on March 9, 2000
Hellbilly Deluxe confirms several things that many of us suspected all along. One: Rob Zombie was pretty much the sole creative contributor to White Zombie. Two: Zombie has watched waaay too many "B" monster movies.
Strangeness notwithstanding, "Hellbilly" has a pile of great songs. "Superbeast" is a chest-pounder, kicking the record off to an adrenaline-fueled start. "Living Dead Girl" and "Spookshow Baby" are personal favorites, showcasing some melody, some diversity, and Zombie's excellence in lyric writing. "Meet the Creeper" and "The Ballad of Resurrection Joe and Rosa Whore" are also excellent songs.
The album runs the gamut from slow to fast, hard to, er... less hard, but never loses it's pop-culture influenced sense of humor. Rob Zombie has captured a bit of Alice Cooper and the Tubes' ability to have fun onstage while still making great music that resonates with it's fans.
Sellout? Nah... Zombie would have to produce a boy band to truly sell out. "Hellbilly Deluxe" is one for the rock record books.
on May 13, 2002
This album changed everything for me. I first heard songs off of this in 1998 when Twisted Metal III came out(RZ was on the soundtrack). They still kick. It's both very sad and very true that Rob Zombie dumped his former guitarist and bassist so he could go solo, replacing the name White Zombie with his name and the two previously mentioned talented musicians with two fools. Regardless, Hellbilly Deluxe delivers. Aside from all the filler tracks, lead-ins, and intros, the songs hit with a bullet train force of industrial rhythm, techno machinery, and power metal guitar. "Superbeast" has that MACK truck quality, with a cool solo and Zombie's creepy voice transfers for the chorus and verses. "Dragula" is a dance club staple for being as incredibly rave-able as it is a mosher. "Living Dead Girl" is a pop-oriented number that falls a bit shy of the other songs, but it's still good. "Demonoid Phenomenon" is nothing but a piledriver, "Spookshow Baby" mixes an Arabian-sounding guitar twang into the song to mix it up and "The Ballad Of Resurrection Joe..." makes another transition from quiet verses to a rocking, shocking, chorus. The crowning glory is "Meet The Creeper." That song is perfect! All there is to it. Grab this album, Astro Creep 2K and Sinister Urge for creepy, monolithically heavy, fun, dance-able, mayhem!...
Rob Zombie has certainly managed to forge his own special place in the hard-rocking halls of popular music. He went all out in the gimmick department, but it definitely works. Having little familiarity with White Zombie at the time this album was released, Living Dead Girl served as my mode of introduction to this "unusual" artist. I immediately found his music disturbing, unique, and definitely appealing, but I initially hesitated in buying Hellbilly Deluxe. Once I heard Dragula, though, I had to get the album. As a horror fan, I enjoy Zombie's close affiliation with the darker paths of life. He can be a little scary, I suppose, but the hint of whimsy that can be discerned in his music is made much clearer when you get a look at the little booklet that comes with the CD. The disturbing cartoon references bring to my mind images of wonderful old monster movies, Weird Tales magazine, and those vintage horror comics that eventually became victims of government citizenship. Rob Zombie knows how to have fun with extreme horror, and that makes him a great guy in my book.
Personally, I love the way words and small speeches are incorporated into his music (not to mention the joys of hearing random screams in the background); it helps make listening to Zombie a surreal experience. This does mean that you don't really have 13 songs on the album, though; a few of the tracks are short musical bridges connecting one great song with another. This is not a problem, though, because everything goes together to make this album an experience that transcends simple music. As for the music itself, I love its driving beat, horrorific overtones, and powerful vocals. The guy's not going to win any singing contests, but it doesn't matter because his presentation is excellent in all facets of the music-great lyrics with pulsing, rhythmic beats that worm their way into your brain and chest, letting you pretend for a while that your heart is black and nothing really matters beyond experiencing life in its most fundamental and necessarily unclean ways. I wouldn't want to go out in public in a Zombie-fied frame of mind, but this music is a great way to relieve the stress of mundane modern life.
Living Dead Girl and Dragula are the most familiar tracks on here, but there are plenty of songs of the same high caliber. Superbeast gets the show off to a great start; the relentlessly pulsing beat of Spookshow Baby is awesome; Meet the Creeper and The Ballad of Resurrection Joe more than hold their own, and Return of the Phantom Stranger has a mesmerizing quality in its monotone lyrics, sneaking up on you from side to side before unleashing its full torrent of force upon both ears simultaneously. There is a great cohesiveness to the album as a whole, making it almost impossible for you to simply pick and choose different tracks to listen to; Hellbilly Deluxe essentially requires you to listen to the whole thing in all its complete glory ever time you put the disc in your CD player.
on March 8, 2004
Call of the Zombie (0:30): The intro to the CD. It had a eerie little girl talking with horror music in the background. Its short but freaky, just like Rob Zombie! I like it.
Super Beast (3:40): This is a very good song with good instruments and vocals. I first heard this song off of Twisted Metal 3. It's one of the better songs on the CD.
Dragula (3:42): Rob Zombie's song about Herman Munster's drag racing car, Dragula. I love this song, the lyrics are great and the beat is amazing. I first heard this song playing Twisted Metal 4. A little better then Super Beast, but still not the best on the CD, it's cool though.
Living Dead Girl (3:21): A creepy, yet really catchy, song about a Zombie girl on display in a circus. I like the lyrics and the "What are you thinking about?" is awesome. It is one of Zombie's most off the wall songs, but still not my favorite.
Perversion (1:43): Instrumental, too short. If it was longer it would have been so much better, but its good. It's eerie which is what we expect from Mr. Zombie. It's good, for an instrumental.
Demonoid Phenomenon (4:11): A fast paced and rockin' song. The lyrics sound cool and the whole thing is super. Zombie while saying "Demonoid Phenomenon" sounds really cool. I like this song, but is it my favorite on this CD?...no.
Spook Show Baby (3:38): My favorite! They lyrics are the best and the beat is fantastic. It sounds really awesome. The beat sometimes has an Arabic beat to it which adds to its greatness. This song makes the CD all worth it. The other songs are very good, but this one is great.
How to Make A Monster (1:38): Probably the worst song on the CD. The lyrics are low and hard to hear and the music is low too, its just too quiet, and short. This song needed to by louder and longer. If it was I'm sure it would have been up there with Dragula. Not the best, but still ok and nice to listen to.
Meet the Creeper (3:13): My second favorite song on the CD. "The devil is in all of you!" opens up the song and gets ur attention through out the rest. The lyrics rock like no other (except SSB). The beat is cool and Zombie sounds awesome in this. I love this song, its on my top 3.
The Ballad Of Resurrection Joe And Rosa Whore (3:55): The third favorite song on this CD. The lyrics are kind of hard to get at first, but listen to it a few times and you will get it. I really like this song, the lyrics and music and beat and all the stuff is top notch. This is one of Zombie's best rockin' songs on the CD. (adult language warning).
What Lurks on Channel X? (2:29): Probably the second worst song on the CD, but I still like it. The lyrics are hard to hear but I still think it sounds awesome, I really enjoy this song. The drums are the best part. It just needs to be a little more clearer and maybe just a little longer too, but I like it a lot.
Return Of The Phantom Stranger (4:31): It starts off with a chant thing followed by a really cool beat. The lyrics to this song rank up with the greats and the tune. It really is a good song, even though the words are kind of hard to hear at first, but soon you'll get it. I really enjoy this songs lyrics, beat and the way Zombie sounds.
The Beginning of the End (1:52): Instrumental. Needs to be longer! Zombie's instrumentals are too short. This instrumental isn't as good as Perversion but it is more rock and less horror. It's a good song, I like it. But it just needs to be longer!
Total CD run time: 38:29. Is it worth the money? Sure its short, but the songs don't need to be long to deliver their greatness. Yes, it is well worth the cost.
on December 6, 2004
Why did they bother to make an Edited version of Hellbilly Deluxe? The only swears are on the Song the Ballad of Resurrection Joe and Rosa Whore, which here is just titled the Ballad of Resurrection Joe. So you get one edited track! Count it, 1. Also the artwork is screwed around with. The Pentagram and the x on Rob's Forehead are removed, as well as artwork in the sleeve and no lyrics are given. The skull and Crossbones along the side are also gone. I purchased this by mistake a long time ago because it wasn't clearly labeled as a clean CD. that only infuriates me even more. This Edit is absolutely pointless and most of all, Stupid.
on May 11, 1999
I borrow a lot of CD's from my bud Eric and I was kind of worried when I popped this one in my CD player. I never cared for White Zombie and the fact that on the cover he looks like a cross between Charles Manson and a critter from a George Romero movie didn't help. So, I was expecting something along the lines of Marilyn "Look at me, I'm GOTHIC!" Manson. Thankfully as the first track played my fears were put to rest. where as Marilyn goes out of his way to gross you out, Zombie heads in the opposite direction, tackling his songs with a kitschy, B-Movie/comic book kind of campiness that would make Glenn Danzig smile. Add to that musical style that splices techno with EXTREMELY heavy metal, throw in Zombie's gravelly vocals and you've got a winning combo. (WARNING: Do not play "Superbeast" while driving, that guitar solo alone will make you want to break speed limits.)The only problem: It's too short, clocking in at under 40 minutes. But heck, I'd buy it, if for no other reason, to run up to my religous zealot of an ex-stepmother, shove the cover in her face, and shout "NIENER NIENER NIENER!!"
on December 27, 2012
I really got into White Zombie and Rob Zombie when I was in middle school, and out of everything, I still say that Hellbilly Deluxe is at the top of the list. The album feels like a very natural precursor to Sinister Urge after having heard both albums. I would link the two together as a part one and part two before I would place any other Zombie albums together, and that includes Hellbilly Deluxe II. This is classic Zombie.
on December 23, 2002
I think Rob Zombie has become a household word. Everyone knows he rocks. He's got fans ranging from black clad goths, head bangers, normal kids, even posers (unfortunately). He's one of the best theatrical rock acts out there, taking much influence from Alice Cooper. This, his debut is a wonderfully eccentric and experimental album. Many people simply call Zombie "Metal", but Metal is only one influence. There are industrial, electro, gothic, psychadellic, acid rock, rockabilly, and soundtrack elements as well. I don't think people give Zombie enough credit for being so experimental. Anyway, for those who think he is some kind of devil worshipping, evil destroyer of the souls of America's youth, I say this: I myself am a Christian. It irks me when I see pastors of all people going out and giving Christianity a bad name. DO you think people will even listen to you when you come out and attack offensively like this? The same goes for those protesting Marilyn Manson's concerts. Rob Zombie is not a satanist. If you don't see the tongue-in-cheek humor and irony in his lyrics, you're just blind. You might as well be protesting every horror movie and every halloween party that will ever be attended by our "mislead youth". It's all good, clean, spooky fun. Nothing more! Like I said, I'm a christian and I do not find anything subversive, satanic, or truly "evil" in this music at all. Just creepy, b-movie inspired rock & roll, and I think it's alot of fun. So stop putting more kids off to Christianity! Rob Zombie rocks!
Alice Cooper (who has been openly christian for 10 years now) thinks so too.
on January 20, 2001
Before I bought this album I wasn't much of a fan of death/black/heavy metal (it wasn't until several weeks after I'd bought it that I learned that Rob Zombie used to be in White Zombie). I'm still not much of one if the truth be told, but at least I have something to add to discussions about the genre.
I'd heard "Dragula" 5 or 6 times before I decided it was worth trying to buy, as it turned out the album had only been released a few weeks beforehand. I hadn't heard anything else on the album so it took me by surprise when I put it on.
The major shock I got was that there is a sense of humour evident in in all the tracks on this album - a very black one but a sense of humour nonetheless. Another shock was that most of the tracks actually had vaguely normal guitar riffs and so on (I've now found out that this is abnormal).
Certainly this isn't going to be an album where, a few hours after listening to it, you'll think "wow, Rob was so deep with that lyric" ("Rob has got serious issues" is what I thought after I'd heard it once). It is, however, a very good album to put on when you're annoyed at the world - hearing someone else rant and rave comically has a very cathartic effect, similar to wataching John Cleese in "Fawlty Towers". The catchiness of the lyrics makes it useful for singalongs (only if you're stretched for other songs of course).
In short, a very useful album to have around just in case you need to pretend knowledge of Death Metal. I've missed off a star because it does date a bit.
Review #335. Rob Zombie's first solo work after he took a short leave from White Zombie. I remember telling fans that he'll go solo ONLY if this debut of his sells good enough for him to spark up a solo career. Looks like I was right, as Rob never went back to White Zombie since. Tracks here that will remain as true 'extreme metal' gems to us loyal long-timers include "Call Of The Zombie", the *ss-stomper "Dragula" (still like catching the video for this song), "How To Make A Monster", the awesome mosh-pit staple "Living Dead Girl" and "Spookshow Baby". Simply a must-have, if there's still anyone out there that doesn't possess a copy.