Type O Negative
Dead Again (Reissue)

Reviewing an album from my favorite band, Type O Negative will be like Peter (and his peter) in that infamous Playgirl spread… HARD (allegedly). I started writing for Teeth of course well after Lord Petrus passed away, so I never imagined the time would come where I would not only get to review one of their releases, so I’m not even going to lie about pretending to be objective.

I will try to keep the fanboying to a minimum and talk about the album but pardon me if this gets long and I weave in some tales. Of course, for those who didn’t know, this is the reissue of Dead Again, the band’s last recording. When this album first came out, I enjoyed it almost immediately. One of my best friends told me; “I really like the new Type O Negative song,” which was “September Sun.” He also enjoyed the video. He played it and I told him it was cool, but the real song was over 9 minutes long and the video was around 5 if I recall correctly. He did say it was the first time he liked anything they had released.

What I didn’t know at the time is that it would be their final recording, as Peter passed away in 2010. After previously placing a tombstone on their web page as a prank, I figured it was another joke in typical Type O Negative fashion. However, not too long after the news was confirmed, I was devastated, having never seen them live, now knowing I never would meet Peter, who seemed to have my sense of humor. I did meet Johnny and Kenny when they were performing near me a few years ago in Silvertomb, which nearly made me cry (okay, I did onto Johnny’s shoulder), but I did get to hug Johnny and tell him how much his music has meant to me.

As mentioned above, as a massive fan, I already had this album memorized from start to finish, despite not even knowing I did until I listened again. Standout tracks are difficult for me to choose as I do love them all, but I’ll try.

“Tripping A Blind Man,” track 2, is the first one I’ll pick. With its slow, doomy intro, it’s certainly not out of the ordinary for the Drab 4. It has a serious chorus with which we can all identify, but the final set of lyrics are indicative of the same sense of humor these guys always had. The first time I heard it, my reaction was a definite “WTF?” However, that sense of humor is much like mine, which is a reason why I always loved the band, and why that gets stronger every time I listen to them.

The next one on my list is the previously mentioned, light and almost poppy “September Sun,” saving once again the fact it is indeed over 9 minutes long. It’s mostly keyboard-driven, but god damn it, that chorus gets me every time. “Lost man in time, was his name Peter?” Then, what the hell is that chanting a little over 5 minutes in. The band’s balance of being serious and not taking themselves seriously at all is I believe what is so endearing about them.

I’ll next mention “These Three Things,” which is over 14 minutes and is Type O Negative at their latter career heaviest. A Black Sabbath-styled doom crawl dominates until, as their tracks frequently do, it turns into something completely different, which shortly after also turns into something completely different. The lyrics here are perhaps a bit tongue-in-cheek but certainly point to Pete’s embrace of faith later in his life. What’s certain is there’s never a wasted moment in their longer tracks. Kenny’s guitar tone really stands out in the riffing on this one. It could be the remaster, or maybe it’s always been that way and I didn’t notice.

So… Is this reissue worth the time? Well, we’re not finished yet.

There’s also the live stuff. I wish there was a Blu-Ray or at least a DVD of this stuff, but alas a second CD is what we have. That’s okay because it’s still massively entertaining. For instance, at the beginning of the first “Love You to Death,” Peter mentions having to take a shit but losing the feeling.

They basically have all the hits here as the next one is “Black No. 1,” which of course has the entire crowd singing along. This reminds me of a time in a live audio class (yes, another personal story related to the album) we had mic’d up a classmate’s guitar and were testing it. There was a vocal mic set up at that point, too. To test it, he started playing this song, and I grabbed the vocal mic unprompted and gave my best, and what I must say an excellent Pete Steele impression.

On the last 3 tracks of the album, they’re recorded at Wacken and the sound quality is slightly better. The band is at their heaviest, and I wish there was a video of this performance (maybe there is). The best out of the bunch of these for me is the Wacken version of “Love You to Death.” The band sounds in top form, and the guitars take a more up-front spot in the mix, highlighting the great guitarist Kenny was and is. Josh’s keyboards are also right there beside him. Imagine the song with a more riff-heavy approach and you’re there.

I suppose I’ll wrap this up. I did mention that this would be long and there’s no possible way I could be objective, so at least I was honest. Dead Again is one of those albums in the band’s discography that perhaps rightfully doesn’t get as much love as Bloody Kisses and October Rust, but that’s an unfair comparison as the band members were older and wiser, although I’m sure they’d disagree with the latter. The point is, if you call yourself a fan, this album is probably already in your collection. If for some reason it isn’t, then buy this now. Even if it is, the live CD is worth it, so as an owner of 3 different versions of this album on CD now, I bought the CD long box. I’d say “long story short,” but let’s be honest, this is long story long. If for some reason you let this one pass by, there’s no better time than now and this album gets better with age. I hope it becomes known as a classic because as Kenny recently said, “There will be no reunion, but these songs need to be heard.”

[Visit the band's website]
Written by J Mays
January 3rd, 2023


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