Rocking debut from Enuff Z'nuff
R. Gorham | 09/21/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"THE BAND: Donnie Vie (lead vocals, guitars, keyboards), Derek Frigo (lead guitars, R.I.P.), Chip Z'nuff (bass, guitars, vocals), Vikki Foxx (drums & percussion).
THE DISC: (1989) 10 songs clocking in at approximately 43 minutes. Included with the disc is a 10-page booklet containing song titles/credits/times, song lyrics, black & white individual band member photos, and thank you's. All songs written by Vie and/or Z'Nuff, except "Finger On The Trigger by Vie and Frigo. This is the band's 1st studio album. Recorded at Royal Recorders, Lake Geneva, WI. Label - ATCO / Atlantic Records.
COMMENTS: A great start to an amazing and unique band from the Chicago suburbs (Blue Island, IL). Caught somewhere between Cheap Trick and The Beatles - the songs are groovy and instantly catchy (the band has sighted The Beatles as one of their major influences). Thinking back, 1989 was an incredible year in the world of long haired rock music - outside of the established big names of the time like Aerosmith, Van Halen, Scorpions and Motley Crue - there were many bands just getting their feet wet. 1989 gave us some amazing albums from Blue Murder (self titled debut), Mr. Big (debut), Skid Row (debut), "Shark Island (debut "Law Of The Order"), Giant (debut "Last Of The Runaways"), L.A. Guns ("Cocked & Loaded"), King's X ("Gretchen Goes To Nebraska"), White Lion ("Big Game"), Junkyard (debut)... and this 1st release from Enuff Z'nuff. Donny Vie's slightly scratchy vocals are full of attitude and Frigo's guitars full of swagger. Frigo's guitar solos are amazing... he was truly one of the greats flying under the radar. Foxx's drumming and flashy high-hat work reminds me of a young Steve Smith (Journey). Two hits came from this debut - the infectious opener "New Thing" (singing about the infatuation and the beginnings of a new relationship), and its polar opposite "Fly High Michelle" (substance abuse and love lost). Other highlights include the power ballad "I Could Never Be Without You" and the bluesy tracks "She Wants More" and "In The Groove". The last track, "Finger On The Trigger", is an all out guitar assault by Frigo... an upbeat and exciting way to end the album. In my opinion, Enuff Z'nuff never got the critical acclaim they deserved. They came onto the music scene when hair/glam bands were a dime a dozen (though the band was never really a hair/glam band per say), and grunge was right around the corner. If you purchase only one or two of their albums - this debut, or their 2nd release "Strength" (1991) is the place to start (4.5 stars)."
Pauloha | 10/16/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Good first album. Bought this back when it was released off the strength of Fly High Michelle, which still sounds awesome. New Thing is okay, as is Hot Little Summer Girl. Little Indian Angel is a good track as well. They were just warming up with this debut, and their efforts that followed just got better and more personal."
Sometimes More Than Enuff
Otto Luck | Detroit | 06/18/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"As difficult as this may be to imagine, Enuff Z'nuff's crackling debut is essentially bubblegum disguised as lite metal disguised as power pop by four hair farmers masquerading as Poison operating under cover in the federal witness protection program as Hanoi Rocks. And they're from Chicago, which probably explains the Illinois juju here, singer Donnie Vie a dead ringer for Cheap Trick's Robin Zander, from neighboring Rockford.
Although he tends to over rely on some sort of string-bending hocus pocus which sonically approximates Barbaro getting his first whiff of the glue factory, hooks burst forth in a technicolor splash from Derek Frigo's guitar on perfect-world hit singles like "New Thing," "Fly High Michelle," and "Little Indian Angel," the latter a 100-watt bust-up between Jeff Lynn-era Move and the 1910 Fruitgum Company.
And lest there's any doubt left what motivates these guys by the time track eight rolls around, there's the snappy, Crue-on-pop-rocks prance of the not-so-double-entendre "Kiss the Clown," and its not-so-subliminal suggestion: "bend over baby, this ain't love."
I still can't decide if it's a complete piss-take, mind-numbingly rote and overdone, or bloody genius. Let's split the difference."