By Professor Jocko

One of the most unique voices in hard rock, and perhaps also one of the most underrated as far as notoriety is concerned, belongs to none other than Blackie Lawless, the driving force behind the band W.A.S.P. As the only remaining original member of the group during the thirty-plus years of existence, Blackie not only taken the songwriting in a new direction, but has also come full circle on a magnificent musical career. I must say that I’ve been a loyal W.A.S.P. fan since the first time I heard “I Wanna be Somebody” back in 1984; the raucous voice, the pounding rhythm and blistering guitar riffs, and I was hooked. However, what you may remember from those days of their shock-rock phase has changed significantly as the band has matured and found more enlightening subject matter to convey through their music.

Let’s face it, when you have completed 15 studio albums, you need to dig pretty deep to find inspiration for songwriting without recycling the same material. Granted, you also need to walk a fine line with also giving the loyal fans what they are expecting a W.A.S.P. album to be. In my opinion, “Golgotha” is somewhat of an extension of the last two albums, “Babylon” and “Dominator”, but seems to slightly deviate from that recipe because of the emotional element in which Blackie Lawless has incorporated into this particular LP. The opening track called “Scream” does open the album quite effectively, with Blackie’s trademark voice, which has a very uplifting beat and flowing guitar solo to compliment it. W.A.S.P. has used many sexually explicit titles to songs in the past, and perhaps this one leads on to something of that nature when you listen further into the song. 

That uplifting style of writing continues into the next track  “Last Runaway” which could very well border on an anthem because of the continuing speed of the song and dynamic use of guitar. The lyrics are continuous, which blend very well with the support of the rest of the band, and is also seen as a part two, if you will, with the following track called “Shotgun” which uses the same timing and musical foundation as the one before it. However, all of that changes when you get to the next track, “Miss You” which could be the one of very few ballads by W.A.S.P. which is filled with emotion, not just with the lyrics, but the music as well, which has a somber, yet increasingly powerful crescendo as the song continues into the bridge of the song. 

As you continue through the LP, all songs have some very triumphant moments, yet maintain the same emotional element; although a few may become redundant, relying on the same element that draws you in for the punch of the chorus as seen with “Eyes Of My Maker” and “Hero Of The World” which remind me of one of my favorite W.A.S.P. classics called “Sleeping In The Fire” from their debut album. The album title track, “Golgotha” is probably the most religiously influenced song when you consider the lyrics and also that it is the biblical location of where Jesus was crucified. With all of that aside, the chorus of the song is the most memorable part and a solid conclusion to yet another chapter in the W.A.S.P. anthology.