W.A.S.P. - The Crimson Idol - Double Remastered Edition
Whenever I hear this record, I think that Blackie Lawless hit the ultimate peak with this opus. It is an album that exceeded all expectations of any W.A.S.P. fan, finally brining the conceptual entity while adding a progressive edge to Lawless' arsenal of musical endeavors.

By this point, Blackie was the only original member left, Chris Holmes left only a few years earlier, and Blackie was now free to pursue this project however he pleased. Although Blackie would provide the majority of the instrumentation; guitars, keyboards, and bass; Bob Kulick would provide his virtuoso lead axework to the album, while Frankie Banali and Stet Howland would pound the skins. The musicianship would be like no other W.A.S.P. record, the drumming would now start to become completely technical, with precision based fills played out on the toms at machine gun speed, while the production work would set standards for many Progressive Metal albums to come.

While the concept of the record brought the "Rock Opera" vibe to the record, the story itself can be seen as somewhat depressing, but yet at the same time, it seems to teach a hard lesson. The story is about a misguided youth named Jonathan, who rises to fame, but yet cannot seek the acceptance of his father while not being able to understand and handle the fame; not to mention that he indulges in it.

The songs on this record stay consistent in structure and key, but the tempo changes and constant progressive diversity, keep the record from becoming redundant, while keeping the mood of the record's concept constant. Most of the cuts on here are heavy, one cut in particular that really strikes a chord with the listener is "Chainsaw Charlie," a brutal and much needed insult to greedy music business executives, Blackie sings it with complete anger, probably influenced by his own experiences. Ballads include "The Gypsy Meets the Boy" and "The Idol," which are dark acoustic laden tracks that add to the emotional atmosphere that graces the record, while another cut called "Hold onto my Heart" has a classic power ballad vibe to it.

The second disc, is comprised of B-sides and bonus tracks (including a cover of Led Zeppelin's "When the Levee Breaks") that were not present on the original U.S. release, but were recorded during the sessions for The Crimson Idol, being that this is a great continuation of the music on this record, especially for fans that couldn't get enough the first time. The live cuts that were recorded at Donnington in 1992 around the time when the album was being recorded, so it all coincides perfectly with the release, even though some of the songs were originally written several years earlier. The sound quality on this reissue is punchier than the original release, giving new life to the record.

When you look back, most people will say that this record was overlooked, probably due to the "Alternative Rock" movement that was now dominating the mainstream music scene in the U.S. at the time, but the album was received with complete positive reception from critics and musicians alike, they put aside the whole anti-80's attitude and praised it. But when it comes to the subject of the Crimson Idol falling by the wayside, we have to look and see that all Metal was taking the plunge in the mainstream, everybody and every band in Metal was affected, without warning, and to the commercial programmers it was nobody's tears, and we were now living in the age of Pearl Jam and Smashing Pumpkins (Yuck!!!).

The Crimson Idol really stood out, it was really one of the last gasps of Metal in the U.S. mainstream, but did not go unnoticed. It was a precursor to what was to come from Blackie, seeing that he would branch out in directions that would please W.A.S.P. fans (although some were questionable, like K.F.D.), but regardless The Crimson Idol still sounds as good as it ever did, and still endures as one of the best Metal records of the nineties.

Written by Hashman
Sunday, July 20, 2003
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Hashman: 9/10

Members: 10/10 - Average of 1 ratings.



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RevelationZ Comments


Comment by Lars (Anonymous) - Thursday, July 24, 2003
WASP rules

Its way better than Tommy's Wagner-metal

Go EfB


Comment by Nina (Staff) - Sunday, August 10, 2003
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Comments: 40
Very good review!
This album is simply amazing! The best WASP album ever!

Posted by Nina (Staff)
Sunday, August 10, 2003

Comment by Jose Luis Vega Garcia (Anonymous) - Wednesday, October 1, 2003
I knew WASP with their self album, in 1984. Years gone by and re-discovered Blakie with his best record till now: The Crimsol Idol. I have some kind of things to say about this record: pure inspiration and sense of composition to make the best job reflecting his life. Buy it and enjoy!


Comment by VonSeux (Anonymous) - Thursday, October 2, 2003
i do not give this album 9/10
because the guittar work is almost none!
the songs sound like there's only Blackie voice and the drums. there's not good riffing like the first albums
i have only the Vinyl
l version, so i can't say about the bonus disc
althrought, Hold On To My Hear and The Great... are two fucking killing songs and Do the album




Comment by ANDREW STEVENS (Anonymous) - Monday, March 1, 2004
VONSUEX IS A SMUCK THIS ALBUM IS ABSOLUTELY AMAZING AS WELL AS EVERY ALBUM SINCE(K.F.D.8/10 VERY ANGRY,UNHOLY TERROR TITLE TRACK AND CHARISMA LYRICALLY INSANE JUST FOR THEM TWO TRACKS 9/10 DYING FOR THE WORLD RIVETING BALLEDS IF YOU COULD CALL TRAIL OF TEARS OR BLACK BONE TORSO A BALLAD SHADOW MAN IS JUST PLAIN AWESOME RATING 9/10 ALSO FOUND BLACKIE'S SOLO WORK TO BE QUITE STUNNING 8/10 CRIMSON IDOLS ROLLING DRUMS ARE JUST GREAT AS FOR THE 80'S WELL THEY WERE THE 80'S THATS NOT REALLY ANYBODY'S FAULT BUT OURS IF YOU LIKE WASP LIKE I LIKE WASP THEY CANT BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE EARLY YEARS THANK YOU FOR READING AND THANX WASP FOR CARRYING ON PLEASE PLAY THE STATES AGAIN YOUR UNDYING FANS WILL SHOW AS AMATTER OF FACTLY ANDREW W. STEVENS CLAREMONT N.H.


Comment by Noah (Anonymous) - Friday, November 19, 2004
This is by far the best W.A.S.P. album of all time , It's a great story album!.....Blackie's vocals are amazing , He's trully a great singer! 10/10


Comment by Little Drummer Boy (Member) - Thursday, January 12, 2006
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Comments: 166
Ratings: 46
This is Blackie's greatest achievement. I would have to agree with you on every point except "The Great Misconceptions of Me" would have to be my fave on this one. This is one hell of a closer.

LDB

Posted by Little Drummer Boy
Thursday, January 12, 2006

Comment by ThraX (Member) - Wednesday, April 11, 2007
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Comments: 135
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This is by far the best W.A.S.P. album of all-time , Not only W.A.S.P.'s best album but actually one of the bst albums ever created , Loosley based on Blackie's real life this is truly a must have for anyone who loves Progressive music and also fans of story albums....blackie's vocals are top notch , oozing with emotion and a controlled chaos only Blackie's voice can possess!.......This album is a perfect 10/10

Posted by ThraX
Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Comment by notrap (Member) - Monday, October 6, 2008
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Comments: 55
Ratings: 66

WASP 84's debut Album was my first Lawless experience. We can hear Maiden's influence on this release. However I always found something unique on their sound and "Fuck PMRC" attitude and of course..the Lawless outstanding voice made a difference those days.
If I give 8/10 to 84's WASP...Crimson Idol deserves 10/10.

This Progressive Rock/Heavy Opera is an outstanding release.
Lawless put The Who, Zeppelin and Flyod influences with all NWOBH ingredients...and WASP unique sound of course..to create this really good record.

One of my all time favorites
10/10!

Posted by notrap
Monday, October 6, 2008

Comment by gizmo (Member) - Tuesday, October 14, 2008
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Comments: 140
Ratings: 4
Exactly the best WASP album ever, much better than the average stuff they releases now and then. After this album they should have stopped.

The old ones are great as well

Posted by gizmo
Tuesday, October 14, 2008










Review by Hashman
None

Released by
Original Masters/Snapper/Sanctuary - 1998

Tracklisting
Disc One
1- The Titanic Overture
2- The Invisible Boy
3- Arena of Pleasure
4- Chainsaw Charlie (Murders in the New Morgue)
5- The Gypsy Meets the Boy
6- Doctor Rockter
7- I am One
8- The Idol
9- Hold Onto My Heart
10- The Great Misconceptions of Me
11- The Story of Jonathan

Disc Two (Bonus)
1- Phantoms in the mirror
2- The Eulogy
3- When the Levee Breaks
4- The Idol (Live Acoustic)
5- Hold Onto My Heart (Live Acoustic)
6- I am One (Live)
7- Wild Child (Live)
8- Chainsaw Charlie (Murders in the New Morgue) (Live)
9- I Wanna Be Somebody (Live)
10- The Invisible Boy (Live)
11- The Real Me (Live)
12- The Great Misconceptions of Me (Live)


Originally Released in 1993 on Capitol Records


Style
Heavy Metal

Related links
Visit the band page

Other articles
The Neon God - Part One - The Rise - (Hashman)

The Neon God Part II: The Demise - (Hashman)

Live at Kulturbolaget, Malmö, Sweden - November 3rd, 2009. - (Nina)



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