Tag Archives: Mick Brown

Dokken/ Back For The Attack(1987)

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 Rokken Dokken Rokken Dokken….

There I said it! Love Dokken! To me even with there 80’s output of 4 studio albums and 1 Double Live they were pretty consistent with their albums…

In 1987 Dokken released the super-duper long Back For The Attack and to this day I still remember the ads for it saying it was over 60 minutes of Rokken With  Dokken! Now that’s giving the Fan base what they want. This was easily a quick purchase upon release  and I along with many others scooped it up quick when it hit the shelves… If were keeping score it went to #13 on the U.S Charts and to # 25 on the Canadian  Charts.

A lot of years have passed and it was when Mikey Ladano reviewed this album I thought “Sheeeeit…I gotta dust off that bad boy and give it  a listen!” So listen I did and here are my Dokken Facts!

Incase you forgot Dokken is….

Don Dokken – lead vocals
George Lynch – guitar
Jeff Pilson – bass, background vocals
Mick Brown – drums, background vocals

Back For The Attack Track Listing….

Side 1
1. “Kiss of Death” George Lynch, Don Dokken, Jeff Pilson 5:51
2. “Prisoner” Lynch, Pilson, Mick Brown 4:20
3. “Night by Night” Pilson, Lynch, Brown, Dokken 5:23
4. “Standing in the Shadows” Dokken, Lynch, Pilson 5:07
5. “Heaven Sent” Dokken, Lynch, Pilson 4:52
6. “Mr. Scary” (instrumental) Lynch, Pilson 4:31

Side two

7. “So Many Tears” Dokken, Lynch, Pilson 4:56
8. “Burning Like a Flame” Lynch, Pilson, Dokken, Brown 4:46
9. “Lost Behind the Wall” Lynch, Brown, Dokken, Pilson 4:19
10. “Stop Fighting Love” Pilson, Lynch, Dokken, Brown 4:52
11. “Cry of the Gypsy” Dokken, Pilson, Lynch 4:51
12. “Sleepless Night” Lynch, Brown, Pilson 4:32
13. “Dream Warriors” Lynch, Pilson 4:42

13 Tracks! That’s a lot of L.A Hullabaloo so let’s see what the Dokken Crew can muster up…..

Lynch one of the 80s Guitar Hero’s leads off with a SuperStar Riff that charges out of the gate and that would be Kiss Of Death. George is cranked and blasting off like a rocket along with Pilson and Brown leading the charge for Don and his melodic rock voice to come in and take over. Don sings the tale of the Kiss Of Death and it’s  about Aids and Wowzers has Don been hanging out with Bono circa 1987 in preaching? Na…..this is Dokken! On one hand Don will tell you all be careful about what you’re doing while on the other hand  Dokken and staff were stocking up on Party Treats!  Great opening track and Lynch lifts off….

Prisoner being Track 2 is one of mine and I believe Mikey Ladano’s Fav’s as well! It seems to be a forgotten Dokken track as I don’t think they ever tackled this live but it oozes cool! Lynch once again sets his guitar ablaze right  off the bat with a great intro solo while the verses are chill and the chorus take us into money shot…

Night By Night  keeps the party going and its a great song and like many a good band the song is built by the riff. This mid tempo rocker features some good vocals by Don and George of course takes over. Like all good thing syrupy from the 80s Night By Night will keep you humming all night long…..ummmm thats a stretch but if you were my age when this album was released(I turned 20 in 1987) you’ll know what I mean!

 Yep. I dig Standing In the Shadows. The Boys dig deep and come up with a real good pre chorus which is Dokken catchy. Lynch plays another one of my fav solo’s here. That is the thing with these guys and Ratt. Both of these bands had great lead guitar players Ratt with Warren Di Martini and Lynch hanging around Dokken. Plus they had the songs to back it up.

Heaven Sent is melodic Dokken at it’s best. George takes a different approach and instead of playing Guitar Hero he takes a back seat plays some nice clean electric almost Ed Halen like picking. The chorus is an excellent written piece of Rock. The song falls far from wimpdom  as  Brown keeps the  song moving at a decent clip!

Mr Scary is George locking Don out of the studio and slamming down a bunch of Riff N Rolls in a musical Tour De Force with Mick slamming double bass drums while Pilson plays his Simple Simon Bass Licks and Lynch solo’s solo’s and solo’s…..

Thats just Side 1

So Many Tears is a Dokken Melodic Metal To A T! Great straight ahead rocker to start things on Side 2! Dokken 87 was a great band and there friggin egos between the guitar player and singer destroyed this band. At the time I always thought  why can’t Dokken be like Sam Halen in getting along and such. Boy was I  a ding a ling in thinking that way! George and Don combusted as they were about to really make the move from opening  act into Headlining Arenas and KABOOM!  They all went solo and came nowhere near what they had as a unit in Dokken. Maybe they had suffered brain damage from all that hair spray whiffing around when they shot the cover for 1985’s Under Lock And Key. See Hair Do’s Pic Below…..

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HAHAHAHA….remember the video to this tune! This is the case of a Fruity Video ruining a good tune. At the time I giggled as Don and The Boys are blasted off their rockers and hanging off a Fire Truck! Ok I Geddit…Burning Like A Flame if you close your eyes and not watch the video is a real good track..Frigg Yeah I’m posting it…

Did you watch it? Cool in some ways back than when you were a 80s Rocker in LA and you could  get Loaded and cruise around on a Fire Truck while Mick Brown plays his drum sticks on a ladder for Fucks sake! Sounds like I’m bitter? You bet your Ass I am! Hahaha… In 1988 I was washing dishes in a Hospital Kitchen while George is playing pool with his guitar in a rock video!  Aaaaaaaargh! FTW!

For myself and myself only the next three tracks Lost Behind The Wall/Stop Fighting Love and Cry OF The Gypsy are ok tracks. Nothing I really want to discuss about them but that there ok. Filler like perhaps? I dunno when I spun them for this review after not listening to them for years they didn’t really do it. Even back in 87-88 I recall these songs being a slog to get through…

Sleepless Nights! Wowzers what a great end of the album GEM! Lynch set’s sail with a Sleazy L.A.  like Riff and were off! This mid paced walloper has a real good chorus and yes as per protocol whether Don likes it or not George carries a lot of the Dokken albums with his playing. Real cool use of some percussion during the chorus as well. Bona fide Winner! Sleepless Nights puts the Dokken train back on track after the slight derailment of the previous 3 songs!

Dream Warriors. Another decent tune which was included here as I didn’t ever seldom buy Soundtrack albums. (Come to think of it Tbone had a pretty decent one back in the day which I should review sometime) Dream Warriors is a decent paced end of the album throwdown track album which the boys hang out with Freddy Kruger…. Read an interesting  blurb (Think it was in the excellent I Want My MTV  book) that when Dokken was filming the video to this track i read something about Krugers Finger Nails/Blow and Dokken? Ummm you figure it out…….HA!

Dokken put out a fine album stuffed with 13 tracks! I think if they would have shaved of the 3 song’s that didn’t do it for me they would have still had a decent 10 song album which was a lot stronger than what others were putting out at the time…….

 

 

 

Dokken/Beast From The East(1988) Part 2!

 

Let’s get right to it Folks with sides 3&4 of Beast From The East….

Cast of Characters- Don Dokken(Vocals),George Lynch(Geetar),Jeff Pilson(Bass) and Mick Brown(Drums)

King Of Yammering- Deke

Actually before we get to it everyone knows my deal with Greatest Hits Albums and how I have a issue with them. Ha! Well one of my faithful Arena Rock Readers BMellis said within my review on Wednesday in regards to the first part of Beast From The East  I was bashing Greatest Hits albums that I was taking Cheap(Pot)  Shots at him (BMellis) and his sidekick  Rockin Roberts without naming them! Hahaha,myself and BMellis had a good laugh about this as this wasn’t my intention but from now on…yeah it’s gonna be!

To Be Fair to these two Greatest Hits Guru’s (BMellis&RockinRoberts) they like the best  songs on compilations so be it……

Seriously though where is The Hunter?

HEAVEN SENT-Don leads the Japanese faithfull with some opening “oh oh oh!” And they follow and George plays some real chill cool riffs during the verses and the song like so many Dokken tracks ramps up at the chorus! Great tune! Slow build of a tune but it still has some ommph to it!

ITS NOT LOVE-more Curious George playing some more real chill riffs and this song has single written all over it! Don tells us “Why Baby Why?” Seriously Don you just regroup,pick up the chics hit the next town and party down on the Tour Bus like there’s no tomorrow! Thats how Tbone explained it to me on how Rockstars roll! Ha! Great catchy chorus and more back and forth banter between Don and the Japanese faithful!  You realize if your a fan of Dokken just how many of these tunes on this double live  were singles …..speaking of singles…lookie what’s next!

ALONE AGAIN-oh oh power ballad ….make it mega power ballad time! This song sold the Tooth And Nail album and out of the ten tracks on Tooth And Nail this was the only power ballad! Actually compared to a lot of crap at the time this is pretty good and a lot of bands copied Dokkens format. By that I mean nice soft quiet verses and once the chorus hits….KABOOM big time power riffs, Que big time guitar hero solo than back for one more romp around the chorus and nice little fade out…..back in the mid to late 80s this is how LA Bands made a ton of cash! Myself I made little cash washing dishes in a cafeteria to fund my music addiction! FIRST TIME EVER…A POWER BALLAD VIDEO IS POSTED here at ARENA ROCK….Ummm no I’m not mellowing!

JUST GOT LUCKY-things in Tokyo ramp back up and Just Got Lucky is Don going on  about how the woman is the devil in disguise! Ha…we all have been there done it….George plays some good guitar whereas the song sounds like a big solo but it’s not if that makes sense. Just watch the video!

BREAKING THE CHAINS-when most people think of Dokken they think of this song! Fair enough as its a good song for me though when I think of It I remember the adds Rokken with Dokken! What I wanna know is how much was the record company Yahoo being paid yearly to come up with selling slogans like Rokken With Dokken! This song features a real good lead vocal into the chorus. Lunch peels rubber on the solo while Pilson and Don handle the vocals ….

IN MY DREAMS-Don,Jeff and Mick do some acapella with  the intro and the songs goes from there. This was a pretty good decent rock single and it pushed Dokken in sales and solidified there fan base! Watch the video from Philly 1987 style…these cats can play and sing…

TURN ON THE ACTION-end of the show, time to hot dog some quick rock. George shreds, Don howls, Pilson holds down the bass while Wild Mick smashes his drums and there off! Rokken Dokkens night in Tokyo comes to a end!

WALK AWAY-so here’s  a studio track tacked on the end of the live  album! Walk Away is kinda a ballad. Walk Away Dokken and they all literally did just that! I recall this video and I think Don was sporting some real funky looking dreads in the hair dept. I was fuckin spooked and never revisited Walk Away again….can’t even tell you about the track other than its not a rocker….

IN CONCLUSION – Dokken,too bad they split. I dug these guys and was pleasantly surprised that in 2015 I still dig this live album! It’s a solid ball of live rock well I’m sure there was tweaking in the studio but who cares. What I don’t know what was tweaked  won’t hurt my deal with this record! Lynch is awesome on this and when I thought about reviewing this album I was thinking I hope I can make it through with Curious George going off to shredville. Sure George does during some solos and of course his guitar solo but no worries folks he stays within the lines(ha!) .

These guys if they would have stayed together were  well on there way to Arena Headline  Status but …….

SHIT HAPPENS!

Dokken/ Beast From The East(1988) Part 1!

 

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….

SONIC WAVES…Dokken/Tooth And Nail

Dokken in September of 1984 release Tooth And Nail and this is my first purchase of there’s. There debut album Breaking The Chains was already out there and even though I seen the video of Breaking The Chains a few times on MuchMusic it just floated by me. Nothing personal Don Dokken it’s just I had to stretch my $$$$ and well,acts like Van Halen/Iron Maiden/Kiss/ACDC dictated what in my wallet was being spent! So I guess you could say that Dokken was a second tier band at my home as far as dollars went but still when I seen the cover of the claw coming out of the ocean to grab at the slick Dokken logo ahhhh hell I was in!

If you know anything about these guys is that the two main guys Don Dokken(singer) and George Lynch(guitar) Ummm dislike could be the word used here! They did not see eye to eye on a matter of things but they made it work until late 1988 when Don bolted!

Anyways you gotta hand it to Mick Brown(drums) and Jeff Pilson(bass) they hung around as well Til the end but I guess when the party’s raging year after year who the hell wants to leave right?

And to introduce my review of Tooth And Nail I will say DOKKEN RYHMES WITH ROCKIN…(yeah that was brutal,don’t blame me,in the 80s they used this in there adds!)

WITHOUT WARNING-a quick little musical opener (loud synth,loud guitar)featuring no vocals and sets the table for ….

TOOTH AND NAIL-Brown goes double bass drumming off the hop and Pilson and Lynch smash down the guitar and bass. Now heerrrreeeee’sssss Donnie taking the vocals and what a slick calculated move by starting off the album with a jack rabbit of a number and Lynch nails down all the 80s trappings of guitaring! Quick notes,hammer ons,whammy bar dive bombs! I’m fucking hooked yeah man Dokken is Rocking with Deke! Ha!

JUST GOT LUCKY- Brown kicks off the proceedings and Lynch does what Lynch does well and he keeps himself in check on this tune and this is catchy happy Dokken. The chorus is pretty good and yeah I guess you could say HOOK! Good on them they got some video spins out of this track as well!

HEARTLESS HEART-you know the drill ‘You got a Heartless Heart” that’s it kids! This song is 80s Dokken to the T! Brown and his drums drive this tune and it’s one of the few Dokken tunes that Lynch doesn’t have a rip of a solo he contains himself on this track or maybe he was busy dying his hair that day! I recall one day back in Highschool there was a copy of Circus Magazine kicking around and there was a pic of Lynch and man he had the fruitest hair colour going half yellow half black kinda looked like a banana that’s starting to turn colour! We howled called him Curious George and Banana Man..we were young and stoooopid! This song features the ritzy glitzy pre chorus vocals and gang vocals. Dokken tries to pull a Leppard vocally that way

DONT CLOSE YOUR EYES- big Lynch riffing and this song is one of the better tracks. Lynch plays guitar hero flexing and bending them strings and flinging lick after lick! Brown and Pilson keep the rhythms moving along and Don lays down a cool chill vocal! Cool song all around!

WHEN HEAVEN COMES DOWN-Dokken comes close with this track! As in this could have been track 11 on Kiss Lick It Up Album easily! This is big dumbo Kiss arena power building rock n roll! Lynch opens this and this tune kinda sludges forward like Kiss All Hells Breaking Loose. Dokken just plays it a little quicker just the pace of it really! It’s all here,big guitar,big backing vocals,loud drums but man when I listen to the opening riff is George playing his guitar in a tunnel? Man it sounds echoey! Ahh that’s right Tom Werman produced this!

INTO THE FIRE- bam bam bam…do ..do…do..bam bam bam. That’s me making the drum noises to the beginning of this track! This is a great rock track! One of there better known songs! I won’t say much more just watch the video posted as it features Banana George! Fire! Smoke! Helicopters and my favourite the chick who eats fire and slams a gong! Bravo !!

BULLETS TO SPARE- just a straight ahead Rockin with Dokken tune! Once again a song with big vocals! 1984 and everyone is slammim around looking for hits! I’m sure record company executives always had there eyes on the charts “Boys,we need hits!” Bullets To Spare though is not of them. It’s a solid rock track. Dokken are not rocket scientists but they did have a good knack for writing straight ahead rockers!

ALONE AGAIN-woooooowzers! Here’s the track that put these guys on the charts,in the magazines,on tour(opening for Kiss). Don and the boys go right to Power Ballad Formula Chapter 1 …insert acoustic guitar to drive the verse’s along with a bit of drums to push it a little and than FUCKIN BOOM …the chorus with  big time electric guitar power chords/ Don weeping in his voice about lost love/ cue into big guitar solo. Bam!! Mission Accomplished!

TURN ON THE ACTION-Lynch begins the surge on his guitar and Brown once again rocks the double bass on his drums and boom this is the end of the album blowout. Riff rock into the night!

IN CONCLUSION-Dokken sets the plate for Deke to buy another 4 Dokken albums after Tooth And Mail so I guess I bought in to the Dokkens business model which was hook em when there young! Actually I remember taping this album for my buddy Chico as he just turned 16 at the time and had his first car and like I explained in my review of ACDC’s Back In Black he wanted fast Rockin tunes! The song Tooth And Nail delivered …..