The Music Lounge

Van Halen in 2015

Van Halen to release new album in 2015….

vanhalen325Van Halen…now there was a band, there still is, but how does it compare to the younger, sleeker versions of decades gone by? The history of the band could not be more documented if it tried. Throughout the years the band members personal and professional relationships, their drug and alcohol abuse has been the stuff of near legend. The public and media alike clamoured for news of fall-outs, reinventions and collapses and the band never let us down.

Looking at Van Halen in 2015 it is worth remembering that three of the four members have been playing this game since the late seventies when their unique music took everyone by surprise. And unique it was. There was nobody playing a guitar like Eddie Van Halen, gone were the long, over indulgent solos of rock gods past and in came short, melodic, in your face and to the point finger taps and complex structures which fitted the songs perfectly. EVH was the new Hendrix, such was the reach of his influence, whilst Dave Lee Roth defined the role and look of a rock lead singer.

As I listen to Van Halen Mark? in 2015 I wondered what category of music they fall into now; AOR?, Heavy Metal? American Rock? Not really. But then, did they ever sound like anyone else? Could they ever be categorised? No, but this new material falls short of former glories, it’s good but not great. Different to the others but an older, wearier version of what went before. It’s listenable but forgettable in a way in which they never once were.

It’s good to see them enjoying life and music and fooling around for the camera’s, but creatively, that road seems to have taken it out of them.

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