Great Metal Albums of 1985: Keel- The Right to Rock


Looking back, the opening title track of Keel’s second album, “The Right to Rock,” might have been a fore-warning of things to come in 1985. I saw the video for said song in January of said year but the whole thing with the PMRC didn’t happen until the Autumn. It turns out that the video showing life in an oppressed anti-music society was the first of many which came along thanks to the good old PMRC. With all that aside, it’s still a pretty good song to begin with.

While unlike one hit wonders who use their hit song as the opener to the album in order to generate more sales, “The Right to Rock” is still worth listening to long after the single is done. Different albums have different uses and although I never used it for this, it is a good album to have on the car stereo while going to a concert. Thinking back, it would have put me in total party mood while driving up the old Atlantic City Expressway towards Philadelphia to partake of a concert. That’s the best use for this album, it’s loud and manic, just what one needs.

Is it good for listening in general? You might ask. First, I’m going to beat those of you itching to tell me that this Keel album was produced by Gene Simmons. My verdict on Gene was that he produced this album to the best of HIS ability and I will let you all debate the pros and cons of that. He also wrote three of the songs, the first one, “Easier Said Than Done,” could have easily been recorded by KISS. The next track, “So Many Girls, So Little Time,” doesn’t sound like a KISS clone at first listen but the lyrics definitely give away the fact that Gene wrote it. The third Gene penned track, “Get Down” is no less obvious.

History points out that the reason, Keel used three Gene Simmons songs was down to the fact that they had only written three of their own songs when their label ordered them into the studio. It also explains the cover of the Rolling Stones, “Let’s Spend the Night Together.” Additionally, the closer “You’re the Victim, I’m the Crime,” was re-recorded from the band’s first album, which was titled “Tonight You’re Mine” on it. So, the question here was: Were Keel capable of writing decent songs themselves? The title track and track two, “Back to the City,” would indicate in the positive and though not as good, “Speed Demon” is still pretty cool. However, “Electric Love” might have been written by the band but it could have easily been written by Gene.

Track Listing:

  1. The Right to Rock
  2. Back to the City
  3. Let’s Spend the Night Together
  4. Easier Said Than Done
  5. So Many Girls, So Little Time
  6. Electric Love
  7. Speed Demon
  8. Get Down
  9. You’re the Victim (I’m the Crime)


Ron Keel- vocals, guitar

Marc Ferrari- guitar, vocals

Bryan Jay- guitar, vocals

Kenny Chaison- bass, vocals

Steve Riley- drums, vocals

Dwain Miller replaced Steve Riley on drums but did not play on the album.

Whichever way you swing on Gene Simmons’ abilities as a producer, “The Right to Rock” is a pretty good album from Keel, especially if you’re speeding down the highway on your way to a metal concert.

Next post: Girlschool- Running Wild

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5 Responses to “Great Metal Albums of 1985: Keel- The Right to Rock”

  1. I’ve spotted this one a couple of times and was curious about it. A very striking cover.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’m still amazed at how many 80s metal bands there were 😳

    Liked by 2 people

  3. […] Source: Great Metal Albums of 1985: Keel- The Right to Rock | 80smetalman’s Blog […]

    Liked by 1 person

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