Category Archives: White Lion

WHITE LION – Big Game

White Lion – Big Game (1989, Atlantic Records)

1. “Goin’ Home Tonight” … 4:57
2. “Dirty Woman” … 3:27
3. “Little Fighter” … 4:23
4. “Broken Home” … 4:59
5. “Baby Be Mine” … 4:10
6. “Living on the Edge” … 5:02
7. “Let’s Get Crazy” … 4:52
8. “Don’t Say It’s Over” … 4:04
9. “If My Mind is Evil” … 4:56
10. “Radar Love” … 5:59
11. “Cry for Freedom” … 6:09

Band:
Mike Trap – Vocals
Vito Bratta – Guitar
James Lomenzo – Bass
Greg D’Angelo – Drums

Producer: Michael Wagener

I picked this one up used for $5.99 at FYE shortly after getting Pride. I wasn’t looking for any White Lion CDs but came across and figured I might as well get it while I was in the mood for the band. Also, it was apparently owned by “Dan” as his name is written on the album insert. Well, thanks for getting rid of your copy, Dan!

Pride is the band’s most successful album but I’m leaning towards Big Game being the better release. From the Van Halen idolizing on “Let’s Get Crazy” (where in addition to Vito imitating Eddie we get an opening squeal from Mike worthy of Diamond Dave) to the pure heavy metal anger (THAT’S RIGHT I SAID IT) of “If My Mind Is Evil” to songs that sound a bit more like Pride in “Little Fighter” and “Cry For Freedom” there’s not a whole lot filler here, if at all. My only gripe as I have stated elsewhere would really be “Radar Love”. It’s not horrible but I’m just not a fan of the song, Golden Earring or White Lion version.

While “Broken Home”, “Little Fighter” and “Cry For Freedom” deal with serious issues the band still finds time to get in on typical hair metal bravado with “Dirty Woman”. Fun melodic rockers, hair metal, heavy metal, a handful of ballads… How can you go wrong with this album?

I have to commend the band and returning producing Michael Wagener for no following the formula set on Pride. Sure, it’s not a huge departure but there’s enough curve balls here to keep things interesting and it’s a brave choice to start the album of with “Goin’ Home Tonight” which is a somewhat sappy melodic rocker but Mike Tramp’s vocals really put the song over. It’s a good song but an odd choice to open the album, I think. His emotional vocal style also shines on “Broken Home”, a song that deals with divorce.

Although there aren’t as many straight rockers as Pride has, this is probably the best starting point for those curious about the band.

Highlights: “Goin’ Home Tonight”, “Little Fighter”, “Broken Home”, “Let’s Get Crazy”, “If My Mind Is Evil”, “Cry For Freedom”

www.returnofthepride.com
www.myspace.com/returnofthepride

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WHITE LION – Pride

White Lion – Pride (1987, Atlantic Records)

1. “Hungry” – 3:55
2. “Lonely Nights” – 4:11
3. “Don’t Give Up” – 3:15
4. “Sweet Little Loving” – 4:02
5. “Lady Of The Valley” – 6:35
6. “Wait” – 4:00
7. “All You Need is Rock ‘N’ Roll” – 5:14
8. “Tell Me” – 4:28
9. “All Join Our Hands” – 4:11
10. “When the Children Cry” – 4:18

Band:
Mike Trap – Vocals
Vito Bratta – Guitar
James Lomenzo – Bass
Greg D’Angelo – Drums

Produced: Michael Wagener

I’ve owned White Lion’s greatest hits collection The Best of White Lion for over 10 years now and I was a big fan of it. I played it constantly. So why didn’t I ever bother to dig deeper? I’m not sure but once I saw this album at Barnes & Noble for only $5.99, I figured why the heck not?

Pride is regarded as the band’s best release and it’s no wonder with rockers like “Hungry”, “Lonely Nights”, “Wait”, “Lady of the Valley” (the band’s attempt at doing something epic and majestic), “Tell Me” and the band’s biggest hit “When the Children Cry”, which went to #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles charts and helped propel this album to double platinum.

Visually, White Lion fits in with the rest of the pop metal bands of the day. The clothes, the pretty boy lead singer in Mike Tramp (who kind of reminds me of pro wrestler “Flyin'” Brian Pillman), guitar hero in Vito Bratta (particularly showing some fire here), etc. Where they differ though is through their lyrics which are a bit more heartfelt at times and have tackled serious social issues throughout their career. A song like “Don’t Give Up” is a perfect example of the positivity coming from this band. Most bands at this time were only positive that they wanted have sex and to party.

This is really a gem from this time period and as much as some bands are remembered, it seems like White Lion is one band that gets overlooked by hair metal enthusiasts these days. The only bad thing about this release is that I’m already way too familiar with six of these ten songs — they all were on the greatest hits release! I was really impressed by “Lonely Nights” though. I think it may actually be my favorite song on the album but “Sweet Little Loving” is pure filler.

Highlights: “Hungry”, “Lonely Nights”, “Lady of the Valley”, “Wait”, “Tell Me”, “When the Children Cry”

www.returnofthepride.com
www.myspace.com/returnofthepride

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WHITE LION – The Best of White Lion

White Lion – The Best of White Lion (1992, Atlantic Records)

Track Listing:
1. “Wait” … 4:04
2. “Radar Love” … 5:58
3. “Broken Heart” … 4:10
4. “Hungry” … 3:56
5. “Little Fighter” … 4:24
6. “Lights And Thunder” … 8:09
7. “All You Need is Rock ‘N’ Roll” [Live] … 5:44
8. “When the Children Cry” … 4:24
9. “Love Don’t Come Easy” … 4:11
10. “Cry for Freedom” … 6:11
11. “Lady of the Valley” [Live] … 7:41
12. “Tell Me” … 4:30
13. “Farewell to You” … 4:21

Band:
Mike Tramp – Vocals
Vito Bratta – Guitars
James Lomenzo – Bass
Greg D’Angelo – Drums

Produced by: Michael Wagener (Tracks 1, 2, 4-8, 10-12), Richie Vito (Tracks 3, 9, 13)

My one and only White Lion album, and it was an early addition to my CD collection. I was inspired to pick it up because of “When the Children Cry”, which a friend of mine had turned me onto. Obviously, being a ‘best of’, you can’t really go wrong, especially since this was my first introduction to the band.

I remember this album very well as I would usually come home from school and fall asleep while listening to it every afternoon (as I did with Guns N’ Roses and Poison).

“Radar Love” is the worst song of the bunch, I don’t like this soft cover and I don’t like Golden Earring’s original either!

This was the final release from White Lion until 1999, when another hits compilation was released (on Cleopatra Records and this time featuring re-recordings of White Lion songs by Mike Tramp and an all-new band) . Mike Tramp continues to tour and record under the White Lion name, releasing Returning of the Pride in 2008. It was the first original studio album since 1991’s Mane Attraction.

Highlights: Seeing as how this is a ‘best of’, I think most of the songs are more than worthy… “Wait”, “Broken”, “Hungry”, “Little Fighter”, “Lights and Thunder”, “When the Children Cry”, “Love Don’t Come Easy”, “Cry for Freedom”, “Tell Me”, “Farewell to You”

www.trampswhitelion.com
www.myspace.com/returnofthepride

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