Fun Fun Fun Fest Stages
Photo by Sandy Carson


Waterloo Park, Nov. 8

"I heard you were having a drought, so I brought you the black clouds of Danzig weather," announced Lodi, N.J.'s spookiest Hair Club for Men candidate Glenn Danzig Sunday night. Vegas-worthy stage patter aside, Danzig's first Austin performance in 15 years offered a stripped-to-the-marrow grim rocker that likely caused at least a few flatlines at neighboring University Medical Center Brackenridge. Banishing the rolling fog and driving rain that turned Waterloo Park into, fittingly, a charnel house of thick, black goop, opener "Skincarver" flayed the night wide open with scalpel-keen metal riffs courtesy of new Danzig inductee (and former Prong frontman) Tommy Victor. "Twist of Cain" came shrouded in Rick Rubin's stainless, steely, 1989 metallics, backed by the punishing arrhythmic throb from skin-scraper Johnny Kelly, late of Type O Negative, and former Samhain drummer Steve Zing, now crunching skulls on bass duties. "I hear this festival is named after some good friends of mine. This is for the Big Boys' Randy Biscuit Turner," the lord of the left hand offered before hollering his way through a vicious "Am I Demon?" Danzig's voice has matured and deepened – there were abyssal fissures in his high end – but as with prior incarnations, the stage show was short on distractions and long on the ghosts of Elvis past. Playing strictly a post-Plan 9 set, heavy on slashing standards ("Her Black Wings," "Brand New God") that sent the suddenly barricaded pit into paroxysms of churning, devil-locked glee, Danzig brought the rain, the pain, and curfew-sneering closer "Mother." Danzig: Infinite sleep has ended, and he lives again.

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