What it sounds like: Classic, early 90s power ballad rock ‘n’ roll.
Bad Company’s last album with lead vocalist Brian Howe, Here Comes Trouble, is getting a ten out of ten score from NoCoda.
There’s no way around it.
Tens are hard to come by. They shouldn’t be handed out like candy at a Fourth of July parade – I am a huge believer in that. But save it to say – there may be other great Bad Company records, but this is the only one that is going to get a straight ten. When an eleven song record plays out just a greatest hits record, you’ve accomplished something awesome. It’s being done here.
“But isn’t this lame? Early 90s power ballads? Look at these freaking song titles! Brokenhearted? Little Angel? HERE COMES TROUBLE? Son, you have gone and lost your mind.”
No sir, I have not lost my mind. Your heart simply isn’t open, or the love that shines out on these songs is too emotional for you to be in touch with.
“Love?! In these songs?!”
Yes, love in these songs – without a doubt.
I readily admit – I am a sucker in the biggest way for 80s and 90s love songs. Remember those Monster Ballads compilations that were sold on TV back in in 1999? You better believe my thirteen-year-old self asked my dad if he would order those cassette tapes off of the television with his credit card, and I don’t think he was ever prouder of me. I remember those things coming in the mail. It was golden.
This record is from 1992. We’re not seeing power ballads in the sense of Warrant or Poison – they’re slightly more updated than that – but still completely “power ballad” in every sense – just without the long hair and ultra-high pitched vocals.
You know how I’m going to approach this?
I’m going to quickly tell you why each one of these tracks kicks this record out of the park.
1) How About That
More of a mid-tempo rocker, the lead off tells us why Steve may pretend to have a heart of stone, but he’s hands-down crazy for this chick. How about that? Every time I see your face / it lights up the whole damn place. You better believe it does.
2) Stranger Than Fiction
One of the two tracks on this record that has nothing to do with love. A rock and roll number dealing in an unnamed wanderer trying to prove himself to the world. That good boy won’t be slain, oh no.
3) Here Comes Trouble
The other non-love track. They had to throw two of ’em in here, cause if they didn’t, geez, the world might actually see these guys for who they really are – freaking heart-on-their-sleeve lovers of love. Great track – probably the heaviest of the bunch, but let’s get on to the primaries…
4) This Could Be The One
My favorite track on the record. It’s musically and lyrically incredible – and that solo three-quarters of the way through will wreck your world. Ooh, this could be the one / The one that I’ve been waiting for / Ooh, this could be the one / And I’m not fooling around. If you don’t want to feel like this, you don’t have a heart beating in your chest.
5) Both Feet In The Water
Put both feet in the water – put ’em in the water, baby / Put your fears in the past – put ’em in the past, yeah / Forget what people have told you – don’t listen / If you want our loving to last. I think Copeland’s Aaron Marsh would agree with those lines when he wrote the chorus to the final track off of In Motion.
6) Take This Town
Certainly the most lighthearted track on the record, almost done in a pop-rock style! It’s a great, fun addition.
7) What About You
Remember that time that your heart got split in half? Remember how badly you wanted to say to that person – “Baby, I want us back together. Let’s put the past in the past. What About You?” Yeah – I know you remember that. Welcome to that moment condensed down to four minutes.
8) Little Angel
Not a ballad – it’s actually a good mid-tempo pop track, and what a chorus! The BGV’s are super on-point.
9) Hold Onto My Heart
I’m pretty sure that the same girl from What About You gave him an answer to his question, and it wasn’t the one he was hoping for.
“Justin….JUSTIN! What up JT, baby? Lovin’ this new track. You know I be on my suit ‘n’ tie too, you know it baby, haha! For sure, for sure. Yo, I was thinkin’ the other day about my favorite song of yours…what was that sweet track you laid down on your last record? You know, about the girl gettin’ what she had comin’? Oh yeah, oh yeah! What goes around goes around goes around comes all the way back around…that’s my jam!”
11) My Only One
Save for a very few choice lines (ex: I miss you, or won’t you come back again) – have you been looking for a song for your wedding day? You want power and simplicity all rolled into one that you could actually slow dance to? Are you sick to death of Patrick Monahan trying to capitalize on the market?
If you had to listen to two tracks: This Could Be The One / My Only One