Posted by: tdennis2011 | June 1, 2014

Shocking Moments #97: W.A.S.P.’s Torture Rack


W.A.S.P. is legendary to shock rock fans because of their horrific onstage antics and concepts, and the band proved that on its first tour when they debuted the infamous torture rack.

The set played out like this: halfway through the song, “Tormentor”, lead singer, Blackie Lawless, would open two large doors revealing a half naked woman with a black hood over her head tied to a wooden rack. Lawless would then pretend to slit her throat, whip her, or make her do some sort of sexual act. At the end of the song, the doors were shut and the rack wouldn’t appear until the next tour stop. The rack was retired after the first tours, but reappeared in 1987 at the Monsters of Rock show.

The “rack girl” was played by 5 different women over the years. At least one of them was a female groupie and runaway who was reportedly very uncomfortable about the act. She has since become a Christian. (Not surprised, considering what she went through.)

Not surprisingly, the rack, plus other stuff, got W.A.S.P. in a heap of trouble with parent groups and censors. If anything it solidified the band’s reputation as legends of shock rock and provided one of the most shocking stage spectacles in music history.


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