Lizzy Borden – “Master Of Disguise” (1989)

Lizzy BordenAll of a sudden, Lizzy Borden was brimming with ambition on 1989’s Master Of Disguise!  Kudos to Lizzy Borden and the producers/engineers Alex Woltman and Elliot Solomon for bringing Lizzy’s grand vision to life on what was surely a shoestring budget.  (This was, after all, a Metal Blade Records release and not a major label production.)  Master Of Disguise has strings, piano, horns… the whole nine.  The record sounds crisp and full.  Lizzy Borden himself (the name of the lead singer is also the name of the band), does a masterful job on the microphone — great lead vocals and exquisite harmony vocals.  However, as with any Lizzy Borden album, the songs are hit and miss.  Honestly, only a few stand out, but one track in particular rises above all else — the brilliant title track!  The song Master Of Disguise is undoubtedly the best song Lizzy Borden has ever done.  I loved it from the first time I heard it, and I still love it to this day.  Again, those layered vocals and harmonies steal the show.  A masterpiece!  Check it out here.

Master Of Disguise is a very theatrical album, and may even be a loose concept album (I’m not sure).  The underlying theme I seem to be picking up is that of “duplicity”.  That is, people not being as they seem.  I think this is my favorite Lizzy Borden album.  The title track alone justifies my purchase, but I also enjoy Never Too Young and We Got The Power.  The 2007 remaster (Metal Blade Records) includes a DVD, The Making Of Master Of Disguise.  It contains (very shaky) archive video footage from the recording studio.  It is interesting to watch, but because the footage is so shaky I wouldn’t recommend seeing it more than once.  My score: B


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