Let me nail my colours to the mast - firstly I've never to my knowledge - listened to a Christian Death record in its entirety so I've got no allegiance to the iconic Rozz Williams or the various outfits that have masqueraded as Christian Death. I have, however, a lot of time for the disturbed genius of David E. Williams; a twisted troubadour who melds a weird lyric to beautiful twisted lounge music.
Accept The Gift Of Sin documents a one-off performance from 1996 when Rozz Williams was backed by David E. Williams, and his talented set of musicians. It's an illuminating repertoire comprising some old Christian Death numbers, and a selection of cover versions performed on keyboards, guitar, saxophone and accordion. The arrangements were specially created by David E. Williams so the death rock of Christian Death is replaced with something classy and sophisticated.
Mixing one part Broadway, with one part a Beer Hall singalong 'Tomorrow Belongs To Me' requires a good sense of black humour even for those familiar with the musical Cabaret. It's followed by the sexual undertones of 'Beautiful Brownshirted Man', a David E. Williams original. The other cover versions are also quite telling including - and I shit you not here - a straightforward retelling of 10CC's 'I'm Not In Love', and a sugar coated 'Dream A Little Dream of Me' which slips into the realms of pure kitsch. The set culminates in 'Mindfuck (Soundtrack To A Murder)' a spoken word / noise track culled from the Christian Death archives.
Strangely enough, even though Williams' versions that evening are no-nonsense cover versions the actual performance deteriorated into farce as the promoters took offence to the flag prop used during 'Tomorrow Belongs To Me'. I guess swastika flags aren't too popular in some places.
I suspect there are a number of posthumous Rozz Williams releases but Accept The Gift Of Sin is an entertaining one-off release that ought to appeal to anyone interested in either of the Williams. Believe me, this is a far more worthy purchase than any number of the tribute compilations currently doing the rounds. www.davidewilliams.comM