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Great Metal Albums of 1987: Dokken- Back for the Attack

Another review nailed by 80’s Metalman here. I have to agree that this is the worst of the classic four Dokken albums, although there are some good moments. Another thing to consider is the fact that Don and George were at each other’s throats by this point. Kiss of Death and Dream Warriors are the highlights for me.

80smetalman's Blog

Have you listened to an album recently and found it was much better than when you listened to it years earlier? I recently had that experience with Accept’s “Russian Roulette” album and I was hoping the same thing was going to happen when I listened to Dokken’s 1987 album, “Back for the Attack.” I didn’t hate the album when I first heard it in 1987 but I thought the album lacked punch. The problem is that after hearing it three times recently, my view hasn’t shifted.

“Back for the Attack” sums up what happens to many bands. They are hungry on their first few albums and that hunger is reflected in the music and the way the band plays it. This was definitely true on the first three Dokken albums. They were hungry and it certainly shows and I could see that hunger for myself when I saw them support…

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ANDY SNEAP “Disappointed,” Reveals He Didn’t Choose To Leave JUDAS PRIEST — Metal Injection

“Rob called me last Monday and said they wanted to move on as a four-piece.” The post ANDY SNEAP “Disappointed,” Reveals He Didn’t Choose To Leave JUDAS PRIEST appeared first on Metal Injection.

ANDY SNEAP “Disappointed,” Reveals He Didn’t Choose To Leave JUDAS PRIEST — Metal Injection

Metal Monday 1-10-2022:

Welcome to a new weekly post that I will call Metal Mondays, where I will rank the albums of a certain artist in the metal and hard rock genre from worst to best.  As I am a list and ranking person, I am unable to have a simple discussion on what a band’s good albums are, as well as their not-so-good ones.  I must rank them in some sort of order, or I will not be able to participate!  This also makes for a fun debate, don’t you think?

NOTE:  I will rank full length STUDIO ALBUMS only.  There will be no live records, greatest hits, or EP’s here.

Today, we focus on the lengthy and successful career of the Scorpions.  This German quintet has been around for more than 50 years!  Starting out with a late-60’s hippie, psychedelic sound, the Scorps have progressed into a hard-driving hard rock outfit, and even had a few missteps along the way, including a misguided foray into regular pop.

Make no mistake about it, the Scorpions made their dough on the backs of the twin guitar attack of Rudolf Schenker and Matthias Jabs, with assists from legendary axemen Michael Schenker and Uli Jon Roth, both of whom preceded Jabs.  Original vocalist Klaus Meine is easily recognizable for his long wails and shrieks, traits that have not slowed down with age.  As this ranking will display, for my money, the period with the classic lineup of Meine, Rudolf Schenker, Jabs, along with bassist Francis Buchholz and drummer Herman Rarebell, churned out the best Scorpions records, although a few of the later releases work their way into the upper half of the catalogue. 

#18:

Eye II Eye 1999

It seems like every band has an album that alienates its fanbase (see Metallica’s St. Anger and Megadeth’s Trust).  Eye II Eye is the Scorpions’ bugaboo.  And this comes with plenty of merit.  The record displayed the furthest abandonment from its classic sound in its entire collection.

Best Song:  10 Light Years Away

Best Deep Cut:  10 Light Years Away

#17:

Lonesome Crow-1972

The very first release from the band found a band trying to find its collective way.  A melodic, yet dark effort that ventured into the psychedelic sound of the late sixties, it is also the only album with Michael Schenker until 1979’s Lovedrive

Best Song:  I’m Goin’ Mad

Best Deep Cut:  I’m Goin’ Mad

#16: 

Pure Instict-1996

Here is an album that I find it difficult to write anything for.  It’s not a terrible record, however, there really isn’t anything memorable here, either.

Best Song:  Wild Child

Best Deep Cut:  Wild Child

#15:

Face the Heat-1993

The wheels were starting to fall off some, here.  Longtime bassist Francis Buccholz was replaced by Ralph Rieckermann, while drummer Herman Rarebell would depart after the tour for this record.  In addition, grunge was spelling doom for just about any band that had achieved success in the 80’s.  Alien Nation and Under the Same Sun were the singles, but I really like the ballad, Lonely Nights.

Best Song:  Alien Nation

Best Deep Cut:  Lonely Nights

#14:

In Trance-1975

The longer psychedelic songs of the first two records were replaced with harder and more concise material.  The title cut, Dark Lady, and Robot Man are the highlights.

Best Song:  Robot Man

Best Deep Cut:  Robot Man

#13:

Return to Forever-2015

This is the latest Scorpions release, although a new record (Rock Believer) is due next month.  All in all, this is a fun collection of songs that is impressive for a group this long in the tooth.

Best Song:  Gypsy Life

Best Deep Cut:  Gypsy Life

#12:

Savage Amusement-1988

Sandwiched between classics, Love at First Sting and Crazy World, Savage Amusement is the lone outlier in a string of magnificent albums, which also include Taken by Force, Lovedrive, Animal Magnetism, and BlackoutRhythm of Love is the big single, and although it is more poppy and less crunchy than previous hits, I must admit my admiration for it.  Overall, the record is more synth-driven than I would like, and frankly, many of the songs are filler.

Best Song:  Rhythm of Love

Best Deep Cut:  We Let It Rock…You Let It Roll

#11:

Virgin Killer-1976

This record got most of its publicity from the controversial original cover.  It was another step toward the hard rock sound that the Scorpions would later perfect.  Perhaps no classic rock band’s progression has been as deliberate this one, but perhaps good things come to those who wait.  Check out the title track, Pictured Life, Backstage Queen, and Yellow Raven

Best Song:  Backstage Queen

Best Deep Cut:  Backstage Queen

#10: 

Humanity Hour I-2007

A concept album, this one is based on a storyline by Desmond Child and Liam Carl that deals with humans and robots engaging in a horrific civil war.  The record gets off to a solid start with Hour I, The Game of Life, and We Were Born to Fly321 is the album’s finest track, while Humanity closes the collection in fine order.  Unfortunately, there are plenty of skippable numbers in this offering, as well. 

Best Song:  321

Best Deep Cut:  321

#9:

Fly to the Rainbow-1974

The first Scorps release with Uli Jon Roth on guitar, Fly to the Rainbow represents an example of the slow, but apparent progression toward the sound it would come to be known for.  That said, the band had not yet dropped its trippy sound, altogether.  Speedy’s Coming and the title track bookend a very underrated album.

Best Song:  Speedy’s Coming

Best Deep Cut:  Speedy’s Coming

#8:

Unbreakable-2004

This record represents a return to rock and roll form for the band, following its disastrous venture into pop.  New Generation, Love ‘em or Leave ‘em, Blood Too Hot, and Someday is Now are the standouts.

Best Song:  Love ‘em or Leave ‘em

Best Deep Cut:   Love ‘em or Leave ‘em

#7:

Sting in the Tail-2010

By 2010, the Scorpions understood their identity, and it resulted in Sting in the Tail, its latest in a string of solid albums, following Unbreakable and Humanity Hour IRaised on Rock, The Good Die Young, Let’s Rock, and the title track are meat on the bone.

Best Song:  Sting in the Tail

Best Deep Cut:  The Good Die Young

#6:

Animal Magnetism-1980

This one often gets overlooked and a little disrespected, most likely because of the records that follow it.  However, do not sleep on Animal Magnetism, which feature two of my favorite Scorpions tunes, Make it Real and The Zoo.  Meanwhile, Lady Starlight and the title cut are worthy of listens, as well.

Best Song:  The Zoo

Best Deep Cut:  Lady Starlight

#5:

Taken by Force-1977

The final album featuring Uli Jon Roth, and the one that introduces drummer Herman Rarebell, Taken by Force is the final record released before the band started to get noticed in America, and is a fine album, indeed.  Steamrock Fever, We’ll Burn the Sky, The Sails of Charon, and He’s a Woman-She’s a Man are the standouts.

Best Song:  Steamrock Fever

Best Deep Cut:  Steamrock Fever

#4:

Lovedrive-1979

The fact that this is only the fourth ranked Scorpions album speaks volumes for the strength of what is ahead of it.  Lovedrive is the first release to feature guitarist Matthias Jab and solidified the lineup that would take the band through its glory days.  The highlights are many, from opener Loving You Sunday Morning, to Another Piece of Meat, Holiday, and the title track.  Meanwhile, the record’s finest hour is the instrumental, Coast to Coast.

Best Song:  Coast to Coast

Best Deep Cut:  Loving You Sunday Morning (although released as a single, I still believe it is overlooked)

#3: 

Crazy World-1990

This will always be the album known for the band’s biggest hit, Wind of Change, and for good reason.  Although overplayed by classic rock radio, it is a brilliant track.  Singles Tease Me Please Me, Don’t Believe Her, and Send Me an Angel further solidify the record, while deep cuts Lust or Love, To Be with You in Heaven, Restless Nights, and Hit Between the Eyes round out a fantastic release.

Best Song:  Wind of Change

Best Deep Cut:  Lust or Love

#2:

Blackout-1982

The band was gaining serious traction by this point.  Blackout starts with the rambunctious title track and is hardly finished.  Can’t Live Without You and No One Like You round out a powerful opening trifecta, while Dynamite, China White, and When the Smoke is Going Down highlight a strong, but overlooked second half.

Best Song:  Blackout

Best Deep Cut:  Dynamite

#1:

Love at First Sting-1984

The soundtrack to my junior high school years.  I still listen to this record fondly, as it brings me back to the days of denim jackets and high-top sneakers.  Megahits Rock You Like a Hurricane, Big City Nights, and the amazing ballad, Still Loving You highlight the album.  That said, the smash singles hardly make up the strength of the release.  Bad Boys Running Wild, I’m Leaving You, and Coming Home could easily have been career defining hits for lesser bands.  In addition, being a drummer, I remember the dirty looks I used to get from teachers for pounding the beat to Crossfire on my desk.  In reality, there is no chance Love at First Sting isn’t the number one album on this list.

Best Song:  Still Loving You

Best Deep Cut:  I’m Leaving You

Great Metal Albums of 1987: Def Leppard- Hysteria

Here is 80’s Metalman bringing me back to the glory days again. Gods of War is a great tune and I consider Excitable to be a hidden gem, as well. Cheers!

80smetalman's Blog

The challenge for me writing about Def Leppard’s 1987 “Hysteria” album is what I can I say or write about it which hasn’t been said before? I mean this album spawned seven singles, went platinum in many countries and gold in a few more as well as going to number one in the charts. Furthermore, the album was finally recorded four years after their previous sensational album, “Pyromania,” in which the band had to overcome the tragic accident which cost drummer Rick Allen his arm and Steve Clark’s battle with alcohol. There was also the problem with producers. Mutt Lange started producing but walked out and Jim Steinman didn’t last. The band tried to produce it themselves but Mutt came back and helped the band make history. So, in many ways, this album was a remarkable triumph for the band.

As soon as I heard the opening riffs to “Women,”…

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VIDEO: Christmas 2021 Village Tour – Judas Priest – 50 Heavy Metal Years of Music Unboxing

Priest!

mikeladano.com

Enjoy a tour of the best Christmas Village I’ve seen yet — complete with carnage and baby Yoda. Or, skip ahead to watch the unboxing at 3:43!

Yes — it has arrived. Judas Priest’s 50 Heavy Metal Years of Music. 42 CDs of music. Limited to 3000 copies. And in 2022 we will be reviewing this monstrosity front to back.


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Metal Monday 1-3-2022

Archived Concert Review

Kiss Alive Worldwide Tour

Worcester Centrum

Worcester Massachusetts

December 28, 1996

I remember 1996 very well.  The depressing grunge scene (although my older self can appreciate some of the artistry) was winding down.  While a return to my beloved 1980’s would never completely come back, the overall musical direction was at least heading toward something resembling a little fun again.  And then the unbelievable happened.  Kiss, the band that singlehandedly led me to become a hard rock and heavy metal fanboy, was reuniting with its original members, complete with its trademark make-up! 

The idea of seeing Kiss in the way seventies rock fans were able, was nothing short of a miracle.  I recalled all the stories regarding their legendary, and almost mythical characters.  The bombastic stage shows, the blood spitting, the breathing of fire.  I remembered the inside of my Alive II album, first seen as a seven-year-old.  I had to score tickets.  There was no way I could miss this show.

The Centrum was packed that night.  I managed to get tickets in the upper level, stage right.  Way to the right.  As in the side of the stage, looking down on raised platform.  Getting into my spot after the opening set of regional band, The 4th Floor (which had to be an amazing experience for them), I had to wait, almost painfully, for my heroes to emerge, knowing our section would get a glimpse long before most in the arena.  A large black curtain with the band logo dropped from the ceiling at a strategic point in The Who classic, Won’t Get Fooled Again, which was playing over the P.A.  The crowd was getting restless.

Finally, the lights went down.  A loud humming noise filled our ears.  Spotlights rotated around the stage.  The roar of the audience was deafening.  Then they came out!  Again, our section at side stage could see them first, in all their costumed glory.  They took their places, vocalist/guitarist Paul Stanley bucking like a raging bull about to be released into the ring.  The announcer shouted those words all to familiar to us longtime Kiss fans from the glory days.  “All right, Worcester!  You wanted the best; you got the best!  The hottest band in the world……. Kiss!”

The curtain dropped and the band launched into, Duece, the first song that lead guitarist Ace Frehley played when he auditioned for the group more than 20 years prior.  A gigantic pyrotechnic blast accompanied the song, and the band was off to the races!  This tour was featuring mostly seventies classics recorded by the original members; therefore, it was not a surprise, but still amazing to witness, Kiss segueing into C’mon and Love Me, Let Me Go Rock ‘n’ Roll, and Firehouse in rapid succession. 

The conclusion of Firehouse brought about Gene Simmons’ fire breathing stunt, much cooler in person than inside a wrinkled Circus magazine.  I couldn’t believe what I was watching!  A couple of songs later, the Frehley-sung, Shock Me, culminated with his blistering solo, complete with his smoking guitar being raised to the rafters.  Calling Dr. Love, Shout it Out Loud, I Stole Your Love, and Cold Gin highlighted the midsection of the show, with an overabundance of lights, lasers, and fire to accompany them.

Paul Stanley, never one to shy away from lauding his own band and absorbing all the accolades he can muster, hadn’t yet tired fans with his sometimes meandering between-song raps, never straying far from the arena rock cliches that mostly worked to supplement Kiss’ many over-the top-gimmicks.  This included the trademark blood spitting trick that Simmons perfected back in the day, complemented by the Dragon being raised to the top of a lighting truss to sing, God of Thunder.  Drummer Peter Criss, not wanting to be left out of the spotlight, performed a steady, if unspectacular solo mid-song, displaying just enough chops to satisfy us drummers in the crowd.

100,000 Years and Detroit Rock City closed out the main set, each with enough pyro blasts to surely make the local fire warden a little nervous, before returning with classics, Black Diamond, Beth, and the fiery Rock and Roll All Nite.  The night was complete.  There was no more that could be done.  Paul Stanley had asked the audience, “Was it all that you expected?”  I had to agree with the overwhelming consensus.  Yes!

Kiss Set List:

Duece

C’mon and Love Me

Let Me Go, Rock ‘n’ Roll

Do You Love Me

Firehouse (Gene breathes fire)

Watchin’ You

Shock Me

Ace Frehley Guitar Solo

Calling Dr. Love

Shout It Out Loud

I Stole Your Love

Cold Gin

King of the Night Time World

New York Groove (Russ Ballard Cover)

Love Gun

Gene Simmons Bass Solo (spits blood)

God of Thunder (Peter Criss Drum Solo)

100,000 Years

Detroit Rock City

Encore:

Black Diamond

Beth

Rock and Roll All Nite

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