Saturday, August 24, 2013

Saturday Shuffle: W.A.S.P., Lamb of God, BLS, Tim Owens, Pantera

All metal, all the time this week, though a couple of songs are on the softer side...

W.A.S.P., “I Don’t Need No Doctor.” From the album Inside the Electric Circus (1986). This was one of the weakest releases in the W.A.S.P. catalog, and unlike their other 1980s albums, I very rarely give it a listen these days. This is one of the better songs from it, though.

Lamb of God, “Choke Sermon.” From the album Wrath (2009). After being a huge fan of Sacrament, a record that I know many fans don’t care for, I was slightly disappointed in Wrath. It was a good record, but didn’t stack up to my ear. Listening to “Choke Sermon,” I like it, but it doesn’t stick with me.

Black Label Society, “Time Waits for No One.” From the album Order of the Black (2010). Zakk Wylde, surprisingly, is an amazing balladeer. He’s one of the few metal artists that consistently delivers ballads that I want to hear. There’s always a heavy Southern rock influence, and often an unlikely influence of Elton John, who Wylde has admitted was one of his musical inspirations. This is another winner.

Tim “Ripper” Owens, “It is Me.” From the album Play My Game (2009). I am a huge fan of Tim Owens, which is why I find it so frustrating that his solo album wasn’t all that great. “It Is Me” is a heavy, bashing song that was one of the best tunes on the album, but like many of Owens’ songs it’s often a little awkward lyrically.

Pantera, “Planet Caravan.” From the album Far Beyond Driven. (1993). Can Pantera cover one of Black Sabbath’s softest, spaciest tunes? Hell yes, they can. The extremely faithful cover of the trippy song was perfect for Phil Anselmo’s vocals, and the late “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott absolutely shreds on the smooth, soulful leads. The extended solo on the track might be one of his finest moments.

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