Archive for Bryan Adams

Great Rock Albums of 1985: Bryan Adams- Reckless

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on June 15, 2018 by 80smetalman

Now that Download is now a fantastic memory, I can go back to posting about albums. Of course, Bloodstock will be here before we know it but let’s carry on. Reflecting back to early 1985 when I first heard songs from the “Reckless” album from Bryan Adams, I have to ask myself, “Was I a metal snob back then?” I remember not hating any of the songs from this album but I kind of pushed it to one side because it wasn’t heavy metal. The other possibility could be the fact that I may be mellowing a bit with age and the album is more suitable to my pallet because listening to the album again, I really like it and have to say that it rocks in many places.

“Run to You” was the first single from “Reckless” and my favourite track on the album. It would have been my favourite all time except for the cheesy video of him rolling around in the leaves in the song. Fortunately, I have been able to block that memory out when I listen to it and simply appreciate the guitar riffs. “Heaven is a good power ballad even if it didn’t make my top thirty list. If I had expanded the list to a top 50, it would have been there. I do like the power chords in it and only now starting to appreciate the guitar work of Keith Scott. He also shines on the opener, “One Night Love Affair,”  a very underrated guitarist indeed.

With so many well known singles on “Reckless,” it’s impossible to find a hidden gem. “Somebody” got lots of airplay and it’s a good power rocker. The problem with “Summer of 69” is that it gets played to death even to this day. On its own, it’s a decent song but having been saturated with it over the past thirty-three years, I kind of get put off it.

The closest the album comes to having a hidden gem has to be “Kids Wanna Rock.” I do love how it opens with some cool soloing from Scott and he keeps it up between the verses. There are some good power chords a plenty on here as well. Then there’s his single with Tina Turner, “It’s Only Love.” It too rocks, especially live versions and I have to admit, Bryan and Tina did have a good onstage chemistry. “Ain’t Gonna Cry” closes the album out very well.

Track Listing:

  1. One Night Love Affair
  2. She’s Only Happy When She’s Dancin’
  3. Run to You
  4. Heaven
  5. Somebody
  6. Summer of 69
  7. Kids Wanna Rock
  8. It’s Only Love
  9. Long Gone
  10. Ain’t Gonna Cry

Bryan Adams

Bryan Adams- lead vocals, guitar, piano, harmonica, hand claps and foot stomping

Keith Scott- lead guitar, backing vocals

Jim Vallance- percussion

Dave Taylor- bass

Pat Steward- drums, backing vocals

Tommy Mandel- keyboards

Jody Perpick- backing vocals

Tina Turner- accompanying vocal on “It’s Only Love”

Mickey Curry- drums

Steve Smith- drums on “Heaven”

So was I narrow minded or am I mellowing with age? Then again, does it really matter because I really enjoy Bryan Adams’ “Reckless” album.

Nest post: Metal For Breakfast

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Download 2018- The Sunday

Posted in 1980s, Concerts, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 12, 2018 by 80smetalman

I’m surprised nobody pulled me up on my little error about the next post. Here I am saying I’m going to post about a Bryan Adams album when I’m going to the Download Festival on Sunday. Well, I went and returned and am ready to share all my experiences of this historical day with all of you. Before I do, I’d like to mention something that happened as I was walking into the festival. I happened to ask one of the security staff if there had been any fatalities or drunken brawls. The security person stated, “No, that doesn’t happen at Download, it’s a friendly festival.” That makes my point which some of you mentioned in my post about the backlash. Everyone thinks awful things happen at metal concerts when indeed, it’s the non-metal festivals these things happen at. Anyway, enough of that, here’s Sunday Download.

First band up on the day was British hard rock band, Inglorious. They would have been my choice for band whom I never heard of who really impressed me had I not listened to them on Youtube mix. I was really impressed with what I had heard on Youtube and therefore had high hopes for them when they hit the stage. I wasn’t disappointed, they won me over straight away. Lead singer  Nathan James really connected with the crowd and has a great range with his voice. I loved it when he got the crowd to chant “Fuck Gene Simmons” before the second song. I don’t know what issue the band has with Gene but it must make an interesting story. The guitar work of Swedish born Andreas Eriksson was also very impressive. When they left the stage after a half hour of great hard rock, my thought was that if Inglorious don’t make it to the summit of the rock and roll mountain, then there is no justice in the world. I urge all of you to have a listen to them.

Inglorious open the day

Drew Lowe, Colin Parkinson and Phil Beaver make a great rhythm section

Nathan James singing his heart out to the crowd

While I heard of the second band on the day, Cradle of Filth, I must I never really listened to them. My most noted experience is their excellent rendition of the Twisted Sister classic, “The Fire Still Burns” on the “Twisted Forever” album. I have also heard several versions of how they were booed off the stage at Bloodstock in 2009. The reason for that, I’ve been told, was that the Bloodstock crowd considered them too popular for Bloodstock although alternative reasons had been put forward. Therefore, I had no impressions or expectations of them beforehand.

They hit the Download stage in full frenzy. They had the hunger that many support bands I have seen over the years possess. It seems they were out to assault the ear drums from the first moment and they succeeded. I also liked their make up, it did remind me of something out of a zombie B-movie but it worked well. While I can’t say that I’ve been converted to the Cradle cause and intend to buy their entire discography, I won’t, I did think they were pretty good and kept things going quite well.

Cradle of Filth- out to frighten young children

I thought this was a good shot of them

Guitars and bass do that 80s rocking back and forth close together thing.

Inglorious wasn’t the only band I listened to on Youtube in the days before Download. I also listened to some Hatebreed. They didn’t impress me as much as the first band did so they weren’t on my ‘must see’ list. After Cradle of Filth, I decided to take a walk and ended up heading over to the Avalanche Stage. It was here that I discovered the band I truly had never heard of before but really impressed me, Puppy. They’re a three piece band with the guitarist taking on the vocal responsibilities. His vocals are good and he has a good on stage rapport with the bassist but really impressed me was their power. While not thrash, they could collectively hit the right power chords and they really did impress me. Furthermore, they must have impressed a lot more people because at the end of their set, the guitarist remarked that he didn’t expect that many people there to see them. I think that’s a sign of things to come for this band. One I urge you to check out as well.

Puppy- Sorry, this was the best shot I could get of the band under all of those lights.

Puppy proved a good warm up to one of the bands I was dying to see. After eating an overpriced burger and watching the first bout of the NXT Wrestling, I headed over to the Zippo Stage to see the band I’ve been wanting to see for 32 years, Kreator. I managed to get almost to the front so I was in a great position to see them when they came out. Kreator hit the stage running at about 250 mph with “Phantom Antichrist” and didn’t look back. They might have only been on stage 30 minutes but they didn’t stop from start to finish treating the audience to “Hail to the Hordes,” Hordes of Chaos,” which Mille referred to the crowd as and “Suicide Terrorist” and ended with my all time favourite “Pleasure to Kill.” Two things surprised me on what I saw. One was that most of the shredding was done by Sami Yli Sirnio. Don’t get me wrong, Sami can smoke the six string but I’ve always thought that Mille Petrozza was just as capable. Saying that, it worked for them. The other thing was that Mille does know how to work a crowd and get them participating, he’s a much better front man than I expected. Like I said, the band gave their all because when they left, Mille looked like he needed to use a different underarm deodorant and drummer Ventor was drenched in sweat. Thirty-two years and it was well worth the wait.

Mille leads Kreator onto the stage

Mille supports while Sami shreds.

Still buzzing by Kreator’s performance, I returned to the main stage in time to catch the final couple of songs of In This Moment. Lead by lead singer Maria Brink, the band backed up what looked to be an interesting theatrical stage show. Because I got there at the end, I couldn’t get what the story was about but it looked like a woman who looked like Maria was acting like Maria’s slave while she sang but while it would have been interesting to see the entire show, I don’t regret giving it up for Kreator.

In This Moment performing their theatrics.

Rejoining my stepson Teal who had remained at the main stage, he did say that In This Moment’s show was quite good and he thought Hatebreed were pretty good as well and they paid tribute to Kreator. That was cool but we both awaited the appearance of Black Veil Brides. These were on my “I have to check out” list so I made it a point to see them. I wanted to see if they were really Motley Crue for the twenty-teens. They weren’t they were better and I must say that I was very impressed with their often melodic, sometimes power metal. Of course, they played the song they’re known best for, “Fallen Angels” and I sang the chorus along with everyone else in the crowd. “Faithless” was played very brilliantly too and I found myself harmonizing the “Whoa-oh” along with the crowd. When they left the stage, they had definitely made a believer out of me and Teal because he wasn’t too keen to see them at first, he said he didn’t regret it after.

Black Veil Brides make their appearance

Bassist Ashley Purdy comes to my side of the stage

Andy , Jinx and Jake in action

Andy comes our way.

Guitarists rocking out on centre stage.

Shinedown was another band I had only heard on Youtube just a few days before Download and as a result, which was also down to my not wanting to lose my place for Marilyn and Ozzy, I remained in place to see them. A wise decision this turned out to be. Shinedown were another band I had no familiarity with but really impressed me on the day. I’m probably way out of the ball park on this but they reminded me of classic 1970s hard rock. Their hour on stage went by too fast, playing a combination of old material and some from their latest album. Brent Smith is a good vocalist and showman as any of them and the band behind him played very well. I was quite impressed when bassist Eric Bass (no that’s not a pun) played acoustic guitar. For some reason, it’s what I remember most about them, probably because the song played to it was good.

Shinedown begin

Playing in the smoke

A good shot of Eric Bass

As the evening progressed, the excitement mounted for the top two acts on the card. Marilyn Manson came out first, stating that he hates the daylight but that couldn’t be helped. He had the crowd eating out of his hand from the outset and all the things I heard about his kick ass live shows were true. I was personally pleased when he performed my personal favourite of his, “This is the New Hit” but the day had been going like that. He sang many other of his best hits as well and what surprised me a little was that while he performed his version of 80s synth pop song, “Sweet Dreams,” he didn’t do “Tainted Love,” not that it bothered me. He did have several background and costume changes as well. Starting with the upside down black and white flag with the crosses, then a picture of himself and following that, the upside down cathedral. His final costume choice was bold because it was a large frilly black coat and it was still quite hot outside. While his show was top rate, I was a little disappointed about the end because he exited the stage without any thank you or acknowledgement of the crowd.

Marilyn commands the stage

Manson comes to the centre of the stage but too many hands got in the way.

Cool lights and Marilyn’s guitarist and drummer

Marilyn singing without a shirt on

I used the large screen to get this shot of him.

Finally, the main event: Ozzy Osbourne came to the stage. Before he came out, however, he called out from backstage, “I can’t fucking hear you!” two times before he came out and only when the audience was good and loud. Once he did, it was Ozzy mayhem from beginning to end. While he wasn’t doing acrobatics on stage, he still moved around fairly well for someone approaching 70. It was no surprise he began the show with “Bark at the Moon,” he did that when I saw him 32 years earlier. It was the second song that got me going, probably my all time Ozzy favourite, “Mr Crowley.” If that wasn’t enough of a surprise, instead of “Iron Man” he sang my all time favourite Black Sabbath song, “War Pigs.” So, you can imagine my euphoria after that. It was after that classic that Zak Wylde dazzled with his guitar skills. The funny thing was that during his solo, he started playing the opening riffs to “Perry Mason” and I thought that would be the next song. Unfortunately not, but it wasn’t a disappointment. Instead, Tommy Clufetos went into a massive drum solo, thus further wowing the crowd. When Ozzy returned, there were more of the classics, “Road to Nowhere,” “Dreamer” and I was a little surprised when he played “Shot in the Dark,” It was overdubbed with keyboards but it still sounded okay. In all cases, he got the crowd fully involved and there was plenty of shouting and hand waving along to his songs to be had. When he left the first time, no one was surprised to see him come back quickly and when he did, he treated the crowd to “Mama I’m Coming Home” and of course, “Paranoid.” However, when he left for good after all the good byes and fanfare, I realized his show was twenty minutes shorter than what it was billed for. Yes, he could have done a few more classics, but he went out on a major high.

Ozzy’s stage

Ozzy’s kick ass show

I regret that there’s only two photos of Ozzy’s piece of history. That was because my memory card was full. Nevertheless, he ended what was a glorious Sunday at Download.

I did take videos of Kreator and Ozzy but stupid WordPress won’t let me upload them here. They won’t even let me paste a link to it on Facebook.

Next post: Bryan Adams- Reckless

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Great Metal Albums of 1984: Krokus- The Blitz

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 4, 2018 by 80smetalman

Sometimes when an artist comes out with a great song, people expect them to duplicate it every time. This was the case with Swiss metal band Krokus in 1984. A year earlier, they completely blew me and many other metalheads away with their classic song, “Screaming in the Night.” That is definitely in my top 20 as all time favourite songs. However, in 1984, when Krokus released their album, “The Blitz,” many expected another song with the blow away potential as “Screaming in the Night.” Unfortunately, no such song exists on the album and as a result, a lot of people went off Krokus.

Despite the fact that there is no song that completely blows me away on “The Blitz,” I still enjoy listening to the album. There are still some very good songs on here. I’ll be the first to admit that the first single, “Midnight Maniac,” does not compare to the all time great but it has a catchy chorus which I still find myself singing now and again. I have been singing more lately as I have gotten reacquainted with the album. I only wish the guitar solo was a little longer.

Good 80s style metal continues on after “Midnight Maniac” with “Out of Control” and my vote for hidden gem on the album, “Boys Night Out.” This is a great hard rocking song, so much so that I can’t believe that it was co-written with Bryan Adams! The guitar solo on it is longer, at least the appropriate length a decent guitar solo should be. Things continue on nicely after that. “Our Love” has a cool intro and I think that Marc Storace does his best singing on it. It helps that there is a good metal rhythm behind him on the song. “Out to Lunch” is another hidden gem on the album, a good rocker. It’s chorus is just as catchy as “Midnight Maniac” and has a better guitar solo.

The one low point is their cover of The Sweet’s classic, “Ballroom Blitz.” I’m not impressed with it and that could be down to the fact that I saw Krokus live before listening to the album. From what I remember, they nailed it on that night and the recorded version isn’t up to it. Fortunately, three great rockers come after to erase any lack of impression I have on account of “Ballroom Blitz” and so, the album ends on a good high. In fact, “Rock the Nation” is a rather good song that has some cool guitar playing. I can say the same for “Hot Stuff” and “Ready to Rock” is a more credible closer. I do like the live feeling the song has.

Track Listing:

  1. Midnight Maniac
  2. Out of Control
  3. Boys Night Out
  4. Our Love
  5. Out to Lunch
  6. Ballroom Blitz
  7. Rock the Nation
  8. Hot Stuff
  9. Ready to Rock

Krokus

Marc Storace- lead vocals

Fernando Von Arb- guitar, backing vocals

Marc Kohler- bass

Jeff Klaven- drums, percussion

Note: On the tour for “The Blitz,” Marc Kohler would move to guitar and the bass duties would be taken over by Andy Tanas.

Before I close out on what a misunderstandingly good album “The Blitz” is, let me share a bit from “Rock and Roll Children.” When Krokus played live in the story, Marc Storace accepts a joint from someone in the crowd and takes a sly puff on it before handing it back. That actually happened! I know because I was in the fifth row. Anyway, this is an album that deserves a listen or a second chance as it’s better than what some thought at the time.

Next post: Sammy Hagar- VOA

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Great Metal Albums of 1984: Ted Nugent- Penetrator

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 29, 2017 by 80smetalman

Guess what? For this Ted Nugent post, I’m not going to say anything about his politics. Even I know when to stop beating a dead horse. So instead, I’ll focus on his 1984 album, “Penetrator,” which was universally criticized by the metal world for his use of keyboards on the album. To my shame, even I was one of those critics. Thankfully, there’s a much older and questionably wiser me to listen to the album with a more objective mind. My thoughts: “Penetrator” still doesn’t make me want to put albums like “Cat Scratch Fever,” “Weekend Warriors” and “Scream Dream” nor any of his kick ass live albums on the scrap heap but it’s still a pretty good album.

The use of keyboards come through straight away on the opening song, “Tied Up In Love” but not until after a really cool guitar intro only which Terrible Ted can do. Before, I risk repeating myself over and over, the keyboards do make their presence known on many of the songs but they play a subordinate role on the album. Take the second song for example, “(Where Do You) Draw the Line.” This song was written by Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance so one might be forgiven for thinking this was going to be some keyboard dominated soft rock song, it’s not. Ted’s guitar magic comes through very loud and abundantly clear. While still present, the keyboards take even more of a back seat on “Knocking at Your Door.” There are some good guitar riffs to lead the song and Ted nails the guitar solo perfectly. Even more so on the track after “Don’t You Want My Love.” Here the keys are almost non existent. Almost, but there are plenty of Nugent style rocking to be heard on it.

A curious twist comes up with “Go Down Fighting.” This is a song title that you would expect to be a belt it out of the park rocker but the keyboards make their presence known on it, almost making it a Journey type song. The strange thing is that the intro reminds me of Savatage, yeah really. Fortunately, Ted works his guitar magic so you know which side of the fence the song really is. Any doubts of that are dispelled with “Thunder Thighs.” This is a great rocker where Ted just takes control and jams and I hear not one trace of keyboards. It’s just Ted being how he always had been in albums past. However, I sometimes am reluctant to declare it my favourite song on the album because of the sexist connotations behind the title. “No Man’s Land” is just as heavy, if not more than it’s predecessor. Where you think there might be a keyboard at the chorus, there isn’t. After a couple of decent but non descriptive tracks is the closer “Take Me Home.” Again, maybe it’s me but this sounds like a Southern Rock anthem. Not something I’d expect from Ted Nugent but it’s the best song for the closer.

Looking at the credits and remembering recent posts, it turns out that Bobby Chouinard’s drum skills were in great demand in 1984. He played on some of the tracks of both Gary Moore albums I recently posted about and he plays on this entire album. It leads me to conclude that his skills have been forgotten about in later years and this is a travesty because, he’s that good.

Track Listing:

  1. Tied Up In Love
  2. (Where Do You) Draw the Line
  3. Knockin’ At Your Door
  4. Don’t You Want My Love
  5. Go Down Fighting
  6. Thunder Thighs
  7. No Man’s Land
  8. Blame it On the Night
  9. Lean Mean R&R Machine
  10. Take Me Home

Ted Nugent

Ted Nugent_ guitars, lead vocals

Brian Howe- lead vocals

Alan St John- keyboards- vocals

Doug Lubahn-bass

Bobby Chouinard- drums

Two interesting notes regarding Ted Nugent, the first coming from this post. Two years on, I would see Ted Nugent live with Savatage in support. It was a great concert even if it was poorly attended. The other was after my last Ted Nugent post, I put him down on the Bloodstock wishlist. The only comment I got back was someone saying they would love for him to play Bloodstock but he has only come to the UK four times since 1988. Anyway, back to “Penetrator.” This album was far better than I remembered it back in 1984, keyboards or not.

Next post: Great White

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1983- Triumphs and Tragedies

Posted in 1980s, Concerts, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 27, 2016 by 80smetalman
The Alamo

The Alamo

The only tragedy I remember from 1983 actually happened the year before. Due to my military service, I didn’t find out about it until 83 when I read about all the fallout from it. I’m talking about when Ozzy Osbourne pissed on the Alamo. He claims he was drunk as a skunk, (I’ve never seen a drunk skunk so I have nothing to compare it to.) Ozzy also said he didn’t know it was such a national shrine, well it is in Texas. The result of his action got him banned from the city of San Antonio for ten years, although that was lifted a few years later when he made a large donation to the Alamo charity.

Ozzy Osbourne

Ozzy Osbourne

Ozzy was already getting himself a reputation outside the heavy metal world for the wrong reasons. His infamous biting the head off a bat was making its rounds. Of course, the religious element in America embellished things further. There were rumours he blew up goats on stage and at one show, he supposedly threw a puppy into the crowd and said he wouldn’t sing anymore until the audience killed the puppy. While this was all untrue hype, it didn’t help Ozzy when he actually did something for real. So for Ozzy and somewhat in the metal world, this was a bit of a tragedy because it overshadowed the two albums he released in the year. I’ll be covering those soon enough.

Now for the triumphs. It seems that 1983 was a cool year for festivals. I got to go to two of them. The first one, I mentioned when I posted about the Nantucket and Doc Holliday albums a few months ago. Those two bands topped the bill at the Mayfair Festival at Jacksonville, North Carolina. The other five bands remain pretty much unheard of with the bottom three being cover bands. So, I thought I’d include them in this little piece of history. They were Skeet Kelly, Roxy, Avalanche- who did a great cover of Sammy Hagar’s “Heavy Metal,” Peer Pressure- who did a reasonably decent cover of John Cougar’s “Hurt So Good” and Eraxle- who closed their set with a fantastic cover of Van Halen’s “Ice Cream Man.” I consumed loads of alcohol and there were some interesting events between the bands like a wet t-shirt and a men’s ugly legs competition. A fine day from what I remember.

Nantucket

Nantucket

Military commitments kept me from attending this festival but my sister went. I tried to pick her brains but she didn’t remember much. In the June, Journey headlined in Philadelphia and with them were John Cougar, Sammy Hagar, The Tubes and Bryan Adams. From what she can remember, my sister says that Journey sounded great and had a fantastic light show. John Cougar and Bryan Adams were both very good as was Sammy Hagar despite his red spandex. Unfortunately, The Tubes weren’t up to the rest of those who played that day. If this line up played in more cities than Philly, I would love to hear your account of the day.

Journey Live

Journey Live

It didn’t matter that I was in the military for this one, I couldn’t have gone to the US Festival because it was 3000 miles away in California. The US Festival was a three day festival where the first day consisted of new wave bands, the second day’s line up was heavy metal and the third day’s was a rock line up. From what I heard, all three days were fantastic although I do recall an interview with a local sheriff saying that he was going to try to ban such events following the festival. I didn’t think about it then, but that was the first salvo fired at music in the 1980s. I think the best thing to do is just to let you look at the line up for the three days and I’m sure you will be just as awestruck as I was.

Us Festival Showbill

Us Festival Showbill

I did get to the final festival in 1983. This was my first Donington Festival as I happened to be in England at the time. From my memory, I can recall that Diamond Head were all right and Dio were very good. I didn’t twig on who the lead singer was until they played “Heaven and Hell” but that was okay. They were brilliant. Then came Twisted Sister. I can still remember Dee Snider’s quip: “We’re not Culture Club or any of those gay boys or Duran Duran nor any of those other wimps. We’re Twisted Sister and we play heavy metal rock and roll!” Of course I knew there must of been something about them when they were introduced as Twisted Fuckin’ Sister. Their music was great too.

For me, ZZ Top took the concert. They played a magnificent combination of old and new material during their time on stage. Of course it helped that they played my two favourite ZZ Top tunes, “Jesus Just Left Chicago” and “La Grange.” They also played quite a few songs off their new “Eliminator” album so they basically rocked. The big let down after ZZ Top was Meatloaf. I was not impressed, he just sounded terrible that day. Worse, my friend’s English girlfriend didn’t realize that they ran a special train after the concert so out of fear of getting stuck, we left early and missed headliners, Whitesnake. I remain gutted but overall, Donington 1983 was a kick ass day and proved that Great Britain could rock.

donfest83

 

That was 1983 in a nutshell. The only real tragedy was Ozzy pissing on a national shrine but all the great concert festivals more than compensated for it. Just posting about it has me psyched for Bloodstock in two weeks. It was no wonder I was super excited when I got out of the marines that year.

Next post: Great Soundtracks

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Great Rock Albums of 1983: John Cougar Mellencamp- Uh Huh

Posted in 1980s, Humour, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 17, 2016 by 80smetalman

John_Cougar_Mellencamp-Uh-Huh_(album_cover)

One type of person whom most other people in the world find annoying is the guy who acts all tough but clearly isn’t. This was a major problem for John Cougar Mellencamp back in the early 1980s, especially in the eyes of many metalheads. My sister saw him live in 1983 along with Journey (who headlined,) Sammy Hagar, The Tubes and Bryan Adams. Anyway, while Cougar was on stage, ( he hadn’t reclaimed is family name yet), someone threw something onto the stage. In response, John called out, “Hey mother f*cker, throw some shit up here again and I’ll come down and stomp on your ass.” While this was amusing, I remember one friend who said that he would have thrown something else at the stage so he could kick John Cougar’s ass because Cougar was a wimp.

JCM’s 1983 album “Uh Huh” established him as a true American rock act and many of my British friends agree. My thoughts on the album was while it wasn’t a metal album, it was still hard enough for metalheads to enjoy. I have always enjoyed “Uh Huh,” even the singles, which are the first three songs on the album. “Crumblin’ Down,” “Pink Houses” and “The Authority Song” were all good tunes that stretched across the barriers that were being erected in music back then. They had a commercial appeal and a hard rock enough sound that no one who liked those songs would be accused of leaving their chosen camp. Of the three, “The Authority Song” is my favourite because it highlights perfectly the phase I was going through at the time. It was kind of and I stress kind of my theme song for a brief period.

After the three singles, there is still plenty of straightforward American rock and roll to be had. “Play Guitar” and “Lovin’ Mother Fo Ya” definitely qualify but the best song of all on the album has to be “Serious Business.” The lyrics alone make the song for me. I mean how could one not like lyrics that go :

“This is serious business, sex and violence and rock and roll.”

Hell, I’m singing those lyrics now as I type this. This is why I found “Uh Huh” to be such and enjoyable album. John Cougar Mellencamp has a bit of fun on it.

Track Listing:

  1. Crumblin’ Down
  2. Pink Houses
  3. The Authority Song
  4. Warmer Place to Sleep
  5. Jackie O
  6. Play Guitar
  7. Serious Business
  8. Lovin’ Mother Fo Ya
  9. Golden Gates
John Cougar Mellencamp

John Cougar Mellencamp

John Cougar Mellencamp- vocals

Larry Crane- guitar

Kenny Aronoff- drums, percussion

Toby Myers- bass

Mike Wanchic- guitar, backing vocals

Louis Johnson- bass

Carol Sue Hill- vocals

Maggie Ryder- vocals

Jay Ferguson- vocals

When I was teaching full time, I did an American theme in a cookery lesson which the class was making sloppy joes and corn dogs. One of my British colleagues remarked at this, “Sloppy Joes and corn dogs, it sounds like a John Mellencamp song.” Yes, many people outside the US regard John Cougar Mellencamp as truly and American artist, especially with some of the topics he sings about in later albums. That was before “Uh Huh,” where while there are some hidden themes, it’s still a fun rocker of an album.

Next post: Dave Edmunds- Information

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 1983: Bonnie Tyler- Faster Than the Speed of Night

Posted in 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2016 by 80smetalman

Bonnie_Tyler_-_Faster_than_the_Speed_of_Night

When I first heard the big single, “Total Eclipse of the Heart” from Bonnie Tyler back in 1983, I thought it was okay. Nothing spectacular, just okay. On some occasions, back then when I was in a bar where a top 40 covers band was playing or just had the same on the juke box, it was a welcome break from all the Michael Jackson stuff. In any case, the song wasn’t enough to make me go out and buy her album, “Faster Than the Speed of Night.” Recently, however, someone suggested that I post about it, so being a fair minded person, I gave it a couple of listens and am ready to deliver my verdict.

To be very honest, I don’t think I missed much by not purchasing the album, still if I had, I wouldn’t have beaten myself up over making the same mistake as when I bought the Chris De Burgh album. The album starts out well enough with a decent cover of the CCR classic, “Have You Ever Seen the Rain.” Again, I say it’s a decent cover but it doesn’t make me want to put my CCR albums away and never listen to them again. I do have the title track to the album on a rock compilation CD. It doesn’t stand out from the other songs on that album but it does on Bonnie’s album of the same name. I like it more than her most well known hit, which I’ve already named.

The rest of the album is nothing is nothing spectacular. Like Credence, I still prefer Bryan Adams’s version of “Straight From the Heart.” The one thing I did pick up on and liked is that there are some good guitar sounds on this album. It redeems run of the mill tracks like “Goin’ Through the Motions” and “Tears.” Naturally, I had to look and see who the guitarist was and to my surprise, it was none other than Rick Derringer. That explained it all. It is Rick who manages to save what would have been a lackluster album.

Track Lsting:

  1. Have You Ever Seen the Rain?
  2. Faster Than the Speed of Night
  3. Getting So Excited
  4. Total Eclipse of the Heart
  5. Its a Jungle Out There
  6. Goin’ Through the Motions
  7. Tears
  8. Take Me Back
  9. Straight From the Heart
Bonnie Tyler

Bonnie Tyler

So, there’s my verdict on Bonnie Tyler’s album “Faster Than the Speed of Night.” It’s not the first album I would pick up after listening to Anthrax and Slayer in conjunction in order to give a melodic balance to things. I never rated Bonnie Tyler as a brilliant singer. There are a few of her songs I liked but this album doesn’t convert me into a Tyler fan.

Next post: Quarterflash- Take Another Picture

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