Behind The Mask
The metal community was stunned in November 2011 when Cory Smoot, better known as guitarist Flattus Maximus of GWAR, was found dead on the band’s tour bus. Smoot had been recording material for a side project during the previous year, and at the suggestion of GWAR, he decided to use it for their most recent effort, Bloody Pit Of Horror. Metal Blade has seen fit to release the songs as When Worlds Collide, the only entry from The Cory Smoot Experiment.
The ever-talented Smoot performs everything on the record, including vocals and drums. And owing to the arrangement with GWAR, several of the songs are “demo” versions of tracks on Bloody Pit. Opening tracks “The Blood Red,” “Fortunate Sun” and “Religion Is Fiction” would later be rerecorded as “Zombies, March!”, “Come The Carnivore” and “A Gathering Of Ghouls,” and it’s interesting to hear how little they changed, save for the vocal parts. The other songs echo GWAR’s new direction, with “Mandatory Purgatory” and “Countdown To Oblivion” fitting in nicely with GWAR’s “heaviest of metal” approach. Smoot also takes the opportunity to stretch out, exploring more progressive territory in the title track and the crushing “Hollow Tree,” and showing his melodic side on “Brainfade” and the dark-n-heavy funk of closer “Sloth Loves Chunk.” However, it’s definitely clear that Smoot was still working on the tracks when he passed. The recording quality is slightly above a demo, and a few mistakes and general looseness can be heard throughout.
Smoot left a vast legacy as Flattus and as a guitarist after his death. Even a cursory listen to When Worlds Collide shows what a powerful influence he was in shaping GWAR’s music. Fans looking for a larger window into GWAR should definitely pick this up. Beyond that, Worlds is a decent effort from a great musician who will be sorely missed.