The godfather of shock rock wants you to move. Not tap your foot. Move. With his twentieth dip into the solo album kool-aid, Alice Cooper wants you to remember his blues rock ‘n’ roll roots with Paranormal. The songs have their classic Alice feel, but no one can deny the boogie flowing through this L.P.
Given his busy schedule, it’s impressive that Alice Cooper has time to bust out an album—especially one that nails the garage jammed feel, but still maintains the visually dominant aspects of his music. This sound was hinted at on his previous album Welcome 2 My Nightmare, but the tone fits perfectly for this bluesy number.
In some ways Alice Cooper has become a lyrical prophet, a satirist turned poet. Originally, he and the band were confronting in image and lyric, but now his words fit more as metaphors and vulgar representations of society. The second track ‘Dead Flies’ paints a pessimistic picture of society where phones hold our secrets, technology leaves us as braindead zombies, and attempts at seeing another world are barred by accusations of lying and money. Continuing in other tracks such as ‘Paranoiac Personality’ and ‘Private Public Breakdown,’ the social commentary on mental health, rumours, and the ever-decreasing sense of privacy and security via social media gets a few cogs turning. The most haunting track however, is ‘The Sound of A.’ It’s sparse and open, cold and dark, and despite its hints at melody, the message and metaphor keep it from being pleasant. If they were after the music that fits the silence after a gunshot, they found it.
Amongst these gems are Alice classics ‘Fireball,’ ‘Dynamite Road,’ ‘Rats,’ and ‘Holy Water,’ all offerings for the diehard fans. They rock and groove and move you along. You can see the stage show, the ghouls, the devils, the snakes and swords; it’s Alice down to the marrow. But it’s not shocking anymore, it seems familiar. And as AC/DC said, ‘Hell Ain’t A Bad Place to Be.’
Paranormal comes packing some tasty treats. Featuring guest spots by some of Alice’s esteemed musician friends, the album attains what all garage-esque albums want, a good time. The three bonus tracks written and recorded with original Alice Cooper members Dennis Dunaway, Neal Smith, and Michael Bruce also wrap up the album really well, before hearing some live classics.
Overall the album’s a goody. It moves, cruises, and gets you thinking. Maybe through his radio show Alice has realised that he needs to be more honest and not so outlandish, the problem is, the fictions are becoming true.
Rating: 9 outta 10 devil horns.
Paranormal will be released on the 28th of July 2017.
Pre-order at JB Hi-Fi for a chance to win two tickets and a meet-and-greet with Alice Cooper.
More album pre-order options are available here.
Alice Cooper will be touring Australia in October, celebrating the 40th Anniversary of his first Australian tour. Joining him is the one and only Ace Frehley.
PERTH ARENA, PERTH – Tuesday 17 October
THEBARTON THEATRE, ADELAIDE – Thursday 19 October
ROD LAVER ARENA, MELBOURNE – Friday 20 October
HORDERN PAVILION, SYDNEY – Saturday 21 October
AIS ARENA, CANBERRA – Monday 23 October
ENTERTAINMENT CENTRE, NEWCASTLE – Tuesday 24 October
CONVENTION CENTRE, BRISBANE – Wednesday 25 October
Get tickets here.
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