Saturday, March 04, 2006

Poison-Look what the cat dragged in

Background-
My twenty year old album review for March is the result of a vote that was held not too long ago so you voted for me to review this. Unless of course you voted for Ratt's Dancing Undercover then you voted for a cd that lost although it was a close vote. In late May I will probably hold a vote for what my July review will be. Back to Poison, these guys started in central Pennsylvania, but realized they needed to go to a bigger place if they wanted to make it so they packed up their gear and headed out to LA in 1984. The LA scene was booming at this time and numerous former club bands like Motley Crue, Ratt and WASP had gotten major label deals and were out touring the nation. Poison played the clubs and eventually got signed. I think there were some delays with this release of their debut, but it came out and it was a hit. They toured opening for David Lee Roth and they opened the Texas Jam that year which was headlined by Aerosmith and Boston.

Initial reaction-I avoided hearing this album for a few months just because I figured they would be lame, but by the fall I decided to give it a try. I thought it was decent because it was fun and enjoyable enough. It wasn't breaking down any walls, but it was good for a listen if you were in the mood for some bubblegum.


1. Cry Tough- A little more serious tone that I would expect as the opener from a glam band. However I think it works as Bret Michaels vocals come across very strong.
2. I Want Action- Sort of an anthem type song. It's light, but has a good even flow to it. The music is very basic, but the vocals are memorable enough.
3. I Won't Forget You-A simple ballad that although not outstanding is not sickening either. Alright for a change pace, but really just an okay song. It might overstay it's welcome just a little.
4. Play Dirty- This song sounds like the band trying to show they are sort of tough. Which would have to a be a difficult thing to do for men wearing piles of make-up. It's decent but not far from outstanding. One of a number of songs here where you remember the vocals, but not the music.
5. Look What The Cat Dragged In-The title track comes on and it is both fun and a solid basic rock song as well. It brings the album back on track by showing that the band still has some life in them and they seem very much into this song.
6. Talk Dirty To Me- A bit of a one-two punch here as they follow up the good title track with their big hit. Not just a hit but a somewhat rockin hit. Yes, it's about as complicated as 'Louie, Louie', but so what, it's fun and smooth.
7. Want Some, Need Some-A bit of a filler as it's probably the least memorable track so far. Not bad, but it just feels like a track that was added to get the total up to ten tracks.
8. Blame It On You-Another filler track and even Bret Michaels doesn't seem to excited about this song.
9. #1 Bad Boy-The bookend to Play Dirty as it's not track where the band is trying to act tough. Not quite as good as Play Dirty, but it's alright.
10. Let Me Go To The Show- This is a basic track, but faster than the rest of the album. I like it because it's basic and fun and that's where Poison tend to have their most success. Tracks like this one, the title track and Talk dirty to me just go without trying to do too much and they work.

Verdict/final word-I am very much of the opinion that Poison had let's say a lot of extra hands helping this album. That's not a judgment, but an observation based on what I think the skills of these individuals were. Having said that, I still think this is a fun album that stands the test of time reasonably well. It's not groundbreaking, but I think a fun hard rock album was needed at the time. There were a number of bands that took themselves too seriously. Poison were a little like Kiss in the 70's in that they were not the greatest musicians, but they made rock music that was fun and enjoyable and that goes along. When I listened to this album this time around, there were times when it reminded me of Motley Crue's Theater of pain. Although I would say Poison's album stands the test of time better than Theater of pain just because Poison didn't try to do too much or take it too seriously. I think this album did have a big and immediate impact on other glam bands. Poison are candy rock, but they could be good candy rock and there is nothing wrong with that.

The 20 year old album review for April will be Queensryche's Rage for order. The 20 year old album review for May will be Iron Maiden's Somewhere in time and it will probably be part of Iron Maiden week as I will attempt my first theme week dedicated to individual band.

5 Comments:

Blogger :P fuzzbox said...

Damn the chicks on the album cover are ugly. Except for that one.

At least that is what I said when I saw the cover before giving it a listen.

I'm not gay or anything but I am a man that sticks to his word. He's one purty motherfucker.

And their music rocks. Like you called it its just candy rock, but sometimes you get a sweet tooth.

2:47 PM  
Blogger Ranea said...

I love Talk dirty to me. It's my fav on that album. Brett Michaels is hot!:)

6:02 PM  
Blogger David Amulet said...

Nice review. I have a love/hate thing with Poison, so it's always been a tough one for me. But your review puts in all in perspective.

I am SO looking forward to your week of Maiden reviews in May. Very ambitious, Mark!

-- david

1:41 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Fuzzbox-I still like this album well enough.
Ranea-Bret Michaels has aged better than the rest of the band anyway.
David-Right now I think Iron Maiden week will consist of reviews of Somewhere in Time, Brave New World, Killers and a countdown of the top 20 Iron Maiden songs that will probably be done in two parts. If it goes well then I may do a week Black Sabbath in October.

5:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Talk dirty is a great tune, while poison will never be considered serious, they are a good time band, not many other bands are still pulling crowds like they are these days

4:04 AM  

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