It’s Good Enough: Let’s Make a Van Hagar Album!
If you’ve got red blood pumping through your veins, it’s likely that you enjoy the work of Van Halen. However, if Applebee’s is your favorite restaurant, if you have a different REO Speedwagon tour shirt for each day of the week, or if you have Budweiser beer signs hung in your “man cave”, you may find yourself gravitating more towards the Sammy Hagar portion of the band’s career.
Essentially the Guy Fieri of hard rock, Sammy Hagar left a sour taste in many a Van Halen fan’s mouth when he replaced David Lee Roth in 1985: heavy tunes such as “Atomic Punk” were replaced with ballads like “How Will I Know (When It’s Love)?” Those Van Halen fans weren’t from St. Louis, however, because we LOVE the Red Rocker and his insatiable thirst for fun and drunken good times. We realize that yes, the best riffs were played early on, but when there’s “Mas Tequila” to be enjoyed, you don’t necessarily need good hard rock riffs to have fun. So I’ve set out to gather the best Van Hagar songs that should satisfy not only St. Louis natives but DLR-era Van Halen fans all around the world. CABO WABO, let’s do this!!!
1. “Good Enough” from 5150. You may be thinking to yourself, “what’s the best way to start an album, nay, ANY album?” The same way I start every morning after getting out of bed, by exclaiming to the world HELOOOO BAAAAAAABY! The rest of the song is probably good, though I’m not quite sure because I usually press the Next button after Sammy’s bombastic intro. (Fun fact about 5150: Toilet ov Hell commenter/genius Max thinks it’s rill gud.)
2. “Poundcake” from For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. You may be thinking to yourself, “what’s the second best way to start an album, nay, ANY album?” By drilling a guitar! Unfortunately for us the album’s already begun, so this song will have to start after that. I really do enjoy “Poundcake”, with its reverb-drenched power chords that serve as a driving force to some lyrics that MIGHT be a thinly veiled metaphor for… could it be… sexual intercourse?!?! ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) (Fun fact about For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge: the first letter of each word comes together to form the word “fuck”.)
3. “Get Up” from 5150 (If you haven’t noticed by now, I’m avoiding Van Hagar ballads because you came here to ROCK!). This song just rips and shreds, PERIOD, as even a die-hard DLR fan should be able to admit. There’s a special treat contained within if you’re a fan of synth-drums*, the entire song has drums in it; and I guess with 5150 Van Halen wanted to announce to the world that they’re a band of the times and will hop on-board any bandwagon.
4. “Don’t Tell Me (What Love Can Do)” from Balance. The research involved in finding great songs off Balance led me to some of the deepest recesses of the web; but first let’s talk about George Lynch for a moment. A man of impeccable musical taste (aside from all that deathcore) and everyone’s best friend in the Toilet, he also won of Riff ov the Week, 1995 Edition, with his pick “Don’t Tell Me (What Love Can Do)”. Yes, he won that particular contest, just as Opeth broke up after Watershed and LOST only lasted five seasons.
5. “Source of Infection” from OU812. Guise I want you to know that I tried VERY hard to find a good song off that album, and this one happened to be the least worst. Oh, the things I do for you… This song is decent, so we shall include it on the album. (Fun fact about OU812: the album title, when said aloud, sounds like the following statement: “Oh, you ate one too”. Lolz.)
6. “Aftershock” from Balance. Have you heard this song? Probably not, so let me start by listing a few attributes of “Aftershock”:
☑ Siqq riffs
☑ Rocket solos
☑ Trill hooks
What did you think of “Aftershock”? Tell us your opinion in the comments section plz.
“Aftershock” is my favorite Van Halen song of all time, in fact I always play “Aftershock” on a jukebox when I’m at a bar with a jukebox. (Fun fact about Balance: this 1995 album from Van Halen contains the best song of their career, “Aftershock.”)
7. “Right Now” from For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. I know what I said earlier about not including ballads, but I gave myself this impossible task so I have to see it through to the end! And while previewing tracks to include on this list, my 50 year old co-worker started singing along, so you know it’s good. Crack open a Crystal Clear Pepsi and jam this #rambobangin’ tune…
8. The guitar solo on “Feelin'” from Balance. Disclaimer: this is a garbage song enjoyed only by garbage people. Digging through this heaping pile of shit, the listener will find a terrific bridge/guitar solo combo that lasts about 70 seconds, and but then it’s right back to the shit. I won’t embed the song here because I love you; but DO click here to listen to the good part that is making it onto our album. I’ll wait for you here — and make sure you don’t go past the 4:10 mark.
9. “5150” from 5150. Dammit Van Halen, when you want write a great rock song you knock it out of the fucking park! So why do it so infrequently? It’s songs like these that make stinkers like “Summer Nights” anger up the blood. Enough talk, please stab and enjoy:
How did I do? What changes would you make? Why can’t this be love?
*Are synth-drums a thing? Let’s hope not.