Review Summary: An underrated if somewhat flawed psychedelic groove metal album2 of 2 thought this review was well written
This album was my first White Zombie, and continues to be my favorite work by them. The sound of this album is hard to nail down to genre descriptions, but I would describe it as psychedelic groove metal, the riffs on most of the songs are entirely infectious and groovy, as in Thunderkiss 65, the drums also follow into the groove pattern. The vocals are Rob Zombies traditional gruff shouts, and raspy clean singing, and the lyrics are filled with references to the undead, anti religious sentiments, and general drug and sex references.
The first thing I notice about the album is the excellent guitar work, there's nothing overly technical to be found on this album, but on most of the songs the riffs are groovy, and the leads are inspired by psychedelic and stoner rock/metal. There's a lot wah-wah effect used and its used quite effectively. Generally the riffs are very effective at getting you to feel the rhythm and want to bob your head up and down.
The drum work is once again not stellar, but it really does its job well and adds to the groovy psychedelic feel of the whole album. And the bass is generally in the background not adding too much flavor to the mix. The production value of it all really quite good, you can hear everything in the mix pretty much equally. There's no overemphasis on one aspect.
There are two major gripes I have with this album, the first being the lyrics, like most of Rob Zombies lyrics they aren't particularly well written and sometimes I have a lot of trouble figuring out what he's writing about in the first place. A lot of exclamations are to be found ( Thunderkissin nineteen sixty fiiive yeeeeah wow!) The second major complaint I have is that near the end the album seems to drag, and reuse the same ideas and usually the last 2 or 3 songs kind of blend together. But the good moments are really good, especially the first half of the album, which really keeps the groove and makes you want to get up and headbang and dance.
Standout Tracks: Thuderkiss 65, Black Sunshine, Thrust, Welcome to Planet Mother***er.