[Finally, an excuse to post a clip from Boogie Nights...]
Earlier this summer we had Boston/Styx. The Journey/Cheap Trick/Heart trio is coming in a few weeks. And squeezed in between is Night Ranger, a band that tortured me so much in the early '80s that I think the song “Sister Christian” was enough to dissuade me from any religious affiliation. Unbelievably, Night Ranger has not only survived for 25 years, they are out on tour in support of a new record, Hole in the Sun. And unlike Journey, who have simply recut the old songs with the new Filipino, Steve Perry soundalike, vocalist Jack Blades and Night Ranger are offering up (for better and worse) all new material.
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To these ears, new songs such as “Tell Your Vision” and “You’re Gonna Hear From Me” sound as bloated and suspect as '80s hits such as “Don’t Tell Me You Love Me” and the aforementioned “Sister Christian.”
“People will hear this record and recognize our dual blazing guitars and vocals and big choruses and melodic verses,” says Blades oh-so-modestly (via a press release).
Recently, Night Ranger played, of all places, Guantanamo Bay. I wonder if the inmates were allowed to listen...if so, would the Supreme Court rule that excessive punishment?
Night Ranger plays at Glass Cactus in Grapevine this Saturday. Big hair is not optional. --Darryl Smyers