Review Summary: The burial of Come OrganisationGreat White Death
was the bittersweet ending of Whitehouse's tenure within the Come Organisation, which would sadly close down in 1985. The reasons for the burgeoning hiatus are mostly unknown, but regardless, Great White Death
was heralded at the time as the "Swan Song" of Whitehouse. Had Whitehouse not reformed I would have most likely accepted that belief. I don't.
The sad fact of Whitehouse is that they innovated at too late a time. Great White Death
created a myriad of chirping birds and distorted slow motion vocals from William Bennett, but left itself too soft. Ass Destroyer
largely did the same thing but allotted for more yelling and less slow motion. It then moves on to my favorite track on the album You Don't Have to Say Please
, a triumph of curdled wailing, chirping distortion, and just all around instrumental madness. You Don't Have to Say Please
takes immediate shades from Erector
in its powerful vocal delivery, repeated pronunciation of the title of the track, and nutty instrumental clutter.
returns to the usual Whitehouse antics, repeating screeching synths, distorted vocals, and piercing microphone feedback. By now the album has created this wave of anxiety through it's soft beginning and terror-filled second act. Is it any surprise though？ Great White Death
can be considered anxiety in itself. People can die from anxiety, and the face of fear has been labelled "White as a Ghost". Then again; wasn't Whitehouse mostly about "Fear is Death"? I'm Coming Up Your Ass
is a mostly redundant track utilizing the same chirping and slow motion vocal delivery from Great White Death
Perhaps We've Got The Power
holds the answers to why Whitehouse ended in its lyrics:
"Deliver the goods
Want to receive
We've got the power
Know how to use it"
Perhaps Whitehouse felt they had become what they hated. William Bennett is not John Lennon. Will doesn't make albums designed to be symbolic and experimental so he can show off his misguided intelligence with narcissistic abandon. William made this as an homage, and homage to the things we can't speak of in public. He made a group dedicated to the sins and taboos of mankind. That is why he grew the fanatical, mischievous fanbase he got. Eventually the audience turned into its own worst enemy, becoming infiltrated by smartsy artsy, bourgeoisie morons dedicated to finding symbolism where none existed and putting Bennett on a pillar he never wanted to stand on. Maybe that's why it ended, maybe Whitehouse had run its course and now it was time to go.
Or so we thought...