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W.A.S.P. - Babylon

  by Peter Allison

published: 12 / 12 / 2009

W.A.S.P. - Babylon
Label: Demolition Records
Format: CD


Unadventurous and routine-sounding latest album from durable Los Angeles metal act, W.A.S.P.

I am only a recent convert to W.A.S.P. after listening to their impressive previous album, 'Dominator'. With 'Babylon', W.A.S.P. returns to the classic heavy metal theme of the apocalypse, which this Los Angeles four-piece tackle with their usual skill. For those looking for the political undertones that proliferated their previous album, then prepare to be disappointed. Yet, this does not mean Babylon is necessarily a poor album. Opening with a generic first track called 'Crazy' that eerily echoes the 80's hair-metal genre, the music ramps up with the far more impressive 'Live to Die Another Day'. It then retains a classic metal format for the rest of the album. Whilst 'Burn' isn't too bad (it is not great either), 'Into the Fire' is an excellent track that acts as a break in the album, with a beautifully melodic prose. The final half of the album has 'Thunder Red' seamlessly blend into 'Seas of Confusion'. The quieter penultimate track, 'Godless Run', is the calm before the storm of the concluding song, 'Promised Land'. My comment regarding 'Burn' I suspect highlights my disappointment with the album, as it is structurally an almost exact copy of 'Dominator', albeit a less complex one. There is very little that is new in this album, and whilst existing fans may appreciate its consistenty, I for one like to see growth and development. I suspect that this latest release will be best enjoyed live. The apocalypse is a common subject matter within the metal genre, and the conclusions that vocalist Blackie Lawless brings are nothing new. This lack of adventure is further reinforced in regards to the stagnant album structure that leaves the listener wanting more. Blackie Lawless is an undeniably excellent singer, and W.AS.P. are an accomplished band, so my disappointment unfortunately colours my opinions of this album. Overall, this is a decidedly average release by a truly exceptional and well established band that I hope will be more adventurous and experimental again in the future.

Track Listing:-
1 Crazy
2 Live to Die Another Day
3 Babylon's Burning
4 Burn (Deep Purple Cover)
5 Into the Fire
6 Thunder Red
7 Seas of Fire
8 Godless Run
9 Promised Land (Chuck Berry Cover)

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