REVIEW: Rob Zombie – The Lunar Injection Kool Aid Eclipse Conspiracy

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When it comes to rock legends, Rob Zombie should be a familiar name, for his time in WHITE ZOMBIE if not his following solo career that started in the late ’90s, around when WHITE ZOMBIE called it quits. Despite this impressively long career, March 12th, 2021, marked the release of his mere seventh studio album via Nuclear Blast Records, under the traditional acid trip of a Rob Zombie album name: “The Lunar Injection Kool Aid Eclipse Conspiracy.” It seemed like a good time to see what this industrial rock hero has been doing in music these days.

Now personally, I don’t know a lot about Rob Zombie beyond a familiarity with and nostalgic fondness for 1998’s“Dragula.” However, I’ve been growing more and more interested in industrial metal these days, thanks to bands like TURMION KÄTILÖT and FEAR OF DOMINATION, who are some of the local giants of the genre. With that in mind, it seemed like “The Lunar Injection Kool Aid Eclipse Conspiracy” was worth checking out.

My first impression of this album is that, for better or for worse, this is exactly what I was expecting from Rob Zombie. Has he pushed the limits of his sound and expanded on it in the past few decades? It doesn’t seem like it, as I think “Dragula” would fit in pretty well with any of this material. So if you, as a listener, are hoping for something bigger and beyond what he’s done before, this album may be a bit lackluster. However, with that in mind, the man does know what he’s doing and the band are very capable.

The music and performance is overall strong throughout, maintaining that classic ’90s feel and production; this is Rob Zombie doing what he has always done and done well. Innovative it may not be, but bad it is most certainly not, and there are some fun nuggets to be found throughout. For example, the listener gets a taste of the wild west with a bit of cowboy/spaghetti western flavor in “18th Century Cannibals, Excitable Morlocks and a One-Way Ticket on a Ghost Train,” there are some deightful funky parts in “The Eternal Struggles of the Howling Man,” some smooth acoustic melodies in “The Much Talked of Metamorphosis” (one of a couple instrumentals), and “Boom-Boom-Boom” is a bit bluesy and far less industrial or energetic. A personal highlight is penultimate instrumental “The Serenity of Witches,” which has a really alternative groove, acting as a kind of intro to “Crow Killer Blues.” However, I agree with critiques that say that the album is overly long – it does have a whopping seventeen tracks (including the intro), and tracks like “The Ballad of Sleazy Rider” or “Get Loose” failed to leave any impression, feeling like there is a bit of filler here and there.

So, having had a fresh take on what Rob Zombie is all about, this album ultimately feels like a pretty good depiction of what this guy is – and maybe always has been – about: hard rock, heavy industrial beats, stoner references, and the occasional weird throw-down just to change things up. If you’re big into Rob Zombie‘s whole vibe, there’s surely plenty to enjoy on this album.

Tracklist

  1. Expanding the Head of Zed
  2. The Trimuph of King Freak (A Crypt of Preservation and Superstition)
  3. The Ballad of Sleazy Rider
  4. Hover Over the Dull Earth
  5. Shadow of the Cemetery Man
  6. A Brief Static Hum and Then the Radio Blared
  7. 18th Century Cannibals, Excitable Morlocks, and a One-Way Ticket on the Ghost Train
  8. The Eternal Struggles of the Howling Man
  9. The Much Talked of Metamorphosis
  10. The Satanic Rites of Blacula
  11. Shower of Stones
  12. Shake Your Ass-Smoke Your Grass
  13. Boom-Boom-Boom
  14. What You Gonna Do with That Gun, Mama?
  15. Get Loose
  16. The Serenity of Witches
  17. Crow Killer Blues

Line-Up

  • Rob Zombie – lead vocals
  • John 5 – guitars, backing vocals
  • Piggy D. – bass, backing vocals
  • Ginger Fish – drums

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