I’ve always been a die-hard fan of everything Glenn Danzig. I was introduced to The Misfits at eleven years old and the rest is history. Being a kid in the early days of the internet, it wasn’t always easy to get my hands on everything but I somehow managed to legally (and illegally) complete my collection. From Misfits, Samhain, countless live bootlegs, his solo albums, and even quite a few of his comic books. I saw him perform the How The Gods Kill album in its entirety, the OG Misfits reunion twice, and even was invited to the world premiere of his directorial debut Verotika! To say the works of Glenn Danzig are a passion of mine would be an understatement.
This is why Danzig Sings Elvis is so important.
As a kid growing up in New Jersey, Glenn would skip school to read comic books and watch bad movies on television. One day after seeing Jailhouse Rock, Glenn decided to devote his life to rock n’ roll. He recently told a story to Rolling Stone about how he once worked a week to buy tickets to see Elvis live only to be let down when they were sold days before he made enough. Years later he’d combine that anguish with his love for retro horror and Elvis in one of the most important punk bands in American history, The Misfits.
Throughout the rest of his career in subsequent projects, Glenn sharpened his vocal prowess and always had just the right amount of Elvis influence to balance out his own hard-rock ready style. It’s no surprise he would eventually be labeled the Evil Elvis. With a few covers here and there and the very Elvis-esque Danzig Legacy TV special, fans were elated when Glenn officially announced he was working on recording an EP of Elvis covers.
That EP would eventually evolve into a full LP, Danzig Sings Elvis.
After years and years of delays, Danzig Sings Elvis has finally arrived. A collection of some of Glenn’s favorite Elvis tracks. Despite having a few standards (like the lead single “One Night”) most of the tracklist is made up of deep cuts, plot twists, and even a soundtrack song. The production is raw and almost has a demo feel to it, elevating the notion of Elvis (or Danzig) needing the advantages of modern technology to record a decent album. This also brings up another point; many casual fans and naysayers of Danzig constantly throw shade at the production on just about ever Danzig release not produced by Rick Rubin. If some of the buzz about “One Night” is any indication, not much has changed.
But this comes back to the passion Glenn has for everything he does, be it comics, movies, art, and music.
He could’ve hired a big name producer to track the album. He could’ve mixed the recording differently. He could’ve chosen more of a predictable tracklist. Instead, like every Misfits, Samhain, post-Rubin album, comic book, and film he has worked on, Glenn stayed true to his vision. It sounds how he wants it to sound. It’s the songs that mean a lot to him. Danzig Sings Elvis was never about mimicking Presley’s releases or selling platinum records. It was about having fun recording some of his favorite songs and sharing them with his fans. Every song on this collection showcases that.
This is an important record for Glenn just as how running around trying to get my hands on every Danzig release was important to me as an eleven-year-old. Regardless if masses love or hate it, Danzig Sings Elvis is a passion project and that is the very essence of art. Passion is the reason why this publication exists. It’s why we’re still listening to Elvis Presley, Glenn Danzig, and rock n’ roll in general! With the way the world is now, we need all the passion we can get.
Danzig Sings Elvis is available on cd and limited edition vinyl at Cleopatra Records