As soon as the 80s started to happen, rock and roll had finally had its fangs. After flirting with the idea of going heavier in the 70s with Zeppelin and Sabbath, that’s when the whole genre took off and started to ruin itself with any heavy riff on which they could get their hands on. Between the more numerous gangs, however, there were a few who stepped through the cracks to show the way forward.
Besides having big hits, these were the bands that set more than one standard for what could be done in the world of hard rock, from inventing new genres to transforming old ones to create something very different from what had been heard before. Midway through their reign, other bands also came to the fore, inspired by these acts to take their own instruments and create something that might be heavier than what had come before.
This does not only include the framework of rock. In that time frame, we’ve blown everything from early underground punk to thrash metal to the glam rock era coming out of Sunset. There’s a lot to sift through here, but wherever you come across these bands, it’s a pretty sure bet for kickass music.
For most of the lacquered part of rock and roll, all the signs pointed towards the Sunset Strip. After all, it was the sunny rock and roll brand that was destined for Los Angeles, with the big hair and lipstick era being the calling card of everyone from Poison to Faster Pussycat. So… how did we get one of the biggest names of the era to come from Jersey?
Yeah, even though Bon Jovi definitely sounded like the hair metal bands of the era, these boys were proud to be from the East Coast, bringing some amazing licks with them on albums like Slippery When Wet. Although their style of rock and roll was perhaps a little softer than even some hair metal fans would have preferred at the time, the band’s talent for songwriting was miles above that of his contemporaries.
At a time when most bands sought to write songs about the rock and roll lifestyle with the occasional ballad added to the mix, Livin On a Prayer and Wanted Dead or Alive are songs with authentic stories to tell and hooks. amazing songs that make you want more every time you finish listening to them. While the band may have fitted in well during the hair metal movement, the songs they wrote are the kind of slices of life stories that Bruce Springsteen would have recognized in an instant.