Horror rock is still kickin’ these days. For the longest time, it was all I ever knew and by far the most fun subgenre of punk and metal. Nothing was off limits in horror rock, and what made it more of a fun time than most other genres was the actual all-inclusiveness of everyone. Not saying other genres/subs don’t. You go to a hardcore, metal or OG punk show, you’ll see 90% white males…even though we don’t hate…that’s what’s there…the other 10% is scattered among women as well as other ethnicities so with horror rock/punk how it differs is a wide rainbow of a crowd as well as on stage. Did you know there are also Christian horror punk bands? That’s…odd. Yes, it is; however, it’s a testament (no pun intended) to how this particular subgenre is pretty open to anything. I guess no more odd than Christian black metal now that I think about it, but we’ll discuss that later.

The Chicago-area band Sinister Fate came to us with their album BLOOD PACT. I didn’t listen to the album at first; I did a little research on the band and watched some videos. My first impression was far from what I normally get from horror bands. Their videos are very reminiscent of the 90s style Gwar videos. Ya know, handheld shaky camera, choppy editing, Tromaesque splatter effects. So I instantly fell in love with this style. I also was impressed that there are female participants in the band. Again, this is rare for a lot of other genres but in horror rock, it’s very normal.

What really sealed this band for me was the guitarist. This chick really wails on this thing. Her playing is absolutely amazing, from just riffs down to solos. She really takes it and shows what’s up with guitar playing.

The music begins and this is definitely horror rock. BLOOD PACT is just an EP-style, 6-track short album. However, it gives you what you need to know about this band. The album as a whole is executed beautifully. I can say that if you’re a fan of any horror business, then this is a band to definitely check out.
Sinister Fate - Blood Pact
Track by Track (not in order as they appear on the album):

  • The Monster Within: This track is like a solid break down style track, a lot of palm muting and kind of a slower pace. However, it gets the point across on what the song’s feel is all about. Lyrically very dark, and a nice look into the writer’s head, that guitar solo though…Just listen and enjoy this.
  • Trust/Obey: Another slower, heavier/slow paced track. Vocally reminiscent of older Frankenstein Drag Queens, lyrically super intense and “demanding”…yeah we’ll say demanding. Very catchy and fun.
  • Decay: Starts out very spooky sounding musically, almost like they’re going for an epic battle in a back alley. Not like “Beat It” style, but more like A Clockwork Orange vs. The Warriors type of battle. Then carries on in the same fashion, maybe my imagination just sees images too much I don’t know, but this is what I get from it.
  • Kill the Pain: I don’t care, I love this guitarist. This track is pretty straightforward, I listen to lyrics and wonder if there’s more of a personal meaning behind them or if someone is just trying to fit the genre. However, it sounds very personal and has the same feeling through the music.
  • Six Feet Under the Big Top: Oh circus style and creepy on the intro, then some crunchy heavy stuff happening. A very cool number that, tells a fun story of murder and mayhem
  • Sympathy from the Devil: A more upbeat almost poppy tone with this song, and catchy as all hell, If you’re going to listen to this band then listen to this song first.

Overall, BLOOD PACT is great to listen to, the band as a whole are all talented and know their stuff very well. About the album: It runs together from track to track a lot of them being so similar it’s hard to tell them apart musically and vocally. By this I mean, musically it’s the same arrangement, not the same notes and so forth but the same blueprint for each track. Vocally flows the same way, same influx like before a chorus and so forth notes carried out, blah blah musical mumbo jumbo. This works well for some bands, and if it works don’t fix it, is the common consensus. However, I can see a lot more coming from this band maybe some faster tunes and a bit of a change in arrangement from track to track. This would really send this band into outer space and put them up there in the horror world.

Sinister Fate - band

I'm an artist, specializing in illustration both digitally and traditionally. I also write short stories as well as for On top of all this I make music. Punk rock/Hardcore mostly and now dipping into thrash and death metal. I have a kid, I'm diabetic, I'm straight edge.. That's pretty much it for who I am and what I do.
MUSIC: Sinister Fate – Blood Pact (2016)

MUSIC: Sinister Fate – Blood Pact (2016)

Horror rock is still kickin’ these days. For the longest time, it was all I ever knew and by far the most fun subgenre of punk and metal. Nothing was off limits in horror rock, and what made it more of a fun time than most other genres was the actual all-inclusiveness of everyone. Not saying other genres/subs don’t. You go to a hardcore, metal or OG punk show, you’ll see 90% white males…even though we don’t hate…that’s what’s there…the other 10% is scattered among women as well as other ethnicities so with horror rock/punk how it differs is a wide rainbow of a crowd as well as on stage. Did you know there are also Christian horror punk bands? That’s…odd. Yes, it is; however, it’s a testament (no pun intended) to how this particular subgenre is pretty open to anything. I guess no more odd than Christian black metal now that I think about it, but we’ll discuss that later.

The Chicago-area band Sinister Fate came to us with their album BLOOD PACT. I didn’t listen to the album at first; I did a little research on the band and watched some videos. My first impression was far from what I normally get from horror bands. Their videos are very reminiscent of the 90s style Gwar videos. Ya know, handheld shaky camera, choppy editing, Tromaesque splatter effects. So I instantly fell in love with this style. I also was impressed that there are female participants in the band. Again, this is rare for a lot of other genres but in horror rock, it’s very normal.

What really sealed this band for me was the guitarist. This chick really wails on this thing. Her playing is absolutely amazing, from just riffs down to solos. She really takes it and shows what’s up with guitar playing.

The music begins and this is definitely horror rock. BLOOD PACT is just an EP-style, 6-track short album. However, it gives you what you need to know about this band. The album as a whole is executed beautifully. I can say that if you’re a fan of any horror business, then this is a band to definitely check out.
Sinister Fate - Blood Pact
Track by Track (not in order as they appear on the album):

  • The Monster Within: This track is like a solid break down style track, a lot of palm muting and kind of a slower pace. However, it gets the point across on what the song’s feel is all about. Lyrically very dark, and a nice look into the writer’s head, that guitar solo though…Just listen and enjoy this.
  • Trust/Obey: Another slower, heavier/slow paced track. Vocally reminiscent of older Frankenstein Drag Queens, lyrically super intense and “demanding”…yeah we’ll say demanding. Very catchy and fun.
  • Decay: Starts out very spooky sounding musically, almost like they’re going for an epic battle in a back alley. Not like “Beat It” style, but more like A Clockwork Orange vs. The Warriors type of battle. Then carries on in the same fashion, maybe my imagination just sees images too much I don’t know, but this is what I get from it.
  • Kill the Pain: I don’t care, I love this guitarist. This track is pretty straightforward, I listen to lyrics and wonder if there’s more of a personal meaning behind them or if someone is just trying to fit the genre. However, it sounds very personal and has the same feeling through the music.
  • Six Feet Under the Big Top: Oh circus style and creepy on the intro, then some crunchy heavy stuff happening. A very cool number that, tells a fun story of murder and mayhem
  • Sympathy from the Devil: A more upbeat almost poppy tone with this song, and catchy as all hell, If you’re going to listen to this band then listen to this song first.

Overall, BLOOD PACT is great to listen to, the band as a whole are all talented and know their stuff very well. About the album: It runs together from track to track a lot of them being so similar it’s hard to tell them apart musically and vocally. By this I mean, musically it’s the same arrangement, not the same notes and so forth but the same blueprint for each track. Vocally flows the same way, same influx like before a chorus and so forth notes carried out, blah blah musical mumbo jumbo. This works well for some bands, and if it works don’t fix it, is the common consensus. However, I can see a lot more coming from this band maybe some faster tunes and a bit of a change in arrangement from track to track. This would really send this band into outer space and put them up there in the horror world.

Sinister Fate - band

Posted by Schock in MUSIC REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
Joe Becker-Monster

Joe Becker-Monster

Another artist of the underground world got with us and wanted us to hear what they have to offer. Remember in my last review I stated that the underground is home to me, so I love seeing new faces and hearing new and original works.

A fellow by the name of Joe Becker got with us here at House of Tortured Souls with an album Monster that he described as Death Rock. This is an honest description and I respect that, I’d call it something like mind fuckery rock…and here is why.

The album as a whole is well produced musically, not a lot of vocal singing, but plenty of vocal dialog and storytelling over an accompanying musical background like a narrative. Joe’s way of interpreting what he’s got going on is like listening to the thoughts of an asylum inmate’s thoughts or better yet, what this inmate did to get where he is.

Each track is like a tale of a different victim and how they either asked to be murdered or just how this absolute insane person took it upon themselves to give the victim a release from life. Going into this being told it was death rock. I was expecting something with a lot of synthesizer, deep Peter Steele style vocals and a lot of vampiric sex. However, I was surprised at what I did here. As I said, each track is slightly different from the next on the tales told within them.

A few pointers to note: where Mr. Becker does sing or attempt to do so, it was a bit off key from the music and that very well could have been the intent. If not the intent, then this did not work out as planned. I feel like this record is fine how it is with the narrative style of vocalizing the poetic, goth, yet murderous lyrics. However, if singing is something you want to achieve on a record..for anyone..find that note you’re on and match your voice to it. I am NO singing vocalist…I yell fast and violently. However, when I do make my attempts at singing I hit that first note on the guitar and find it in my voice before carrying on.

Overall this is a great album to listen to if you really want to fuck someone up…keep it low in the background while friends are over just to fuck with their heads a bit. They will hear music and be like, “okay, whatever”, then dude starts in on his vocal track and it will subliminally mess them up, probably cause a nightmare or three. Another option, any one of these tracks will be good to send as a single (oh..oh showing what time period I’m from, yo) to basically say “I hate you, and this will happen if you contact me again”.

I highly recommend listening to this record at least once even if just for curiosity. It’s not something I’d recommend for driving, jamming out to or if you’re suicidal or a sociopath. For fun and “horror on tape” kinda deal, then definitely have a go at it.

Posted by Schock in MUSIC REVIEWS, 1 comment
Review: S.H.O.U.T. Set Your Drinks Down

Review: S.H.O.U.T. Set Your Drinks Down

I’ll start with this little history lesson in why I do music, and why it means a lot. My roots of music and the “scene” are deeply rooted in punk rock. I have listened to music from bands that were recorded in shitty garages on a Talkboy (throwback…woot), I’ve heard bands demos that were so grainy and poorly produced that you can barely make out the vocals and maybe half the instruments. BUT production quality never mattered to me on if the band was good or not. IF the band and their songs were good, it showed through all the shit they did to record. I respect the underground with more regard than I do the highly paid production bullshit because I am the underground; it’s where I’m from and what I call home. From garage handheld recording to studio- to self-recording on computer software, I have been through it all myself; I’ve heard it all and talent is talent no matter what the quality of the recording.

So what I have been chosen to take on the task of listening to anything and everything that comes through the Tortured Souls realm.

Sometimes we are asked in the multimedia, journalistic business to do things as part of our job. The thing about this line of business is that we are tasked with watching movies, reading books, listening to music that sometimes makes us rethink our position in the world. Sometimes it makes us wonder why we even tell people, “Yes, you can do the thing you’re doing!”. We receive many different things in our mailboxes ranging from music, Indie films, even art review requests. Not always is what we are presented with great and fun and amazing. So now I’m going to present to you an album that was sent to us here at House of Tortured Souls by a band called S.H.O.U.T. Now let me say up front, this band came to us, with a warning that we would be honest in our reviewing. They wanted to be reviewed, so they’re getting reviewed.

At first look of the people making this music, I thought to myself, “Why’s this guy look like Blackie Lawless from W.A.S.P. raped Nikki Sixx while wearing a Power Rangers villain costume?” Instantly I judged by the cover. Which we are taught not to do as children, I did though and I soon figured out that I was right in my judgment. The first track on this album was LOUD super loud and sounded like a karaoke mic with too much reverb. You ever watch the episode of The Venture Brothers where some alien comes from space, and the team has to find pieces of Jonas Venture’s lost machine to put together, just to kill this guy? Well, it sounded like the alien. With that said, I thought, “Intros are always a little weird. I’ve made some myself that made no sense so whatever.” Song 2 plays, and I’m hit with something less than to be desired. The production of it was very unclear, and that’s fine usually but this was like hitting record while the garbage disposal was broken and stuck in the ON position.

I don’t know how to describe this music other than if the Decepticons decided to fight giant cats instead of the Autobots. As they stepped on their tails the screaming from Megatron was so fierce all of the pots and pans in the world that are placed in cabinets with loose doors fall to the floor of every household was used for the drum line. The guitars almost felt like the speakers were punctured with Skeletor’s voice. I decided to skip ahead to the next track, and it was just as unattractive. Then I got to thinking, maybe this is a band that does this on purpose to get a rise out of people? Perhaps they’re the kind of band from a rural area where they are the only band at all in the vicinity and thus the Amish tell them they are awesome? I am truly unsure what they are about I can say for certain though. The example I was given was less than to be desired all across the board. People sometimes get their hands on some used gear, plug in and play without even learning how to tune an instrument. These are called 12-year-olds, so as adults I’m not sure what was happening here.

As an independent musician, I can offer this: The world is a cruel place, I have had bad reviews in my day, and soon John Roisland here with House of Tortured Souls will be reviewing my whole discography (I just volunteered him for that). I do not at all expect praise. I expect honesty and that’s what you get when you toss your album out there. So Take note S.H.O.U.T.: Practice Practice Practice. Take time to learn the trade instead of throwing on some Mercyful face makeup and strumming an untuned guitar thinking rock stardom is next. Maybe find a phone booth time machine, go into the future and take guitar lessons and come back to win the battle of the bands by playing a KISS cover of an Argent song. Or you can just learn yo’ mother fucking shit. I watched the videos and I listened to the album, I feel like this whole project is satirical in a way that isn’t funny at all. I’ve listened to terrible music… Fuck, I do listen to terrible music according to most people’s opinions. I even make terrible music to most. This though, I do not recommend it unless you’re using it as a lesson on what not to sound like. Now take note again, you may be reading this and thinking, “Damn Schock is a fucking cocksucker.” No..they asked for this and were warned on the honesty of the ordeal. So before you think I’m being harsh. Watch the following videos and see for yourself just what is going on here.

So with that, I bid you all a good evening and go ahead with your name calling and blah blah. Not everything is going to be a bomb ass review. Not every band that comes our way is going to be the next big thing. Music is Life… Don’t shit on life.

Posted by Schock in Categories, MUSIC REVIEWS, 1 comment
Scott Andersen – Horror Artist

Scott Andersen – Horror Artist

Some of the horror world gets overlooked by the masses. We all see the movies promoted heavily and the occasional book promoted heavily music also gets in there every so often depending on the name behind the band. Something that flies under the radar to the mainstream world is the horror fine arts.
There’s a few of us out here still pushing the pencils, brushes and other classic ways of making visual works of horror that bring joy to the hearts of this community. With the age of digital everything, the ways of traditional arts have gone by the wayside, again though there’s a few of us out here that as artists we need traditional to keep us sane. Sure digital is fun and easy and at our fingertips, but if you’re an artist you know the feeling it is to pick up a pencil and put it to paper, or a paintbrush to canvas. I’m not discrediting digital artists at all, but the traditional artist is still alive in all of us, some just lost it. Others, though, keep it thriving and one gentleman and a great friend of mine I’ll be talking with today is Scott Andersen.
Scott uses the pencils, pens, markers, paints, airbrush…etc etc etc. The ways of the old to do the art he does, as well as utilizing digital rendering for certain aspects, however, it is important to note that this guy although a jack of all trades, is a master with a good ole fashion number 2 pencil if that’s all he has.

Horror heroes - Artist: Scott Anderson

House of Tortured Souls: When you started drawing what made you pick up the pencil?
Scott Anderson: I just always loved drawing and painting. I took some art classes early on but mostly taught myself. I remember spending hours watching Bob Ross on TV. I even bought one of his painting sets….most of my trees never came out quite as happy as his. Art was and always will be a huge piece of my life.

Lemmy of Motörhead - Artist: Scott Anderson

HoTS: Who have been the biggest inspiration/inspirations on your work?
SA: That’s a tough one. I think I really draw inspiration from all the artists I see. When I see an artist’s work that I love I try and take a little bit away from it that will help me push myself to be a better artist. Two artists that come to mind right away are Alex Ross and Nathan Thomas Milliner. Two great artists that always inspire me with their work. I think the trap that many artists fall into is seeing another artists work and comparing themselves to that artist. I have learned over the years that you can only compare your work to what you have done in the past.
HoTS: When I’m drawing if I’m not feeling it, I just don’t touch the pencil until it’s absolutely right I feel like it’s forced. Do you feel the same about it, or just pick up and go with it?
SA: I have been trying lately to draw, paint or do something creative every day. There are times where I don’t feel inspired or I just really need a break. I find that if I sit down to draw and it feels like a chore than maybe the time isn’t right. I have a tendency to want to try any and every kind of medium I can get my hands on which means I usually have at least two or three projects going on at a time.

The Periodic Table of Horror Movies - Artist: Scott Anderson

HoTS: I have seen many of your works and have loved them all, even the sports figures. The execution was spot on. So out of all the years you’ve been at this, what is your favorite piece?
SA: Oh boy…that is like asking me who’s my favorite member of Nickelback ( just kidding). Every piece that I create is special to me in one way or another. The pieces that I love the most are ones where I try new techniques or new medium or where I push myself to try something I have never done before. I have been working with black and white colored pencils on toned paper lately and I really love the results. If I had to pick on or two I would say [The] Periodic Table of Horror Movies and the custom Fright Night shoes I painted.

Fright Night shoes - Artist: Scott Anderson

Owner of Fright Night shoes - Artist: Scott Anderson

HoTS: When you started the Horror Artist Group on did you think it would ever grow to the numbers it has?
SA: It really has grown beyond what I ever thought it would. I started the group not only as a way for artists to share their work in a positive environment but also as a way for them to network and get feedback from other artists. For me, it has been a great place to share my work and I have also met some really great people. One of the coolest things was hooking up with Erica and Zack from Atomic Cotton and having one of my designs printed on a shirt. The networking for me is just as important as being able to share my work.
HoTS: Did you ever think the group would attract the attention of some of the bigger name artists that are in the group?
SA: Are you kidding me? I was surprised that I wasn’t the only member of the group! I feel that every artist in that group is amazing and if we can pull in some big name artists well even better!

Blondie - Artist: Scott Anderson

HoTS: How do you feel about the way sites like RedBubble and TeePublic are for the independent artist community?
SA: For me, it has been amazing. I have had great success on both sites. They are a great means of exposure and can really bring in some great revenue. It makes me happy to see so many people buying my work. Unfortunately, there can be a downside to these sites as well. With the ease of these sites also comes the ability for some folks out there to blatantly steal other artists work and pass it off as their own. I think that if used correctly and if the company is legitimate than it is a great tool for any artist.

Bride of Frankenstein - Artist: Scott Anderson

HoTS: Do you feel horror art should have a spot with the likes of music, comics, and movies? Or should it stay low key as it has for the longest time?
SA: I don’t think it’s a matter of being low key, I think that the horror genre itself has always struggled to be recognized. I feel that great art is great art no matter the theme. There are some great horror artists like Basil Gogos, H.R. Giger, and Bernie Wrightson who helped to push horror artwork into the mainstream. Horror and dark subject matter have always been an influence in art even going as far back as artists like Caravaggio and Albrecht Durer. Go back and look at their work…that is some creepy shit! I think the important thing is to put out great artwork. That is how we as artists can push horror artwork to the forefront.
HoTS: Horror Conventions are a hot spot for artists to sell prints and things. How do you see this helps the art world? Or is it something more of a competition between artists?
SA: Conventions are a tricky subject. I haven’t had the opportunity to vend at a convention, but many of my artist friends have stopped going to conventions for a number of reasons. The fees are getting higher and higher, and with so many different vendors and with celebrities charging more and more for autographs it seems that people have less to spend on merchandise. You really need to stand out with your work if you are going to make any money at a convention. It is a great place, however, to get your name out and network with other artists. I feel that you have to go to a convention with very low expectations.
HoTS: You’re a huge advocate against artists stealing others work. How does it make you feel when you’re at a convention and you see someone selling multiple prints of movie posters, but then see fellow independent artists work in their collection?
SA: Anyone who steals someone else’s work is NOT an artist. They are purely and simply a thief. The advent of social media has really made it easy for people to steal artists work and hard for artists to crackdown on art thieves. Unfortunately, stolen artwork has become almost the norm. I think the real solution to the problem is for fellow artists to work as a group and call out thieves when they find them. There is power in numbers.

Vincent Price - Artist: Scott Anderson

HoTS: You use many mediums to make your work. Do you feel like an endangered species of sorts because it’s mostly traditional methods?
SA: I don’t think so. Good art is good art no matter if it is traditional or digital. I have done a few pieces digitally and I really enjoyed it. For me, it is all about pushing myself to try new areas and new mediums. Being able to work digitally makes me a more well-rounded artist. I love trying things that I am uncomfortable with. It makes me work harder and is really satisfying in the end. With that being said I have seen some folks who take a photo, throw a couple filters on it in Photoshop and call it art. There is no skill or artistic ability in that.
HoTS: Which is your favorite medium?
SA: I will always love graphite. It is how I started. I have recently started working with colored pencils, and I want to try to get back into mask making which is something that I have always loved but haven’t done in years.
HoTS: Over the years being friends with you, I’ve seen a lot of fantastic ideas come from your work. What drives these ideas?
SA: The countless voices in my head!! Honestly, I get my ideas from many different places. Many times other artists work will inspire me to come up with cool ideas, other times I just get bursts of inspiration. I have a black composition book that I carry with me that I write down all my ideas as they come to me so I won’t forget anything.

Kurt Cobain - Artist: Scott Anderson

HoTS: Going back to the Horror Artists group, do you feel that group has helped you grow as an artist? Do you feel it’s helped the community of lowly horror artists grow themselves?
SA: I think that our little group has had a great effect on everyone. I know for me personally, it has been a great source of inspiration. I have seen some really fantastic pieces. What really makes me proud is the fact that it really is a judgment-free zone. Members can post their work without worrying about bullying or abusive comments. I run a pretty tight ship. If you can’t play by the rules then you are gone. As I mentioned before it really is nice that I have been able to meet so many great artists.

- Artist: Scott Anderson

HoTS: Any advice for aspiring young or even older artists that want to get their name out?
SA: My biggest advice is to never underestimate, or undervalue yourself. There will be artists out there that you feel are better than you are but always remember that there is someone else out there who looks up to you and your work. Also, keep pushing yourself to try new things and challenge yourself. Surround yourself with positive people and above all NEVER work for free. Your time and talent is worth the money!

The Omen lunchbox - Artist: Scott Anderson


It’s been a great pleasure knowing this fine gentleman of an artist for the past few years, and actually digging deeper into this creative mind has also been something completely awesome. If anything can be taken from this, is that keeping art alive and bringing back to the forefront of the horror world the art and the magic that it brings. Movies are cool, music is cool, but let’s face it. Looking at a finely drawn picture of either an original design or someone’s unique take on a beloved character really makes you smile inside.

H.P. Lovecraft's Re-Animator lunchbox - Artist: Scott Anderson

Posted by Schock in ART AND VENDORS, 0 comments
Slayer…The Grand Finale!

Slayer…The Grand Finale!

For the last 37 years, the music world has changed dramatically in many aspects and it can be said without a doubt that there is one band that has touched all of us in the world. As a music fan of every sort, I have studied the likes of Chuck Berry, Alice Cooper, Tommy James and the Shondells, Black Sabbath, Motley Crue, Ramones, Sex Pistols and beyond. Music has always been important to me and something that keeps the world ticking. One band though that has changed the way we look at music in the metal, punk, and underground genres that everyone has pulled inspiration from is the almighty SLAYER.

Slayer Group

It was announced this morning that Slayer would be doing one last tour this year, which we announced earlier this month. With Anthrax, Testament, Behemoth and Lamb of God and then that is it for a band that for nearly 40 years has not only stayed true to their sound they have inspired many metal and punk acts across the world. Leaving a legacy that will be remembered throughout time.

Slayer Tour image

On May 2, 2013, original founding member and guitarist Jeff Hanneman passed away from cirrhosis of the liver. Jeff Hanneman For a lot of us in the metal world, this was it for Slayer. However, they pressed on with Gary Holt of Exodus fame.Gary Holt He was a worthy — stand-in  we will never say replacement due to Jeff Hanneman’s signature style of playing it could not be matched. Slayer has gone, now this will be the 5th year with Holt on guitar, releasing Repentless on September 11, 2015, Slayer showed the world that they still have what it takes to be the best thrash metal band of all time. Also, past drummer and original founder of the band, Dave Lombardo has gone on to do so many different projects such as Suicidal Tendencies, Dead Cross and of course taking the throne for the Misfits on these past 4 performances. Slayer’s legacy is something more than just who’s in the band now but the musical genius of Dave Lombardo and his influence from being in Slayer and beyond.

Repentless Album Cover

Touring non-stop and hardly ever taking a break, this album will sadly be their last as well as this tour being the last for the band. We are sad, yes, but here’s something to remember: although we see them as gods and heroes, they are after all humans with families and lives outside of the limelight. So let us rejoice and celebrate with a band that has changed our lives, a band that has set the standard for how not to sell out your sound.

Say what you want about Slayer, and about thrash metal, but we cannot deny the influence and the impact overall that this band has had on the world of music from thrash to punk to hardcore to death metal to speed metal… and the list goes on. Slayer will not only go out this year with one of the best lineups of any tour. They will go out as legends, with music that will withstand the test of time. In 60 years, people will look back on music history and see that Slayer was a force to be reckoned with. All of the fans, the bands they’ve influenced, and believe this or not..the lives they’ve saved. Yes, I said it. Slayer saves lives. We will miss the live performance and any future records. However, it’s all for the best, and that’s what matters here.

From all of us here at House of Tortured Souls, Slayer we will be seeing you on this final tour and bid you all the best for the remainder of your lives for you and your families.

Posted by Schock in EDITORIALS, OBITUARY, 0 comments
Body Count – BloodLust (2017)

Body Count – BloodLust (2017)

The band Body Count, fronted by rapper and actor Ice-T, is a band that flies under the radar most of the time in the metal scene. I mean we always knew about the existence of this amazing band; however, we don’t hear much from them year after year like some metal bands. So when they do drop a record, it’s something to put on constant rotation.

The new album BloodLust, like the previous five albums they’ve released since 1992 hits HARD. Something that I’m sure when they came out people were confused “Ice T? Metal?” Pffffft, he took it and he owned it. I honestly put Body Count up there on a pedestal with many bands in metal and hardcore. Their message, their talent, and their image is what influences the people of the world to think and look at the actions of the government, ourselves, the world in general. The respect Body Count deserves in music needs to raise up, and this album will show you why.

Body Count - BloodLust / Image: Fair use doctrine.

Here’s a track by track view:

  • “Civil War”: Not only does it come out political from the get-go, the message in the song gives you a feeling that the current state of the country is real. The shit seen by blacks, whites, Latinos, by everyone in the world is real and here’s the response Body Count is speaking for US.
  • “The Ski Mask Way”: A nice little number, rhythmic, and keeps your head moving. Also shows that Ice T is true to where he came from. He may be a cop on tv but my dude is still more gangsta than anyone on the market today claiming they’re street.
  • “This Way We Ride”: Body Count, as I mentioned, gives us a view into street life, into the reality of the world that’s out there. This song does just that. The lyrical content and perfect flow of a rap style vocal pattern over the extreme talent of the band gives us a look into what’s out there. A harsh reality in song, that even in the short time it plays, if you just listen it’s like watching a 2-hour movie of the streets. This is a deep fucking song.*
  • “All Love is Lost” (with Max from SoulFly/Sepultura): Boy..let’s just say this is a heavy damn song. Get fucked over, you’re dropped. Period.
  • “Raining Blood/Postmortem”: Yep, these mother fuckers cover the almighty Slayer on this piece. There’s a little backstory at the beginning of the song on Body Count and how they got their sound. Slayer was a big part of that. This really took me by surprise and I must say I loved every second of this.
  • “God, Please Believe Me”: The guitar line….that’s all I’m gonna say. Sets the tone for the lyrics that are deep on a personal level for Ice-T, I’m sure. At only 1:25 seconds long, it’s one where the words touch you and make you look at things a little differently.
  • “Walk With Me” (with Randy from Lamb of God): You know this mother fucker is heavy with Randy on guest vocals. Just listen and let it fill you with fear.
  • “Here I Go Again”: No it is not a White Snake Cover..I was sad too. BC shows us what metal is all about with this song. A bloody image instantly crawls in your mind with a CLASSIC horrorcore vibe lyrically. Metal music behind the super dark lyrics. This is horror.
  • “No lives Matter”: A response to all the “lives matter” issues opening of the song explains what it’s all about. How everyone who says “All lives matter” really doesn’t care about anyone but themselves. Just listen, and you’ll understand.
  • “BloodLust”: A little history lesson in what’s wrong with the human race. We love murder apparently, vengeance, etc. This is a damn fine song and I love how they give it straight about who we are as people. Everyone wants to point to this or that as the issue. It’s all of us, it’s in us we are the problem.
  • “Black Hoodie”: We all remember the several stories of police officers shooting kids just rollin’ down the street just had a hoodie on, had his hood up. The police shoot without just cause, and then it became a trend. Body Count gives it to us, on what the issue is.
There’s racism all over the place, and I know there’re people out there in the metal world giving grief for a band like this. Let me say this: even the haters can learn from BLOODLUST, learn what other people outside of their race go through. IF it’s the music that speaks to you, then let this album speak to you. Let this album show you what’s out there that you may not be dealing with. Ice-T said once on stage:
You ain’t gonna make niggas listen, nobody listen, singin’ about how much money you got, singin’ about shakin’ yo ass. That’s bullshit. Hey, you do an album. Okay, one song, I’m rich. Now you got nine fucking songs to talk about some real shit. Music, fuck music, just leaders. Sisters. I’m talking about young white girls, young white boys, black… I don’t give a fuck. Open your motherfucking mouth and say something, man.

This whole album is a look into a life that a lot of us do not live, and really eye opening on a lyrical level. Musically, Body Count delivers something that metal music lost a long time ago. I’m really glad to see that this style and this sound is still in the veins of these guys. BloodLust is an amazing album, and I suggest it to everyone into music to buy this record and listen to every millisecond of it.

Body Count Official

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Rumor: Ultimate in Metal Tour!

Rumor: Ultimate in Metal Tour!

When a lot of us think of metal music, we go instantly to Slayer, Megadeth, Anthrax…ya know, all the top dogs that got us into this shit. Now, let’s look at this dope mother fucking rumor flying around.

The guitarist of the almighty Testament leaked a li’l hint at a possible Spring/Summer tour featuring: Behemoth, Testament, Lamb of God, Anthrax, and Slayer. Boooooy, I don’t know about you, but that kind of news hit me hard. This is something of a throwback thrash fest like Clash of the Titans in the early 1990’s. However, we got the newer but well-respected Behemoth and Lamb of God, joining the thrash metal legends.
So far only one date is posted:

6/4 Reading, PA @ The Santander Arena

We will be checking every source to bring you all news on this tour, as it is truly a metal event that no one wants to miss. Yes, people talk their shit about all of the old bands Slayer, Testament, Anthrax yes are aged.

Let’s take a look, though, at the legacy they have left us over the years. Slayer has never slowed down, Anthrax had that one guy for while, we usually ignore that period, “ONLY” was a cool song though. Testament fell out for a while, but they’ve been back and damn good and faster than ever. So before judging the older cats take note they still got what a lot of other bands do not have and that is a dedication to the music that made them who they are and influenced metal thereafter that we have today. Giving us bands like Lamb of God, Behemoth… Adding these, also legendary acts to the bill really makes this kind of concert event something to be desired.

Well, that’s all we have, for now, so keep checking back as soon as all dates(if any) are posted and confirmed we will post it here for all you pretty li’l metalheads.

Posted by Schock in Categories, EDITORIALS, SATANIC/DEMONIC, STAFF PICKS, 0 comments
MUSIC REVIEW: Darkest Hour – Godless Prophets and the Migrant Flora (2017)

MUSIC REVIEW: Darkest Hour – Godless Prophets and the Migrant Flora (2017)

If you have never listened to Darkest Hour, I would recommend grabbing this record, checking it out, and seeing what all the fuss is.

I saw these guys a few years ago live in Indianapolis, IN, at the Emerson Theater if memory serves correctly. I believe Himsa and Acacia Strain were the other bands with them, and that was one hell of a show. That was my introduction to Darkest Hour – a live performance, you know the old-fashioned way of finding new music. For that time period, something like that was a welcome style. When the whole melodic metal thing was breaking out, these guys put a new twist on it though they weren’t whining with their vocals. They come out screaming ready to kick ass and this new album is no different from that moment. Sure, they’ve progressed musically, but the style never changed, and they’ve stayed true to the first second I heard them.

A lot can be said about Darkest Hour. This band is just all out heavy, heavy, heavy, fast, and to-the-point Metal. With their classic thrash style guitar solos and blast beat drums, you would think it was a band from the mid-80s or early 90s. This force-to-be-reckoned-with of a band brings us their ninth studio album: “Godless Prophets and the Migrant Flora”.

This album has really shown what kind of skill Darkest Hour has in the music business. In a time when metal music isn’t particularly all the rage anymore and things seem to be slowing down in the music world (and, to be honest, I thought metal had been docile for too long), it’s good to see a band still out there keeping true to their roots.

This album starts out with a song called “Knife in the Safe Room”, and as it comes at you as just a blast of metal madness. You cannot beat that. Then we slide right into “This Is the Truth” with a smooth transition. Straight up..this album is the truth. The melodic metal sound that they bring is mostly in the music. There’s none of that clean vocal, housewife metal style; it’s all hard and growly and heavy, so when you listen to the harmonizing guitars and expect some cleanliness, you will be surprised to hear that there is none of that happening. Starting extra hard, and not slowing down till the end when there are a couple slower numbers, Godless Prophets and the Migrant Flora is a damn fine record that definitely needs to be a part of your collection pronto!

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Horror Remakes: Why They Are Not Bad

Horror Remakes: Why They Are Not Bad

Something that weighs on the minds of horror fans every time an announcement of a new movie is coming out, and that one thing is “Will this be a remake”? Now the words reboot, remake, re-imaging, or whatever the wordage may be. These are things that no one likes to hear when you’re a “True” horror fan; however, what makes you a true horror fan? Is it the way we view horror as an art form? Is it the attitude we take towards Michael Bay? Is it the "Robert Englund is the only Freddy" stance? Let’s take a trip through time and explain how re-visioning is how it all started and all the “elite” are not justified in their constant complaining of reboots. Yes, you can have an opinion, but you’re not always right. The fact of the matter is; none of us are right, it’s all perspective of our interests. So allow me if you will, to explain why remakes are essential and going to happen despite all the elitist’s basement dwellers best efforts and internet trolling to stop them.

Nosferatu (1922) / Fair use doctrine.The dawn of the horror age in movies was met with films such as Nosferatu and Phantom of the Opera, both of which were movie adaptations of tThe Phantom of the Opera (1925) / Fair use doctrine.he written word. I’m sure someone in 1929 set in their smoke-filled basement and stated via telegraph “Universal Studios. Stop. The books were better. Stop. Sincerely, Guy you’ll never see.” Then the 1930s come and bring us the Universal Monster films. Again, this was more than likely met with flak from people who read Dracula and Frankenstein and wondered why the movies were nothing like the books. Well, this is considered a re-imaging to adapt to film. Same idea, just a new perspective.

Horror of Dracula (1958) / Fair use doctrine.Throughout the 50s, 60s and 70s all the monsters we loved were re-imagined again in different forms, stories etc. Christopher Lee made Dracula famous again, Peter Cushing put a new twist on the Van Helsing character. We could carry this on but you get the idea. Were these movies met with disgruntled fans of the original Monster movies? Of course, however people of today still give love to Christopher Lee as a horror icon and why? HE WAS IN A REVISION OF FUCKING DRACULA! That is why. These same people complaining about the slasher remakes that were made famous in the 1980’s are the same that have not only the Universal Monsters box set, but the Hammer set right next to it. Have we learned a lesson in horror yet?

Probably not, or you’re looking at your collection thinking it’s a different scenario. It is not, it’s the same concept.

A Nightmare on Elm Street / Fair use doctrine.The slasher and horror remakes of today are no different than those of yesteryear. The remake is essentially laziness on Hollywood running out of ideas but what’s really going on is. They’re burrowing for ideas and then it hits them “Oh, man ya know if I were to make Nightmare on Elm Street, I’d add some backstory it would really help explain a lot of the movie that didn’t make any sense at all in the original”. Well look at that, that’s what, happened. Made more sense and got the story across with a more realistic burned person with boils and all that and not a cheeseless pizza. Not to mention, something that hits the scene “The new Freddy wasn’t funny”. No he wasn’t, and NEITHER WAS THE ORIGINAL! Also “His voice is too deep and creepy.”…ie. Now with that said also, homeboy was burnt up in a fire, his vocal chords probably were soot covered and damaged. I’m sure the writers would issue an apology for realism, but if I were them. I wouldn’t. So, with that said. Let’s take a peek at some other remakes.

Michael BayI’ve read a billion reviews on each, and seeing that Michael Bay was a part of most of them the common thing people say is “Michael Bay sucks, he just blows stuff up.” Ok. Shut up. Without saying that line that EV.ER.Y.ONE says, tell me why Michael Bay sucks. I’ll wait. His movies even Bad Boys were good movies, Transformers was good, as were the Ninja Turtles Movies. Sooo, there’s no justification when everyone says the one thing that does not matter at all on his remakes. I and some of my peers even that I’ve discussed this with have never heard any other reason for Michael Bay to be considered a bad movie maker other than “he blows stuff up”. Which again is all anyone says.

Clancy Brown, Sean Penn, and Robert Lee Rush in Bad Boys (1983) / Fair use doctrine.

Clancy Brown, Sean Penn, and Robert Lee Rush in Bad Boys (1983)

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003) / Fair use doctrine.Texas Chainsaw Massacre: This movie remake was by far the best of them all. It was not only a very well told story, it took out the cheese of the 70s and added a LOT more gore for today’s horror aficionado. It for sure added a lot better of a factor of scare and realism. There was literally nothing wrong with this movie. If you went into it thinking “the original was better” you’re insane because the original lacked in so many ways in comparison. For the time the original was made, yes it was brutal. Someone saw an idea later, and with less restriction, so they made a movie that should have been made in 1970 whatever.
Halloween (2007) / Fair use doctrine.Halloween/H2: Say what you will about Rob Zombie, his movies went from TCM loosely based films, to the remakes of Halloween and Halloween 2, then the not so great films of Lords of Salem and 31, so yes, his originals lack heavily in my opinion, others here love them, but hey we are still friends and it’s no big deal. However, here’s what’s up with Halloween. I hated Halloween by John Carpenter. Halloween II (2009) / Fair use doctrine.That’s right, I dare say such a thing. It was a boring ass movie. No story, just a lot of “oh there’s a guy and now he’s gone.” Rob Zombie added a lot of backstory, a reason for Michael to be the way he is which made a ton more sense to the movie. The rest are pretty much the same as the original except for bloody gore fests right from the beginning. Again, making it far better than the original ever was. Halloween 2 was just bloody which made it fun, other than that it was kind of like a bad dream the whole time. Rob Zombie, really did a bang-up job with his RE-VISION of Halloween probably the best there ever were or ever will be.
Friday the 13th (2009) / Fair use doctrine.Friday the 13th: This film was great, it wrapped the first 7 movies into one. Did we need 45 sequels before? Nope, not at all. So, this summed them all up awesomely. So, this remake was on point with the rest, gave the backstory briefly, burned through 1 and 2…3…4…5. 6..7 in like 2 hours. Killed a ton of people hilariously and boom. Done. This is what made the movie a great rendition to the Slasher remake series. Got to the point, showed some titties, and lots of senseless killing. Without having 8 sequels for no good reason.
Poltergeist (2015) / Fair use doctrine.Poltergeist: Sucked as a movie not because it’s a remake. It was just awful even as a standalone movie. It was, just no.
Evil Dead (2013) / Fair use doctrine.Evil Dead: Seriously, a fantastically remade movie, and it’s undeniable that this movie had some great storyline, the graphics were classic and disgusting. The blood, my lord Vincent Price, the blood was something to be glorious about. If you didn’t like this movie at all, then just take yo’ self out of horror fandom and go to the kiddie booth where you belong.
Bill Skarsgård and Jackson Robert Scott in It (2017) / Fair use doctrine.Okay, we’ll skip a few and move on to IT. With IT being released a lot of folks have stated it looks like crap. What the fuck movie are you watching? Because it was damn good, although the original was the original and Tim Curry blah blah blah. A true-blue horror fan will watch both back to back and be like “Ok the original was fairly boring and far too hokey”. The remake already is instilling pure terror into people. JUST FROM THE TRAILER! which was like “Fuck..this…” Who cares if Tim Curry or John Boy Walton aren’t in it. Who cares if it’s not made for TV and released on 4 VHS tapes. It is a great film, I wasn’t surprised it was great, I was surprised it was hilarious as well as scary.

Like it or not the remakes will continue as people sit around digging up ideas and say “I’d do this differently.” We can’t stop them, we don’t have to watch them. Over the years, I have seen only four remakes not worth a damn and honestly I’ve seen a lot that were really bad so bad I can’t remember them but the movies right off hand I’m speaking of: Poltergeist, Hellraiser, House of Wax and Carnival of Souls. Every other remake has been stupid good, more graphic, more story and a lot better than the original. A Little tidbit to add to this, Evil Dead and Evil Dead 2 *ahem* SAME FUCKING MOVIE! Yes, that’s right same damn movie, can you believe that people say they’re not? Then complain about the remake that was recently made. Look at yourself and wonder why you’re this type of person. Also My Soul to Take Nightmare on Elm Street revision BY WES CRAVEN. If you as a fan paid any amount of attention to Wes Craven’s reasoning and creation of Freddy Krueger you would know that My Soul To Take is taken straight from those interviews, straight from his mind.

So before judging the movie before it comes out. Realize you’re one person with an opinion. Watch the movie as a standalone film and let it fill your heart with joy. We are all horror fans. We all have preferences, and we all have the love of the genre. Dissing on remakes is counterproductive and hypocritical when you have a Bela Lugosi and Christopher Lee posters right next to each other. Vincent Price with the black cat and other Poe stories. I dare anyone to say he didn’t breathe new life into Edgar Allan Poe’s stories. So, all of us can climb off our high horses now and enjoy these damn movies that are more awesome than before. Then in 20 years talk shit about people remaking Insidious and The Conjuring.

Posted by Schock in EDITORIALS, 0 comments
Argyle Goolsby-Darken Your Door Step

Argyle Goolsby-Darken Your Door Step

The long awaited Argyle Goolsby album “Darken Your Door Step” Record hits the streets and we are all welcomed by something hard hitting and very much not what I personally expected.
I’ve known Mr. Goolsby for many years of my life, like 16 years to be exact, and always admired his ability to transition between genres. Since the disbanding of Blitzkid, a celebrated band in the scene that really paved way for the hardworking horror punk scene it’s plain to see that Gools hasn’t lost his mastery. This is a very versatile musician and he truly knows his way around any genre from 50’s croon style to thrash metal, and heavy hitting punk rock. His name is a staple in the horror punk community. The release of this album was a showcase to what he is actually capable of.

What I expected honestly was something more digital/synthesized and maybe almost slower and on the death rock side. Not sure why, but that’s what I expected and not at all what I was handed with this record. However what I did expect were songs about movies. Of which is a common thing in the horror punk genre, it’s rare if there is ever a song that isn’t titled or reference to a horror movie somewhere in it.

The opening is a bit confusing, but what intro isn’t? A number called “Midnight Approaches”. Then we get into “The Uninvited” right from the get go it’s heavy, fast and makes you start bobbin’ your head, and you know you want to fist pump in a live environment, odds are you’re doing it while cruisin’ in your car. Slide this right into “Ghost Light Waltz” another banger, that is straight to the point and punk as it gets. Listening to the lyrics, you can automatically tell what movie it’s about (Carnival of Souls). I’m not saying this is a bad thing, just predictable in most of the horror punk world.

I won’t do a track by track analysis you can do that yourself. It’s a pretty solid record, with a lot of catchy songs and they all go together so well that I listened to it 3x in a row and didn’t even realize it. Some say that’s bad, some say that’s good. I personally enjoy an album that can go and go and go. Because you know it’s decent album and the catchy demeanor of it keeps you there no matter how many times you listen to it consecutively. With all this said, check out the record it’s well worth it, and Goolsby showed that he is unstoppable and will carry on his own musical endeavors from the ashes of Blitzkid and keep doing what he’s doing. No matter what though it cannot be denied that this is a solid horror punk record.

Argyle Goolsby official site
Argyle Goolsby-Darken Your Door Step Full Album

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MUSIC REVIEW: Dead Cross – Dead Cross

MUSIC REVIEW: Dead Cross – Dead Cross

Dead-Cross-Dead-Cross_Cover / Photo Courtesy of Kings Road Merch.Every so often a band is formed of forces that are too powerful for real words. Dead Cross is one of these bands. Made up of Mike Patton; Mr. Bungle, Fantomas, Faith No More and like 400 other projects. Paired with Dave Lombardo; Slayer, Suicidal Tendencies, Grip Inc, Fantomas and like 400 other bands. Now add these two super powered, talented musicians with two more brilliant musicians Justin Pearson (The Locust, Retox, Head Wound City and more) and Michael Crain you have Dead Cross. A damn fine mixture of metal, weirdness, punk and whatever else they wish to call this project.

With the release of the self-titled album Dead Cross brings us a hard hitting thrashy, power house. With guitars that are just as thrashy as anything from the mid 80s, and of course the god father of double bass on drums, makes it all the more thrashy. Vocally and lyrically Dead Cross is another positive force with Mike Patton, the almighty vocalist of many levels and range. If you’ve listened to his bands Fantomas or Tomahawk then you’ll understand what’s going on here. Eccentric is the best word to describe what’s happening with Mr. Patton’s style. It fits, it works and Dead Cross has proven to be one of the best projects that has come out in a long time of this kind of combination of musicians.

Song by song flow right into one another as if it’s just “Ok guys we have a 25 minute set. Make this work.” Flawless transitioning from track to track, the self-titled album is something that I urge every metal and punk fan to listen to. There’s no influence here on what could be compared to if anything. It’s a standalone record that needs its own category honestly and that my friends is something that has been lost in the music world for a very long time.

  • Seizure Desist – The opening track to the album is the perfect introduction to the band and what this album has to offer you, from start to finish.
  • Idiopathic – A thrashy number throwback to the classic styling of the early days of thrash metal. Mike Patton shows a lot, not all but a lot of his vocal range on this track. Weird as usual that’s how he rolls.
  • Obedience School –Thrashy, yet harmonizing. You really hear that Lombardo style on this bad boy. Powerful and demonizing guitar styling that is to admired heavily.
  • Shillelagh – CIRCLE PIT!!
  • Bela Lugosi’s Dead – A slower number, very goth and dark as you would expect with such a title. I did not expect this honestly, and it’s great! Again though, showcasing the range and talent that each member brings to the table for Dead Cross.
  • Divine Filth – If Mike Patton sang for Slayer. Man, can you imagine? I love Slayer but let’s be honest Mike Patton would have made something a lot different there. This song is downright amazing.
  • Grave Slave – An evil number. Solidly strange and lyrically marvelous!
  • The Future Has Been Cancelled – More of the that Crossover style, circle pit music. Getchya’ Doc Martens on and get down to business. But then stop for some weirdness that makes no sense at all.
  • Gag Reflex: – A vocal heavy track, slower than all others on this record again though showing what Mike Patton is made of.
  • Church of the Mother Fuckers – The final track on the record. Starts out like some apocalyptic metal break down song, then ends just the same. Honestly the perfect ending to such a beast of a record.

Over all if you’re going to listen to something that is fast and full of energy then this record is for you. If given the chance to see Dead Cross live, I have zero doubt in my mind that it will be everything there needs to be in a live performance. I’d say you need to really get your pit shoes ready because this throwback to the way things used to be has brought back a sound that has been long forgotten to everyone in the rock and metal world washing away true talent with style. Dead Cross stay true to the roots of heavy music, and produced a record that to me sits right next to the classics as one of the best albums to ever hit the scene. Doing things in DIY fashion, Dead Cross is on See the link below, purchase this record and enjoy every millisecond of it. You will not be disappointed.

Dead Cross on

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HORROR NEWS: Balsac the Jaws of Death plagued with Myelofibrosis

HORROR NEWS: Balsac the Jaws of Death plagued with Myelofibrosis

The last few years for the shock rock/metal band Gwar has not been all the best in the way of luck. However, we can say that Gwar though will keep on despite what’s been thrown at them making them, by far, the strongest band in the galaxy.
In 2011, Gwar guitarist Cory Smoot, known by his stage name Flattus Maximus, was found deceased of a heart attack while on tour. Then, in 2014, the greatest frontman to ever take the stage Dave Brockie, known to Gwar fans as Oderus Urungus was found dead in his room, due to a heroin overdose. None of this stopped Gwar from carrying on. One thing that they have always done, is kept going despite the odds. Flattus was replaced by Pustulus Maximus, and Oderus role was filled by Blothar which was the original Beefcake The Mighty. Gwar has been through a few changes over the 30+ years of their time on earth. Now, faced with not another change, but another medical issue within the band's members.
Mike Derks aka Balsac the Jaws of Death is facing a disease called myelofibrosis which is a bone marrow disorder that causes the body’s blood cells to not produce properly. This may have come as a surprise to most people. I know for sure it did for me, I got to see Gwar perform on the warped tour, and Balsac was not on a few dates due to this disease causing him great pain and other physical issues. I was wondering why I didn’t see him on stage, and now I understand.
Over the next several months, Derks will be undergoing some major medical treatment, including blood transfusions, constant monitoring, and eventually a bone marrow transplant in which chemotherapy will be administered to rid the body of the diseased marrow, and then the good marrow put in. None of this monitoring and the transfusion of blood will stop Derks or Gwar, as he is still going on tour with the band this fall/winter and will be utilizing various hospital organizations across the country to monitor his condition.
I love music, I love playing music, but if this were me I’d say, “Fuck it”, and not play until it’s all taken care of. Then again, I’m not a bad ass like the guys in Gwar, and I don’t have fans either. HA! Derks has teamed up with Love Hope Strength to get people in the know, get people to donate and gain knowledge of this condition as well as other bone marrow diseases that people face. You can visit and contribute any way you can.
From all of us at House of Tortured Souls as fans, and people with hearts that care about our fellow man, we wish Mike Derks/Balsac Jaws of Death a speedy recovery and issue a thank you for all you do, keeping the ball rolling and having such a positive outlook on the situation at hand.
Posted by Schock in EXCLUSIVE, 0 comments
MUSIC REVIEW: JasonXVoorhees – Horror Edge (2016)

MUSIC REVIEW: JasonXVoorhees – Horror Edge (2016)

These dudes really know how to bring forth a record that is HARDCORE! Extremely influenced by black metal, hardcore, punk rock, and pretty much everything bloody all the while being a straight edge band, these guys fucking hit it hard!
With an ominous intro dark and divine as you'd expect from any horror based band, it lays precedence to the album ahead. With an obvious metal and horror influence, they let it shine through. Some of the mixing with the gang vocals could have been mixed and maybe reverbed out to sound like there were 5,000,000 people instead of five, but whatever to that. It doesn't take away from the fact they get what they want to say out there and as hard and heavy as can be.
Track by track it kicks you in the face with the hardcore sound. "What's Your Favorite Scary Movie" is probably hands down my favorite song on the record. The punk rock vibe is definitely what I'm used to and what I listen to on a regular basis with the upbeat "skanking" style that you can easily dance to, or stand there like an emo and just bob your head while looking at your shoes. No matter what your secular division of life or who you are, it will get you moving. Then "Still Following" comes on, and it's the same ordeal — fast hard and punk rock...except with a break down that's heavy and catchy all at the same time. You can't beat this style of music they're going on with. The mixture of metal, punk, and hardcore is just fantastic with a perfect combination of all that gives you something for all walks of the underground world. Want them to play a punk show? No problem. Hardcore? Easy. Metal? For sure. They can achieve all and perform to every crowd with ease.
Like all horror punk or horror-influenced bands, song titles and references are there for the songs either in title or lyrics. The true sound of their influences shines through everything from AFI and Misfits to Leviathan, Slayer, Mayhem and even more punk style. It's clear that JXV knows what they want, and their sound all over the spectrum conveys what's what with this band. Working closely with Rikk and Cal of JxV on a few projects artistically and accompanying them on some comps put out by Optimist/Pessimist records which is run by Rikk, I can say they're amazing cats all around. Being a fellow straight edge myself, it's awesome to have a family like this in the horror world. The first time I saw their title "Horror Edge", I knew these guys were either going to be cock suckers and not worth befriending or they're going to be brothers. Lucky for me, the latter was the case. I highly recommend that you listen to Jason X Voorhees and support them in every way. Even if you're not into straight edge life, if you're a music fan, metal head, hardcore, punk...what the fuck ever. This band is for you.
JxV on Optimist/Pessimist Records - Bandcamp
Schock’s Top 5 Albums for the Halloween Mood

Schock’s Top 5 Albums for the Halloween Mood

I’m going to run through five albums to put you in the Halloween spirit. We all love music, and we all have stuff we are used to. I’m always on the hunt for something new and fresh, so let me help you out this Halloween season. You cannot go wrong with my Top 5 Albums That Scream HALLOWEEN when listened to any time of the year.
Misfits — Collection 2: This one in particular because A) It’s got the song “Halloween” on the album. It’s the original incarnation of the Misfits and a staple in any horror fans collection.Misfits_-_Collection_II_cover / Fair use doctrine.

Mister Monster — Over Your Dead Body: This album is so fucking good. The whole vibe of the record gives you a cold chill and makes you want to just sit by a campfire to warm up while crooning your way into your partner’s pants.Mister Monster-Over Your Dead Body / Fair use doctrine.
AFI — All Hallow’s EP and Black Sails in the Sunset EP: There was a time when AFI was absolutely amazing and these two albums... (I’m using two here because there are only 4 tracks on the All Hallow’s EP.) These two albums set a nice relaxed vibe that always, for some reason, get me thinking about walking around, kicking leaves, and enjoying the cool air. The song “Fall Children” on All Hallow’s EP is, by far, my favorite Halloween song ever written.AFI-AllHallow's and Black Sails / Fair use doctrine.
Silent Horror — Self Titled: This is a record that is from start to finish spooky and fun and screams horror and Halloween all the way through. I put this next to Mister Monster’s OYDB as one of the best horror punk records ever.Silent Horror - Self Titled / Fair use doctrine.
The Spook — Some Like It Dead: A band from the land of Germany. The Spook is another horror punk band that not only needs to be listened to, also needs to be understood. This album gives you the feeling of horror and Halloween – from the super scary factor right down to the whimsy and fun of Halloween. The Spook delivers this on this record.The Spook-Some Like It Dead / Fair use doctrine.
So there you have it the Schock TOP 5 Albums to put you in the mood for Halloween. Find them, listen and enjoy.
Posted by Schock in HALLOWEEN, MUSIC REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments
MOVIE REVIEW: IT (2017) (1 of…???)

MOVIE REVIEW: IT (2017) (1 of…???)

When we are kids, we watch movies, read books, and hear stories that we carry with us throughout our lives. IT, the super long novel by Stephen King, is one that King’s Constant Readers, as well as most horror fans, have carried with us through our youth. The original adaptation, released in 1990, as a miniseries, started with the youth of Derry, Maine, and ended with the adults when Pennywise returned 27 years later. Of course, the time the film was made plays a large factor in how it was portrayed. So we have to look at it that way in regards to content and exactly what boundaries could be pushed and what couldn’t. Since it was a TV miniseries and the rules were different then, IT really was a different adaptation altogether.
Looking back on the original, I have always felt it to be rather boring and a little too much on the cheesy side. This opinion does not reflect on the actors themselves, but on the direction and the script. I do not speak for everyone, but for me, the story could have been told in a way that wasn’t so much like an after school special about talking to strangers and more like an actual horror film. In other words, the miniseries was like a Goosebumps version compared to what we are allowed to see now in films. IT was very kid friendly so to speak, and for the time it was made, it was definitely on the verge of causing concern for the people of the world. Tim Curry is a great actor and did very well putting that scare into the youth of the early 90s. As horror fans, we need to go into this re-envisioning of the story with fresh eyes and a fresh mind - regardless of who you are. Try to avoid comparing and contrasting both films. And now, on to how this new movie, which was not only a better portrayal but also much scarier.
When I walk into the theater, I was actually amazed that we had fancy seating, all recliner like and cozy. That was a bit weird to me as I’m used to the poor people theaters with sticky floors and immensely uncomfortable seating. Big kudos to United Artists theater in Fishers, Indiana for being awesome in that regard.
I am pretty sure there were 20 minutes of previews, and a couple of them looked really good. Saw 8, though, that horse has been beaten to death. Give it up already. Mother is, I’m pretty sure, a spin-off of Rosemary’s Baby. I can’t for the life of me remember the two that actually looked really good though. I’ll figure it out later. Ha!
Spoiler warning skull_smallRight from the start, the movie gets you all hyped up because it’s set in 1988-89 which, for many of the movie-going public, is when we were young and have some of our earliest memories of life. Those that are into that whole holding on to nostalgia, this is perfect for that. The soundtrack alone was fantastic, and the fashion, lingo, and settings definitely invoke the late 80s. The movie starts with Billy (Jaeden Lieberher) and Georgie Denbrough (Jackson Robert Scott) in a bedroom making a paper boat with Georgie super excited to get it going. Bill instructs Georgie to get some wax to waterproof the paper boat and allow it to float. The foreshadowing comes immediately upon Georgie entering the basement, scared but carrying a 1980s-era walkie talkie that squealed and made a lot of noise to communicate with Billy on the whereabouts of the wax. Yes, that’s important to the film.
Not five minutes later, Georgie is running down the street chasing the paper boat in the rain, but the boat is at the mercy of the water and quickly falls into the a sewer drain. Pennywise the clown (Bill Skarsgård) appears in the drain with his famously evil grin and gains the attention of Georgie, who doesn’t really find it odd that a clown is just hangin’ ‘round in the sewer. There was some struggle, some blood, and a lot of screaming. I’ll just say this: those who haven’t seen the original or read the book, that’s all you need to know; however, those who have seen or read the original know just how fast IT jumps the gun and gets bloody fast.
Flash forward to 1989, almost a year after Georgie goes missing, and the kids are all leaving school. Each one is focused on for character development, a really cool and quick way for the movie to get past all the rhetoric and get to the action on what is to come. The bully, Henry Bowers (Nicholas Hamilton), and his crew terrorize all of the “Losers Club” and just sets a tone that you may believe he is working with Pennywise to abduct kids so that he is safe from harm. There wasn’t a lot of storytelling in this film it was really straight on, get down to business. Pennywise shows up to each kid that was focused on in Derry, and presenting fears to them that could cause them to panic and freeze, enabling Pennywise to snatch them up. What he didn’t realize is that they’re stronger than that. As the stories cross together, the Losers Club all hang out and become closer enjoying some of their summer. It is finally opened up that these things are happening. Each kid giving a brief story of what they saw. Stan Uris (Wyatt Oleff) sees a creepy painting that frightens him, and the woman in it comes to life. Michael Hanlon (Chosen Jacobs), who is home schooled, sees Pennywise hanging in a meat locker. Beverly Marsh has the infamous drain incident where blood comes shooting out like – not unlike Johnny Depp’s death scene in A Nightmare on Elm Street. Eddie Kaspbrak, my favorite character, sees a leper, and Billy, of course, sees Georgie. Ben Hanscom (Jeremy Ray Taylor) also has an encounter. Richie Tozier (Finn Wolfhard) is the only one who (I think) had not seen Pennywise beforehand. Richie makes it a point to mention this as well. Is he funny and smart sassy? Very much so and way much more so than the Seth Green was in his portrayal. Richie really sets the comedic tone for the movie always cracking jokes about sex, penis size, and just generally making fun of everyone. I can relate to this guy pretty well. For example, when Ben gets cut up and beaten, Richie says something about him bleeding Hamburger Helper. HA! So this kept the lightheartedness pretty well throughout the movie even though there were dire things happening all around them.
After a few dozen jump scares and plot development, the kids come together and discover that the key to finding him is in the Well House, which we see is an abandoned and almost certainly condemned house that probably shouldn’t be standing. Eddie, Billy, and Richie man up and go inside to look around. With some fear tactics and an encounter with Pennywise, Bev comes in and stabs the clown in the head giving some wiggle room for the boys to get out of the there. I know I’m vaguely telling what’s up. But y’all don’t need too much info because this is where IT really takes off.
So, with all of that said, the movie from beginning to end was fantastic - and we actually see who and what floats and where “down here” is (which always bugged me about the miniseries). Finally, the Losers Club comes together and decides that if IT comes back, then they will return and fight it again, leaving room for a sequel of course. However, I don’t feel like it needs one. Still, ending like with a “just in case” situation was good after everything played out as it did and they got free. The ending was pretty solid and could be left standing as is. To me, this movie works a standalone film on its own accord. Not only was the direction solid, the script excellent, and the acting on point, but it was seriously a great scary movie. The way I see it is that the original was something thrown together because someone had an idea, and at the time was a good one. This film, though, had a lot of thought and time put in into it, which gave it a better quality story and made it much scarier, creating a fearfest that I believe ANY horror fan can appreciate.
Check out what some other attendees thought of IT in my video below.

EDITOR'S NOTE: As many staff members are attending IT, there will be more reviews to come. Please stand by.
-Woofer McWooferson, Editor-in-Chief
Posted by Schock in MOVIE REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 1 comment
MEMORIAL: Dave Brockie

MEMORIAL: Dave Brockie

Dave Brockie was born August 30, 1963, and passed away on March 23, 2014. We knew him best as Oderus Urungus, lead vocalist of the shock rock extreme metal band Gwar, but he also assumed the role of vocalist and bass player in bands such as X-Cops and Dave Brockie Experience (DBX).
Dave Brockie/Oderus UrungusDave Brockie left a legacy that took Shock Rock and turned into something of a spectacle. In the beginning of the conception of Gwar, the band saw a lot of flack from the music. Bands like Alice Cooper, Kiss, David Bowie, and Black Sabbath had long embraced their dark sides and employed theatrics in stage performances. Gwar, though, took it to a level that defied all that had been seen before. Gwar literally redefined the concept of theatrical musical performances designed to shock and entertain people. Remaining as the only original member of Gwar before his passing, this legacy truly brought fans something to anticipate and admire whenever the name Gwar was uttered.
Personally, I have seen Gwar 13 times in my life, and I’ll see them every time they come around. During Dave Brockie’s time on earth and as Oderus Urungus, he seriously was the best front man of any band I have ever seen live - and believe me I have seen a LOT of bands in my time. He had a charisma that immediately inspired the crowd to go wild. Not only could he actually sing and had an amazing voice, his on stage antics brought weren’t just for the audience’s amusement. Gwar and Brockieincluded fans in the show, and the fans loved it. From the decapitation of presidential figures and celebrities to jerking his cuttle fish and covering, no…layering the audience in blood, bile, and whatever else they come up with, Gwar always left the audience satisfied. This, partnered with the giant earthworm that ate an audience member (and who knows what happened after that), guaranteed a truly memorable show.
A Gwar show was purely amazing on multiple levels, but when I reflect on all the times I have seen Gwar, I realize the extent to which Oderus fueled that. Gwar, both as a whole and as individual artists, are extremely talented, and original Beefcake, Michael Bishop, ultimately assumed the role of the lead vocalist as Blothar – knowing full well that he had some big shoes to fill after Brockie’s untimely death. Having seen Gwar with Blothar on lead vocals three times now, I can say with confidence that they are still Gwar and are making Dave/Oderusproud. Speaking of which, they have a new album coming out soon titled The Blood of the Gods set for release later this year. House of Tortured Souls will, of course, be reviewing it, so don’t forget to check back for that.
Dave Brockie Experience - Diarrhea of a MadmanBack to Dave Brockie. I also recall getting the opportunity to see DBX live many (many many MANY) years ago at some hole in Muncie, Indiana. Being low key like that, without the entire hullabaloo of Gwar, was a real treat. It was just Dave Brockie and the rest of his band in action - the stripped down, punk rock, roots style. It was an honor just to be in the audience - the jokes didn’t stop, the talent was immense, and the showmanship was godlike. Dave Brockie was not only immensely talented, the best showman in all of rock n’ roll, and a lyrical genius, he was also a genuinely nice guy to everyone he met. I had the opportunity to shake his hand during this DBX performance, and that was better than meeting any other famous person. His friends loved him with a love that could move mountains, which can be seen if you watch the Gwar-B-Q following his death. Just watching through the computer touched my heart with some super strength as the love for Davewas evident and overwhelming. We can say that he was not only loved and cherished, but he was also idolized for his music, his art, and himself as a human - and as an alien overlord who brutally murdered the Republican party and the douche bags that plague this world.
Today, we here at House of Tortured Souls celebrate the day that Dave Brockie/Oderus Urungus was gifted to the world. We encourage you to pop in a Gwar, DBX, or X-Copsalbum and bask in the beauty that was Dave Brockie’s amazing talent. His legacy and creativity will never die as long Gwar keeps going, as long as we not only support the underground music scene that Dave Brockie held close to his heart, and as long as we keep the horror alive! Dave/Oderus, we in the underground love you, brother. You inspired us all to be creative and to push boundaries in what we do. I can honestly say that without you here, life is not the same. We miss you, we will always miss you, but you are still alive in our hearts.
If you wish to follow Gwar, buy merchandise, or see them on tour and whatever else going on in the world of the Scumdogs of the Universe, visit GWAR ONLINE.
In Remembrance: Tobe Hooper

In Remembrance: Tobe Hooper

Tobe Hooper: Gone But Not Forgotten

It is with heavy heart that we report the passing of the ever so great Tobe Hooper - the man who brought us many, MANY great horror flicks, such as The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, Poltergeist, The Fun House, Lifeforce, Salem's Lot, and Toolbox Murders - among others. His legacy of horror films are what spawned fear and intrigue on several levels for all of us here at House of Tortured Souls. We will be paying tribute to him, so stay tuned to find out how his work has influenced our work and our lives.
Here's a list of his directorial credits alone:
  • Djinn (2013)
  • Destiny Express Redux (2009)
  • Masters of Horror (TV Series) - “The Damned Thing” (2006)
  • Masters of Horror (TV Series) - “Dance of the Dead” (2005)
  • Mortuary (2005)
  • Toolbox Murders (2004)
  • Taken (TV Mini-Series) (1 episode) - “Beyond the Sky” (2002)
  • Night Visions (TV Series) (2 episodes) - “Cargo” (2002)
  • Night Visions (TV Series) (2 episodes) - “The Maze” (2002)
  • Crocodile (Video) (2000)
  • The Others (TV Series) (1 episode) - “Souls on Board” (2000)
  • Dark Skies (TV Series) (1 episode) - “The Awakening” (1996)
  • Nowhere Man (TV Series) (2 episodes) - “Turnabout” (1995)
  • Nowhere Man (TV Series) (2 episodes) - “Absolute Zero” (1995)
  • The Apartment Complex (TV Movie) (1999)
  • Prey (TV Series) (1 episode) - “Hungry for Survival”: Unaired Pilot (1998)
  • Perversions of Science (TV Series) (1 episode) - “Panic” (1997)
  • The Mangler (1995)
  • Body Bags (TV Movie) (segment "Eye") (1993)
  • Night Terrors (1993)
  • Tales from the Crypt (TV Series) (1 episode) - “Dead Wait” (1991)
  • Haunted Lives: True Ghost Stories (TV Mini-Series documentary) (1 episode) - “Ghosts R Us/Legend of Kate Morgan/School Spirit” (1991)
  • I'm Dangerous Tonight (TV Movie) (1990)
  • Spontaneous Combustion (1990)
  • Freddy's Nightmares (TV Series) (1 episode) - “No More Mr. Nice Guy” (1988)
  • The Equalizer (TV Series) (1 episode) - “No Place Like Home” (1988)
  • Amazing Stories (TV Series) (1 episode) - “Miss Stardust” (1987)
  • The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986)
  • Invaders from Mars (1986)
  • Lifeforce (1985)
  • Billy Idol: Dancing with Myself (Video short) (1983)
  • Poltergeist (1982)
  • The Fun House (1981)
  • Salem's Lot (TV Movie) (1979)
  • The Dark (replaced by John Cardos, uncredited) (1979)
  • Eaten Alive (1976)
  • The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)
  • Eggshells (1969)
  • The Heisters (Short) (1964)
Now, pop in a classic, grab your favorite snack, and celebrate the scares that he gave us.

Poster Gallery of Some of Tobe Hooper's Films

Click for larger image.
Posted by Schock in TRIBUTE, 0 comments
Happy Birthday, Glenn Danzig!

Happy Birthday, Glenn Danzig!

What can be said about the mastermind who brought us the genre that merged from the early punk days, creating its very own world of mastery? Today we wish a very happy birthday to the man who, with his merry band of, dare I say...Misfits, spawned not only the subgenre of Horror punk, which lead way to many great bands over the years, but which also gave the metal world something to be desired.
June 23rd 1955 - 62 years ago - the legend was born in to this world. The parents of Glenn Anzalone probably had no clue that they had just opened Pandora’s box of inspiration and gave birth to the future leader of the underground.
It’s no secret that Misfits, Samhain, and Danzig have inspired many legendary bands and artists over the years. Not only did they inspire such bands as Metallica, Rob Zombie, and Pantera, they also influenced punk rock and hardcore acts such as No Use for a Name, Sick of it All, Hatebreed. and many, many more. The horror punk genre spun out of control causing a worldwide wave of bands such as Mister Monster, Blitzkid, The Crypt Keeper 5, The Other, Crimson Ghosts, The Spook, and countless others in the genre. It’s safe to say that the extent of Glenn Danzig’s legacy reaches far beyond any one genre as well as an outreach that has inspired people all around the world to either write music, stories, or make movies with some piece of Danzig’s legacy in mind while doing so.
The Danzig legacy doesn’t only affect the bands Glenn himself has been a part of, but, as mentioned above, has brought to the mainstream many popular punk and metal acts. Over the past 40 years, the world of underground metal, punk, and hardcore has evolved to where we can go anywhere - be it a local show full of preteens and novice musicians or a well known hardcore/Metal show, you’ll see someone representing either a shirt, patch, or cover song. It’s the norm these days to either have a Misfits or Danzig tattoo. It’s normal for even pop punk bands to cover “All Murder, All Guts…”, and it’s normal for anyone to sing along to “Mother” even if they don’t know who it is.
For someone who’s seemingly unknown to the pop scene, Glenn Danzig was brought to us 62 years ago and, believe it or not, you know this man and you’ve listened to his legacy. You may not have heard his music personally, but in the wake of his inspirational fury, you’ve heard Danzig-influenced music and you’ve showed him love by representing the countless bands he has inspired over the last 40 years.
So on this day June 23rd, do what you do, and show some respect for the man that brought you your favorite bands, the man who saw angry teens bitching about being teenagers and playing loud annoying power chords and said, “Ya know what? I’m going to write a song about Return of the Fly. I’m going to write another about Halloween. Why? Because I’m Motherfucking Glenn Danzig, that’s why!” The world would be a far different place without this genius of a man. So, Mr. Glenn Danzig, here’s to you, brother! Happy Birthday, from the whole world, that you helped create.
Posted by Schock in EXCLUSIVE, 1 comment
EXCLUSIVE: Misfits: More Shows Possible

EXCLUSIVE: Misfits: More Shows Possible

header-misfit / Fair use doctrine.Here's a quickie for the world of Horror Punk, Punk and Metal. I have been seeing around the nets that Mr. Glenn Danzig himself is not ruling out the idea of some more Misfits shows in the future. With a new Danzig album out that's very reminiscent of DANZIG II: Lucifige, he's kinda got a fifteenth wind and really giving off a vibe like he's ready for some more action. Not a whole lot mind you; no tours for Danzig or the Misfits. Play the show, fly back home kind of deal. So what does this entail exactly? Well, in his words to Rolling Stone magazine:
"I'm open to possibly doing some more shows. I don't want to tour, but if it happens and everything lines up properly, I would imagine there'd probably be a couple more shows. I don't know when, but I'll keep an open mind."
To follow this, you could almost feel him smile when he looked back on the old days of punk rock. Being not only a music fan, but musician it was very easy to relate to these comments. Not only on what he said about punk rock, but the music of today.
"No, we've all been doing this for a long time. It's really funny. I remember when punk bands first started, you couldn't get anybody to be in a punk band because they hated it. There was the whole thing that punk musicians couldn't play. And I listen to stuff we do, and I listen to this crap that's out now, and it's like, they can't even play their instruments. They just go up there and pretend, like, Milli Vanilli–style, and they get paid. Wait ... Milli Vanilli got kicked out of the music industry for doing this, and there's even metal bands doing it. But bands go up onstage and it's all on tape. They're not even performing. If I paid money to go to a concert, and the band was up there puppet-showing it, I would be so fucking pissed off. So anyway, there's my comment on that."
So although he's willing, it won't be a tour so create some sort of savings plan now, and possibly take out a second and/or 3rd mortgage. Travel will be imminent and if it's a festival of some sort $$$$$$$ will be needed. After seeing the reunion last September in Chicago I can say it was worth EVERY GOD DAMN PENNY! If any of this reigns true, you'll want to see this I swear to Vincent Price you will not want to miss such a spectacle.
More to come on this as we get it. Keep your ears to the streets, because in the underground we have all the best bands.
Keep it creepy!
Posted by Schock in EXCLUSIVE, 0 comments
MUSIC REVIEW: Danzig – Skeletons (2015)

MUSIC REVIEW: Danzig – Skeletons (2015)

We all know and love Mr. Glenn Danzig, the man behind the almighty Misfits, Samhain, and Danzig. What most suspected and read in past interviews is that he was heavily influenced by the likes of Elvis Presley and Jim Morrison. I mean, he’s like the evil version of both that’s wrapped into a ball of energy that, honestly, after seeing him live a couple of times, I think cannot be matched by a lot of people in his age bracket. So he brings us now Danzig Skeletons.
For many years we all waited for an album to come out in which Danzig would cover some of heaviest influences. Finally, as of 2015 he did, and it’s a glorious record. Listening to Glenn speak in interviews and with the unexpected reunion of the Misfits 2 Riotfest gigs, you can see he’s really getting nostalgic and so an album like this is pretty cool to have on his resume, paying homage to some things and introducing fans of his to music they may not have heard prior. A couple of tracks from some B film biker flicks really threw me off, but when you listen to the original versions, it makes sense as to why he would throw his particular style into it.
Danzig - Skeletons / Fair use doctrine.
So let’s get down to business:
Devil’s AngelsThis was taken from the theme song of an old biker movie. Straight up I had hopes that maybe he would revisit the O.G. punk rock sound of The Misfits with some of this, and this one did it. A very well done number with some throw back punk rock that made us all fall in love with Mr. Danzig.
SatanAnother number that has that old time biker film jive to it. I had never heard of this, so I researched the original and found it to be mega slow, and, I don’t know, I always thought bikers were supposed to be hard and mean, and this didn’t do it for me. However, good ol’ Glenn really threw in some of that bluesy metal vibe and smashed it. Definitely made it more convincing to the reader.
Let Yourself GoAn Elvis number that isn’t very well known unless you’re a die hard fan and not just a fair weather Presley fan. Really, there’s no difference. Danzig nailed this one PERFECTLY.
N.I.B.By far my favorite Black Sabbath song, and I’ve heard many people cover this one and even considered covering it myself. I can’t say it’s my favorite version, but it’s definitely in the top 3. It’s slowed down a bit, and Danzig puts his own spin on it, of course, and really turned it into a Danzig song. If you hadn’t known Sabbath was the original artist, you’d think it was a Danzig tune for sure.
Lord of the ThighsAerosmith... uh, yeah, you read that correctly. An older Aerosmith number that was great originally, and then Glenn gets a hold of it and adds that metal flair and really gave it some justice. I’m sure anyone who knows the original and then hears this will absolutely love it. Putting that Danzig twist to it really makes a difference in the song’s dynamic.
Action WomanAnother song I had never heard prior to this, originally recorded by some band called The Litter. I felt, after listening to the original, that if Danzig wasn’t in the punk scene, this would have been his band. No doubt about it, he took this song and again made it a tune of his own with the carried out notes and guitar squeals. It has Danzig 1 all over it.
Rough BoyWhat’s funny about this whole record is there are songs by bands that you’re not going to expect. This one is brought to us by ZZ Top. I was not expecting to hear this; again, though, it’s very well done and perfectly arranged, really paying great homage to the original. I don’t care for ZZ Top, but to see what’s up, I listened to it and found it a good representation.
With a Girl Like YouDanzig frequently can be incoherent in his lyrical projection. When I listened to this one, I thought that’s what was going on here, but nope, the original has the same vibe. I’m not so stoked about this one as the others, the distorted bass really throws off the vibe of the song and kind of gets annoying after 45 seconds.
Find SomebodyThis is another tune that sounds as if they were dying down towards the end of writing. Not very well arranged and sounds as if the whole band may be falling asleep. I’ve heard this one in original form a few dozen times, and it doesn’t really pay homage as well as they could have.
Crying in the RainOriginally recorded by The Everly Brothers, it was an amazing song then, and the way Danzig recorded it is fantastic. Light instruments and some echoed out vocals. It’s a fantastic way to end this album.
Overall, Danzig did a fantastic job with this record. A few songs could have been represented better, but who am I to say? They stayed true to a bluesy but metal style and picked songs that represented the Danzig sound.
Posted by Schock in MUSIC REVIEWS, REVIEWS, 0 comments