Hear No Evil [Release date 23.09.13 and 27.01.14]
Alice Cooper is not an artist whose back catalogue has seen much by way of remastering and re-issues and I’ve longed for Bob Ezrin to dig out the original recordings of Love It To Death and Killer and give them a tickle. But no, very strangely, all we’ve had to date are Billion Dollar Babies and Welcome To My Nightmare, with the rest of Alice’s extensive output remaining largely untouched.
So quite why Trash and Hey Stoopid have been singled out for special treatment, it’s unclear. But the pair crown Alice’s mid-career success that came after more than a decade of booze addled ‘wilderness’ years. Nobody loved Alice in 1988.
But the recruitment of Desmond Child and a host of guest musicians including Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora, Steven Tyler, Joe Perry, and Steve Lukather was a masterstroke and Trash (1989), with its classic singles ‘Poison’, ‘Bed of Nails’, ‘House of Fire’, and’ Only My Heart Talkin”, took Alice back to the upper reaches of the album and singles charts on both side of the Atlantic. *****
It was a winning formula that Hey Stoopid repeated two years later with an even more impressive supporting cast including Satriani and Vai, Slash, Nikki Sixx and Mick Mars, and Ozzy Osbourne. And the hits kept coming – ‘Hey Stoopid’, ‘Love’s A Loaded Gun’ and ‘Feed My Frankenstein’ (which got Alice even wider exposure in Wayne’s World).
The albums rescued Alice’s career and provided a platform that underpins his continued success and re-emergence in recent years. So, if you already have the original releases, are the remasters worth getting?
There is some bonus material, but not a great deal – Trash gets a rare radio edit of ‘Only My Heart Talkin”, and a cover of Spirit’s ‘I Got A Line On You’, while Hey Stoopid weighs in with a title track edit and the B-sides ‘Fire’ (Hendrix) and ‘It Rained All Night’.
It’s hardly a clincher, especially when there’s known unreleased outtake material from the Trash sessions. As for the re-mastering, the sound’s a little brighter, but perhaps a little thinner and truth be told, there’s not a great deal in it. On that basis alone, I wouldn’t recommend re-investment. But if you have neither of these ‘classic’ albums, they’re an essential purchase.
Review by Pete Whalley
The latest Facebook Live session from Canadian singer-songwriter Josh Taerk was streamed on Sunday 22 November.
More about Josh: http://getreadytorock.me.uk/blog/?s=%22Josh+Taerk%22
David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 BST (GMT+1, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 15 November 2020.
UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 ( BST, GMT+1) as part of a five hour blues rock marathon “Tuesday is Bluesday at GRTR!”. The show is repeated on Wednesdays at 22:00, Fridays at 20:00). This show was first broadcast 17 November 2020
Listen in to Get Ready to ROCK! Radio…
Click the appropriate icons at the top of the page.
Featured Albums w/c 23 November (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 JEFF SCOTT SOTO Wide Awake (In My Dreamland) (Frontiers)
12:00-13:00 LAZARUS DREAM Alive (Pride & Joy Music)
14:00-16:00 RONAN FURLONG The King Of Leaves (Thoroughbred Music)
Power Plays w/c 23 November (Mon-Fri)
L.A. GUNS All That You Are (Golden Robot Records)
THE DUST CODA Limbo Man (Earache)
EBBA BERGKVIST & THE FLAT TIRE BAND 68 Twin (indie)
IRON SAVIOR Souleater (AFM Records)
IVY GOLD This Is My Time (indie)
Tweets by Get Ready to ROCK!