Early success[ edit ] In the late s, Don Dokken was playing in a Los Angeles -based band called Airborn, and had the opportunity to reach a record deal in Germany. After seeing the band Xciter, and future bandmates George Lynch and Mick Brown , he knew that they would complete the band that would land the record deal. Although Lynch and Brown were not interested in joining forces with him when he first contacted them, he went ahead to Germany. During his time in Germany, Dokken befriended the German band Scorpions , and sang with them in rehearsals for their Blackout album while lead vocalist Klaus Meine was being treated for nodes on his vocal cords.
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Passive aggressive much? Dokken imploded in not with a bang but a whimper. Rather than remembering the live album they finished with Beast From the East , people recall the animosity and bitter attacks in the rock press. Don Dokken meanwhile was cooking up a hot new band. The only issue was the name. The ex-members, who owned a stake in the Dokken name, refused to let Don use it. His solo band was a killer.
Fresh out of Europe with a smash hit album under his belt, John Norum joined on guitar. Billy White from the thrash metal band Watchtower was the second guitar player, giving Dokken a double guitar lineup or three if you count Don himself.
Rounding out the band was veteran Accept bassist Peter Baltes, who played with Dokken in their earliest days. His solo album Up From the Ashes was a down-ratchet from Dokken, slightly, with an emphasis on melodic rock. It did however continue the core Dokken sound, with some biting and very Lynch-like guitar riffs. Hard rock, smooth vocals, and six-string acrobatics. Hit material.
A lot of Up From the Ashes fits into a nice little hard rock box, a little smoother around than edges than classic Dokken, but strong as ever. No real weak songs abide within. There are only a few that are head and shoulders standouts. Drony ballads are less impressive. The momentum is killed by starting side two with this slow Scorpions-wannabe.
Another issue is a slightly damp production, which makes the drums sound woefully underpowered. This is a shame since Mikkey Dee is such a drum demon. With Up From the Ashes, Don re-established himself. Nobody could accuse him of leaning on George Lynch.
Up from the Ashes