Originally Published: November 1997

A Fistful of Alice

Before there was Marilyn Manson, before G 'n' R, before The Cramps, before Ozzie, before KISS, there was Alice Cooper. Before there was "Beth" there was "Only Women Bleed," before there was "Welcome to the Jungle" there was "Lost in America" ("...I need a girlfriend with a gun and a job..."), and before there was "Beautiful People" there was "Elected." Before there was any other skinny long-haired guy in makeup and tight pants singing about teenage testosterone, raising hell, Ouija boards, cutting class, and the darker, creepier, morose side of life, there was Alice Cooper. And now, once again, he proves what it is all about.

A Fistful of Alice will make you want to ask your friend's older brother to give you a ride in his 1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme to the stomp at the Eagles' Lodge on North Main Street so you can show off your new light-blue J.C. Penney shirt and relive all of your Alice memories again. Everything that defines Alice Cooper is here: "School's Out," "Eighteen," "Poison," "Welcome To My Nightmare," "Billion Dollar Babies," "I Never Cry," and the classics mentionedabove.

Recorded in June 1996 in front of 200 people at Hagar's Cabo Wabo Cantina in Mexico (yeah, I know, I know) Cooper's voice is strong, gravelly, emotional, and on-key. All of the songs are tight, the mix is better than I have heard on any other live recording, and the sound quality is amazing. Guest musicians abound including Slash, Rob Zombie, and, of course, Sammy Hagar. I don't care what you ever heard about Alice Cooper, the incident with Dr. Hook or otherwise, this CD is everything rock 'n' roll is supposed to be.

In a nutshell: Unless you were one of those 200 people in Mexico, you need this CD.