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a silent salute: The audience "claps" at Joke Night during Deaf Awareness week. Click Arts&Life for a link to story. / Photo by Leah Lopshire

Today's word on journalism

December 15, 2008

As part of my own personal "war on Christmas" (which a Utah state senator has offered legislation to outlaw), the WORD celebrates the season by going on hiatus until January. May all out days be merry and bright, and here’s to a safe, healthy and saner New Year. HoHoHo!

Empty Minds: "Of all the people expressing their mental vacuity, none has a better excuse for an empty head than the newspaperman: If he pauses to restock his brain, he invites onrushing deadlines to trample him flat. Broadcasting the contents of empty minds is what most of us do most of the time, and nobody more relentlessly than I."

--Russell Baker, Pulitzer-winning columnist

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Thank you, Rock Gods, for White Zombie box set

By Shannon Gibbs

November 21, 2008 | In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I must give thanks . . . to the Gods of Rock 'n' Roll.

If not for them giving inspiration to Rob Zombie and all associated, I would not have been able to re-experience the ultimate heart-pounding, jaw-dropping, "OH MY GOD I LOVE THIS SONG, GOTTA HAVE THIS ALBUM" feeling I got the first time I heard White Zombie. With the release of Let Sleeping Corpses Lie, a four-disc/one-DVD boxed set containing all White Zombie's 64 studio recordings, due out Nov. 25, I was able to re-visit that feeling and sooooooooo much more.

This boxed set spans White Zombie's influence on metal, from the band's conception in 1985 to its demise in 1996, celebrating all that was ever twisted, strange and unnervingly thrilling about this band.

From the beginning, with the first studio album release under its own label Silent Explosion, White Zombie evolved both sound and image into an unforgettable montage of musical histrionics and horror.

The first CD in the boxed set contains 13 songs that feature all the tracks released on the Silent Explosion label. Four songs from Gods Of Voodoo Moon EP (1985,) two from Pig Heaven EP (1986,) and seven from the Psycho-Head Blowout EP (1987.) from here their music becomes far more saturated in metal and horror, captivating audiences and feeding the need in fans for harder, weirder and more hair-raising lyrics, bass and guitar riffs, and drum beats.

Disc two embodies all that was great from the first two full-length albums, Soul-Crusher (1987) and Make Them Die Slowly (1989.) Of the 17 songs on this disc are a few of my favorites, Demonspeed, Godslayer and Die Zombie Die. All of them, I have not heard in years and even a couple I'm not sure I have heard before, but thoroughly enjoyed.

And then disc three, containing 18 songs and where my prayers (to the Rock Gods of course) were answered in the form of the Kiss cover God Of Thunder. I have been looking high and low for quite a few years for this song, re-created if you will, in White Zombie style (thank you, Rock Gods thank you!) This CD also contains such favorite's as Black Sunshine,Grindhouse (A Go-Go,) and my one of my favorites, Thunder Kiss '65, which catapulted White Zombie into mainstream metal and enabled angst ridden youth (myself included) to bang heads harder then ever, much to the dismay of neighbors whom were defended by the decibels this song must be played at.

And then came disc four, containing 16 songs that cover the latter part of White Zombie's reign over the metal world. What else can I say but . . . THANK YOU, Rock Gods! On this disc there are favorites such as More Human Than Human, I'm your Boogeyman, and Feed the Gods, as well as the cover Children of the Grave, on a Black Sabbath tribute album (1994.)

As for the DVD, I don't want to sound redundant but one must thank the gods (of rock) when it is appropriate. Having never had the pleasure of seeing White Zombie live, this DVD allows me a glimpse of what I missed. It contains an array of live performances such as Black Sunshine, I Am Hell and many more. Not to mention the music videos to some chart toppers such as I'm Your Boogieman, More Human Than Human, Welcome to Planet MF, and that's just the tip of the iceberg. If you're a true White Zombie or Rob Zombie fan, you must add this boxed set to your collection. How else can you really appreciate the "musical horror show, dark pop culture," and hardcore sound that made White Zombie all that it was.

MS
MS

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