W.A.S.P. – Golgotha
Release Date: October 2, 2015
There aren’t too many metal bands from the 80’s I count on for architecting an album I could absolutely fall in love with these days. Now from those blazing exceptions I still confide in, W.A.S.P. happens to be on the very top of the list. No matter how much people may mock the bloated appearance of the ageing Blackie Lawless, no matter how they may react to his religious evolution to the point of restraining songs with “inappropriate” lyrics from their concert set list, one cannot deny – the man still has it! Golgotha, their newest album speaks volumes about how fantastic it still is to listen to Blackie’s raw, emotive vocals.
Golgotha kick starts the musical journey with “Scream”, an opening track which just screams how much W.A.S.P. still means business with its 2015 album. In fact W.A.S.P. ‘s fundamental musical approach hasn’t changed much since their monumental The Headless Children (1989) days. They have been consistent more or less without sounding dull or monotonous (not a fan of Helldorado though) which makes the thought of any new W.A.S.P. material something to look forward to, something to believe in. Golgotha is the sign of a band maturing well with time.
Songs like “Miss You”, “Fallen Under”, “Hero Of The World” and the closing title track are all magnificent blend of intensity and melody which make the overall album rich in sonic pleasure. The hard-driving “Shotgun”, the profound “Eyes Of My Maker” and the gleeful “Last Runaway” (you don’t expect to find this kind of happy tune in an album with that kind of art work; and yes I love the dark imagery gracing the cover) adds more variety to the track list which is a plus.
My personal most favourite track on Golgotha is “Slaves of the New World Order”, which is again W.A.S.P. doing exactly what they do best. As a mesmerized listener, initially I didn’t even realize the song’s duration clocks in at almost eight minutes. Guitarist Doug Blair and bassist Mike Duda have performed their role fine enough with this latest project. Following drummer Mike Dupke’s departure from the W.A.S.P. camp, Yngwie Malmsteen sticksman Patrick Johansson has been roped in for live assaults, but Dupke laid down the drum work for Golgotha prior to taking his leave.
While there are some up-tempo moments capturing the musical mood of the band during the pre-Headless Children phase, it is the The Crimson Idol kind of sound that plays the Dominator here. Named after the place where Jesus was crucified, Golgotha in W.A.S.P.’s musical catalogue certainly is an impressive album that is dark, brooding, and atmospheric. Thank you Blackie Lawless for doing justice to the faith of W.A.S.P. fans in you and your band.