Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Van Halen, A Different Kind Of Truth - and the Salvation Army?

The debates about a rock band's best singer are unending. We can think of Ozzy vs Dio, Gillan vs Coverdale, Gabriel vs Collins - and let's not forget David Lee Roth vs Sammy Hagar, as Van Halen produce their first studio release for 14 years. For my own part, given that I would just as readily listen to 5150 and OU812 (Hagar) as VH1 and 1984 (Roth), I'm content to sidestep the comparisons. Here and now, any hesitancy as to whether this reunion was just a ploy from another set of past their best 70s/80s rockers was soon dispelled. A Different Kind Of Truth is a really good album.

So why the title? Well, it triggered a long forgotten memory from ancient RE lessons. "Blood and Fire", the fifth song on the album, is the motto of the Salvation Army. Well, fancy that. What scope might this provide for EVH to play Onward Christian Soldiers as an introduction to the song in similar fashion to Eruption, by fingertapping eight notes to each single note of the hymn?

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