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One of the best rock albums of the 1970's.
on 28 March 2002
When the remastered 'Billion Dollar Babies' came out, it was muted that the remastered 'Welcome To My Nightmare' was to follow, and here it is.
My only criticism of this remaster is, unlike the 'Billion Dollar Babies' remaster which had an extra cd, containing live material from the time as well as studio rarities, all we get here are three extra alternate version tracks.
What can't be understated though, is that quite simply, 'Welcome To My Nightmare' remains not only the best Alice Cooper album since the original group split up, but one of the best rock albums of the 1970's. An epic piece of concept rock featuring the musical macarbe character 'Steven', the climax of the album, but so much more in addition to one of the most disturbing songs ever written. Some of the finest guitar playing ever recorded from Steve Hunter and Dick Wagner, check out the riff on 'Devils' Food' and the solos on most of the tracks, with a production from Bob Ezrin to die for, (This man was to Alice what George Martin was to the Beatles!).
The black sense of humour on tracks like 'Cold Ethyl', boasting the lyrics "She's cool in bed, well she ought to be, coz Ethyls' dead!", provide light relief from really disturbing visions of insanity on 'Some Folks', and the previously mentioned 'Steven'. Ezrins virtuoso piano playing on both epics.
The title track sets the scene with haunting strings disorientating the listener, as if the lyric wasn't enough!, "We sweat and laugh and scream here, coz life is just a dream here, you know inside you feel right at home, welcome to my nightmare, welcome to my breakdown".Even the title of the ballad 'Only Women Bleed ' was shortened to 'Only Women' when released as a single, because the radio stations didn't like the menstrual connotations!
Alice Coopers' maelovance really scared the crap out of a lot of kids, and we loved it! It was like in the final track, an 'Escape' from the clean cut Donny Osmond, who gets a mention on the song 'Department Of Youth', which was the anthem for Cooper fans in 1975, just as 'Schools Out' had been three years earlier.
A horror movie on wax, even featuring the late great Vincent Price on 'Black Widow', way before Michael Jackson stole the idea on 'Thriller'. Now remastered on CD, a must for any lover of rock music at it's best!