10 Songs, 32 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Alice Cooper’s 14th studio album might be a minor effort (Cooper says he can’t even remember making it) in the context of the rock star’s 40-plus year career. By this time, he'd already mixed Broadway and horror with weepy confessionals and international chart-topping hard rock anthems. But minor or no, the album’s still long on Cooper’s heady commitment to hard rock hooks, dead-on vocals, and killer songwriting thick with cockeyed characters and preeny sarcasm. There’s the self-skewering homage (“Zorro’s Ascent”), heavy postpunk pop (“I Like Girls”—a duet with Patty Donahue from The Waitresses), a wonderfully sung cinematic ballad cowritten by film-score king Lalo Schifrin (“I Am the Future”), and a five-minute musical suite worthy of Bob Ezrin (“No Baloney Homosapiens”), which connects dots between theater, hard rock, classical music, and punk. And what’s not to love about a guy who “pedestalizes” his pets after they rise from the dead to save his life on “I’m Alive (That Was the Day My Dead Pet Returned to Save My Life)”? On-again off-again Cooper guitarist Dick Wagner is everywhere here too, which is a good thing.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Alice Cooper’s 14th studio album might be a minor effort (Cooper says he can’t even remember making it) in the context of the rock star’s 40-plus year career. By this time, he'd already mixed Broadway and horror with weepy confessionals and international chart-topping hard rock anthems. But minor or no, the album’s still long on Cooper’s heady commitment to hard rock hooks, dead-on vocals, and killer songwriting thick with cockeyed characters and preeny sarcasm. There’s the self-skewering homage (“Zorro’s Ascent”), heavy postpunk pop (“I Like Girls”—a duet with Patty Donahue from The Waitresses), a wonderfully sung cinematic ballad cowritten by film-score king Lalo Schifrin (“I Am the Future”), and a five-minute musical suite worthy of Bob Ezrin (“No Baloney Homosapiens”), which connects dots between theater, hard rock, classical music, and punk. And what’s not to love about a guy who “pedestalizes” his pets after they rise from the dead to save his life on “I’m Alive (That Was the Day My Dead Pet Returned to Save My Life)”? On-again off-again Cooper guitarist Dick Wagner is everywhere here too, which is a good thing.

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