Great Rock Albums of 1988: The Bangles- Everything

The Bangles have always been somewhat a paradox for me. They were known for soppy love songs and the track, “Eternal Flame,” is one of their best known. A little story here: I read an account that while on tour for this album, “Everything,” the band was accosted in the Netherlands by a female contingent of the LBGQT brigade because they wore short skirts and sang such love songs. The thing is and the album proves it, The Bangles could produce some cool new wave sounding rock. Take the opening track, “In Your Room,” for instance, it is a trippy new wave sounding song and here’s the big thing, it got into the top ten in the singles charts in several countries! Unfortunately, the song will forever be overshadowed, (not by me), by “Eternal Flame.”

Here’s another interesting point about the Bangles, while Susanna Hoffs sings lead vocals on the majority of the band’s singles, the lead vocals on the album are almost equally shared by all of the band. Bloggers have sung the praises of the likes of KISS and The Eagles for the all members of the band being able to sing lead vocals but surely, the Bangles should be included there as all four members have great voices.

One song which is totally different on the album is “Bell Jar.” Lead guitarist Vicki Peterson sings lead vocals on it and makes it her own. It has a new wave sound which reminds me of my all time favourite Bangles song, “The Hero Takes a Fall” from their first album. Vicki also plays mandolin on the song and it does go way out in some parts. Is it the hidden gem? Well almost, that honour goes to “Watching the Sky” which oddly enough, Vicki sings lead on that. This particular track is the closest they go to a total rock out.

Another track which showcases just how talented this band was is “Something to Believe In.” It is a near haunting ballad with some rather trippy piano work on it. Bassist Michelle Steele sings lead and her vocals bring a different but cool element to the song. “The Glitter Years” rocks pretty good and Vicki plays probably her best guitar solo on it. The closer, “Crash and Burn” is another interesting song and is definitely the song to end the album on a good note.

Track Listing:

  1. In Your Room
  2. Complicated Room
  3. Bell Jar
  4. Something to Believe In
  5. Eternal Flame
  6. Be With You
  7. Glitter Years
  8. I’ll Set You Free
  9. Watching the Sky
  10. Some Dreams Come True
  11. Make a Play for Her Now
  12. Waiting for You
  13. Crash and Burn
The Bangles

Susanna Hoffs- guitar, lead and backing vocals, perucussion

Vicki Peterson- lead guitar, lead and backing vocals, mandolin

Michelle Steele- bass, lead and backing vocals, percussion

Debbie Peterson- drums, percussion, lead and backing vocals

Additional Musicians:

Darryl Citizen- noise

Paulinho Da Costa- percussion

Bobby Donati- guitar on “Some Dreams Come True”

Vinnie Vincent- 12 string guitar on “Make a Play for Her Now”

Tommy Morgan- harmonica

Jim Snodgras- tabla

David Lindley- classical guitar, bouzouki, saz, dobro

John Phillip Shenale- keyboards

Walker Ingleheart- keyboards

David White- keyboards

“Everything” further strengthens my argument about not judging an album by one or a couple of songs. Back in 1988, the Bangles had a reputation for making soppy love songs because of “Eternal Flame,” which if I was to rate the songs from best to worst, would be very close to the bottom. This is a great album of some cool new wave rock and should be listened to as a whole.

Next post: Fairground Attraction- First of a Million Kisses

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com

To sign the petition to give Bruce Dickinson his knighthood, click the link: https://www.change.org/p/special-honours-committees-for-knighthoods-a-knighthood-for-bruce-dickinson

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10 Responses to “Great Rock Albums of 1988: The Bangles- Everything”

  1. I like Eternal Flame – I like their janglier fsster stuff too. But Eternal Flame is a cut above most big 1980s power ballads.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Some good tracks here. My brother-in-law met Susanna a few years ago at a party and said she’s still got it!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Back in their heyday, I wasn’t very big on the Bangles. But now that I’m older, I appreciate their music! And I love the song, “In Your Room.” I was dating my first serious boyfriend when this song was on the air and it reminds me of all the fun times I had back then! The weekends back then were AH-mazing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow, I’m glad I was able to bring back fond memories for you. The problem with the Bangles is that they were more known for their soppy love songs but they were capable of much more.

      Like

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