Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Hair metal hodge podge

So the rules on this are I have these bags of hair metal discs and I reach in without looking, pull out two, listen to them and give some mini-reflections on them. After all it's hair metal they don't deserve that much time. It's not like 90% of the bands that did these albums put much thought or effort into their writing or recording. Here we go...

Warrant-Born Again
Curse my hands, I picked a Warrant disc. This disc got some praise back when it came out and that's why I bought it. It was supposed to be heavier and Jaime St James formerly of Black -n- Blue was brought in to replace Janie Lane on vocals. Warrant were terrible on their early albums, one of the worst hair metal acts during the time when lame hair metal bands were all the fashion. They were lame, dull and showed how bad hard rock could be. Now in 1992 they attempted to be heavier with their "Dog eat dog" album. It was a little heavier, but the results were like instead of a pile a poop it was a pile of poop with one rose petal laying on top. Anyways "Born again" was supposed to be heavier than this band had ever been, for whatever that was worth. It an extent. Almost every song started out well, but only a few of them kept the momentum going. Not being heavy was always a problem with this band, but so was the lack of solid songwriting which still plagued this album. Although overall they tried, I hear that and on a few moments they managed to put together some fair pieces. Now on to the vocals. Janie Lane always struck me as a very dull vocalist. I liked Jaime St. James in Black -n- Blue, but here it sounds like his voice is burnt out and fried. The excitement he once had in his voice has been replaced by a dry sound and he's seems to straining to achieve even that level. So the vocal change was not a plus, but the music showed some promise. Yes, this was definitely an improvement for Warrant, but still not an album anyone should run after.

Uzi Suite-s/t
Here are the facts that I know about this album-it has four songs, the band was from Texas, it was recorded in 1990 and issued on CD by Retrospect in 2005. That's it, all I know for sure. No band members are listed on the inlay card, I don't know if it was originally a self-released album or just a demo. However beyond that I do know that is album is pretty darn good. The sound is mid-80's hard rock with a touch of metal (despite being released in 1990) along the lines of early Keel, Dokken and Icon. The vocalist was limited, but got the job done. The guitars are solid and plentiful and the rhythm section was above average  for this style. Even their ballad is solid although it's like a mid-80's ballad and not the shallow sappy ballads that were so big in the late 80's/early 90's. I bought this probably when it came out and liked it, but now it sounds even better to my ears than it did back then. This album was so good it could have made it on our Forgotten Gems segment. Except that I hesitated to do that just because I don't know much about this band. Definitely check this album out if you get a chance and if anyone knows more about them then feel free speak up and enlighten us.

There you go, I'll do another segment of this some time soon.

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Anonymous scott whitt said...

That Warrant CD was atrocious. Never a big fan of Black n Blue, thought their last one was gawd awful. Did you hear the last Warrant CD with Robert Mason? I really liked it, you may not though. Retrospect does a good job on their reissues.

9:14 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Scott-The disc with Robert Mason is alright. They finally realized that it might be a good idea to bring in a good singer for once and it made a difference.

9:23 PM  
Blogger Guitarmike said...

I have to disagree with you on Warrant. The song writing, especially on Cherry Pie and dog eat dog is very good. Uncle Tom's Cabin is an example, it is a well thought out, well executed song. They wrote fun pop songs, I would not call them metal, but a pop band.

3:55 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Guitarmike-Whether you classify Warrant as pop, hair metal, hard rock or whatever the bottom line is they aren't very good. There were far better bands playing this style. Jani Lane wasn't a great singer plus the songs were mostly dull and lame. Hair metal got worse around the late 80's and early 90's. Warrant were certainly one of the worst bands playing that style.

3:48 AM  

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