Double Live Bootleg (Rotten)
By Scott Hefflon
Ah, sweet Acid Bath, how we miss you! Before black depression poet extraordinaire Dax Riggs sobbed so eloquently for Agents of Oblivion (or his new project, Dead Boy and the Elephantmen, available only through their site, www.deadboyandtheelephantmen.com), he screamed and paced sticky stages with Acid Bath. They’re from New Orleans, and it shows. Double Live Bootleg is, as it sounds, a bunch of quaintly amateur live show recordings and tripod-in-the-rehearsal-room “videos.” Classic shit, in other words. Play “where’s the singer?” with your friends. Or howzabout a round of “Who’s hair is that headbanging over the camera lens?” Fun for the whole family. Well, if your family likes growling/howling to “Finger Painting of the Insane” and “Cassie Eats Cockroaches.” Mine had to be tied to chairs to join in, but I’m a trained professional, kids, so don’t try this at home. And if you do, it’s on you…
Double Live Bootleg has 32 tracks, including most of the faves, and there’s a barely-recognizable cover of Iron Butterfly’s “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida,” but, uh, Slayer’s version on the Less Than Zero soundtrack is better. There’s a huge omission though… “Dead Girl” ain’t on here. It was the last track on Paegan Terrorism Tactics and it provided the link from the more screamcore sludge metal of Acid Bath to the simply-strummed, mostly acoustic fitful dreaming that was Agents of Oblivion.
To compensate, Acid Bath choose songs for this DVD that’re gloriously mournful, keeping the “mindless screaming” to a minimum. This ain’t nü metal, after all. Dax sounded a lot like the dude from Trouble back then, and I’m glad he followed his tortured Muse further down that left-hand path and really developed his own Voice. So part NOLA sludge hatecore screaming, part stoner messiah, Acid Bath were before their time (as if stoner rock ever really hit it big, or ever will, cuz hits and poster pull-outs ain’t exactly the strong suit of this shaggy, troll-like genre), but now at least there’s a DVD to show you how beautiful, ugly, loud, sweaty, and untamed these guys were.