8 July 2017
Cheap Trick - We're All Alright!
Eighteen albums into a studio career is a good innings by any margin, and Cheap Trick have being doing this for a long time. I was really not expecting this album, it have been released so closely to their last album 'Bang, Zoom. Crazy.... Hello', this is a quick turnaround in anyone's book. I have been wanting to review a Cheap Trick album for an awfully long time and was gutted that I did not manage it with 'Bang...', to be honest there was a time I had no idea who Cheap Trick were. But when I first listened to them properly, I realised how many of their songs I already knew, such as 'Surrender', 'Dream Police'. 'I Want You to Want Me' and other great tracks, it felt like coming home. They have influenced so many of my favourite bands, they have given my favourite bands the influence that helped create their own works. I have since been going through their back catalogue and it is impressive, they have release some classic albums. But whilst the past is important, it is not why we are here. The purpose of this review, the purpose of this post is to look at 'We're All Alright!' I will be reviewing the standard ten track version, there is a deluxe version out there, as well as a Japanese version. But I like to keep things simple here at ATTIWLTMOWOS, I know that might sound like a lie, but it is truthful. So, it is time to see if it is alright or if it is not....
01 - You Got It Going On
Starting the album with a song that has the energy to close a live show, Cheap Trick launch their album with a classic power rock/pop number that contains all the hallmarks at their disposal. It has that timeless sound to the guitars, it has a simple, but effective solo, straight to the point lyrics and a sense of fun and adventure. What is there not to like here?
02 - Long Time Coming
It seems so simple, but it is so hard to make a song like this sound anything but cheesy. But that is Cheap Trick's MO, they take something and make it sound important and relevant once more. They are masters at it and 'Long Time Coming' is proof of this, it is straight to the point, no-nonsense rock pop that works so well. It is another great song on this album.
03 - Nowhere
Three tracks in, the boggie is starting to take over this album and it sounds brilliant. 'Nowhere' is another song that does not mess with the formula, it is a straight forward rock number that is just all out fun. It does not need to be complicated and 'Nowhere' shows everyone how it is done, just by keeping it so
04 - Radio Lover
Oh, Cheap Trick have got the boogie on hard for this song! What a riff, what a fucking riff!!! It is so simple, a blues rock riff turned up to 10. A song about a person who is in love with the radio, it is just pure, unadulterated pop rock that makes your feet move and gets the pulse racing. It is just one of those perfect moments where everything falls into place, song of the album - hands down!
05 - Lolita
Finally, they have taken their foot of the peddle slightly, I was fearful they were going to start entering speed metal territory if they had have kept up that pace. 'Lolita' is a slow rock number, but still a great hard rock number. It is not as ground breaking by any means, but it is another song that does what you expect and it does it perfectly well.
06 - Brand New Name on an Old Tattoo
Revenge and love is in the air on this power pop number, with a healthy dose of hard rock on the side as well. It is a song that sounds like it could have been released from any era of Cheap Trick, it is a fantastic song, plain and simple. It does not need a long review to be honest, it is a great number!
07 - Floating Down
Finally, another slower number. Really, I am enjoying the hard rock numbers of the band, but they are also good at doing ballads as well. 'Floating Down' is beautiful number, a dream pop song with a classic solo in the middle, a luscious piece that makes the world float by in a shimmering haze. I love everything about this song, it hits all the right spots.
08 - She's Alright
'She's Alright' is a nice sing-along number, one for the mobile phones/lighters to come out as the band strum their way through this country influenced song. It feels a little light to be honest, but it is not a bad number either. It has a summer feeling and it has a good solo, what more could you ask for?
09 - Listen to Me
The boogie returns to 'We're All Alright!' on 'Listen to Me' and it adds an energy bolt to this record, one that makes the feet stomp and the urge to dance is strong on this one. It is short, simple and to the point, what is there not to like here on this penultimate number? Nothing, that is what!
10 - The Rest of My Life
Ending the album is the hard rock ballad that is 'The Rest of My Life', it is a curtain caller has a classic feeling at the core of the song. It is a song which once again plays to Cheap Trick's strengths and it works so well. It is an epic power rock song, it has swagger and it ends the album on a perfect note.
For me, this is one of the best albums of their latter day career, it keeps it simple and to the point. By sticking to basics, it plays to their strengths and you would not want them to do anything else. They are the American version of Motörhead for me, the American AC/DC if you will. They have their formula and they have perfected it over the years, this album is a distilled version of that sound and it is as fresh as ever. Are there any faults? Well, that depends on your love of this type of rock album, if you are not a fan of classic rock than this might not be your cup of tea. But that is not the fault of the band, they have just made a brilliant classic rock album, one of the best of 2017. I sadly cannot give it full marks, if only that it is too on the point classic rock style, it could have done with maybe one more slower number. I know it has about three, but it would not have hurt it to have another and maybe the cover of 'Blackberry Way' should have been on the standard version. You must also at this point (rightly or wrongly), compare 'We're All Alright!' to their back catalogue and stand it up against their past release. To be honest, as good as this album sounds, they have released other albums which have the edge this one. But it is so close, I mean it is within touching distance and it does not detract from the fact that this is a brilliant record from Cheap Trick. If you want to get your rock on, this is the album for you.
9 out of ten - Almost perfect, almost....
Top track - Radio Lover
You can purchase We're All Alright! on Amazon here.
You can visit the Cheap Trick website here.
You can follow the activities of Cheap Trick on Facebook here.
You can stream We're All Alright! on Spotify here.
You can stream We're All Alright! on Deezer here.
You can stream We're All Alright! on Tidal here.
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