Tag Archives: Van Halen

Old Dude School of Rock!-1981

 

1981 was a real interesting year in my world of music!  Beginning in January 81 I had gone to a local record shop to pick up John Lennons “Double Fantasy” album as the whole world was still shocked after Lennon was assassinated in December 1980!

My intentions were all about getting the Lennon album until I walked into out local Sam The Record Man and seen on the racks these four long-haired guys calling themselves Van Halen that had them posing on the  front cover.  That album was Woman & Childern First and to this day it for me is perhaps the album that most impacted me. All Nine 9 songs on WACF are stellar. I had never heard guitar sound or played like that! I had never heard a singer think he is Tarzan yodeling away at the beginning of Track 2(Everybody Wants Some!) The Drums and Bass on the album  sound like a runaway locomotive about to come off the tracks. The band is on who knows what chemically but whatever keep the party rolling and by golly David Lee Roth/Eddie Van Halen/Alex Van Halen/Micheal Anthony did just that!

Just 3 short months later VH’s Fair Warning came out and was a real score for me as well! Here’s my favourite new band that I just discovered  and another new album? Ed Van Halen by this time solidifies his greatness in my world making him to this day still my numero uno fav-o 6 stringer!

Can Con started to make a dent in my listening habits as well as Triumph put out the super cool Allied Forces. Triumph were a Canadian 3 piece that featured two lead singers and a freaky dude on Bass! Triumph meant business back in 81. I mean it was about Allied Forces and Rock Troops. Magic Power/Fight The Good Fight and real classic wallop to the head opening track Fool For Your Love. Man Triumph were a lean mean fighting machine back than…

Judas Priest put out for what myself and Tbone could easily call our favourite Priest album and that would be  Point of Entry, Love the sonic’s of this album with just straightforward Rock tracks like Heading Out To The Highway/Desert Plains and the very brilliant very underrated Turning Circles!

Rush made a double dent in my listening habits with both Moving Pictures and Exit Stage Left!  My first foray into the term Prog Rock! Seriously these guys are singing about Honey Dew/Hash and Trees? Course Rush played at a level that was seriously sick I mean who the fuck plays drums like that? Neil Peart does Bitches that’s who!

Another huge game changer was Iron Maiden ‘Killers’. Maiden opened Killers with a musical only number Ides of March that segued way into Wrathchild and I had never heard Metal like this! It was brilliant as the guitars of Davey Murray/Adrian Smith just wailed like no one’s business and what the hell the Bass Player writes all the tunes?? Steve Harris was and is still the deal! Paul Di’anno had a great set of pipes back than and I think took it for granted his situation in Maiden that cost him his spot…

Those ol Horndogs AC/DC released For Those About To Rock(We Salute You) and Tbone was the first one to get this album. We stared at that gatefold pic of the live shot for hours while we listened to Brian Johnson once again sing about the birds and bee’s! We all  bought into the program folks and so did you!

Whitesnake with the live Ain’t No Love In The Heart of the City was my first time dabbling with a Snake album. Whitesnake circa 1981 featured three ex members of Deep Purple laying down that old school Hammond B3 old blues rock vibe 6 years before that Crazy Bird slid all over the hood of the Cov’s Jaguar in those Snake Vid’s!

Aerosmith Live Bootleg made such a huge impact on my listening habits in that it was the first live  album I had ever heard where the band sounded blasted and in another zone yet what was in the grooves  was so good/so classic/so stoned!

Last not least as KISS release The Elder which has KISS wanting to write a concept record! Fair enough but when your 14 and you have heavy hitters like Maiden/Priest/VH/Rush/Triumph putting out hard hitting slabs of rock! Why the F**k am I hearing a flute  on a KISS album?

 

 

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Van Halen: Live-St Paul: Xcel Energy Center(May 19th 2012)

Wow! Time does fly now doesn’t it??

So one of the biggie tours of 2012 was Van Halen touring and supporting their brilliant release at the time A Different Kind of Truth. 

So when a date in St Paul/Minneapolis was announced my brother Todd pounced quickly on tickets and what was real cool was that not only myself and Todd were going but along with us as well was Tbone and his two brothers Dar and Rugg along with another pal Kevin C!

All of our families came down with us on the trip as well but it was a dude’s only ticket to the show not that our ladies minded they understood that Halen especially for myself and Tbone were one of those hard Rockin Bands that we followed religiously during our High School years(1981-85)!

Time does indeed fly. Me and Tbone graduated from High School in 1985 the year that David Lee Roth quit/or got the boot out of Halen.

Fast forward 27 years and here we are along with 17,000 other Halen Fanatics waiting to hear the soundtrack of our youth played at an exceptionally loud volume!

First up was openers Kool & The Gang.  When I first heard they were the openers I laughed. Typical Roth move to shake it up. But you know I have to hand it to these guys as they were very good! Playing live with a full-out Brass section was brilliant. They were entertaining man from the opener Fresh to the closing tune Celebration. Kool was indeed Cool!

After a short break we noticed (as it was a very hot humid day in Minneapolis) that it seemed like someone turned off the air conditioning in the arena right before Halen’s set! Turns out supposedly Roth feels the air conditioning affects his singing! (Whut?)

It got hot in their man but just when you really wanted to start bitchin …

Bam…

Here they are Roth/Wolf along with his ‘Dad’ Eddie and ‘Uncle’ Alex ripping into Unchained and HOLY CRAP we’re off!

22 songs played. 24 if you count Al and Ed’s solo’s. 3 tracks played from the current album (Tattoo/Chinatown/Trouble With Never) and the Hits(JUMP/Panama/Pretty Woman/Dance The Night Away) and my personal fav’s (Romeo’s Delight/Hear About It Later/And The Cradle Will Rock).

Wolf Van Halen is a Beast on the Bass. Man, he plays with a huge sound and does all that crazy finger tapping stuff as well and basically watches Roth with amusement. I wonder what goes through Wolf’s head when he’s tearing up the Bass and Dave is sliding around on his mat? HAHA!

Alex Van Halen with his enormous huge drum set up ploughs through the tunes like it’s nobodies business and I was wishing just maybe he would torch up and set ablaze his gong just like the good old daze. But nope he didn’t and fair enough. His drum solo had him playing to a backing track of what sounded like Mardi Gras or something. It was different…..but doing the songs man he laid waste to his drum kit!

What do you say about Edward. He was on his A Game! Looked cleaned up not like the mess he was when Tbone and Rugg caught Halen on the 2004 Tour! Ed did all his tricks of his trade. Wowed and bedazzled us and played his 9 minute Eruption solo claiming that he is indeed still the Boss! 9 minutes of soloing in which it flew by…

Amazing that Eddie is…

The there’s Dave man…I dunno. Long gone are the days of  the high kicks/ the yanking of his torso in positions that are unknown to mankind. The verbal barrage from the stage at coming down there in the front row and Fucking your Girlfriend if you keep spitting water. You know the whole 80’s schtick that made him one if not the top Arena Dog back in the roaring n snorting 80’s!

In its place is past 50 years young fast tracking to the age of 60. A different Dave. One in which he has a sliding mat out or whatever it is. Crazy Carpet I call it. Just watch the Unchained video I posted from the show and within seconds you’ll know what I mean!

Dave was ok. Vocally live well kinda ok. He made it though the songs, Did his deal ad-libbing  along the way he huffed and puffed at times vocally but what was apparent that the fast boogie rock numbers later in the show like Hot For Teacher Dave was out of gas vocally. It’s like he couldn’t keep up to the Van Halen’s as they ramped up Hot For Teacher big time musically….

She’s The Woman  and especially Romeo’s Delight I posted from the St Paul show. Dave  is a hoot pushing his mic stand around the stage like it’s a broom is friggin hilarious while Wolf is looking at him like how does Roth keep coming up with this shit! I will give Dave credit as he has had to reinvent himself as a frontman. Almost comedian like at times.

Dave though is on another planet. Here posted below is the fantastic  Chinatown! Watch Dave ..need I say more?

 

This show still was great but the air conditioning thing was funny as hell as Dave has really no voice left. Still though musically superb were the Halen Fella’s!

It was cool to hear all the 80’s stuff. You cannot beat it….

Also of note was the night before the St Paul show Halen cancelled about 30 shows that would have made up the 3rd and 4th Leg of the tour. Why? Read somewhere about exhaustion? Umm ok!

You can turn the air conditioner back on!

Van Halen: A Different Kind of Truth(2012)

 

2012 brought out some great albums from Rush/The Cult/KISS/ZZ Top and wait for it…..

VAN HALEN with their first newly recorded written songs(kinda) with long-lost friend Mr David Lee Roth in 27 years!

Thats right ever since Roth rejoined Halen on their first reunion run back in 2007 it was only a matter of time before they had to get in the studio and  bash out an album…

Halen did something smart for a lot of this record as they had Wolf Van Halen(Bassist) sift through old unreleased VH demo’s and perhaps they would work up those tunes which they did in some instances.

Halen also enlisted John Shanks to produce. Shanks does a great job handling and perhaps babysitting/counselling as well as getting  the record finished!

Speaking of Shanks he is currently playing rhythm guitar in Bon Jovi. Why on earth does Jon Bon Pop Tart at this stage need a rhythm player? Why on earth is there an added percussionist as well. Bon Jovi is a Vegas Act live from the YouTube clips I’ve seen…

What A Joke Jovi has become but that’s a rant for another day! Back to the task at hand….

In January of 2012 the preorder of ADKOT appeared on iTunes  and I was all over it as with the preorder purchase you got lead off single and opening track Tattoo.  Upon hearing Tattoo for the first time It was ok. It really wasn’t what I was expecting. Tattoo was a rock track make no doubt about it but it was like Halen trying to grow up and perhaps show a little more of a serious angle to a band known a party guys! But DLR is back perhaps a rockier track would have helped the album more in the long run!

Tattoo to be totally honest with you all had me a little concerned with it being the opening song on the album would this be the tune that set’s the table for the remaining 12 tracks?

Thankfully No….Second track She’s The Woman goes right into old school like VH. Take a collective sigh of relief folks.. VH is back.

From there its a bunch of Rock with of course Guitarist Edward Van Halen playing like only he can. Ripping up the fretboard on ChinaTown laying off the gas on You and Your Blues. 

Things ramp up on Bullethead and As Is. VH showing that even though 3/4’s of the band is past age 50 when they want they can still flex that Mighty Halen Muscle whereas Honeybabysweetiedoll has Dave mush mouthing the lyrics as Ed wails all over the fretboard like no ones business.

One of my fav tracks is the Trouble With Never which sounds like vintage Halen especially during the solo as the drums and bass just let the guitar solo like its 1980 again. Plus right after Ed’s solo Dave goes into that deep monotone old creeper Uncle mode vocal before Ed’s guitar says “No More’ and things get back in order!

Outta Space sounds like the long-lost brother of Atomic Punk from the debut. A song that harkens back to yesteryear and has the band just playing fast and straight forward! Vintage Roth on this one!

With Halen on tour in late spring/early summer 2012 the record company dropped the ball on releasing Stay Frosty as a single(shame on the Suits!) It’s a feel good Halen ass kicker of a track. Hell you gotta love that picking at the start of this track and then it goes all bonkers in that Halen kinda way. A 2012 version of Ice Cream Man…(I posted the video of Stay Frosty at the top of the page!)

Love the heavy stomp of Big River and as per protocol Ed lifts this track off come solo time and that seems to be the current theme of this album.

Album closer Beat’s Workin  is a great ending to ADKOT. A jammed out tune that has a slick chorus to keep the song moving towards the finish line!

What can ya say about ADKOT? Considering it was the followup technically to the 1984 album from well 1984 ADKOT stands on its own merit. A real great hard slamming album and if you were to hear only two tracks that being  Tattoo and Blood and Fire  those two song’s don’t really represent  ADKOT as the album really ramps up after B-B-B-B-B-Bullethead!

Alex plays the drums great as you would expect and Ed just soars on this opus. Dave sings great and writes some cool lyrics. Course Dave’s voice sounds good as he could sing  a line or two and take a week off!(haha) Give Dave his due here. He showed up man….

Everyone goes on still about Micheal Anthony. Hey me too but Wolf plays wicked Bass on this and was a big factor in putting this record together and perhaps getting the three other guys on an album/tour cycle for a few years! Speaking of Wolf he’s currently working on a solo album which I will be interested to check out as I believe he’s recording  the whole thing himself. Kid has talent and we know why right? Still though cut him some slack and just be glad we got an album from Halen period!

Come back Friday for the review of the 2012 ADKOT Tour!

Until Than…..

STAY FROSTY My Friend’s!

Runnin With The Devil/Noel Monk (Book Review)2017

 

So here we finally get 32 years after former Van Halen manager Noel Monk gets the heave-ho from our favourite two twisted dutch brothers Eddie & Alex Van Halen the book(Runnin With The Devil) which chronicles  Noel’s first hand account of trying to harness in Van Halen during the years of Monk’s  managing tenure of the band.(1978-85).

Now if your asking why now  32 years later after being fired would a book come out now. Well as Noel himself writes a final settlement back in 85 meant no publishing a book for years…so it’s now time!

Basically it boiled down to this. Noel managed(tried to) while everything else around it seems was a shit show to say the least!

Speaking of shit shows Noel was actually the road manager for the Sex Pistols on there ill-fated 1978 tour of the United States when after two weeks they were sent packing back to England. Noel had to deal with Sid Vicious & Johnny Rotten so I guess that was a good as any training ground for what would become Monk’s gig with Van Halen!(only it lasted longer than 2 weeks managing Halen)

Monk was jobless after the Pistols gig and but in no time was hired as Halens Road Manager once the debut self titled Halen album hit the streets in 1978. Halen at the time was manged by Marshall Berle who was canned once the band started selling albums and at the end of the tour everyone  realised they were $1.2 Million in debt.  VH also learned quickly that all the dressing rooms that you destroy and all the limo rides/paying the road crew etc comes out  of your pocket at the end of the day. The fact that Berle had Halen sign a crappy record deal also didn’t help his cause. Berle got tossed and hooked up with another L.A act and that would be RATT.

Cool to read that there first ever tour was playing third on a bill with Journey and Montrose. Van Halen and Monk figured it out pretty quick that they were selling a ton of tickets yet playing third on the bill which meant for Halen small dressing room/small stage space/hardly any soundchecks yet the debut Halen went Gold in 3 months so Monk and Crew would throw huge backstage parties while Journey and Montrose would be playing their show much to the chagrin of Journeys management.

Basically Halen didn’t give a Fuck about anything back than. Noel writes that the camaraderie between the band members was the best as it was the “Us against everyone” philosophy. Over time he writes to no one’s  surprise  that evaporated!

If anyone out there ever meets Steve Perry ask him if he likes guacamole!

So Monk begins his tenure as the Captain of the S.S Halen. It’s amazing he didn’t totally lose his own marbles keeping this boat afloat but at the end of the day Ed and Alex made Noel walk the plank.

Course the book is filled with ton of stories and that’s  what we want right?!

Drugs and Alcohol  which to no ones surprise is featured predominately throughout. It’s all here Weed/Coke/Booze these dudes were wired tighter than a top but they all had one goal in common and that was World Domination.

Everything is over the top back than especially when Lead Singer David Lee Roth was taking over (back in the early 80’s ) as the best front-man in Rock. Not vocally perse but with the acrobatics that was part of his stage routine. Offstage though was a whole other story. One of the interesting reads  of the book is in regards to how they travelled early on. Halen would fly commercial flights from city to city and it was Monk’s job to get the troops down to the lobby to catch their flights. The last one always to show up was Dave. Monk for a while thought Roth was being an ass as he wouldn’t pack, his hotel room would be a disaster and Monk would have to get Dave to the lobby where the rest of Halen would be continuously pissed at Dave for taking his time.

After a few flights this way Monk realised that Roth was afraid of flying as a Monk points out Roth always wanted to be in charge of everything. Sitting on an air plane Roth had no control.

Everyone knows that by 1981’s Fair Warning album there was tensions between Roth and the Brothers. Monk points out it started back in 1980  during the recording of Woman & Children First.

Monk writes that indeed a “Musical Rift” was starting to happen between Ed and Dave(SHOCKER!) back in 1980 when  problems started…

Monk goes into detail about the music business as well. When VH was about to release  VH 2 in 1979 he was called into the Billboard offices and was told by a high-ranking official where they would like the soon to be released album debut on the charts. Monk states he was stunned as he was told they could come in the Top 10 if they chose to. Monk was quick to say how about the mid forties so it would look like the album was rising instead of debuting high and sliding down the charts. Payback for the chart debut would be made by VH in Billboard….

How about some Payola? Yep, Noel writes in  great detail about when 1981’s Fair Warning went to gold record status and stalled in sales (there were no real “single like” tracks on the guitar heavy Fair Warning record) VH/Monk were freaking out so as Monk got summoned to Warner Brother records, someone told him on the side if they wanted Fair Warning to start selling than VH would have to cough up $200,000 of their own money and pay certain stations across the States $5000 each to get the album played at which VH did, not happily mind you but it worked and Fair Warning went Double Platinum.

Early 1982 Warner Brothers is begging for Halen product. VH has nothing new to offer so they record Pretty Woman and the single takes off which no one thought it would as Pretty Woman was released just to keep the Halen name out in the public. This is why 82’s Diver Down was half covers/half originals as it was recorded in about 3 weeks and rushed out due to the  single shooting up the charts!

These kind of stories actually fascinate me more for as we all know the Party Deal of VH.(  I still like to read about Krell Wars that Roth/Ed would indulge in )

Monk describes throughout the book the chaos that surrounded this band from 1978-85 when Noel’s 30 day contract was not renewed. Yup! You read that right for the 7 years he worked for VH they would only renew his contract every 30 days….

This is a great read into a band that basically was a” Professional Shit Show”. I’m amazed they could record/tour at a clip for that time and not actually kill each other.

1984 the mega album from VH you would think they would be on top of the world with album sales and tickets sold right? Wrong-o! Years of frustration with everyone come to a boil when Roth announces to everyone his cover E.P.

I will leave it at that!

I could go on with a boatload of stories(Roth being forced into a straight jacket being one) but the one common dominator being that we all know is that ex VH Bassist Michael Anthony is indeed the nicest guy in Rock.  Yes he is by all accounts and Monk confirms many a time over how great a guy Mikey is. No smut on him in this book whatsover…

Below is what Roth/Ed and Alex wanted  Anthony to  sign ….. Nice way to treat a bandmate eh?

This a fascinating read. Get This!

The Tape Remains The Same: (Circa 1984)

 

unknown-4Mikey Ladano over at his Fantastic site covers a ton of stuff musically and he’s a great reviewer who at times dabbles in Movie Reviews but also  writes about his past which he has called Getting More Tale. 

Mikes one post titled #519: Mistakes I Made Fixing Broken Tapes totally brought back the time that my good pal of over 40 years Tbone bought the first 5 David Lee Roth fronted Van Halen releases  on cassette tape sealed for just under $20 back in 1984…

Lemme tell ya about…..

Too make a long story even longer ….January 1984 I lent Tbone my vinyl copy of VH’s 1984.  This was Tbones first Dabble with Halen and he liked what he heard! So much so he quickly purchased a copy  of 1984 for himself!

It wasn’t too much long after that T got the Halen Itch so one day over lunch at school he told me “I’m going to buy all the Halen albums TODAY!”

Whut? …

So after lunch we split from High School and off we headed to our local Shopping Mall which was and still is called Intercity. We parked and headed into Sears to cut over to the mall and head into A&A Records  so Tbone could drop some cash on Dave Halen!

But before and If Tbone’s good luck couldn’t get any better we came across two Bins stuffed with Cassette  Tapes  One Bin had basically a bunch of shit tapes marked for $2.99. The only one worth mentioning Ironically was an  Sammy Hagar Greatest Hits Tape called Cruisin And Boozin.  The next Bin was stuffed with a bunch of $9.99 cassette tapes (current rock at the time)like AC/DC /Def Leppard/Quiet Riot and bands of that ilk. The big score in the $9.99 Bin was that there was the first 5 Van Halen tapes sitting there waiting for Tbones hands to grab them up!

Tbone paused for a second took a look around and told me to watch for Sears staff sniffing around the area we were in.  Basically I was on “Watch” Duty. Alert T of any incoming Sears Staff  headed our way!

Next thing you know Tbone digs into the Cheapie Bin’s and pulls out a handful of Crap tapes all priced $2.99 and manage’s  to peel off  the stickers (quicker than a Monkey peeling a banana) and transfer them to the other bin where the Halen Tapes were all marked $9.99 and T than proceeded to place the $2.99 stickers over the $9.99 Stickers that were the VH cassette’s.

What a friggin Genius move before my eyes! TBone did this to all the Halen Tapes …

Let’s calculate this….(tax not included)

Full Price for 5 Van Halen Tapes at Sears back in 1984- $49.95

TBone’s Discount  Sticker Removal Times for 5 Van Halen Tapes in 1984-$14.95

Tbone even bought Hagars Tape for the actual price of $2.99..(Big Spender!)

Tbone spent $17.94! A savings of $34.96….for 6  sealed Cassette Tapes…..

Son of a Beeatch! I quickly did the Math on the Halen purchases and I DID pay at least $9.99 each for those Halen albums on Vinyl…..

In other words….

Deke’s 6 Van Halen albums on vinyl back in the early 80’s.  $9.99 Times 6=$59.94….

Tbone was like a Giddy Pig In Shit that Day and we blew off the afternoon classes and drove all over Tbay that afternoon and everyone heard Hang Em High blaring from Tbones car whether they wanted to hear it or  not!

 

 

HardLine/Double Eclipse(1992)

Let’s be honest here people I have hammered on this blog about  Neil Schon pretty hard for back in the day(1980s) Neil would always pump every Journey album as “Lot’s Of Guitar Rock”…Ummm Ok Fella but when I read that and went and bought Journey’s 1986’s Raised On Radio his guitar was so buried under Jon Cain’s Keyboards that I Raised My Hands and Gave Up!

Of course Schon took his trade and moved onto Bad English and Man don’t get me started on those Yahoo’s of Power Syrup Rock. Bad English to this day still haunt Tbone as Moi and Tbones Brothers will still take the occasional jab at him for this 1989 Purchase! If you look on the site here I reviewed the debut Bad English under the 3/4’s Filler Section…….

Well 1992 roll’s around and I read in I think it was Metal Edge Magazine that Neil Schon was back with a couple of Bro’s in a new band called HardLine and once again Schon was going on about how heavy the guitar was sounding and once again Deke drank from the Schon Kool Aide cup and …..

HOLLLLLEEEEEE Sheeeeeeeeeit! Schon did not lie! His guitar is jacked to the masses and here’s Ol Neil ramping up some heavy guitar in the  year of 1992 with all things Grunge going on musically. It  took all of 8 years to get his heavy guitar Rock n Roll Ball’s after that great H.S.A.S album he did with Sam Hagar back in 1984. Welcome Back ….

All songs written by Neal Schon, Johnny Gioeli and Joey Gioeli except where noted.

“Life’s a Bitch” – 4:22
“Dr. Love” (Mark Baker, Brian Connors, Mike Slamer) – 5:31
“Love Leads the Way”- 4:04 (bonus track for Japanese release of the album only)
“Rhythm from a Red Car” – 3:40
“Change of Heart” – 4:42
“Everything” (Schon, Gioeli, Gioeli, Eddie Money, Jonathan Cain, Tony Marty, Mark Tanner) – 3:55
“Takin’ Me Down” – 3:34
“Hot Cherie” (Randy Bishop, Daryl Gutheil, Jeffrey Neill, Kenneth Shields, Kenneth Sinnaeve) – 4:47
“Bad Taste” – 4:23
“Can’t Find My Way” – 5:28
“I’ll Be There” (Schon, Gioeli, Gioeli, Cain) – 4:36
“31-91” (Schon) – 1:33
“In the Hands of Time” – 6:18

Band members
Johnny Gioeli – lead vocals, acoustic guitar, rhythm guitar, percussion
Neal Schon – lead guitar, rhythm guitar, catgut guitar, guitar synthesizer, backing vocals, producer
Joey Gioeli – rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Todd Jensen – bass, backing vocals
Deen Castronovo – drums, backing vocals

Double Eclipse is a real good no make that a pretty great album of Hard yet Melodic at times Rock that doesn’t even border on wimpy even with Jon Cain creeping on co writes on two tracks!

The album gets off to the get go with Life’s A Bitch( with Schons guitar tone sounding Heavvvvy) and Dr Love. Sure there are underlying sounds of the synth going on but first and foremost this is a Guitar Record! Plus the vocals of Johnny Gioeli  are tailor made for this kind of music! Dude has a good set of pipes and the performances of the other Cat’s on this record is excellent.

Below posted is a Radio Broadcast of these guys playing Dr Love. Great stuff…Schon plays some super duper lightening bolts of lick’s at the beginning of the track. Love the chorus so simple yet so Friggin catchy!

Rhythm From A Red Car is for my money down the best song on this album! Listen to Schon Folk’s he smokes the frets on this tune (blast the video posted)and even at the 2 minute 40 second mark or so he inner channels his best Angus Young and Jeeper’s Creeper’s now we are talking!

For all us Canucks out there Hardline cover StreetHeart’s Hot Cherie and there’s a fine mix of good hard (Takin Me Down/Bad Taste) with some not so hard rock but still good nevertheless(Everything and especially album closer In The Hands Of Time)

The musical climate at the time wasn’t kind to this album even though they got on as support for Van Halen’s Carnal Knowledge Tour(1992) still though an uphill struggle for all these guy’s and a few years later OL Neil took his guitar and hooked up with the reunited Journey and Neil’s guitar vanished into the Fog Of AOR Rock!

But for a brief time …….

Cool Vs Gah! Round 4….Van Halen..

One I Want Vs How Many Say I

I’m not going to go down the whole Lead Singer debacle in regards to VH as I have written about it countless times so just search under David Lee Roth/Van Halen/Sammy Hagar and my diabolical writings in this matter will rear its ugly head. Actually I wrote something called L.S.D a few months back about bands flipping out singers at such at a speed that’s quicker than Tbone flipping  Finnish Pancakes!

What i’m gonna ramble on about are two tracks from VH3 that featured new vocalist Gary Cherone( Extreme) and for all intent and purposes tanked quicker down the toilet than me chugging  down a bottle of Silent Sam Vodka from way back into a toilet!

VH Mach 3….Featuring…

Eddie Van Halen – guitar, keyboards, backing vocals
Alex Van Halen – drums, percussion
Michael Anthony – bass, backing vocals
Gary Cherone – lead vocals

I think its safe too say when looking at the band members that you can tack on’ Bass’ beside EVH’s name! By that point Anthony was just there…

The production angle is ludicrous as Mike Post (yeah exactly) a guy who had provided the music for the 80s Tv Show Hill Street Blues was brought onboard to co produce with Eddie…

Whut Da Fuk Is Going On Here?

VH3 had some decent stuff on it.

One I Want is a decent track. I dig the flip-flop of backing vocals to lead vocals and that little solo Ed blasts off at the end of the first verse. I posted the live track of this and VH3 cuts across real good live but man look at Alex behind the kit! Dudes all banged up from the shoulders up. Was he going for an Iron Maiden Powerslave look? Dunno but still this is Good VH….Not Great VH….But Good…

Which leads us to the last song on VH3…

How Many Say I is a Ed only piece with  him at the piano doing his singing as well sounding like Tom Waits and basically man this one was a tough  slog through…

At over 6 minutes worth of noodling I realized back in 1998 that this was indeed a EVH solo album from the production down to the Bass playing  to Ed singing lead on a track….

Whose gonna tell Ed no?  New Boy Cherone? Nope…Anthony..Brother Alex..Nope…Mike Post?..Hahaha..

The real clincher was my wife Sue at the time when I put on 3 in our living room and was playing it for perhaps the first time commented to me  when How Many Say I came on with a  “What Is This?”

Exactly Sue Exactly…..