SAMMY AND THE WABOS - LIVIN’ IT UP - RHINO
Is this the new Jimmy Buffet album? It couldn’t be because.. this is a new album from a post-Van Halen (again) Sammy Hagar. Now he might mention the phrases 'red rocker' and 'heavy metal' on the first track, Sam I Am, but a much better indicator of this album’s tone and mood are the photograph of a bare-footed Sammy sitting on a beach with his guitar. This is not exactly heavy metal, folks.
Sammy And The Wabos is essentially long hand for the relaxed and smooth side of the man. Lacking any real hard rockers, the album takes a sip of soft rock, another of blues, yet another of bluegrass and even takes a shot of barroom boogie. Topics discussed range from women to bars to drinks and to the beach or likely all those together. The lines might be hackneyed at best, “when we party, we partayyyyyyy”, but Hagar is as confident leaning at the bar as he is with his tunes. A couple of covers aside, the best songs here are probably the aforementioned Sam I Am and Mexico. The album is in cruise control for what it does, which is fine if one is into country music, but never mind anything in this review should one be a hard rock fan. - Ali “The Metallian”
SAMMY HAGAR AND THE WABOS - LIVIN' IT UP! LIVE IN ST. LOUIS - IMAGE ENTERTAINMENT
Sammy Hagar plus his band The Wabos are accompanied, for some songs, by Van Halen bassist Michael Anthony for this, almost, two-hour party and show performed outdoors. Songs like I Can't Drive 55 and Van Halen era Finish What You Started and Right Here, Right Now are included on a stage overflowing with women, booze and confetti. Much like the heady days of the '80s the aim and effort is to create a party atmosphere and the self proclaimed RedRocker mostly succeeds in achieving that. Bonus material features interviews, 'making of' footage, various video tours and video clips for Sam I Am and Tropic Of Capricorn. - Anna Tergel