The Scrounger's Report
Mar. 23, 1999
More CDs??? Oy.
This past weekend/week "been bery bery good to me" in terms
of incoming trade material and dollar bin dumpster diving
(not to mention that I am still expecting fully 25 CDs in
the mail from various trades in the next week or two...*slobber*)
This time I decided to listen to everything first and give a
mini-review and rating for each CD...
Will and the Kill - S/T. 1988.
Nondescript hard rock. Sounded better as I was perusing
the $1 bins than it does now. Kinda bluesy, sleazy
vocals. Rating: 68%
New Eden - Obscure Master Plan. 1998.
The artwork on this one intrigued me, and usually I'm
pretty safe with anything on the Nuclear Blast label.
This is fairly paint-by-numbers power metal, with the
exception that rhythmically it's fairly disjointed.
Overall, pretty boring. Rating: 69%
Linear - S/T. 1990.
Ultrapop dance "stuff." Fluffier than I remembered.
Partland Brothers - Electric Honey. 1986.
80s Europop. Vocals are a little thin at times, but the
choruses are good. Rating: 74%
The Neighborhoods - S/T. 1991.
Bluesy hard rock ala Aerosmith (which is only appropriate,
considering it's produced by Brad Whitford). Rating: 75%
Noiseworks - S/T. 1987.
Poppy AOR from an Aussie ensemble. Fairly melodic stuff.
Decent keys, but fairly nondescript. Rating: 78%
Nazereth - Close Enough for Rock and Roll. 1976.
This is a Castle Communications reissue. It's interesting.
The vocals are a bit coarse, but stylistically it's all
over the place. Rating: 80%
Soundtrack - Less Than Zero. 1987.
There are some interesting tracks on here, most notably
by Aerosmith, Poison, Glenn Danzig and the Power and Fury
Orchestra, and most notably Slayer covering Iron Butterfly's
In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida. Rating: 81%.
Crossroads - The Wild One. 1991.
Melodic Eurometal, accented vocals. Rating: 82%
.38 Special - Bone Against Steel. 1991
Not as memorable as their earlier works, but not bad.
Jailhouse - Alive in a Mad World. 1989.
Did this band only ever put out one album? It's basically
Rough Cutt sans Paul Shortino. Their self-titled CD was
released last year on DeRock records. and it contains all
of the tracks on this EP save one (Please Come Back).
What's the story on this group? Rating: 83%
Brent Bourgeois - S/T. 1990.
Secular album from this CCM artist.
Lite rock. Interesting stuff. Christine McVie and Randy
Jackson guest on the album. Surprisingly good; I get a
subtle blend of Billy Joel and Toto at times. Rating: 84%
Dan Reed Network - S/T. 1988.
Pop-o-funk-o-rockin-jive. AOR riffs at times, but more
a r&b hard rock album (kinda weird). Gets your toes tapping
though. Rating: 84%
Petra - Rock Block. 1995.
I'm a completist when it comes to Petra stuff, and this
is YAGHA (Yet Another Greatest Hits Album), but I still
had to pick it up... Rating: 85%
Sleeze Beez - Live in Tokyo. 1995.
Been looking for this one since forever. Stereotypical
sleaze glam, with some good hard rock moments. They carry
off the live performance well. Rating: 85%
Susie Hatton - Body and Soul. 1991.
Produced by Bret Michaels (Poison)...this is his girlfriend
as a matter of fact. Some good stuff here. Well produced
and arranged. Rating: 86%
Kansas - Audio Visions. 1980.
Is there such a thing as a "bad" Kansas album? I don't
think so. This one has the classic "Hold On". I *will*
eventually own every Kansas CD....Rating: 85%
Starship - No Protection. 1987
You really can't go wrong with any of the 1980s Starship
stuff, and this is no exception. As usual, the best songs
are the ones that Mickey Thomas does lad vox on. Rating: 86%
Jon Butcher - ...Dreamers Would Ride (Best of). 1998
Jon Butcher is one of the most underrated musicians out
there (along with Gary Moore and Kim Mitchell, IMNSHO).
This Greatest Hits compilation contains 17 tracks, including
3 unreleased studio tracks and 1 live track. Rating: 86%
Helstar - Burning Star/Remnants of War. 1992. Reborn Classics.
Yeah, it's a bootleg, but a decent quality one. To my knowledge,
these albums have never been released on CD. Classic mid-
1980s heavy metal; vocals are a bit screechy at times.
Rating: non-Helstar fans: 40%; diehards and collectors: 87%
Petra - Never Say Die/Washes Whiter Than. 1979/1981 (1988).
As a general rule, the sound of "Happy Christians" makes
my teeth itch, and the Greg X Volz-era Petra is far more
happy and poppy and cuddly and fuzzy than the material
produced with John Schlitt at the helm. That being said,
for some reason I really like this early Petra stuff...
not sure exactly why. Rating: 88%
Denaro - S/T. 1992.
This one is a little bizarre. A gem amongst the bargain
been fodder, methinks. The artwork says "glam band", the
opening riffs say Simple Minds or U2 clone, and they do
lean towards a "Don't You Forget About Me"-era Simple
Minds (anyone else think that is a PHENOMENAL song?) sound
at various points, but the choruses are solid AOR. Then
about half way into the album you hit some screaming melodic
metal. Track 3 "Tell Me Why" is a hellacious power ballad.
1927 - The Other Side. 1990.
I snagged this one as trade bait (a) because it was cheap,
but more importantly (b) it's good, solid AOR. Period.
It has some righteous melodic tunes on it. Rating: 88%
Billy Joel - Songs in the Attic. 1981 (1998 reissue).
This live album is a must-have for any Billy Joel fan.
It includes my favorite song of his that never made it
onto his Greatest Hits 2-disc set: "The Ballad of Billy
the Kid." Rating: 89%
Intruder - Dangerous Nights. 1998.
Yeah, they absolutely RIP OFF Survivor's Caught in the
Game, and Fair Warning on one of the later tracks, but
overall I REALLY like this album. Lead singer's vocals
have a timbre very similar to Cher at times....weird.
Petra - More Power To Ya. 1982.
More Greg X. Volz Petra. Quite a bit more rocking. This
one has some real classics on it. Rating: 90%
Slade - Rogues Gallery. 1985.
I had a CDR of this, and when I came across this for a
reasonable price, I *had* to pick it up....not just because
I try to replace all CDRs in my collection with originals
eventually, but because this is a DAMNED good CD! Slade
is one of those melodic rock bands that has never gotten
it's just due, especially here in the states. We were
exposed to "Run, Run Away" back in the heyday of MTV, but
that really wasn't a good representative song for the masses
to be initiated to Slade...the vast majority of their stuff
is *SO* much better. I think this is the next band I'm
going to work on... Rating: 90%
[HINT: this means I'm looking for Slade stuff on CD to
trade for....:) :)]
Harem Scarem - S/T. 1991.
Finally found an original to replace the CDR I had.
Nothing really needs to be said about this one.
Def Leppard - Pyromania. 1983.
IMO, their finest hour. 'Nuff said. Rating: 93%
Dat be it 4 now.