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Only Theatre of Pain

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(26 Reviews)

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  • This album came out the same year that I was born, making it 23 years old now. Yet, 23 years on, it still sounds as fresh as anything out there now. No, it sounds BETTER than anything coming out now.

    I got this when I was 16 or so, making a transition from old school punk (Crass, Dead Kennedys, et al) into more “goth” music and culture, like Bauhaus, The Sisters, The Cure, etc.
    Quite simply, it blew me away. The perfect blend of both styles, in my opinion. The lyrics are darkly violent, sexual, blasphemous, and above all, intelligent. The music is loud, and punky, but at the same time, noisy and often changes pace, something most punk and goth cannot claim. For all the fast, punkish songs, there are still dirgy, synth-laden ones, and tracks of pure noise collage hell. It does not give the impression of being dark and morbid simply for the sake of being dark and morbid-far from being contrived, it feels like this is the only way that Rozz and Rikk could have sounded at this point in time. Fluid yet dischorant all at once. I cannot recommend this album nearly enough.

    While the production is not Pro-Tools perfect, it’s still excellent, and really does not sound dated like a lot of albums of that time.

    This is where the make-up set got their sound, make no mistake. None have done it better, and likely, none ever will. Rozz was a true original…I only wish that he and Boyd Rice had been able to do the long talked about project they talked about. Now that would have been an amazing recording…

    The original Christian Death with Rozz Williams-accept NO immitations.

    Posted on November 19, 2009