What started off as a side project for Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue, became a full fledged band and lasted 5 studio albums. They started off to only do a soundtrack to Nikki’s autobiography ‘The Heroin Diaries’ and then the rest is history. Sixx A.M. consists of Nikki Sixx, DJ Ashba and James Michael.
It has been hit or miss with me for this band. I either loved it or it was so-so at best. Still, always some great songs on every album and all worth having, some just get played more than others. I have started collecting them on vinyl and there is only one I can’t get and that is ‘This is Gonna Hurt’, so Nikki – get that one out on Vinyl, would you please.
The band is now recording four new songs for a Greatest Hits album. So, until then, let us re-visit their albums and rank them from the best one to the wort one. And let’s get started…
The second album of a double album along with Prayers for the Damned was the final album (so far) by the band and not the best way to end. The power and heaviness of Damned was missing from this album. I guess with the title being Prayers for the Blessed it isn’t as dark as Vol. 1. If you click on the title you can read my review back when it came out. I rated it pretty good and it is, but my least favorite of the bunch.
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It all started for me back in 1990 when I saw Danger Danger open up for Kiss. I was really impressed by their stage performance and the songs. I had to check them out. They were touring in support of their debut, self-titled album which was released in 1989 and I went out and bought it within that week after the show. I have followed their career ever since.
The band has had two lead singers (they had another prior to any album coming out, but doesn’t count for this list and since I am not including the “Rare Cuts” compilation). The first for me was Ted Poley. He is currently the lead singer again. From the mid-90’s to early ’00’s, the singer was Paul Laine. Each have 3 studio album and a cool combo set included in this list for a total of 7 albums ranked. No live albums or any compilations included.
The classic line-up for me is Bruno Ravel (bass/guitar), Steve West (drums), Andy Timmons (guitar), Kasey Smith (Keyboards) and Ted Poly (vocals). When they switched out with Paul Laine (vocals) I was perfectly happy as he was a great singer and I loved his debut album ‘Stick It In Your Ear’. The line-up has change over the years, but Bruno and Steve have been the constants.
The band is a story of two different bands. The beginning was all having a good time, full of fun and excitement with songs about Sex, Sex, Rock & Roll and more Sex…did I mention sex?? Then they became more serious tone, with a more mature sound and flat out better song writing. Both bands I liked equally as they each brought something to the table. I think they are worth checking out, but they might not be everyone’s cup of tea. I hope you enjoy…
WORST – REVOLVE (2009):
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If you read my site, you know Def Leppard is one of my all-time favorite bands, if not the #1 band on my list. And for that, this list was extremely hard for me to do, yet easy as well. I will already go ahead and say it, there is not a horrible album in this bunch only some I like more than others and yet a few that are absolute no-brainers as the top choices. And yes, I am biased.
Speaking of top choices, my Top 5 is my Top 5 because each album is completely different. The band completely changed up the sound and style on each of these albums and when the band does that, for me they hit it out of the park.
From the very beginning in 1980 with their debut and all the way up to today, the band has been mainstay in my musical journey. In 2019, they will be inducted in to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and all I can say is it is about damn time!!! They received the highest public vote so I am not the only one that things these guys from England are pretty darn great.
So, let’s get to it. Here is my favorite Def Leppard albums from the worst one to the very best. I hope you enjoy it.
WORST – SONGS FROM THE SPARKLE LOUNGE (2008)
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For me, this was a local band making it big. Collective Soul was from Stockbridge, GA which was just outside of Atlanta so for they were a local band since I lived just outside of Atlanta as well…only in a slightly different area. The band was Ed Roland, brother Dean Roland, Will Turpin, Ross Childress and Shane Evans. Ed Roland was the driving, creative force behind the band and still is today.
The band started selling numerous copies of their debut album ‘Hints Allegations and Things Left Unsaid’ without a record label’s help. I think they sold over 10,000 copies. The record companies took notice and they were snatched up pretty quickly. In 1994, Atlantic Records signed them and basically slapped their label name on the disc and put it out since the album was already made. Not a bad investment. The rest is history.
Now we are over 25 years later and the band is getting ready to release their 10th studio album and to celebrate, I thought I would rank all their albums from worst to first. And let me tell you this was really hard for me. Collective Soul is a very consistent band. They have a sound that is consistent throughout all albums. They don’t venture far from their formula and why should they. This is amazing considering they have been through 3 lead guitarists over the years, but have kept that same guitar sound.
The hard thing for me is what order as on any given day I can like one album more than the other and then back to liking another one. There isn’t a bad album in the bunch only some I like more than others. I stuck with only the Studio albums, no collections, no E.Ps and no live albums so not everything is here on this list. I hope you enjoy it and maybe discover a band you weren’t all too familiar with.
WORST – AFTERWORDS (2007)
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Ace Frehley! This ratty kid walks into the audition with a mismatched pair of shoes and Gene and Paul are not sure what to think of this mess. He plugs in and plays and the rest is Kisstory as they say. Ace is the one of the main reasons I love rock & roll. His playing was amazing and he played with such feel that you wanted to be Ace. When you and your friends wanted to pretend to be Kiss, I always wanted Ace and if I couldn’t get Ace, I was Paul (no one wanted to be Peter, not even Peter…old joke).
His time with Kiss was tumultuous at best. But when the band did their solo albums back in 1978, Ace showed he had the goods to do this on his own and eventually that is what he did. Eventually due to his drinking and other issues, Ace was let go and his solo career began. And that solo career is the focus. We will include the Kiss solo album because it is an Ace Frehley album, but only Ace’s stuff, no other Kiss. And only studio albums will be counted, no live or compilations.
Sit back and enjoy the ranking of the Ace Frehley albums from Worst to First…
THE WORST – FREHLEY’S COMET – SECOND SIGHTING (1988)
Now when it comes to Ace, I am a little biased. I do enjoy all his albums so for me “worst” is a little harsh. I would just say it is the least favorite and not really the “worst”. I have heard some pretty awful albums and this isn’t one of them. But, it isn’t that great either in my humble opinion. I know some would disagree (right LeBrain!!).
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It is time for the Top 20 Songs of 2018. My previous post, if you missed it, was the Top 20 Rock Songs of 2018. Go check it out by clicking on the link. These 20 songs are all genres other than rock. Some were popular and chart toppers and others were not. They are my favorites, that touched me in some way so don’t expect any indie bands or anything trendy. If you want that go to one of the cool sites out there, this ain’t it.
If you missed the Top Rock Albums of 2018 or the Top Albums of 2018 (that were not Rock), just click on the link and go check them out.
Let’s get started…
#20 – “Space Cowboy” – Kacey Musgrave off the album ‘Golden Hour’: I am not huge into today’s country music, but Kacey is different. She is doing things her way, pushing boundaries and sounds. I love her voice and her songs are always interesting and worth diving into lyrically. This one is no different. It is more pop than country, but still good.
#19 – “Say Hello” – Rhett Walker Band off the ‘Rhett Walker Band E.P.’: Rhett’s a Christian rock band and this song comes off with the power of Church Revival and gets you up out of you chair, hands in the air and give it your all. If you want to get moving, this will do it.
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Welcome to the Top 20 Rock Songs of 2018. These songs are my favorite songs of the year and were not necessarily played on the radio or even shot up the charts. They just moved me in some way good or bad!
If you missed the Top Rock Albums of 2018 or the Top Albums of 2018 (that were not Rock), just click on the link and go check them out.
It is time to start the list so here we go…
#20 – “Loading Zones” – Kurt Vile off the album ‘Bottle it In’: Kurt’s can be about the mundane and anything that troubles him in life. This is about the horrors of trying to park in the city. It has such a great little beat to it and some great guitar and such a simple subject that yet turns into something amazing. The video is great as well.
#19 – “Roll Me Under” – Stone Temple Pilots off the album ‘Stone Temple Pilots (2018)’: I know I did give the album the best review, but I liked this song. It had the old STP sound, but it was also Jeff Gutt at his best on the album. Such a heavy bass and guitar sound, it was just great.
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2018 was another year with some great releases and way too many to get through them all so I am sure I missed a number of great albums and if you look around the web, there will be tons of Top Album lists you can get a pretty good idea of what you should check out in case you missed any of these.
This list will be my favorite “Rock” albums of the year. All other types of music will be for a later post. I am going to leave this one to my favorite genre. It is a broad genre, but these are the albums that I consider to be ROCK!!
Also note, these are MY FAVORITES!! These are not the most popular or trendy albums. These are the albums that I connected with during the year and I kept coming back to again and again. And without further adieu, here are the Top Rock Albums of 2018:
My #1 Album of the Year:
Reach – The Great Divine: A modern, yet melodic rock album that just grabs hold and won’t let go from beginning to end. A band I had never heard of prior to this album and I am now wondering where they have been my whole life. Just a fantastic album with no songs to skip or delete. Almost pure perfection. The first album I bought that was new in 2018 and still listen to it today. With songs like “The Great Divine”, “Nightmare” and “Into Tomorrow” you can see they have the goods. The production value was great, the music, the vocals, it was all solid and my favorite album of the year!! Give it a try (and check out my original review by clicking the album title).
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Lifehouse started in 1996 as the band Blyss. This was while they were in high school and by 1998, the recorded a bunch of Demos. In 2000, the band went back and re-recorded 12 of the 15 original demos and those demos became their debut album, ‘No Name Face’. Apparently, they decided to change the band name for this release to Lifehouse because the songs were about lead singer, Jason Wade’s life and other people’s life. The name was believed to be a good fit to encompass all that.
The band would go on to release 7 studio albums between 2000 and 2015. They have had their ups and downs as a band, they have had hits, been popular and not so popular and have taken the typical roller coaster of success. I have followed the band from the debut album all the way to today and still one of my favorites even if I haven’t liked everything they have done. But there is more that I like than I don’t like and that is what matters.
I am going to go through all 7 albums and tell you what I like and don’t like about each as well as rank them from the Worst album to their #1 album in my book. If you are not familiar with them, I hope this will spark an interest and you will give them a try.
WORST – STANLEY CLIMBFALL (2002)
After the success of the band’s debut, their sophomore release was a rather big disappointment for me. It wasn’t all bad as there were some great songs such as “Spin”, “Wash” and “Take Me Away”. Heck, the album sold 2 million copies so people liked it. It was a heavier rock sound then the first album and normally that is a good thing for me.
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When Danish musician, Mike Tramp moved to New York in 1983, he met this guitar whiz by the name of Vito Bratta and a little band was formed by the name of White Lion (I am sure I over simplified things). A bass player and drummer were added, a record label was signed and the debut album was ready. The debut, ‘Fight to Survive’, was finished and the record company hated it and refused to release it. Oh yeah, they dropped the band as well. The album eventually was released and then the bass player and drummer were added, labels went bankrupt and it all started all over again. Not the most auspicious start.
The band’s classic line-up was set with Mike, Vito, James LoMenzo (bass) and Greg D’Angelo (drums). A record deal was in place with Atlantic and in 1987, the band released ‘Pride’ and success was finally had…at least for a few years. One thing the makes the band a little different than other bands of the era is that every album has at least one (usually more) song that is political in nature or at least some social commentary to it. Where this worked on some albums, it totally didn’t work on others. As a kid, I could care less about political or socially conscious songs, give me Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll.
I was a fan of White LIon’s in the late 80’s and early 90’s so I thought I would rank their albums as I have some familiarity with all their stuff and felt I could judge them properly. With only 5 studio releases, this one isn’t as long as some of the others I have done which is a nice change of pace for me.
Sit back and see how the albums are ranked and maybe it will spark an interest to go listen to some White Lion.
WORST – RETURN OF THE PRIDE (2008):
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