As a music lover of hard rock I gotta give some long overdue credit to Tesla and after 230 posts here at Arena Rock it’s about time I drop a studio review on these cats!
For a added bonus check out my very good Blog Pal Mike Ladanos spin on Tesla’s very first album Mechanical Resonance! Click here Peeps….
From Sacramento California comes Jeff Keith,Frank Hannon Troy Luccketta,Brian Wheat and the guy with the coolest name in rock which no one can pronounce Mr Tommy Skeoch!
Mechanical Resonance comes out in 1986 and they hit the ground running with Modern Day Cowboy as the leadoff single and holy hell these guys are fuggin ugly but man they take there craft serious and all the cool rock action is stuffed into the 4 minutes of Modern Day Cowboy! Cool groove cool drums,cool production,good lead and backing vocals,real good dual lead guitar players(take a bow Frank and Tommy) plus they just dressed like normal dudes,t shirts,jeans and you didn’t have a hard time figuring out there image! Unlike Poison with the cover of Look What The Cat Dragged In from 1986 as well I mean we’re the Poison guys dude chicks ?? Geezus Murphy!
Anyhoo 1989 and The Great Radio Controversy is released and its stuffed full of a hour of Tesla rock and some day I gotta slam some words down on that great album but today it’s …..back to 1991 and Tesla feeds us Psychotic Supper(yeah that was a pathetic lead in)
CHANGE IN THE WEATHER-Put this in your pipe and smoke it! Hey man that’s the Tesla boys chirping that through the speakers and Hannon and Skeoch play some funky wah and it jams along with a real cool groove! Tesla man could play there instruments and Change In The Weather is just that! A great friggin opening number and we’ll crank the friggin video! Geez sorry for my tone there folks I think I gotta put something in my pipe and smoke it!
EDISONS MEDICINE- some real crazy wild playing at the beginning and man that has to be Skeoch for me this band has not been the same since he split or booted or whatever the problem was with him. This song has a real good verse and Jeff Keith the fucker can sing I mean to me at times he sounds like a dude version of Janis Joplin he can sing when he wants to and he can screech when he needs to! The chorus is real good and thats the others thing with these guys as they could also sing backing vocals real well not just studio but live! Read about it here when I caught the Psychotic Tour back in 1992 live at Mike Ladanos favourite city Duluth Minnesota….https://superdekes.wordpress.com/2014/10/03/5-man-loud-electrical-jam/
DONT DE-ROCK ME-straight Rock track and at the 2 minute spot Troy The Drummer dude smashes down a 30 sec drum solo where he pummels the crap out of his kit! Of course with Tesla there bread and butter are in the axe chops of Skeoch and Hannon and well they do what they do best they guitar dual Til the end of the track! Don’t De Rock ….Don’t De Rock Me ! Got it!
CALL IT WHAT YOU WANT-cool mid tempo tune and Jeff Keith sings some real cool lines on this song! The prechorus,chorus all jive and the boys play some neat Pickin guitar patterns with some good old power chords tossed in for added musical pleasure.
SONG AND EMOTION-Tesla back in 88 opened for Def Leppard on Leps Hysteria tour and thanks to Joe and the boys Tesla were well on there way! Song And Emotion is dedicated to the late great Lep guitarist Steve Clark who passed away early 1991. Song And Emotion is a 8 and half minutes of a solid slow burner that goes all over the musical rock map! Starts,chills,builds up,power riffing,ends chill it’s all here and a great tribute to a fallen comrade!
TIME -has a real 1975 Aeromithy vibe to it especially the way Troy plays them drums! The song just grooves with and oooozes cool especially during the chorus! Skeoch and Hannon groove the guitars and push the song until Keith screeeeeeeeches Time at the end! Great track!
GOVERNMENT PERSONNEL-I love me Acoustic Tesla and this tune applys in our election year here in Canada (October 19th 2015 goooooo vote readers!) This is a short real catchy just under 90 seconds of classic Tesla! Love the barking dog at the beginning of the track and Yep “Give me a home where the deer and Buffalo roam and the deer and the antelope play bet your ass we’ll blow EM all away!” Great track crank it as I posted the vid!
FREEDOM SLAVES-a mode tempoish Tesla driven number featuring Keith during the verses. The dude has a flair for kinda singing kinda talking through the songs and making them sound cool! Freedom Slaves is a great track!
HAD ENOUGH-man this tune has Skeoch all over it! Frazzle Dazzle Speeding Finger Picking Whammy Bar Workout Extravaganza! Had Enough ramps it back up into Tesla Rock Mode!
WHAT YOU GIVE-boom out just like that comes the acoustics! Big sweeping 7 minutes plus of Tesla acoustic rock! Big builder of epic perportions as that’s how many a Tesla tune is built.
STIR IT UP-mid tempo Tesla rock! Hannon and Skeoch one punch this bad boy out as they do on many a Tesla tune. Keith tosses down the vocal while Troy plays the beats….
CANT STOP-Tesla ramps it up and keeps the party Groovin and Shakin with late night snacks and after all the hits are done out comes ……
TOKE ABOUT IT-the album starts with putting it your pipe and smoking it and ends with Toke About It! Ha it’s High Tide and Tesla Grass! (Get it?) This is just a good time end of the album chill out tune! Grab the Doritos and were off …Skeoch and Hannon can play many styles on there 6 strings and they were a great guitar team. Cop a buzz c’mon on down and join the party…..
IN CONCLUSION- Tesla are a great no frills hard rock act and by that I mean they show up,plug in and friggin let it rip! Psychotic Supper continues Tesla’s string of solid studio records. This was there third there next one Bust A Nut is a kicker as well! Tesla is currently still going strong (opening for Def Leppard)and too be honest I haven’t bought any product of theres since they released the live album (Coming Atcha Live)back in 2000 or so…..don’t know why …..