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on 17 December 2016
I have not read many biographies, but there are a few on my shelf waiting… but of the few I have read this is by far the most lacklustre. The book is presented as a biography of Alice Cooper, but not the man, rather the band or so we are told. If you want to read about Alice the man, then read Golf Monster where he tells his own story.

This is a look then at the formation of a group that shook the music world to its foundations, blasted through the early seventies climbing to the heights before tearing itself apart under the pressure put upon them by the music industry, by the lifestyle they chose to led and many other contributing factors.

It should have been epic, and yet the way it is presented is a nearly bland manner, a simple progression of the band coming together, punctuated by quotes, mostly taken from magazines and articles of the time, not from conversation with those who lived it.

Furthermore, the tale contradicts what has been told by others in other biographies and formats. Now there is more than a slight possibility that Alice (the man) remembers events slightly differently to the way they happened. Although a songwriter, he is a storyteller as well, and is not only likely to change facts to tell a good yarn but the past is a long time ago and he was living a hard, fast life. But it has to be said that many of the facts that Alice has always told are told again in the recent Super Dooper Alice Cooper Blu Ray and match up with a lot of what Shep Gorden says in his own Super Mensch release.

Despite being about the band Alice Cooper it breaks away when the band splits, and seems only to give lip service to the other four members of the group. It briefly mentions the formation of the Billion Dollar Babies Group, their first album and the reason it vanished into obscurity, but it does not really talk about the bands solo projects, the problems that beset Michael Bruce’s first solo album – which is superb, Dennis Dunaway’s various projects over the years, and indeed how Neil Smith continued the rock n’ roll dream while becoming a real estate agent at the same time. It also misses out on the entire battle Glen Buxton faced with his demons, just giving the end of a tale, how he became a farmer distanced from every part of his rock past. There are whole life times to be told, and we get Alice’s.

Or rather we get a skimming over the top, basically told through record releases and tours, with the might-have-beens. There is much more that could have been told and for what it was purported to be the book misses it all, mostly telling stories that have been told before, in a different way in a manner that is as close to bland as is possible.

One of the biggest and most interesting omissions comes (and in many ways it is understandable) when it talks about Alice’s relapse into alcoholism. It is a story that has been told before, and one that Alice seemed to use as a lesson, that to a recovering alcoholic even a sip of wine can be enough to relapse completely. But Alice recently revealed that he stumbled into replacing the alcohol addiction with a drug addiction, something that he talks about quite frankly and painfully on Super Dooper Alice Cooper. Even if this is something that is being misremembered on Alice’s part (I’m sure it isn’t) it is something that needs looking at.

There are some stories that are told that are new, especially toward the end and these do make interesting reading, but as a whole I feel the book misses the target it set for itself and could have been so much more.
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on 29 May 2013
As a great fan of the original Alice Cooper Group I stil learnt a lot from this excellent book, especially about Alice's early family life which I found fascinating.

It does a great job of objectively charting the original group's rise and fall and is essential reading for any Alice fan, but particularly those that prefer the original group circa 68-74. Buy this and Alice's 'Golf Monster' autobiography.
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on 12 September 2017
good read.big alice fan.
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on 6 November 2015
Love Alice Cooper, not afraid to face up to his mistakes and a nice guy
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on 19 September 2013
Not really worth of reading if you knew Alice before. Suitable maybe for the young. Would have needed more about the music and lyrics or Alice the private person. And much less about the "shock" value.
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on 19 September 2014
Not a bad capture of Alice. Only problem I found was the book itself it literally fell apart. Got it to read on Holiday, did that, and ended up leaving it there wrapped in elastic bands!
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on 7 May 2013
a must for any alice fan good pics
up to date 2012 hard to put down good read and pics :)
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on 1 September 2014
Brilliant
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on 12 December 2012
This is a Christmas gift, looks interesting will review ago after Christmas, this was on a wish list so I think it will be ok
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on 17 October 2012
I really enjoyed this, if you want to read about Alice himself you might be better reading his golf monster book, but if you want to read about the Alice cooper band (before he hijacked the name for himself) then this is a must read it's all in here from the band members early days, signing to Frank Zappa's straight label right through to the original bands break up in 74'. we then move on to Alice as a solo artist from welcome to my nightmare in 75' through the forgotten albums and the lost years of the early 80s to the full blown comeback in 1986, right up to the present day, this is a cracking book, my only gripes are the lack of info about his touring band members as the likes of Ken mary, Jonathan mover, Jimmy degrasso Derek sherinian, Pete friesen and Damon johnson etc etc don't get a mention at all (i know it's about Alice but if you mention a tour why not name who played on it) and also the latter albums from Brutal planet to welcome 2 my nightmare just seem to get brushed over in a few pages, other than that this is a cracking read and is a great addition to anyone's collection.
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