Alive and Screamin' (Live)
Recorded during stops in Cincinnati, Baltimore, Toronto, and Amarillo, Texas, over the course of a 1986 tour, Alive and Screaming catches Krokus at the peak of its powers. Unlike most live albums, this features performances taken directly from the soundboard. Thus, the often-distracting crowd sounds and atmospheric quirks of the venues are omitted, putting the focus on the band’s playing. Krokus sounds looser and more alive onstage than it does in the studio. There are no dull moments, as the tracklist is only nine songs long and every Krokus song was designed with an arena audience in mind. “Long Stick Goes Down” and “Eat the Rich” form a gloriously filthy opening salvo, but “Midnite Maniac” also vies for the album’s peak performance. “Bedside Radio” and “Lay Me Down” show the band in a more relaxed hair metal style, but Krokus was never going to be mistaken for Bon Jovi. The program closes with a downright malicious rendition of “Headhunter,” a speed metal onslaught that ranks with the best in its class.