Sound and Vision

Originally Published: September 1988

Alice Cooper's Rocky Horror

"I've always said that there's a perfect marriage between horror and rock music," says singer Alice Cooper who, after four years of laying low, is back again scaring audiences. The project that bought Cooper back is Monster Dog, a film made for video in which he plays an adventuresome rock star transformed into a killer canine/man. "I was at a period where I wasn't really doing anything," says Cooper. "I'd been watching all of those [Dario] Argento splatter movies when they offered me the part. It had an Italian director, so I figured we'd be able to get away with more. It sounded like fun - three months in Madrid, I'd get to turn into a dog, and we'd get to kill eight people," he laughs. Cooper agreed to do Monster Dog as long as it was cast with unknowns. "I love C-movies," he says, "but there's nothing worse than a big budget splatter film."

Cooper was thrilled when offered the chance to do the music for Friday The 13th, Part VI. "I had just signed a new deal with MCA, and they called up wanting someone to write music for the film. I said I'd love to do it," he recalls. "They asked if I wanted to see the film and I said, 'Do I have to? I mean. I know what's going to happen.' " Viewers can also catch Jason running around in Cooper's two recent music videos. "Jason is one of the greatest rock images I've ever seen," says Cooper. "Just think of it - give him a guitar instead of a machete and he's totally heavy metal!"

Disenchanted with the music video scene, Cooper would rather utilize video for dramas such as Monster Dog of his earlier Welcome To My Nightmare. "To me, you were a band first: you played, you did gigs, you were almost a gang. They you recorded, and maybe you did a video." Cooper finds it "sadly amusing" that some bands' success rests solely on their video appeal. "Music videos define too much," he assets. "They're three-minute commercials for your song. It's generally not any artier than that."

Cooper also thinks video is better suited for bringing concerts to home audiences. His band will do that with their current tour. "We're contemplating giving blood bibs to the first 20 rows," he says. "I'd hate to see an entire generation get away without experiencing at least one decapitation."