The 4 Horsemen – No one Mentioned It Was Straightforward
(Picture credit score: Def American)
1. No one Mentioned It Was Straightforward
2. Rockin’ Is Ma Enterprise
3. Drained Wings
4. Can’t Cease Rockin’
5. Needed Man
6. Let it Rock
7. Sizzling Head
9. Homesick Blues
10. 75 Once more
11. Lookin’ For Bother
12. I Want A Thrill/ Somethin’ Good
The 4 Horsemen was fashioned by bassist Child Chaos (Stephen Harris) in 1988. Chaos had achieved time in Zodiac Mindwarp and the Love Response and (briefly) The Cult, however moved to LA, modified his identify to Haggis, switched to rhythm guitar, wrote a bunch of songs, and fashioned the 4 Horsemen with one Frank C Starr, a refugee from the NYC glam-metal scene.
The songs had been amped-up traditional rockers, with all of the exhausting rock crunch of the Cult combined with Southern riff rock, and pushed proper excessive by Starr’s hyperactive screech. Critics beloved ‘em as a result of they thought all of the macho swagger was ironic, and the children beloved them as a result of they knew it wasn’t.
They got here to the eye of Rick Rubin, who signed them to Def American. In 1990, the band was all set to go to New York and report No one Mentioned It Was Straightforward, and success was simply across the nook. Then Frank bought busted on a drug cost and went to jail for six months.
Frank needed to sing one of many songs over the telephone from jail, however they finally bought the job achieved. No one Mentioned It Was Straightforward hit the streets in 1991, and match proper in with the whiskey drinkin’, poker cheatin’, tattooed and bruised biker metallic aesthetic so gloriously prevalent within the early 90s (Circus of Energy, The Cult, Junkyard, Little Caesar, Horse London, and Two Bit Thief had been all revving related engines on the time).
Drained Wings, the album’s sole (pseudo) ballad, was a shameless Lynyrd Skynyrd-inspired southern rock rambler, and its video bought a good quantity of airplay on MTV.
Each week, Album of the Week Membership listens to and discusses the album in query, votes on how good it’s, and publishes our findings, with the purpose of giving individuals dependable opinions and the broader rock neighborhood the possibility to contribute.
Different albums launched in September 1991
- Tin Machine II – Tin Machine
- Horrorscope – Overkill
- Roll the Bones – Rush
- Vacationers and Thieves – Blues Traveler
- Blow Up – The Smithereens
- Catfish Rising – Jethro Tull
- On Each Road – Dire Straits
- Psychotic Supper – Tesla
- No Extra Tears – Ozzy Osbourne
- Fairly on the Inside – Gap
- Nonetheless Really feel Gone – Uncle Tupelo
- Use Your Phantasm I – Weapons N’ Roses
- Use Your Phantasm II – Weapons N’ Roses
- Reside Practice to Heartbreak Station – Cinderella
- Screamadelica – Primal Scream
- Shake Me Up – Little Feat
- Trompe le Monde – Pixies
- Waking Up the Neighbours – Bryan Adams
- Wretch – Kyuss
- Badmotorfinger – Soundgarden
- Blood Sugar Intercourse Magik – Crimson Sizzling Chili Peppers
- Ceremony – The Cult
- Hymns to the Silence – Van Morrison
- Nevermind – Nirvana
- Show You Unsuitable – Prong
- Rock ’til You Drop – Standing Quo
- Increase – Swervedriver
- Storyville – Robbie Robertson
What they stated…
“Whereas Sizzling Head lifts its major riff instantly from AC/DC’s Rock’n’Roll Damnation, the marginally extra authentic Drained Wings really acquired some MTV rotation due to its mellower Southern rock vibe and slide guitars. Rounded out by the simple strut of Moonshine, the all-out fury of Lookin’ for Bother, and the lazy jamming of I Want a Thrill/Somethin’ Good, this album scores low on originality, however excessive on honesty and charisma. A positive winner for lovers of no-image, no-class rock & roll.” (AllMusic)
“Guitarists Dave Lizmi and Haggis rely an excessive amount of on the Angus Younger e-book of chord progressions. And singer Frank C. Starr might loosen up with the Bon Scott impression, too. It wouldn’t damage if the 4 Horsemen gave their steeds a relaxation and strove for a semblance of originality the following time they hit the dusty studio path. (The Georgia Strait)
“1991’s No one Mentioned it Was Straightforward was one of many best rock albums to ever come from the grunge decade that you just’ve by no means heard of. The 4 Horsemen had been a multinational band, with Rick Rubin on the helm on the legendary Sound Metropolis studios, and one of many best rock star frontmen to ever grace the stage: the late Frank C. Starr.” (Mike Ladano)
What you stated…
Chris Wigmore: It’s 1992 and I’m up entrance within the ratty van my band used to get to gigs in. We swung by Cheddar to select up the drummer. A good-looking lad, solely ever listened to AC/DC, the Cult and the Black Crowes. He ejects our Pantera tape and slots in a C90… and I get to listen to No one Mentioned it was Straightforward for the primary time in my life.
The pure pleasure I felt listening to this report is felt each time I put it on. It feels like denim, stratocasters and whiskey. There’s hooks galore, songs about preventing and fucking, songs with ‘rock’ within the title, all served up with plenty of swagger. Rick Rubin brings some cool to the sport, and ex Zodiac Mindwarp/Cult bassist Haggis brings some credibility. The result’s a strong rock’n’roll report, tightly produced with some nice songs. No one stated it was simple, however these guys made it sound simple, man.
Robert Dunn: I really wrote some notes for this one, noting that No one Mentioned It Was Straightforward sounded just like the Cult however was a strong opener, then a number of references to AC/DC, Crimson Sizzling Chili Peppers, even ZZ High. Nevertheless by halfway by means of aspect two (following the order they had been in on YouTube) I wrote “beginning to get fed up” which probably says extra about me than the band.
I’ve completely no objection to a little bit of Southern boogie with a tough edge, however that’s all there was. First rate sufficient songs, however the rock galaxy is suffering from bands who had been good however did not fairly have that further one thing to raise them above their friends.
Having stated that, I believe that destiny was unkind to this band in the identical approach that it was to UFO, in that they took a number of stuff from the previous and took a step ahead, just for different bands to select up that baton and go additional with it. Personally I’d hearken to tracks from this album once more, however an entire album is a bit an excessive amount of for me. I guess they had been superior stay although.
Nigel Lancashire: I’d by no means even heard of the 4 Horsemen till this suggestion. Sadly, it’s not a beforehand undiscovered Ric Aptitude album (unhappy skilled wrestling joke). And once more sadly, I can’t actually hear why this report ought to be thought-about a traditional.
At greatest, it’s what feels like a patchy studio venture for a Rick Rubin-created band to find ‘their’ sound, after which not agree whether or not they wish to be Bon Scott-era AC/DC, the Cult (little question picked due to Haggis’ involvement – it’d say ‘Made within the USA’ on the album, but it surely’s a Welsh bloke on geetar) the Stones or the Black Crowes.
Nearly the very last thing it appears to be is the actual deal. I actually can not hear a singular sound or a cohesive report right here, and though nothing offends, not a lot impresses both. There’s promise within the Allman’s-like I Want a Thrill/One thing Good however then, that introduces one more type experiment to the package deal.
In researching the band, I’ve learn that they had been hampered by arrests and drug issues (principally singer Frank Starr) and common life-style misfortunes, however brutally, on the energy of this, these 4 Horsemen had been driving to nowhere nation anyway.
Carl Black: That is what a t-shirt can do for you. James Hetfield from Metallica was persistently sporting a 4 Horseman t-shirt when Metallica had been at their peak. A lot of individuals bought tricked into pondering they had been a brilliant new, innovative thrash band. How unsuitable might you be.
I can see why Hetfield favored them presently. All of the issues he wished: hard-rocking, Southern rock with a shout of AC/DC, however might by no means do as followers of Metallica could be extra confused than once they heard the snare drum on St Anger for the primary time. A strong album and I throughly loved it as I used to be portray my French Home windows.
Iain Macaulay: A enjoyable album that sadly loses the impact in a short time on repeated listens as type over substance trickles to the floor. A very good album for the historical past of Rick Rubin’s manufacturing if nothing else. Undoubtedly not a traditional although.
John Davidson: The 4 Horsemen play straight up exhausting boogie blues – generally extra exhausting rock, generally extra southern boogie.
Opener No one Mentioned it Was Straightforward has them in Georgia Satellites mode. The guitars are good and the marginally homespun refrain and handclaps set the tone for the album
Rockin Is Ma Enterprise Is not a foul track however If Glen Danzig had fronted an AC/DC covers band it might need sounded lots like this.
Drained Wings sounds just like the Black Crowes ought to have sounded or possibly extra like Primal Scream at their greatest.
Cannot Cease Rockin’ is an easy stomper within the storage type – Suzi Quatro could be happy with the repetition of the title as refrain.
Needed Man sees them aping the Rolling Stones extra instantly – however with out the advantage of doing it first.
By the point they get to Let It Rock and Sizzling Head they’re again to AC/DC once more
Actually I might go on, however theres solely a lot you possibly can take. It is fairly competent however nothing new or completely different that makes me wish to hearken to this once more. A beneficiant 5.
Glenn McDonald: The 4 Horsemen are, as a band, nearly however not fairly a brand new one on me. And one track apart, the album is certainly a primary time hear. I vaguely bear in mind the down-home black and white video for the title monitor airing on MTV again in 91, incongruously sandwiched between the likes of Man In A Field by Alice In Chains and Jesus Christ Pose by Soundgarden.
At all times favored it, however regardless of being a fan of Georgia Satellites and The Black Crowes, I by no means thought to analyze additional. I suppose it was a time when the promise of the brand new provided by the sons of Seattle appeared far more interesting.
Listening to it now, simply as a slab of old skool boogie-blues rock, and divorced from the time it was launched and what was occurring round it, it is fairly badass. Stonking riffage, angle, musicianship and loads of charisma within the singer/frontman division. If I would have purchased this again then I am positive it could be an outdated favorite by this stage. Nonetheless, higher late than by no means.
Okay, there’s nothing authentic on present right here, The Faces had been making an analogous racket in 1970, but it surely’s trustworthy and the band method the fabric as in the event that they considered these well-worn rock tropes first. It does sail the seas of copycat territory in a number of locations – you will recognise a riff or two lifted from AC/DC, and Sizzling Head‘s vocal melody is as near Creedence’s Proud Mary as to make no distinction.
General although, an incredible hear, refreshing in its simplicity and purity of manufacturing, and from a time when rock’n’roll might nonetheless simply be dumb enjoyable with out anybody elevating an arch and disapproving eyebrow.
Invoice Griffin: One factor that profitable bands have is a few sense of continuity, one thing for an viewers to seize on to. That’s often the singer’s voice (even when there have been notable exceptions) so, whereas Starr’s means to sound like so many various different singers was spectacular, it is not one thing fascinating in a band attempting to make it by itself deserves.
That is not all his fault although, the songs additionally mimic the sound of different bands to the purpose that I by no means bought the sense that I knew what this band appeared like. Certainly, I felt like I used to be listening to a sampler report of beforehand unreleased songs from different extra well-known bands.
I significantly doubt these guys would have made it even with out the dangerous luck, arrests and tragedies.
Jacob Tannehill: Nice album. A “shoulda woulda coulda been” album. Now that I hearken to it once more, I really feel Rick Rubin began to get in a rut and between this and Black Crowes, and the manufacturing on the Danzig albums round this time, not that every one these albums had been dangerous. Every little thing began sounding very uncooked. I really feel they had been beginning to sound the identical? Great things although. I actually like this album, and it ought to have been big. Drained Wings was the comply with up single, to the title monitor, and it ought to have been successful too.
Wade Babineau: Superior album when it got here out, nonetheless unbelievable at this time. I consider my buy was based mostly on seeing a video for No one or Rockin; Is My Enterprise. To be trustworthy, I really feel that is not a bum monitor on this. Many a time if I used to be feeling down I would throw on I Want A Thrill/One thing Good or Drained Wings and decide myself proper again up. Disgrace they could not keep the momentum. Discovered the Gettin Fairly Good at Barely Getting By album a yr in the past. First rate, however does not maintain a candle to this.
Jonathan Novajosky: I discovered No one Mentioned It Was Straightforward to be extremely common. It is a kind of albums the place each track simply flies by with out you realising so, after which when it is over, you possibly can’t bear in mind a single factor you simply heard. A pair tracks had been okay, significantly I Want A Thrill / Somethin’ Good. However principally, I discovered it to be tremendous repetitive – listening to the identical hook being sung again and again. A good rock album, however not far more to me. 5.5/10
Rajesh Parekat: Got here throughout this album within the early 90s, the grunge period, and it had all of the components to fulfill a metallic head teenager then. However there was a plethora of bands, that too of nice class, like, say AIC, STP, Pearl Jam.n the likes and within the circulate, this band turned far too oblivious, I suppose. My Drained Wings was my private favorite. Thanks for bringing it again..
Michael Baryshnikov: Very common pop-rock band of 1991. Radio-friendly. Half-a-disk is good, even trying like AC/DC generally, however there was a hell lot of bands of this sort then. Can not deal with this album as “hidden treasure”, sorry.
Jay Turner: This band was topic to a number of tragedy and misfortune. The lead guitarist/singer bought sick and finally died. The remaining members tried to go on and really made a few extra albums but it surely wasn’t the identical. It was a really first rate debut album and an actual disgrace that they could not enhance and refine their sound.
Despite the fact that it wasn’t the very best debut album ever made, it undoubtedly has some shining moments. They had been capable of seize a uncooked, storage sound and will have been honed into killer band given extra alternatives to point out their stuff. Sadly their future died with their chief.
Mike Knoop: On first hear, I assumed the 4 Horsemen had been fairly by-product of bands that had been already fairly by-product (Nice White, Cinderella, Black Crowes, Poison, Sooner Pussycat, and so forth.). And, after all, there’s that strong basis constructed on AC/DC.They appear like a kind of bands assembled within the wake of the startlingly profitable Weapons N’ Roses, who modified the Sundown Strip nearly in a single day from teased blonde hair and day-glo colors to soiled denim and heroin. Immediately bands had been falling over themselves to point out they had been “actual rock ‘n’ roll.”
That does not imply it is not pleasant and it is a kind of albums that will get higher with every hear. The three songs with “rock” within the title are all good neck-snappin’ foot-stompers, as are 75 Once more and Lookin’ for Bother.
A staple of this style is “good ol’ boys doing dangerous issues” and Needed Man, Moonshine, and Sizzling Head all fill the invoice. I simply need to remind myself it is not Jack Russell or Bret Michaels singing them. Rick Rubin’s manufacturing is whip sensible and what the band lacks in originality, they make up for in means. Earthshaking revelation? No. Enjoyable method to spend fifty minutes? Certain.
Closing Rating: 6.71⁄10 (84 votes solid, with a complete rating of 564)
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