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Album Review

An album that should only be purchased by the most absolutely die-hard fanatical Christian Death fans — and even they will likely be disappointed in it — Invocations: 1981-1989 is a legit release compiling various bootlegs that had been circulating over the years. Unfortunately, even by bootleg standards, the quality of these tapes ranges from weak to unlistenable; some of them sound like they were genuinely recorded standing on the sidewalk outside the club! (The liner notes even apologize for the atrocious sound quality, an admirable bit of frankness that doesn't make them sound any better.) Much more interesting are the four very early demos that close the album. An early version of "Sleepwalk" sounds like U.K. doom-pop merchants Section 25, and the bizarre, piano-based "Invocation 3" is actually quite interesting, while the other two, "Haloes" and "Spectre," are almost poppy in a Bauhaus kind of way. These early tracks are good to great, and key listening for any fans of the band's early days. Pity that you have to slog through the first ten tracks to get to them, though.


Formed: 1979 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The founding fathers of American goth rock, Christian Death took a relentlessly confrontational stand against organized religion and conventional morality, with an appetite for provocation that made Marilyn Manson look like Stryper. Regardless of who was leading or performing in the group, Christian Death set themselves up to shock, both in their cover art and their lyrics, which wallowed in blasphemy, morbidity, drug use, and sexual perversity. Their self-consciously controversial tactics set them...
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Invocations, Christian Death
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