Mr ‘Rock Opera’ the inimitable larger than life ‘Bat Out Of Hell’ singer Meat Loaf is back with a new LP, this time he has friends!
Meat Loaf – Hang Cool Teddy Bear
The round one is back! Hand Cool Teddy Bear is a glorious and star studded return to from from the larger than life american classic ‘rock opera’ star. His storytelling pop musings are everpresent but with the helping hand from some friends this album is a real treat of hard hitting rock and roll.
The collaborators range from guitarists Jon Bon Jovi (co-writing the showstopper Elvis in Vegas) to Jack Black & American Idoler Kara DioGuardi (sinigng backing vocals), plus every one’s favourite TV Doctor Hugh Laurie even takes a turn tinkling the ivories quite beautifully on If I Can’t Have You. Don’t let the mix of artists fool you this is definitely a Meatloaf record, just with some added oomph!
Justin Hawkins is the only guest who really stamps his style on the album with his trademark falsetto, unmistakable guitar sound, plus his tongue in cheek man rock lyrics on California Isn’t Big Enough (Hey There Girl). The real treat is the Justin collaboration Love Is Not Real with its huge riffing and stunning solo’s from guitar legends Brian May and Steve Vai.
Yes it’s big! Yes its slighly cheesy! Yes it’s suprisingly good! Meatloaf has finally stopped trying to recreate Bat Out Of Hell and is now firmly rocking it in the modern day!
Mr Flowers Says:
What’s with this spate of rock gods returning with an army of collaborators these days? Meat Loaf returns with his rock opera sound perfectly intact after over 4 decades. The chances are you’ll already know if you like this or not.
The duet with Kara DioGuardi doesn’t quite match the highs of the duets that defined Meat Loaf’s career, but she equips herself well and belts out the rock choruses well. The Jack White collaboration on Like A Rose is probably the most modern sounding on the album, and Elvis In Vegas ends the album with a fittingly epic Springsteen-like effort. Another highlight is California Isn’t Big Enough, one of the Justin Hawkins penned songs on the album, whose chorus features the brilliant lyric, “I can barely fit my dick in my hands, ooowoahh”. Some of the ballads don’t work so well, but it’s not anything that can’t be rescued with a guitar solo here or there.
So it’s an album with some pretty good songs on it, but if you’ve never been a Meat fan there’s nothing here that’s going to be changing your mind.
DoesItRock Overall Score: 7.5/10