The Misfits DEA.D.ALIVE

The Misfits

DEA.D.ALIVE

Everything Evil/Hundred Handed Inc., 2013

This is the first authorized live Misfits recording since the 1980’s, and it starts a Misfits-DeadAlive-Cover-72little too slowly for my liking. What’s wrong initially, is the first few songs are somewhat tepid. The performances aren’t the problem, the material is. “Curse of the Mummy’s Hand,” “Cold in Hell,” and “Vivid Red,” are  lackluster. Fortunately, the band turns it around starting with “Land of the Dead” and then seriously shifting into high gear with “Dark Shadows.”

From this point on, it’s one fierce blast of brilliance after another. The strongest songs being “Shining,” “American Psycho,” and “Dig Up Her Bones.”

“DEA.D.ALIVE” features songs recorded from the 2012 Halloween shows last year, when the band commandeered Times Square in New York, with the encores recorded before a hometown audience in New Jersey. Robo and Dez,misfits-x600-1359576711 on drums and guitar respectively have significantly stepped up their game and their performances are exceptional throughout. Each now has a decade in the band and their playing reflects the constant touring. There are now subtleties and colors in their delivery missing only a few years before. Jerry Only’s voice is in great form, holding up just fine on slower numbers as it does on the barn burners.

The 14 tracks span recent releases from the most recent 2012’s “The Devil’s Rain,” and nothing older than 1997’s impressive comeback, “American Psycho.”

“Science Fiction/Double Feature” from The Rocky Horror Picture Show is a bit of fun. While not a complete surprise, it’s not the most obvious choice from Rocky Horror to pick.

Closing out with the slow dance floor grind of “Saturday Night” Only is happy to remind anyone who might be interested, that there’s more to The Misfits than their ’77-’83 legacy. And much of it is worth getting knocked around in the pit for.