Rob Zombie (born Robert Bartleh Cummings; January 12, 1965) is an American musician, film director, screenwriter and film producer. He rose to prominence as a founding member of the band White Zombie which formed in the mid-1980s and rose to fame in the early 1990s. As a solo artist, he has released five studio albums, five compilation albums, and a live album. He expanded his career and became a director, and has directed a total of six films, the majority of which he also wrote or co-wrote. He has also released numerous brands of comic books, and appeared as an actor on numerous occasions.
Photo Johnny Leo Johansen(c) Sweden Rock Festival 2014
Zombie’s music has been noted for its use of horror and suspense elements, which is inspired by Zombie’s love of horror films. Zombie’s music also contains elements commonly found in heavy metal and alternative metal music. Zombie’s music has been described as “melding metal with industrial, hypnotic rhythms and haunting sounds” and having a “complicated beat, distinctive vocals and a killer story line”. Zombie’s songs have also been known to feature quotes and samples from classic horror films. Numerous songs on his debut album, Hellbilly Deluxe, feature quotes from films such as The Last House on the Left, The Satanic Rites of Dracula, and Mark of the Devil. It has been stated that Zombie’s music “explore [his] fascination with psychotic noise, pummeling grooves, campy samples, and all things horrific.” Zombie has classified himself as a metal musician, and stated “It felt like hard rock and heavy metal had really been struggling you know, like top of the charts – it felt like they were being kicked to the curb for a long time. It was almost like you were doing something but you feel like nobody cares anymore so now you’re just chuggin’ along doing what you do and it’s like the world had forgotten. However it’s felt like in the last few years that’s kind of changed and you feel it coming back.”
Zombie’s music heavily draws influence from classic horror films and suspense films. He has listed Alice Cooper, KISS, Queen, and Elton John as some of his influences growing up. In addition, he has stated that the first record he bought was an Alice Cooper record. Zombie’s “Never Gonna Stop (The Red Red Kroovy) music video is heavily inspired by A Clockwork Orange. Zombie later revealed to People magazine that while he was growing up, he was not allowed to watch films such as A Clockwork Orange or The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, the latter of which heavily influenced Zombie’s films House of 1000 Corpses and its sequel The Devil’s Rejects. Zombie’s music videos are also inspired by horror films, with his “Living Dead Girl” music video being based upon the 1920 silent horror film The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.