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Carnival of Chaos

GWAR

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Album Review

Chock-full of random derision, expansive snarkiness, and low-down garage sensibilities, Carnival of Chaos is Gwar at its best. The snapshots of a cartoon apocalypse and over-the-top deviance of this 1997 Metal Blade release are in strict keeping with the group's foul vision. The punk-inflected chugging and whining guitar lines make this one of Gwar's most sylized and, well, listenable releases to date. But the bizarre and frequently self-effacing lyrics are what make Carnival of Chaos one of Gwar's best offerings. "Penguin Attack" is an absolute hoot, with some of metal's all-time funniest lyrics: "They are on a rampage/They were first to fight/They would write a new page/If they could only write." Other choice cuts include the hardcore-esque "If I Could Be That" and the '80s pop of "I Suck on My Thumb." Stripped down and full of goofy but vibrant anxiety, Carnival of Chaos is a must for the thinking Gwar fan (if such a creature exists).

Biography

Formed: Richmond, VA

Genre: Rock

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

GWAR (popularly thought to be an acronym for God What an Awful Racket, despite the band's protests to the contrary) are thrash metal's answer to the more mainstream satire of Spinal Tap. Gory, sexually perverse, and scatological in the extreme, GWAR were formed at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond as an experiment in marketing strategy by several musicians, art students, and dancers. The group claimed to consist of all-powerful interplanetary warriors, descended from aliens...
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Carnival of Chaos, GWAR
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