Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Hard Rock Zombie - "Monsterpiece Theater"
This brand new 10 song slab of scariness is just what the Dr.(Frankenstein) ordered for the fall/halloween season. Just 30 seconds into album opener "Scream Queen" and youre already hooked on the bands ghoulish blend of gritty guitar work, bottom heavy bass, tight drumming and smooth Danzig/Elvis like vocals which see frontman Gory George really coming into his own and finding his vocal identity with this creepy outfit. The 2013 re-'Vamp"-ing of "My Freezer" will have listeners air-guitaring and pumping their fists along to the "GO! GO!" gang vocals. "Top 40 Werewolf" is a standout track amongst this set of tunes. This is fun, energized 50's rock n' roll, just punkified and dragged through the cemetery. I dare you to not clap along and sing "Whoaaaa-aoooooaaaaa!" during the incredibly catchy break. "Wendigo" goes straight for the jugular, and is a straight up crusty barrage of classic, angry, up tempo punk rock that does not relent for 60 straight seconds. "Gravedance" is one of my faves here and is definitely the darkest and heaviest track served up on "Monsterpiece Theater". Slow, brooding bass lines and riffs build an evil aura reminiscent of early Black Sabbath and the 1st Danzig album. The fiery chorus with it's chunky guitar and Gory George screaming "Tonight we're gonna dance on your grave" create the perfect aura for any horror fan looking for their autumn soundtrack. People familiar with HRZ and who have been to their all too infamous halloween gigs at Popeyes Pub will get a nice chuckle from the :30 "Bob For Brains" invoking images of Chris Rush dressed up in full werewolf regalia getting us all to "Bob for brains and win a monster!". "Evil Dead 2" blazes through your speakers next and will have you banging your head faster than you can say "Klaatu Barada Nikto", another classic styled angst driven punk anthem about everyones favorite chainsaw wielding hero Ash! "My Name Is Ted" is another super fun catchy tune, with great rock N roll hooks that work their way into your brain and will have you cranking the volume and hitting the repeat button on your stereo. The extremely gloomy and somber "Inhuman Monster Ballad" may take most by surprise. It's melancholy chords, sorrow filled vocals and beautiful string arrangement are a complete 180 when compared to every other track on this album. But while this song isnt the quintessential definition of punk rock, this track fits and it feels right. Anyone who would down this gorgeous piece of music because it doesnt stick to the punk formula is just jealous that they couldnt come up with such an amazing opus. If there's one thing I love, it's when bands think outside the box, try something a little different and surprise the listener and thats exactly what Hard Rock Zombie does with "Inhuman Monster Ballad". A horror punk band evoking emotions and making me reflect?! You never saw it coming, and thats why it's awesome. Hard Rock Zombie close out this disk with "Dont Worry, It's Just A Rash", 2 minutes of rocking riffs, catchy hooks and more "Whoa's" than you could possibly sink your teeth into! All in all, Hard Rock Zombie have served up what is undeniably their best effort so far with "Monsterpiece Theater". There is something in the album for everyone, punks, metalheads, rock n' rollers, horror fanatics and even those of us who are (blood)suckers for a great ballad. Let's face it, your Misfits vinyl's are getting warped, you've listened to your Michale Graves albums a million times, you need something new in your collection and "Monsterpiece Theater" is exactly what your ears are craving in this fall season. You can find the band online at www.facebook.com/hardrockzombie and you can buy physical CD's or digital copies of "Monsterpiece Theater" as well as the HRZ back catalog and other merchandise at www.hardrockzombie.bandcamp.com