Contraband (Impact) 1991
Contraband was a very short-lived band made up of musicians from other well known bands including Vixen's Share Pedersen on bass, Ratt's Bobby Blotzer on drums, the twin-axe-attack of Michael Schenker (UFO/MSG) and Tracii Guns (LA Guns) and vocalist Richard Black from Shark Island (who?). The style isn't surprising when you look at the names of the bands that contributed to this project, sounding like the "hair metal" you might expect. What is surprising is that I actually enjoyed this disc on the very first listen and found myself wanting to hear it again. Schenker's leads are outstanding and really ADD to the songs, as opposed to being the song, unlike some of his MSG discs. Some of the material, however, is admittedly just well-produced corporate rock (AOR fluff) made specifically for radio. There are a two obscure covers on this disc; David Bowie's "Hang On to Yourself" and Mott the Hoople's "All the Way From Memphis" both of which are actually very well done. If I am not mistaken, "All the Way From Memphis" even gave the band a minor radio hit. Certainly this is not the greatest cd in the world, but at 99¢, I think I made a pretty good investment.
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