Album Recommendations: DIRTY LOOKS – TURN OF THE SCREW (1989)

(by Velina of “My Rock Mixtapes”)

Before we get down to business, here’s a song to check out! If you love the late ’80s as much as I do and you’re into hard rock music, you will most certainly like it and won’t hesitate to go down and read/check out the following album I’m recommending this week (in case you haven’t done it yet, of course – if you are familiar with it, then it’s time for you to go down memory lane)…

 “Nobody Rides for Free”

I’ve told you before – 1989 was indeed a magical year for rock music and gems like this one are the reason why! I can’t stress this enough – you wanna get drunk on authentic hard rock music, just look for 1989 ’cause that’s your year!! (check out my previous blog publication where I list 15 favorite 1989 rock releases)

DIRTY LOOKS - TURN OF THE SCREW (1989)Let’s go back to Dirty Looks and focus on their intoxicating second major-label studio album, “Turn of The Screw”. What you need to know about the band in case that’s the first time they are crossing your path is that their major-label debut was in 1988 with what is often regarded to as one of the best hard rock debuts of all time – “Cool From the Wire”. Danish born vocalist Henrik Ostergaard was the man behind it all. The voice, the attitude, that street vibe, coming out of the band and this album in particular was mainly brought by him. Unfortunately, we had to say goodbye to that raspy, quite distinguishable voice in 2011 (RIP). 

“Turn of the Screw” might not present an entirely different formula for a hard rock release. Given the time, the ambitions and the trends, Dirty Looks just had to take on that well-established hard rock road so don’t expect a sound you’ve never heard before. What you can expect, though, is a rough, solid and highly motivating gem that in my opinion deserved way more than it actually got. They did just put another brick on the enormous hard rock wall, but if you pay enough attention and devote some time into investigating 1989 album by album, you will see that that brick had its own colors and charms, worthy of your attention.

Ultimately, if you love bands like Kix, Great White, Cinderella, etc. you will love this album. “Turn of the Screw” is what introduced me to the band some time ago and It was love at first listen. “Nobody Rides for Free”, “Turn of the Screw”, “Take What Ya Get” and that special special song “L.A. Anna” which is my favorite cut from this release are as good as any other hard rock tune from the era. Atlantic Records yet again delivered something valuable to my collection so I can’t but thank them for that. The album has a little bit of those blues vibes I adore so much here and there so that’s one thing that might attract you even more. 

Now go ahead and listen! Make sure you tell me what you think of the album and which is your favorite song!!

“Turn of the Screw”

“C’mon Frenchie”

Here’s the entire album on YouTube for you to check out. It’s worth it, I promise!


References:
P.S. I don’t own any audio or visual material used in this publication. All the rights and credits go to the owners and/publishers.
The publication expresses my personal opinion and in no way is trying to make a generalized statement. Please be kind and considerate when you read and/or comment.
Cheers~

Song of the Week: PRIDE OF LIONS – THE TELL

As a huge fan of Jim Peterik – as a matter of fact, he is in my top 5 favorite songwriters of all time, I was immensely excited to find out that Pride of Lions are releasing a new record next month. “Fearless” will be out on the 27th of January 2017, under Frontiers Records and it will be their seventh album, following “Immortal” (2012).

Just for a second there I thought that there was nothing exciting coming out next year! Not only that but, 2017 will start with a blast (at least for me). “The Tell” was released last week (29.11.2016) on YouTube and I haven’t stopped listening to this gorgeous tune ever since. It’s my choice for “song of the week” because I think it truly deserves it! I hope the rest of the album is going to be as intriguing as this tune. Haunting lyrics about a woman who is giving off signals she’s not really aware of, (I already know it by heart), A-level vocals and very pleasing instrumentation – this track was everything I’ve wished for!

Have a listen!



P.S. I don’t own any audio or visual material used in this publication. All the rights and credits go to the owners and/publishers.

The publication expresses my personal opinion and in no way is trying to make a generalized statement. Please be kind and considerate when you read and/or comment.
Cheers~

Song Of The Day : DURAN DURAN – NOTORIOUS

duran-duran-notoriousTime to funk things up ‘80s style!

There is not even a single thing I don’t like about Dura Duran! What is there not to like? – Great musicians, brilliant songwriters, hardworking, charismatic and the list goes on and on! They are definitely one of the most iconic bands of the ‘80s – if not THE band of the ‘80s! Leading the second wave of British Invasion, the fab five quickly found a way to the hearts of fans from all over the world. At the peak of their career, they broke into two separate units – Arcadia and Power Station which unfortunately shook their strength as a unit. “Notorious” was their 1986 comeback album but this time, they were a three-piece band – Simon Le Bon, John Laylor and Nick Rhodes. The title track won them top 10 positions in both the UK and the USA and topped the charts in Italy and Canada, even. There was no way this track wouldn’t make it big – legendary producer Nile Rodgers was part of the team, after all; he even played lead guitar!  

Funky, energetic, fresh, dynamic…this tune has always been in my top 5 favorite Duran Duran songs of all time! I got reminded of their outstanding musicianship today so I immediately played this tune and listened to the whole flawless album! This is my choice for “song of the day” and I really hope I reminded you of this lovely tune that just makes you jump off your chair and start dancing like nobody’s watching! Enjoy and make sure you check out the glorious live performances below the MV!

MV

LIVE (1986)

LIVE (2015)

“Notorious” Lyrics

No-no-Notorious. Notorious. Ah. No-no-Notorious.

I can’t read about it.
Burns the skin from your eyes.
I’ll do fine without it.
Here’s one you don’t compromise.
Lies come hard in disguise.
They need to fight it out.
Not wild about it.
Lay your seedy judgements.
Who says they’re part of our lives? [CHORUS]
You own the money ;
You control the witness.
I’ll leave you lonely.
Don’t monkey with my business.
You pay the prophets to justify your reasons.
I heard your promise,but I don’t believe it.

That’s why I’ve done it again. No-no-Notorious.

Girls will keep the secrets (uh)
So long as boys make a noise.
Fools run rings to break up.
Something they’ll never destroy.
Grand Notorious slam (bam).
And who really gives a damn for a flaky bandit?
Don’t ask me to bleed about it;
I need this blood to survive.

[CHORUS]

That’s why I’ve done it again. No-no-Notorious.

[CHORUS]

[CHORUS]

That’s why I’ve done it again. No. No.
That’s why I’ve done it again. No-no-Notorious.
That’s why I’ve done it again. No-no-Notorious.
No-no-Notorious. Yeah.
That’s why I’ve done it again. No-no-Notorious.
No-no-Notorious. Yeah.
That’s why I’ve done it again. No-no-Notorious.
No-no-Notorious.


“Notorious” Lyrics, retrieved from: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/duranduran/notorious.html
P.S. I don’t own any audio or visual material used in this publication. All the rights and credits go to the owners and/publishers.
The publication expresses my personal opinion and in no way is trying to make a generalized statement. Please be kind and considerate when you read and/or comment.
Cheers~

The Story of “ALPHA” – A Second Date with ASIA

asia-alphaASIA debuted in 1982 with a monstrous self-titled album which not only celebrated the perfect music partnership of legends Steve Howe, Carl Palmer, Geoff Downes and John Wetton but also became one of the essential AOR albums that ruled the 80s. With radio-friendly classics like “Heat of the Moment”, “Sole Survivor” and “Time Again”, the album was destined for commercial success. Coming up with an equally deserving follow-up album was always going to be quite the formidable task. One year later, however, ASIA released a worthy sophomore album, titled “Alpha”, which in its own way became a valuable ‘80s classic. Unfortunately, this turned out to be the last album with the band’s original line up as guitarist Steve Howe left one year after its release. There have been some reunions here and there, but the momentum was long lost.

The second date with ASIA was definitely less tense and more familiar, more sensitive even. Producer Mike Stone was once again on board with the rest of the team, crafting a quality collection of charming pop/rock tunes. All of the songs are credited to the songwriting collaboration of John Wetton and Geoff Downes, exceptThe Smile Has Left Your Eyes”, written by Wetton alone. Juxtaposing “Alpha” to its predecessor is inevitable. In terms of sound, ASIA’s second album is less progressive and more mellow, pop oriented, fuelled up with excellent hooks and delightfully attractive choruses. Melodically-empowered and well-seasoned with pleasing keyboard work and sleek multi-layered harmonies, “Alpha” definitely captures a type of progressive rock, that could almost effortlessly be digested by the audience of the ‘80s.  

Many experts claim that the debut album is the most important album of a musician’s career – after all, you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. We have so many examples of ground-breaking debut album which sky-rocketed the careers of bands like Guns N’ Roses, Bad Company, King Crimson, Boston, Rainbow, etc. Because of its novelty, huge impact and quality of production, ASIA’s debut album certainly falls under the category of “the greatest rock debuts of all time. “Alpha”, however, didn’t have that novelty factor anymore, nor could it compete in terms of quality of production. “Alpha” also couldn’t meet the industry’s expectation and despite its platinum status, critics often refer to it as somewhat a failure. Sadly, this album turned into one of the most underrated ‘80s rock records of all time, despite the wonderful playlist it offers. If one should chose to ignore all that was said and written about this album and for a second forgets about the enormous sonic force of their debut album, “Alpha” could become a truly pleasant experience. Someone once said that “Asia‘s first album is like Saturday night while the sophomore is more like a Sunday afternoon” which entirely supports my claim – “Alpha” may not be as strong or as important as “Asia” but it still holds a place in our heart.

Cracks were slowly starting to appear, but once you hear songs such as “Don’t Cry”, “The Smile Has Left Your Eyes” or The Beach Boys sounding “Open Your Eyes”, it will all be forgiven. There are great and good songs on this record, but the level doesn’t go below that. The album is a festival of romance, under a sky of gorgeous lyrics and touching music. I often referred to “The Smile Has Left Your Eyes” as one of the most beautifully written ballads of all time, despite its weak production. This stunning song deserved so much more. A Phil Spector/Wall of Sound treatment, including horn sections and enhanced piano sounds would’ve done some justice to it. “Don’t Cry” is a personal favorite, mainly due to the dreamy lyrics which every girl secretly wants to hear from a guy: So leave it all behind you, It took so long to find you, I know that we can last forever, ever and more…”. “The Heat Goes On” is another fine moment which should’ve been awarded with more attention; an atmospheric classic rock tune with so much energy, it surely deserves a listen or two.

I’m not gonna go into detail about each and every tune of “Alpha” – you can listen to the whole album below the publication. What I would like to emphasize on is that even though is not as strong as their debut album, it still carries valuable characteristics that makes it a great ‘80s rock record. Symphonic sound, sensitive lyrics and stirring harmonies are just a few of its valuable qualities. ASIA would disappear for two years before they released “Astra” in 1985. The first three albums, in my opinion, perfectly represent their glory days. Whichever one of those albums you pick, you won’t make a mistake. I am somewhat biased and “Alpha” will forever remain my favorite ASIA album mostly because of a few tracks I hold very close to my heart and of course, that marvellous Roger Dean cover. That’s the beauty of music, isn’t it – it has to offer something to everyone. Listen to those outstanding tracks and let’s appreciate such long gone musicianship!

 

Listen to ASIA’s “Alpha” here:

Don’t Cry

The Smile Has Left Your Eyes

 


 

P.S. I don’t own any audio or visual material used in this publication. All the rights and credits go to the owners and/publishers.
The publication expresses my personal opinion and in no way is trying to make a generalized statement. Please be kind and considerate when you read and/or comment.
Cheers~

The Story of CINDERELLA’s – Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)

I bet each and every one of my readers remember the time they heard a favorite song for the very first time. You feel this instant connection, your heart fills up with so much energy, so much passion; emotions are flying everywhere; you cannot explain it – you can only feel it. I remember when I heard Cinderella’s “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” for the first time. Gladly, I was old enough to actually appreciate and understand the true brilliancy of the song. Yes, I do believe that in some cases when it comes to music or songs, age and experience are very important. It quickly became an absolute favorite 80s song and in my top 10 greatest power-ballads of all time (and believe me, that’s a very huge accomplishment given in mind the fact that power-ballads are MY thing and I’m very critical).

cinderella-80sCinderella are actually one of the few truly talented glam rockers of the 80s. Among the endless river of hairspray, leather and leopard prints, Cinderella managed to stood out and prove that image isn’t everything when it comes to being in the industry. With time, their popularity declined and the band quickly faded away but they didn’t disappear without leaving a few prints and a trace of timeless rockers still remembered and played till today. “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” is one of those classics which I believe will always find a place among our playlists; a song that deserves so much more recognition than it got! Let’s appreciate it together!

 


 – “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” was written by singer-songwriter and co-founder of Cinderella, Tom Keifer. The track was released as a single from their second album “Long Cold Winter” (1988). Up to date, it’s their highest charting single and most successful track! It was also pretty popular on MTV as it received heavy rotation in the late 80s.

– Back in the day, the companies would invest huge budgets for music videos, so naturally, Mercury shelled out the big bucks and the results were in. The video of “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” was filmed at Mono Lake’s Bodie National Park in California. Tom Keifer playing on a grand piano on the beach was a very difficult scene to shoot but it also became one of the most iconic and beautiful images of the era.

-“Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” impresses with its intensity and variety of emotions it offers to its listeners. Compared to other glam rock bands of the era, Cinderella were actually pretty good songwriters and knew how to craft something meaningful and lasting. The vocal delivery is superb and this is coming from a person who doesn’t really like such scratchy, high-pitched male voices. Tom, however, he completely blew me away! He’s the only exception.

– In terms of lyrics, once again as I said, “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” is such a fine example of how powerful a song can be and how easily it could play on your emotional strings. So sincere, so relatable, so genuine – a perfect ballad. We have all been there, each one of us. This song can easily become a soundtrack to the end of a love story – a painful reminder of how we have to cherish and appreciate what we have because one day, it might be long gone. Sometimes in life, we do or say things we don’t realize that may hurt the other. One day, we wake up and the world is not the same. We don’t know what went wrong and we don’t know what to do or who’s to blame…All we know is that we lost something that meant a lot to us and all we have is…”just this song”.

Check out this live performance of “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)”

 

“Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” Lyrics

I can’t tell ya baby what went wrong
I can’t make you feel what you felt
So long ago, I’ll let it show
I can’t give you back what’s been hurt
Heartaches come and go and all that’s
left are the words I can’t let go
If we take some time to think it over baby
Take some time let me know
If you really wanna go Don’t know what you got till it’s gone
Don’t know what it is I did so wrong
Now I know what I got
It’s just this song
And it ain’t easy to get back
Takes so long

I can’t feel the things that cause you pain
I can’t clear my heart of your love
It falls like rain, ain’t the same
I hear you calling far away
Tearing through my soul I just can’t
Take another day, Who’s to blame
If we take some time to think it over baby
Take some time let me know
If you really wanna go

Don’t know what you got till it’s gone
Don’t know what it is I did so wrong
Now I know what I got
It’s just this song
And it ain’t easy to get back
Takes so long

Do you wanna see me beggin’ baby
Can’t you give me just one more day
Can’t you see my heart’s been draggin’ lately
I’ve been lookin’ for the words to say

Don’t know what you got till it’s gone
Don’t know what it is I did so wrong
Now I know what I got
It’s just this song
And it ain’t easy to get back
Takes so long


 

 References:
“Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” Official Wikipedia Page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don%27t_Know_What_You_Got_(Till_It%27s_Gone)
P.S. I don’t own any audio or visual material used in this publication. All the rights and credits go to the owners and/publishers.
The publication expresses my personal opinion and in no way is trying to make a generalized statement. Please be kind and considerate when you read and/or comment.
Cheers~

The Story of ROXETTE’s “IT MUST HAVE BEEN LOVE”

“It Must Have Been Love” is EVERYONE’s favorite song and one of the most sensual, beautiful and memorable tunes that came out during the 80s (and then again in 1990). Not to mention that this is probably one of those timeless tracks that will never disappear from the airplay – it’s just the ultimate radio song! The Swedish pop/rock duo Roxette already had a few number one hits in the States before this song but it was “It Must Have Been Love” that cemented their position as the most beloved European duo of all time! As a person who comes from Europe I can definitely state that Marie and Per were and still are pretty big over here!! Europeans just adore them! Getting back to the song, I wanted to say a few words about it because regardless of how mainstream or commercial it became (mainly due to the fact that it became a soundtrack to the all-time-favorite American movie “Pretty Woman”), this song means a lot to me as I literally grew up listening to it. In addition to that, the lyrics remind me of someone and as painful as it is to listen to this tune, it’s also bringing me back to those days when I was a little innocent girl and had no idea how hard and hurtful love can be…

roxette-it-must-have-been-love

– “It Must Have Been Love” was written by Per Gessle – the main songwriter of Roxette and was released in 1987. Nothing major happened for the track before it was re-recorded and released on the soundtrack of “Pretty Woman” in 1990.

– The original tile of the song was “It Must Have Been Love (Christmas For The Broken Hearted)” and came out in 1987 as a Christmas single! The song also had a Christmas reference in the lyrics: “and it’s a hard Christmas day” which later on changed into “and it’s a hard winter’s day” when they recorded it for “Pretty Woman”.

“It Must Have Been Love (Christmas For The Broken Hearted)” VIDEO

– After the enormous success of “Pretty Woman”, the track conquered all the charts and was simply everywhere! It made almost half a billion dollars worldwide and not to mention that in 2014, Per got an award from BMI for the track’s five millionth radio play! The soundtrack of the movie also went on to be certified three times platinum by the RIAA!! To sum up, you must have it!

pretty-woman

– Let’s talk about the touching but painful lyrics… It’s a beautiful song to listen to, till the day you finally experience the story told in those words and believe me, the majority of people have experienced it (including myself)…And then, you realize that you should have fought harder and should’ve never let this person you loved walk away from you. This song is about regret – regret over the fact that somehow, you lost your love and now you are lonely, your heart is cold and you don’t know what to do… You wish for him/her to return back to you but it’s too late – all you can do is dream about those beautiful days. Life is just too cruel! (…and there we go, the tears are coming…)

“It Must Have Been Love” MUSIC VIDEO

…and this beautiful live performance I would like you guys to watch!

“It Must Have Been Love” Lyrics

Lay a whisper on my pillow,
Leave the winter on the ground.
I wake up lonely, there’s air of silence
In the bedroom and all around

Touch me now, I close my eyes and dream away.

It must have been love but it’s over now.
It must have been good but I lost it somehow.
It must have been love but it’s over now.
From the moment we touched, ’til the time had run out.

Make-believing we’re together
That I’m sheltered by your heart.
But in and outside I’ve turned to water
Like a teardrop in your palm.

And it’s a hard winter’s day, I dream away.

It must have been love but it’s over now.
It was all that I wanted, now I’m living without.
It must have been love but it’s over now,
It’s where the water flows, it’s where the wind blows.

It must have been love but it’s over now.
It must have been good but I lost it somehow.
It must have been love but it’s over now.
From the moment we touched, ’til the time had run out.

Yeah, it must have been love but it’s over now.
It was all that I wanted, now I’m living without.
It must have been love but it’s over now,
It’s where the water flows, it’s where the wind blows.


 

References:
“It Must Have Been Love” Lyrics, retrieved from http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/roxette/itmusthavebeenlove.html
“It Must Have Been Love” Official Wikipedia Page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/It_Must_Have_Been_Love
P.S. I don’t own any audio or visual material used in this publication. All the rights and credits go to the owners and/publishers.
The publication expresses my personal opinion and in no way is trying to make a generalized statement. Please be kind and considerate when you read and/or comment.
Cheers~

The Ultimate Def Leppard Playlist

Everyone knows how much I LOVE Def Leppard – they are indeed my most favorite rock band of all time. When it comes to their music, influence and importance, not only in the lives of so many fans around the world, but in the history and development of music, they forever remain the ultimate undefeated rockstars. I’ve expressed my enthusiasm, respect and adoration for Def Leppard numerous times before, so I won’t be repeating myself today or bore you with some cliché words about how great, amazing and perfect they are to me… Instead, I decided to prepare a little playlist of 20 songs, which I consider to be Def Leppard’s most admirable and exceptional ones among all the other songs from their catalog. Don’t get me wrong, as a passionate fan it was very difficult for me to choose just 20 – I love and cherish each and every one of their songs. However, recently it came to my attention that many not-die-hard-fans like me are quite unfamiliar with other essential and equally important DL songs, such as for instance “Bringin’ on the Heartbreak” or “Hello America”. Every person who listens to and enjoys rock music, especially from the 80s, has heard of “Pour Some Sugar on Me”, “Photograph” or “Love Bites”. However, I believe that many fans need to be reminded of or hear some other greatly produced and exceptionally-crafted DL songs. Anyhow, I collected all of DL’s masterpieces throughout the years and came up with this playlist – for you guys, and for me as well – I really like making playlists. Of course, needless to say, the selection is quite subjective – but it’s my blog, after all, so I hope I can be excused!

Enjoy the playlist!