Hanoi Rocks

Ever waited years to see a band you have been into for much of your music-loving life only to be let down and heartbroken? For me, it was Hanoi Rocks in early 2005 at the old Rios in Bradford. Things started off well, but the show was soon blighted by vocalist Michael Monroe’s seemingly stroppy mood, as he stormed off stage for about five minutes and laced almost every lyric with some expletive or other. Not fun at all.

Fortunately, I haven’t completely lost interest and, whilst Hanoi’s third reunion album is not a patch on the classic ‘Two Steps From The Move’ (very few albums are!), it goes some way to erasing the sour memories of that Rios gig.

Some things that have not changed; Monroe doesn’t look to have aged, Andy McCoy still looks every inch the psychedelic gypsy guitarslinger and their partnership remains one of rock n’ roll’s finest, as evidenced by the excellent title track. ‘This One’s For Rock N’ Roll’, with its fantastically boneheaded chorus, is a corny delight, whilst Monroe dusts off his sax for the pop-flavoured ‘Worth Your Weight In Gold’. There are also a few nods to Hanoi’s past; the funky ‘Power Of Persuasion’, for example, recalls both ‘Village Girl’ and ‘Lick Summer Love’.

‘Street Poetry’ isn’t without filler, prime suspects being the closing instrumental ‘Fumblefoot & Busy Bee’ and the rather lazy ‘Powertrip’. Overall, though, it’s enough to convince me to give the Hanoi Rocks live experience another chance.

Ross Halewood