W.A.S.P. (album)

W.A.S.P. is the debut album by the American heavy metal band W.A.S.P., released August 17, 1984. The album has been known under three different names; the spine of the original European vinyl release had Winged Assassins printed on it, while early cassette releases of the album had the name of the album's first track, "I Wanna Be Somebody", printed in bold letters on the cover. The album is officially entitled simply W.A.S.P., which it is typically referred to as.

Studio album by
ReleasedAugust 17, 1984
RecordedJune–July 1984
StudioRecord Plant, Los Angeles, California
ProducerBlackie Lawless, Mike Varney
W.A.S.P. chronology
The Last Command
Singles from W.A.S.P.
  1. "L.O.V.E. Machine"
    Released: 1984
  2. "I Wanna Be Somebody"
    Released: August 1984
  3. "Sleeping (In the Fire)"
    Released: 1984 (promo)
  4. "School Daze"
    Released: November 1984
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3/5 stars[2]
Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal5/10[3]
Metal Crypt4.25/5 stars[4]
Rock Hard9.0/10[5]


Prior to its original release, the controversial track "Animal (Fuck Like a Beast)" was deleted from the album. The Parents Music Resource Center had labeled the song as one of its "Filthy 15", songs that the group determined to be morally objectionable. Capitol Records subsequently bowed to pressure and pulled the song. The band released it as a single in the UK in 1984 on the indie label Music for Nations, and the single subsequently became a highly sought after item in North America as an import. The song was reinstated on the album with the 1998 reissue.

The song "I Wanna Be Somebody", released as the album's second single with accompanying music video, was so popular that VH1 later placed it in their list of the "Top 100 Hard Rock Songs" of all time.[6] "L.O.V.E. Machine" dates back to Lawless' pre-W.A.S.P. band Circus Circus, who frequently played the song live but never recorded it.[7]

Several of the album's songs have been covered by other bands. "Sleeping (In the Fire)" has been covered by Tiamat and Anders Manga, "Hellion" by Children of Bodom and In Aeternum, "L.O.V.E. Machine" by Fallen Man,[8] Lullacry, Fozzy and Alghazanth, "I Wanna Be Somebody" by Sentenced, Catamenia, Witchery, Avulsed and Gates of Ishtar, and "The Torture Never Stops" by the death metal group Torture Division.[9]

The song "Tormentor" was heard in the films The Dungeonmaster (1984) and TerrorVision (1986).

Track listingsEdit

Side one
1."I Wanna Be Somebody" 3:43
2."L.O.V.E. Machine" 3:51
3."The Flame"Lawless, Chris Holmes, J. Marquez3:41
4."B.A.D." 3:56
5."School Daze" 3:35
Side two
6."Hellion" 3:39
7."Sleeping (In the Fire)" 3:55
8."On Your Knees" 3:48
9."Tormentor"Lawless, Holmes4:10
10."The Torture Never Stops" 3:56
1998 CD reissue[10]
1."Animal (Fuck Like a Beast)" 3:07
2."I Wanna Be Somebody" 3:43
3."L.O.V.E. Machine" 3:51
4."The Flame"Lawless, Holmes, Marquez3:41
5."B.A.D." 3:56
6."School Daze" 3:35
7."Hellion" 3:39
8."Sleeping (In the Fire)" 3:55
9."On Your Knees" 3:48
10."Tormentor"Lawless, Holmes4:10
11."The Torture Never Stops" 3:56
12."Show No Mercy" 3:48
13."Paint It Black" (The Rolling Stones Cover)Mick Jagger, Keith Richards3:27


  • Mike Varney – producer
  • Duane Baron – engineer, mixing
  • Stephen M. Fontano – engineer
  • Jim Scott, Hanspeter Huber – assistant engineers
  • David Tarling – pre-production




Country Organization Year Sales
U.S. RIAA 1998 Gold (500,000)[citation needed]
Canada CRIA 1985 Gold (50,000)[17]
Finland Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland 1986 Gold (+ 25,000)[18]


  1. ^ "10 Hair Metal Albums That Don't Suck". Consequence of Sound. February 5, 2018. Retrieved February 25, 2021.
  2. ^ Prato, Greg. "W.A.S.P. - W.A.S.P. review". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved August 31, 2011.
  3. ^ Popoff, Martin (November 1, 2005). The Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal: Volume 2: The Eighties. Burlington, Ontario, Canada: Collector's Guide Publishing. p. 406. ISBN 978-1-894959-31-5.
  4. ^ Arroyo, Hermer. "Classic Review: W.A.S.P. - W.A.S.P." Metal Crypt. Michel Renaud/The Metal Crypt. Retrieved November 29, 2012.
  5. ^ Götz, Kühnemund (1984). "Review Album : W.A.S.P. - I Wanna Be Somebody". Rock Hard (in German). No. 8. Retrieved October 17, 2019.
  6. ^ Vh1 Top 100 Hard Rock Songs Archived January 4, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Circus Circus Live". YouTube. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  8. ^ Fallen Man
  9. ^ Torture Division » Downloadgraphy
  10. ^ W.A.S.P
  11. ^ a b c "Sisältää hitin: Levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1961: W > W.A.S.P." Sisältää hitin / Timo Pennanen. Retrieved October 16, 2019.
  12. ^ "W.A.S.P. – I Wanna Be Somebody (Album)". Swedishcharts.com. Media Control Charts. Retrieved October 16, 2019.
  13. ^ a b c d "W.A.S.P. Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved October 16, 2019.
  14. ^ "Top Albums/CDs - Volume 41, No. 8, October 27, 1984". Library and Archives Canada. October 27, 1984. Retrieved October 17, 2019.
  15. ^ "W.A.S.P. Billboard Albums". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Archived from the original on January 29, 2014. Retrieved October 29, 2012.
  16. ^ "W.A.S.P. – I Wanna Be Somebody (Song)". Charts.org.nz. Media Control Charts. Retrieved October 16, 2019.
  17. ^ "Gold Platinum Database: Search for W.A.S.P." Music Canada. Retrieved October 17, 2019.
  18. ^ "Search for Artist W.A.S.P." (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Archived from the original on August 20, 2014. Retrieved December 11, 2013.