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"...Twice Shy" is the 4th studio album by American hard rockers, Great White. It was released in 1989 on Capitol Records and produced by Alan Niven & Michael Lardie. The line-up for the album was Jack Russell (vocals), Mark Kendall (guitar), Michael Lardie (guitar), Tony Montana (bass) and Audie Desbrow (drums).
Great White never truly received the credit their music is due. Because of their long hair and leather jackets, they were thought of as being on the fringes of the glam genre, when in reality they are so much more. Their music is rock, with a touch of the blues infused throughout. Their guitar solos showcase talent instead of being merely filler for songs as it is with so many bands. The use of piano in some songs provides a softer touch where needed for those particular songs, yet doesn't drag down any of those songs.
Their songs have a depth and maturity that glam could never have, making them stand above the crowd they were lumped with. They have a clean lyrical content to their songs, yet that doesn't detract from the rock or make them feel dated. These songs, as with all their albums, have longevity to them because they don't follow any fad style. Great White put as much, or more effort into this album, showing they weren't willing to simply put out an album based on past glories, or just to keep themselves in the limelight.
"Move It" starts the album out brilliantly with a long intro that starts slow and builds in tempo. There is a stunning guitar solo included in the song. Lyrically it tells that sometimes you have to move on and make a change even if it isn't the popular choice or doing so takes you out of your comfort zone.
"Heart the Hunter" is the closest to metal of any song on the album, making it a bit heavier than most Great White songs. With great riffs, it is a rocker that also has a melody and lyrics you can sing along to. This one is a great take on the storyline of a woman doing a man wrong so he is on the hunt for a woman to treat him right, and let him shower her with the love he has in his heart.
"Hiway Nights" uses fun road metaphors to describe love and the complexities of a relationship. The lyrics are clever and fun, making it a love song that is far from sappy. It starts out with a great intro that lasts a while before the vocals come in.
"The Angel Song" includes acoustic piano which lends a harmony to the song. The feel of the piano is almost, but not quite classical. The song has a depth to it, due to the piano, which lends even more emotion to the lyrics about a young woman disillusioned with love and her dreams of stardom.
"Mista Bone" is a bouncier song, different than what you'd expect from rockers such as Great White, but with just enough of a rock edge to it to make it good. It is the one song on the album, quite possibly on any Great White album, that could almost be considered a dance party track. It is a love song with quite a bit of innuendo.
"Baby's on Fire" is a passionate, high energy song. With a very fast pace, it is a rock/metal blend. In a way, this one is more of a typical lust song, lyrically. The talent on guitars is what saves it from being a song to skip. For me it is the letdown song of the album.
"House of Broken Love" is very bluesy, and for a slow song, it really rocks. The depth of emotion of the lyrical content can be felt as he sings of love lost, a woman leaving and her husband being left behind in a home that once held so much promise and love. Easily one of Great White's most known songs, it never loses the emotion behind the lyrics no matter how many times you hear it.
"She Only" is a desperately sad ballad of a girl still waiting for someone to love her. The blend of bluesy rock and folk guitar make the song stand out. The vocals on this song are softer, almost as if they are reverent to the girl's feelings.
"Once Bitten, Twice Shy" tells of life on the road for a rock star. Although it is definitely a rock song, the use of a honky tonk melody on acoustic piano adds a unique touch. The chorus is a harmony, and has the feel of friends singing together.
In summary, this is a great effort by any means, and the fact it is a fourth album that is as strong as their first is a good indication they play for the love of music. Although there are only nine tracks on the album, attention has been paid to every detail without any of it being over produced or made to sound as though it is geared toward the masses. It is truly an album for people who love rock music. It does, however, have appeal to a wide audience, because it rocks enough to make rock fans happy, without being overly heavy. Because Great White can produce songs that rock, without the need for swear words, they can be listened to by all ages. I can recommend this album to everyone.
1. Move It
2. Heart the Hunter
3. Hiway Nights
4. The Angel Song
5. Mista Bone
6. Baby's on Fire
7. House of Broken Love
8. She Only
9. Once Bitten, Twice Shy
My rating: 9/10
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Move It
2 Heart The Hunter
3 Hiway Nights
4 The Angel Song
5 Mista Bone
6 Baby's On Fire
7 House Of Broken Love
8 She Only
9 Once Bitten Twice Shy