Classic Rock Bottom

There's a few CDs I have that I haven't or hadn't gotten around to listening to yet. Whether they are too "old" or I end up not really having much to say about them, I'm not doing a full on review.

Instead, I'm just putting in a sentence or two about what I thought of them. I'll probably keep updating this thread as I get around to various albums that have been sitting waiting for me to play them.

Joe Bonamassa - Blues of Desperation - While there were a couple of tracks I wasn't all that enamored with, overall this album was another winning blues solo album from Bonamassa.

Boneyard Dog - Bluesbound Train - Another bluesy rock and roll record, this debut album was pretty much kicking my ass each time I listened to it.

U2 - The Joshua Tree 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition - Sadly, while I absolutely love the album itself (it is one of my all-time favorites), the anniversary edition isn't much to write home about. Disc 1 is the original album while Disc 2 is a live concert from the Joshua Tree tour. It's not bad, but there's nothing special about it really.

Inglorious - S/T - I was really kind of hyped up about this album but I think the fact I've already sold it off on eBay might give you a hint about my final reaction to the album. Okay, that might be slightly unfair but after listening to the album four times and I couldn't really pick a single memorable song out of it, there's obviously something of a disconnect.

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Disturbed - The Lost Children

This album spent a long time on my Album Want List, but I never got around to it until I saw it in the 5.99 bargain bin at the local Best Buy.

It's a collection of B-sides recorded by the band, but I have to say there were quite a number of tracks that would've been great additions to the various album sessions they were created in. There's little in the way of sublety here as Disturbed pretty much hits you with a sledghammer assault of fast paced rockers on each of the 16 songs.

Much like any album, there are a few clunkers. The most notable is their cover of the Faith No More song "Midlife Crisis". I never heard the original song but this version is abysmal on its own merits. Their cover of Judas Priest's "Living After Midnight" is far better.

However, songs like "Hell", "This Moment", "Old Friend" and "Run" make up for songs like "A Welcome Burden" and "Leave It Alone" in spades. Oh, and the song "3", which is about the West Memphis 3 trio (look up the story for yourselves) is pretty outstanding as well.

Because the songs come from various periods in the band's history, there is a tendency for the track listing to sound a little hodgepodge, but I found a lot to like here and consider it a worthy addition to Disturbed's discography.

Still like the debut.  The follow up to it is fair as well.  I think, maybe because their style is so identifiable, that they do great covers for the most part.  They certainly don't sound like the band they are covering.  The Genesis cover they did on the third album was really good.  A lot of folks like the Simon and Garfunkel cover they did.  The second one you mention here, Living After Midnight, is certainly cool.  But I can only really take the band in small doses these days.

I listen to an album here and there. I'm not fanatical about them, but when a new album comes out I pick it up.

I've got a couple of CDs to add today but since they are both from the same band I'm just going to put them into one entry.

Whitesnake - Slide It In - Originally released in 1984, this album got a remastered edition back in 2009. For reasons either simply unknown to me or passing understanding, that same 2009 remaster just got a new release on November 10th, 2017.

While this is the first album where the 80's sound that gave David Coverdale a brand new career that focused away from the Deep Purple sound that came on the earliest of the Whitesnake albums, I really never got into this album all that much. I did love the title track but despite owning the album, never fully dug into the rest of the material.

For that I should really hang my head in shame because now that I've finally paid attention to this disc, there is just so much here to love. I'm really having a hard time picking out anything to get in a twist about, but perhaps the biggest complaint should be how this release changes the track order from both the original UK and US releases of the album. All the songs are there but looking up the disc info online shows dramatically different orders for the song.

That said, it may have taken 33 years for me to appreciate the fine bit of work that is the Slide It In album, but I'm there now and enjoying myself immensely.

Whitesnake - Slip Of The Tongue - This new reissue is of the 2009 remaster, but it is the basic 10 tracks of the original album without the bonus tracks that came out when this album got reissued in 2009. The track listing is once again changed up but I still love the music that was on this album. Back in the day, I liked "Fool For Your Loving" and "The Deeper The Love" along with all the other songs on the release, but nowadays I find them merely placeholders to get to the other songs.

While opinions may vary about this album, two of my favorite songs from the band are on this album. I really loved "Now You're Gone" and think that "Sailing Ships" might just be one of the best songs by Whitesnake, period. But the guitar material here, which as everyone surely knows was performed by Steve Vai. This gave it a different, less bluesy feel.

Whether adrenaline fueled rockers like the title track, "Kitten's Got Claws" or "Cheap & Nasty" or more epic type songs like "Judgement Day", the album was another home run for the band. Oh, and I nearly forgot to mention another of the best of the best, "Wings of the Storm" which has a killer vocal delivery from David Coverdale to go along with another furiously paced musical score.

I've been slowly replacing my cassettes for Whitesnake with CDs and at the cost of 8 bucks, these two releases are jam packed with great rock and roll songs that remind me and I'm sure many others of the great rock and metal times of the 1980's.

I've got both of these, but I really wouldn't remember what was on each disc without you mentioning it here. My go to for this band is still 1987.  I kind of wanna buy the anniversary edition that just came out, but haven't been able to pull the trigger thus far.

You should get it.

Did you pick it up?

I picked up the basic reissue of it, yes. I wrote about it on page 1 of this thread.

Cyndi Lauper
She's So Unusual
Portrait Records (1983) / Epic / Legacy (2000)
1983 / 2000 Reissue

I know it might seem weird that I'm writing about this CD given my rock and metal preferences, but in 1983 I was not yet a rock/metal fan and Top 40 Pop radio was the music I listened to. I'd long wanted to put this album in my collection but it wasn't until a local shop started a going out of business sale that I picked this one up on the cheap. And it is the reissued edition from 2000 so there are three bonus live cuts included here. (The Japanese reissue contained a 4th bonus track). There was a 30th anniversary version put out in 2013.

Along with 5 million others, this debut album from Cyndi Lauper captured my imagination. Between the songs and the eye catching videos, this album was a pretty solid example of early 1980's pop music. Of the ten tracks on the original album, five of them were radio hits of varying degree and still quite memorable to this day. In fact, as I started writing this review the song "All Through The Night" started playing on the radio station that we listen to at work. I made sure to stop and listen because it is an eminently enjoyable track.

Co-writing four of the songs, Lauper was pretty involved in the creation of the record and had some great personnel helping her out as well. Eric Bazilian from the Hooters played bass, guitars and saxophone as well as contributing backing vocals. Anton Fig plays drums. Hell, noted photographer Annie Leibovitz took the photos for the album!

What made this album interesting was how the material alternates between contemplative ballads and peppy pre-Girl Power uptempo numbers. I don't know what the critical take is on Lauper's voice on the album, but I enjoyed her singing back when it came out.

On "Money Changes Everything", I found my memory didn't match the reality of the song. I had a different sound in my head about the song. The song flashes back and forth between a deliberate pace and a slightly faster movement in the chorus. I remember the song being faster throughout for some reason. That said, I still like the song a lot.

You can't go wrong with "Girls Just Want To Have Fun". No matter what you take from the song, it is just a bonafide smash in every respect. And how can you not remember the video with pro wrestling manager Captain Lou Albano?
Even though I've been hearing the song for years it wasn't until I read the liner notes for this CD that it dawned on me that "She Bop" is essentially an ode to female masturbation. Totally changes the song for me because I can remember singing along to that song a lot...with absolutely no clue. I was so stupid at 12 years of age! The song was reportedly put on the list of the "Filthy Fifteen" by the PMRC, which makes me like it even more now because I despised that censorship group immensely back in the day.

I am notoriously picky about ballads but for me "Time After Time" is one of the best ballads from the 1980's pop music scene. Whenever I get a chance to hear it, I stop what I'm doing so I can let the song get into my head.

Besides the five hit songs, I've never heard the remaining cuts before now. Her cover of the Prince song "When You Were Mine" was not a hit. Of course, after hearing it, I'm not surprised because it was a little trifle of a song and there's a weird sense of Lauper's vocals being downplayed and/or restrained. It just doesn't work for me. Neither did the 45 second interlude track "He's So Unusual" which is made to sound like an old time record and a really annoying child-like vocal.

The song "Witness" is a decent albeit mostly low key song. "I'll Kiss You" finds Lauper being a bit feistier with the vocal delivery. The same could be said for the album closing "Yeah Yeah" which not only has that lively vocal from Lauper but a real good use of the musical soundtrack to finish on a high note.

The live bonus cuts are for "Money Changes Everything" (which I really liked how it came out), "She Bop" (this version seems a little more driven by a guitar sound at points in the song) and "All Through The Night", which is a pretty straightforward rendition of the song.

She's So Unusual
does end up feeling front loaded as all five of the "hit" songs come in the first six tracks of the running order. But there are a couple of "deep tracks" worth checking out as well. I'm not sure what I would've thought of the album as a whole back when it first came out but it does make for an interesting musical trip back in time now.

My older brother bought this when it came out. It was a weird purchase for him since he was totally invested in Synyrd/Nugent/Clapton and still is really.  But this was a head scratcher for me, at least as far who owned it.  Besides the big hit, Girls Just Want To Have Fun, the album is actually quite good, and maybe that was the most unusual thing of all, at least in my musical world.

The videos were interesting as Lauper commanded your attention.  I've always appreciated uniqueness about an artist so I could never speak bad of her, though I am not a fan of much more than this album.  Still, I absolutely love Money Changes Everything and All Through The Night they have a timelessness about them.  This album deserves a spin for old times sake!

Nice read Tage!

Thanks Scott. 

I'll still be looking for her 2nd album, True Colors, but beyond that, I kind of lost interest in her music as I was in full rock and metal mode by that point.

I can't stand GJWHF or Shebop.  But I totally dig Time After Time!


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