Sunday. February 10. 1985
The Pittsburgh Press
By Pete Bishop
The Pittsburgh Preu
If you were among the 17.177 who
saw The Who at the Civic Arena
Sept. 28, 1982. you heard everything
on “Who’s Last” (MCA2-8018) but
you still might want it to help recall
that good time.
If you weren’t in that crowd. you
might want it as a token of a good
time that supposedly won’t come
again. The Who’s ’82 tour was billed
as their'farewell American trek (but
given the mercurial nature of the
rock world, don't bet your life sav-
ings on it).
According to sleeve notes, the
band itself culled the 16 songs on.
these two live records from “a
number of different shows." The
faithfully rendered numbers touch
almost all phases of their career
and are. for the most part, strong,
sturdy. straight-ahead rockers.
For my money, I’ll take kickoff
song “My Generation," “Pinball
Wizard.” little—heard “Long Live
Rock,” ually little~heard “Dr.
Jimmy" e only song Roger Dal-
trey introduces), “Summertime
Blues," “Twist and Shout” and the
10-minute rendition of “Won’t Get
T" 1 '
Of course. there are a lot of
winners left undone: “The Kids Are
Alright" “I Can See for Miles” (The
Who’s only American Top-lo hit).
“Squeeze Box," “You Better You
Bet.” But that was true at the arena
that night. too. and no two records
could do justice to so rich a career
‘ as The Who’s.
It would be nice to report that
“Who's Last” was well-recorded. but
that's not the case. Pete Townshend
is in fine fettle; you can hear every
ower chord (and there are a ton of
em). You can hear every one of
Kenney Jones's drumbeats. But the
vocals in general and Daltrey in
particular are too low in the mix -
and hence take a clobbering.
“Who’s Last” is a respectable
remembrance. although it’s not like
being there. To borrow from two
Who songs. it’s an OK “Substitute"
but it's not “the best I ever had."
AUTOGRAPH often sounds like
Van Halen — and why not? The
quintet opened for Van Halen at the
Civic Arena last March —- without
having a recording contract.
Now, however. Autograph has a
contract with RCA. "We call our
style melodic metal." says singer
Steve Plunkett. “It's designed to
T ' A
‘Who’s Last’ replays group’s final tour
reach not just teenagers but every-
one who loves rock ’n’ roll.”
And “melodic metal” is as apt a
description as any of the songs on
“Sign in Please” (NFL 1-8040).
They have plenty of muscle under-
neath the catchy melodies. close
vocal harmony. tasty keyboard sea-
soning by Steven Isham and lots of
excellent guitar work by Steve
Lynch. He’s not Edward Van Halen,
but he’s not terribly far behind.
Take your pick of “Send Her to
Me." “Nighteen & Non-Stop," “Deep
End," slam-banﬁr “My Girlfriend’s
Boyfriend Isn’t e," easier-rocking
“In the Night" and full-production
“All I’m Gonna Take" — winners all
and not mindless as so much of this
AutOgraph was done in by awful
sound at the area but suffers no such
setback on this LP. It‘s a very
promising debut disc.
DOKKEN rhymes with "rockin’,"
and that’s no accident. Neither is it
an accident that the quartet dresses
in leather, chains, studs, handcuffs
As singer Don Dokken puts it,
“This is a strange band. What makes
the sound is conflict. (Guitarist)
George (Lynch) and I don‘t get
along. but I need his heaviness and
he needs my melodies.”
Consequentl , the results on
“Tooth and Nai " (Elektra 9 60376-
1) blend plenty of power. Lynch’s
fine guitar work, good voca har-
mony, strong melodies and Don’s
non-screech. non-scream leads vo-
And an appealing blend it is. Take
your pick of the title track, “Close
Your Eyes," “Bullets to Spare" ( for
those concerned about such things,
it's an extended sexual innuendo)
and party number “Turn on the
Action." shallow but effective —
and ballad “Alone Again.”
Best of all, the lyrics. as an
accompanying biography brags,
make sense. They're often about
love gone wrong (“I’d like to see you
in the morning light. I like to feel
ou when it comes to night. Now I’m
ere and I‘m all alone. Still I know
how it feels; I’m alone again”).
They‘re also about the status of
Dokken itself (“Writing on the wall
crushed all our hopes and the
dreams we once had Tearin’ it
up in the daytime, burning it down
at night. How long does it take to
break the spell?”).
With any luck, it won’t take much
longer. Dokken is a band that de-
serves to make it bigger.
-r ‘C‘_11__ h---’
The Who, from left, Roger Daltrey, Kenney
Jones, John Entwistle and Pete Townshend.