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.38 Special vs. Night Ranger


66 mustang
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I know what you are thinking, these two bands have NO relation to each other in any shape, form or fashion. Well, you'd be right but they are 2 of my favorite bands and the first 2 headliners I saw live. My first show was 38 Special with Honeymoon Suite opening and my 2nd concert was Night Ranger with the Outfield opening. Also the bands last 2 studio albums left me a little "wanting". let me first say 38 is my Fav band period. bands come and go in my top five but 38 is always #1. When I got DriveTrain after listening to a couple clips and reading that it would be more aggressive I had some high expectations. disapointed doesn't even explain what I felt and have felt ever since. I've tried to let it grow on me, and for a brief time it did. probably because the are my fav band and I really WANTED to like it. I found what ever i could latch onto and like and really focused on it. (wrote a review during this period also) Soon after though reality hit me and it hit me hard, the album is so far under their standard. One really good, signature sounding song on it. The Donnie Van Zant tune HIDING FROM YOURSELF is as close to old school .38 Special as they get with their new songs on this cd. Now they cover themselves twice on this album too and do a bad job on each. the first song they re-recorded "THE SQUEEZE" was much better in it's original form. It was the first single the band released after Don re-united with the band. They sold the single at concerts on cassette and it had a great b-side to it, "I FALL BACK" follows in line with a typical Don Barnes single from the 80's, ala If I'd Been The One or Hold On Loosely. The Squeeze, the single features Don and Donnie sharing vocals like on Wild Eyed Southern Boys or Rough Housin'. On the DriveTrain cd they ruin the song with the sound they used. The 2nd song they re-recorded was TROOPER WITH AN ATTITUDE - the new version lacks ATTITUDE. The original (from the movie Super Troopers) was just a great out rocker that could follow Teacher Teacher or Back To Paradise as their movie songs.

 

NR's Hole In The Sun also left me a bit cool but it does have a few signature sounding Jack Blades solo type tunes on it and I'm a big Jack Blades fan in all he has done, so the songs that sounded like they could have been on the Blades solo cd I accepted easier that most. and even a couple signature Nirgt Ranger sounding songs. One song sounded like it could have been a follow up to Sister Christian.

 

So I guess I have to cast my vote for the Night Ranger disc although I'm not thrilled with it either, i do like it better.

 

btw, I haven't figured out how to do a poll on the new board yet or I would have added that option. any mod that would want to add it as a poll please feel free to do so.

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I heard Hole in the Sun and didn't love it but I've never heard

Drivetrain and the only 38 Special disc I have is a Greatest hits or Best of of some kind. So if I had to cast a vote I'd for Night Ranger on this one. I did see NR in concert and they were great.

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Mr Mustang, you should do a few more of these , both really great bands.

 

I personally prefer Hole in The Sun, Drivetrain was quite a disappointment to me, one or two tracks are good but generally not of 38 Special standard.

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I would go with 'Hole In The Sun' overall although I thought 'Drivetrain' had some good moments on it aswell. Both these albums aren't the bands best albums by a long way ,in fact probably their worst to be honest, but both have some redeeming songs, so aren't complete disasters for me.

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  • 1 year later...

Let`s hope the new Night Ranger album is worth waiting for, the single will probably grow on me as initially I found it a little corny but it sounds less so on further listens, great band though.

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never heard of 'Drivetrain' before but 'Hole In The Sun' is quite low IMHO, maybe their worst, not sure, i forgot how's 'Seven' sound, but as far as I remember, 'HITS' has couple of great songs. Though not a totally horrible album, this is a typical disc that i will spin probably once in 2-3 years :D

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