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As pointless as a broken pencil. - 25%

hells_unicorn, May 23rd, 2009

There is absolutely no escaping it, no matter how hard you try, no matter what measure you take. If you’ve been a household name for several years and have had the support of the mainstream at one point or another, you will have a pointless song sampler released under your band’s name with all of the MTV essentials to go with it. To be fair, Dokken has not had the worst collection of compilations put out in their name, some of which have consisted of actual rarities or live versions of songs that contribute to the collection of a steady fan. But this is the same garbage that all were subjected to when Alice In Chains had their “Greatest Hits” put out with a boxer on the cover getting his face pummeled, as if the concept of a punch line were to be taken literally.

We kick this sorry excuse for a CD off with “Alone Again”, which immediately points to something being wrong. You never put a power ballad at the beginning of a compilation if you want to establish some sort of flow between songs. Once it’s over we get a half-ballad in “Dream Warriors”, so already we’ve got two incredibly slower songs back to back that are meant to be a rest stop before getting back to rocking, if you’ve experienced any of Dokken’s studio albums in their entirety. What ensues afterward is a predictable collection of the band’s mid-tempo rock songs, in the most awkward of orderings possible, and even more ballads to keep the slowness of pacing up.

There are literally no fast songs on here to speak of, or even upper mid tempo songs for that matter. Everything is cut from the songs in Dokken’s career that meet up to that “Rock You Like A Hurrican”, “No One Like You”, “Ain’t Talkin Bout Love”, with a little bit of “Girls, Girls, Girls” styled songs meant for those who only want fanfare and not any sort of depth or variety. We don’t get a radically fast and virtuosic killer in “Tooth And Nail”, or a fast crusher in “Lightning Strikes Again” or “Turn On The Action”. Even the most epic sounding of the band’s half-ballad rockers “Into The Fire”, a song that I’d qualify as obligatory on any compilation, is missing. I guess that one has just one too many different riffs or contrasting parts to be worthy of being considered a hit, regardless of how well known it was.

In no way is this meant to imply that the songs on here are bad, most of these songs are favorites of mine whenever I’m on long commutes and I want a melody to sing along with, but this sort of compilation would make me use the skip button so many times that I’d probably have an accident trying to avoid hearing all the similar songs one after another. This is not recommended to anyone, not casual Dokken fans who want the obligatory selections or even core Dokken fans that have no life outside of George Lynch’s riffs. There are more important things for you to waste your money on, like putting your favorite stripper through college.