Skeletons, the all covers album from Glenn Danzig and crew, was released almost a year ago. And between this record and the recent Misfits reunion shows, it seems like Glenn is happy for the first time in his life. On Skeletons, eternal sad boy Danzig actually sounds like he is having…fun?
Initially, the cover art annoyed me a little. I get that it’s an homage to David Bowie’s cover album Pinups, but something felt cheap looking here. I’ve actually grown to appreciate it a bit, though. Like the rest of the album, ‘Zig took something someone else did and put his personal touch on it. It’s actually pretty fun, and also, just the whole skull thing gives it a bit of a Misfits vibe too.
And Glenn’s days in The Misfits really haunt this record. A lot of the tracks, especially since they are all covers, evoke a bunch of punks hanging out in the garage or a storage shed or basement or whatever and cranking out faster, louder, three-chord’ier versions of the songs they dig on the radio. In fact, it’s this basement production, garage rock sound that a lot of reviewers seemed to take issue with back when it was released. Well, that’s exactly what worked for The Misfits. The standout, to be sure, is the album opener, a cover Davie Allan’s biker theme from the film of the same name, “Devil’s Angels”. This song rips.
Some of the record does sound a bit uneven, considering that some of the tunes are pulled from different arenas of rock n’ roll. But they are all comparatively stripped down and made into something very much Danzig. Some tunes are heavier, like Sabbath’s “N.I.B.” I really dig his cover of this tune, though I almost wish he had chosen “Paranoid” instead. Not that we need another version of that song, but it’s always been a favorite of mine, especially among the more overplayed tracks, and it’s almost a punk song to begin with.
What this album sounds like to my ears is if, instead of Samhain, Glenn and The Misfits recorded a final album in like 1987. If you gave up on Danzig in the 90s (I’ve always been strictly a Danzig 1, 2 and 3 guy myself), this album is worth investigating.