Deth Red Sabaoth
As someone who has developed a taste for horror rock, I’ve gone about it completely backwards. While those who have been into the genre for decades ultimately developed their taste around the inspiration ofMisfits founder and short-term member Glenn Danzig, I’ve done so while acquainting myself with those springing forth from his legacy rather than the man himself. That being said, I have dabbled in Danzig’s earlier library, and generally quite liked the hard and heavy metallic horror demons found. So naturally, given the chance, I was quite enthusiastic going into Danzig’s latest album, Deth Red Saboth.
Marking the man’s first new material in over six years, Deth Red Sabaoth, is a culmination of past styles and influences. From what I understand, Danzig’s style has become harder with each passing release, with Deth Red Sabaoth, marking somewhat of a scaling back to the basics that defined his late 70’s early 80’s solo start. That being said, the crunching metal riffs still sink their teeth in hard, with opener “Hammer Of The Gods” laying down some unearthly thunder. Likewise, “Rebel Spirits” roars open like a bat out of hell, boasting one of the album’s meatiest and technical solos. But hereafter the guitars retreat, allowing Danzig to truly embrace the cover of darkness.
The album’s high point comes five tracks in with “On A Wicked Night.” Boasting the album’s moodiest intro sweep, Danzig elevates his legendary voice to the fore alongside a deathly silence only broken by the lone plucking of hallowed acoustics. Singing the first chorus with little aid, he builds a picture perfect setting for a tale of deathly submission. “Hey my lady in death/have you come for my last breath/I never thought that we were through/I bet you knew that I knew it too” croons Danzig, like a lost soul sensing his time is nie. It’s one of those tracks I could loop without boredom for eternity…
Following this lead the band launches into a sustained state of gloom, making for an eerily soulless mid-record high. “Deth Red Moon” settles on that elusive middle ground between acoustic and electric, throwing out and thriving on the power and imagery of a blood soaked horizon. A few tracks later “Pyre Of Souls” emerges to the ritualistic chiming of bells like a specter conjured from beyond, enhanced by three minutes of harmonizing “oohhhhs” and mood-setting piano. “Left Hand Rise Above” ends the record with Danzig’s biggest croon and unquestionable reminder of why after all these years he’s still the true king of darkness.
Deth Red Sabaoth’s morose later half certainly eclipses its heavy opening (his voice will always trump the supporting band), but through and through it’s unmistakably Danzig. It goes without saying that Danzigdoesn’t break any new ground here, but as his first new album in six years, it just goes to show that he hasn’t missed a beat – even if the undead lord’s heart likely stopped doing so many moons ago. A solid addition to lasting legacy.