Van Halen album brings rock back to airwaves

provided by Rollingstone.com

Van Halen’s new album, “A Different Kind of Truth,” is their first album in 14 years and features David Lee Roth.

Breanna Fields, Reporter

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Van Halen’s new album, “A Different Kind of Truth,” stirred up a number of reactions within the music industry after its international release on Feb. 7.

This long-awaited reunion featuring the original line-up, with the exception of bassist Michael Anthony, has created an enormous amount of excitement and no doubt a bit of hype due to the fact that this is a group that at one point was considered the greatest rock ‘n’ roll band.

While electronic music currently rules the airwaves, this album has made a considerable attempt to bring back the essence of rock music that has been missing for quite some time.

For that fact alone, we must salute their efforts.

The single off of the album, “Tattoo,” proved to be somewhat of a disappointment. It was a lackluster piece that did little to show off the talents of these legendary hard rockers.

The standards of mediocrity were set early on as far as lyrics were concerned, when David Lee Roth belted out the first few lines singing, “I got Elvis on my elbow/ When I flex Elvis talks/ I got hula girls on the back of my leg/and she hula’s when I walk.”

A possible explanation for the lack of musical depth could be contributed to an inherent attempt at commercialism.

It would not be far-fetched to believe that a band would plan to reform and tour for the sake of selling records and merchandise. Take Aerosmith for example. Boston’s bad boys have grown old and withered, but their ticket prices have only increased and their push for merchandise sales is enormous.

You can now purchase apparel, jewelry, and become an official member of their fan club, for a fee, of course!

That isn’t to say that Aerosmith or Van Halen couldn’t put on a thrilling live performance. It’s just a matter of maintaining dignity and having the ability to write new material and continually progress beyond their hit songs released a few decades ago.

Sifting through the tracks, it was not difficult to identify the hidden gem that stood out as an original work. That track, “China Town,” is a fast-paced tune driven by Alex Van Halen’s impressive drum beats and Eddie’s intense riffs.

The song includes the core elements of classic rock while utilizing a more modern approach. It also features a piercing solo that flaunts Eddie’s style and innate ability to play his instrument.

Another notable track off of the album is “Stay Frosty” which starts off with a calm and reserved blues melody and then builds and progresses into a daring feat that sounds very similar to the song, “Ice Cream Man” off of their self-titled album released in 1978.

Recycling riffs can be risky business, but in this case they managed to pull it off well.

Van Halen has already embarked on its 2012 tour and is currently making its way across the U.S. This includes six tour dates in California that are scheduled to take place in June.

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