Carson gave this album
Famous Monsters by Misfits is a remarkable album blending original music with plots from science fiction and horror films.
Like much of the Punk genre, Famous Monsters consists mainly of short, fast paced tracks. Also, in keeping with the overall tone of the genre, most of the songs focus heavily on rhythm. What makes this album different than the norm are the vocals; instead of short staccato notes, the Misfits use long sustained note throughout much of the album. This difference is clearly heard in "Die Monster Die", "Fiend Club", and "Saturday Night". The sound is heavier than found in much of the genre such as works by the Ramones and Green Day, but still manages to feel more like Punk than like Metal. Many of the tracks are highly repetitive, but Misfits cannot be faulted for that as it is a hallmark of this style.
As its name would imply, the theme of this album is famous - or infamous - monsters. Who could forget the ants from "Them", King Kong and Pumpkin Head from their respective eponymously named movies, or the zombies from "Night of the Living Dead". Speaking of "Night of the Living Dead", Misfits seem to find a great deal of inspiration from George A. Romero's works as they have recorded several homages to his movies including "Hunting Humans" on this album as well as "Night of the Living Dead" and "Day of the Dead" on other albums.
Even though most of the songs on this album are homages to movies (some of them being relatively obscure), it is not crucial to have seen the movies prior to listening to the tracks drawn from them. Most of the songs such as "Pumpkin Head" sum up the story fairly accurately while tracks such as "Kong at the Gates" and "Kong Unleashed" portray the feel of key moments in the movie exceptionally well. Speaking of the two "King Kong" inspired tracks, while neither one is musically very pleasing to the ear, they make excellent end caps to the album and help to make it a cohesive whole. Understanding them this way makes them much better tracks than if they were listened to out of context.
Because these tracks are based on sometimes hastily thought out plots and dialogs or movies, there are logical inconsistencies in a few of the lyrics. If no one lived to tell of the Crawling Eye, then how does anyone know about it? And if there are 52 ways to murder someone and the first and second method are the same, does that not imply that there are in fact only 51 ways to murder someone? But these inconsistencies add to the charm of the album and lend to the feeling of low-budget productions.
The only issue with Famous Monsters is that the vocals in "Witch Hunt" can be difficult to hear over the instrumentation.
This is a great album for fans of Punk and low-budget horror movies. With its wide range of coverage, almost everyone should find at least a few songs whose plot they are familiar with.
|1||Kong at the Gates||10||Scarecrow Man|
|2||The Forbidden Zone||11||Die Monster Die|
|3||Lost in Space||12||Living Hell|
|4||Dust to Dust||13||Descending Angel|
|6||Witch Hunt||15||Fiend Club|
|9||Pumpkin Head||18||Kong Unleashed|