Friday, June 23, 2017

Throwback Thursday: Montrose, by Montrose

Ever wonder where super star rock singer Sammy Hagar got his big start? As years go by it becomes less and less common knowledge, but in 1973 Hagar was hit up by then famous guitarist Ronnie Montrose seeing if he wanted to start a band after the two of them had been introduced to one another by a mutual friend. The two seemed to hit it off and quickly came out with what many consider to be one of the best hard rock records of the early/mid-70's: Montrose.

Montrose is blues tinged hard rock through and through from the first track to the end. It really doesn't give you much time to breathe. No slow tunes/ballads or anything. Even to this day that is a fairly uncommon practice for most rock n' roll and even heavy metal bands. That said, the whole album is all killer and no filler and is meant to be played at the highest volume you can get out of your stereo. It's big, crunchy, thundering, and yet at the same time melodic. Everything a good hard rock record should be.

Bad Motor Scooter is one of the most well known songs Montrose ever put out. Even if you didn't know it was them playing it, there is a good chance you have heard it at least once if you listen to classic rock with any sort of frequency. I just love how all throughout the song Ronnie makes his guitar sounds like it's a motor scooter revving and zipping up and down the country roads while at the same time knowing where to make things stay musical. It's an upbeat, loud, and will definitely get your blood pumping.

Rock Candy is another one of the more well known tunes Montrose put out in their short run with Hagar on the mic. It has this gigantic, thunderous, room filling vibe to it. You could definitely picture it blasting out through an arena with its steady rhythm and riff and soaring gritty vocals. In some ways it's reminiscent of Led Zeppelin, but at the same time it is still doing its own thing as a song. Montrose's guitar work is top notch here. You can hear all kinds of bluesy intricacies being noodled throughout it. The solo of course is up to Montrose's high standards.

Montrose is one of those albums over the years that I have been able to listen to every single tune on it from start to finish on repeat and not get tired of despite the fact it is all hard all the time. I'm sure you'll find multiple songs on it that you will like yourself. It's a must-have for anyone who is a big fan of Sammy Hagar or even classic rock in general. If you didn't know about this band and album, you have for sure been missing out.

Montrose, by Montrose receives 5 out of 5 stars.

Track List:

1. Rock the Nation
2. Bad Motor Scooter
3. Space Station #5
4. I Don't Want It
5. Good Rockin' Tonight
6. Rock Candy
7. One Thing on My Mind
8. Make It Last

Buy the album on Amazon:

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