Friday, March 14, 2008
Have You Got the Time to Find Out Who Alice Cooper Really Is?
A friend of mine's mother caught the dinosaur rock event of Alice Cooper opening for the Rolling Stones in Louisville, KY last summer. Her mom reportedly reported on the subject of Alice, "The only people I could see enjoying his show are a few old men and some teenage boys." Alas, Alice Cooper...let yer old pal Doc/Fries talk some turkey up in this thing...
The greatness of Alice Cooper resides primarily in the classic Alice Cooper Band line up that produced a string of what this reporter gazes upon as four of the greatest rock records of the 20th century. Love It To Death, Killers, School's Out & Billion Dollar Babies. If you base any bias against Cooper for latter day recordings, visit or revisit these records, and ye shall step into the light of gnosis, ye shall behold the pervasive influence on music in its wake, ye shall understand the power and glory of the classic band and know that it is good.
My partner in slime, Brian Manley (aka Eggroll), in the Smacks! and myself have recently been studying a video of Alice Cooper performing live on television the song "Is It My Body" from the LP Love It To Death. One viewing of this will shorten the process of having to revisit the albums to learn yerself some Cooper 101. Unfortunately, it seems Cooper has been revisionised into something of a "hair metal" godfather (not to mention his current persona as a golf playing conservative which besmirches things), which is true, but not entirely accurate.
One needs to consider the fact that the Alice Cooper Band went from a psychedelic act with support from Frank Zappa to a band that sharpened their theatrical rock blade with producer Bob Ezrin into a dark glitter act that performed in the early seventies with bands such as the New York Dolls and the Stooges as opening acts and fellow comrades fighting the good fight. See the matching silver jumpsuits, see and hear Alice's freaky/drunk/childlike sing-song voice/persona, dig the striptease and psyche breakdown that's not part of the LP version of the tune.
Alice knew how to put his shoe on a mic stand and put on a show. Now, THIS is a BAND. And if you dispute my findings, I know ye not.