Nekromantix

Dead Girls Don't Cry (Hellcat)

Tied together by a threatening Lee Van Cleef spaghetti-Western theme, Dead Girls Don't Cry rides the range from clanging Sabbath metal ("Black Wedding") to harsh rockabilly ("Shock Star"). Loaded with death-defying two-part harmony, a well-crafted score, insane drum patter and orgasmic guitar licks, the Danes in Nekromantix have grown fiercer with each release. The progression is so natural that Grand Ole Opry-era country abides comfortably with goth on "A Stone With Your/My Name." "Where Do Monsters Go" is like a drive-in movie narrated by Tom Waits, and humor permeates the music as well as the lyrics: "Do they have a bank account/Do they even pee/Do tears ever fall from a monster's eyes?" That the vilified are merely misunderstood is just one example of a fine idea nicely executed; another is "Backstage Pass to Hell," wherein everyday groupies get more than they bargained for.

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The telling cover features three Nosferatus (Nosferati?) with cartoonish pompadours, an appropriate blend of creepy and kooky that recalls '80s pop-funkster Cameo. Our Hamlets of psychobilly could have stuck close to the Cramps/Damned formula and done quite well; instead, they've expanded into all realms of campy darkness, with a frenetic sound that stands alone under the shadow of the hangin' tree.

 
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