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Babylon Mystery Orchestra: The Godless, the Godforsaken and the God Damned

"Only a people willing to substitute the word of God with such man-made fictions as evolution and anthropic global warming could so arrogantly insist on fulfilling the Biblical prophecies of the end of days so enthusiastically. Be assured, such arrogance will be appropriately rewarded. You might even call it…social justice."
Sidney Allen Johnson, December, 2009

The Godless, the Godforsaken and the God Damned is the latest release from Babylon Mystery Orchestra, a solo project consisting of just one person, Sidney Allen Johnson. The artist describes his music as "politically incorrect" and after flipping through the accompanying CD booklet, that is definitely the case. Johnson takes his decidedly right-wing viewpoint and attacks society from all possible directions. Johnson spares no one, including pundits of evolutionary theory (Godless), left wing abortionists (A Constitutional Right/Jesus Save), the government (Ruin) and sanctimonious celebrities who force their ideologies down our proverbial throats (Catspaw). This is as much a political/social diatribe as it is a musical work with some of the most controversial lyrics I have heard in rock.

The music is mostly straight ahead heavy rock and metal that owes as much to bands like Black Sabbath as anyone else. Heavy metal riffs dominant these songs, often slow and plodding, with plenty of venomous bite. Keys are used subtlety but add a slightly gothic touch to the overall sound. The music is quite dark and even foreboding at times and I like it just fine. However, it is not all positive, as the vocals of Johnson are somewhat of an acquired taste. He does not so much sing as he does speak in low, very deep tones. And while I have not yet got passed the vocals they do fit the music such as in the slow, heavy riffage in "Benai Elohim" or the heavy lumbering guitar crunch of "Jesus Save" with a hint of psychedelic lead guitar. In "Viva Cristo Rey!", Johnson does occasionally revert to chant-like vocals giving the song a slight Sisters of Mercy vibe.

This album was a bit of a challenge for this reviewer. On the one hand the music is well executed, but on the other hand, I had a difficult time with the vocals. Maybe it will speak to me after a few more spins. That being said, I must give credit to Johnson for taking on such weighty issues and not being afraid to offer his own opinion, and while I do not often agree with his, following the lyrics and quotes, of which there are many, makes for a fascinating read. All I can say is listen to the samples and you be the judge.

Track Listing:
1. Catspaw
2. Apollo
3. Benai Elohim (Semjaza's Return)
4. A Constitutional Right? (I, Lucifer pt. V)
5. Jesus Save…(I, Lucifer pt. VI)
6. Hate Crime
7. Ruin
8. Viva Cristo Rey!
9. "We" Is Killin "Me"
10. Godless
11. You're On Your Own…This Time
12. The Twelfth Imam

Added: March 7th 2010
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Official Site
Hits: 3579
Language: english

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