"In Concert '87 The Abigail Tour"
The devilish Dane is back with live recordings taken from the 1987 ABIGAIL world tour. The sound is nothing short of immaculate, especially for a live LP. Although there's a disclaimer from The King that all mistakes are included and no overdubs, only thing I can hear is a little monitor hum. On the tunes, whether you agree with The King's religious leanings (at least he doesn't try to shove it down your throat like some "people") you have to admit that he does have a set of pipes. Standouts are the beautifully arranged Mercyful Fate tracks "COME TO THE SABBATH" and "THE PORTRAIT." A solo by master-shredder Andy La Rocque on "THE POSSESSION" and on "ABIGAIL" a solo by drummer extraordinaire Mikkey Dee (The King made a mistake letting this guy go.) Freak out everyone with "NO PRESENTS FOR CHRISTMAS." If by chance you haven't heard King Diamond (been living in a cave?) this is the one to start with, or if you have, get it to go with your other Mercyful Fate/King Diamond collections.
"Decade of Aggression"
What can you say about these guys? Probably the most uncompromising (yeah!) of all the Thrash bands. Slayer lets loose with what they're world renowned for...their live shows. Every legendary track (with only a few exceptions) is included on this double-cassette set. It seems to me that on the first tape when it comes to leads, Kerry King (whose playing is much improved) dominated and on the second tape Jeff Hanneman (chief songwriter) shreds. When you have seen and heard 'em both ripping-out when they're both on, it's a total mind trip! Combined with Tom Araya and Dave Lombardo, "WHAT MORE COULD YOU ASK FOR?" Since this is a double tape set, for some it may be an expensive package, but if you're a true Slayer fan you'll find some way to scrounge up the loot. DO IT!
CAMPAIN OF HATE
These Morgantown, WV guys have great potential if they would just re-think some of their lyrics. Their demo starts out o.k. with an intro song "CAMPAIN OF HATE." Then they get a bit rightwingish with "STREET PEOPLE." Their message to the homeless is "Get a fuckin' job, at least take a bath." Do we really need this? With dickheads like David Puke (oops, I mean Duke) and Pat Buchanan spewing out their Nazi bullshit. Despite this C.O.H. has the potential to be great. Vocalist Jake Ponceroff is set in the Johnny "Rotten" Lydon and Keith Morris vein. Guitarist Mike Robertson's leads are a little weak (replacement maybe?). Guitarist Chris Reed supplies the krunch and bassist Todd Corley is as good as anyone I've heard. On drums Richie Goodwin is rapid fire. Back to the songs, and they've got some good ones like "AIR RAID" an anti-war song, and "WASTE OF TIME." Then, my favorite track, the awesome "JOHNNY CRASH" an anti-drinking and driving song. Another standout is "SOMETHING'S OUT THERE" a real spooky tune. Other highlights include "BIG FUCKIN' DEAL" and "SPLATTER MY HEAD" a D.R.I. like outburst followed with "KILL VILLAGE" another great anti-war song. Then some more bullshit with "RAP" an anti-Rap song. Don't you think this is a bit out of it since bands like Suicidal, Anthrax and rappers like P.E. and Ice-T are breaking down walls and stressing one point only, WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER! I can see why Ice-Cube says the things he does because he's living it, but when C.O.H. spouts off about the homeless being from a university town, I don't think they have. Hey, with all the major lay-offs it could now happen to anyone. So in closing, musically they're great. Lyrically, they're awesome at times, shallow at others, but definitely worth checking out. For more info contact: C.O.H. c/o Richie Goodwin, 156 Pleasant St., Apt. #4, Morgantown, WV 26505
ALSO WORTH YOUR TIME AND MONEY DEPT.: GWAR (Metal Blade Records) is scheduled to ravage the planet Earth once again in February/March with their tentatively entitled third LP, "AMERICA MUST BE DESTROYED." Check these Scumdogs out.