Whether it was over saturation of the hair metal music market, or the introduction of grunge, Jesse Strange’s self titled debut is a release that vanished off the face of the earth almost as quickly as it got released. I was finally able to replace my old cassette with a shiny new CD, so I decided to give this one a few spins this week.
Fans of 80’s hard rock should eat up these tunes that I would describe a cross between Great White, Kix and Steelheart.
This is a solid debut by this four piece band featuring Grant Tibor on Lead Vocals, Scott Migone on Guitar, Paul Trust on Drums and Keyboards, and Danny Lullie on Bass.
This is a fun disc, full of fat guitar riffs, sing along choruses, and overall very good pop metal tunes. It is almost comical how this CD falls into that typical late 8o’s formula of two big rockers and a ballad. Raise A Little Hell, and Love on the Telephone are quite good, and the power ballad Make a Wish, should have made this band a household name. This song was penned by Jesse Harms (Sammy Hagar, Eddie Money, REO Speedwagon). Strangely enough, Beau Nasty did this song as well, but this version is better.
After the first three tracks, I found myself starting to lose interest, so I decided to spin the disc again later to be fair.
On the second pass, I liked Silver Screen a lot more. The guitar work of Scott Migone is superb on this track. Weekend Tonight is another fun sing songy tune. This reminds me a lot of some of Poison’s earlier tracks. I couldn’t really get into Coyote Morning, but I do like Down and Dirty. This song kind of reminds me of Heaven’s Edge a little bit.
Living Without Your Love could have been a better song with a little work, but after hearing this a second time, it sounds kind of generic. Dancing with Strangers didn’t work for me either. This song was good until it got to the chorus, and it went down hill from there.
The Last Goodbye closes this disc with a piano based power ballad. This is another song that needed a little more polish. It is very good musically, but the lyrics should have been arranged so that it was more of a sing along type song. Instead, singer Grant Tabor gets a few Steve Whiteman like screeches in.
A big name producer could have taken this album and rearranged some parts, and improved this album greatly. This debut was produced by the band, and some of the songs lack the punch they needed. As a whole, there are certainly some good songs on this release, which makes it a disc for hair metal fans to seek out.
The band released a new CD in 2006, with all of their unreleased material called Looking For Some Strange. The band is not currently together. Grant Tibor has turned up in a new band called The Blackstone Project, while Scott Migone is a Florida based band called Philth.
You can pick up used copies of this out of print disc for less than $10.00 off of Amazon.com and EBay. At that price, it is hard to pass this one up.
To hear more songs off this disc, click on the highlighted songs below, or visit the band’s myspace page here.
Rating: Out of 10