CD Hang Cool Teddy Bear (CD 6460463),
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Hang Cool Teddy Bear
1. Peace on Earth
2. Living on the Outside
3. Los Angeloser
4. If I Can't Have You - (featuring Kara DioGuardi)
5. Love Is Not Real/Next Time You Stab Me in the Back
6. Like a Rose
7. Did You Ever Love Somebody
8. Song of Madness
9. Running Away from Me
10. Let's Be in Love
11. If It Rains
12. Elvis in Vegas
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 17760
Dan Chase; Doug McKean
Personnel: James Michael, Justin Hawkins, Randy Flowers, Rick Brantley (vocals, guitar); CC Coletti, Kasim Sulton, Patti Russo (vocals); Paul Crook , Rob Cavallo, Tim Pierce (guitar); Jamie Muhoberac (keyboards); John Miceli (drums); Dan Chase (programming).
Audio Mixer: Chris Lord-Alge.
Recording information: Bungalow Castle, London, UK; Capitol Studios; Emblem Studios; Lightning Sound Studio.
Photographer: Martin Husler.
Hang Cool Teddy Bear may not be an explicit sequel to Bat Out of Hell -- not in its title or in its composition, with Meat Loaf once again parting ways with Jim Steinman, the architect of the Bat songs -- but it sure has enough bombast to trick anybody into thinking it's the fourth volume of Bat. It's not, of course: unlike those three career-defining records, Hang Cool Teddy Bear boasts an actual narrative -- a hazy, unformed tale of a wounded soldier -- instead of merely being conceptual, a difference that should give the album shape, particularly when married with Rob Cavallo's crisp, bright production. Cavallo corrects all the errors of the heavy-handed metallic Bat Out of Hell III -- its slick processed grind playing like an unfortunate artifact from the moussed and teased '80 Sunset Strip -- but the album still lacks the songs of Steinman. Instead, many other writers craft tributes to that over-the-top sound -- notably, Justin Hawkins, who made his bones with the parodic rock of the Darkness, American Idol judge Kara DioGuardi, Bon Jovi & Desmond Child -- winding up with fist-pumping, Springsteen arena-anthems and guitar-laden rockers. Meat Loaf also gets assistance in the studio by a true motley crew -- Steve Vai and Brian May double-team on guitar, Jack Black sings backing vocals, and House's Hugh Laurie pounds the piano. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Billboard (p.36) - "[O]ld-school rap nods and blunt lyricism add to the set's allure..."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.92) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[B]y trying something a little different, he's mustered a late-career triumph....And, of course, Meat sings every song as a matter of life and death..."
Uncut (magazine) (p.112) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[A]nother collection of gale-force rock opera, inflated by bellicose orchestral production and augmented by an array of guest stars."
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Roadrunner Records 17760
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