ADRIAN DODZ – Adrian Dodz [Digitally Remastered +3]
Requested by many, here it is the one and only album by ADRIAN DODZ, the American Melodic Hard Rock / AOR band, remastered for the first time including 3 bonus tracks.
In the late ‘80s and early ‘90s there was a ‘buzz band’ that used to play at all the top New Jersey clubs, and their forays into New York hotspots such as the China Club, the Limelight, and The Cat Club always brought out scores of industry people.
It was the heyday of hair metal; hairspray, gang vocals and spandex were everywhere. Adrian Dodz was in the middle of the scene, and were getting raves in rock rags across the country.
The group had its genesis in central New Jersey, and hit long forgotten clubs such as the Raritan Manor in Somerville, the Playpen in Sayreville and The Show Place in Dover. They also played in such venerable mainstays of the past and current scene, such as the Stone Pony in Asbury Park.
The Dodz boys recorded constantly, and eventually put out a CD on Rock Dream Records. The 500 CDs quickly sold out. With shows with bands like Skid Row, Bullet Boys, Dirty Looks, Prophet and others, the hype grew until the record labels started to take notice.
After signing a deal with Epic Records, the band headed into the studio to record with David Prater, who was working with groups such as Dream Theater and Firehouse. The sessions were somewhat antagonistic, with David splitting the members apart and working with them individually, and not letting any of them hear the whole result until it was done.
Of course, when Don Grierson, the now-legendary vice-president of Epic, heard the new songs, his comment was, “This doesn’t sound like the band I signed.”
After the rejection and the contract drop, the band fell apart, the music scene changed, and some of the members started other projects; singer Fred Dodds formed his own band, while drummer Joey Nevolo played with many acclaimed bands, including the heavy progressive greats Shadow Gallery.
There were occasional reunions, including getting together to do a song on the Kiss tribute CD Kiss Fans Salute Kiss, which garnered rave reviews in Kiss fanzines.
They also did several songs for a Cheap Trick tribute CD, hooking up with Angel singer Frank DiMino, Twisted Sister guitarist Eddie Ojeda, and Starz guitarist Richie Ranno for the sessions.
In the late ’90s, most band members reunited under the Silent Witness moniker (in fact, their original name was that before Adrian Dodz).
Fast forward to just a few years ago…
All of a sudden, the original Adrian Dodz CD started showing up on eBay. For some unknown reason, the CD had been bootlegged, and an underground following developed in Europe. Some of the original CDs went for as high as $120.
References were made to other bands sounding like Adrian Dodz, and being influenced by them.
The band decided it might be time to do something together again.
With a wealth of unreleased material, and several labels in Europe that specialize in melodic rock interested in re-issuing the album, they decided the time was right.
But in order to make it special, they wanted to include a couple unreleased tracks, but that wasn’t enough. So they decided to record a new song for the release.
To make the reunion complete, they got back in touch with their original co-producer, Alan Douches of West West Side music. Alan has gone on to become a major force in the world of CD mastering, and is one of the most credited mastering engineers in the world.
But he made time for the project. “If you’re going to do it, we might as well do it right,” he relates. “We wanted to make it as true to what it was as we could. I actually think it might sound better than it did originally.”
German label Schmankerl Records officially reissued the album with the additional tracks, plus a fresh punchy remaster.
We have here a superb collection of pure second harl of the ’80s Melodic Hard Rock / AOR, with all the magic of the era. Rockers like opener ‘Long Nights’, the catchy ‘Bad Love’, the Foreigner-influenced ‘Wrapped Around Her Finger’ or the groovy ‘One Night Lover’ (King Kobra-like) are sure fire winners.
But the highlights for me are the awesome, monster AOR songs ‘Don’t Let A Good Thing Slip Away’ (a terrific midtempo), and the epic ‘Somebody Beat Me To The Punch’ with all that ‘action movie soundtrack’ feel soooo ’80s. I love it.
The bonuses on this reissue are great as well; ‘What Can You Do’ is killer groovy melodic rocker in the Hardline vein, ‘Hell on Strings / Victim of Illusion’ hail more to early ’80s AOR (there’s Prophet members as guest), while ‘On My Way’ is a mature melodic rock midtempo with a bit Night Ranger feel.
Regarded as a cult classic by many, “Adrian Dodz remastered +3′ is a must in your American Melodic Hard Rock / AOR collection. The remaster is really, really good, and while the disc originally appeared via Schmankerl Records, later was distributed & sold by YesterRock Records.
A Must Have.
01 – Long Nights
02 – Wrapped Around Her Finger
03 – Don’t Let A Good Thing Slip Away
04 – On Down The Line
05 – One Night Lover
06 – Bad Love
07 – Somebody Beat Me To The Punch
08 – Kamikazi
09 – What Can You Do
10 – Hell on Strings / Victim of Illusion
11 – On My Way
Fred Dodds – lead vocals
John Bushnell – guitars
Hal Selzer – bass
Joey Nevolo – drums
Lance Stark – drums on 09
Dean Fasano, Bobby Bandeira & Joe Zujkowski (Prophet)
BUY IT !