Let me hear you say “I’m a sick Mutha F**ka”!!!! You readers can respond whenever you feel like it but wow, how about that news – Twisted Sister’s seminal release “Stay Hungry” is now officially a quarter of a century old. I think I best leave it as “twenty five years old” because saying it the other way really starts to make me feel older than I am comfortable with realizing but that being said “Happy Anniversary” to this incredible release.
Historically speaking this is the third full on album by those bad boys of Rock and Roll and I am proud to say that by the time that it was released I was already a fan for a few years. I had picked up a copy of “Ruff Cuts” at the local record shop after seeing them on a late night variety program. I was also one of the select few Rockers in my high school so bands like Twisted Sister would come up in discussion since they were a NYC focused group much like KISS and the NY Dolls were. Anyway, that being said, despite this being the third album, this was the album that truly put Sister on the map. I remember being in my Dad’s car and the popular Rock station started playing “We’re Not Gonna Take It” which immediately got turned up to fifteen (exaggerating) and found me singing along with the oh so catchy chorus only seconds into hearing the tune for the very first time. It was a great time to be a young fan into the Metal and Hard Rock. Now back in this bygone era we also had the power of MTV and they played a LOT of Rock and Metal videos. My family didn’t have it yet in our area so a friend that lived in NJ called me up and pretty much described scene after scene to me so I would get a better idea. When I finally saw the hilarious video I knew in my heart that I was prouder than ever to be a fan of Twisted Sister. I was nineteen years old and a musician who had some rebel against the authority frame of mind in his head and while today that might be a terrible thing, you should know that back then all we did was have Rock and Roll attitude and being steadfast in our plans for greatness. If you were in the same age group as I was back then you will likely know exactly what I am talking about.
Now with “Stay Hungry” the Metal fans of the day got two more “radio hits” from the album in “I Wanna Rock” and “The Price” which was the ballad on the release and those heavier stations that were often from the local colleges would play the rest. You were not going to hear “Burn In Hell” on anything other than that or in a friend’s basement. Thinking back on the album on this special date, I think that I learned almost all of it on the drums and would eagerly jam any Sister with musicians that wanted to do it. It was a lot of fun especially since I had the big old monster drum kit. It goes without saying that I had a number of favorite tracks on this album in addition to the big hits but will admit that I was not too crazy about “Horror-Teria” and “The Beast” for some reason. Yes I would let them play through on the album when I was listening to it but I would not find myself as intensely into them as much as I was the others. The album itself sold over 3,000,000 copies and as I had already mentioned was in quite the regular rotation on the traditional radio stations of the day. Back then the only satellites belonged to NASA and since there was no Internet for anyone to share what we were listening to with our friends, you simply told everyone about it and if they trusted you they bought a copy or borrowed yours so they could tape it.
An interesting fact about this body of Metal work is that in 2004 the band got together and re-recorded every single song and re-released it under the title “Still Hungry”. It was one of my first reviews on the PiercingMetal site because we were not all that old yet and I will be completely honest with you in saying that I was not too crazy about that endeavor. You can read my review article by clicking HERE and judge for yourself. Simply put I did not like how it changed the vibe of the original album but again, take a look and feel free to tell me if I was off base on it. At the point of this writing we are still anticipating a full on super duper edition of the original album and I guess this will be out soon if I can trust the press release emails that I see every day. When this finally comes out I promise to get a review onto the core website for your enjoyment. Below are the song titles of the original release. Which ones did it for you?
1. Stay Hungry
2. We’re Not Gonna Take It
3. Burn In Hell
4. Horror-Teria: A) Captain Howdy; B) Street Justice
5. I Wanna Rock
6. The Price
7. Don’t Let Me Down
8. The Beast
That’s all I have for this Music Milestone and while I will close it out with kudos to Twisted Sister, I will say that if you have the chance to see them in action on the stage that you make sure to do so. It’s a rocking good time. I’ve left the comments open for anyone to offer up their thoughts on this incredible Metal release and I look forward to hearing what others thought about it.
Official Website: www.twistedsister.com
The link to the original release on CD has been embedded for your easiest convenience along with the discussed “Still Hungry” album if you wanted to check that out for any reason. Since this post preceded the release of the special edition of “Stay Hungry” I have appended this area so you could order a copy of that as well if you like. My review of that album is on the main PiercingMetal.com site.