Dokken's Riff-rockin' Report From The Sun Page 2
by Martin Popoff
Obviously, Reb being in the band is the main difference with Live From The Sun versus Beast From The East. "Right. Ten years has passed, and of course Reb is in the band and George isn't. And that's a whole different ball game, a different style. But basically Beast From The East was recorded in Japan and the vibe is much different over there; the audience has a different energy. One of the main reasons I think we cut the new album was that I wanted to show the fans that we have, that the band hasn't waned in our energy. If you look at a lot of bands from the '80s, people are saying, 'does the band still have what they had?' They get older and they just go out there. What is their energy like? What are they like live now? Personally I've gone and seen bands from that era and a lot of them don't have what they had. They're going through the motions and not really sure why they're out there. A lot of songs I don't recognize and they do a couple of big hits they had. The tour seems to be based around the three MTV hits they had plus six other songs. And I don't want to be associated with that. Luckily for us we had enough hits that the whole set is pretty much hits."
Also slated for release is a DVD version of the album, with additional acoustic tracks, recorded in an MTV-like "rugs and candles" setting, showing up on the VHS version only, to add extra value to that package. Don has also indicated that in fact three members of the band are trying to get solo records done.
"The record company in Japan has asked all three of us to do solo records," explains a busy, busy Don. "So Reb is in a similar situation to me. He's had a bunch of material from the last few years, extra material that was unsuitable for Winger or Alice Cooper or Dokken for that matter. Even though Reb is the youngest guy in the band you would think that he has more of the late '90s, 2000 influences, but he seems to be more retro than I am. He's not into metal at all, he's really rock 'n' roll. His solo record sounds like Robin Trower. He is more of a retro stylist than I am. I'm more into the new stuff. Monster Magnet is one of my favorite bands. And Jeff (Pilson), same thing. Jeff's stuff sounds more English, like Radiohead. They're scheduled to come out in Japan only. My record is totally a bastard child, I don't know if it will even sell or be popular because people will think I sold out or something. It's all very mellow, it's like ten 'Alone Again' songs, very acoustic-oriented. There's hardly any drums, no rock songs on it at all, because if I do rock songs, they'll go on a Dokken album! This is just my schizo side. And it's got a lot of Eastern influences. I brought in all these Indian players playing tablas and and sitars, all these droning sounds. A lot of those instruments are on my album. I haven't decided what label it's going to be on here. I've got offers from two separate labels."
But the schedule dictates that this might all take awhile. "I've got this week to do the rough edits for the DVD," offers Don with a sigh. "Next week I'm in Carolina doing the online. The following week I have to do all the special effects, and then I have to fly to Germany to do what they call authorizing of the DVD, put the website and the merchandising and all that bullshit on it. And then I go on tour with Poison, and then we're off in August, and then I come back and I have to write a Dokken album. So I don't know what the hell I'm going to do with this solo album. But it will be out, God willing, I hope, before Christmas."