Listening to some great 80’s glam rock has always been a good thing in my book. Being taken back to the day’s of my youth and how those day’s felt is just the best feeling – dreams were fresh and life was just simpler then. The 80’s and early 90’s were just an experience that can only be understood by the people that had the honor of living it. Never in the history of music has there been more fun and truly great bands. Bands back then were bands. They were larger than life and when a band walked into the room, you knew that the band had entered; there was no doubt. That is something that is lost in today’s music. There are no rock stars anymore and much of the music centers around being technical instead of just playing from the heart. Where has all of the fun gone? Well, the fun is back and there is an open invitation to enter “Clowns Lounge,” the latest album from Enuff Z’Nuff. This is a collection of rare tracks and early demos from the time of the debut Enuff Z’Nuff album that were recorded, but never finished. Take a trip with me into a world that once was 1988-1989………………………Enuffz Never Enuff
The album opens with “Dog On A Bone” which is the first single that will be released. Instantly, the E-String crunches and introduces a straight forward shot of vintage hard rock with all of the hooks and choruses that you would expect. With Chip Z’Nuff taking over the vocal duties as medical reasons had forced Donnie Vie to step away from the business, still, Donnie’s mark is all over this. I must say that the band sounds just great with Chip on vocals and has not missed a beat. Classic 80’s and early 90’s hard rock served to perfection.
Track #2 “Runaway” gives me that “Fly High Michelle” meets “New Thing” with just a smooth vibe and greatness in the simplicity. This is Rock N’ Roll the way it should be, tons of emotion delivered on a plate of pure good feelings and emotion; Music that sticks with you. There is more of the same with “Back In Time” and “She Makes It Harder,” huge hooks and choruses, combined with heavier, rockin grooves that just transport you back to 1989. There is a slightly psychedelic trip entered with “Rockabye Dreamland” as an all-time high is reached on this musical journey.
This album, while being a mix of demos and tracks brought back to life from their late 80’s slumber, has also brought back the voice of one of the true greats from the hair metal era, Jani Lane of Warrant. Jani appears on the track “Devil Of Shakespeare” which also features an appearance by James Young of Styx. The song brings the best elements of Enuff Z’Nuff with the harmonies of Warrant’s “I Saw Red” when combined have almost a Beatlesque style feel.
There is just a non-stop barrage of excellent rock n’ roll tracks on this album and the full set list just goes on and on with “Radio,” “Good Love” and “Round and Round.” The latter two, in particular, offer a touch heavier rocker with a punch in the face groove and a wham-bam thank you maam style that epitomizes what this band is all about. This is just flat-out fun. More of the same with “Nothing,” “Backstreet Kids” and “One More Hit.” “Nothing” is just a cool, slow paced feel which has some really cool guitar riffs by Tory Stoffregen, mixed behind the chorus that stand out and accentuate the flow of the song perfectly. “Backstreet Kids” is a standout for me as it has a faster pace and groove. This is a slightly harder edge and is a song that just flat out rocks. Nice crunchy guitar and a solo that rips, late 80’s style to a T.
To say that this era of music was and always will be the era that defined music the most and the era that has been the most influential, is a statement that I will stand behind to my dying day’s. When I listen to “Clown’s Lounge” as well as anything by Enuff Z’nuff, I truly appreciate what the past has brought us and I look forward to what it will say to us in the future. This album is a time capsule for what great music is all about. The new version of this band has picked up right where the original started and has really transcended time. Vocal melodies and songs that are written to stick with you are the true definition of Enuff Z’Nuff and I look forward to what these guys will offer in the future as I continue to honor their past.
Dog On A Bone
Back In Time
She Makes It Harder
The Devil Of Shakespeare
Round And Round
One More Hit.
Enuff Z’nuff is:
Chip Z’nuff – Singer, electric bass, guitar
Tony Fennell – Electric guitar, vox
Tory Stoffregen – Lead guitar, vox
Erik Donner – Drums, percussion, voxAlbum recordings feature performances of: Donnie Vie, Derek Frigo, Jani Lane, James Young.