Dokken was a band that had a chance for the golden ticket to complete stardom but because of the constant bickering between lead singer Don Dokken and guitarist George Lynch Dokken the band imploded after 4 studio albums …Breaking The Chains(1983),Tooth & Nail(1984),Under Lock And Key(1985)and Back For The Attack(1987)…
I think I read somewhere years ago that Dokken was due to release one more album to fullfil there 5 album contract so with Dokken in chaos they headed to Tokyo cut a double live album (Beast From The East)put it out in November 1988 and shortly after broke up due to internal bickering….
These guys should have chilled for a bit and bounced back instead they shut down and though there were various solo albums from the band guys they reconvened in 1995 for the great Dysfunctional album (Long Way Home is a awesome track!)but were never able to gain there previous 80s momentum.
Hey that happens when your a bunch of bitches towards each other!
I reviewed Tooth And Nail a while back and a lot of people recalled that album very fondly so I thought what the hell let’s check out what at the time would be the live Dokken Swan Song….
Kudos to Dokken they could have never put out a live album in 1988 but instead of gone with a Greatest Hits album to finish off there record deal which would have made me puke!
Don Dokken(vocals) George Lynch(guitar) Jeff Pilson(bass) and Mick Brown(drums) give us a double double live album …
Where’s The Hunter?
UNCHAIN THE NIGHT-some prerecorded parts of the Intro to Unchain The Night are pumped through the speakers and before you know it were all Rokken with Dokken and Unchain The Night is Dokken playing a mid tempo rock track straight ahead no frills just enough ooomph to be the opening number! Don Dokkens voice I always liked especially with this kind of Dokken Rock! George Lynch plays a slick fast gunslinger guitar most of the time but when duty calls he could relax and slow down the shred albeit for the song whereas many guys from his era over shredded to the point of making me feel nauseated! Hello Yngwie J! Pilson on bass (and some great backing vocals throughout this album) and Wild Mick on the drums pound the bottom end to the ground and were all aboard the Dokken tour bus! Pass the Hairspray!
TOOTH AND NAIL-now Lynch ramps up and spits out furious riffage and huffing and puffing on the double bass drums is Mick smashes,crashes cymbals and Don hollers ‘how long will it take? To break the spell….straight to the top Tooth And Nail!” Dig the solo by Lynch man especially at the end as the bass and drums stop for a few seconds and Lynch nails smoke on up and down the fretboard and Mick assaults his snare and were back up to super snuff speed! Impressive that they passed on this as the opener and instead blow our senses out on track 2! Well played sneakey L.A. Rock Guys!
STANDING IN THE SHADOWS-Lynch kimda meets Ed Van Halen opening before this song takes off and Lynch once again steals the show on this tune! Standing In The Shadows is one of the better tracks from Back For The Attack and I dig the live version as I found sometimes some off these 80s albums when I listen to them now they have like 100 guitars on tracks and at the time I guess it was called for but now ..aaaargh! The good thing is Pilson is pretty simple yet effective on the bass as he holds it together while Lynch does his guitar hero stuff on this album.
SLEEPNESS NIGHTS-whoah another good slow driver of a tune from Back For The Attack. Has a pretty slick groove with a real good chorus. Whoever put this setlist together for these shows had a pretty good idea what young DeKEs liked back in 88! Sleepless Nights is a great track! No frills just good Rock! We know the deal like Don Sez your giving it Til 6 am and it’s another Sleepness Night coming your way! Isn’t there some drugs out there to make you sleep or keep you awake? Hahaha….just sayin!
KISS OF DEATH-is a rip roar of a tune! This is a fast paced tempo tune. Lynch is Unleashed In The East(Ha!) here and he plays a gazillion notes but it makes sense. This is like 87 Whitesnake on steroids! The word on the street back than is Don wrote this song about AIDS! Yeah no shit Don was dropping down some serious lyrics here almost a Hard Rock Bono with a message! But at least Don doesn’t ram the message down everyones throat! Lynch goes bonkers during the solo while Brown and Pilson keep the tour bus on the road!(do not I mean do not spill the party treats that are ready for consumption on the table!) You want loud rock! Fast guitar,soaring vocals..it’s here!
WHEN HEAVEN COMES DOWN-I think when I reviewed the studio version of this on the Tooth And Nail album I called it Sludgey Pudgey(not sure if i said I’m too lazy to look it up) Live here it sounds better obviously with a better tempo and It kicks …kicks in a way that Vince Neil needs to be kicked when singing live and kicked in the other way of Bret Michaels needs just a plain hard swift kick in the ass period! Lynch plays once again the in the confines of the song! Hot diggity doggity I think I’m more psyched by Lynch on this live recording than anything! Ha! Serious! The chorus here is big and tough sounding like after a shot of Jack Daniels and a tussle of Hairspray sprayed around for good measure!
INTO THE FIRE-of course as a Dokken fan you know this one right? The pace of the live version is sped up and DOKKEN here craft perfect Rock Single 101! By that it’s a cooling opening of drums,bass and Lynch’ power chords. Don tosses down a good vocal along with some good backing vocals courtesy of Pilson and were Into The Fire which segues right into …..
MR SCARY-and were off with a 3 minute or so Lynch guitar solo,riffing like a lunatic but with him I’m ok with it like i said compared to some other 80s guys! (Hello CC Deville) Lynch can play no doubt and next thing you know Pilson and Brown slam out a barrage of LA Metal Chops as these guys could play but like any band from the time they get lumped in as just another act. I think what hurt Dokken was they made some goofy videos like Burning Like A Flame. Remember that one with the Dokken guys riding around in a fire truck! Haha….WTF!! Silly cheese ..not a bad song but what a Dumbo video! But yeah Mr Scary ends side 2 and I wonder what Don was doing during this time of the musical only portion of the show?? Ahhhhh that’s right he was on the horn with the record company trying to negotiate a better record deal for himself at the time while his soldiers are In the trenches on stage doing the real work…..
Check Back Friday when I yammer on about sides 3&4 of Beast From The East….