Blue Murder-s/t, 1989
A little while after getting let go from Whitesnake guitarist John Sykes (also formerly of Tygers of Pan Tang and Thin Lizzy) hooked up with drummer Carmine Appice and bass player Tony Franklin. Franklin had played with the Firm and Appice had been around the block having played with Ozzy, Ted Nugent, King Kobra, Vanilla Fudge, Cactus and Humble Pie. They formed Blue Murder and were signed to Geffen. Sykes, an experienced back-up singer took on lead vocal duties here and he does a decent job. The apple didn't fall far from the tree as there is a good dose of Whitesnake present on this album. Maybe some Dio thrown in there as well at times. Yet there is more as well as the music sometimes has an almost dreamy quality that works. It sounds like each member is really going at it without going overboard. I love the thick, rich production as it certainly sounds like there are more than three guys playing here. I think they mix it up with different paced songs and some variations in style. The album peaked at number 68 on the Billboard charts which is a decent for a debut. Yet they really should have been bigger. I think perhaps it was maybe two years past when it could have been huge. By 1989 the sappy power ballads and thinner commercial hard rock were growing in popularity. Stuff like Blue Murder almost had at least part of a foundation in 1970's hard rock wasn't what people wanted in the late 1980's. However this album holds very well today and that can't be said for everything else that came out in 1989. So this was a Supergoup that actually lived up to their hype.