Kerrang! June 30, 1990 REKORDZ GLENN DANZIG Brawn to be Wild! By Mike Gitter DANZIG 'Danzig II: Lucifuge' (Def American advance tape) In the comic book world of his own design, Glenn Danzig would have surely ditched his current assemblage for the like of Hulk Hogan, Robo Cop and Marvel's Wolverine. Somewhere between 'Blood Orgy Of The She Devils' and Black Oak Arkansas' Jim Dandy, he lurks, pumping his biceps, triceps, hamstrings and ego with all kinds of half-baked impieties. Larger than life, stranger than fiction, unfriendly, creepy and severely talented, the presumptuously titled 'Luciwhathis' ('Do your homework on that one,' admonishes the Satanic Fonz) finds the man stumbling on predictably morbid, yet uneven turf. Forsaking that fiery rifferama of his eponymous 1988 debut, what we've got is a diluting of the brutal Autumn vision on which he's staked his decade-plus claim. Gone are the latter-day Damned meets AC/DCisms, the guttural rage, the hell-born black magic melodies. More Mountain than Motorhead, Bloodrock than Black Sabbath, Elvis than evil, Danzig's (the band) stylistic explorations reek of plod and pomp. Top heaviness and lack of direction. Only opener 'Long Way Back From Hell' gets the blood boiling. Fiery, frenetic, spitting vitriol and brimstone, when the Cult Of Glenn asks: 'Do you want to take a life?/Do you want to cross that line?' 'F**K YEAH!' seems the appropriate affirmation. 'Snakes Of Christ' is the golem of a good idea; the sort of thing Glenn tried out in Samhain (his most intriguing musical vision to date), but it falls a bit short here. It's a pile-up of John Christ's perverse, twisting guitars - at one point inverting the blood-curdling 'Twist Of Cain' - and Danzig's outer limits lyrics. But just two songs in and the long slide commences. Strange that the dull, laconic 'Killer Wolf' and 'I'm The One', a twangy, acoustic Elvis tribute, sound virtually indistinguishable. With or without Eerie Von Stehlman's bass plod or Chuck Biscuits' once-again criminally shortchanged drumming, the common denominator is strictly yawnsville. Sheesh, the awfully titled 'Tired Of Being Alive' (gotta better alternative?) seems ravenous and electric in comparison. Danzig's current inclination is best summed up on 'Devil's Plaything'. Balancing hellbent power and sombre melancholy aided by Rick Rubin's house of real Metal production, this is about as close as Glenn gets to raw and sinister blues like Robert Johnson's. By and large, the bulk of Side Two is as unmemorable as it is badly conceived: '777', a clumsy cradle of baroque chordings and clumsy slide guitar; 'Girl' and 'Pain In The World' I can't even recall what they were about, even after 666 plays. 'Blood & Tears' showcases Glenn's rich, dynamic vocal pyro. Orbison-like in his throaty pathos and minimalist composition, it's stripped of the tiresome occultist claptrap and macho chest-beating that Danzig's true talents shine forth. Roy Orbison never needed a Gold's Gym membership.