Review: Lizzy Borden - Appointment with Death
Label: Metal Blade Records
Released: October 2, 2007
When I saw that Lizzy Borden had a new album coming out, I had mixed expectations. While I liked several of their early albums despite the silly theatrics, I began to lose interest in the late 80s and didn't even pay attention to their thin output over the last 17 or so years. Face it, odds are that a band who faded out of their prime and then had huge recording gaps in their catalog isn't going to put together anything all that exciting. Still, I had some hope and that hope was rewarded with Appointment with Death.
This is the first Lizzy Borden album in seven years (unless you count the Starwood album from 2004) and all I know is they must've been resting up for this one, because it flat out rocks with a nearly live energy. It isn't without its flash, especially some of the Maiden-esque dual guitar leads and Lizzy's still strong voice, but none of that feels gratuitous as it does with so many metal artists. While a lot of metal has become more angular, only using melody to counter dissonance and crunch, Lizzy Borden walks the fine line between metal heaviness and hard rock melody. With little exception, it is an 80s metal album, yet the band's enthusiasm keeps it from feeling old.
While it's solid, it may not brilliant musically and it certainly is not brilliant lyrically. The album's theme obviously revolves around death which is frankly rather silly. However, despite its attempt to bare Lizzy's dark side, it's more fun than anything else. There's no doubt that it's a one-dimensional album, but the band does thrive in that dimension. It's unusual for an album to not offer anything new and still be worthwhile, but Lizzy Borden has served up an exception with Appointment with Death.