They could never decide if they wanted to be hard rock, hair, pop, or metal. Maybe that’s the formula that made them ‘Dokken’. This was the era when George Lynch had the ’skunk’ hairdo, but his guitar ability cannot be denied. Truly one of the most underated guitarists of his era along with Warren Demartini (RATT).
Metal Album Reviews[RSS]
This album shows you the earliest spark of a great band. George Lynch shows signs of the guitar virtuoso he would become, but for now the guitar playing is still somewhat pedestrian. Dokken’s trademark harmonies are all present here, however he sounds very different here than on following albums.
The songs are all of familiar style and topic to Dokken fans, love, lose of it, falling in it, etc…Except for “Stick To Your Guns”, has a more positive, stand up for yourself message to it, it’s got to be my least favorite track musically, but still sends a decent message. Another track I could do without would be “Young Girls”. “Seven Thunders” has Don’s beautiful melodies ringing in your ear long after it’s over. Anyone who knows Dokken knows the title track and “Paris is Burning”, no explanation needed there. “In The Middle” is great, has the same type of Don melody as in “Seven Thunders”, another great tune. “I Can’t See You” picks up the pace, its fast and somewhat heavy.
I have to take a moment to talk about “Felony”. An awesome song, but you should know that there are at least 2 versions of this song out there. One of them is on BACK IN THE STREETS, an EP of basically demos from 1979, which includes “Felony”. However this one is MUCH different than what’s heard on BTC. For one, I can’t be sure it actually is George Lynch on guitar, and even more so, the vocals. It’s Don, but it sounds barely like him, like maybe he sang it in his bedroom at 14 years old. And the chorus sounds like it’s sung by some guy who’s straining his voice, I guess it’s Don but it’s just REALLY different. I much prefer what I hear on BTC. It has the same tempo and feel as the bootleg version but with a much better sound and a great solo from Lynch. A true highlight of this album.
Fans of Dokken should already own this, but if you don’t have it and are thinking of doing so, in one word, do so! It’s a good example of a great band at their roots. 6/10
This album is good, despite the bad review previously given by some goofball. It’s from 1983 for God’s sake. Don Dokken was young, it’s obvious in his voice. The songs are good, most notably the title track, Paris is burning, Nightrider and Seven Thunders. Good harmony vocals throughout. The band played great, but I am surprised that noone mentioned how nice of a job Don Dokken did on rhythm guitar on this album. Too bad he could not have played on the later albums.
Overall this is a nice debut from a band that fit into the glam scene. It fits in with any other band’s debut album from that area.
Breaking The Chains(1983). Dokken’s first studio album. Here is a band that more often than not, is branded as just another glam metal act in the light of many other bands at the time. As a matter of fact, it was Dokken who brought forth the glam metal image in the mid-80’s. It’s too bad really because Dokken shows much more talent and dedication to good songwriting than most of the other bands at the time. But back in 1983 before they were noticed and genre-branded by MTV, Breaking The Chains was released. Dokken is clearly at an early stage of development at this point, but BTC proved that these guys had energy and talent, especially with Don Dokken’s melodic vocal style and George Lynch’s dexteritous and amazing guitar solos. Here’s the lowdown track-by-track: 1) Breaking The Chains- The anthemic title track became the album’s only real hit, though it is probably one of the best tracks on here. Mid-paced and heavy hitting. 10/10 2) In The Middle- A slow, light rocker with the main emphasis on the vocals. Great, but not the best. 9/10 3) Felony- Another mid-paced, but lighter track. What brings this song from being just “filler” is its incredible guitar solo. 8/10 4) I Can’t See You- Faster, but still very light. Like track 2, this song brings the most attention to the vocals. Pretty good. 8/10 5) Live To Rock (Rock To Live)- BTC’s fastest rocker. Lots of wild guitar playing to be found here as well as a catchy chorus section. 9/10 6) Nightrider- OUTSTANDING. This track is one of the album’s high points. Very fast and melodic at the same time. Nice guitar textures throughout. 10/10 7) Seven Thunders- Similar to the previous track, but played twice as slow. Not a bad song at all, though it doesn’t do anything to really stand out. 8/10 Young Girls- A head banging guitar driven mid-paced song. The chorus is a little weak, but Lynch’s guitar solo more than makes up for it. 9/10 9) Stick To Your Guns- Very much like the previous track. Again, even though the chorus is slightly off-par, the guitar work throughout makes this song worth a listen. 8/10 10) Paris Is Burning- THE BEST TRACK ON HERE! This album closer takes the listener all over the place starting with A MINUTE LONG, GOD-LIKE GUITAR SOLO by George Lynch, and then breaking into an all out melodic fast rocker. One of my all-time favorite Dokken tracks and it never disappoints. Don’s vocals soar on this one, too. 10/10 Though it is obviously not as polished and well-written as the next two albums Tooth And Nail(1984) and Under Lock And Key(1985), BTC showed that Dokken was a fully energetic rock musical force to be reckoned with. So it gets 4 stars. Don’t let the low rating discourage you though, because BTC is well worth the money and it is still much better than many of the more famous bands’ debut albums. It’s also my second favorite Dokken album (after ULAK that is). RECOMMENDED TO ALL WHO HAVE AN OPEN MIND FOR ROCK MUSIC.
This is the start of a great run from 1982-1988 Dokken in my opinion were one of the top 5 bands. Ok now the album
1.Breaking The Chains- 10/10 Great catchy title track that is still played live. Nice lyrics here and of course good vocals. Nice solo by George Lynch to go along with the good catchy riff.
2.In The Middle- 10/10 Great track very reminiscent of Rainbow in the 80’s. The softer section adds a nice feel to the album. A great solo by George too of course. The catchy chorus of “In The Middle” work very well too.
3.Felony- 10/10 Excellent bass line and great vocals by Don Dokken. Nice little solo by George and some cool screams by Don Dokken.
4.I Can’t See You- 10/10 Another good track here. Great catchy chorus A nice fast paced 80’s style song. Cool synths on this song too.
5. Live to Rock (Rock to Live)- 10/10 great fast paced Van Halen type song. eddie Van Halen type solo too by George Lynch. A great anthem that should have beena hit.
6.Nightrider- 10/10 Nice fast paced fun song with a great solo by George. Not too much more to say but this song rocks!
7.- Seven Thunders 10/10 One of the best tracks here with the overdubbed vocals and amazing screams by Don Dokken which are very reminiscent of Glenn Hughes!!! Awesome shredding by George Lynch in the solo!
8. Young Girls- 8/10 The riff is the same as Looks That Kill by Motley Crue on the Shout At The Devil album which came out the same year. Not one of the better tracks but still a nice song. A very good solo by George Lynch again.
9.Stick to Your Guns- 8/10 Another Van Halen type track. Actually this sounds like it could have been done by Van Halen. Don Dokken actually sounds a lot like David Lee Roth. George Lynch’s harmonized leads are cool too.
10.Paris Is Burning- 10/10 This is a live recording. This is one of the best songs Dokken ever did!! It features over a minute of George Lynch shredding by himself at the beggining!!! A lot like Eruption! The solo is amazing!!! A great rocking riff too. A great scream before another jaw dropping solo by George Lynch! Great chorus and lyrics too. And Don Dokken’s closing scream is incredible which he holds forever! Don’t miss out on this track! It’s worth the price on it’s own.
Dokken’s debut is still great 25 years after it was recorded…(it was released in 1981 in Germany and in 1983 in the US). The album is softer than there other albums and the production isn’t as good but still this is one of the better albums of the 80’s.
The band is
Don Dokken- Vocals, Guitar
George Lynch- Lead Guitar
Mick Brown- Drums
Juan Croucier- Bass, Vocals