nUCLEAR BLAST RECORDS
From Frankenstein Drag Queens,Murderdolls and his successful solo career,singer/songwriter Wednesday 13 has run the gamut of rock sub-genres. From Horror Rock,(Frankenstein Drag Queens) to a more Glam Rock style (Murderdolls) to an almost metalcore sound, ( his last solo lp, CONDOLENCES (Nuclear Blast Records,2017),Mr.13 has proven his talent in all of these categories. However, with his new release,titled NECROPHAZE, (2019,Nuclear Blast Records.) the demonic songcrafter has taken a new musical path. Not as heavy,and more melodic than it's predecessor,fan reaction, as well as critical reactions have been mixed.Some fans feel that the album is simply not heavy enough,while others welcome the new style.One thing is for certain...this LP is sure to bring new fans into the Wednesday 13 fold.
As a 'critic' and fan of hard rock and heavy metal music,I find Necrophaze to be a breath of fresh metal air. While some may consider the 12 track opus 'too light',it is important to remember that any artist can hide behind too much distortion and screamed,un-intelligible lyrics.Yet, it takes true,un-abashed talent to be able let a song's melody take the lead role,and to accompany that melody with intelligent,yet clever lyrics,and just the right amount of distortion, effects and the like.( Ghost has proven that mere distortion and odd sounds does not make a song 'heavy metal' anymore.)
The bottom line is:this album is much more approachable than the one before it.Yet,be assured that Mr. 13 ,in no way, loses his patented style here. On the contrary,he seems to be returning to more of a 'Murderdolls' sound.Cleaner,tighter and more distinct.He has allowed his vocal abilities and the melodic, yet still quite heavy sound take the spotlight on this release....and does a damn fine job of it!
This is some of Wednesday 13's best work since Skeletons (2008,DR2 Records) and the sophomore release from Murderdolls,Women and Children Last (2010,Roadrunner records)A heavy, hard-edged album one can sing along with.
This release may not please all of his fans, yet it will, without a doubt, expand his fanbase.Tracks like "Zodiac","Life Will Kill You" and his blistering cover version of W.A.S.P.'S first single, "Animal" ( Fuck Like A Beast)" shine like diamonds,as does the entire album. This is a musi have for all metal fans.
GRADE : B+
Marc "Mr. Music" Farr