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“Anthology ’83-‘89” by White Lion

Artist: White Lion
Title: “Anthology ’83-‘89”
Label: Deadline Records
Release Date: 6/27/2006
Genre: Hard Rock
Rating: 2/5

As someone who grew up in Brooklyn and was a frequent patron of L’Amour the Rock Capitol, I felt that the idea of a White Lion Anthology would be something to look forward to and also something that would be really enjoyable. The reason behind this was because to many people like me White Lion were the hometown heroes and when they played the club you could not get in anywhere. It was over the top Hard Rock power with one of the best guitarists you could hope to hear; Vito Bratta was our own Eddie Van Halen and actually Mike Tramp was our David Lee Roth in most cases. Drumming was Greg D’Angelo and bass was handled by James Lomenzo with the result being some truly memorable Hard Rock with a commercial edge that gained them tremendous success. The band released three studio albums and a best of compilation on Atlantic Records and thus far we have not seen these albums remastered. This fact is a shame since the band also had a strong presence on MTV and made the label quite a bit of money. The Anthology would have been perfect if it actually included music from these 3 albums but instead we get unreleased versions and outtakes. While I am not sure of the reasoning behind this, it seems clearly obvious that perhaps no access was granted to the original music in order to release it in this fashion. This would only leave the outtakes and demos for the tracks available. The oddest part of the release was its total exclusion of real versions of the bands debut, “Fight To Survive”. While “Pride” was the groups major label debut, the smaller independent label Grand Slamm released the bands true first album and it was killer. We do have acoustic versions of songs from this release but they are terrible, and the re-do of “Broken Heart” was beyond dismal. It especially took the fire out of the original song, so you can imagine how bad an outtake of this disaster could be. I cannot honestly recommend this CD for anyone more than the staunchest of band supporters and even they should be warned about it. The inside foldout (there’s not even a book with a good amount of photos to enjoy on this) finds Tramp lining out where blocks of songs came from.
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