VINNIE VINCENT INVASTION – As years pass, Hard Rock and Heavy Metal CD’s seem to stack up. Many of them unfortunately can get pushed to the side, it is a reality that most of us Metalheads out there share. I only have one set of ears and so many hours in the day, therefore, listening to new releases and older issues can make for quite the Metal balancing act. Step in please… Vinnie Vincent Invasion – All Systems Go. Released in 1988, this was the second and last album from Vinnie Vincent Invasion.

Recently, Best Metal Buddy Scott Coverdale, passed on to me the All Systems Go CD, to feed into my Heavy Metal hungry mind. In Scott’s ever challenging endeavor to consistently research Hard Rock and Heavy Metal history, digging up this album has proved to be quite the Metal deed. This is yet another 1980’s Heavy Metal release that I still have, stashed away on cassette and never upgraded to CD or Mp3… until now, thanks to Coverdale. By the way… Coverdale doesn’t “do” cassettes. Go figure. Maybe I’m just a stubborn Old School corn-dog after all.

Oh, yeah… let’s get into All Systems Go. I’ll readily admit, it has been a very, very, long time since I listened to this Vinnie Vincent Invasion album. That’s just the way it’s turned out. Being the “huge” Mark Slaughter and Slaughter fan I am… shame on my Metal soul. Being the lead vocalist on this album proved to be Mark Slaughter’s career breakout and he sings the daylights out of these songs. Dana Strum plays a thick and mean-ass bass on this album too. Bobby Rock on drums sounds dynamite… as always.

Then there’s Vinnie Vincent on guitar. Really, what can I say? Vinnie Vincent sure can play, that’s damn certain. His signature is all over the songs on All Systems Go and rightfully so, this former KISS guitarist is one of the best axe wielders from that amazing 80’s era of Heavy Metal. Really, that’s how I feel, regardless of how few albums Vinnie Vincent may have appeared on back then. To my ears, Vinnie made the most of what music he created and/or played on with KISS and of course, his own band.

This lineup of Vinnie Vincent Invasion had that 100% “look” of Hair Metal back in ’88, only this album really doesn’t have that stereotypical sound of that genre, in my Metal opinion. I always point directly at the music when defining what “genre” a band fits into. Between Mark Slaughter’s vocals and Vinnie Vincent’s guitar, it’s all pure Heavy Metal to me.

As I listen to All Systems Go now, the thought of what could have been certainly does cross my Metal mind. Needless to say, it’s the albums that do exist from Vinnie Vincent Invasion… that matters most. Besides, I have never been very good with what ifs? anyways. The ever Hard Rockin’ and super melodic Slaughter was eventually born from this Vinnie Vincent Invasion lineup, as fine an offshoot I could ever wish for.

Scott Coverdale likens All Systems Go to unearthing a gem that has been buried away for twenty years. I can’t conveniently argue with him on that analogy. All Systems Go, twenty years later, still is a super inviting album of late ’80’s Heavy Metal, which is undoubtedly loaded with all the melodic fun and arena color of that very loud and proud decade… that I love to revisit time and again.

VINNIE VINCENT INVASION (As they appeared on All Systems Go):

Mark Slaughter – vocals

Vinnie Vincent – guitars & backing vocals

Dana Strum – bass & backing vocals

Bobby Rock – drums

Track Listing For All Systems Go:

Ashes To Ashes

Dirty Rhythm

Love Kills

Naughty Naughty


Let Freedom Rock

That Time Of Year

Heavy Pettin’


Deeper and Deeper


The Meltdown (Instrumental/Bonus CD Track)

Ya Know I’m Pretty Shot (Instrumental/Bonus CD Track)




  1. Ha ha! good find – I was just rummaging through my vinyl collection and unearthed two copies of this gem.

    *I’ll admit though, it’s been a while since I heard it on CD.

    Mr. Cusano was/is the shredder.

    I got to see him with KISS in Indiana.

    Midwest Concert trivia: it was on the very last date of the tour too!
    03.17.84 in Evansville,IN. – Roberts Stadium.

    After that, he was outta’ there…

    Love some of the “Creatures of the Night” LP (even though Ace is shown on the LP).

    Some of “Lick it Up” was cool (Gene blew my ears out and made my stomach quesy) -due to the massive low-end during his (in)famous bass solo.

    Rock on!


    • metalodyssey Says:

      The “Creatures Of The Night” scenario is so bizarre to me… ‘nuthin like giving credit where credit is due with the album cover!?

      I think there are many of us out there, who wish/would like to see a Vinnie Vincent comeback right about now. Heck, what better time than now with the huge resurgence of Old School leading the charge!

      Old School Stone

  2. I’ll start off by saying I really liked Vinnie during his short time in KISS. I think he was a good fit. Creatures of the night is easily the most underrated album of their career. Lick it up might be my favorite non-make-up album.
    Okay, the reality is VVI were horrible. The first album was Vinnie going off on a big soulless wankfest. The second album is even worse though. Even less direction and more tuneless meandering. I have had the misfortune of hearing both albums in say the last three years. I had not either in a while and gave them a chance. My ears suffered greatly for giving them another chance.
    I’ll describe this album as finding cat puke behind the couch after it has sat there for a year drying and acculating mold, fuzz and other assorted nastiness.

  3. I have to agree with Metal Mark on this one. I’m not a fan of the legions of shredders that hair metal thrust upon us and Vinnie Vincent is a particularly serious offender. However, Kiss constrained him enough that his lack of direction didn’t get entirely out of hand (or maybe it was ankh that controlled him). Once he was on his own though, all bets were off. The first VVI barely had songs. It was more like filler around guitar solos. All Systems Go was even worse, because the solos weren’t even exciting from the point of view of sheer exercises and the “songs” were even less interesting.

  4. I like the VVI albums to an extent. It’s true that Vinnie just went off into his own guitar world on these albums but there’s still some good tracks on both releases.

    I was actually just reading some article somewhere on Vinnie Vincent last week. I really wish we could at least get to hear the stuff that was never properly released. C’mon, Vinnie, stop filing lawsuits and start making music again!

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