Pedaling a tried and tested formula seemingly garners only searing vitriol from many, proclaiming a band’s craft as a simple rehash of past glories. A select few however, the AC/DCs, the Motorheads and the Slayers of this world, attain legendary status on the back of defiantly adhering to a rigid recipe. Rob Zombie is one other such artist. Formidably grooving industrialisms and shouty choruses all enveloped in a whimsical, B-movie horror schtick remain very much the order of the day with the eponymous frontman’s fifth outing, seeing ‘Venomous Rat Regeneration Vendor’ packing little in the way of surprises, yet delighting all the same with its familiar thunder.
Booting off with the slow burning stomp of ‘Teenage Nosferatu Pussy’, devotees will quickly find much to salivate over as the ominous crunch is delivered with all the trademark lyrical fiendishness we could have hoped for. Indeed, from the jaunty shuffle of single ‘Dead City Radio And The New Gods Of Supertown’ and the full throttle riff-a-rama that is ‘Behold! The Pretty Filthy Creatures!’, there’s no denying the sense of big, dumb fun which permeates throughout.
Although the occasional cut does fall just short of the mark (an unnecessary inclusion of the Grand Funk Railroad number ‘We’re An American Band’ and an overlong ‘Rock And Roll (In A Black Hole)’ spring immediately to mind), the sleazy call to arms ‘Revelation Revolution’ and a deliciously danceable bluster of ‘Lucifer Rising’ more than redeem any rare misfirings. The strutting twang of ‘Trade In Your Gun For A Coffin’ just seals the deal.
Infectious, commanding and almost arena ready across the board, ‘Venomous Rat Regeneration Vendor’ sees Rob Zombie at both his most accessible and strangely at his hardest hitting yet. Sweeping aside any notions of progression with a focus on simply stellar songwriting, the release represents the power of avoiding any futile tinkering with a sound which simply delivers the goods every time.
Written by Tony Bliss