David Lee Roth

Golden-maned rock god or balding burned-out dunderhead?
*special introductory paragraph!
*Crazy From The Heat EP
*Eat 'Em And Smile
*Sonrisa Salvaje
*A Little Ain't Enough
*Your Filthy Little Mouth
*DLR Band
*Diamond Dave

David Lee Roth was the sexy acrobatic singer/master showman for Van Halen until 1985 when, at the peak of their career, Diamond Dave either quit or was fired depending on whom you ask and what time of the day you're asking. After the firing, his solo career shot up like a rocket before tumbling down in a rainstorm of eels. These days, he's mostly trying to get Eddie Van Hefflen (Van Halen! Whatever! You look MAH-velous!) to let him back in (which he may actually have agreed to do by the time you read this). I think the guy's a hoot. Even when the music sucks, he's still good for a laugh -- and his Crazy From The Heat book is entertaining as a shoe! Have you ever seen an entertaining shoe? All dancing around and charming the ladies? Then sir, you've never met Marcel Marceau's hilarious "Bip" character!

Reader Comments

JSALDATE@mediaone.net (Joseph Saldate)
Hi I just wanted to be the first to post a reader comment for a change.

Bob Royale
A Little Ain't Enough was the first TAPE I ever bought for myself, and when I bought both that again with Skyscraper this weekend for $4 combined at a thrift store, I was ready for a little trip down memory lane and some laughing at the cheesiness. Y'know what? Fuck everybody, this is one of the most charismatic frontmen I've ever heard in rock. Yeah, some of the songs suck (really, some STINK), but as a whole- I like this guy. He rarely goes down the pretentious road, and I can get into that. Hotdog and a Shake & Hammerhead Shark can duel it out for the most hamfisted sex metaphors of all time- when the Ying Yang Twins learn how to write a song that rocks that hard they are welcome to the party. I really, really love DLR's "Fuck'em all" mentality though- the guy just wants to rock out!

Crazy From The Heat EP - Warner Bros. 1985.
Rating = 8

A total lark. This was Dave doing a side project Vegas schtick thing while he was still employed by the law firm of Messrs. Van Halen and Anthony. All four songs were cover tunes - three great and one atrocious. You know "California Girls" (by The Beach Boys, a band I'm loving more and more everyday -- godDAMN I love that "Fun Fun Fun" song!!!! And "Kokomo"? WOW!!!!) and "Just A Gigolo" (a song that my fiancee insists is "Henry's song!," Henry of course being my four-month old Blue German Shepherd, though I'm not exactly sure why it would be his song, he being much more interested in kibble than either women or money), but do you know "Coconut Grove"? It's very, very pretty! Dave showing his sensitive cover tune side. "Easy Street," however, is a horrid Dan Hartman song that would've fit right in on Your Filthy Little Trou, to be reviewed exactly six years from this moment.

Huh? No, not the Dan Hartman from The Edgar Winter Group!!! Is that really what you think of me????

Huh? No, it's not the theme song from that hilarious Loni Anderson television program from the mid-80s! Who in this land do you fancy me towards being as?

Eww, I just noticed something. Edgar Winter plays on three of these songs. Which means that "Easy Street" probably IS by that very same Dan Hartman. My sweet lord. Hare krishna. Ooh my lord.

Reader Comments

netservice22@yahoo.com (Joe)
Hey dude..

Easy Street is a rocking tune. It is so Dave. I can't imagine why you don't like it. And the sax solo is cool.. and Dave's screams towards the end of the track are classic.

Granted, I was never a huge Van Halen fan, but I also never realized how much Diamond Dave brought to the show until he left that band. They haven't sounded right since. He just fit.

Not that I listen to his solo records -- when he got away from Eddie's influence, it's like McCartney without Lennon. All Dave's worst, most clownish cabaret tendencies take over.

Man, what he does to California Girls here ... unforgiveable.

Damned Hoosier, anyway.

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* Eat 'Em And Smile - Warner Bros. 1986. *
Rating = 10

Best funkin' Van Halen album since 1984. Rocks harder, catchier, louder, diverser, and just as complexly as 5150 or anything since. Dave has pulled together a group of players with more skill (though admittedly less ingenuity) than Eddie and his poons -- including Steve Vai, who got started in the business by transcribing a bunch of Frank Zappa's ridiculously complicated guitar solos and playing them back for the man. He was NOT an Eddie wannabe - he was just a guy who could play any goddamned way he wanted to. So if and when Mr. Roth said to him, "Play like Eddie - the kids'll dig it!," he did so with flair and really really REALLY fast speed. And bassist Billy Sheehan certainly tore the rooftops off of lowly Mr. Michael Anthony. I don't know drums from Band's Dickhat though, so I'm not going to comment on that.

Ten songs here, running the Tailhook gamut from speedy punk-metal to goodtime VH metal rock to blues grunge to (of course) Vegasy Dave's Showtime Of Jollitude Yeah. Three of the songs are cover tunes, including the fiercest version of "Tobacco Road" I've ever heard - and that includes that half-a-mile-an-hour version that Spooky Tooth did!!!!! Even when the melodies seem slightly lacking ("Bump And Grind" is none-too-intriguing, and the cover "I'm Easy" is just your basic foot-snappin' feet-tappin' music hall jive), Mr. Vai pulls out all the stops from his guitar fret to keep your ears glued to your eyelids. Just notes and runs and guitars talkin' everywhicholdassbuttway, as I'm sure you know because you remember the hits "Yankee Rose" and "Goin' Crazy," right? I said RIGHT????? RIGHT???? RIGHT???? Rich, make these words really big - RIGHT???? RIGHT???? Rich, make 'em blue now - RIGHT???? RIGHT??? HeyRich, make 'em blink all the colors of the rainbow, spin around and shoot out little flames - RIGHT???? RIGHT????

But I don't know how to do that, Mark!! How about a nice game of chess?

In a perfect world, this would get an 8.6, but this is my topsy-turvy world so I'm giving it a 10. What the hell other DLR solo album would qualify for a score that ridiculously overinflated??????


Reader Comments

crayfish@shaw.ca (Einus Beers)
When my girlfriend (wife now, never let go of a girl who can pick music like this) bought me this album, I didn't know who Billy Sheehan was, but I was TOTALLY BLOWN AWAY by the fact that not only was DLR successful in finding a guitar player who could outplay Eddie, his bass player could do it to. Songs like Shy Boy and Elephant Gun can only be described as musical masturbation for the guitar and bass, but after the 3rd or 4th song, I got kind of tired of the driving budda budda of a drummer who sounded like he just learned how to use a double kick drum. a must have album for any guitar/bass player!

mataquaz@sbcglobal.net (James Hippie)
Diamond Dave also released a version of Eat 'Em and Smile en Espanol, which kicks the shit out of the assless-chaps and dirty metal-whore pussy stink of the English version. ¿Por qué, David? ¿Por qué no puede liberar usted toda su esperma y musings sabrosa de Rogain en el español para todos los porteros frustrados de Guatamalan y vendedores de producto de autopista para golpear cabezas grasientas a? ¡Hablo acerca del Yanqui Subió, la Mark Prindle! ¡Inclínese hacia abajo antes de la cebaza calvo brillante de Diamante Dave, usted mercaderes inútiles de pene!

jhaynes@venlog.com (Jim Haynes)
First off, Eat em and Smile is Roth's best solo effort. Second, Steve Vai was only hired because he could play Vh songs.Vai cant right like Eddie.Vai is awesome and so is Ed,but if I had a choice of them in their prime. I would take Edward.Billy Sheenan is overkill on the bass. He is good, but its too much. If you wanna play like that grab a guitar(sounds better). Then the drums, Alex is all around better. Alex is probably the most underrated drummer ever...Eat em and smile gets a 6 on my list. Best song Yankee Rose. This album does not even belong in the same section as Halen's first 6 period...

eat em and smile ; hands down is an awesome album. i'm a huge van halen fan and am pretty good with a giutar and would like to say STEVE VAI IS A BETTER GUITARIST THAN EDDIE VAN HALEN. eat 'em and smile is packed full of good music and fun songs and is as good as any VH album. have you heard any of steve vai's solo stuff? the man is right up ther with joe satriani. too bad he got away from DLR.

thanks for those comments on steve vai! if wanna know more about him and his music, pick up g3 live in concert w/ joe satriani and eric johnson oh and by the way while you are at it but some vai albums like passion and warfare with that song he played in concerts it's called answers it may weird you out at first but in the end you hear the electric power of vai 's guitar soars you into space ! my sweetie tifa lockheart covered the song and godamn! if this not a fantabulos cover well fuck you! her solos are sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo sweet! i make love to her because of it and i 'm damn proud of her! thanks!

In terms of sheer technique- Steve Vai and Billy Sheehan are better musicians than Eddie and Mike Anthony- but who fucking cares? I didn’t listen to Van Halen because of speed guitar and complicated Bass lines. I think people liked Van Halen because they were a good GROUP. A group works TOGETHER. As soon as you remove one person from the equation you get another formula, regardless how good they are as a musician. Don’t get me wrong- Eddie did get the spotlight with his guitar solos but that was an added bonus with the great song writing. This album was ok at the time but it wasn’t no Van Halen AND if you’re driving around in your car blasting this CD on your stereo people will look at your ass like you’re living in the fucking 80’ and haven’t moved on. But then again, if you are listening to this album in 2004 you probally have a mullet and drive a Transam.

Billy Sheehan may be a more accomplished bass player than Michael Anthony, but Anthony's background vocals separated VH from many other bands. Plus his Jack Daniel's bass earns him bonus points. Advantage: Anthony.

Eat Em’ And Smile ROCKS, period. I’m not sure that I would draw too many parallels with any of the VH records… hell, it is hard enough to draw parallels between Van Halen’s actual records… (VH I & II are the most similar, Women and Children First is a departure… hairier than the first two… Fair Warning is significantly ‘darker’ than the others… Diver Down is basically a bunch of covers with a smattering of divergent (albeit Kick Ass) originals (the solo on ‘Secrets’ is one of my faves)…. Anyhoo, I think it is easier to compare this album with VH’s offering at the time to figure out which one is superior… and in this case… ‘Eat ‘Em’ takes it…

I’m a guitarist, and am accomplished enough that the band I was in used to perform some of these tunes. Let’s just end this right here… as far as strict technical ability is concerned Vai is more accomplished than Edward, but THAT IS NOT THE POINT.

The point is that both Vai and Edward are UNIQUE. Of the slew of speed merchants out there, I have never encountered a player that really plays like either of them. People automatically associate tapping with Edward, but NOBODY taps like Edward. Vai taps, but it does not sound like EVH. It RULES, it is just different. Same with trem work, tone, everything. Both of these guys are unique, unlike any others… and that is what distinguishes them from the endless queue of Yng-wannabe’s out there.

Not that DLR doesn’t re-hash some old tricks; There is a ‘Hot For Teacher’ on every album… here it’s Elephant Gun… Skyscraper has Bottom Line… A Little Ain’t Enough gave us Showtime, Filthy has Slamdunk. He just can’t resist that ‘uptempo boogie/swing with double kick’… it is almost like he says “okay guys… you all know Hot for Teacher? Good. Play it while I write some other lyrics… Cool, one down, 9 to go.”

Also, someone said that if you are listening to this today you have a mullet and a Trans Am… well, it’s in the CD player of my BMW right now… still ROCKS! I don’t believe in turning your back on your roots. Sure, I listen to newer (and older) stuff… but albums this good don’t get stale.

Also, nothing wrong with Greg Bissonette… at least Maynard Ferguson didn’t think so. Cheers.

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Sonrisa Salvaje - Warner Bros. 1986.
Rating = 8

Album de Van Halen del mejor funkin' desde 1984. Oscila mas difícilmente, mas pegadizo, mas ruidoso, diverser, y apenas tan complexly como 5150 o cualquier cosa desde entonces. Dave ha tirado juntos de un grupo de jugadores con mas habilidad (sin embargo obviamente menos ingeniosidad) que Eddie y sus poons -- incluyendo Steve Vai, que consiguio comenzado en el negocio transcribiendo un manojo de los solos ridiculo complicados de la guitarra de Zappa franco y jugandolos detras para el hombre. El no era un wannabe de Eddie - el era justo un individuo que podria jugar cualquier manera goddamned que el deseara a.

But enough of my hilarious crazy language! Sonrisa Salvaje is David Lee Roth's Spanish-language version of Eat 'Em And Smile, an alternately hilarious and frustrating project that treats DLR fans to such joys as hearing him answer the opening guitar query with "Como?" before translating "Whoa!" into a guttural "Uuuyiiiii!," while also unfortunately rendering his classic silly couplets indecipherable and thus negating a large portion of the fun that is to be had in his work. On the other hand, if Spanish is your maiden language, it probably KICKS ASS!!!! I wouldn't know though.

Sample lyrics that I hope he translated correctly for the Spanish-speaking audience:

"Gotta keep things moving/'Til my personality starts improving!"

"I'm going coconuts, but at least I'm going my way!"

"So call it love or call it murder/This ain't the crime of the century/Don't point that thing at me!"

I do know that he changed at least some of the lyrics though, if only because English slang doesn't translate perfectly into the Spanish tongue. This is evident even in the titles: Sonrisa Salvaje translates to Wild Smile. "Noche De Ronda En La Ciudad" apparently means something like "Night Of Round In The City" (rather than "Ladies' Night In Buffalo"), "Loco De Calor" seems to mean "Heat-Crazy Person," and who doesn't love a good visit to "The Street Of The Tobacco"? "Bump And Grind" is now "How Much Frenzy"! "Elephant Gun" is now "Weapon Of Greater Hunting"! "Big Trouble" is now "In Search Of Lawsuit"! God I fucken love online translators.

God I fucken love spelling "fucking" "fucken."

As for the album, the music is the same mix used on Eat 'Em And Smile, but Dave's vocals seem a bit louder. Also, because he has to concentrate on reading and correctly pronunciating all the foreign words, his delivery sounds much less natural and comfortable. He also sounds hoarser on here for some reason, as if he's coming down with a sore throat (particularly on the tough-on-the-ears "Noche De Ronda En La Ciudad," which replaces the English-version whisperiness with a gross old-Spanish-person raspiness).

A few other things of note: (a) he replaces all the "Yankee Rose" bridge back-up vocals ('coast to coast,' 'sea to shining sea,' etc) with the easier-to-remember 'yankee rose,' 'yankee rose,' etc.; (b) even the female backing vocalists sing Spanish in "Asi Es La Vida" ("That's Life"); and (c) there is apparently no word in the Spanish language for "Zop-bop-be-zoopy-doopy-doo."

There's certainly some novelty factor here even for non-Spanish-speaking DLR fans, but not nearly as much as you might hope -- simply because you can't understand what the hell he's saying! Personally, I'd love to hear what any of you Spanish speakers out there think of this release. Does he change a lot of the lyrics? Is his pronunciation awkward and accented? And most of all, is the record as much fun in Spanish as it is in English?

Either way, the record unfortunately bombed and Rascacielos did not follow.

Nor did Un Poco No Es Bustante.

Nor Su Pequena Boca Asquerosa.

But then Venda De DLR came out and it was a HUGE HIT!!!!!!

Nor Diamante Dave.

Reader Comments

I don't know if it's more amusingly inexplicable that David Lee Roth released a Spanish version of one of his albums or that you actually bothered to review it.

I have not heard this album in English, let alone in Spanish, but I do enjoy things getting lost in translation, and thus, this review. Actually, I just went and retranslated your proposed Spanish follow-up album titles using what was probably the same online translator and got: Its Pequena Revolting Mouth, Bandage Of DLR, A Little Is Not Bustante, and the strangely poetic Shine Like Diamonds Dave. Oh, also Rascacielos just translated back to Skyscraper.

In conclusion:
Album de Van Pulls ahead of best funkin' from 1984. It oscillates hardly but, but pegadizo, but noisy, to diverser, and just so complexly as 5150 or any thing since then. Dave has thrown together of a group of players with but ability (nevertheless obvious less ingenuity) than Eddie and his poons -- including Steve Vai, that consiguio begun in the business transcribing complicated a single handful of ridiculo of the guitar of frank Zappa and jugandolos detras for the man. The right era was not wannabe of Eddie - an individual that podria to play any way goddamned that wished a

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Skyscraper - Warner Bros. 1988.
Rating = 7

Hyarko. May I say "Hyarko" inside this development of strangers? GOOD! FUCK YOU!!!!

David Lee Roth produced this album. Not Tedd Temmppllemmann, but David Lee Roth. And he did some crazyass things with it too! Listen closely to "The Bottom Line," which I'm not going to describe here because that would ruin all the surprises - THAT are production tricks at its kookiest my friend! And it's a good thing too, because otherwise the song would suck Phil Donahue's inner turmoil.

Figuratively, of course.

This album appears to be Dave's attempt to be NON-gonzo. That last album? Psycho-gonzo! Like Ted Nugent stupid wacky gonzo! But these are more like actual songs. With keyboards and backup vocals and maturity. Which is fine, I suppose, except that the corny keyboards and occasional synth drums (remember "Stand Up"? HEEEE!) plant the record firmly in the days of Glenn Frey, Miami Vice and Huey Lewis peeking over his sunglasses at a woman in a bikini with large breasts as he says the words "I'm alone with you". Also, Steve Vai is slightly more reined in than on the last album, which makes the crappy songs sound... you know, like crappy songs. J'accuse "Two Fools A Minute," "Perfect Timing" and the title track.

It's definitely not all bad though. There are still plenty of guitar and arsonist pyrotechnics in the crazier rock tunes ("Hot Dog And A Shake"? More like "Hot Dog And A GUY PLAYING A GUITAR REALLY FAST," if you ah fuck it), and the hits "Damn Good" and "Just Like Paradise" are absolutely BEYOND catchy-as-a-refrigerator-magnet, as is "Hina," which you've never heard but maybe someday if you're lucky or bold, you'll purchase this album before you've grown old!

Hey! I'm a poet and I wasn't aware of the fact that I was a poet! But my feet were aware of the fact that I'm a poet! They're lengthy!

As is my penile erection of sex!

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A Little Ain't Enough - Warner Bros. 1991.
Rating = 6

If Skyscraper wasn't an attempt to distance himself from Van Halen (some at the time argued that he added the keyboards to compete with VH's recent spat of pop hits - "Dreams," "Love Walks In," etc.), this one certainly was. Aside from one or two speedy metal tunes like "It's Showtime," this stuff is all split between sincere-sounding Black Crowesy swagger rock and semi-grotesque Bullet Boys-type mid-80s hair metal.

Unfortunately for Dave, it came out in 1991. The year of Nirvana. The year that hair metal died. And this album, as loud, raucous and enjoyable as it could be at times, wasn't going to save it. Not even with Vegasy schlock like "Sensible Shoes" or Foreigner-esque hard rock like the title track. Can you imagine? The main problems were that (A) he'd lost Steve Vai and Billy Sheehan so the riffs and playing aren't anywhere near as interesting as they were before and.

Oh. Sorry about that. I was unable to come up with a second problem. Everything else about the record is fine. It's a perfectly adequate hard rock album with a still-tremendously-entert-ainin-gsinge-r. Just less hooky than his others, and for that crime I've punished it with a 6.

Reader Comments

This album as well as most of Dave's recent work cannot be defended. This man obviously has ego issues and when you can't work with such talent as Steve Vai, Billy Sheenan, and a little guy named Eddie Van Halen, then something is wrong. This album quite frankly SUCKS!

I've got to say the previous comments astound me. These people clearly don't know the amazing story behind the album. The guitarist was a 20 year old kid named Jason Becker, regarded among guitarists as one of the best players. Ever. Jason had been diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gherig's Disease) shortly before he signed up with Dave. By the time they got around to recording the album, Jason's hands were so weak he could barely get through the songs. He couldn't stand up shortly after that and could play no more so was unable to tour for the album. He is still alive today but can't move at all and a machine feeds him and breaths for him. He still writes music but can only move his eyes so he has special software for it.

Back to the album, though. Pay really close attention to all the guitar work, because that shines through and is far far more complex and difficult to pull off than Vai's work with Roth. Dave's singing is alright on a few tracks, but is a bit below average. It could have been big if it wasn't for the grunge revolution.

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Your Filthy Little Mouth - Reprise 1994.
Rating = 7

Okay HERE's the one you should laugh me out of town for enjoying. Stylistically, this is essentially Crazy From The Heat expanded into a full album - VEGAS CITY. Which I guess is actually called LAS VEGAS, but oh leave just come on jesus. The album is stylistically all over the place, with a little bit country, a little bit smoke some pole, some R'n'B, some awesome guitar-led ballads, some horrid shitpop a la Phil Collins and NOTHING that sounds at all like Van Halen.

This album got reamed when it came out (as did the previous record, come to think of it). It was Dave with a makeover - a short Eddie Money-like haircut singing nice big band style songs for yuppies. Wright? RONG!

Oh okay, right. But I'll be fig newtoned if I don't just enjoy the Governor Pete Wilson (the baddest politician to ever grab a mic and go BOOM!) out of most of these stupidass songs. The two or three rockers are catchy sure, but mostly it's the other ones. They're just *FUN*! Just don't expect art or even rock and roll. This is Vegasy Dave doing ridiculous UNDERpomped Vegasy things. No danger here aside from a few blue words. Lots of funny lyrics though, and his voice is in top form as always. Don't dump on the guy for trying to add a little Variety to his act! Just love it or hate it.

Which of course I do neither of, I suppose, since I can't stand some of this nonsense ("She's My Machine," "Cheatin' Heart Cafe" and "Night Life" make my eyelid twitch in a most unattractive mannerism), but I do, I assure you, enjoy the majority of the songs, most of which are just supercatchy in a sing-songy Sammy Davis Jr. way. If you're as dumb as me, anyway. I don't even think DAVE likes this record!!!!

Reader Comments

man i did see a commercial of it but it did not sell! god! what fickle cocksuckers! anyhow i did understand that dave is not cool anymore! i did get bummed! we dumped the comadore 64 '94 was not my year! kurt's dead oj busted! god i never felt this bad since!

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DLR Band - Wawazat!! 1998.
Rating = 8

Right before he recorded this, David was asked to join Van Halen for two new songs and an appearance at the MTV Music Awards. He was on Cloud Nine, believing that he had been invited back to one of the greatest hard rock bands of all time. Then the self-righteous morons canned him and hired a guy with even less charisma and talent than Sammy Hagar. So he responded by doing Eat 'Em And Smile II!!!!

Okar, nort exactly, but he DID hire a new band and tell them to sound like vintage Van Halen. And, although there's no Steve Vai or Eddie in this band, they pull it off pretty darned well! The rock is loud, brash, stupid, fun and just catchy as all heck! Really great stuff from beginning to end. All rock - not as gonzo wild as Eat My Fuc And Smile, but the songs are really well written and arranged. They're in the vein of like Van Halen II-type songs. Not all of them are melodic from here to the beach, but the ones that aren't have awesome grooves and cool, simple guitar riffs. Really, anybody who likes early Van Halen should pick it up if only to hear what a good copy band can do. It doesn't just remind you how great VH were - it reminds you how great their brand of rock can be in anybody's hands, if those musicians are capable of writing original catchy riffs. This batch can. There's some cool acoustic stuff, heavy bluesish throbbing, "Hot For Teacher"-like manic bashing (which reminds me - am I crazy or is that the fastest fucking song that has ever been a hit single on FM radio?) and lots of singalongable midtempo hard rock with the guitars cranked up REALLY FUCKING LOUD!!!!

Hey, I used the word "fucking" twice in that sentence! You've been double-fucked! Did you enjoy the fun for you?

One negative word though - Dave can't hit those high notes anymore and he sounds really amateurish when he tries and fails. But low and mid range? Excellent!

Reader Comments

dlru2@netnitco.net (Motorboat Jones)
This IS David Lee Roth's finest solo work to date. Some of you may say that Eat 'Em And Smile would rival this disc. not true. DLR Band is over fifty solid minutes of rock. EEAS was around 30. 'nuff said. Now to the song by song analysis. btw, if you don't like song by song analysis, go fuck yourself. ranked in order of preference.

#1 "Weekend With The Babysitter" This is the most original track on the entire album, and well produced as well (way to go Dave). And the line "I'm also hot for teacher", has to make it an instant classic!
#2 "Wa wa zat!!" Extremely radio friendly, with a great sound out of guitarist John Lowery (now John 5 in marilyn manson). Dave hasn't sounded this good on vocals in 10 years!!
#3 "King Of The Hill" Guitarist Michael Hartman smokes on this offering! His playing alone makes the song. The version on his solo album kix!
#4 "Little Texas" This is a great rocker, Luzier's drumming is at another level, and this song seems to have video written all over it. Ed, Alex, Mike. don't you wish you could write something like this again?!?!?!
#5 "Relentless" Vocally, this is a masterpiece. Dave whoops and wows throughout. what more could you ask for?!
#6 "Black Sand" VH said dave couldn't sing seriously. here's your answer. beautiful work on guitar by Terry Kilgore.
#7 "Indeedido" Michael Hartman goes crazy tearing riffs out of nowhere!
#8 "Slam Dunk" 'Legends. they're forever.'
#9 "Counterblast" Hey! Dave's talking about the internet!!!
#10 "Going Places" Great production and once again Terry Kilgore proves himself.
#11 "Blacklight" Very Zeppelinesque, with some great screams!
#12 "Lose The Dress (Keep The Shoes)" Can you say tongue-in-cheek?!
#13 "Tight" reworking of the song "Private Parts". which was supposed to be in Howard Stern's movie...
#14 "Right Tool For The Job" This song would've fit perfectly on YFLM.

Remember, the distance between #1 and #14 can't be seen by the naked eye. or naked anything else for that matter!!! Another cool thing, the bassist named on the album "B'urbon Bob" is a fictional character, lead guitarists Lowery and Hartman switched places at the bass for each others prospective songs. Michael Hartman, 1 of 3 guitarists on this album, passed away last July... another great talent lost in the world of rock. 10 outta' 10.

Marsha Lynn Hartman { Michael C. Hartman's Mother }
Michael Hartman may have passed on July 6 of 2000 , BUT he did leave his gift of guitar playing in his C/D black Glue and his guitar playing on the DLR Band C/D . Michael also did some studio work with a few other musicians in LA and we were notified his guitar playing is now on the radio in Germany * I am Michael's Mother and very proud of his dedication and desire to not let his health condition keep him from doing what he loved, and that was to play the Guitar ! I have his music and 24 years of memories that keep him very much alive in my heart as well as his two brothers who both play the guitar , and they let everyone know Michael Hartman is their brother and they are proud * Thank you for continuing his memory .

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Diamond Dave - Magna Carta 2003.
Rating = 3

There are two fields of intellectual thought regarding the work and persona of Jewish entertainer David Lee Roth. There are the nay-sayers who have always found him to be a boorish, scenery-chewing buffoon, and the pro-Dave camp, who followed with glee his every yelp, leap and hilarious rock video up through Skyscraper, before having to sit back and watch their one-time idol grow wrinklier, more grotesque and apparently completely unaware of the public's perception of him. Why does he still bleach the little that's left of his hair? Why does he still make rubbery Don Knotts-style faces while surrounding himself with buxom, half-dressed models who probably find him sickening? Does he still think he's young, wild and sexy? Or is it all an act - an aging Vegas showman's parody of the larger-than-life rock star he once was? If it's the latter, I'm all for it as a hilarious and un-self-conscious "Frig you!" to our age- and beauty-centric popular culture. Unfortunately, I'm more inclined to think it's the former, which means Dave is well on his way to being the most highly visible "outsider artist" of our time -- bathing in the warmth of his audience's applause, blissfully unaware that they stopped laughing WITH him a long time ago.

I know I may sound patronizing, but I don't mean to. Dave still has millions more fans than I'll ever have, even if they're only fans of a younger version of the man. And I myself am a David Lee Roth fan. I read - and loved - his Crazy From The Heat book and was excited when I heard that he was releasing an album of cover tunes. So it's not with a light, "told you so" heart that I declare Diamond Dave the worst collection of music he has ever released. Whether desecrating classics or defecating obscurities (THREE SONGS IN A ROW by Savoy Brown!? The PRE-FOGHAT Savoy Brown?), Dave lets his overblown and/or boring personas ruin the intrinsic value of nearly every song on here. How do you ruin a song as great as "Tomorrow Never Knows"? Simple - you have your band learn it wrong and then sing it like a rich jock making fun of hippies. How do you suck the fun out of The Hombres' hilarious nugget "Let It All Hang Out"? Dave knows! You shove the killer guitar riff way in the background to make room for a lifeless, pointlessly "serious" intonation of the lyrics. But surely it's not possible to ruin Hendrix's "If 6 Was 9"?! Well no, it's plenty possible if you convert it into a trance/eastern electronic thing with the lyrics AGAIN intonated in an inscrutably unmusical (and unemotional) tone. I know he's just trying to give that Dave flave to pre-existing songs, but to what end? What is his goal with this release? To prove to the world that he's no longer capable of adequately interpreting other songwriters' material? Surely he didn't think that Diamond Dave would have the career-defining impact of his LAST covers project, from whence sprang his eternal hits "California Girls" and "Just A Gigolo." Those songs sprung forth from the well of a young, arrogant man with tons of self-confidence and charisma. The David Lee Roth of 2003 is not that man. Far from aging gracefully, he has clung pathetically to an image he out-aged 15 years ago. He's incapable of (or uninterested in?) finding a new voice as an all-grown-up entertainer, so we find him year after year going through the same clownish motions but with a fiendish skeletal face where his (ironically) Nordic beauty used to be.

Truth be told, I could give a crap if he bounces around with models or hires a bunch of midgets to escort him everywhere, just as long as he's putting out decent material. This year, he isn't.

Reader Comments

This girl I know fucked him last month and said his balls are all fucked-up looking. Seriously, she said they were "all weird looking."

novelty records. how did you buy them well first i do know that bill shatner has the transformed man! ho boy! if you wanna hear bill shriek to mr.tamborine man! then HEY!!!!!!!!!!!!! MR. TAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAMBOOORINEEEEEEEENMAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!

Think that dave was one of the best all time front men for a band. This being said, I wonder after running off Eddie and Steve Vai, how many great guitarists are out there that Dave can sing in front of....just like marriage...if it breaks up....Dave is at least 50% of the problem.

I so him in the UK and he was fantastic so fuck all you assholes who are talentless cocksuckers and don't have the charisma of Dave "Diamond Dave rules Eddie fuckin Drools"

Oh you are so right. He hasn't had a decent voice since his DLR Band in 1998..and even THAT was kinda sketchy.

i'd say his last of the "old dave" was ALAE in 1991. 1994 was a disasterous year. 1996 made him look like a fool.

I saw him 1 year ago at the house of blues...his voice is horrible. He looks like the doc from back to the future. I did, however, see recent pics of him with short brown hair and that finally looks a little credible. I think he looked fine in the mid 90's with that short brown hair from the jay leno video.

What dave is and used to be are 2 different people. If he found a new, mature voice and started singing music more fit for his age, maybe he can re-emerge as a new man and great singer. But for Everything before 1991, forget it.

One thing i did like was the Song, 'Thug Pop' from his new cover album...now THAT was a good one... Who knows though..he might have done 500 takes to hit those high notes just right..cause i know he cant do it live.

haven't heard Diamond Dave (except snippets which were streamed thru laptop speakers).

He's a hero what ever. Nothing lasts for ever - Check out Robert 'wobbly' Plants voice these days. but that's the real Rock n' Rollers for you. You can't spend your career screaming, snorting and smoking and expect yer chords to stay intact.

Apparently D. L. R. never could sing - according to V.H. members. Utter bollocks. What makes a great voice? Charisma. And D. L. R. has allways had it in droves. I mean - was there any good songs on Diver Down? He pulled em' thru to my mind (or maybe that's cos I've just listened to it).

And that bit in A Simple Rhyme where it goes quiet - that's class. As is all the fuel for the Roth debate. (He could allways sing better than ed and Michael Anthony and I'd prefer to hear him than Sammy H. ccheck live at the Pasadena civic from 77 - if you want shitty backing vocals that sound like that Beach boys album track where they take the piss out of each others voices - Cassius Love vs Sonny Wilson or what ever).

Anyways. Roth rules regardless!!! (allthough 'Summer nights' was an ok trak!!!!!!!!)

pbk73@comcast.net (Peter Kaufmann)
I dunno. I really loved early Van Halen with Dave. When Dave left or was fired it wasn’t the same. It’s kind of sad that people are dissin’ the shit out of Dave now because of his albums, thinking that they’re going to be like early David Lee Roth albums or something close to early Van Halen. Personally, I haven’t bought any Van Halen albums after “1984”. At the time I thought “Eat em’ and Smile”, and “Skyscraper” were alright, but still nothing compared to the early Van Halen. I do occasionally listen to early Van Halen these days but I don’t even own those DLR albums anymore. Dave was fucking great with Van Halen and they were great with him- but that was then, and this is now. Even if they got back together it wouldn’t be the same. That’s like Sting getting back with The Police- his corny, smooth Jazz ass wouldn’t even fit in anymore! I think people should move on with Van Halen and Dave and keep the good memory of it all. Not the shit that ain’t really happening. There is new music to be heard instead of the DLR Band and Van Halen with Sammy Hagar AGAIN! Keep the memory alive and move on! Leave Diamond Dave alone. If you don’t like him- don’t listen to him. I don’t! But that review that said he looked like “The Doc” from “Back To The Future” was pretty fucking funny!!!!! Leave poor Dave alone. Pick on “1,2,3 Lock Box” Sammy.

hscott6@ntlworld.com (Heather Scott)
I agree!!People should not diss dave...here is a guy who does what he wants all the time..musically and socially. When he releases covers its because he wants to. To those questioning his image....well if he wasn't 'diamond' dave then who would care!? He'd just be another boring older artist, i really admire the guy for doing and dressing how he wants...growing old discracefully inspires me!!!

megumigorman@hotmail.com (Shane)
I cant believe I'm commenting on DLR as the only other band I've commented on is Killing Joke,other end of the scale as far as legitimate/serious goes-or so most think.Early Van Halen was ferocious awe inspiring rock and roll.DLR was mostly fantastic, highly technical party music leading up to the soaring,mature make you want to go hangliding album skyscraper.After that,pure garbage.I grew up thinking Dave was a Viking rock god that any of us would love to be.And street cred too with a macho voice and meen street lyrics,was suprised to learn he was half Jewish but with all the later Vegas glitzy cheese Im more inclined to believe it.(Im picturing an old New York transplant Jewish lady standing in an expensive jewlery store in Florida with a diamond braclet,too much makeup cradeling an overgroomed poodle)As far as aging gracefully,he has no where to go with his music or image that I can think of so...unlike Lemmy of Motorhead who gained fans with the grunge and post grunge crowd,Daves music had an expiration date.Much respect for the utterly fantastic stuff that was to be had though,and the memories of that period of time that sound exemplifies.

jkonrath@rumored.com (Jon)
Have you seen the No Holds Bar-Be-Que tape? It's, um, interesting.

Just one word, young man. CHICKENFOOT. No, that wasn't two words.

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