Alice Cooper: 1989-1991

When you hear the name Alice Cooper…right away you think of the term “Shock Rock” a form of Heavy Metal that uses a combination of violence and dark props such as Live Boa Constrictors, Fake Blood, Guillotines, Electric Chairs, ETC. Alice Cooper was born Vincent Damon Furnier, in Detroit Michigan in 1948. His Musical Career has spanned more than four decades. His band was formed in 1971 as The Alice Cooper Band and their first album was “Love It To Death,”which featured the hit singles “I’m Eighteen” and “School’s Out”. In 1972, their second album was formed called “Million Dollar Babies.”. In 1975, Alice went solo and released the concept album “Welcome to My Nightmare”. In total, Alice has released 26 Studio Albums, 19 coming as a solo artist. Cooper is credited for bringing stagecraft to the Metal Scene using horror imagery to change and shape the sound and image of Heavy Metal forever. He was the Marilyn Manson, 30 years before Marilyn was formed.
This Article will focus on a short time period in Alice Cooper’s career between 1989-1991. During these years Alice Cooper released the albums “Trash” in 1989 and “Hey Stoopid” in 1991. Alice Cooper used many guest musicians (vocalists, guitarists, and Drummers) on these two albums. The album Trash featured his first top ten single “Poison” since 1977 an put Alice back on the map. Alice Cooper sought the assistance of Desmond Child, a famous song writer and producer to make this album a hit. “Only My Heart Talkin” used Steven Tyler from Aerosmith on Background Vocals. Jon Bon Jovi sang back up vocals on the Title Track ” Trash”, while Joey Kramer played Drums and Tom Hamilton played Bass. Then there was “Kip Winger” singing backup on “I’m Your Gun.”. Joe Perry of Aerosmith played additional guitar on “House of Fire”, Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi) additional guitar on “Hell is Living Without You”, Kane Roberts guitar on “Bed of Nails,” Guy-Mann Dude additional guitar on “Why Trust You” “Spark in the Dark” and “This Maniac’s in Love With You”. Mark Frasier and Jack Johnson also provided additional guitar solos on “Trash”. Finally, many other vocalists including Desmond Child, Louie Merlino, Alan St. John and a host of others were used on many of the songs on the album. The record was a huge hit and brought Alice Cooper back to the threshold of Mainstream Metal. Desmond Child was brilliant with his work that he had done with Aerosmith and Bon Jovi and he brought the same energy and creativity to the album “Trash”. I mean, the album would have probably been a success without all of the guests, but these specific guests all brought something special to the table. Alice Cooper was not the first musician to use multiple guests, but this was the first album to incorporate this much talent into an entire set list. Poison is one of Alice Cooper’s top songs and give Kudos to Desmond Child for putting the album together.
The sequel to the super album “Trash” was “Hey Stoopid,” which was released in 1991 after a long world wide tour. “Hey Stoopid” used the same album makeup as it included a wide variety of guest appearances. First the Title Track…with an awesome theme about drug use, suicide and violence. “Hey Stoopid” included guest guitarists Slash, Joe Satriani, and Stef Burns. The song also included dramatic background vocals by Ozzy Osbourne. The song made the Top 20 on the Billboard 100. The song “Burning our Bed” was co-wrote by Al Pitrelli, and included Joe Satriani on Guitar. “Feed My Frankenstein”, another hit off of the album featured Steve Vai and Joe Satriani on Guitar, Nikki Sixx on Bass and the West Coast Gang on Backup Vocals. “Die For You” was co-wrote by Mick Mars and Nikki Sixx…and featured Mick Mars on lead Guitar. Other guests on this album included Vic Pepe, Al Pitrelli, Desmond Child, Vinnie Moore and Chris Cornell. These two albums were the high point for Alice Cooper
In the modern Metal era and brought excitement back to his act. Even during the tour…some of the guests would appear unannounced…much to the delight of the fans. I would strongly recommend both of these albums for
any true Metal Fan. They both bring the perfect balance of sound and quality…as well as different styles of music as each player brings something different to the table. Blast “Hey Stoopid” and you will hear some sick guitar riffs with Slash and Joe Satriani going back and forth and just when u think nothing else can happen…you hear Ozzy’s distinct voice in the background, which is a true match to Alice Cooper. If you are an eighties/nineties metal fan…these albums are classics. ROCK ON!