Dokken was my favorite band from the 1980's! I loved the fury of George Lynch's guitar playing, the heavy pounding from 'Wild' Mick Brown, the always steady bass of Jeff Pilson and of course, the smooth as silk vocals of Don Dokken. Not just known for their music, Dokken was a volatile unit that seemed to always being on the verge of breaking up... until the classic line-up broke up... twice.
Dokken (the band) have been recording and touring consistently but It has been a lot of years since Dokken, Lynch, Pilson and Brown played together under the Dokken banner. In 2016 that all changed when they reunited for a short tour of Japan and now we get to listen to what thousands of lucky fans got to witness!
Being released this Friday (4/20) from Frontiers Music is RETURN TO THE EAST LIVE 2016, a live album chronicling their return to the stage. Featuring 12 live songs, 2 acoustic and one new studio track, this album will make all Dokken fans happy. On stage the band tear through my favorites; Unchain The Night, Alone Again, Breaking The Chains and Dream Warriors (to name a few) and despite Don Dokken not sounding like he did before, the songs still sound magical! The songs may have been rearranged a bit but anytime you get these four guys together... awesome things happen! The way I listened to this album (my headspace) is that these are just 'new' versions of the classics songs we loved! Lynch is still one of the greatest players out there, Pilson really keeps it all together on bass and backing vocals and Wild Mick is an animal on the kit!!! This is all you need!!!! People have already begun the 'overdubbing' chant and all i can say to that is who cares!!!! I want an album I can listen to and enjoy, that's it! And this is what I got!!!!
The real bonus on this collection is the brand new song, It's Another Day that makes you melt back to days gone by. Full of the Dokken trademarks; perfect melody, great vocals and explosive playing, this song is easily one of the best the band has ever recorded, and that says a lot!!!
Also included are two acoustic songs; Heaven Sent and the so very underrated, Will The Sun Rise. Both performances strip the songs down to the basics and still are better than most any other band out there.
As someone who has bought EVERY Dokken album since BREAKING THE CHAINS, I can honestly say RETURN TO THE EAST LIVE (2016) is a welcome addition to their catalog. Thank you for putting the band together one at least one more time and thank you for documenting it for us to enjoy.
MATMAN RATING - 7.5 out of 10 broken drum sticks!!!
The Power Chords Podcast is a twice-monthly podcast celebrating rock and metal music of the '70s, '80s, '90s and beyond. The show is co-hosted by Matt Herring and Brian LeTendre.