(Redirected from: Famous Monsters)
orn in New York and taking their name from an old 1932 "B quality" horror/monster movie starring Bela Lugozi, White Zombie was started by Rob Cummings (who took the name Rob Straker on early recordings and later assuming the name of Rob Zombie) founded the act along with female bassist Sean Yseult, to recruit Peter Landau (drums) and Ena Kostabi (guitar). What they started wasan unconventional outfit that got the attention of death metal, Dance and Industrial beat fans alike. They started off by releasing several unconventional Metal EPs, Gods On Voodoo Moons (1985), Pig Heaven (1986; with Ivan DePlume now on drumsand Tim Jeffs taking over from Kostabi), as well as Psycho-Head Blowout (1987) and Soul Crusher (1988), on their own label. The last two would feature the classic White Zombie line-up now complete with Tom Guay on guitar in place of Jeffs, the releases also got them a deal with the 'Caroline' label. John Ricci (ex-Exciter) replaced Guay for Make Them Die Slowly (1989), adding a lead guitar and a more focused approach that shed them of the 'artsy' feel, but their raw power still failed to fully show. Jay Noel Yuenger would soon replace Ricci, who debut on the next effort God Of Thunder EP, (a Kiss cover even duplicating Gene Simmon's costume for the cover).
La Sexorcisto: Devil Music Vol. 1 (1992), now on 'Geffen', was the first huge success they received; even MTV's Beavis And Butthead cartoon got in on it. Its demonic roaring mixed with 'B' movie dialogue sold well, and would and off setting their mold. Philo was then replaced by DePlume but he, in turn, was sacked after the subsequent tour, with John Tempesta (ex-Exodus/ex-Testament) taking his place.
The follow-up opus Astrocreep 2000: Songs Of Love, Destruction, And Other Synthetic Delusions Of The Electric Head (1995) would follow. Like it's predecessor it received plenty of media support and whipped up the charts, reaching 6 in the US and 25 in the UK, its predecessor only making 26 in the US! The follow-up Supersexy Swingin' Sounds (1996) failed the chart topping heights, most likely because it was nothing more than a remix album featuring 'Zombie hits to a dance beat.
To the surprise of the whole world, Rob Zombie would suddenly leave his outfit the next year to go solo. He launched his solo debut Hellbilly Deluxe in 1998, which became no less of a hit. His Rob Zombie line-up of Danny Lohner (a.k.a. Riggs; ex-Nine Inch Nails/ex-Skrew; guitar), Blasko (bass) with Tempesta and himself would continue on for the follow up 1999 release of American Made Music To Strip By. The album got a 38 in the US and that's all, once again featuring dance remixes, 'Zombie hadn't yet figured out that people weren't interested in the sound. The 2001 release, The Sinister Urge came to light with much hype but despite getting a respectable grade it was still less liked over-all by fans and the industry alike who accused it of being contrived. His act has been silent since while he concentrates on his other hobbies involving movies and other side issues.
While Zombie continued on with his life, Ysault resurrected her moonlighting project, Famous Monsters, with Devil Doll (a.k.a. Yseult; guitar), Vampire Girl (Real Name: Katie Campbell; bass) and Frankie Stein (drums) to release Summertime EP (1995), In The Night (1998) and Around The World In 80 Bikinis (1999). She-zilla (Real Name: Carol Cutshall) would then replace Stein on drums shortly after the release of In The Night.