Album Review: Rob Zombie ‘Mondo Sex Head’

While Rob Zombie keeps himself busy working on films– and just being Rob Zombie– it’s easy to forget how much he has to offer the world of music, but this is an artist who is still very much relevant. It’s nice, then, to get a new album from him– oh, wait, these are all re-releases? These are all re-releases. Well, at least he took time off from shooting The Lords of Salem to presumably give this record a listen. Zombie approved, then, it’s Mondo Sex Head!

Much to my surprise, this collection of reworked Rob and White Zombie songs pulls together remarkably well as an album, with great pacing and more than enough variety to hold the attention of new and old fans alike. If you have never owned a Rob Zombie album before this really isn’t a bad one to pick up as a starting point, especially if you find the heavier focus on electronic elements appealing.

A remix album seems like a handy way to excuse putting out a greatest hits package for an artist who does not perhaps have the largest number of recognizable songs. Though, I think a lot of people will probably be surprised at just how many Rob Zombie songs they actually do know. He has not often been the darling of the international media, but he has no less managed to sell tens of millions of albums, and his songs have reached even further than that, thanks primarily to film soundtracks.

The first track, ‘Thunder Kiss ‘65’, feels like a mission statement on the way that electronic music will be showcased alongside the guitar, providing two distinct layers of grinding, churning noise, hitting hard and perfectly showcasing the similarities between these two worlds. ‘Living Dead Girl’, meanwhile, is kind of plodding and easily ignored, which is a shame for one of the best known songs of the collection. The track has been put to sleep, sounding lethargic and repetitive.

Dubstep and its techniques marry unsurprisingly well with hard rock. Zombie’s music in general seems to be better off with more electronics in the mix, and that’s not lacking from the original releases of some of these songs anyway, but here an argument could be made that the remixes are in fact the way certain songs should have been recorded originally.

Mondo Sex Head works out to be a very good album, with a lot to offer to fans of any persuasion. These recordings bring new life to the source material in ways that remix albums rarely do, and should appeal to people who are not normally interested in a package like this.

Release Date: August 7, 2012
Image Courtesy of Geffen Records

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