Great Rock Albums of 1982: Pat Benatar- Get Nervous

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 4, 2015 by 80smetalman

Get_nervous

Pat Benatar entered 1982 as the undisputed queen of rock. Yes, I know some regarded Chrissie Hynde as queen but it was Pat who had my full allegiance from 1980. By the end of 1981, she had released three very kick ass rock albums to firmly cement her on the throne and it is evidenced by her 1982 album, “Get Nervous,” she wasn’t going to give up her throne without a fight.

“Get Nervous” was the first Pat Benatar album to incorporate keyboards. However, this did not make her sound any softer or really any more commercial. There was still plenty of hard rock left in her and her band and while I would agree that “Get Nervous” may not have been quite as good as her previous three albums, (“Crimes of Passion” is my favourite) it was still a good album from her.

Keeping in the 1982 tradition, the album opens with the hit single, “Shadows of the Night.” When I first heard the song and saw the video at a bar on Okinawa, I simply thought that this was another cool song from her, I still do. Still new to music video, I thought the World War 2 theme for the video was pretty cool as well. I could hear the keyboards but thought they complimented the song very well. The rest of the album, with one exception, follows one in this way. There are some great rocking tracks on “Get Nervous.” The ones which stick out for me are “The Victim,” “A Little Too Late,”  “I’ll Do It” and “Tell It To Her.” I must also give a shout to “Fight It Out” which reminds me a lot of “Hell is for Children” but is in no way a carbon copy of the classic.

One criticism aimed at Pat Benatar about this album back in the day was that it sounded too much like her previous three and her sound was getting tiring. I never agreed with this theory and that is where I bring in the one exception into evidence. “Anxiety (Get Nervous)” goes to more of a new wave sound but still Pat makes it work. It does throw something different into the mix and while you may not hear power chords or a blistering solo from Giraldo, the song is still enjoyable. It proves that while Pat was willing to bend, she still was not ready to give up her throne.

Track Listing:

1. Shadows of the Night

2. Looking For a Stranger

3. Anxiety (Get Nervous)

4. Fight It Out

5. The Victim

6. A Little Too Late

7. I’ll Do It

8. I Want Out

9. Tell It to Her

10. Silent Partner

Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar

Pat Benatar- lead vocals

Neil Giraldo- guitars, backing vocals

Charlie Giordano- keyboards

Roger Capps- bass, backing vocals

Myron Grombacher- drums

Unfortunately for Pat, in spite of having a great album, her throne as queen of rock would be usurped in 1982. Another queen, purely through her sheer power to rock would come and steal the throne away. Who that is will be revealed in the not too distant future. However, that in no way shadows what a good album “Get Nervous” was.

Next post: Don Henley- I Can’t Stand Still

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

Great Rock Albums of 1982: Hawkwind- Church of Hawkwind

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 30, 2015 by 80smetalman

220px-ChurchOfHawkwind

Hawkwind didn’t come to my attention until 1983 when a friend of mine introduced me to them. While, I never heard of them, I know that they weren’t completely unknown in the US during the 1970s. My friend and many of his college buddies back in the late 1970s listened to them quite a lot. When he introduced me to them,  their 1982 “Church of Hawkwind” album wasn’t my first experience but the rather amusing song, “Reefer Madness.” After that I listened to more of their stuff so at least I could say that when I got to England a few years later and met more people who were big Hawkwind fans, I could at least claim a familiarity with their music.

Part of my familiarity with Hawkwind was this album. “Church of Hawkwind” marked a swing from more hard rock to an electronic, progressive sound. However, their brand of “space rock” never goes away in the slightest. Some way out intros by way of keyboards and synthesizers still make the average Hawkwind fan want to grab their stash and light up. I would have but I have to go to work later today. One song that really stands out is “Nuclear Drive.” I can’t explain the little details as to why but I really like the song. I also found “Some People Never Die” very interesting. The song projects the actual news report of the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald backed up by the spacey music that is the trademark of Hawkwind. It’s definitely a stand out song. “Light Specific Data” is a very classy instrumental. Really, “Church of Hawkwind” reminds me of Pink Floyd but only in the sense that this is an album where you sit back and enjoy while indulging in mind altering substances.

Track Listing:

1. Angel’s Voice

2. Nuclear Drive

3. Star Cannibal

4. The Phenomenon of Luminosity

5. Fall of Earth City

6. The Church

7. Joker At the Gate

8. Some People Never Die

9. Light Specific Data

10. Experiment With Destiny

11. The Last Messiah

12. Looking in the Future

Hawkwind

Hawkwind

Dave Brock- guitar, bass, keyboards, vocals

Huw Lloyd Langton- guitar, vocals

Harvey Bainbridge- bass, keyboards, vocals

Martin Griffin- drums

One thing I discovered about Hawkwind is that their music gives metalheads and hippies a common ground. There is much in their music for both groups to like. As far as “Church of Hawkwind” goes, this is an album for sitting down and just appreciating.

Next post: Pat Benetar- Get Nervous

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

Great Rock/Metal Albums of 1982: Uriah Heep- Abominog

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 26, 2015 by 80smetalman

Abominog(album)

It’s another shame on me moment here on 80’smetalman. Uriah Heep were a band that I always wanted to check out but never got around to. I can’t even blame it on them being unknown in the US because they weren’t. Back in the late 1970s, when I belonged to one of those RCA record clubs, their albums were always listed for sale. Therefore, the fault totally lies with me.

I knew they were a hard rock band but that’s all I knew about them. The one song of theirs I have on a compilation, “The Wizard” is a brilliant song but I wouldn’t call it heavy metal. It took the 1982 album “Abominog” for me to discover that Uriah Heep should have been listed as one of my “Other Great Metal Influences.” At the very least, they should have gone into the “Honourable Mention” post because this album totally resonates heavy metal. In fact, I will go out on a limb and state that Uriah Heep belongs with Rush and Deep Purple as key players in the creation of progressive metal.

“Abominog” is a totally kick ass progressive metal album. It reminds me of everything I have always loved about heavy metal. There are some fantastic guitar riffs, complimentary keyboards, strong vocals and I can’t take anything away from their rhythm section either. Furthermore, I hear traces of bands like Dio, Autograph, Whitesnake, for sure in the track “Prisoner” and Hammerfall and I think there have been many a lesser known metal band who learned a trick or two from Uriah Heep who have been doing it since the early 1970s. So, I think I can say that many a band can trace their influences back to this band.

Track Listing:

1. Too Scared to Run

2. Chasing Shadows

3. On the Rebound

4. Hot Night in a Cold Town

5. Running All Night (With the Lion)

6. That’s the Way It Is

7. Prisoner

8. Persuasion

9. Sell Your Soul

10. Think It Over

Uriah Heep

Uriah Heep

Peter Goalby- lead vocals

Mick Box- guitar, vocals

John Sinclair- keyboards, vocals

Bob Daisley- bass, vocals

Lee Kerslake- drums

It has already come to my attention that Uriah Heep’s 70s material is even better than what’s on this album. I don’t doubt this but I am looking forward to my journey of discovery of a great band which almost passed me by.

Next post: Hawkwind- Church of Hawkwind

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

 

Great Rock Albums of 1982: Steve Miller Band- Abracadabra

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2015 by 80smetalman

220px-AbracadabraSM

Unfortunately for the Steve Miller Band, they were another artist, like Billy Joel, I had written off as selling out in the early 1980s. They were another band I was quite into in the late 1970s only to go off them in the early 80s. After some reflection, I have come to the conclusion as to why I accused both Billy Joel and the Steve Miller Band of selling out. By late 1982, mainstream popular music and I were heading into totally opposite directions. While music was going into more new wave synth pop, my musical tastes were growing more and more harder and while I didn’t realise it at the time, I was well on my way to becoming a metalhead.

Whatever the reason, however, the best known song and title cut from the Steve Miller Band’s 1982 album, “Abracadabra,” is not one of the songs that first come to mind when I think of this band. This is in spite of the fact that when I went to the Driftwood in 1982 and I went there a lot in the four months I was in the US, there was a dancer, (not Twinkles, she had stopped dancing there in Autumn of 81), who knew how to work the stage to that song. Fortunately, as I know all too well, one song does not an album make.

The Driftwood (I still can't believe I found a picture of it online)

The Driftwood (I still can’t believe I found a picture of it online)

The best sticker I can assign to “Abracadabra” is soft rock or mellow out rock or melodic rock, probably a combination of all the above. The album has its good moments. While it was softer than what my musical tastes would allow at the time, at least it’s done with guitars and no synthesizers. You  can hear this in each and every song. “Give It Up” gets my vote for number one song and I have to give an honourable mention to “Never Say No,” “Cool Magic” and the closer “While I’m Waiting.” When I listened to the album again after so many years, I realised that it still possessed the quality musicianship I had come to appreciate about the Steve Miller Band back in the late 70s. I just didn’t appreciate it back in 1982.

Track Listing:

1. Keeps Me Wondering Why

2. Abracadabra

3. Something Special

4. Give It Up

5. Never Say No

6. Things I Told You

7. Young Girl’s Heart

8. Goodbye Love

9. Cool Magic

10. While I’m Waiting

Steve Miller Band

Steve Miller Band

    The Steve Miller Band has always appealed to my more mellower side and I must give credit to where credit is due, the “Abracadabra” album is as good as some of their others although “Fly Like an Eagle” remains my favourite. I realise now that my mind was so focused on hard rock that the album didn’t tickle my fancy back in 1982. Times change and though I still focus on the hard stuff, I can take time and appreciate some of the more melodic offerings like this album.

Next post: Uriah Heep- Abominog

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

Great Rock Albums of 1982: Status Quo- 1+9+8+2

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2015 by 80smetalman

220px-1982_StatusQuo

Status Quo are yet another British rock band who never quite cracked America. I first heard of them during the short time I was in the UK when I was in the service and then hardly ever heard their name until my arrival in 1986. However, as many of my new British friends were metalheads, they were quick to shoot the band down stating they were too commercial to be metal. It didn’t help their case when I heard their two best known songs, “Whatever You Want” and “Rocking All Over the World.” To me, those songs gave me the impression of what the Bay City Rollers would have sounded like if they tried to play heavy metal. So, I wasn’t very impressed. However, quite recently a good metal friend stated that if you look beyond their singles and listen to their albums, they are more rock. It is that advice, that I listened to the “1+9+8+2″ album and am posting about it now.

Let me declare from the start that in my view, Status Quo are not heavy metal. They are more melodic rock bordering on hard rock. The “1+9+8+2″ album does have some moments of good hard rock but some of their songs are also templates of their two biggest hits. A perfect example is the opening track, “She Don’t Fool Me,” which opens with a very promising hard rock intro before venturing back to more traditional Quo ground. The next few tracks sound like templates of those two songs but credit where due, “Jealousy” does have a good guitar solo. The album does seem to go progressively harder after that. “I Love Rock and Roll” (not to be confused with a big hit from another band from this year) is a decent rocker. But the first track to really rock the way I want it to is “I Want the World To Know.” That is their most rocking track but the closer, “Big Man” is also a good rocker to take the album out on.

Track Listing:

1. She Don’t Fool Me

2. Young Pretender

3. Get Out and Walk

4. Jealousy

5. I Love Rock and Roll

6. Resurrection

7. Dear John

8. Doesn’t Matter

9. I Want the World to Know

10. I Should Have Known

11. Big Man

Status Quo

Status Quo

Francis Rossi- vocals, lead guitar

Rick Parfitt- vocals, guitar

Alan Lancaster- bass, vocals

Andy Brown- keyboards, backing vocals

Pete Kircher- drums, backing vocals

The question now is “Are Status Quo the British Nickelback?” I have heard people say that you have to look beyond the songs you here on radio to fully appreciate that Canadian band. The answer is yes but on a lesser scale. The songs on “1+9+8+2″ are better than the two hits they’re best known for. However, while the album does have it’s rocking moments, there are also moments where they sound like their commercial hits.

Next post: Steve Miller Band- Abracadabra

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

1982: Triumphs and Tragedy

Posted in 1980s, Concerts, Death, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Humour, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 12, 2015 by 80smetalman

You may remember that when I first entered 1982, I spent eight of the twelve months of that year deployed with the marines. The first six months were especially difficult because I was floating about the Mediterranean Sea and Indian Ocean on a ship. So I didn’t get that much news especially news pertaining to music. However, one piece of tragic news that did reach my ears whilst on the ship was the death of comic actor and Blues Brothers singer John Belushi.

Bluesbrothersmovieposter

Unlike the assassination of JFK, Belushi’s death may not have been a where were you moment when you first learned about it to most people. While I can say for sure that I was on board the ship when I learned about his tragic passing, I can’t say where exactly the ship was at the time. I do know that it was somewhere in the Indian Ocean.

His career may have been short but John Belushi packed a load of things to remember him by during those few years. For us music fans, the biggest contribution to music was most certainly The Blues Brothers. His collaboration with Dan Ackroyd  gave us a brilliant album and in 1980, a hilarious movie with one hell of a great soundtrack. For those new to 80smetalman, I have visited both on here if you want to take a look. Older statesmen like me, however, will always love Belushi for his antics on the old Saturday Night Live show. I will always love his Samurai character. In 1982, a true musical and comical genius was tragically taken from us. R.I.P. John Belushi.

John Belushi as Samurai in my all time favourite one: Samurai Night Fever

John Belushi as Samurai in my all time favourite one: Samurai Night Fever

Now on to the triumph. This year saw the third Monsters of Rock Festival at Donnington Park. Attendance was up from the previous two years and evidence that slowly but surely, heavy metal was taking over the UK. A small piece of festival history was made that year when Saxon became the first band to play at there for the second time. Headlining was another British band who failed to make it very far in the US, Status Quo. I have to admit, that I haven’t listened to them much over the years over the years. Guess I should rectify that. Other players that year included Gillan, Uriah Heep, space rockers Hawkwind and Canadian metal band Anvil. While it would be another year before I would hear about this great festival, I believe that this varied line up would have been a great thing to see and hear.

HW 1982-08-21 Castle Donnington.Monsters of Rock.1.front

Like I said at the beginning, my knowledge of musical events is limited due to the circumstances. So if there is some other event from 1982, triumph or tragedy, let me know and I will post about it because it is part of our history. Call this an urgent appeal.

Next post: Status Quo- 1+9+8+2

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

Great Rock Albums of 1982: Bruce Springsteen- Nebraska

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 9, 2015 by 80smetalman

Bruce_Springsteen_-_Nebraska

Now that I am mellowing with age a little, I found that listening to albums now that I didn’t think much of when I listened to them when they first came out but I am now appreciating them a bit more. Having grown up in New Jersey, I was hoping that when I listened to Bruce Springsteen’s “Nebraska” again, that I would feel the same way. Unfortunately, I don’t.

With “Nebraska,” Bruce plays all of the instruments himself and he goes for a more folk sound on it. In fact, quite a few country artists, including the late Johnny Cash, have covered songs from “Nebraska.” That’s another reason why I should be more into this album because it was during my military days which were mainly based in North Carolina and that gave me more of an appreciation for country music. Sadly to say, that even that doesn’t make me appreciate “Nebraska” any more. The only songs which I can really say I like are “Johnny 99″ and “Used Cars.” Even the single “Atlantic City” doesn’t get me excited despite it being about the city I grew up near. The song sounds just as depressing as the actual city has become today. I went to Atlantic City back when I went back to the States last Autumn and the place is depressing. With three major casinos now closed, I have to agree with my friend’s assessment that Atlantic City has become the new Detroit minus the murders.

Track Listing:

1. Nebraska

2. Atlantic City

3. Mansion on the Hill

4. Johnny 99

5. Highway Patrolman

6. State Trooper

7. Used Cars

8. Open All Night

9. My Father’s House

10. Reason to Believe

Bruce Springsteen

Bruce Springsteen

Bruce Springsteen- all instruments and vocals

One argument that came out at the time of “Nebraska” and I totally reject to this day is the one that Bruce Springsteen is nothing without the E Street Band. No, what Bruce did was to go into the studio and make an album by himself. While hearing “Nebraska” makes me want to go and play one of his other albums, he does still show that he is a talented artist and continues to be. Two years after this album, he would go out and make history but that’s a story for another time.

Next post: 1982 Triumphs and Tragedy

To buy Rock And Roll Children, go to http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/RockAndRollChildren.html

Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London

 

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