W.A.S.P. “The Neon God – Part 2 - The Demise” Sanctuary Records Group 2004 reviewed by: Ken Pierce

Track Listing
1. Never Say Die
2. Redemption
3. The Demise
4. Clockwork Mary
5. Tear Down The Walls
6. Come Back To Black
7. All My Life
8. Destinies To Come (Neon Dion)
9. The Last Redemption
Chapter 2 of Blackie Lawless latest opus has just been released and it is a continuation along the same lines musically as the first. Guitarist Darrell Roberts not only manages to kick some serious guitar ass on the CD, but he is very involved in the production of the piece. Originally I was hesitant at his replacing Chris Holmes who I am so used to even a couple of years after his departure. However, hearing these now 3 albums he has done with the band and seeing them live makes me say what a great addition he is to the lineup. He is a commanding presence onstage as well.

Also returning is Bassist Mike Duda and Drummer Stet Howland. The credits list Stet as being the sole drummer percussionist on the piece, however there are internet interviews with former session man and Quiet Riot great Frankie Banali that lead us to believe he was simply deleted from the credits and is present on the recordings. Blackie has not countered this claim to my knowledge.

So this CD while very good, does really require you listen to the first half in order to fully absorb and appreciate the tale Blackie is spinning for you. The first half spoke of Jessie Slane’s rise to his status as the Neon God. This time is the fall of this very same character. So far one of my most favored tracks are “Ressurrection”, “Tear Down The Walls”, “The Last Redemption” and “Come Back To Black”. To me they captured the quintessential W.A.S.P. feel. Blackie has been one of those performers who is lucky enough to have his voice stay in the same power and his song-writing skills improve across the years. This tale itself would make a good metal movie I think.

I did like this record as I am generally prone to do for W.A.S.P. material however I did have some minor criticisms. There are no pictures of the band in the booklet and I think that given WASP is still such a visual band it would have been good to showcase the current lineup. All the lyrics are inside as well as the continued storyline which helps one conclude the tale started by the first part on “The Rise” which was released early in the Summer. I also had some reservations on the decision to make this a two-parter. I notice a trend in people buying CD’s of their favorite bands these days and few are willing to continually take a chance. W.A.S.P. fans are legion and perhaps would buy it no matter what, but I feel the unschooled new fan might only buy one and pass on the other. In any event this is a must have for the ardent fan and make sure you go to see them live since the group still kicks ass.

W.A.S.P. Homepage: www.waspnation.com

Rating: 7.5/10

--Ken Pierce 11.01.04

Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.

All reviews for this band:
The Neon God – Part 2 - The DemiseW.A.S.P.
Ken Pierce11/1/2004
The Neon God - Part One: The RiseW.A.S.P.
Frank Hill6/9/2004
The Sting-DVDW.A.S.P.
Ken Pierce6/16/2004

Interviews found from this band:

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