Tag Archives: Steve Vai

Sonrisa Salvaje

This pic was taken at a show a few weeks back where the DLR 1986 band was gonna have a reunion but the Fire Marshall cancelled due to overcrowding.

Ok so this pic was taken above with Steve Vai/Gregg Bisonette/David Lee Roth and Billy Sheehan back in early December (2015)where Dave was gonna reunite the Eat Em Band(first time since 1986) for a night but due to overcrowding at a club(2,000 waiting to get in)the Fire Marshall axed the show. So no go …what a total piss off Sez I!

This band kicked serious ass back in 1986 on record and on stage so it would be real cool if they did another go round in 2016! Vai is still a monster on guitar! Sheehan is still a freak of nature  on bass while Bisonette still mashes the drums! In other words the musical portion of this band would still have the A game! Dave is Dave man…take it or leave it! With this band I’m taking it! I would love to hear that Eat Em stuff played live again and not the Yankee Roses or Goin Crazys but more of the Bump N Grind,Big Trouble,Shyboy tunes from the debut! F’in rights! Bring it boys!

Word on the street is Dave’s contract is done with VH and once again so are they with Dave! In other words no more albums or tours with Roth….Adios I guess is in order!

Now take a look at that pic above! Dave rejoined VH in 2007 and I don’t think I ever seen a VH band Roth included  backstage shot where they looked happy with each other and here’s Dave rolling in backstage with Vai and crew and he looks like he wants to be there …

Food for thought….

SONIC WAVES…..David Lee Roth/Skyscraper

January 1988 and one of my first purchases that year  was Skyscraper by Mr Roth! We all know the deal with Halen and Dave back in the 80s so I won’t  really go there! Dave though stepped up and released one of my favourite all time great solo albums (Eat Em And Smile) after leaving Van Halen! Check out my review on this site of Eat Em and you will know my deal!

Great anticipation awaits so when I purchased Skyscraper on Cd(one of my first cd purchases ever back in 88) I was surprised by the sound! Dave was always changing it up. But man did he ever change it up! 80s polish,very slickly produced by Dave and co produced by Steve Vai!

But who cares there’s Dave on the cover of Skyscraper climbing some big ass mountain in a country known as somewhere so this pic tells us that Dave is still out there !

Wonder what one of the Picasso Brothers has up his sleeve …

KNUCKLBONES-wow man Dave is streamlining his sound! Gone is the live hard-hitting sound of Eat Em And Smile in is a more technically 80s sounding record borderline almost sterile sounding! (Drums are soundings Ummm different)Who cares though it’s freezing time in Tbay in this January weather of 1988 and Daves cooking a batch of new tunes! Steve Vai rocks the guitar like you knew the mother would right! Vai is awesome in Roth’s band! Whitesnake? Don’t get me started man! Dave leads the parade and You can feel it right down to your Knucklebones!

JUST LIKE PARADISE- Brett Tuggle cranks the keys on this radio/video smash aroo that was I betcha the highest charting single off of Skyscraper! But man the sound  of the production is weak but whatever Dave pulls of one catchy chorus that even if your yelling out ‘Commercialism’ during this track when all is said and done your still mumbling well after the song is done….’this must be just like living in paradise’ Case closed! Also the vid is you know full of selling points for the tour ….boxing ring! Stage kicks,Vai double necked hearted guitar! All the trimmings ….

BOTTOM LINE- ahh there we go. Dave fires up the musical bong and takes a hit and lays into the Bottom Line which easily could have fit on the Eat Em album! Billy Sheehan and Steve Vai along with Gregg Bissonette take the reins on this one and rocket it skyward. Super duper cool rock song! Love the middle part where it sounds like the song is ….wait? Is Dave backward masking his music! Ha…..

SKYSCRAPER-I’m Falling Fallin Fallin……The title track and its a tour de force of 80s production. Dave goes all tech and Stevie Vai is on board as well! Did you know that the backward message at the end of the song says “Obey your parents and wear a condom! “Hahahaha …that goofy Dave he may go all gloss and shit but he has his sense of humour!

DAMN GOOD- Vai lays down some excellent acoustic guitar and its an exact  opposite of Skyscraper(the tune) no frills just solid acoustic picking by Mr Vai! Dave’s just chilling and reminiscing about those Damn Good Times! Great tune!

HOT DOG AND A SHAKE- Yep Dave and Stevie dump the acoustic and now rock it up looking for a Shake to go with that Hot Dog! Ha! This is late 80s Vai goes wanky with his whammy bar and its the tour opener of The Skyscraper Tour! Lyrics are goofy,song is goofy but hell its Roth so goofy to me via Dave = Street Cred!

STAND UP- keyboards drive this tune! Too  be honest I kinda skipped this track…

HINA-oh yeah man now we’re talking Hina is a great track! Vai does some  real cool fucking around at the start of the track on his guitar and Gregg Bissonette joins in and then Billy Sheehan is grooving da bass and then the Ringmaster himself David Lee telling us ” he’d like to get know the natives but he’s only flesh and blood”! Umm what? But cool regardless! During the chorus Dave is singing “Come back back back back…. What a great fucking track! One of the DLR BANDS best tracks!(EVER!)

PERFECT TIMING – keyboards drive this tune! Too be honest I kinda skipped this track….did I just not type this two songs above? More importantly there is no actual bass on this tune! Brett Tuggle and his Casio Keyboard give Mr Sheehan the day off and I guess that may be one of the reasons Billy bolted after its release.

TWO FOOLS BORN A MINUTE-guess that makes Dave 3! He says it not me! This is cool Shuffle  Demon Dave! Rhyming off cool lingo lines. Guitars are real good courtesy of Steve and some real quick bass runs by Billy and  toss in a side order of horns and boom classic send off and viola Dave 1988 is off and running…

IN CONCLUSION- Dave/Steve/ Gregg and the soon to leave Billy put out an album totally different from Eat Em! At the time I was like Huh? But over time make that 27 years time maybe that was Dave’s plan! Put out first actual full solo album release sounding like previous band(Van Halen)and when all the fan boys (myself,my younger bro Todd,Tbone and his brothers) lap it up its time to change gears and these fanboys will follow and follow we did but it came at a cost(kinda). Today I still find I can listen to this album but I will skip but Hina is the winner but there are a few misses as well and if you read this you will know what I’m talking about!

Still though…Skyscrapers a interesting record almost Dave and Steve kinda getting a little serious at times here maybe they should have called this THE JOSHUASCRAPER! after that  U2 album(Joshua Tree)

Never the Less it was a pretty good to start 1988 with the Diamond One!

3/4’s Filler….Whitesnake/Slip Of The Tongue

Oh oh here comes Nov 1989 and Whitesnake are striking while the iron is hot! What would a new Whitesnake be without a whole new lineup on the new studio album! Of course the whole 1987 album band is canned and gone and Coverdale pretty much keeps the touring band from the 1987 tour intact (Sarzo /Aldridge/Vandenberg) Vivian Campbell is gone so he carries the  WS tradition of getting your ass fired! So what does Dave Coverdale do? He goes after Steve Vai he layed down some serious guitar action with Dave Roth on the Eat Em And Smile and Skyscraper albums and man his guitar suited Roths voice so when I heard he had joined Whitesnake I was like ?….??….??? I mean I had a hard time wrapping my head around Vai’s Wang Bar  7 String Sting Ibanez Workout Extravaganza!

But with all  big band releases I was a first week buyer of Slip Of a The Tongue! I dunno I had a hard time taking this album serious and I will explain why….

First of all Adrian Vandenberg wrote with OL Cov all the tunes on this album but than he fucked up his arm and Coverdale waits for no one so he enlisted Vai who did all the guitars on Slip Of The Tongue! Now don’t get me wrong here people Vai is very good but not in Whitenake 1990! His playing is just over the top nuts at times on some of these songs and I will review quickly my thoughts on a few tunes!

SLIP OF THE TONGUE- bam this is the opener and it’s pretty good it almost sounds like a tune that could have maybe just  maybe fit on the 1987 album.  Tommy Aldridge plays some serious double bass drums and Dave is already screeching like his nutsack is being squeezed by that crazy chick on the previous albums videos! Oh wait a minute she was doing that to him! Ha! Seriously though Vai is restrained on this tune ….he’s setting a guitar trap!

CHEAP AN NASTY- now this has some cowbell and it kicks along with a pretty cool chorus but man the Vai solo just goes into Eat Em And Smile territory which is fine and dandy but not here in Whitesnake hard blues which has turned into arena c*%k rock 101!

NOW YOURE GONE- I dunno these guys are now writing for the radio! I understand it’s the game to be played but c’mon Cov don’t make it so obvious now.

KITTENS GOT CLAWS-next…..

JUDGEMENT DAY- now we’re talking! The Snakes pull of some big bombastic Zep riffs and it works! Jimmy Page must have been listening to this one as a few years later him and Coverdale did the fantastic Coverdale /Page album! Man that was a good one! So yep this is a great Whitesnake song…..

SLOW POKE MUSIC-this is another good song and it fits Whitesnakes style but the lyrics well are kinda goofy but hey it’s 1990! It’s time for some Slow Poke followed by  some Cherry Pie along with some Poison ( take your pick of any Poison song!)

SAILING SHIPS- this totally could have fit on any Vandenberg record and it’s well played and it’s got some great acoustic work on it!

The rest of the songs I never really took a liking to them. This album was the end of the line for me and Whitesnake. I got tired of all the personal upheaval and band member changes like geez Dave just call your your band Coverdale or Coversnake or Fire Yer Ass! …just don’t call it a band when it ain’t. The other thing to me was OL Cov it seemed would just run and gun with whoever was in his band and once he used up there creativity …..Now Your Gone(Hahahaha) seriously though he’s written some great albums but by 1990 times were a changing…….

KINDA IN CONCLUSION- perhaps I’m being harsh here folks but seriously by 1990 Whitesnake was a brand name in North America. I mean look at the vids I have posted for all 4 Blogs. You can see the transformation from 1980 – 1990 in sound and look and yep it worked for a album or two. I think Dave should have called this Coverdale/Vai instead of  Whitesnake and I may have skipped on this on the 3/4’s Filler column! Vai is a gifted guitarist (check out my Roth review of Eat Em And Smile) but for Whitesnake he was just playing way over the top crazy for my liking at the time. Of course Ol Cov shut down the Snake  in 1990 perhaps he knew the tide was turning and perhaps that was due to some of the turnouts in North America.

Case in point…….

Tbone and myself when we were in Winnipeg to see Motley Crüe in June of 1990. We were talking to some guy in the hotel lobby who went and seen Whitesnake/ Bad English when they played the Peg 4 days before the Crüe show!  I asked him how was Whitesnake. The dude told me they were good but only 2,000 people were there whereas when the Crüe played 4 days later 12,000 were there…. I don’t know what shocked me more. The fact that there were only 2,000 people at the show or the fact that that Tbone came 4 days from snagging that elusive Bad English Tour Shirt!

Damn,a missed opportunity ……