Search - Billy Idol :: Rebel Yell

Rebel Yell
Billy Idol
Rebel Yell
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Classic Rock, Metal
  •  Track Listings (14) - Disc #1

With a permanently snarled upper lip and the perfect matinee-idol blond hair, Billy Idol made punk rock palatable for MTV and the masses. He did so by watering down punk's aggressive attack with dance grooves and stretches...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Billy Idol
Title: Rebel Yell
Members Wishing: 5
Total Copies: 1
Label: Capitol
Original Release Date: 1/1/1983
Re-Release Date: 10/25/1990
Album Type: Original recording reissued
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Classic Rock, Metal
Styles: New Wave & Post-Punk, Dance Pop, Album-Oriented Rock (AOR)
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
Other Editions: Rebel Yell (Exp), Rebel Yell
UPCs: 094632145024, 0724352069552, 094632145017, 724352069552

With a permanently snarled upper lip and the perfect matinee-idol blond hair, Billy Idol made punk rock palatable for MTV and the masses. He did so by watering down punk's aggressive attack with dance grooves and stretches of keyboards where no self-respecting punk would've dared. Essentially, he made pop music with a spare razor blade tossed in for fun. When it clicked, as it does on the anthemic title track of this, his career highlight, well, only an anarchist could complain. "Eyes Without a Face" and "Flesh for Fantasy" are two other early '80s radio stapes found here and they went further to establish Idol as a potential Vegas balladeer. This reissue contains some worthwhile demos. --Rob O'Connor

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Member CD Reviews

Lisa B. (Lisa) from CTR TUFTNBORO, NH
Reviewed on 9/16/2006...
An Idol fan must-have.
Corrina R. from LAS VEGAS, NV
Reviewed on 8/22/2006...
If you love Billy, you'll love this album. It's some of his best work.

CD Reviews

Rubbish remastering
J. Milner | Hull, UK | 12/03/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)

"I heard Rebel Yell again on VH1 a couple of weeks back and that prompted me to re-invest in the remastered version of this classic 80s album in the hope that the power and action of the original recording had been enhanced further. In nearly every case where i've bought a remastered version of an existing CD I have heard at least some sonic improvement. Not in this case. This must be the absolute worst example of remastering that i've ever heard. The original actually sounds better. Capitol Records should be ashamed of themselves for allowing this bass heavy, treble-free recording to ever make it to the pressing plant. The original was never that good and suffered from a poor mix but this new one has only enhanced the muffled and muddy sound even further. To say it's 24 bit is amazing as i've compared it to other modern remasterings and it doesn't even come close to the clarity and high resolution we expect from CDs these days.
It's a shame because it's a brilliant album, even now . If the music here doesn't get your adrenaline flowing then nothing will. What an album for turning the worst mood into a good one. The ultimate cheer-up CD. Sadly, now unlistenable thanks to so-called modern technology. Five stars for the music and minus 100 stars for the quality."
The Adventurous Sex Filled Life of a Young Billy Idol
Steven Menzer | Baltimore, MD United States | 12/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Aside from the chart topping rockers and ballads we've all heard on the radio, this album does not dissapoint with bad filler songs. It is great throughout because of a variety of tempos and styles. Rarely will you find a more seamless blend of punk, disco, new-wave, and hard-rock.

"Rebel Yell" immediately grabs you with its dramatic synth opening and launches you into the album with an infectious almost disco hard-rock beat. Idol's lyrics describe a sexy urban nightlife with the convenient rhyme of heaven and seven eleven. After a frantic Steve Stevens guitar-solo the song breaksdown like something washing up against a beach of phat beats.

"Daytime Drama" is a nice midtempo guitar-driven track generously drenched with synth. "Eyes Without A Face" lays down a gorgeously smooth bass groove, courtesy of Sal Cuevas, for one of the best loved ballads of the 80's with nice female backing vocals by Perri Lister. Showcasing great dynamics, an extended bridge section hits you with guitars and great lyrics. Once again Idol is able to take you into the underworld with a reality that leaves little doubt that he's lived the life he describes.

On "Blue Highway" Idol evokes the wanderlust and free-spiritedness of the American highway while confessing to the dangerousness of its appeal with "Yes, I almost died on a blue highway." Eerily, Idol would later almost lose a leg in a motorcycle accident in the late 90's.

In his preoccupation with sex, Idol gives Prince a run for his money on "Flesh For Fantasy", another sleek rock track with a nice hook.

On the sophisticated "Catch My Fall", which features saxophone by Mars Williams, Idol makes a plea for brotherly love. "Crank Call" deals with the annoyance of receiving them and what would push one to make crank calls. This is the only mediocre track.

"Do Not Stand In The Shadows" is punk rock at its best. It brims with a positive motivating high-energy. It's a rebel voice pushing you to get out from underneath whatever oppresses you but fully in the light of day free of any nihilistic tendency toward self-destruction. This is one of those great songs that radio seems to overlook.

The closing track from the original release, "The Dead Next Door" is a jaw-dropping ethereal gem of a song. In many ways the best song of the album, this is quite capable of giving you goosebumps. Idol reaches down for a deeper sense of meaning reflecting on the contrast between a wedding and death. This simple, yet powerful song is not to be missed.

The five bonus tracks are session takes and demos of the album songs in a rawer form that make this cd an excellent value. Stripped of its punchy production "Rebel Yell" reveals the spontaneous interplay between guitar and synth. "Motorbikin'" catches Idol emulating an almost Elvis-like croon, against a guitar driven beat. Devoid of saxophone, the demo of "Catch My Fall" displays a nice clean guitar sound from Stevens. Again on "Flesh For Fantasy", Stevens shows his deft playing doesn't depend on distortion. Rather he makes extensive use of delay, chorus and flanger effects here. And finally, the demo version of "Blue Highway" is in some ways better than the studio version. Here the soulful squeal of Steven's guitar blends with the synths in a way that's evocative of blue skies and the setting sun."