots On/ That's The End of Rock and Roll” comes in with a party rock feel, along with a weird chorus that doesn't really do any of his previous choruses justice. What in the hell was he thinking here? Even a decent solo section can't save this retread. The album ends with the unexpectedly interesting “Wurdalak” though, which actually distorts Rob's voice a little bit and has some threatening thumps. What I found was very odd and a perhaps foreshadowing a little about the man's music career, is the extremely forlorn piano piece that appears at the end of the record. It is definitely a sad piece, backed with wind and thunder which sort of seems like Rob Zombie's death knell in regards to his musical endeavors. He is starting to get a little older (that's obvious just from looking at the cover) so maybe he's lamenting his own demise, especially with so many celebrities dying as of late. There is the actual possibility that Rob might have felt that he was next or something, and wanted to hurry up and get this record out as quickly as possible. Maybe he thought that last track was supposed to be a remembrance piece to him, and was expecting to have died before the record released. In that case, it would have been fitting there.

If nothing else, this absurdly long album title and it's absurdly long track titles are very much reminiscent of classic Rob Zombie. If nothing else, this retread seems like a celebration of all that he's done over the past couple of decades and I can understand that. That being said, maybe it's time that he stick to movies and veer away from music for a while. His latest musical performance DVD was nearly unwatchable, as he nearly butchered classics in an effort to go through them as quickly as possible. I really hope this means that “31” won't be rushed through as well, because as of right now, that's the only thing from him that I'm looking forward to right now. I really wouldn't care if he ever released another disc, if this is all we're going to get. If you need to hear Rob Zombie, then La Sexorcisto, Astro-Creep 2000 and Past/Present/Future are really all you need. Everything else just seems to be retread at this point, which makes this record an unnecessary addition to your Rob Zombie collection. As a commenter on social media put it, “Rob Zombie needs to spend less time making ridiculously long song and album titles, and more time writing actual music.” That I believe, says it best.

(12 Tracks, 31:00)


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