This is not a review as much as it is a public service announcement: If you want to have fun, exhaust your laugh muscles, exercise your head-banging tendons, break out some embarrassing dance moves, and rock the hell out, then you should listen to Tragedy’s album “Death To False Disco-Metal”. And just in case you don’t yet know who or what Tragedy is, I’ll simply quote the band’s Facebook page: “Tragedy takes your favorite Bee Gees, disco and soft-rock classics and reinvents them in a Heavy Metal fashion.”
After reading that, you may have some legitimate questions, such as: “Isn’t that bat-shit crazy?” “Does this actually exist?” “Is it totally and ridiculously entertaining?” And the answers are: yes, it is; yes, it does; and oh, yes.
Tragedy is a spandexed, makeupped, bedazzled crew of musical maniacs who are not afraid to show a bit of skin (and gut), shake a little (or a lot) of booty, while playing heavy-metallized disco. As nuts as the concept sounds, these guys are real rockers: the band has played Hammerfest and Bloodstock, toured the UK, and sold out venues across the US and Europe.
Initially Tragedy focused on turning tunes by the BeeGees into hard rocking, metal-screaming awesomeness, but they’ve branched out a bit. On this latest album they attack ABBA and KC And The Sunshine Band (among others) with gusto, bending the music to their will. (Side note: if Tragedy’s version of “Dancing Queen” doesn’t make you laugh or at least crack a smile, you might not be human. Please consult your cyborg manufacturer.)
There’s not much I can say about the tunes on this album: you kind of have to hear them in person. I mean, really. On “It’s Raining Men”, Tragedy bashes The Weather Girls’ dance-able hit with Slayer’s “Raining Blood”; while “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)” and “Dancing Queen” mutate ABBA into heavy metal with surprising ease (even the lyrics seem to fit somehow).
The most subversive track on the album might be Tragedy’s remake of KISS’ “I Was Made For Lovin’ You”. Taking this famous disco-ball hit by a legendary rock band, and then turning it into a heavy metal disco cover? WTF? Does that even make sense? I’m sure it doesn’t, but whatever: this tune is irresistible. “Death To False Disco-Metal” also contains a fab version of “Total Eclipse Of The Heart”, subverting an insufferable piece of 80s kitsch into something hard-rockingly and flamboyantly gorgeous.
Seriously. If you love music and you have a sense of humour, subject yourself to Tragedy’s heavy metal disco craziness right now.
Lineup (seems legit):
- Barry Glibb: lead vocals, lead rhythm guitar, lead lead guitar, lead back-up vocals
- Mo’Royce Peterson: lead vocals, lead rhythm guitar, lead lead guitar, lead back-up vocals
- Robin Gibbens: lead vocals, lead rhythm guitar, lead back-up vocals, lead cowbell
- Andy Gibbous Waning: lead vocals, lead bass, lead back-up vocals
- The Lord Gibbeth: lead drums
- It’s Raining Men
- Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)
- Taking The 5th On Disco Mountain
- I Was Made For Lovin’ You
- Dancing Queen
- Off The Wall
- I Wanna Dance With Somebody
- Total Eclipse Of The Heart
- I Was Made For Lovin’ You (German Version)
(Previously posted at Hard Rock Nights.)