BLACK LABEL SOCIETY – Kings Of Damnation

BLACK LABEL SOCIETY - Kings Of Damnation


Spitfire Records
Release date: October 4, 2005

User Review
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A conundrum is defined as “anything that puzzles.” It could be said that “Greatest Hits” albums, in general, are one of the music entertainment industry’s biggest conundrums. To the avid fan, a “Greatest Hits” album typically represents a repackaging of tracks from their favorite musicians that the die hard fan most likely already owns. As is often the case, the die hards are challenged with the decision to buy the release for the measly, typically one or two, unreleased tracks added to entice the buyer. In most cases, these “bonus tracks” tend to be weak, filler tracks.

For record companies, “Greatest Hits” albums represent an opportunity to lure in a new listener to the band at hand. They might also represent an opportunity to fulfill demand for the band between typically scheduled releases. The record company is also faced with the dilemma of what tracks to include, as every fan has their own definition of the arguably “Best” tracks.

Welcome to the Black Label Society (BLS) entry into the foray of “Best Of” releases, represented by Kings Of Damnation, which is a single disc release subtitled 1998-2004. The album’s title might be somewhat misleading, since the tracks contained within actually provide more of a retrospection of Zakk Wylde’s solo career, by including tracks from the Pride And Glory and Book Of Shadows releases. Interestingly enough, Zakk himself was opposed to putting together such a release as he felt that the time wasn’t right for BLS to indulge in such a collection. After seemingly persistent pressure by the record label, and eventually his own wife (“The Warden”), Zakk blessed the project. Barbaranne’s take on the matter was from the view point of the unspoken fans … by not releasing a “Best Of” CD, Zakk would in fact deny fans the relatively low cost opportunity to satisfy any curiosity they might have in his past work. Thankfully, for inquisitive music fans and new BLS fans to be, Zakk did proceed with the project because Kings Of Damnation is a worthy collection of classic, raunchy Metal.

The tracks on this single disc CD are not presented in exact chronological order, but are pretty close as tracks from the 1919 Eternal album are laid out slightly askew. Overall, the four tracks taken from Pride And Glory and Book Of Shadows represent the lighter tracks of the bunch on this nineteen-track compilation. The remainder of the tracks should satisfy the appetite of any willing Metal fan that wants a taste of BLS. Additionally, the two “new unreleased tracks” included are by no means filler/fluff tracks. Both of these tracks rock hard and include some fine guitar work by Zakk. The two tracks alone are worth the price of a single disc admission for die hard Zakk fans.

Bottom line, for the relatively low cost of a single disc, this CD is a worthwhile plunge for potentially new BLS activists looking for sample material to determine if the band is their “cup of tea.” It’s also a worthwhile buy for die hard Zakk fans due to the inclusion of the over-the-top bonus tracks. This is definitely one for all Metal fans to get Wylde about.

Track Listing

  1. Losing Your Mind
  2. Horse Called War
  3. Between Heaven And Hell
  4. Sold My Soul
  5. Bored To Tears
  6. Bleed For Me
  7. TAZ
  8. Counterfeit God
  9. Stronger Than Death
  10. Speedball
  11. Demise Of Sanity
  12. We Live No More
  13. Stillborn
  14. Crazy Or High
  15. House Of Doom
  16. Takillya
  17. Doomsday Inc.
  18. SDMF


  • Scott Jeslis

    Scott is one of the partners at Metal Express Radio. He handles a lot of Metal Express Radio's public relations, screening of new music and radio scheduling. On occasion, he also does reviews and interviews. He has been a proud member of the Metal Express Radio crew since 2004.

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