Blitzkid: Anatomy of Reanimation (2008)
By: Devon B. on November 28, 2010  |  Comments ()  |  Bookmark and Share
Cover Art
Band Members: Argyle Goolsby, TB Monstrosity
Label: Fiend Force Records
Country: Germany
Track Listing
1. The Pumpkinpatch Murders
2. She Wolf
3. Pretty in a Casket
4. Let's Go to the Cemetery
5. Hellraiser
6. Dying Day
7. A Hopeless Night
8. These Walls
9. Return to the Living
10. As the Ropebridge Sways 11. My Dying Bride
12. She Dominates
13. Love Like Blood
14. Nosferatu
I picked up a Blitzkid CD a few years ago because I wanted some more horror-themed music to celebrate Halloween with. It took a while, but eventually I was playing that CD frequently and wishing I had more of their music. Will you like Blitzkid as much as I grew to? The answer would be the same as your answer to this question: Do you wish The Misfits recorded more songs? If you answered yes, then you may enjoy Blitzkid's material. If you answered no, firstly you're a total loser, and secondly fuck off.

For the uninitiated, perhaps the best way to describe Blitzkid's sound would be as an amalgamation of their influences, which are listed below:

  1. The Misfits

To be fair, Blitzkid can also take cues from other punk bands with horror leanings, and probably got the idea to re-record some of their earlier material for Anatomy of Reanimation Volume 1 from the Groovie Ghoulies brilliant Monster Club record. Blitzkid's original albums were fairly low-fi, so Anatomy allowed the band to offer up some decent sound quality versions of some of their earlier tracks. Aside from "Return to the Living," all of the songs are from their first three LPs: Terrifying Tales, Let Flowers Die and Trace of a Stranger. Rather than debate with idiots about whether punk is supposed to sound good or not, I'll just say the only reason to complain about these new recordings would be if Blitzkid did a George Lucas and let the originals disappear. This may seem like it's happened since much of Blitzkid's previous work is out of print, but the band have just signed a deal with People Like You Records which should make their back catalogue more available than ever before. Right now, Anatomy is probably the easiest Blitzkid record to obtain, which is why I've chosen it for review. That and the fact it is without question the best place to start if you're interested in the band.

The album kicks off with "The Pumpkinpatch Murders," and right away it's clear that things have been changed on Anatomy. The sound quality is vastly improved on all instruments, particularly the drums which had a tendency on previous Blitzkid releases to sound tinny and hollow. It's not just the sound quality that has improved, the instrumentation has gotten better, too. Again, I noticed this most on the drums, which in the past were usually nothing more than a loud, clanging timekeeping device and now are a little more complex and sound like part of the songs. It did take a while for the new vocals to grow on me, which I think is due to increased harmonies. Blitzkid actually have two lead vocalists, but they sound so similar it's hard to tell, and they sing together a lot more often on Anatomy which gives the vocals an almost echoing feel. I did eventually get used to this and now I prefer the Anatomy recordings over the originals in most cases. Perhaps another issue with the new vocals is that they sound a bit lighter and poppier, but the only song where the vocals have more grit than the original, "These Walls," is the only song on the album that I think is inferior to the original recording.

Other than "These Walls," the songs are greatly improved on Anatomy, with songs like "She Wolf," "My Dying Bride," and "Pretty in a Casket" being so much better they render the previous version obsolete. "Let's Go to the Cemetery" has been giving a stomping urgency that gives the track far more energy than its predecessor, and songs like "As the Ropebridge Sways," which were going for a bit of interesting instrumentation the first time around, are given a chance to be showcased properly. All of the songs have been injected with little changes like extra backing vocals or additional percussion. According to the CD booklet, a lot of these little changes have developed over the years of playing the songs live, so the changes are organic and it should please fans to be able to get the updated versions on CD.

The lyrics to the songs have thankfully stayed the same because the band's lyrics are often very funny, but I'm not sure if this is on purpose. The band have said that they wanted to have a camp element, so maybe they're in on the joke, but half the fun of listening to Blitzkid is having a chuckle at how brilliantly stupid the lyrics are. The opening line of "Nosferatu" is probably the best example because here they had to be trying to get a laugh: "Long black coat and fingernails the size of fucking trees. My head is bald, my ears they point, just like my fucking teeth!" Ha!

With catchy, brain permeating songs and album art often taken from silent era horror films, Blitzkid should appeal to those that yearn for more from The Misfits or the Newfits. Blitzkid will probably be liked more by those that dig the Newfits because while Blitzkid swear a bit and play the occasional song about having sex with a corpse, most of their material is closer in tone to the cartoony fun of the Newfits than the baby murdering, mother violating darkness of the Danzig era.

Anatomy may be all the Blitzkid some people need, but for those that want more their most recent album, Five Cellars Below, is also still in print, contains far and away their best song (an ode to the classic Dead-End Drive-In called "Starlite Decay") and has production quality to rival that found on Anatomy.

The liner notes for Anatomy promise a second volume is coming, which will hopefully include the best song off Terrifying Tales, "Teenage Necrophilian Love." It was an odd choice to leave out, but then they have a song called "Reanimated" on Let Flowers Die which I thought would've been the title track of this CD and it hasn't been re-recorded either.

As I said before, Anatomy is still in print and readily available. Just don't buy it from a store listing it as an import at a highly inflated price; it's available for much cheaper either from the label direct or from punk specialty outlets.
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