Danzig - _The Lost Tracks of Danzig_
(Megaforce, 2007)
by: Jackie Smit (7 out of 10)
If history has taught us anything, it's that we should treat any release touting a collection of rarities and unreleased songs with a certain level of dubiousness. As much a part of the music industry business model as tour merchandise, these compilations rarely serve any other purpose than to remind us of why said songs never saw the light of day in the first place. Conversely, with over two decades of solo artistry under his belt (not counting his stints with Samhain and Misfits), old man Glen Danzig was always going to have a fair bit of closet space to clear; and with twenty-six tracks on offer here, he's not exactly short-changing us either.

Nevertheless, _The Lost Tracks of Danzig_ proves an uneven listen -- at least half of the time. That much should be a given, really, seeing as how this retrospective takes us as far back as _Danzig 1_. Yet even so, we shouldn't really have to be subjected to such banal drivel as "Cold, Cold Rain", or a cringe-inducing cover of T-Rex's "Buick McKane". The off-cuts from Glen's mid-life crisis album (_Blackacidevil_, just in case there was any need to speculate) fare even worse, with "Warlock" regurgitating the lead riff to "Mother" against a fuzzed-up backdrop that has disaster written all over it.

Sift through the detritus and there are also quite a few gems to uncover. "Crawl Across Your Killing Floor" finds Danzig in full-blown singer / songwriter mode, refried in Black Sabbath and Led Zepplin's classic rock tradition, and as haunting and poignant as anything to be found in the Evil Elvis' impressive canon. Elsewhere, superb covers of David Bowie's "Cat People" and particularly The Germs' "Caught in My Eye" more than recompense for the aforementioned T-Rex faux pas. Even an uncharacteristically playful "I Know Your Lie" packs a punch hard enough to send your spleen to another continent.

With the prospect of another Danzig full-length becoming more of an uncertainty with every passing day, for fans of the man this is just about as good as it's going to get for a while.

Contact: http://www.danzig-verotik.com

(article published 27/7/2007)

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