ENUFF Z’NUFF – Strength [Rock Candy Remastered & Reloaded +2]
Rock Candy Records has ‘Remastered & Reloaded‘ the two first major label releases of ENUFF Z’NUFF, both really enjoyable pieces of melodic hard rock music. “Strength” was the second, and one of the band’s best.
“Strength”, the band’s eagerly expected sophomore album, was another astounding piece of work. Recorded in 1991, the band threw everything and the kitchen sink into their songs, producing a record that, for many, actually eclipsed their excellent debut.
It was an album that showed maturity and depth, without losing the essence of their sound; a compelling mash-up of the Bon Jovi and Cheap Trick. All songs show a band in songwriting heaven, driven to extraordinary highs by Donnie Vie’s sensational and plaintiff voice. Captured in the prime of creativity, their energy and inventiveness knowing no bounds.
At the start of their career, Enuff Z’Nuff were touted as the rightful heirs to Cheap Trick thanks to their uncanny talent for combining alluring pop melodies with controlled hard rock crunch. And where the Trick imbued their initially innocent-seeming pop gems with a dark, sinister edge, Enuff Z’Nuff, in accordance with their environment (late-’80s pop-metal), spun their music with a liberal dose of decadence and debauchery.
Indeed, raunchy rockers such as “Heaven or Hell” and “Missing You” (like the bulk of their self-titled debut) stick close to this formula. But “Strength” soon introduces an entirely deeper side of the band, with lush string arrangements and chorused vocals contrasting perfectly with the ascending and descending chords of the title track.
From here on out, anything goes, as the foursome rip through racy hard rock gems like “In Crowd” and “The World Is a Gutter,” then relax into stunning power ballads like “Goodbye” and “Blue Island.”
The material which lies between is even better, and the two tracks which kick off the album’s second half, “Mother’s Eyes” and “Baby Loves You,” are simply unbelievable melodic poppy songs.
‘Strength’ was really well recorded back in a day, and this Rock Candy treatments not only adds a deeper low end sound, but also 2 great bonus tracks, both recorded during the same sessions (and originally b-sides). Especially “Let It Go” is one of my favorite Enuff Z’Nuff songs ever.
01 – Heaven Or Hell
02 – Missing You
03 – Strength
04 – In Crowd
05 – Holly Wood Ya
06 – The World Is A Gutter
07 – Goodbye
08 – Long Way To Go
09 – Mother’s Eyes
10 – Baby Loves You
11 – Blue Island
12 – The Way Home / Coming Home
13 – Something For Free
14 – Time To Let You Go
15 – Kitty
16 – Let It Go
Donnie Vie – lead vocals, guitars, keyboards
Chip Z’Nuff – bass guitar, guitars, vocals
Derek Frigo – lead guitar
Vik Foxx – drums
Johnny Frigo – violin and viola (Tracks 3 & 7)
Dennis Karmazyn – cello (Tracks 3 & 7)
Paul Lani – mellotron (Tracks 3 & 12)
BUY IT !