Woke Up With a Monster(1994)

1.My Gang 2.Woke Up With a Monster 3.You're All I Wanna Do 4.Never Run Out of Love 5.Didn't Know I Had It 6.Rid the Pony 7.Girlfriends 8.Let Her Go 9.Tell Me Everything 10.Cry Baby 11.Love Me For a Minute


It had been almost 4 years since the last new Cheap Trick release and many people were beginning to wonder what was going on. Their last release, Busted, had mild success but was unable to replicate its predecessor, Lap of Luxury, which was probably the main intention when they recorded that record. So Cheap Trick was now not only with (yet) another producer, but with a completely different record label. Ted Templeman, mostly known for his work with Van Halen, was decided upon to be a good fit for the band and, for awhile, rumor was out that this record was going to sound "a lot like their first album".

It doesn't come close. They do manage a few brilliant cuts on this album, yet they're so buried down on the song list that they're easy to overlook. Girlfriends, Let Her Go and Tell Me Everything show everyone that the guys are capable of recapturing the magic of their early days. The sad thing is that the rest of the album doesn't measure up as good as these three.

In fact, there are several songs that sound an awful lot like their last two albums. They come across as catchy, kitchy and radio friendly. You're All I Want To Do, Never Run Out of Love and Didn't Know I Had It all could have been radio hits, but the diehard fan probably won't revere them as anything particularly memorable.

Then we have the "Completely Horrid" department. This album features some of the worst songs the band has ever produced. They try to be bluesy/sleazy with Cry Baby and Ride the Pony. They just come off as embarrassing. Then, for whatever reason, the annoying title track was chosen as the single for the album. It barely cracked the top 200 for one week. It proves that Robin Zander should sing, not scream.

The album was a flop. Of course, they blamed their record company. Who wouldn't?

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