Picks and Pans Review: Tooth and Nail
One of the dubious advantages of heavy-metal music is that it comes across about the same on state-of-the-art stereo equipment as on cheapo, tinny speakers, provided the volume is turned all the way up. At least Dokken, a Los Angeles-based quartet, can be enjoyed without shaking the pictures off the walls. That's because their sound, at its best, is more on the hard-rock side than heavy metal. Both bang-your-head-against-the-wall metal, which is currently in vogue, and bulldozer hard rock embody the raucous vitality and rebelliousness of adolescence. But Dokken owes as much to the softer group Boston as it does, to say, Slade. Tooth and Nail, the group's second album, has its interesting moments. Though the ballad-like Alone Again is vapid, Just Got Lucky, Heartless Heart and Into the Fire, each based on the common heavy-metal theme of duplicitous, faithless women, contain a smattering of melody while showing off Don Dokken's powerful voice. These songs translate well onto vinyl, but Dokken is trying to build a reputation as a live band. Consequently, most of the record is made up of bombastic, febrile tunes like Turn On the Action and the title track. All of these seem designed to be stadium wreckers, with guitarist George Lynch strumming amok. These guys know all too well on which side they'd like their bread to be buttered. (Elektra)
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