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Rolling Stone   April 29, 1997


(1 1/2 stars)
American Psycho

   In 1977, the original Misfits wedded the melodic use of power
chords to a B-movie aesthetic. Their second record, "Walk Among
Us," is a classic because singer Glenn Danzig avoided mere camp
by injecting songs like "Mommy, Can I Go Out and Kill Tonight?"
and "Vampira" with adolescent lust, range and nastiness. After a
Halloween show in 1983, the Misfits broke up, leaving behind a
fanatic cult following. A coffin-shape box set -- a fitting
epitaph -- brought together most of their recordings.
   End of story? Not exactly. The Misfits have returned from the
grave - resurrected not by Satan but by litigation. After a
nine-year fight, bass player Jerry Only, a founding member, and
his brother Doyle were allowed to record and tour as the Misfits
(adding Michale Graves on vocals and a new drummer). Graves does
a credible imitation of Glenn Danzig. But the singer's generic
vocals are as likely to career into Dexter Holland territory or a
pointless Elvis imitation ("Day of the Dead"). The band seems
desperate to claim the Misfits' self-proclaimed legacy of
brutality ("Walk Among Us"). The musical formula hasn't changed:
some old-style punk, a little metal and an occasional all-out
thrasher. But this album feels less like the Misfits and more
like Elvira. The song titles read like a quick trip through the
video store ("The Haunting," "This Island Earth," "The Hunger,"
"Mars Attacks," etc.). There are few hooks and no memorable songs
on "American Psycho." All this longtime fan can say is, "Quick,
Van Helsing, a stake."