Back from the Dead (Spinal Tap album)

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Back from the Dead
Studio album by Spinal Tap
Released June 16, 2009
Genre Comedy rock
Heavy metal
Label Spuzzle
Polymer
Spinal Tap chronology
Break Like the Wind
(1992)
Back from the Dead
(2009)

Back from the Dead is the third studio album by Spinal Tap, though it is the fourteenth when including their fictional albums. Released on June 16, 2009, it is the first release under the Spinal Tap name since 1992's Break Like the Wind.

Concept and music[edit]

The concept of Back from the Dead is that Spinal Tap has reunited in honor of the 25th anniversary of This Is Spinal Tap, and have launched an "unwigged and unplugged" tour.[1][2]

Back from the Dead features re-recorded versions of songs featured in This Is Spinal Tap and its soundtrack album, and five songs not previously available on album: "Warmer Than Hell", "Short and Sweet", "Celtic Blues", "Rock 'n' Roll Nightmare", and "Back from the Dead".[1][3] "Jazz Oddyssey", which appeared briefly during the film, appears in three parts within Back from the Dead.[1][3] "Sex Farm" appears in a funk-oriented version, while "(Listen to the) Flower People" appears in a reggae-oriented version.[1]

Back from the Dead features guest appearances by Phil Collen, Keith Emerson, John Mayer and Steve Vai.[3]

Release and reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]
NME 11/10 stars[4]
Planet Sound 7/10 stars[5]

Back from the Dead was released on June 16, 2009.[3][6] The album is packaged with a DVD featuring commentary on each of the album's tracks.[7] Preceding the album's release, it was streamed for free by Entertainment Weekly and Spinner.[3][8] An exclusive version of Back from the Dead was made available through Amazon MP3, featuring a newly recorded version of "(Listen to the) Flower People" in its original style.[9] An additional track, "Saucy Jack", was released through the official Spinal Tap website.[3] Fifteen of the songs have been released as downloadable content for the Rock Band video game series,[10][11] along with "Short and Sweet" appearing as a packaged song in Lego Rock Band.[12]

The packaging for Back from the Dead can be unfolded to form a diorama of Spinal Tap performing on stage, which the band members poorly demonstrated during an appearance on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien.[13]

While Allmusic reviewer Stephen Thomas Erlewine felt that the straightforward approach of the re-recorded songs hurt the remakes, which "pale next to the originals", he wrote that the new songs are "top-notch, eclipsing the often forced Break Like the Wind, and striking the right balance between parody and real rock & roll. They're the reason to hear Back from the Dead, which otherwise is just a tad too satisfied with its own humor for its own good."[1] Back from the Dead was nominated for Best Comedy Album for the 52nd Grammy Awards.[14]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Tonight I'm Gonna Rock You Tonight" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 2:42
2. "Back from the Dead" (originally released online in 2000[15]) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Vanston 4:06
3. "(Funky) Sex Farm" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 4:30
4. "Rock 'n' Roll Creation" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 5:05
5. "Jazz Oddyssey I"   Guest / McKean / Shearer / Vanston / Bissonette 2:19
6. "Gimme Some Money" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 2:33
7. "Rock 'n' Roll Nightmare" (original version from The T.V. Show[16]) Guest / McKean / Shearer 3:19
8. "Heavy Duty" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 4:57
9. "America" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 3:39
10. "Jazz Oddyssey II"   Guest / McKean / Shearer / Vanston / Bissonette 2:00
11. "(Listen to the) Flower People (Reggae Stylee)" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 3:20
12. "Hell Hole" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 3:34
13. "Big Bottom" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 3:39
14. "Celtic Blues" (original version from The Return of Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer 1:25
15. "Jazz Oddyssey III"   Guest / McKean / Shearer / Vanston / Bissonette 2:16
16. "Warmer Than Hell" (originally released in 2007[17]) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Vanston 3:51
17. "Stonehenge" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 4:30
18. "Short and Sweet" (Guitar [Solo] – John Mayer, Phil Collen, Steve Vai) Music: Guest / McKean / Shearer – Lyrics: McKean / O'Toole 6:35
19. "Cups and Cakes" (original version on This is Spinal Tap) Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 1:40
Total length:
66:00
Amazon MP3 exclusive (only available in US, UK and Germany)
No. Title Writer(s) Length
20. "(Listen to the) Flower People (2009)"   Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 2:48
iTunes exclusive
No. Title Writer(s) Length
20. "Sex Farm (2009)"   Guest / McKean / Shearer / Reiner 3:13
SpinalTap.com exclusive
No. Title Writer(s) Length
20. "Saucy Jack"   Guest / McKean / Shearer 1:38

Personnel[edit]

Spinal Tap
Additional musicians

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Review of Back from the Dead". Allmusic. Retrieved 2009-06-15. 
  2. ^ Kaczmarski, Sandy (May 31, 2009). "Unwigged and Unplugged: Spinal Tap Unwiped". Huffington Post. Retrieved June 15, 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f "SPINAL TAP: Entire New Album Available For Streaming". blabbermouth.net. June 15, 2009. Archived from the original on June 18, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-15. 
  4. ^ NME Review
  5. ^ Earls, John. "Review: Spinal Tap/Back From The Dead". Teletext. Retrieved June 22, 2009. 
  6. ^ "Best bets: Jack Black starts at ‘Year One’". MSNBC. June 14, 2009. Archived from the original on June 16, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-15. 
  7. ^ "Eleven heaven for Spinal Tap". The Age. Australia. June 12, 2009. Archived from the original on June 15, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-15. 
  8. ^ Pastorek, Whitney (June 2, 2009). "Spinal Tap's 'Back from the Dead,' now streaming exclusively on EW's Music Mix!". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on June 6, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-15. 
  9. ^ "ASIN: B002BAV6MS". Amazon MP3. Retrieved 2009-06-15. 
  10. ^ Willis, Danny (June 12, 2009). "New to Rock Band: Spinal Tap, and…Evanescence?". San Jose Mercury News. Archived from the original on June 15, 2009. Retrieved June 15, 2009. 
  11. ^ "DLC Week of 8/4". Harmonix. July 31, 2009. 
  12. ^ "LEGO Rock Band – Full Track List!". Harmonix. October 14, 2009. 
  13. ^ The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien, June 15, 2009
  14. ^ "GRAMMY.com". The Recording Academy. December 2, 2009. 
  15. ^ "SpinalTapFan.com page on "Back from the Dead"". SpinalTapFan.com. August 16, 2010. 
  16. ^ "SpinalTapFan.com page on "Rock and Roll Nightmare"". SpinalTapFan.com. August 16, 2010. 
  17. ^ MacInnes, Paul (August 16, 2010). "Spinal Tap to reform for Live Earth". The Guardian (London).