Friday, 1 January 2010

Hurricane - Take What You Want (1985)

1. Take What You Want
2. Girls Are Out Tonight
3. Take Me In Your Arms
4. Hurricane
5. It's Only Heaven
6. Hot & Heavy
7. L.A. Luna*

Hey, does anyone remember Quiet Riot? Of course you all do. But sadly, many people may have no recollection of a mighty L.A. based metal band by the name of Hurricane. I first came across them whilst browsing the internet a few years back and happened upon a bio on Sleaze Roxx. I’d been on eBay and managed to snap up their second record (but first major label release) “Over The Edge” for all of 99p! That album is the one that got them some recognition and airplay; due to the catchy single “I’m On To You”. I’ll admit I wasn’t overly enthralled by the whole record, but I could clearly tell that this was a damn fine bunch of players. Enigma records really dropped the ball with Hurricane back in the 80s, they should have been massive. Instead, Enigma were more interested in pushing white metal groups such as Barren Cross and Stryper….The band were unbelievably overlooked back in the day and had to live in the shadow of another closely associated L.A. act too…

You see, Hurricane contained the two younger brothers of Quiet Riot’s Rudy Sarzo and Carlos Cavazo. Now, you may think that they would’ve been brought together thanks to their older siblings and practically handed a record deal, but this was not the case. Robert Sarzo (guitar) and Tony Cavazo (bass) were actually introduced to each other by QR’s stripy, shouting frontman Kevin DuBrow (RIP) in Los Angeles and the duo decided to form their own band. After recruiting drummer Jay Schellen and supersonic singer Kelly Hansen they hit the local circuit, however there seemed to be no big label interest in the band even with famous family connections and a vast amount of raw talent, so they put out their own mini-album themselves.

The mini-album in question is “Take What You Want” which was produced by Keel and Leatherwolf dial twiddler Kevin Beamish. This record is 100% flawless and it’s fairly safe to state that, every single track could’ve “stormed” the rock charts and “blown” up the radio back in the mid-80s. The funny yet sad thing is that Hurricane were a million times the band that Quiet Riot were. Off went QR around the globe filling arenas and selling millions of albums, even going so far as knocking Michael Jackson off the top of the charts! Yet, Poor little Hurricane couldn’t get a sniff of the big time back in ’85 and it really baffles me. There’s really no justice and genuine love for great music within the recording industry at all. Everything comes down to shifting units and the almighty dollar; it still does to this day as I’m sure you know. But, Hurricane had the looks and the hooks and having heard all their stuff for myself, I can honestly say that they can blast pretty much 90% of the acts I’ve ever heard off the face of the planet! This is mostly down to the voice that Kelly Hansen possesses. His vocal range is fabulous, really rich and powerful pushing Hurricane beyond that of a simple 80s hard rock act to sounding like international megastars. His vocal capabilities give them a huge soul and class not many bands can or will ever match. The tracks; “Take Me In Your Arms”, “Hurricane”, “Hot & Heavy” along with the title cut have such stunning power and melody, that I was left speechless with my brain frazzled into an orgasmal goo. I don’t think I’ve really played a record so much as well. I realised how many times I had hit repeat at the end of each song that I was amazed. I mean, I do play stuff over and over, but it’s usually within the space of days or weeks, not continuously! That to me is a serious mark of excellence, especially for this type of genre. I have literally tons of LPs and CDs by many bands I would consider more favourably than Hurricane, but holy shit does this beat all!

Girls Are Out Tonight” is probably the cut I swoon over most. The opening guitar riff kick major butt and the song overall is a monster rocker, that completely optimizes everything I love about 80s rock and metal. If I was asked to play a track that defined exactly what I love about rock and how it should be performed – I would slap on “Girls Are Out Tonight” in a heartbeat. “It’s Only Heaven” is the only ballad on “Take What You Want”, but it is another masterpiece. The intro and verses are so haunting due to the guitar effect used and the chorus is yet more showcasing of the bands melodic superiority. Now, I know I rant and rave about a lot of stuff, I get all nostalgic and cream over many albums, recommending this and that – But, buy this. Buy it and then try and tell me it isn’t crammed full of unwavering quality and “gale force” metal. Best to follow it up with the bands third release “Slave To The Thrill” too, featuring Doug Aldrich on guitar.

Just to finish, I want to inform you that I’m having this album cover airbrushed onto my new leather biker jacket by a very talented French artist named Danielle Vergne (she’s done jackets for Alice Cooper), so that tells you even more how much I love “Take What You Want”! Like a Hurricane comin’ baby…..


© Flash Metal Circus

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