In This Moment’s Black Widow is the 90s Mainstream Industrial Throwback You’ve Been Waiting For
In This Moment’s Black Widow makes an interesting unofficial companion piece to Avenged Sevenfold’s Hail to the King: whereas the later album satisfied nostalgia for early-90s metal like The Black Album and Use Your Illusion, In This Moment’s fifth album satisfies nostalgia for late-90s metal. More specifically, In This Moment’s Black Widow satisfies nostalgia for late-90s metal that borrowed heavily from Nine Inch Nails: Marilyn Manson, Rob Zombie, Static-X, and even some of the bands in this vein that came after the turn of the century, like Dope and American Head Charge.
And, like Hail to the King, Black Widow is mostly successful: even the band’s most passionate haters won’t be able to argue that songs like “Sick Like Me,” “Big Bad Wolf,” “Dirty Pretty,” and the title track aren’t catchy. And the album’s two ballads, “Sexual Hallucination” (which features guest vocals by Shinedown’s Brent Smith) and the Evanescence-esque “The Fighter,” add breathing room that, frankly, even albums by the bands who so clearly influenced this record could have used.
If Black Widow has a shortcoming, it’s that it seems like almost every song begins with some kind of slow-ish intro, which really detracts from its momentum. I’m fine with the first track, “The Infection,” serving this purpose for the track that immediately follows it, “Sex Metal Barbie,” but at a certain point I just want to rock without having to listen to a moody prologue.
But that issue is fairly minor, and, ultimately, Black Widow is as strong as anything In This Moment have ever made, if not stronger. This is one spider you’ll be happy to let infect you.