Artist:  Cherry St
   Title: Monroe & X Rated
   Label: Perris Records

I’d never heard of Cherry St. until I was sent this double album to review. I thought my knowledge of glam bands from the 80’s and 90’s was quite extensive, being one of those rock chicks that lived and breathed sleazy metal back in the day, but for some reason Cherry St. past me by. 

Background - Cherry St. were formed in 1989 and played Hollywood’s Sunset Strip around the same time as LA Guns, Warrant and London. They released a 3 track demo which sold a staggering 8000 copies and had publicity appearances on MTV ‘Pay to Play’ along with members of Guns N Roses and Warrant. In 1993 the band released ‘Squeeze it Dry’ which was produced by Pat Regan (KISS, Deep Purple) Erik Turner (Warrant) and the Tommy Thayer (Black n Blue, KISS). Following this and the MTV exposure, they toured 29 US states sharing the stage with Vince Neil, Foreigner and Warrant to name but a few.  

This double CD is a reissue of two of the bands biggest albums. The first, ‘Monroe’, was originally a mini album, it now includes 3 bonus tracks from their sell out Sunset Strip demo. There’s several lead singers throughout this album giving the listener a smorgasbord of treats. Marq Torien of Bulletboys fame, kicks off first, belting out his distinctive tones that just make you transport straight back to 1989. His voice wavers and stretches your ear drums and its this that makes the first two songs give you that familiar feeling that you have heard the songs before but some how it’s all refreshingly likeable and new. 

‘Joker Wild’ stood out for me on this collection. Sung by Kevin Steel of Roxx Gang, it oozes sleaze and had me hooked, singing along to the chorus and slapping my leg in time with the beat. It somehow reminded me a lot of Nasty Suicides band ‘Cheap and Nasty’. Steel sings the next track ‘Bite the Bullet’ which is equally as thigh slapping. 

‘Tuff’ singer Stevie Rachelle sings ‘The War is Over’ while Shannon Strobel and Billy Coane complete the albums remaining tunes. This is a good collection of great rock songs and the line up on ‘Monroe’ reads like a who’s who of glam metal. 

The second CD, “X-Rated” reminded me more of AC/DC and Buckcherry than pure 80’s glam. It has more of the 3 chord AC/DC type riffs than Monroe. “X-Rated” features Wes Kimball as the vocal talent on this album. Jamie Scott on bass, who later joined Tyketto, Taz on guitar (who most recently was involved in the production of the film, Zombieland), Kelly Thomas on drums and Tom Mathers on guitar who carries on the “Perris” label and started the ROCKNATION TV show. 

I loved the song “Roll the Bones” on this album and the lyric “loose lips sinks ships” made me smile, but “Whiskey” for me, was the catchiest of all the songs. 

This double CD was full of little gems, its not over produced on the singing or on the guitar riffs, therefore it still has that raw feeling that you only get when you first put a new first album CD or record on the turntable. Its refreshing to listen to something like this, rather than the highly polished and over shiny albums that are produced today. Since listening to these two CD’s I’ve never had them off my iPod and they have fast become a brand new “old school” favourite.

Review by special guest reviewer: Shen Holmes

Tracklisting:

1. Dogtown
2. One More Tonight
3. Break Me
4. Jokers Wild
5. Bite The Bullet
6. The War Is Over
7. Comes Around Goes Around (Bonus Track)
8. Soft & Slow (Bonus Track

 

Tracklisting:

1. Good In A Bad Way
2. Luv Junkie
3. Cloud 9
4. Roll The Bones
5. Red Devil
6. You've Got The Bomb
7. King Of The Mountain
8. Times You
9. Whiskey

                  

 

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