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Misfits

Genuinely shocking or tasteless, campy fun? It was sometimes hard to tell which way the Misfits wanted to be taken, and the immense cultfollowing thathas grown up in the years after their actual existence (1977-1983) seems divided in its own assessment. It certainly wasn't the Misfits'musicianship --which was as crude as the recording quality of most of their oeuvre -- that endeared them to so many, although Glenn Danzig possessed oneof the mostdistinctive and tuneful bellows in hardcore punk. Rather, it was Danzig's penchant for catchy, anthemic melodies, often delivered at warpspeed, and ...read more

Genuinely shocking or tasteless, campy fun? It was sometimes hard to tell which way the Misfits wanted to be taken, and the immense cultfollowing thathas grown up in the years after their actual existence (1977-1983) seems divided in its own assessment. It certainly wasn't the Misfits'musicianship --which was as crude as the recording quality of most of their oeuvre -- that endeared them to so many, although Glenn Danzig possessed oneof the mostdistinctive and tuneful bellows in hardcore punk. Rather, it was Danzig's penchant for catchy, anthemic melodies, often delivered at warpspeed, and hislyrical obsession with grade-B horror films and splatter imagery that helped the Misfits build a rabid posthumous following. Name-drops andcovers bymetal bands like Metallica and Guns N' Roses kept the Misfits' songs circulating during the mid- to late '80s, when their tangleddiscography remained onlysporadically in print -- reissues were maddeningly incomplete, and much of the band's prime material was confined to rare singles and EPs.The mid-'90ssaw a spate of CD reissues that, while not quite presenting all of the Misfits' songs in the most concise, collectible format, at leastsucceeded in gettingthem all back into print, allowing those who missed the band the first time around to hear why they've enjoyed such enduring cult popularity.The Misfits were formed in Lodi, NJ, in 1977 by vocalist Glenn Danzig and bassist Jerry Caiafa, who performed under the name Jerry Only.Their nametaken from Marilyn Monroe's final film, the Misfits added drummer Manny and recorded a guitar-less single, "Cough Cool" b/w "She," on theirown BlankRecords label (later changed to Plan 9). Manny was soon replaced by "Mr. Jim" Catania, and guitarist Frank "Franch´┐Ż Coma" LiCata joinedup for the four-song 1978 EP Bullet, which featured a notoriously graphic image of John F. Kennedy being shot. Although recording sessions had been heldfor a full-length album, to be titled Static Age, no record company would accept the results, and whatever material was not subsequently issued onEPs languishedin the vaults until the 1985 compilation Legacy of Brutality. The Misfits began playing shows at CBGB's and attempted to obtain somegreater musicalstability with the addition of Whorelords guitarist Bobby Steele and drummer Joey Image. This lineup recorded the three-song EPs HorrorBusiness andNight of the Living Dead in 1979, the latter being released on Halloween. An aborted tour of the U.K. supporting the Damned followed, and afrustratedJoey Image quit the band after Danzig was arrested in a bar skirmish. Things had not been going well with Steele, either, and upon returningto theStates, Steele was ousted in favor of Jerry Only's younger brother Doyle (born Paul Caiafa; sometimes known as Doyle von Frankenstein).Arthur Googybecame the full-time drummer, while Steele went on to form the Undead. England's Cherry Red label issued the legendary Beware EP in1980, whichcontained Bullet, two tracks from Horror Business, and the Static Age outtake "Last Caress"; it became a ludicrously expensive collector'sitem in the yearsthat followed.Back in the States, more single releases followed over 1981, including the Three Hits From Hell 7" and another Halloween single, this onetitled "Halloween"and containing two versions of the song, one a low-budget attempt at creating a spooky ambience. Another full-length LP had been recordedunder thetitle Walk Among Us and was scheduled for release in late 1981, but a larger distribution deal was worked out with the Slash subsidiaryRuby. In 1982, theMisfits finally released their official debut album under the planned title, which proved one of the finest additions to their discography. Googyleft the bandaround this time in a dispute over money, throwing off plans to record a follow-up; in the meantime, the live EP Evilive was released later inthe year,featuring a guest appearance by Black Flag's Henry Rollins. Future Samhain and Danzig bassist Eerie Von Stellman was nearly recruited toplay drums, butlasted only a weekend; eventually, punk producer Robo was settled upon as skinsman, and the Misfits spent the rest of the year and the firsthalf of 1983recording Earth A.D./Wolfsblood, an album that tried to play up the more aggressive aspects of the band's music. Brian Damage was chosenas Robo'stouring successor, but barely got a chance to perform before Danzig disbanded the Misfits in late 1983. A farewell single, the three-song"Die Die MyDarling," was issued in 1984.Danzig, who had issued the solo single "Who Killed Marilyn?" in 1981, immediately formed Samhain with Eerie Von in an attempt to pursue amorefrightening musical direction to support his lyrics; Samhain eventually metamorphosed into the much more successful Danzig. The Caiafabrothers,meanwhile, formed Kryst the Conqueror, which managed only one five-song EP release. Misfits compilations began appearing as soon as1985 on Caroline(Legacy of Brutality); 1987's Misfits compilation began whetting appetites for the large quantity of material that remained out of print,although Metallica'sversion of "Last Caress" and, later, Guns N' Roses' cover of "Attitude" hinted at what might be discovered. More compilations, as well as afour-disc box set,followed in the mid-'90s, as the Misfits' cult continued to expand.In an attempt to cash in on the renewed interest, Jerry Only and Doyle re-formed the Misfits in 1996 -- without Danzig, instead recruitingvocalist MichaleGraves and drummer Dr. Chud. American Psycho appeared in 1997 on Geffen Records, followed two years later by Famous Monsters. In2001 that lineupissued the rarities/outtakes collection Cuts from the Crypt; it contained nothing from the Danzig era. The covers album Project 1950followed in 2003. Bythis point the Misfit lineup included Jerry Only on vocals and bass, Black Flag vet Dez Cadena on guitar, and Marky Ramone behind thedrums. In June2005 Misfits Records (via Ryko) released Fiend Club Lounge, a collection of Misfits classics redone in a "cocktail nation" style. ~ SteveHuey, All Music Guide « hide

Similar Bands: Danzig, Balzac, Samhain, The Adicts, Bad Religion

LPs
The Devil's Rain
2011

2.2
151 Votes
Famous Monsters
1999

3.4
409 Votes
Static Age
1997

4.4
734 Votes
American Psycho
1997

3.6
451 Votes
Earth A.D./Wolf's Blood
1983

4.2
560 Votes
Walk Among Us
1982

4.3
789 Votes
EPs
Friday The 13th
2016

1.8
15 Votes
Horror Xmas
12/03/2013

2.2
10 Votes
Land of the Dead
2009

2.9
25 Votes
Psycho in the Wax Museum
2006

2
9 Votes
Die, Die My Darling
1984

4.1
34 Votes
Halloween
1981

4.2
21 Votes
3 Hits from Hell
1981

3.9
53 Votes
Beware
1980

4.2
102 Votes
Night of the Living Dead
1979

4.2
77 Votes
Horror Business
1979

4.1
99 Votes
Bullet
1978

4.2
80 Votes
Cough/Cool
1977

3.4
16 Votes
Live Albums
DEA.D. ALIVE!
02/05/2013

2
15 Votes
Fiend Club Lounge
2005

2.3
40 Votes
Evillive II
1998

2.8
7 Votes
Evilive
1987

3.6
56 Votes
Compilations
Project 1950
2003

2.5
157 Votes
12 Hits From Hell
2001

4.4
20 Votes
Cuts from the Crypt
2001

3
61 Votes
The Misfits Coffin Box Set (4 Disc)
1997

4.6
73 Votes
Collection II
1995

4.2
212 Votes
Collection I
1986

4.2
280 Votes
Legacy Of Brutality
1985

4.2
126 Votes

Contributors: discovolante, arcane, MrAwesome, Mabbitt, Minushuman24, Trebor., InjunJoe, ButcheredChildren, HumanCannonball, Talos, Ficus, Alex101, tom79, charliethedm, Dave de Sylvia, ExitWound, BMDrummer, Midjicka, Tetsuya, Trebor., Parallels, InFiction, Satellite, kereealazer, Majk, drasticaction74, Yay,

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