The first official trailer for W.A.S.P.'s upcoming 25th-anniversary release, "Re-Idolized", can be seen below.
In 1992 W.A.S.P. released "The Crimson Idol". It's the story of Jonathan Aaron Steele, an abused child looking for love. Discovering music years later, he rises to international superstardom. Later followed by a catastrophic fall.
2017 marks the 25th anniversary of the original release, which is still considered to be the best album of W.A.S.P.'s career, and one of the greatest concept albums of all times. "The Crimson Idol" undoubtedly belongs in every metal head’s record collection. The album about the anti-hero Jonathan Steele was originally intended to be accompanied by a movie, with several hundred hours of film that were shot to create approximately 50 minutes of movie footage.
This film has never been released — until now!
Napalm Records has announced "Re-Idolzed", the 25th anniversary of the iconic hit album plus the original "The Crimson Idol" movie on DVD and Blu-ray. For the first time ever as originally intended — film and soundtrack united — released as one product!
"Re-Idolized" will be available on Blu-ray, DVD, CD, and vinyl later this year.
"The Crimson Idol" tells the twisted tale of a suicidal rock and roll icon and the perils that come with fame. With guitarist Chris Holmes no longer a member of W.A.S.P., Blackie Lawless recorded "The Crimson Idol" with guitarist Bob Kulick and drummers Stet Howland and Frankie Banali. Voted one of the Top 20 conceptual albums of all-time by Metal Hammer magazine, "The Crimson Idol" is obviously more of a soundtrack than, say, a straight rock 'n' roll album.
Issued internationally in 1992, "The Crimson Idol" was not made available in the United States until 1993 and it gave W.A.S.P. the band's first U.S. radio hit single with "Hold On To My Heart". Ironcally enough, it was the way Capitol Records handled the push (or lack thereof) on "Hold On To My Heart" that made Blackie decide to leave the label.
"The main theme of 'The Crimson Idol' which is a haunting acoustic guitar riff was in a [pre-W.A.S.P. band] SISTER song called 'What I Am'," Blackie said. "I've always been very economical with my songwriting. If something wasn't working out I'd scrap it. But if something was a good idea but not ready, or didn't quite fit what we were doing at the time, I'd go back to it later and re-work it."
During an interview with RIP magazine, Lawless had this to say about the album: "'The Crimson Idol' is an enormously complicated story. There are ten songs on it and each one is a euphemism for something else. Nothing on this album is really what it appears to be at first glance. Everything is a symbol for something else. The story was written from a satirical point of view. That means that wherever a person is at their life and whoever's viewpoint they're listening to in the story are going to determine the story they're going to get. If you're 18 and you listen to it, you're going to see one thing. If you go back and listen to it five or ten years later, you're going to get a completely different story. I didn't want to create fast food for the ears. I wanted something that I thought was going to have longevity."
Blackie also spoke about "The Crimson Idol" in a 2010 chat with Metal Asylum. He stated at the time: "'The Crimson Idol' was about a kid who was a musician and gets famous and all this stuff, and he finds out fame really isn't what he is looking for, but, really, 'Crimson Idol' is about love. It's a real simple story, and at the time when I did it, I thought it was more complex than it was. But looking back on it, you can see what it really boils down to, and I'm not diminishing the value of the album because it is real powerful. Part of the reason it worked is because its something everyone can relate to. Especially that whole idea of not getting what you want from your parents, or being loved in general; that's what struck a nerve in people. And at the time, I was almost writing it as a footnote, but when I look back, it was much bigger in the story than I gave it credit for."