CHEAP TRICK - Don’t be fooled by those “elitist” Rock magazine reviews on this prize of a Cheap Trick album called – Woke Up With A Monster. Past reviews from pathetic Rock Music publications, that can’t grasp great Rock ‘N’ Roll bands and their music, just make for incredible comedy. Why drop names here now… we fans know the politically biased Rock magazine I’m referring to. Woke Up With A Monster is a Hard Rock album from 1994 that glows bright amongst the glut of mid 1990′s Rock and Hard Rock album releases, which many seemed to stray away from having any semblance of Classic Rock influence all together.
Amidst competing with the popular Grunge movement of it’s time, Woke Up With A Monster pulsated then and radiates still, in 2010. With eleven songs that beat down the door of stagnant Rock Music and kicks it’s weak ass from sunrise to sundown, this is a Cheap Trick album that sets an example of just how to ROCK STEADY in the face of pop-cultural ignorance of the day.
Phew. That felt kinda gooood. Now, onto this outrageously infectious delight, that is Woke Up With A Monster. The very last song on this album grooves along with a Rockin’ melodic aura that makes me feel like… the album is over? Can’t be! This song is just too cool and it flows through my veins like Rock ‘N’ Roll oxygen! This last song I’m referring to is Love Me For A Minute. Rick Nielsen on guitar plays some crafty licks throughout Love Me For A Minute, giving this song it’s melodic driving appeal. Robin Zander sings this song like it’s the biggest Cheap Trick hit from their career too. A “wow” song that ends this album on a very, very, high note.
Now, if the last song on Woke Up With A Monster is this chewy delicious, just how good are the other songs? For all intents and Rock ‘N’ Roll purposes, the remaining ten songs are a listen and quick study in what Rock greatness is all about, when you don’t try to reinvent the F’n wheel. The song writing, the lyrics, the vocals, the all too irresistible Rock sound of Cheap Trick. Just like comfort food. Sounds so simplistic doesn’t it? If Rock ‘N’ Roll “focus” was a pre-requisite for Cheap Trick to carry on as a band for all these years, they certainly bestowed a monumental ton of it, while creating their 12th studio album, regardless if there was “outside” assistance in song writing.
Despite what may be “read” from “other” reviews on this album over the years… I just don’t buy into the notion that there is a Grunge sound on Woke Up With A Monster. Hell, my ears don’t even hear a hint of it. Even if the band members themselves were to tell me they veered towards a Grunge “feel”, I’m not listening. This is Cheap Trick and it’s as underrated an album as there can possibly ever exist. Metal be thy name.
As fickle and wavering the “general Rock listening public” was back in the mid ’90′s, Woke Up With A Monster did get released. It was during an era where the “flavor of the month club” was buying up whatever the “experts” on MTV and VH1 were hawking. Great Rock Music will always, (here comes the cliche’), stand the test of time. The songs on this Cheap Trick album should easily speak for themselves in 2010, with an almost bone chilling relevancy. Woke Up With A Monster, perhaps, is an album that was sixteen years ahead of it’s time. If you think that sounds far fetched… just listen to The Beatles – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album and try to convince yourself it really was released in 1967.
From the onset, My Gang sets off the Rockin’ tone of this album with all the Cheap Trick familiarities that are so unique to this bands sound. From the tight as cousins rhythm section of Tom Petersson on bass and Bun E. Carlos on drums, to Robin Zanders’s Rock profound vocals, with Rick Nielsen’s song altering guitar play, Cheap Trick certainly walloped my senses with Woke Up With A Monster. The title track being my favorite song doesn’t distract me from the other ten. However, this title song gets more tasty to my ears each time I listen to it… even if I have lost count after all these years.
True and great Rock Music was never meant to be disposable… we’ll leave that disposable stuff to the Pop Bubble Gum Music world. My intent, in getting the word back out on Woke Up With A Monster is to rekindle past fans of this album and shake loose new fans that this Cheap Trick release exists. Regardless of any “out-of-print” or “unavailable” status for Woke Up With A Monster, the digital download world like itunes does exist for albums such as this.
* For more info on Cheap Trick, just click that fantastic link below:
Cheap Trick Are:
Robin Zander - lead vocals
Rick Nielsen - guitars
Tom Petersson - 12 string bass
Bun E. Carlos – drums
Track Listing For Cheap Trick – Woke Up With A Monster:
Woke Up With A Monster
You’re All I Wanna Do
Never Run Out Of Love
Didn’t Know I Had It
Ride The Pony
Let Her Go
Tell Me Everything
Love Me For A Minute
* Woke Up With A Monster was produced by Ted Templeman.
* Woke Up With A Monster was released in 1994, on Warner Bros. Records.
LONG LIVE CHEAP TRICK!