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June 22, 2024

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Helldorado (CMC International)

By: Jeb Branin

Blackie Lawless has never made a single move in his career that wasn't thoroughly calculated. He is as much a businessman as he is a rocker. Ever since his pre-WASP days with his band SISTER (no, not Twisted Sister) when he ate live worms on stage, he had a plan for success. Sometimes his plan has paid off and sometimes he has downright embarrassed himself but you gotta hand it to the man, he has never quit. You also gotta admit he knows how to crank out a quality heavy metal album. A fact that brings us to "Helldorado". After more than a decade of trying to reinvent himself into everything from a "serious" artist to a industrial neo-metal guru Blackie has decided to return to the only formula that ever worked. This album is a total return to the roots of W.A.S.P. I can't decide if I should be aghast or pleased but I'll be damned if he hasn't pulled it off without a hitch. This album sounds like the missing link between the debut LP and "The Last Command". It is like a time machine that flings you back 15 years. Sure the album was produced with an eye to the ever growing market that is rediscovering the metal of the eighties but when push comes to shove you aren't listening to the man's motivation you are listening to his music and his music is worth a listen. If you have ever loved big, loud, cheesy heavy metal then you will love this. 'Nuff said.
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