Colin and I usually switch off for Classic album Tuesday, but I just had to go ahead and do it again as it seems like the ideal time to review Alice Cooper’s Billion Dollar Babies (An Alice Cooper pack was recently released for Rock Band) an album I very much enjoy.
Released in 1973, Billion Dollar Babies is often considered to be Alice Cooper and his band at their commercial and creative peak. It’s catchy, fun and most importantly, it rocks your socks off with great tunes and plenty of edge. For those who say Alice Cooper is no more than some shock rocker with a few radio hits, I think you’d be surprised to see that he’s actually got a whole catalogue of strong compositions and this is album is definitely worth checking out.
Debuting at number one on the billboard charts, many songs from Billion Dollar Babies would become instant staples of Cooper’s live shows. “No More Mr. Nice Guy” has certainly gone on to be a 70s rock classic, while “Elected” is often used as an encore to Cooper’s elaborate stage shows. The title track, which is a duet by Cooper and Donovan is another highlight and Cooper’s band is in absolute tip top shape.
Now Cooper may not be the most gifted rock vocalist and I’m really not sure what his contributions to the groups song-writing entails, aside from maybe contributing lyrics, but he’s got personality and that can take a rocker far. You got to give it to Cooper’s backing band (especially guitarist Michael Bruce) as the driving force behind these catchy numbers, but it’s Cooper that takes the engaging role as ringleader and ties it all together.
It’s funny that Alice Cooper is so embraced by the metal community, as this really doesn’t sound anything like heavy metal. This is basically just good old rock and roll with some occasionally quirky lyrics. I guess it’s more of Cooper’s image and love for horror that’s made him such a metal icon, but that’s not why I like him. I’m just about his music… Well his 70s music, cause anything after that is crap.
P.S. the original record came with a huge fold-out billion dollar bill, it’s pretty sweet my dad’s still got his.
Favorite Tracks: “Billion Dollar Baby”, “No More Mr. Nice Guy”, “Raped and Freezin”