There truly is nobody else doing it quite like Creeper right now. Nearly a decade into their career and the band have done it yet again, masterfully crafting an album that not only is sure to excite their cult following of fans, but also feels more ambitious, exciting and somehow even more theatrical than anything they’ve done before – and that’s saying a lot.
With each of their releases, Creeper has introduced listeners to a new version of themselves, first announcing their “breakup” following the tour cycle for Eternity, In Your Arms and most recently with vocalist William Von Ghould getting beheaded on stage. Now reborn and quite possibly better and more fantastically horrifying than ever, the band is back with SANGUIVORE, and it almost feels as if everything has been leading up to this moment. Kicking off with “Further Than Forever,” a nine-minute long epic rock opera that effortlessly immerses you into the storyline of the album, SANGUIVORE is a fantastic concept album that weaves a story of life, death and ultimately, love – something that Creeper fans are well accustomed to at this point.
Telling the story of Mercy, a deceptively innocent yet savagely violent vampire, 19-years-old in conventional terms yet with a soul dating back some thousand years, and her relationship with Spook, an older man who falls under her control but doesn’t quite lose sight of their previous humanity, the album is filled with easter eggs for the fans, references to vampire films and even mentions of Mary Shelly and infamous paranormal investigator Lorraine Warren. It’s both enchanting and fantastical while also serving as a wonderful metaphor for Creeper’s career so far, and their knack for coming back from the dead.
Massive singles “Cry To Heaven” and “Teenage Sacrifice” are definitely high points and soon-to-be live singalongs, but the horrifyingly beautiful “Lovers Led Astray” and high energy “Chapel Gates” are well worth a re-listen to enjoy both the complexities of each song and the witty lyricism. Then there’s the absolutely beautiful closing track, “More Than Death” which harkens back to “I Choose To Live” sonically. Lyrically, the dark love song is easily Ghould’s strongest vocal performance on the album, finding him belting out, “Death fears us, we don’t fear death, don’t you dare ever forget / From our first kiss to our last breath / With any heart that I have left, I will love you more than death.”
Sonically SANGUIVORE takes a step away from some of the brighter tones of Sex, Death & The Infinite Void as well as the emo/goth-inspired rock of Eternity In Your Arms and punk on American Noir for a perfectly executed love note to 80’s rock. With Hannah Greenwood’s keys and vocals taking more of a center stage, Ghould channeling Meat Loaf’s theatrics alongside massive, timeless guitars, the album is one that will easily withstand the test of time. It something that both feels like it could have been written forty years ago, but makes perfect sense in this chapter of Creeper’s career and will certainly leave fans wondering just what they’ll accomplish next.