Whether it be through his early work in The Texas Drag Queen Massacre through his solo work which has had a rocky path over the years, Acoustic Nightmares Vol. 1 is essentially a love letter to fans of the man’s career. Including songs reaching back to 2008’s TDQM release Sick Little Things, there is nothing left unturned for this album.
1) Overture (The Nightmare Begins)
2) Scream Come True
3) From Transylvania With Love
4) B-Movie Monster
5) Are You Proud Of Me Now?
6) This Grave Of Mine
7) Drink The Blood
8) All The B-Movies
9) Life In Space
10) Die Screaming Marianne
11) Look Who’s Stalking
12) Creeping Beauty Part 2
13) Broken Dolls
The Deadhouse has had a long relationship with Al B. Damned, going back all the way to the very first post and review on this site covering The Seven EP (read that here) so when it was announced that the man would be releasing an acoustic album I was excited. Many consider Damned to be the overseas equivalent to Wednesday 13, and while their careers have certainly paralleled similarly, many (myself included) may find Damned to have reached his own level. Whether it be through his early work in The Texas Drag Queen Massacre through his solo work which has had a rocky path over the years, Acoustic Nightmares Vol. 1 is essentially a love letter to fans of the man’s career. Including songs reaching back to 2008’s TDQM release Sick Little Things, there is nothing left unturned for this album.
The album kicks off with an original intro track that leads into the rest of the album well, setting the stage for the stripped-down music to follow. While some acoustic albums choose to include bass and drums, Acoustic Nightmares is simply a guitar (provided by bandmate Nick Insidious) and the vocals and synths provided by Damned himself. Heading into “Scream Come True” from 2015’s For Old Times Stake (which you can read our Stereo Terror review here) followed by one of my personal favorites “From Transylvania With Love” off of 2010’s The Darker Side Of Me the album flows very well from the start with two songs that were originally at a faster tempo yet still lend themselves well to the acoustic style.
“B-Movie Monster” from The Seven EP follows and while not bad by any means, it doesn’t have that same spark that the preceding tracks. Thankfully “Are You Proud Of Me Now” and “This Grave Of Mine” from TDQM‘s Sick Little Things are perfect for the style. Throughout the album Damned continues to work his way through all the eras of his career. Unlike many acoustic albums where the artists take a laid-back approach to the vocals, Damned bucks that trend by still including his trademark vocal energy when the situation calls for it, helping to separate Acoustic Nightmares from other acoustic albums of the like.
Of course, the highlight of the album comes late in the game with a song that was already acoustic in nature, and one of my personal favorite songs of all-time. “Creeping Beauty Part 2” stands above the rest of the album in perfection, a huge feat given how much of the album works so well. It may not be everyone’s favorite track, and that’s the beauty of this album. Fans of the different eras of Damned‘s career can find one of their favorites stripped down, and fall in love with the song all over.
A note for those who decide to purchase the physical album, it comes beautifully packaged with the CD resembling a vinyl and a wonderful Dario Argento quote inscribed on the inside that any massive horror fan will appreciate.
Acoustic Nightmares Vol. 1 is currently available for pre-order on the Official Al B. Damned Bandcamp page and is set for release on December 13th. Of course, be sure to give the man a Like on the Al B. Damned Facebook page as well to stay up to date on all the latest news and happenings!
“Creeping Beauty Part 2”