Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Van Halen II

What with Julie finishing 'Crazy from the Heat' it was time to play some Roth, some Van Halen, with both a newly invigorated turntable and a new critical capacity. Soon I shall have ALL the Dave Lee Roth records, and Julie fancies the (now very hard to get) Helmut Newton poster (him chained to a dog pound) included in at least the US release of 'Women and Children First' as a pin up for her studio.
Now why should you love, or even be interested in, David Lee Roth? It's thirty years ago, it's LA, it's the sublime combination of rock and roll and vaudeville. Also, nobody else had the range of DLR, nobody could growl, then squeal like a cat in the same line quite like him IN TUNE, he's like a siamese. And then, there was the jumping, the pure showmanship.
Van Halen II is by no means a great record, but it is, in it's fresh enthusiasm for good fun with your feet in the sand and your tits in the air, a perfect incarnation of a certain new adolescent experience which had been banished from 'heavy rock'. While 'Running with the Devil' from the first album was the first hit, it was really not what Roth was about at all, Van Halen were clearly about fun when he was around.
After a decade of Jethro Tull- the biggest grossing band of the seventies in the US would you believe- who wouldn't love this stuff?

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