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  • Electric represents a welcome departure from the usual over-produced, effects-laden Cult style to a world devoid of wishy-washy effects and filled with Marshall stacks cranked to 10. Rock fans must have been blown away in 1987 when this album was released, as it defied the trend of sound excess prevalent in the 80’s. On Electric, Ian Astbury’s vocals cut to the bone while Billy Duffy’s guitars remain in your face for the entire album.Rick Rubin’s (producer) fondness for AC/DC is evident on tracks such as “Lil’ Devil” (i.e. “Who Made Who”), “Aphrodisiac Jacket” (i.e. “Night Prowler”), and “King Contrary Man” (could have been on any AC/DC album). In fact, at some points during the album Duffy could easily be mistaken for Angus Young.My three favorite tracks on the album – in order of preference – are “King Contrary Man”, “Peace Dog”, and “Outlaw”. “King Contrary Man” is probably the hardest rocking song on this album, though “Born To Be Wild” gives it a run for its money. I listened to this track for at least an hour, repeating it several times! The lyrics contain a nod to Mississippi Delta blues legend Robert Johnson (“Down at the crossroads temptin’ fate / Said yeah you can take my soul”)”Peace Dog” comes in a close second, featuring an excellent solo backed by a headbanging rhythm and vocal section. A notable line from the lyrics is “B-five-two baby, way up in the sky / Come drop your lovin’ on me child”.Finally, “Outlaw” fades in with a fast, driving riff that will infect your mind for days to come. Duffy’s searing solo on this track is memorable.Though some tracks are radio-friendly (“Wild Flower”, and the Stones-esque “Love Removal Machine”) they have just enough edge to keep hardcore hard rock fans from pressing fast-forward. While I generally dislike cover songs, “Born To Be Wild” on Electric is about as nasty and grinding as I’ve ever heard it played, and it pays homage to Steppenwolf.On an interesting side note, the 1997 CD remaster includes detailed liner notes – filled with all the lyrics, discography specific to Electric, and a biographical article by Pat Gilbert.I rate the overall album five stars because every track is strong; none deserve to be skipped. If you like to play it loud, live for crunching riffs, or like AC/DC – buy this album NOW.

    Posted on February 5, 2010