1985 brought a whole bunch more rock records that I took notice and spent the dough on.
Here We Go!
On the Can-Con front, both Lee Aaron and Helix released albums. Lee Aaron with Call of the Wild and Helix with Long Way To Heaven.
Lee enlisted Bob Ezrin and this was I thought a step up from the Metal Queen album from 1984. Lee had an ace up her sleeve in the form of guitarist John Albani who co-wrote a ton of tracks with Lee throughout the ’80s and into the ’90s. Paradise and Hot To Be Rocked are stellar tracks.
Helix came back with Long Way To Heaven which was a little dip in creativity but still not a bad album. The record’s production is so-so but the title track and Kids Are All Shakin were bonafide winners. Hell, I’m surprised Poison has never covered Ride The Rocket. Helix headlined arenas on this tour in Canada and even scored a Number 1 album in Sweden!
Hey, whaddya say?
Across the pond, U.F.O was on life support as Phil Mogg and Paul Raymond released Misdemeanor which outside the shitty sounding production had some decent tunes like This Time, Heavens Gate, Night Run and Name of Love which were good rock tunes. Atomic Tommy was the guitarist and was pretty decent but the album sounded like it recorded in a tin can. Too bad.
Vivian Campbell calls the last Dio album that he played guitar on “poop”. Sacred Heart back in 85 was a hard album for me to get into. The previous two albums Holy Diver and Last In Line were stellar so it happens at times and as I have said in the past that there were so many records coming out (29 albums I bought in 1984) that if something didn’t grab you right away it may get filed away for decades. This was my deal with this record back in 85. But come 2018 I picked it up used and had a revisit and it’s not as bad as I remembered. Please don’t tell Vivian I said that!
Gary Moore by his connection with RUSH got me onboard with the fantastic Run For Cover album. Having ex-UFO dude Neil Carter certainly helped the cause as well. Gary had Phil Lynott and Glenn Hughes on this as well. Check out Moore’s solo on the title track. Moore soars on it!
Y&T put out two releases in 85. Open Fire is a pretty decent live album featuring a bunch of tracks from the catalog of Yesterday and Today. The title track just kicks you right in the nut sack and is brilliant as is 25 Hours A Day. The only knock on this album is the studio track Summertime Girls which is a feeble attempt at a hit. Not only was Summertime Girls on Open FIre but it was also added to the Down For Count release that came out in late 1985. Don’t get me started on Down For The Count! Lol
Adrian Vandenberg and his namesake band put out the poppy Alibi which did nothing for me at all. After the stellar debut in 1982 followed by the so -so followup in 83 comes Alibi in 85 and I need an Alibi if anyone was going to question me if I liked this album!
ZZ Top blasted off with Afterburner. This record had a ton of synth/programmed drums, well actually everything was programmed except for Billy Gibbons who is always is brilliant with the singing and guitar playing. Afterburner tore up the charts back in 85 as this album will always hold a special place for me for three reasons!
1- Afterburner was a gift from my parents Christmas 1985
2- Planet of Women which opens Side 2 is easily in my all-time Top 5 ZZ tunes!
3- Being 18 at the time of Afterburners release and a song titled Woke Up With Wood was just pure SONIC GOLD! (plus it’s a great track)
Iron Maiden released one of the best double live album packages in Live After Death. Double Gatefold. Tons of pics/a booklet featuring a ton of tour info and more pics/ brilliant Eddie artwork and Maiden playing at the high level we are all accustomed too over 4 nights at Long Beach Arena in California!
When the Air Raid Siren tells us all to “Scream For Me Long Beach” by God we all did!
Ted Templeman fresh off of producing 6 Van Halen multi-platinum albums hooks up with the freshly reunited Aerosmith and record one of the best doped up boozed-up live studio albums of all time in Done With Mirrors. What a great bunch of cranked up AeroTracks like My Fist Your Face, Reason A Dog, Shame On You, Gypsy Boots,The Hop. The album flopped commercially as some say it doesn’t sound finished which I disagree with as this was Aero’s last drug hurrah before they sobered up. I love this album and so does Tbone!
Joe Perry doesn’t as if you recall the time I wrote about when I met him outside a hotel in Minneapolis (2003) that I told him that I was psyched that they brought back the fantastic Let The Music Do The Talking in the set that night.
Joe Replied with ” You like that one huh?”
I came back with “I love the Done With Mirrors record”
Joe didn’t respond!
That exact moment made me love Done with Mirrors even more!
Check back in few days with Part 2 of albums that I rocked out with back in 85!