Old Dude School of Rock- Part 2-1986

Continuing on. Back in 86 here is another 11 Pack of records that I was spinning regularly.

The Boss that is Bruce Springsteen released in November 1986 a 3 album or 3 cassette tape box set that had about 3.5 hours of Bruce and the E Street band playing all there hits and some lesser-known tracks. It was all packaged nicely and neatly along with a slick insert that had a bunch of pics and info on where all the songs were recorded between the years 1975-85. I don’t think I have to tell you all what myself and Tbone got that year for Xmas!

Actually, we both got it on cassette tape which is probably a first at the time! Considering the only Bruce album I owned up till that point was Born In The USA this box set got us pretty much caught up with the classics.

Constrictor from Alice Cooper was my first ever purchase of a Coop album. 86 and Alice is back with guitarist Kane Roberts who looked like Rambo and together they put out some cool tracks like Teenage Frankenstein, Life and Death of the Party, The World Needs Guts. Sure the album sounds tinny and the drums sound thin but for some reason, I was ok with it. Considering I was a KISS fanboy it was cool to finally buy an album from the dude that KISS took some ideas from to become millionaires.

3 debuts came out as well that I got into and so did many others.

1- 4 chick dudes from Cali via Pennsylvania released Look What The Cat Dragged In that once the single Talk Dirty To Me took off and raced up the charts along with a ton of video airplay all bets were off. Poison was the name and playing Arena Cock Rock was the Game. This album sold like hotcakes and why not. Poison hit that spot mixing glam metal and 3 chords and we bought into it. Over time though some spots on this album, I can’t really handle anymore but overall it served its purpose at that time.

Cry Tough even to this day is still a great Poison track. Even better was the time when Tbone was inebriated(SHOCKER) and sang the chorus of Cry Tough as if Elvis was the fronting Poison.  That’s perhaps the main reason I still dig Cry Tough to this day!

2- First seen the video of Modern Day Cowboy on this old Hard Rock show that we used to get locally on TV from Detroit back in the day. Once I heard the track with the dueling guitars and driving drums along with a singer who sounded like if Janis Joplin had balls I was hooked. Tesla hit Gold with Mechanical Resonance which had a bunch of killer tunes plus the fact that these guys just dressed up in jeans and T-shirts was appealing as well. The exact opposite of Poison in looks and hooks. These cats could play.

3-A band that got themselves all glammed up on the cover but could deliver some stellar tracks was Cinderella. Night Songs was the debut and was a pretty corker of an album. Tom Keifer is one talented mo-fo and this album shows Tom getting his foot in the door delivering one classic after another on his one. The title track reeks of AC/DC. Shake Me is The Sweet on roids while Back Home Again is pure Metal. Nobody’s Fool the kinda ballad tune on the record put these guys through the roof as even their videos were a hoot to watch. Getting the opening spot on Bon Jovi’s 1986 Slippery Tour certainly helped the cause.

On a side note when Keifer rolled into Tbay solo a few years back, he opened his set with Once Around The Ride from the debut. I was in from the word GO!

Shake It Don’t Break It!

Speaking of Jovi here comes Jon and his hired guns (his band) along with Bruce Fairbairn, Bob Rock, and Desmond Child and struck absolute fortune with Slippery When Wet. After the promise of the debut and the dud in the followup comes Slippery When Wet which even to this day is a great rock record. You Give Love A Bad Name, Livin On A Prayer and Wanted Dead or Alive were huge single’s and these videos were played to death. Today I can’t really listen to them just due to the fact of the overplayed factor. Still, Jovi could not be beaten in the sales department that year. The production was stellar,  the songs were top-notch as were the performances by all the members (Sorry Alec).  I liked the lesser-known tracks like I’d Die For You, Social Disease, Wild In The Streets basically the non-singles lol. In saying that Bon Jovi put out one fine damn piece of music.

Ozzy kept Jake E Lee and dumped everyone else and got himself a new rhythm section and delivered to the faithful The Ultimate SIn which was pretty good (not as great as 83’s Bark At The Moon album). Ron Nevison handled the production duties and it sounds like a mid 80s Heart album which is not a bad thing as we all know how that self-titled Heart album sold with Ron at the controls. Jake being credited in the co-writes with the Ozzman delivered some cool stuff like Secret Loser, Never Know Why Thank God For The Bomb, Killer of Giants and the cool title track.  Jake played his ass off on this record and once the tour ended got himself canned.

Thanks for coming out Jake!

Cheap Trick struggled in the mid-’80s to about the late ’90s. It was tough being a Trick Fan yet I still bought their stuff and more often than not was the case I was disappointed. The Doctor was the new one in 86 from Trick and geez this record was drowned in a ton of synthesizers and some questionable at best, material. Rick and Robin tried man to make a different sounding rock album but it just did not connect with me except for two, ok maybe 3 tracks. Opening song It’s Up To You is a great track. Good driving tempo and a real slick chorus. Even better was the very last song on the album It’s Only Love which is one of the best CT songs ever. The video for this was very creative with the sign language going on in the video as well. Such a classic great song that should have been a hit that may have saved this album but it didn’t. You folk’s out there in the streaming world should check out It’s Only Love. Do it.

Cheap Trick still though kept on trying and the next three studio albums I purchased. Did I like em? Find out when posts on 1988-1990-1994 Old Dude Rock roll around.

Ratt released  Dancing Undercover and looking back at this album 34 years later it’s apparent its Ratt’s version of Done With Mirrors(Aerosmith).  I still recall the conversation me and Tbone had about this release in the hallways of our Highschool (Lakeview High) back in the fall of 86.

dEKE- “Whadda think of Dancing Undercover?”

Tbone- “Sounds rushed!”

I was kinda perplexed by that comment coming from the trap of my best friend. But I get it. Dancing Undercover didn’t have the “Track” so to speak meaning the Single. Dance and Body Talk were the two singles from this album but they did not set the charts on fire. I betcha there was a freak out at Atlantic Records when the suits heard this album! lol.

I have always liked Dancing Undercover. It’s Ratt doing what they wanna do and I like how there are about 2 seconds between the tracks and no ballads. Bam one tune after another. 7th Avenue and Looking For Love are stellar songs. I think the second side is stronger than the first side and the first side is no slouch.  Maybe that’s why I like albums like Dancing Undercover and Done With Mirrors. Two albums that sound like a ton of blow was snorted off the recording console.  I liked what these bands sometimes could muster up when their heads were up in the clouds so to speak.

Plus both Aero with DWM’s and Ratt with Dancing Undercover had one more thing in common and that the packaging for both records SUCKED!

Now onto the two albums, everyone has been waiting for!

David Lee Roth and Sammy Van Halen.

It’s 5150 Time!

Van Halen came out swinging fast n furious in March 86 with 5150. Sam/Ed/Mike and Alex dove headfirst and made a fun party rock album. Some of 5150 had its moment of chillness (Love Walks In) and of course the power rock tracks (Good Enough) and hard-driving fast tempo (Get Up) tunes. I liked 5150 from the get-go. Ed loved his Casio keyboard and with that came the brilliant Why Can’t This Be Love and Dreams. Hell, half the album is keyboard-driven but when Ed had you thinking that there was a ton of keyboard action just listen to Summers Night,5150, Best of Both Worlds, Good Enough, Get Up. EVH was still the man on the 6 string!

Hagar being the new guy brought the party with him but it was a different kind of party. Sam sings like no one’s business on 5150 and for myself and many others, we were ok with the vocal change.

Sam summed it up best with what sounds like a boozed-up synth thrown together tune written in 5 minutes called Inside.

Now listen here, it’s not what you are, ya see, it’s how ya dress
‘Cause that’s one thing I learned from these guys, I must confess
Now me look, I got this job not just bein’ myself, huh
I went out, I bought some brand new shoes
Now I walk like someone else, hey

Over time I’m thinking 5150 may be the best VH album of the Hagar era. Just a fun record.
Roth came back in the Summer with Eat Em And Smile as Roth employed Steve Vai on guitar and together wrote up a bunch of VH like rock.
Vai took the bull by the horns basically throughout and off we go. Steve humped that wang bar like no one’s business. Together Roth/Vai combined on 6 songs on Eat Em that were right on par with what Van Hagar was doing. Yankee Rose, Elephant Gun, Goin Crazy, Ladies Night In Buffalo and my too fav Dave/Steve tunes Big Trouble and Bump and Grind.
The players on this album are top-notch. Gregg Bisonette drums his ass off while some wanker on the 4 string does his part well.
Roth succeeded and proved he could record a full out rock album without the Halen guys. I was relieved especially after the whole California Girls EP which had me a little concerned as I thought Roth was going Vegas( that came a few decades later)
For a time I could not pick who I liked more as I liked what both acts were doing just fine.
In other words more music for us fans.
Divorce at times in bands can be a plus as this was proved in 86 by Roth and Halen.
Rack a What??
Coming up-1987

26 thoughts on “Old Dude School of Rock- Part 2-1986”

  1. Now this is more like it. I had 8 of these. Ultimate Sin was my first Ozzy album I had bought, I obviously bought Ratt and Cinderella. But the two that were the most fun were the Roth and Van Hagar albums as that was such a huge deal back then. I personally think Roth won as Vai killed it on that album. I don’t feel Eddie gave me anything as cool. Great stuff Deke!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Vai loves that wang bar. EVH was going elsewhere with the Guitar as what can you do when you win all the Guitar Polls year after year and put out 6 killer Guitar records with Roth.
      Both great albums.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The Boss ruled in Australia during this period. Born In The USA was still in the charts and this box set came. Ive got the LP version and I think it’s excellent.

    I got Constrictor after Trash. And Alice was always liked in Australia but Trash was his true comeback album.

    Talk Dirty To Me was everywhere and so was Poison.

    “Mechanical Resonance” as you said had a bunch of killer tunes and the guys were the exact opposite of Poison in looks and hooks. But Poison got noticed in Oz at this time and Tesla didn’t. I know it’s not fair.

    And Cinderella also got noticed in Oz. As you say Tom Keifer is one talented mo-fo. And man so did Bon Jovi. For Jovi it was like the Beatles pandemonium that I saw on Beatles documentaries.

    And Ozzy just kept on getting press. Stories of rehab and drunkenness and then he dropped “The Ultimate SIn”, which i was all over plus he had a song “Secret Loser” on The Wraith soundtrack

    And as you say, Jake is finally credited in the co-writes

    Yep Cheap Trick did struggle, until “The Flame” brought them back to Number 1 in Australia.

    Ratt still had a lot of goodwill from Round and Round and Lay It Down that the TV music channels in Oz gave their “Dance” and “Body Talk” clips a spin. But not for long. As you say it’s an album that sound like a ton of blow was snorted off the recording console.  

    When I heard 5150 I thought it was better than all of the Van Halen albums up until then. It’s just that every song sounded strong and Hagar was perfect.

    And then Roth drops Yankee Rose and I’m like fuck, I like Roth and his Halen catalogue is the bomb.

    Hey waitress, look it here man, you got any specials here tonight
    Me and the fellas might be interested in?
    What’s that, what, rack a what?
    Well, I’ll have some of that

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The Bruce album I listened to non stop. Now when I hear the studio versions I even half way expect some of the stories he tells to go with them. That was one of the most complete live albums I’ve ever had.
    I liked Alice Cooper’s Teenage Frankenstein off of that album.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The local freak with a twisted Mind! lol
      Nice to hear the feedback the Springteen Box Set is getting.
      A huge seller and I think that may be my first ever box set as 19 year old back in 86.


      1. It was almost too much to take in….Nahhh…it was great! lol.
        It was good seeing Cooper come back that way. I’d been a fan of his seventies stuff.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Nice. It was a good intro for me. For some reason I skipped his next one but was onboard with Trash. Finally got to see Coop live back in 2012 when he opened for Maiden.
        Cool thing about that was he played outside in broad daylight in about 90 degree heat and he rocked.
        Showed up to Tbay a few years ago and my bro scored front row tickets. Stellar show. I’ll link the review here….


        Liked by 1 person

      3. Thanks Max. Great show. Coop totally delivers. That live album he put out at the time A Paranoramal Evening with is fantastc. I saw the Coop on that Wednesday and the live album dropped two days later.
        That was a great week.


    1. Good call on the bootlegs C.B. Never thought of that but I’m sure that had something to do with it as well.
      5150 is a great rock record. These guys were jacked up big time on it and it shows as it comes across as fun.


      1. I think Sammy pumped some new energy into the band. I like what he brought.
        Springsteen if I remember was one of the most bootlegged musician at the time. He was more worried about the shitty quality of those records than the money (I’m sure he had his eye on the bottom line)

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Totally. I choose to believe he had integrity about it all the way. He was always about the sound and quality. Plus getting it to his fans the way it was intended not recorded with some little hand held recorder. The record company would have been happy about the bottom line.
        I love the story he talks about , I think it was before ‘The River’. You can really feel his honesty.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Indeed, Side 1 is a greatest hits side. I have to give Jovi props as soon as Slippery was released or shortly before they were opening across all of Canada opening for Priest. I’m sure the ballads were not played on that tour. lol

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m not much of a Bon Jovi fan but I’ve always liked Raise Your Hands. Probably because of the Spaceballs connection.

    I had a Cinderella greatest hits CD in the ’90s and really regret selling it. Out of all the “hair bands” I thought they had some of the best grooves. I have to get that back someday.

    Your right about Roth/Van Halen. It was like a divorce where both parents are trying to outdo each other. Well, 5150 and Eat Em are fantastic so I’m not going to bother to compare them and just shut up and listen to both!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly both 5150 and Eat Em are solid albums. The winners were the fans of both. Cinderella was always a good band. Their image did them in.
      Ha Spaceballs. Round of applause for Barf!


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