Skid Row/40 Seasons-The Best Of Skid Row

40 Seasons Best of Skid Row

Skid Row is an American heavy metal band, formed in 1987 in Toms River, New Jersey. They are named after Phil Lynott and Gary Moore‘s first band. They were most successful in the late 1980s and early 1990s when their first three albums with lead singer Sebastian Bach and drummer Rob Affuso were multi-platinum successes. Their current line-up consists of Johnny Solinger (vocals), Dave “The Snake” Sabo (guitar), Scotti Hill (guitar), Rachel Bolan (bass) and Dave Gara (drums). As of the end of 1996 the band has sold 20 million albums worldwide.

As of 2008, Skid Row has released five full-length albums, an EP, a compilation album, and a live album. For album and single sales information, see the Skid Row discography page. They became popular with their first two albums, Skid Row and Slave to the Grind, which are often considered their best-known works to date. Their last full-length studio album, Revolutions per Minute, came out on October 24, 2006, receiving mixed reviews among the public.

They are often associated with glam metal, partly due to their image on their debut album, Skid Row, which spawned the hits “18 and Life“, “Youth Gone Wild“, and “I Remember You” for the band. They would eventually go on to foster an image base geared toward more traditional heavy metal and hard rock audiences.

40 Seasons: The Best of Skid Row is a compilation album released by Skid Row in 1998, which includes the chart topping singles: “18 and Life“, “I Remember You” and “Youth Gone Wild“. Lead singer Sebastian Bach left the band due to personality differences. After Bach’s departure, the remaining band members continued with a new lineup. The Subhuman Race album is represented with remixed, demo and/or live versions on songs. “Into Another“, “My Enemy” and “Breakin’ Down” were remixed for this album with more tender, slightly cleaner mixes, presumably so they fit more suiting with the other tracks. It also included two unreleased tracks, one from the 1988 Skid Row sessions, and one from the 1990-91 Slave To The Grind sessions. [Wikipedia]

Youth Gone Wild—-Full of blistering 80’s style power Metal from the very first note, once Bach enters with his vocal you are an instant fan. There were few singers from this time period that could match the soaring and clear vocals like Sebastian. This is a huge arena style anthem that literally drove the kids wild….I know, I was there. This is a remarkable piece of musical history.

18 And Life—-Without a doubt, one of this band’s shining moments and one of the most recognized ‘power ballads’ of the last two decades. The guitars are moderate at the onset but add the necessary Metal when it is called upon. Most notable is the voice….Bach was a master at power ballads and this is no exception…accompanied by a video that was on mass rotation, this song sat comfortably at No. 1 for the band.

Piece Of Me—-Beginning with a huge bass line, this track has a really nice blues lean to it…Bach delivers a vocal that is dirty and sleazy…the sound of the song borders on Poison territory but manages to escape it. This is subtle, not as rough and heavy hitting as many of the bands songs…none the less, this is a favorite of mine. Energetic and full of life…this will kick-start your party.

I Remember You—-If you ask any 80’s Metalhead to name a favorite power ballad, this will no doubt show up in the top 5 of any fan. Again…the band is strong and shows their diversity but the star of the show is Sebastian…you could never ask for a stronger or more emotional ballad from a singer. This is a soaring example of the great things that were happening on the fringes of the whole Glam Metal scene. Remarkable!!!

The Threat—-One thing you notice about this band after a few listens is that they have their own very distinct sound…this is glaringly apparent on this song. There is no mistaking the sound of the band or the voice for that matter. This is another great anthem of rebellion and geared towards every wannabe juvenile delinquet…love this.

Psycho Love—-Bass heavy and with a distinct sound, this track is much heavier than most of the previous mentioned songs. Still combining a nice mix of blues with Metal, the band is never overbearing or wasteful with their sound. This was a heavier record…after the more generic sound of the debut. Bach stretched his vocals much more on this record than ever and the result was a #1 record for the band.

Monkey Business—-Beginning like a seasoned Blues veteran, the band provides a great canvas for Bach to scream on…and scream he does. This is aggressive, bluesy and full of everything we loved about the band…even an occasional cow bell in the backdrop. This is a classic piece of history…..allowing the band to tour worldwide with G n’ R right after its release. This is fantastic!!!

Quicksand Jesus—-In the ensuing years following this release, this has become one of my very favorite songs from this band….outside of Slave To The Grind. This delves back into the power ballad mode, and the result is better than anything the band had released up to now. This is sweet, slick  and full of remarkable emotion. A+

Slave To The Grind—-This is one of the most aggressive and powerful songs the band has ever produced. The throttle is stuck on open with this delivery…the vocal is deep and maniacal. I literally love this track. Everytime I hear it is almost like the first time I ever tuned into it….this is pure balls to the wall metal…never to be repeated.

Into Another [Remix]—-For me, this falls a little flat…this is the sound of a band imploding and the song lacks passion and consistency for me. Not to say that this is awful, you can just feel a different tone from the interaction of the band and the singer. this is nice, but it lacks passion and commitment.

Frozen [Demo Version]—-Wow….what a great bass line to kick off a song with. This is obviously a demo, as the quality of sound is sub-par….none the less, this has all the passion that you expect. The vocal is odd for me….not sure if this is Bach or not…at times you recognize it and at other times it seems so hoarse and disconnected you wonder what is going on. All in all this is acceptable…but why the demo version?

My Enemy [Remix]—-Delving back into the blues rock that was featured on earlier tracks, this is a nice aggressive track that has really great drums right in the front of the mix….the vocal again is manipulated…trying to fit into the changing musical scene of the time. This is too doctored and would have been much more effective if it was tried and true Metal rather than played out rock trying to sound Alternative.

Breakin’ Down [Remix]—-Attempting to resurrect the glory days with a power ballad, the band as a whole really missed the mark with this track. It comes across as lackluster and full of the sounds of a band trying to hard to remain relevant…a waste of space on this release…ugh!

Beat Yourself Blind [Live]—-Sebastian delivers a really aggressive performance on this live track, but the sound quality leaves something to be desired. The band seems almost removed from the mix…at times you hear more of the crowd than the music. This is a cheap attempt to keep a band alive that had seen better days…it falls flat for me and the quality of this recording is just terrible.

Forever [1988 Previously Unreleased]—-The sound of this is a little too deep and unproduced, but the energy and the voice is just classic. This is fantastic and why it was not released until this compilation is beyond me. Bach literally soars on the chorus and the sound of the song is so damn catchy you will listen to it a few times before you file this CD away again. Excellent!

Fire In The Hole [Demo Version]—-This is great!!! Aggressive, pummeling and full of the sound that made this band huge…notably a great vocal and a lead guitar line that just makes you smile with enthusiasm. This is a great way to finish off a compilation that at times was lackluster.

***3/4 out of 5


One Response to “Skid Row/40 Seasons-The Best Of Skid Row”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by mark j maras. mark j maras said: Skid Row/40 Seasons-The Best Of Skid Row: […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: