Whitehouse - Great White Death Special Edition CD review review by Mark Paytress from Record Collector magazine
Special? I thought all Whitehouse releases were special in their own open-sore-on-the-corpse-of-rock way. Special in that each was a reminder of the debased nature of man, thus liberating the listener from the hypnotisng spell of mere entertainment. Trouble was, as with Throbbing Gristle, each successive release had a diminishing effect, with the result that what was once termed anti-music soon generated a business-as-usual familiarity with so-called anti-music. Any music that triggers fill-your-pants terror and hysterical laughter, usually simultaneously, has at least as much value as the toe-tapping, tear-jerking, wallet-pinching pop that occupies 95% of the record market.
So what's special about this reissue of an album originally issued in 1985, and then again in 1991? In the Whitehouseian sense, it boils down to this: the addition of "My Cock's On Fire", in its full, unexpurgated 14-minute (morning) glory; a high-gloss 12-page booklet, which includes lyrics (though singer William Bennett has remarkable good diction), technical info, photos and reprints of a couple of vintage slag-offs; and newly-remastered sound, which in this case is certainly worthwhile, bearing in mind that Whitehouse make full use of th esonic spectrum.
Containing some of the band's more memorable material - "Ass-Destroyer",
"Rapemaster", "You Don't Have To Say Please", "I'm
Comin' Up Your Ass", and the aforementioned fiery cock song - "Great
White Death" is virtually a greatest hits. Bennett is in full throttle
for much of the record, as befits a man fully immersed in the sadistic mindset.
It's a hard life, exploring reality through art, but someone's got to do it.
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