Hang Cool Teddy Bear
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Hang Cool Teddy Bear
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'Hang Cool Teddy Bear' thematically and sonically fits in perfectly with the 'Bat Out Of Hell' series. From the opening notes of the album's first track 'Peace On Earth' to the closing tracks of the Jon Bon Jovi co-written
track 'Elvis in Vegas,' 'Hang Cool Teddy Bear' embodies everything Meat Loaf is: Ballsy, Theatrical, Epic and Bombastic!
The album is available in two physical configurations - a standard CD as well as a deluxe digipak with special
20 page booklet and a second disc featuring 9 new live versions of Meat Loaf classics.
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Top Customer Reviews
Hang Cool Teddy Bear takes you back to an album full of story and purpose. Brilliantly intertwining story, with vocal and instrumentation. You don't know what to listen to first, demanding a replay to see the layers of this album.
Vocally ~ Meat Loaf's organic sound is absolute. He uses his vocal strengths to draw you in to the story. To give an impressive vocal in each song, says a ton about the maturity and experience that Meat Loaf brings in Hang Cool Teddy Bear. Songs such as "If I Can't Have You" and "Did You Ever Love Somebody" will leave goosebumps on your arms. I challenge you to listen to these vocals and see what Meat is really giving you in these two pieces.
Story ~ The story is conceptual and without giving away my interpretation, after Los Angeloser the songs talk back to one another. You will need to purchase this album to figure out the mystery yourself. I'm not giving it away for FREE!
Instrumentation ~ John Micelli on drums absolutely stellar, love the hardness in "Song of Madness" and his patience with "Did You Ever Love Somebody" is simply exquisite which allows for the climax of that song to happen. And if guitars are your preference, Hang Cool Teddy Bear is loaded up. Highlighting: "Peace On Earth" and "Song Of Madness".
A note for the casual Meat Loaf fan: you may note previous Meat works would include bombastic operatic sound with lifelong answers to common problems. This album is not meant to replace those treasures or extend to a story from those treasures. This album is a page turner for a legendary performer.
Hang Cool Teddy Bear has a worth far more than the valued price on this very website. It's up to you to find the treasure yourself!!!! I highly recommend Hang Cool Teddy Bear for the open minded Rock and Roll appreciative fan.
Thanks for listening,
The second disc is pretty sick as well. The only song I didn't really dig was "Anything for Love." Just didn't like the slowed down tempo of it. But that is this humble audiophile being a little petty maybe. Other than that, get the lighter ready!!
The idea of the album is the story of a soldier how gets seriously wounded in the desert and as he's laying there bleeding instead of his life passing him by, visions of his possible future come to him instead. Interesting idea, but not really coherent through the recording and you dont need to know that in order to listen to the songs although it does play into the first song, Peace On Earth. 'Peace on Earth' starts with thunderous percussion and discordant string sounds imitating the sounds of battle and explosions. Then it kicks into straight ahead rock and roll as the singer contemplates his life and how he just wants to be home more then anything else in the world.
The first 5 songs, Peace On Earth, Living On The Outside, Los Angeloser, If I Can't Have You and Love Is Not Real/Next Time You Stab Me In The Back are all uptempo rockers and gives hopes for a solid and highly enjoyable record. Each of these songs grow on you with each listen and the hooks and choruses are pure sing along material and Meat really sounds in good voice throughout.
Then comes song 6, Like A Rose, and the recording kind of hiccups for me. As someone else pointed out in another review, the thing that always set Meat's songs apart is that they were filled with lyrical images that painted pictures in our heads. In 'Like A Rose' those lyrical metaphors are bypassed by the 'F-bomb' being dropped in the chorus. That just dragged me out of the song. I'm not a purist by any stretch of the imagination, but thats not what Meat Loaf is to me.
The next song, Song Of Madness, is back the harder edge sound with Steve Vai on guitar. It's a song sounds like it's from Bat Out Of Hell 3, with that hard, heavy guitar sound. It's a song to get lost in the intense emotions on display from both Meat and the music.
Then 'Did you Ever Love Somebody' starts out as a nice easy ballad that we're used to hearing from Meat and the hiccup of 'Like A Rose' starts to fade from memory.
Song 9 'California Isnt Big Enough' then kicks in with a catchy guitar strumming to start your feet tapping. Then it happens again. The chorus starts with the lyrics "I can barely fit my d@ck in my pants". It's not as vulgar as 'Like A Rose', but it's a line that almost shouted at top volume which drags me out of this song. A shame, because aside from that line, I like the tune. Again, its not what Meat Loaf means to me personally.
'Running Away From Me' is a shorter song with a bouncy feel to it that tries to get things back on course and succeeds to a degree. I wouldnt call anything that Meat Loaf does as 'filler' as he puts everything he can into any song he songs, but this is probably the closest this album has to filler.
'Lets Be In Love' brings Meat's long time female vocal collaborator, Patti Russo, front and center. Meat and Patty have been doing this since BOOH 2 and they still play off of each as well as they did then, even if the song seems a little 'flat'.
'If It Rains' is a song of defiance to me, "Cause if it rains, it rains. We'll be in the street lookin thunder in the face. I wont change." It's not bad and a definite sing along type of song. Easy to hear and understand the lyrics.
Finally, "Elvis in Vegas" closes out the album. Co-written by Bon Jovi, you can hear the Bon Jovi influence in the song in the melody and how the song builds and builds. A good ender to the new stuff.
It's not bad overall, but those few instances I pointed out, pulled me out of the recording a bit and it takes me a while to get back into the flow then. It's something different and definitely harder then much of what we've heard from Meat before and I do find that overall it's growing on me with each listen. Who knows how time will treat it? It feels like a more cohesive and complete recording then BOOH 3 was a few years back.
On an unrelated note, I was pleased to see that the live recording of '2 Out Of 3 Aint Bad' on the 2nd cd of the Special Edition was recorded at the concert in Youngstown, Ohio in December 2008 which I attended so that was a nice personal bonus for me.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Meat Loaf + Rob Cavallo = awesome.
Not to mention a notably amazing vocal performance.. possibly his best imo.Read more