is the brainchild of Snowy Shaw (King Diamond, Mercyful fate, Memento
Mori, Dream Evil, Kee Marcello's K2, etc.) and this is their 5th release
after the successful "Vol. 1: Le Theatre du Vampire"
(2000), if we also count "Coming Soon to a Theatre Near You,
the 2nd", the re-make with additional tracks of their starter.
Not much has changed, their formula is so ample and various that it
becomes hard to repeat oneself, and this time they also seem to have
done things in big, regarding the superproduction, the promotion and
the quality of arrangements, easy, catchy and theatrical as usual.
After the well-chosen intro "The Thing", "Munsters"
starts, throwing itself forward like a mix between Motorhead and Type
0 Negative, before a final mockering slowdown alà Addams family.
Following the interlude "The Ride" is "My Ride
into Afterlife", kind of between T.0.N., Bauhaus and a touch
of 'The Ghost of the Opera', gifted with a mind-penetrating obsessive
guitar plot; soon comes the best part of the track: great drums, guitars,
solos, and in the end Rob Halfordian vocals appear for the first
time. Aren't they cool musicians?
Seducing female vocals rule "The Stripper", thrust
into an aggressive metal structure, while again we meet Halford-like
vocals in "Verbal Diarrhoea", a quite Fight-influenced
composition, but there's no problem, cos it comes a superb solo like
the ones you can't hear very often these times to make us forget all
the issues about originality. Only skilled bands can play at these levels.
Another interlude ("Bon Voyage Mutherfucker!") and
it's time to taste the masterpiece of the CD, "The Master, the
Servant, the Slave", very close to the most doomy T.0.N., nevertheless
the vocals are one more time debtors to Judas Priest's vocalist and
there're also some female ones in the end.
"Beyond the Threshold of Pain" is dark modern metal
reminding of the latest Marylin Manson (the most commercial unfortunately);
the song is ruined by children's vocals that taste like mayonnaise on
chocolate, whereas "Hitmusic for Hitmen" is strange
The title track is hardcore with some death-not-growling vocals and
"s/s Hellride" closes the studio tracks powerfully,
with a crescendo bringing to nothing, for it abruptly interrupts itself.
Some seconds pass and then we've got 2 live covers by Lee Hazelwood
recorded in Gothenburg in 2000, "These Boots Are Made for Walking"
and the excellent "The Wurld Is Sick...And So Are We".
Countless are the definitions that journalists have given to categorize
Snowy and the 3 Stooges (erotic, horror, black, death, gothic, doom,
shock avantgarde, evil metal, mood music, vaudeville, chanson, tongue
in cheek rock...), what matters is that it's a nice band able to give
strong emotions and not the common band, so all true metal believers
By the way, they've also made a short movie, "Thrillogy",
so if you like them you can also begin searching for that DVD. More
info @: www.snowyshaw.com
MARKUS GANZHERRLICH - 17/02/04