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Bolton, Michael - 1985 Everybodys Crazy

ARTIST: Bolton, Michael
ALBUM: Everybodys Crazy
SERIAL: BFC 39328-1 (lp), 466662 2 (cd)
YEAR: 1985
CD REISSUE: 2008, Rock Candy Records, CANDY033


LINEUP: Michael Bolton - vocals, guitars

Guitars: Bruce Kulick, Kevin Dukes, Paul Pesco * Bass - Dennis Feldman, Schulyer Deale * Keyboards, Piano, Synthesizers - Mark Mangold, Mark Radice, Jan Mullaney, Alan St John, Lloyd Landesman, Neil Kernon, Doug Katsaros, Randy Goodrum * Programming - Larry Fast * Saxophone - Mark Rivera

TRACK LISTING: 01 Save Our Love * 02 Everybody's Crazy * 03 Can't Turn It Off * 04 Call My Name * 05 Everytime * 06 Desperate Heart * 07 Start Breaking My Heart * 08 You Don't Want Me Bad Enough * 09 Don't Tell Me That It's Over



Despite the quality of 'Michael Bolton' the debut album from 1983, it was a commercial flop. It reached 100 on the Billboard Charts. Undeterred, Bolton forged ahead and went on to record what is regarded by many as the greatest pure AOR album ever. Keeping many of the same musicians who appeared on the debut, he also hired Neil Kernon to produce. A wise decision, as Kernon gave the music an extra edge, providing a beefier sound. Crucially, it was polished to perfection, and it is easy to see why it ranks as one of the most 'complete AOR' albums within the genre.

The Songs
From the opening bombast of 'Save Our Love' it is obvious Bolton had upped the heaviness. The riffs are dense and the drum sound up in the mix.The two year gap had seen a rapid sophistication in production techniques and this is audible immediately. We get first rate choruses, and that's true of every song. In a way it seems pointless to single out any particular song. They all measure up, with an added edge, and a sense of dramatics. Bolton's flair was for creating melodic twists and turns, that excite with every chord change. Bruce Kulick's guitar solo on Don't Tell It's Over' is textbook stuff and a fine example. It fits within the context of the music and the lyrics. Same goes for the synth work. Sweat inducing, they are on overload throughout. But the real star of course is Bolton. The power he displays can put a Steve Perry or Lou Gramm to shame. At one moment tender and brooding on 'Call My Name' the next pouring his guts out on 'You Don't Want Me Bad Enough'. The soulful aspect is even bought out on the massive harmonies of 'Everytime'. Ballad or rocker, Bolton brings the most out of his voice. Every song is an anthem in turn.

In Summary
Amazingly this album was another chart let-down. It is so superior to Foreigner's 'Agent Provocateur' that it's a crime it's not better known, since they were both 1985 releases. It wasn't until 1987's 'The Hunger' that Bolton began his platinum rise. But by 1989's 'Soul Provider' the AOR fire was fading, and 1991's 'Time, Love And Tenderness' was confirmation it was over. Since then Bolton has reached a level of derision here in the USA matched only by punsters like Barry Manilow or Kenny Rogers. He does not deserve it. The general public is unaware of this album and what Bolton was really about. This was AOR precision and he can take solace knowing that he is a legend in at least one genre. Absolutely essential.

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#1 | gdazegod on August 20 2003 09:00:00
YouTube Video:
#2 | sabace on March 19 2006 13:58:28
I love the lp but don't like the drum sound .
#3 | gdazegod on March 19 2006 18:58:23
The drums on the debut Blue Tears was the worst though.. Shock
#4 | dangerzone on March 20 2006 09:34:11
I don't think there is a drummer credited on this album. Surely not programmed?
#5 | gdazegod on March 20 2006 18:27:12
I understand the drums were programmed. That's what I've always known about this album.
#6 | rostoned on April 10 2008 20:20:34
the drums were definitely NOT programmed (expect 1 track, Desperate Heart, produced by Goodrum), they were played by Michael Braun (as Neil Kernon told me) or Chuck Burgi (as MB's ex manager Louis Levin told Derek Oliver for RC reissue) or both, I assume at this point! helpless
It's Kernon's production which gives the feel they were programmed, just check Neil's other productions (Aviator, Valentine, Streets, Kansas etc) and in many cases the drums will sound huge and not so human. Mystery solved! ciao. clap
#7 | gdazegod on May 28 2008 22:27:08
Finally got the vid up. Thanks to rostoned.
#8 | Jez on June 13 2008 08:43:39
This along with the magnificent debut are complete AOR perfection IMHO . Albums that i've had for over 20 years now and still enjoy as much as I did when I first heard them. 'Can't Turn I It Off' & 'Don't Tell Me That It's Over' are the highlights on this,any AOR/MR fan not liking these really does need the old head testing. Top power ballads in'Desperate Heart' and 'Call My Name' both utterly superb. Along with the debut, completely essential for the collection
#9 | reyno-roxx on July 20 2008 22:21:37
I seem to remember that this album first arrived into Shades Records in the same import shipment as the initial Japanese release of White Lion's 'Fight To Survive'. That was an awesome day in rock history!
#10 | jeffduran on July 21 2008 06:10:49
Brilliant AOR!
#11 | rostoned on August 10 2008 21:57:37
Amazingly and contrary to what's been said and written even on recent reissues american rock radios showed a bit of support for the single 'Everybody's Crazy': it had a 7 week run in the Mainstream Rock Billboard chart and peaked at #38. So even during the worst of times somebody cared for poor little Mickey...
#12 | mystichealer on April 08 2012 19:26:12
I actually recall the day this arrived in Shades, i was there and my friend of many many years dear ol' Kelv was shitting his pants in excitement.
#13 | gdazegod on April 08 2012 23:26:25
Bolton is here in Western Australia shortly, playing a gig with the W.A Symphony Orchestra.
#14 | jeffrey343 on April 10 2012 18:34:36
I somehow missed out on this one until reading about it here in 2004. I got the debut pretty much when it came out and played it a bunch throughout the end of high school and throughout college and later, so to me it rather than this one is his definitive AOR moment. This one is quite good, but I prefer the debut and "The Hunger".

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