Alice Cooper – “Paranormal”

 Posted by on January 9, 2018 at 19:58  Add comments
Jan 092018

Alice Cooper, the grand-daddy of Shock Rock is out with his 27th studio album “Paranormal”, released on July 28, 2017. Alice has been around for almost Five decades now and at 69, the man still has an enigmatic voice and pelting out rollicking numbers. This album sees a lot of featuring artists with the likes of ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons, U2 drummer Larry Mullen Jr., Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover, as well as a highly anticipated mini-reunion of the original Alice Cooper band members. The album has been produced by long-time collaborator Bob Ezrin (of Pink Floyd and Deep Purple fame).

The Album features two tracks performed by the original Alice Cooper band (Neal Smith, Dennis Dunaway, and Michael Bruce, sans Glen Buxton) and collaborations with the Swedish songwriter and session guitarist Tommy Denander, Tommy Henriksen, Steve Hunter and more. Cooper fondly remembers his Original band from High school “When the original band broke up in 1975, there was no bad blood”. “There were no lawsuits-we had just burned out the creative process. We had had recorded something like five Platinum albums in a row. We were never out of sight of each other for 10 years. Everybody just went their own way. Neal, Dennis and I always stayed in touch. Mike disappeared for a while and Glen Buxton passed away in 1997, which was a big blow.”

The album 10 songs on Disc 1, 2 songs from the Original Line up and 6 live songs on Disc 2. The album opens up with “Paranormal” which has a playful blend of 80s glam rock and rollicking guitar solo. Although the song was a bit patchy and loosely tied, I moved on to “Dead Flies”. Packed with palm muted riffs and catchy chorus this engaged more energy than its predecessor.  With my eyes closed, and “Fireball” queued in next, I felt myself teleported to the 70s, I could picture myself witnessing Alice in all his glory. The guitar tones are heavy as metal and the rhythm and the wah-wah solo gets you groovy.

“Paranoic Personality” pounces on you with a rumbling and thudding bass catching up quickly with a pentatonic and quirky chorus and guitar solo. “Falling in Love” takes you for a rock and roll rhythmic adventure while having some fun shelling out catchy verses. “Dynamite Road” is a power packed fast paced song with an upbeat rhythm, highly entertaining lyrics and a face melting guitar solo. “Private Public Breakdown” is your usual rock and roll number with an interesting transitional “ho!” from the interlude and back to the second verse.

Funk and fun are witnessed on the upbeat “Holy Water”, you’ve got to give it up for Alice for pulling out these highly energetic numbers like a child’s play. Squealing introduction to give the “Rats” what they want showcases true wit while having some fun at the same time.  “The sound of A” adds eerie melancholy to an otherwise happy album and is sure to give you chills.

And lastly the two songs from the old line-up, “Genuine American Girl” starts off with a rugged 4by4 drum beat with folks joining bar after bar, and an old school start on “You and All Of Your Friends” brings you the classic Alice Cooper sound back to life.

Production – I didn’t like the production on this album, maybe it was too mono for me, no panning, no stereo effect or maybe It was all intentional.

Conclusion – Well! It was a good album, great collaboration and got to hear a lot of different stuff on this album. Without doubt one of my favourite albums for the year that had gone by!

Rating: 8/10

Written by: Ankit Sood

Track Listing:
01. Paranormal
02. Dead Flies
03. Fireball
04. Paranoiac Personality
05. Fallen In Love
06. Dynamite Road
07. Private Public Breakdown
08. Holy Water
09. Rats
10. The Sound Of A

Studio recordings with the original Alice Cooper band:

11. Genuine American Girl
12. You and All Of Your Friends

Band Members :
Studio album
Alice Cooper – vocals (all tracks), backing vocals (track 7)
Tommy Denander – guitar (all tracks)
Tommy Henriksen – guitar (all tracks), backing vocals (all tracks), percussion (tracks 4, 6, and 9), sound effects (track 4, 6, 9, and 10), keyboards (track 9),
Larry Mullen Jr. – drums (tracks 1–8, and 10)
Bob Ezrin – keyboards (tracks 1 and 9), organ (tracks 3 and 10), sound effects (tracks 4), backing vocals (track 7)
Roger Glover – bass (track 1)
Billy Gibbons – guitar (track 5)
Jimmy Lee Sloas – bass (tracks 2, and 4–8)
Dennis Dunaway – bass (tracks 3, 9 and 10)
Parker Gispert – guitar (track 7), backing vocals (track 7)
Steve Hunter – lead guitar (track 8)
Demi Demaree – backing vocals (tracks 8 and 10)
Johnny Reid – backing vocals (tracks 8 and 10)
Jeremy Rubolino – horns (track 8)
Adrian Olmos – horns (track 8)
Chris Traynor – horns (tracks 8)
Michael Bruce – guitar (track 9)
Neal Smith – drums (track 9)
Nick Didkovsky – guitar (tracks 3 and 10)

Studio recordings with the original Alice Cooper band:
Michael Bruce – guitar (both tracks)
Neal Smith – drums (both tracks)
Dennis Dunaway – bass (both tracks)
Steve Hunter – guitar (track 11), lead guitar (track 12)
Bob Ezrin – keyboards (track 11), backing vocals (track 11)
Tommy Denander – guitar (both tracks)
Nick Didkovsky – guitar (track 12)
Tommy Henriksen – backing vocals (track 12)

Record Label: earMUSIC, July 2018

Weblinks: Website / Facebook / Twitter 

Buy the album here:
Holland: First Paradox
Norway: Nordic Mission

Lyric video for ‘Paranormal’

Video (audio) for ‘Paranoiac Personality’

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