The Great Kat – Beethoven On Speed reissue (1990/2007)

The Great Kat - Beethoven On Speed (1990)

The Great Kat – Beethoven On Speed (1990/2007 reissue, Metal Mind Productions)

  1. Beethoven On Speed
  2. Ultra-Dead
  3. Flight Of The Bumble-Bee
  4. Revenge Mongrel
  5. Funeral March
  6. Kat-Abuse
  7. God!
  8. Made In Japan
  9. Sex & Violins
  10. Beethoven Mosh (5th Symphony)
  11. Gripping Obsession
  12. Paganini’s 24th Caprice
  13. Worshipping Bodies
  14. Guitar Concerto In Blood Minor
  15. Total Tyrant
  16. Bach To The Future: For Geniuses Only!

Produced by: The Great Kat, John Matthias, & Monte Conner

Total Time – 32:39

The Great Kat official website
The Great Kat on MySpace
Metal Mind Productions
Roadrunner Records

Three years after her debut, WORSHIP ME OR DIE!, the Metal goddess, The Great Kat, is back with her vision of bringing Classical Music back to the public eye by bludgeoning them with her guitar! BEETHOVEN ON SPEED is billed as “the LP of the 21st Century”, the ultimate album by the ultimate musical genius of out time. The Great Kat is talented, there is no question about that, her degrees from the Juilliard School in NYC speak volumes of the musician she is (or should be). One has to wonder why, with all the talent and training, Kat has decided to uses Thrash Metal as her forum rather than her natural Classical talents.

The Package:
Metal Mind Productions has a great reissue series going right now, licensing many out of print titles from Roadrunner Records and making them available again to the Metal masses. All reissues in the series are strictly limited edition to 2000 copies, each CD is numbered (mine is #1995). Metal Mind provides a nice full color digipak and booklet (with liner notes) and the CD is fully remastered. Like the first Kat album, there is no bonus material, a small disappointment as I can’t see any bonus tracks making the overall musical content any better.

The Music:
The whole point of the album is so Kat can take the music from her main inspiration, Ludwig Van Beethoven, and re-invent it through the ear-splitting shred of her guitar. I enjoy Beethoven and to hear the Kat’s interpretations of his compositions at least made the album mildly interesting. It’s important to note that The Great Kat tightened up her sound a little, there are some actual basic riffs that sound decent enough. It’s not all frantic, out of control, shredding for the sake of shredding. The good news is that I found a few songs that were actually listenable: ‘Ultra-Dead’, ‘Funeral March’, the acoustic half of ‘Sex & Violins’,and parts of ‘Beethoven’s Mosh (5th Symphony)’.

Bottom Line:
For disciples of The Great Kat, it’s another great package by Metal Mind, the music made available again after a long hiatus being out of print. BEETHOVEN ON SPEED is a marked improvement compared to Kat’s debut, WORSHIP ME OR DIE!. The songs are tighter, sound better musically, and Kat’s shouting vocals are improved. What is obvious is that Kat has talent but it’s possible she is going in the wrong direction. It’s obvious that she can play and arrange Classical Music but it’s a mystery to me why she wouldn’t want to pursue her calling in true Classical form. Pairing Heavy Metal/Hard Rock and Classical influences has been done by some of the best guitarists of the genre: Ritchie Blackmore, Yngwie Malmsteen, Uli Jon Roth…..the difference is that they do it better than The Great Kat.

The Great Kat – Worship Me Or Die reissue (1987/2007)

The Great Kat - Worship Me Or Die (1987)

The Great Kat – Worship Me Or Die (1987/2007 reissue, Metal Mind Productions)

  1. Metal Messiah
  2. Kat Possessed
  3. Death To You
  4. Satan Goes To Church
  5. Worship Me Or Die
  6. Demons
  7. Speed Death
  8. Kill The Mothers
  9. Ashes To Dust
  10. Satan Says
  11. Metal Massacre

Produced by: Kurt Shore & The Great Kat

Total Time – 30:15

The Great Kat official website
The Great Kat on MySpace
Metal Mind Productions
Roadrunner Records

I took notice of The Great Kat when this album was released back in ’87 but I never paid much attention. Here was a virtuoso musician that graduated from the Juilliard School in New York City that decided to incorporate her love of Classical Music with the power and fury of Speed Metal. Right away I knew it had to be a gimmick, from the over the top “metal goddess” image Kat uses, to the pairing of two specifically different styles of music at such an extreme. One look at this album cover and I knew that I wouldn’t like The Great Kat, I thought of her as a speedy rip-off or Lita and Doro. Never bought the album and never heard a note until now…..

The Package:
Metal Mind Productions really has a great reissue series going right now, licensing many out of print titles from Roadrunner Records and making them available again to the Metal masses. All reissues in the series are strictly limited edition to 2000 copies, each CD is numbered (mine is #1863). Metal Mind provides a nice full color digipak and booklet (with liner notes) and the CD is fully remastered. The only complaint is that there is no bonus material but, after hearing the album, it’s not a big deal.

The Music:
There really isn’t much to say, the songs are fast, over the top, and…..bad. What I heard coming out of my stereo sounded more like a really bad demo from a talentless early ’80s Thrash band than a classically trained, and self proclaimed, musical genius. The songwriting is juvenile and Kat’s guitar is very fast but it’s nothing special or amazing, I’ve heard faster shredding, and better songs, from many bands in today’s Black and Death Metal scenes. Add Kat’s wailing shriek that she calls “vocals” to the music and it’s a total disaster. Lucky for me the album clocks in at just over 30 minutes because this was an unbearable listen.

Bottom Line:
If you’re a fan of The Great Kat, you will like the reissue, Metal Mind puts out good product and her music is readily available again. To the uninitiated, the music is shocking because it’s so bad. To think that Roadrunner actually signed The Great Kat to a deal is amazing in itself, I can’t imagine future albums being any better. It’s a good thing to have a gimmick and exploit it for self-promotion, KISS has done it for years, but if the music doesn’t hold up then it’s all a big waste. Listening to this record was 30 minutes of wasted time.