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 Can you judge a band by their ballads?

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Hadley
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PostSubject: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 22, 2014 1:40 am

If the first song you hear by a band happens to be their ballad, is that a decent way of figuring out what their sound is like, or does one have to hear one of their "regular" songs to get a general idea of the band's sound?
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 22, 2014 1:57 am

Depends on the band I think. The Beatles sound like themselves whether they are doing ballads or rockers. Thin Lizzy's hard rockers are all ballads anyway, some are just heavier than others.

If you're talking about metal? Yeah, you would normally need to hear one of the heavy tracks. If I wanted to turn someone onto Judas Priest I wouldn't pick Last Rose Of Summer as the first track to play them.
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mc666
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 22, 2014 2:31 am

S.D. wrote:
If I wanted to turn someone onto Judas Priest I wouldn't pick Last Rose Of Summer as the first track to play them.  
True, but damn that's a great song.

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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 22, 2014 2:34 am

mc666 wrote:
S.D. wrote:
If I wanted to turn someone onto Judas Priest I wouldn't pick Last Rose Of Summer as the first track to play them.  
True, but damn that's a great song.

Totally, I've always loved it, but it's not exactly representative of their sound.
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chewie
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 22, 2014 3:13 am

I did that with Saigon Kick. Love Is On The Way was played all over the radio in San Jose. I thought that they were some cheeseball third rate Dokken rip off. Then I heard the rest of the album ten years later....

Excellent band!!!!!
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jstate
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 22, 2014 6:49 am

I always felt two big mistakes bands could make was choosing the first single as a ballad or worse yet a cover song. Anytime a group got a hit with a ballad I would've wanted to hear something else off the album to get a better feel of what they were about. I love ballads as much as anyone but to gauge a band's sound I'd have needed to hear more.
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Boris2008
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 22, 2014 6:58 am

I can pretty much judge a great record by it's ballad or ballads. Fade to Black, Remember Tomorrow, A Tale that Wasn't Right, great ballads from great albums. Sucky bands tend to write sucky ballads as well (or good bands going through a sucky phase, I'm looking at you Death Angel).
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journeyman
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 22, 2014 9:04 pm

Yes. It is much harder to write a ballad. If done well, it is always remembered and could very well lead to big time success. If not done well, it will still be remembered, but as a colossal screw up and a point of un-forgiveness for fans. A ballad by a band and written by the band can be representative of what they sound like, which isn't always the case. Label pressures and outside writers come to mind.
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martinsane
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Fri Jan 24, 2014 11:35 am

There were a number of bands in the late 80's early 90's that became popular due in part to a crafty ballad.

Extreme's More Than Words comes immediately to mind. Great song, certainly WELL OVERPLAYED, but not their bread and butter.
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MetalRob331
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Fri Jan 24, 2014 1:20 pm

Love me some ballads and there are a lot of bands I've come to love based off of hearing a ballad first!!
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jstate
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Sat Jan 25, 2014 10:01 am

I love ballads too. But when it became mandatory to have one it lost a lot of it's appeal for me. I saw Extreme once that song hit and it was funny because a good portion of the sold out crowd was there solely for that reason. To their credit Extreme managed to win them over with the stuff that wasn't More Than Words.

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metalinmyveins
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Sat Jan 25, 2014 12:09 pm

Maybe unfairly, but the answer would be yes! Do I even have to say the title of the Mr. Big song? It didn't matter how much better the rest of the album was, I find that song to be absolutely embarrassing!
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MetalRob331
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Sat Jan 25, 2014 2:01 pm

metalinmyveins wrote:
Maybe unfairly, but the answer would be yes! Do I even have to say the title of the Mr. Big song? It didn't matter how much better the rest of the album was, I find that song to be absolutely embarrassing!

But without that song a lot of fans wouldn't of been introduced to the band. Therefore it was a genius move and IMO a genius song!!!
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brokentulsa
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Mon Jan 27, 2014 12:51 am

Yes...when I hear a sappy ballad..think stryper..it turns me off and I tend to avoid the album. When it is a cool ballad with some great guitar work..think alone again or home sweet home..wicked solos...it makes me want to buy the albums.
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jettafiend
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Mon Jan 27, 2014 2:22 pm

brokentulsa wrote:
Yes...when I hear a sappy ballad..think stryper..it turns me off and I tend to avoid the album. When it is a cool ballad with some great guitar work..think alone again or home sweet home..wicked solos...it makes me want to buy the albums.

I am of the opposite of opinion here. I think that First Love off of SUC is a prime example of a well written ballad, and Honestly, is not so great. Home Sweet Home is not a great song, even though it helped propel the Crue to new heights.

When comparing ballads to the overall catalog then it really depends on the band, as mentioned previously, I think that Honestly is not a good representation of Stryper's sound but First Love definitely is. November Rain is another example of a fantastic ballad and I think that the song represented the album in itself. 18 & Life definitely fit Skid Row's sound at the time but I remember You just does not fit on the album. Wasted Time from Slave to the Grind is an absolutely fantastic ballad.
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corplhicks
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Mon Jan 27, 2014 3:37 pm

Ballads had more relevance to me before I married. Being lonely, sentimental, and pensive, love songs had more relevance back then. Now there are very few that do it for me, and most of them are of the semi-ballad variety (Years of Decay, Touch of Evil, Alone You Breathe). I do enjoy I Saw Red because of its brilliant use of ironic lyricism. And Jetta is right about Wasted Time. Still gives me goosebumps, and extremely relevant since I've lost friends and family to hard drugs.
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jettafiend
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:14 pm

corplhicks wrote:
Ballads had more relevance to me before I married. Being lonely, sentimental, and pensive, love songs had more relevance back then. Now there are very few that do it for me, and most of them are of the semi-ballad variety (Years of Decay, Touch of Evil, Alone You Breathe). I do enjoy I Saw Red because of its brilliant use of ironic lyricism. And Jetta is right about Wasted Time. Still gives me goosebumps, and extremely relevant since I've lost friends and family to hard drugs.

Ugh! I Saw Red is probably one of the worst songs ever recorded, IMO.
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Fat Freddy
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:38 pm

jstate wrote:
I love ballads too.  But when it became mandatory to have one it lost a lot of it's appeal for me.  I saw Extreme once that song hit and it was funny because a good portion of the sold out crowd was there solely for that reason.  To their credit Extreme managed to win them over with the stuff that wasn't More Than Words.


I saw Extreme shortly before "More Than Words" blew up big (in fact, I am pretty sure they introduced it by saying "This is going to be our next single") and while they played it, you could've heard a pin drop. Then when they finished the whole place went bananas. I knew right then and there that the song was going to be HUGE.... and it was.

...unfortunately it also became the albatross around their neck, cuz everyone expected their next single to sound just like it, and when it didn't, everybody jumped ship.

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James B.
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:37 pm

i remember a neighborhood redheaded chick coming over to my garage cause I told her that I had the album that "Beth" was on, my plans included more than putting on a record. Of course I choked cause at 11, you are not the Johnny Buck Stud you envision yourself to be. I even played "Do You Love me" a couple of times in a row to no avail. So I am grateful to Stan Penridge for writing a song that gave a kid the nerve to hit on a gal from the same side of the tracks.

Regarding Skid Row's "I remember you", my first opinion was that dude is too pretty to sing that great.
IMHDO.....Skid Row is one of the better bands from that time frame. I like the ballads on the second album better myself. Being a former heroin addict, "Wasted Time" is really close to home. I think that "In A Darkened Room" is a pretty deep subject compared to most "lovey dovey" ballads of that era. "Quicksand Jesus" is well written, but I still scratch my head tryin to figure out it's synopsis, if any. "Into Another" is another well written ballad by them.

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corplhicks
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:59 pm

^^Agreed, James; their ballads have quite a bit more depth than the usual mix.

jettafiend wrote:
corplhicks wrote:
Ballads had more relevance to me before I married. Being lonely, sentimental, and pensive, love songs had more relevance back then. Now there are very few that do it for me, and most of them are of the semi-ballad variety (Years of Decay, Touch of Evil, Alone You Breathe). I do enjoy I Saw Red because of its brilliant use of ironic lyricism. And Jetta is right about Wasted Time. Still gives me goosebumps, and extremely relevant since I've lost friends and family to hard drugs.

Ugh! I Saw Red is probably one of the worst songs ever recorded, IMO.

Wha?? I remember hearing it for the first time, the verse making me think "aww a pretty poetic love ballad," and then getting smacked in the face by the depressing chorus. I don't know if anyone has ever used that twist before. And that melody sticks forever.
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Dark Horseman
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:09 pm

You can judge Testament by their ballads 'cause they are awesome.
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brokentulsa
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 29, 2014 2:00 pm

If I was going to put together a power ballad album with 10 songs it would be this...

Alone Again...Dokken
Home Sweet Home...Motley Crue
Shot In the Dark...Ozzy
Dreaming about you..Kick Axe
Coming Right Down On Top of Me..April Wine
To Feel That Feeling Again..Coney Hatch
Rescue Me...Y&T
Is This Love...Whitesnake
Wasted Time ..Skid Row
Hideaway...Leatherwolf
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Hadley
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Wed Jan 29, 2014 7:48 pm

Shot in the Dark is a ballad?
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80s Metal Lady
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Fri Jan 31, 2014 1:07 am

Hadley wrote:
Shot in the Dark is a ballad?

Ha! I thought the same thing! "Killer Of Giants" off The Ultimate Sin is closer to being a ballad, though it also rocks. Great song.
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corplhicks
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PostSubject: Re: Can you judge a band by their ballads?   Fri Jan 31, 2014 1:37 am

80s Metal Lady wrote:
Hadley wrote:
Shot in the Dark is a ballad?

Ha! I thought the same thing! "Killer Of Giants" off The Ultimate Sin is closer to being a ballad, though it also rocks. Great song.

Maybe he was thinking of Close My Eyes Forever? Good ballad, even if it a Lita track.
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