2004 was a big summer for me, but no event stands out as much as a seemingly innocent yard party at my rotten attorney's lakehouse. As a rich fuck, he has lots of shit; as a great guy, he often unloads old records on me and buys drinks. Away from the party, in the cool quiet of his living room, I came across Blue Murder's self-titled debut. Shaking me by the shoulders, he implored me to take the record and play the shit out of it. With a laugh, I agreed to.
Well here we are in 2008 and conservative estimates indicate no fewer than 400 spins of Blue Murder's 1989 triumph at HooM! HQ. Produced by Bob Rock at the height of his monster-rock powers*, Blue Murder's nine songs include seven (!!) home runs -- and among those two grand slams off the scoreboard -- powered by John Sykes' fluid, UK-style shredding, the farty bass of Tony Franklin (femmullet alert), and drums so enormous they have their own congressman (courtesy of Carmine Motherfucking Appice). Like Rock, Sykes was fresh off a big win (Whitesnake's mega-success) but also a big loss (his unceremonious firing at the hands of David Coverdale); regardless, an emboldened Sykes turns in awesome vocal performances to match his thunderous songs and ass-tight backing band. Thanks, John. Happy 49th birthday buddy (yesterday). We love you.
Geffen Records 1989
*Rock had just completed The Cult's colossal Sonic Temple; following Blue Murder, Rock commenced work on Motley Crue's Dr. Feelgood. His last great production was David Lee Roth's A Little Ain't Enough in 1991 before the whole Shitallica thing.