Killer Fox

Picture of Killer Fox

Orgasm of Death

Killer Fox - Orgasm of Death ©1990 Metal Enterprises
1. Guardians
2. Vixen Of Slaughter
3. Slayer
4. Dark Star
5. Cataracts Of Horror
6. Running Blade
7. The Sign
8. Seventh Silence
9. Branded
10. Killer Fox
11. Pool Of Blood
12. Monster Surgeons
13. Robo Return
14. Lay It Down

SPOILER ALERT: You are about to read a review of the single worst metal album ever made.

Oh, sure, we've all laughed at our fair share of stupid, poorly done metal music. Perhaps fond memories of Grim Reaper's "See You In Hell" video may come to mind, or if you're like me, you've chortled for a minute or sixty over some of the more half-baked attempts of at sounding eeeevil and 'kvlt' made by certain 'true' obscuro black metal artists (Goatlord, anyone?). However, within the halls of shit metal, no band, and I mean NO band, can come close to matching the complete incompetency, the truly awful songwriting, or the flat-out head scratchingly bizarre production decisions which have made Killer Fox's Orgasm Of Death such a uniquely terrible (and incredible) listening experience. And appropriate with the sound of this album, the story of how it came to be in the first place is equally strange and awful. As it may help the reader's listening experience and appreciation of this album by understanding the circumstances under which it was spawned, we will start there before moving on to the disc itself.

Killer Fox, or at least the studio entity known as Killer Fox which produced Orgasm Of Death, found its origin in a ridiculous (and reputedly awful) mid 80's American outfit known as Killer Foxx. Sporting stupid looking Kiss-esque make-up and an unfortunate lack of musical or compositional ability, they released one album, All You Can Eat, before an early 1987 car crash killed half of the band and caused the group to prematurely dissolve. Although death and declared disbandment would typically be enough sufficiently put a stop to a band's fresh output under normal circumstances, such was not to be the case with Killer Foxx. In a move that their label would become notorious for, Killer Foxx's German imprint/distributor, Metal Enterprises (who had releases All You Can Eat in Europe as Going Under) decided to get a few studio musicians together in order to record Killer Foxx's second album (sans an 'x' from the namesake), albeit without the band's participation or consent. Make no mistake about it: despite a band picture ripped from All You Can Eat adorning the back of this album's absurd (and entirely irrelevant to the music) artwork, the resulting album, Orgasm Of Death, features no original members of Killer Fox, but is rather composed entirely of Metal Enterprise cronies hoping to make a buck off of the lousy name of an inactive band. Now if this scenario in of itself seems ridiculous and nonsensical, just wait until you hear the music!

…Presumably, working at a record label called "Metal Enterprises" would imply that that the musicians who created Orgasm Of Death would have actually heard metal music at some point or another. Yet listening to this album, one cannot be so sure. Indeed, it seems as if whoever was performing on this recording had heard of metal, as they appear to be vaguely familiar with certain aspects of the music which have come to stereotypically define the genre. They seem to understand that metal typically has heavy-handed, mythical themes in the lyrics and artwork. Somewhere along the line, they might have heard that the guitars should play repetitive chord and note patterns known as riffs, and that the vocals should be done in some sort of high-pitched register. Yet when the band puts into practice these elements which have seemingly thus far only been described to them, the results sound inescapably awry, like a deaf person attempting to replicate verbal speech; they make noises sure, but it seems that they are uncertain of the noises which they are making. I simply can't imagine that anybody who regularly listens (or has listened) to metal, especially the type of polished NWBHM/power metal the band seems to vaguely draw on here, would knowingly or intentionally create an album that sounded like this. Everything is just…so off! But perhaps rather than further dancing around the issue, I should just get into what this album actually sounds like.

Yes. Hoo…Orgasm Of Death. Where does one begin? Well, to start, the album opens with a musicless, spoken-word intro in which some robot voice rambles on about earth becoming a futuristic battlefield for "hordes of armed monsters" and "robot warriors" created by man(?). Then the herky-jerky, utterly fake drum machine snare comes in, tapping out something which was probably intended to sound like a military beat but instead just sounds like somebody's drum machine fluxuating in and out of the proper tempo, and from this point on it isn't hard to guess that for the remaining forty minutes or so, there will not be a single moment of music which sounds right on this disc. By track two ("Vixen Of Slaughter"), the robot voice and 'military' beat is back, but only for a couple seconds before the awful, cheesy drum machine goes into kickass mode, knocking out a straight forward, up-tempo rock beat, over which the limp bass and guitar play some sort of ugly quasi-riff prior to when the vocals come cackling in. Vocals, mind you, which are so abhorrent, they truly deserve a paragraph all of their own.

Have you ever heard Attila's vocals on Mayhem's classic De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas album? Have you had the misfortune of being anywhere near a speaker from which the sound of Dave Mustaine's singing voice has emanated? Have you ever been privy to the bizarre squealing of egotistical pig man and Smashing Pumpkins leader Billy Corgan? Ever hear the Blessed Death song "Pray For Death"? Actually, have you ever heard of Blessed Death, period? If you have (and I know the Smashing Pumpkins aren't metal, but they serve my point, so whatever), you'll know that they all share one thing in common: distinctively stinky, rotten, irritating, or just all around lousy vocals. However, I couldn't be more honest with anyone reading this when I say that these vocalists, as individually and collectively crappy as they all are, do not hold a birthday candle, nay, a match to the profound suckitude which has cursed ( blessed?) the pipes of Mr. Guy Who Sings On Killer Fox's Orgasm Of Death Album. Making Doc Dart Corbin sound like Jon Bon Jovi, he alternates between high pitched whines which makes him sound like a puppet witch, a shrill, catlike shriek, and some of the most audaciously lame, out-of-range falsetto wails anyone is likely to hear within their short time here on earth. Most of the time, he also babbles out of time over the music, barely comprehensible, yet leading to several head-turning "did he just say that?" moments during few incidents in which he can be comprehended. Did he really just make a reference to a "juicy little pussy" in the song "Killer Fox"? Listen, and hear for yourself! (He does.) These vocals, like this album, are utterly unforgettable, and unlike anything else I've ever heard committed to tape. Thank God.

Now to be sure, the music is no less retarded. I've already mentioned the woefully fake drum machine and the robot voices, so I won't comment upon them again. However, in addition to these artistic missteps, the guitars, which in tone resemble something between a midi synth 'electric guitar' voice and rubbing two stretched sheets of cellophane against each other, play utterly limp, stuttering, go-nowhere 'riffs' (and I use this term very loosely) that are neither catchy nor kickass, and which, except in the event of an explosively shitty (and hilarious) out of place lead, are almost entirely buried beneath the vocals, drums, and bass within the remarkably dry mix. Meanwhile, the bass sounds loud and dead, and the bass lines are sickeningly dull. And I don't mean 'sickeningly' as in "lame" or "bad" (although they are indeed both of these things); I mean that the lines sound so warbly and repetitive, that they actually sound nauseous. I don't think music like this could exasperate a stomach ache, but it sure couldn't help much either. Every once in a while, the band will mix things up with crappily-chorused acoustics or slow, spacey keyboards (such as in the highly atmospheric (and crappy) "Dark Star" (not a Grateful Dead cover) and "Pool Of Blood"), but these additional exercises only further prove that this band cannot seem to do ANYTHING right. By and large though, most of the music on here essentially consists of the session musicians taking profoundly incompetent stabs at the most general assumptions of NWBHM/power metal; yet somehow, in reaching for generica, the resulting music is something that sounds entirely unique in its own bafflingly lousy way. I firmly believe that badness of this high order cannot be strived for. Either you got it, or you don't. If one were to conscientiously try to make an album this bad, it would probably be ponderous and irritating, sure, which indeed parts of this album certainly are, but it would lack the jaw-dropping "what the fuck is this?" factor which makes this album such a uniquely compelling listen (at least until one gets tired of all the robot voices). The mystery men who perform on this album, whoever they are (though they are not Killer Foxx), have it, and they have it in abundance. Color me bedazzled!

Needless to say, I think this is an amazing album which everyone even remotely interested in metal needs to hear. One simply hasn't lived until they've heard just how wonderfully terrible music can be through such fine numbers as "Vixen Of Slaughter", "Running Blade", "Killer Fox" (the band and the song) or "Slayer" (the song, not the band, although one also hasn't lived until they've heard Slayer as well). That said, despite this album's total scarcity, I am not an advocate of evil, illegal activity that will get you thrown in jail, and as such I cannot publically endorse downloading music files that haven't been officially condoned by the artists or their recording company. However, I can say that Orgasm Of Death is available in its entirety on various blog sites across the internet, and that if I were interested in doing something highly illegal that would make the session musicians on this out-of-print album poor from lack of royalties, I would probably download it from one of these websites. Orgasm Of Death is a truly warped, unforgettable musical experience, and the utter wretchedness of metal's lower vestiges cannot be fully understood without having heard it at least once. You may laugh, you may cry, or you may turn it off after becoming irritated with it ten minutes in. However, one thing I'm almost certain that nobody will do after hearing this album is forget it. Indeed, Killer Fox (or whoever is representing them on this disc, anyway) have created a utterly timeless masterwork of shit metal, and that takes a raw, innate talent that is just as rare and unprocurable as that possessed by any heralded composer of music (metal or otherwise). If it's a far reaching, well-rounded perspective on metal music you're looking for, just as the so-called "important albums" are mandatory listens (such as, for instance, Slayer's Reign In Blood), so too, on the opposite side of the tracks (and pregnant, rolling down several flights of stairs), is Killer Fox's Orgasm Of Death. It's an often unheralded, largely inscrutable, generally hilarious piece of the metal puzzle that deserves to be heard. Don't leave earth without it.

Review by Hunter Brawer

Review date: 05/2010

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