Forgotten Treasures – Ignored Albums of the 1990s – LeBrain’s List Part 5

Whoops!  I forgot these.  Thanks to the Heavy Metal OverloRd for pointing at least one of these out.

I really should have included these in my list of 88 albums that went under-appreciated in the 1990’s.  I loved these, still do, and my life wouldn’t be the same without them.

In alphabetical order:

BLUE RODEO – Just Like A Vacation (up there with Sloan as one of my fave live albums of all time)
FISH – Kettle of Fish 88-98 (my introduction to his solo music, a great set!)
HELIX – B-Sides (a misnomer: no B-sides included, but all great tracks that didn’t make albums)
GEORGE LYNCH – Sacred Groove (pure smoke!)
SANDBOX – Bionic (I guess Mike Smith makes significantly more money playing Bubbles on Trailer Park Boys)
SANDBOX – A Murder In The Glee Club (brilliant, brilliant concept album on insanity. Genius!)
REEF – Glow (I think these guys were pretty big in the UK but unknown here)
ROCKHEAD – Rockhead (see my review for all the details)
SLOAN – Between The Bridges (can’t believe I forgot my fave Sloan studio record!)

THIN LIZZY – Dedication: The Very Best Of (the song “Dedication” was my intro to Lizzy!)
BILL WARD – Ward One: Along The Way (I have a review forthcoming, one of the best solo Sabs ever)
THE WHITLAMS – Eternal Nightcap (Aussie band, saw them open for Blue Rodeo, blew me away)
ZAKK WYLDE – Book of Shadows (thanks HMO! Liked it so much I bought it twice)

I really hope I didn’t forget any more.  Embarrassing.  Check these out…all great albums front to back!

66 comments

  1. Totally off the top of my head these are ones I would suggest! I love doing things like this!

    Blue Murder – Nothin’ But Trouble
    Cheap Trick – S/T (the 1997 one)
    Raging Slab – Dynamite Monster Boogie Concert
    Lynyrd Skynyrd – The Last Rebel
    Pretty much anything by Skyclad
    Def Leppard – Retroactive
    Steve Perry – For the Love of Strange Medicine
    Carcass – Swansong
    Glenn Hughes – Addiction

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    1. All albums I do not own. But have heard of. Funny, my customers used to complain so hard about that Cheap Trick album. “It sucks!” I never heard it so I can’t comment. And Raging Slab, I remember their videos. They had a good slide player too.

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      1. The Cheap Trick album is great. It was a style change at the time though and the folk complaining about it were probably those that just liked the 80s outside-writer albums. The ’97 Trick was more of a return to their 70s style with a bit of 90s alternative thrown in. Actually I think the label they were on stiffed so it didn’t get distributed very well. It was an expensive import over in the UK.

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        1. When I worked in Borders it was really cheap (think it might have been mispriced actually but I wasn’t going to tell anyone!) and I got a discount too. I was fairly confident I was going to like them.

          I can think of a few bands I started of listening to via box sets but not many… Cheap Trick, ZZ Top, Pentangle, Genesis and The Misfits spring to mind but that’s probably about it!

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        2. All I had was the ZZ Top 2 CD hits set…Rancho Texicano, I think it’s called. I liked it so much I went for the box! I bought the one that looks like a shed. WHen I bought it, the girl said, “Oh thank God, one less box set that doesn’t fit on our shelves!”

          I do like that box though, I haven’t felt the need to buy any more ZZ Top actually.

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        3. And now that I think about it. Although I had heard plenty of their stuff and liked it I didn’t get REALLY into Aerosmith until I bought the Box of Fire. That was a bit of a gamble buying that! It wasn’t cheap… although not bad considering the amount of albums on it.

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        4. I’m surprised Aerosmith hasn’t issued all those albums with bonus tracks, making the Box of Fire redundant. Seems to happen with most other bands I buy.

          (Black Sabbath, I’m looking directly at YOU.)

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    2. Oops I do own Lep. And you’re right…that one is a gooder.

      The reason I did not include is that for me, I had all the singles anyway, so the album was a bit redundant. That’s the only reason though. It easily could have made the list otherwise.

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      1. I was going to say about that but I reckoned it was probably just an… OVERSIGHT! haha that’ll never grow old.

        I rarely bought singles back then so it was all new to me. I wish I had paid more attention to singles… hopefully I’ll make up for it with my “Single of the Week” project. Plug.

        And speaking of plugs… thanks for the link and mention!

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        1. Yeah, I’m going to try and keep it going for a while. I can easily buy a single every week here at little expense. There are many shops with racks and racks of them. And they’re all cheap and cheerful. It won’t necessarily be things that are especially rare or unusual though. Just songs I like! It might get ugly cause there are lots of 80s pop songs I’d love to get on single but wouldn’t buy albums to get.

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        2. I look forward to the future of this then. Here, singles can be very hard to come by. I’d paid as much for the single as the album in many cases. But I do have plenty in the collection to plunder for future reviews…

          If you post something cool that I desire don’t be surprised if I make an offer on it!

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        3. I think if there is anything particularly unusual or rare on them then they are probably still expensive but it’ll be easy to get something every week I think. But I’ve seen plenty of cool, unusual things here that are still enticingly cheap!

          Feel free to email me a wish list! I don’t mind keeping an eye out for you.

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        4. Oooo can I get in on that offer of watching for singles??? If you see any Guided By Voices or Robert Pollard singles (or any of the many side projects he has), let me know! And Rollins, of course. Always Rollins. I can see if I can make a list. Cool?

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    1. Then I’m sure you will enjoy a certain video that I have coming up man…no more spoilers though.

      Just keep your eyes peeled. I’ll talk about his second album at a later date but Ward One is very unique.

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  2. Actually HMO the 97 Cheap Trick is fantastic except for the ballad..that album is right up there with the classics….I agree with u there….
    But ….
    Where is VH 3???
    Hahahaha….now lets get the debate going!
    I don’t mind it but it should have been a Eddie solo record not a VH record…I think he played all the bass ,had a helping hand in the butchering production but if u cut through that the songs are good/a lot different than the Halen sound…so I think that it’s a great solo record by Eddie but man do not sing lead..How Many Say I …uggggggh!
    Cherone got dealt a shitty hand by everyone …but for that record his vocals were good…should have never called it Halen…..I think that was part of the reason why the Mötley Corabi album dived..if they would have called it sumthin else people would have accepted it better(I think)

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    1. Hi Deke! It’s a great album. Agree with you about the ballad though. It’s easily the weakest part of the album. They should have just left that off. I quite liked “Woke Up With a Monster” too… but it had some weak tracks on it as well.

      I’ve actually never heard VH3. I never like Cherone’s voice much so I didn’t really see the point (and I wasn’t a big VH fan anyway when it came out). I remember hearing everyone slating it and wondering what was so bad about it. I listened to some of it in a shop’s listening booth and thought it was ok; I didn’t understand why everyone hated it so much.

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    2. Deke Once again you have anticipated a future list! Keep everything you said in mind…we’re getting there. Very very soon.

      He played all the bass except three songs. The funny thing is, when it came out, I thought something sounded weird with the bass, couldn’t put my finger on it. Then I found out it was because it wasn’t Michael!

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  3. Yeah for sure I mean the bass in Without You u knew it was not Anthony….it’s a shame how he got treated by that guy,yet he stuck around ,took the abuse…..Anthony is a stand up guy…

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    1. Also the vocal harmonies. I think there was a lack of Anthony on the harmonies too.

      This is what I like best about Chickenfoot, the return of the classic VH vocal harmonies. To me that was Mike’s larger contribution to the overall VH sound. Listen to how much he sang on the old records!

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  4. Dan Bairds Love Songs For The Hearing Impaired is a great rock n roll album as well.
    He was very crafty with his lyrics and for awhile,along with his previous band Georgia Satallites were the opposite of what was current at the time and made a go of it.
    If u get a chance fellas check,it out .

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  5. Yep that was the follow up to Love Songs….had a great track on it called Younger Face and few others but not as good as Love Songs!.
    Baird had a good knack almost a hillybish Bon Scott in his lyric writing…..check out Knocked UP….lyrics go ‘u got knocked up,I got locked up,I guess u could say we both got screwed”.
    Hahahahaha..simple stuff but man it still in noggin 20 yrs later!

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    1. I”m a big fan of simple, rootsy authentic rock. Dan Baird is fine by me! The thing is Deke, and I’m sure you can relate…I’m 40 years old and I feel like I haven’t even BEGUN to scratch the surface of what’s out there.

      Thankfully this blog works two ways! I can tell you guys about some of my treasures, and you can tell me what I’m missing. That way neither of us get screwed!

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  6. Hahahaha…yeah for sure,I’m 45 but man it’s great flashbacking to this stuff…some of the stuff u pull out its like oh yeah where the hell is that disc ,gotta slap it on my iPod!

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    1. You said it man! I don’t know if you saw the comment in the other entries, but we’re going to be moving in the new year. The challenge is to rip as much as my damn music as possible before then!

      But my weakness is, when I pull it out to rip, I wanna hear it too! So it takes me forever :)

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  7. Pandoras Box as well I bought that I think for about 150 bucks….great set and yeah u and HMO are right where’s the remastered remaster version from those guys..I’m sure it’s coming since Music From Another Dimension has basically tanked on the charts!
    Good luck with the move dude!

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  8. I had that Reef record, it was really good.

    You keep listing Sloan. Man, I don’t think they were underrated. Maybe they didn’t ship crates of albums like the mega-bands did, but the fans knew, the fans bought it and told their friends, radio played them, and they kept us coming back for more. I’d say that’s a win.

    Funny, I love those guys but I haven’t heard that Blue Rodeo live album. Don’t ask me why, ‘cos I couldn’t tell you.

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  9. Here in the US, Sloan is sorely underrated. They’re the Canadian equivalent to Teenage Fanclub (from Scotland), who have consistently released albums full of melodic gems, but they never repeat themselves. Nice to see Fish and Thin Lizzy gets some love here.

    My two favorite bands of the last 30 years are both from Scotland, and they’re both considered one-hit wonders here: Big Country and Del Amitri. In the ’90s, Big Country released 4 excellent albums, and one of them (“The Buffalo Skinners”) would appeal to fans of hugely produced ’90s sounding drums and loud crunchy guitars. You’d never know it was the same band who did “In A Big Country” ten years earlier. As for Del Amitri, everything they released in the ’90s is a masterpiece in my opinion. You have to like melodic, rootsy, singer-songwriter music to really appreciate them. If you do, they had no equals as far as I’m concerned.

    Another mostly unknown artist/band from the ’90s is Mike Viola & The Candy Butchers. He’s probably best unknown for being the singer of “That Thing You Do” from the movie of the same name. He’s been writing amazing songs in the vein of early Elvis Costello & Squeeze for years.

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      1. Nice to find another Del Amitri fan here, or at least someone who loves “Waking Hours” which was my first exposure to their music (although it was released in ’89 so probably shouldn’t apply to this conversation). Their follow-ups in the ’90s, “Change Everything,” “Twisted” and “Some Other Sucker’s Parade” are all lost classic waiting to be discovered.

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        1. I was thinking the same thing as I typed up my reply: nice to know someone else remembers them! I figure 1989 is close enough to count. ;) That’s the record that imprinted on me, too. I can’t even think of a mediocre song on there. Anyway, I did own their others, at various times. All good ones. Another one I throw in for consideration: Hot House Flowers.

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        2. I liked Home best, but People was also great. And of course, 1990 and 1988, respectively, so right on that line again. Also can’t go wrong with Songs From The Rain. And there’s a pretty sweet hit collection, if you just want an overview.

          Also better watch ourselves. HHF were Irish. Better not lump ’em in with the Scottish Del Amitri or we’ll have HMO on our cases! ;)

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        3. I would probably start with a best-of, unless I find the individual albums at a reasonable price (which might actually be the case). Getting back to Scotland, there was the band Texas (whose first three..and best…albums were between ’89 & ’93) and The Proclaimers (best albums in ’87 & ’88, but a lost classic also from ’94). Also, Runrig were excellent. Their best work was in the ’80s but they had some good ’90s albums as well.

          Apologies to Mike for taking this conversation on such a tangent.

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        4. Yep, best-of is cool. I know of Texas, have not heard (I think… I could be wrong on that). Proclaimers… I got burnt on 500 Miles. Maybe they need reconsideration now. Runrig! I was gonna mention them! Awesome stuff. And a personal fave… Wolfstone. Now THAT is some brilliant songwriting. I was recommending to HMO to look them up (if he hadn’t already) a while back, on his page.

          Tangent? I know no tangent. No need to apologize – this is EDUCATION for Lebrain! ;)

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        5. I’m glad you mentioned Wolfstone. They are a great band, or at least the albums I own from the ’90s and early ’00s are. I may actually enjoy them more than Runrig.

          It’s a shame that The Proclaimers are known for that song. It was a good one when it was just an album track, but the single became so ubiquitous that it overshadowed the rest of their work. The album it came from (“Sunshine On Leith”) is a great one from start to finish.

          I’m a huge prog-rock fan, and the ’90s were a great time for prog if you were willing to do your research in the early days of the internet. Only Dream Theater had any kind of exposure at that time, and deservedly so, but bands like Enchant, Spock’s Beard, Flower Kings, Anglagard, Porcupine Tree (who are now probably the best known “new” prog band), and many others were taking the music of the ’60s & ’70s and giving it their own unique twists. As all of us here know, the ’90s were far more than grunge, hip-hop and rap-rock that the media now make it out to be. I guess all decades get summarized like that, but music fans who do their homework (like all of us commenting here) are rewarded with so much more.

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  10. I had Wolfstone in my head as I stood at the top of Ben Lomond, an indelible memory I’ll have forever. I have never heard of any of those bands of prog! Damn, a whole education right there. Thanks for the tips! Around then, too, I went another way, into the swing revival. ;) But that’s my love of jazz, big band and swing in high school, which I graduated in 1993. Good stuff there, too. Royal Crown Revue, Amazing (Royal) Crowns, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Colin James and the Little Big Band. Yeah baby! Still love all that stuff (and the originals from the 40s) to this day.

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