Is it a hit, *hit or miss?
Danzig – Circle of Snakes 
by Zane Ewton

Danzig – Circle of Snakes
Label: Evilive Records
Hit, *hit or Miss?:  Hit

Glenn Danzig is closing in on 30 years of rock and roll.  30 years of cranky, uncompromising, darker side of life music.  He has been the central figure of three influential bands.  Co-founder of the Misfits, the band pioneered hardcore punk and have become a seminal band of the genre, despite only 6 years and a few albums.  The heavy metal band Samhain quickly followed and in just another few years became a noted outfit.
After the demise of Samhain, Danzig created his longest lasting project with the band that he named after himself.  Danzig, the band, started as a heavy blues-based group with simple and brooding songs.  Best known for the hit “Mother”, Glenn took his band in a different direction experimenting with gothic moods and textures.  These later albums have been out-of-step with the current mainstream, but that has never mattered.  Danzig continued through the 1990’s and into the 2000’s doing exactly what he wanted to do.
After the (now false) statement that a touring Danzig will be no more, the band has released Circle of Snakes.  A continuation of the return to form that I Luciferi enacted.  Circle of Snakes is a heavy record.  Everything you would want out of this band is here.  Great guitar work, throbbing bass and driving drums build the foundation for Glenn to do his dastardly deeds.
“Wotans Procession” begins the proceedings as a marching instrumental that fades to black, followed by a Tommy Victor riff crushing into “Skincarver”.  The title track falls into a very familiar Danzig sound, but it is also the most pleasing with a big, chest-beating chorus and memorable riff.
“1000 Devils Reign” falls in line with the title track but “Skull Forest” is a slower, creepier song that builds to a climactic end.  “Hellmask” is a faster, hardcore track that would have fit on any Misfits album.  “When We Were Dead” is a brooding number that doesn’t hold interest as long as the other tracks.  The lower half of the album is the weaker half, songs like “Night, BeSodom” and “My Darkness” are decent enough, but don’t measure up to the standout tracks.  The finale comes with the epic “Black Angel, White Angel”.  
From start to finish, Circle of Snakes, is full of ups and downs, darks and lights, but proves to be a completely satisfying album.  It is a shame that the end of Danzig, the band, may be near.  If so, Circle of Snakes would be a fitting end to a band who has released some great music.  If not, it is exciting to see that they could get even better.

CD Info and Links

Wotans Procession
Skin Carver
Circle Of Snakes
1000 Devils Reign
Skull Forrest
Hell Mask
When We Were Dead
Night, Besodom
My Darkness
Black Angel, White Angel
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