Tag Archives: don dokken

“The Definitive Rock Collection” by Dokken

Artist: Dokken
Title: “The Definitive Rock Collection”
Label: Rhino Entertainment
Release Date: 4/26/2006
Genre: Hard Rock/Heavy Metal
Rating: 4/5

For most of my years as a fan of the Metal I have always been able to appreciate the talents and contributions made to the genre by the guys in Dokken. Let’s face it, even though they were often unfairly dumped into the category of your average “Hair Metal” band, you have to agree that the guys clearly delivered the goods and brought a lot more to the table with their brand of Melodic Heavy Metal than most of their peers. That being said and understood makes looking over this particular Greatest Hits collection a little easier because from beginning to end there are just so many good songs to raise the horns about. The band released a “Very Best of Dokken” back in 1999 and every track from that release is presented here with the exception of the Don Dokken solo track of “Mirror, Mirror”. If you as a buyer of this CD can live without that particular tune, you can easily swap that collection for this one and make the older version a present to some young Metal head in training. This collection is a double CD affair and features thirty of the bands most essential numbers and makes the “Definitive” labeling rather appropriate.
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Poison & Dokken @ PNC Bank Arts Center (8/12/2008)

Poison continued the summer shows with an appearance in Holmdel, NJ at the PNC Bank Arts Center. This go round would bring both Dokken and Sebastian Bach along for the ride and we made sure to be a part of the fun in order to bring you the scoop. Scroll past the logo below to be brought to our article to see our thoughts and photos of the bands.

Logo - Poison

Artist: Poison
Venue: PNC Bank Arts Center (Holmdel, NJ)
Opener: Dokken, Sebastian Bach
Date: 8/12/2008
Label: Koch Records

Over the last couple of years I have not been able to say that the summer was drawing to a close until I had attended one of the Poison “shed” concerts that always seem to come around these parts around the same time each year. For me, these shows were only a recent bit of fun to attend as I grew up entrenched in a much darker and a lot heavier type of Metal. Based on this fact I had to say that any love for Poison and how they did things was always kept on the low end of the conversation. Of course as time went on and my musical interests expanded I grew to appreciate just how much fun they were in concert and how catchy and relevant their music was when it came to living ones life in good spirits and with a smile. Poison had done some great summer shows over the last couple of years as well and my first go round was checking them out with Cinderella and the following year with Ratt. This time around would find not only the eighties staple Dokken, but also a performance from Skid Row’s former front man Sebastian Bach. Surely this was going to be a rocking night and Bach would be coming on first. The adventure was also taking place at the PNC Bank Arts Center, where I had just seen the Metal Masters tour the previous week.
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“Lightning Strikes Again” by Dokken

Artist: Dokken
Title: “Lightning Strikes Again”
Label: Rhino Entertainment
Release Date: 5/13/2008
Genre: Hard Rock
Rating: 4/5

When you think of the bands that really made an impact on the Big Metal scene of the eighties you just know that one of the first names to come to mind is going to be none other than Dokken. Since their inception in 1976, the band came into Rock prominence with their debut release “Breaking The Chains” (1983) and by the time their sophomore release “Tooth And Nail” (1984) hit, the band had seemed to reach stratospheric heights and their videos were running rampant on that new medium called MTV while conventional radio was welcoming some of their tracks in a regular rotation. The got lumped into the Glam Metal title but they were clearly a little deeper than many of those bands based on the level of technical ability displayed by guitarist George Lynch and the overall heaviness of their material. Over the years the band has changed somewhat in terms of lineup, as Lynch and Pilson are no longer a part of the group, but singer Don Dokken remains in place with original drummer “Wild” Mick Brown and together along with guitarist Jon Levin and journeyman bassist Barry Sparks have delivered “Lightning Strikes Again”. For those only coming into the picture now and wondering how the band could continue without the firepower of Lynch well let me be the first to say that Jon Levin kicks ass and has been doing justice to the bands classics on the live stage for a number of years. As far as bassist Sparks goes, well he counts UFO and Ted Nugent among his many credits so you know he is more than a capable player for anything Don and company can dish out. The title of the album is also fantastic for on “Lightning Strikes Again” we are finding a Dokken that has returned to the form that many of us first enjoyed in the band. It’s by no means a retro-album but instead one that plays upon the sounds and textures that made them one of the favorites and brings them together with a crunching vibe for the new millennium.
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“Unchain The Night” by Dokken

Artist: Dokken
Title: “Unchain The Night”
Label: Rhino Records
Release Date: 3/13/2007
Genre: Hard Rock/Heavy Metal
Rating: 3.5/5

In 1985 the home video for eighties Hard Rock sensation Dokken entitled “Unchain The Night” was unleashed on the Metal fans of the world. The VHS Tape (anyone remember those?) included eight of the bands videos from their hit singles of the time and also featured very candid footage of the group on tour, onstage and just having fun in the towns and hotels that they would visit. Historically the group was touring in support of their second platinum album “Under Lock And Key”. The “Old School” fan that I am remembers these videos very fondly and not only from the tape which I owned and is still buried somewhere, but from when they first aired on both MTV and also the U68 “Power Hour”. The memories come flooding back to me as I watched this DVD and I had to laugh aloud at the fact that I recalled these videos as being so “cool” at the time while realizing just how cheesy they actually were. I was young, but so was the format of music video and its super powered grip was not yet at full strength. Dokken as a band was a guilty pleasure for many Hard Rock and Metal fans as while they had the suave crooning singer in Don, there was also blistering guitar from George Lynch as well as pounding drums from “Wild” Mick Brown. The level of appeal the band had was able to snare fans of the melodic and the heavy as well.
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“From Conception: Live 1981” by Dokken

Artist: Dokken
Title: “From Conception: Live 1981”
Label: Rhino Records
Release Date: 3/13/2007
Genre: Hard Rock/Heavy Metal
Rating: 3.5/5

Thanks to the folks at Rhino Records listeners that found their love of Hard Rock and Heavy Metal in the eighties will truly appreciate this one. As the music of “Live 1981 From Conception” by Dokken starts spinning in their CD player they are taken back in a time warp . The hard core Dokken fan will immediately raise their eyebrows knowing that the band would not be signed until a couple of years later and not release a live album until 1988’s “Beast From The East”. These are the facts that make such a release all the more special. In the liner notes by Don Dokken himself he states that as he searched through master tapes for music to be used on an anniversary edition of “Breaking The Chains”, he would come upon reels that simply said “Dokken Live”. These reels would have performances of the band that were recorded before they were signed as the group searched for a record deal, and believe me friends this is one terrific find. The set performed for this concert is loaded with vintage classics from the bands earliest years as well as a number of tracks that that would never actually make it onto the bands catalog of releases. For the most part these songs are a mystery even to the bands most devout supporters. Their presence alone makes the release something that the fans will really enjoy. As they perform, the listener will find a band that is both young, hungry and really showing just how capable they are of the success that will find them not too far in the future.
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