"Back From the Dead" (A2M; 2009)

Reviewed by Snidermann

Spinal Tap's "Back From The Dead" is a collection of studio recordings of the songs that were heard performed live in the 1984 movie. The lyrics were fun when you heard them in the movie and they are even more fun with the studio tracks -- for the simple reason that you can understand more of the words.

As always, the "band" seems to making fun of themselves and, once again, their larger-than-life characters put on a very good performance.

I'm a huge fan of the original movie and a big fan of the Tap's 2003 release, "Break Like The Wind," so I was very excited about this recording. I caught the band live in Los Angeles a few years back which was a major treat. Bottom line: If you liked the movie, you'll like this recording. Spinal Tap, almost by accident, have become part of metal lore worldwide.

Spinal Tap: David St. Hubbins (Michael McKean) - vocals and guitar; Nigel Tufnel (Christopher Guest) - guitar; Derek Smalls (Harry Shearer) - bass. 

For more information, check out http://spinaltap.com/.

"Break Like the Wind" (MCA)

Reviewed by Snidermann

Everyone visiting this site has probably seen or at least heard of the classic 1984 movie "This Is Spinal Tap." If you haven't and you are reading this review, I suggest you immediately rent or, better yet, buy it! You must see this film! The movie rocks and the music is hilarious and awesome. 

If you haven't, I'm afraid I've got to burst the fictional bubble and let you know that Spinal Tap isn't really the listed bandmembers (Nigel Tufnel, David St. Hubbins, Derek Smalls) but is really three great comic actors (Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Harry Shearer). They write their own songs and the perform their own instruments so you can't really say they're not a real band. 

"Break Like the Wind" is Spinal Tap's second full-length release, following their "Smell the Glove" album (also known as the soundtrack to "This is Spinal Tap"). "Break" is a lot smoother and more consistent than the first CD, with better production, better musicianship and the same dose of humor. In addition, there are tons of guest artists performing hereon, including Jeff Beck, Cher, Steve Lukather, Joe Satriani, Slash and Dweezil Zappa.

"Break Like the Wind," like Spinal Tap in general, is such good parody that it's virtually indistinguishable from that which it pokes fun at. Songs like "Bitch School," "Diva Fever," "The Sun Never Sweats" and "Stinkin' Up The Great Outdoors" may be parodies of heavy metal songs, but they're so dead on that headbangers will find themselves pumping their fists in the air at the same time they're laughing their asses off. 

Yeah, it's all tongue-in-cheek and it's making fun of the genre we love but, damn, is it funny and boy, does it rock! Spinal Tap is probably the most fun you can have in heavy metal (with the possible exception of watching "The Osbournes") and I, for one, hope we hear more from them one day.

I don't usually list the songs on a CD, but I think the titles from "Break Like the Wind" will give you the flavor of what Spinal Tap is all about:

1) Bitch School
2) The Majesty Of Rock
3) Diva Fever
4) Just Begin Again
5) Cash On Delivery
6) The Sun Never Sweats
7) Rainy Day Sun
8) Break Like The Wind
9) Stinkin' Up The Great Outdoors
10) Springtime
11) Clam Caravan
12) Christmas With The Devil
13) All The Way Home

Spinal Tap: David St. Hubbins (Michael McKean) - vocals and guitar; Nigel Tufnel (Christopher Guest) - guitar; Derek Smalls (Harry Shearer) - bass. 

For more information, check out http://spinaltap.com/.

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2009 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 05 Sep 2023 21:55:32 -0400.