This is the Alice Cooper bands last great record. They did one more after this but it kind of sucked. This version (The SACD) is by far the best sounding version. Even tops the deluxe version put out about 12 years ago (but you don't get the bonus live CD). Again nice warm bass and great separation. Hopefully they will do all four Alice Cooper's classics (this, Killers, Love it to Death and Schools Out). The songs on this record are some of Alice's best. Raped and Freezing, Billion Dollar Babies, Elected and No More Mr Nice Guy to name but a few. Besides Welcome to My Nightmare solo Alice Cooper never came close to this peak with the Alice Cooper group (The first seven albums were done by the Group Alice Cooper. After that Alice went solo taking the name with him).
This is one of the great Hard Rock/ Glam records of the period. Where Bowie went the spaceman route and Bolan went the pretty boy route Glam in the US was much darker Lou Reed, New York Dolls and Alice Cooper to name a few.
Over all this is a classic and should be checked out by anyone exploring rock. Just an FYI this SACD also plays as a CD that is from the same remaster.
on July 2, 2004
Billion Dollar Babies (1973.) Alice Cooper's sixth album.
Alice Cooper had released five albums, up to the beginning of 1973, all of which were excellent. From the bizzare-but-still-excellent psychedelic rock of the classic band's debut Pretties For You to the hard and bluesy School's Out, Alice Cooper's band proved to be a damn fine rock and roll quintet that could cover a plethora of styles. Alice Cooper, Glen Buxton, Dennis Dunaway, Neal Smith, and Michael Bruce had proven their musical genius five times already, and in 1973, the band released Billion Dollar Babies, the album that would grant them their immortal status as rock and roll icons. Is the album overrated, or does it deserve its reputation? Read on for my review.
This album deserves every bit of praise it gets - period. Of the ten songs on the album, five of them went on to become fairly popular. Among the popular songs are the classic rock anthem No More Mr. Nice Guy, which is probably Alice Cooper's biggest hit ever released. And who could forget Elected, Alice classic "I want to be president" song? The song is actually a reworking of a much earlier tune the band released. In my opinion, the original version is better, but this version still rocks. The title track is the true highlight of the album; it's gloomy hard rock as only the Coop could do. And on this track, doing lead vocals with Alice, is none other than sixties pop star Donovan Leitch! Even though this song is basically as "anti-Donovan" sounding as you can get, he does a damn good job on it! The bluesy Generation Landslide is a sequel to the story told in the title track, and it too is excellent. Another fairly popular track is the mini-epic opener, Hello Hurray. It's too bad the band didn't release this song as a single, because I'm pretty sure it would have been a million plus seller. The other five tracks on the album are considerably less popular than these five, but they are no less excellent, for the most part. Raped And Freezin', Sick Things, and I Love The Dead are regular Alice Cooper masterpieces. Even the short little piano-heavy track, Mary Ann, is pretty good. In the end, this stands as one of Alice Cooper's strongest albums. It's no wonder so many fans call it his best and most popular.
In addition to the original CD issue of this album, there is a two-disc deluxe edition available. The deluxe version of the album has the complete original album on disc one, and a hell of a lot of bonus tracks on disc two. The bonus tracks are mostly live concert cuts, but there are a few demos and outtakes as well. The deluxe version costs more than the standard version, but not a whole lot more. Take my advice and shell out the extra cash for the deluxe edition.
Billion Dollar Babies is one of those rock and roll masterpieces that's just so good that it's hard to describe in words. Although not my personal favorite Alice Cooper album (that honor would have to go to 1971's Killer), many fans call it their favorite, and I really can't blame them for doing such. If you're new to Alice Cooper, this should be the first one of his albums that you buy. No classic rock collection is complete without this album - no questions asked.
on April 17, 2013
Un de ces meilleur album ...je préférais le groupe original qui est sur cet album ...ils ont créés tout les succès
D'Alice ....Je ne sias pas pourquoi ils ont été virés ...dommage pou mrs Cooper parce qu'il n'y a rien eu de bon apprêt
Not a big fan of 1972's "School's Out" album, the reason "Billion Dollar Babies" appeals to me more is that here Alice and the boys successfully mesh the Broadway stylings with their gritty rock aesthetic. There's not too much of one or too little of the other here.
Opening with the almost-majestic "Hello Hooray", the album also contains anthems like the celebratory, exuberant "Elected" and the pop-ish "No More Mr. Nice Guy".
"Raped and Freezin'" boasts a cold-start, punchy drums, sharp guitar work and ear-catching piano.
The high point, "Sick Things" is like a musical serpent as the bassline and horns wrap themselves around Alice's ghoulish vocals. High marks also go to the title track with its difficult-to-sing-along-with structure and double-tracked vocals featuring Donovan Leitch. "Mary Ann" is a short, '30s-flavored piano ditty with an ironic final line; and the acoustic "Generation Landslide" provides nice contrast to some of the album's rockers. I subtracted one star because "I Love The Dead" tries a little too hard to be macabre and the dentist-phobic "Unfinished Sweet" rambles.
On "Love It To Death" and "Killer" you could tell this was a band having fun performing songs they were proud of, but had no pretentions. "Billion Dollar Babies" feels more like a planned spectacle: Everything's bigger, more grandiose and flamboyant here. Not to say it isn't great, it just has a different feel and is more showy than "Love It To Death" or "Killer".
The album itself is 4.5 stars, but the double-disc presentation with the excellent live CD pushes it up to 5 stars--a perfect release. Too bad "Love It To Death" and "Killer" didn't get the same treatment, with rare early demos and live versions included.
on October 4, 2002
On first listen, I thought this was a greatest hits album (I'm reviewing the non-re-mastered version). It had been many years since I'd heard the album. Yet song after song was not only instantly familiar, but familiar in a very positive sense. The true hits from the album are "Hello Hooray", "Elected", and "No More Mr. Nice Guy". But "Raped and Freezin'", "Billion Dollar Babies", "Sick Things", "Mary Ann", and "I Love the Dead" were so familiar they might have well been singles.
Whenever young punks tried to turn me on to Marilyn Manson (or is he already passe'?), I roll my eyes. I've heard Marilyn, I've seen the show, and sorry, but it's nothing new. Manson doesn't have the worst song selection in the world, but he basically shocks just to shock. Alice Cooper did this kind of stuff over twenty-five years ago, and did it much better. He had a theatrical flair for all of his songs, and each one seemed to be crafted to stand on it's own. And even if you thought the "Alice" character was disturbed, he was still a little lovable.
It was good to hear this one again, and I've got to dust off the rest of the ol' Cooper collection.
on May 30, 2000
1973 was a banner year for the Alice Cooper Group, and the theme for that year was excess:the biggest tour,hype and album that Alice and cronies could dream up.They were transformed into the Billion Dollar Babies,bad dreams of a warped society and they flaunted it for all they were worth.All aspects of modern life were victims of the Coop's satiric jabs:public image(NO MORE MR NICE GUY), the model family(GENERATION LANDSLIDE),male/female stereotypes(RAPED AND FREEZIN') and the political structure(ELECTED).Other topics given the ACG once over included:cross dressing,blow up dolls, showbusiness in the American Dream,various types of taboos,dentistry and of course,horror;all set to catchy rock riffs.The stage show was just as impressive with swords,fake dollar bills,and an Alice beheaded before returning for the encore. BILLION DOLLAR BABIES is the ALICE COOPER GROUP at the peak of their powers,and a must have for any novice Coop fan.
on April 25, 2004
I've been waiting so long to write this review. I love Alice Cooper. I love him to death. Billion Dollar Babies starts off with a killer tune, "Hello Hooray." It's an awesome song. But the next one "Raped And Freezin," comes nowhere near to being as good. "Elected" is better than "Raped...," but still not as good as Hello Hooray, and never will be.
The song, "Billion Dollar Babies" is the best rocker on the whole cd. Donovan does an excellent duet with Alice. Over all these years, I never knew it was Donovan singing. I only discovered this from the liner notes and photos, after buying the cd a couple years ago (2002).
"Unfinished Sweet" is one of the throw-away tunes on the album. Naturally, some people like it, but I don't. So there.
In fact, you can dispose of the entire live bonus disc too. Why listen to a cd of inferior quality when you have the same songs with a beautiful studio sound on the original album? Of course, there's three non-live studio cuts at the end of the live disc: "Coal Black Model T (outtake)," "Son Of Billion Dollar Babies (Generation Landslide) (outtake)" and "Slick Black Limousine," two of which are not available on any other Cooper album. But they're not that good anyway. And "Son Of Billion Dollar Babies (Generation Landslide) (outtake)," might sound alright, but why bother with it when you have the same song, "Generation Landslide," on the studio album?
Generation Landslide is a great song. I find it interesting that they didn't include a live cut of it on the live bonus disc. Instead, they gave us a studio outtake of it called Son Of Billion Dollar Babies. But don't worry. If you like the song that much, there's a live version of it on "Special Forces," Alice Cooper's 1981 album. The song title is "Generation Landslide '81 (Live)"
But don't get excited, Special Forces is not a live album. "Generation..." is the only live track on it. And guess what? The song ain't that good. Stick with the Billion Dollar Babies version.
"No More Mr. Nice Guy" is one of the greatest songs on Billion Dollar Babies. Written by Alice Cooper and Michael Bruce, it's no wonder they released it as a single in 1973. I remember playing it on the jukebox almost every time I went into Jolly's, a burger joint on Kensington avenue. "Frankenstien," by Johnny Winters (or was it his brother, the Edgar Winter Group?), was another crowd favorite at the time.
Alice Cooper are a band of sick puppies. You gotta love the song "Sick Things." When he sings "I love you, things, I see - As much as you love me - You things are heavenly when you come worship me." Is he talking about us, his fans?
I love "Mary Ann." Nothing but a solo piano and two minutes of Alice singing in a longing, nostalgic tone. Not a rock and roll song, but still not out of place on the album.
Listen closely to the very beginning of "I Love The Dead." The first few seconds of the song sound almost identical to the biginning of the song "Welcome To My Nightmare." Then as you're listening to the rest of the song, you'll realize that "I Love The Dead" would fit perfectly on the Welcome To My Nightmare album. In fact, the last thirty seconds of this song is classic "...Nightmare" material.
This got me to wondering, just how many of the Welcome To My Nightmare songs did Bob Ezrin already have written in his head before he and Alice dumped the band after the Muscle Of Love album? Who knows? Who even cares? Welcome To My Nightmare is a fantastic album, with or without the old band members. And so is Billion Dollar Babies.
on December 23, 2003
1973's "Billion Dollar Babies" is undoubtedly the best record ever to be made by the Alice Cooper band. In this CD, Alice Cooper, Glen Buxton, Dennis Dunaway, Neil Smith, and Michael Bruce painstakingly composed a tracklist that intricately blends hard rock with flamboyant showmanship. In addition, producer Bob Ezrin (who would later play an integral part in Cooper's "Welcome to My Nightmare") added a symphonic touch to this album, tediously incorporating a piano, violins, horns, and trumpets. Alice, meanwhile, wonderfully portrays the spectacle's carny barker; he utters his lyrics with a bold and sarcastic sneer, mocking America's obsession with money and politics. Certainly, no other artist could pull this off with such finesse.
"Raped and Freezin'" is a humorous narrative about a hitchhiker who (after trying to find directions to Santa Fe) is kidnapped by a woman, violated, and then is left stranded in Chihuahua without any clothes on. This song carries plenty of wit, since the main characters' gender roles are reversed. In the simple and direct "Elected," Alice goes on a political campaign to become President of the United States (maybe he'll kick George Bush out of the White House!). Of course, this one track resulted from the hurt and embarrassment of Nixon's Watergate scandal. "Billion Dollar Babies" (sung by Alice and Donovan) is a twisted duet about decadence and debauchery; while comparing a woman to an anatomically correct blow-up doll, the lyrics celebrate the seedy glamour of prostitution and adult films. "Unfinished Sweet" is a diabolical and disjointed track about Alice's trip to the dentist; as the gas makes him unconscious, he participates in a hallucinating mission of espionage with James Bond! In the album's single, "No More Mr. Nice Guy," (a song that would later be covered by Megadeth's Dave Mustaine) Alice revels in his reputation as an obscene rock star; he expresses how proud he is in his flirtation with controversy. "Generation Landslide" mocks the lifestyle of middle-class suburbia; he transforms the American consumer society into a laughing stock. Even the track's two acoustic guitars clink together like coins dropped in a piggy bank! In the chilling "Sick Things," Alice views his fans as sideshow pets. The track's deranged bass rhythm drags like a strongman pulling six Cadillac cars with an iron chain. "Mary Ann" is a romantic piano ballad that will astonish the ears with its sexual irony. Last but not least, "I Love the Dead" is a disturbing, Broadway-style tune about necrophilia. In graphic detail, the lyrics picture a pale, blue corpse staring through its empty eyes. While this is not the first time Alice writes about cinematic horror, "I Love the Dead" foreshadows the coming of "Welcome to My Nightmare," his cadaverous crypt cabaret.
I can guarantee that "Billion Dollar Babies" is worth the money. It's an album suitable for anyone in love with both rock music and the theater. Let the show begin!
on October 3, 2003
[THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE ORIGINAL VERSION OF THE ALBUM. I HAVE POSTED A SEPARATE REVIEW FOR THE TWO-DISC REMASTERED EDITION. I MAY COMBINE THE TWO EVENTUALLY.]
In 1973, the Alice Cooper band released its sixth album - Billion Dollar Babies. This is the album that would go on to become the band's most popular - and with good reason. It's very rarely a band can shell out a rock and roll album of such quality, but here the Alice Cooper band does it like it's nothing at all. Read on for my review of one of the greatest rock albums of all time - Billion Dollar Babies.
Hello Hooray - This melodic hard rocker opens the album. I can't believe this song never went on to be come a huge hit, because it's quite possibly the best song featured here.
Raped And Freezin' - This is one of the bluesy hard rockers you've come to know and love the Alice Cooper band for. This is a classic example of a song that was never a hit, but should have been.
Elected - An Alice Cooper classic. This song is from the point of view of a man who wishes to become president. It may sound like a weak idea for a song, but the Alice Cooper band pulls it off nicely, and when it's over, you'll be angry at yourself for ever having doubted it!
Billion Dollar Babies - The title track is another one of the Alice Cooper band's classic. This is a straight-up hard rocker, in which Alice Cooper pulls off a pretty good John Lennon impersonation (not sure if that's what he was going for.) This song is more than worthy of all the credit it gets.
Unfinished Sweet - This one's the perfect cross between hard rock and classic rock. Only the Alice Cooper band could evenly mix the styles and make the final result this good.
No More Mr. Nice Guy - Probably the Alice Cooper band's biggest hit, this one's a rocker about a man who goes from good to bad, due to the world around him changing, and not in his favor. To not like this song is the ultimate sin!
Generation Landslide - This one's a follow-up to the story told in the album's title track, though the stylings used in the two songs are quite different (this one is a bit more on the classic rock side than the hard rock side.) Another excellent track.
Sick Things - If the title didn't give it away, this is one of the tracks in which Alice gets in touch with his deranged side. It's a slow and gloomy hard rocker that any fan of Alice is sure to live.
Mary Ann - Here we've got a piano-heavy ballad. Normally, I'm not a big fan of tracks like this, but somehow, the Alice Cooper band manages to pull them off very well!
I Love The Dead - This sounds almost like a cross between the last two tracks, believe it or not. The oddest thing is that fusing the piano with Alice's deranged side actually works out pretty well!
Overall this is an excellent album. But before you buy it, be aware of your options. There are two versions of the album avaialble - The old one, which is single disc, or the new one, which is double disc (the second disc is all bonus material). The one with the second disc costs a little more, but I suggest shelling out the few extra bucks. Whatever version you buy, Billion Dollar Babies is a rock and roll masterpiece, worthy of a place in your rock and roll CD collection.
on April 1, 2003
After The Alice Cooper Band released the massively successful "School's Out" in 1972, in 1973 they returned to the studio to record another masterpiece which they did. This album, "Billion Dollar Babies" is another genuine masterpiece. This album shows the band at their prime.
The opener, "Hello! Horray!" is a song about the fans and the concerts. The lyrics are so powerful in how Alice is singing. The lyrics go like "Hello! Horray! Let the show begin. I've been ready. Hello! Horray! Let the lights grow dim. I've been ready. Ready as this audience that's coming here to dream." This song is a classic. Another good classic is "Elected". The song is about presidential elections. It has a good anthem, a good chorus. "I'm your choice. I wanna be Elected. I'm your yankee doodle dandy in a gold Rolls Royce. I wanna be Elected. We're all gonna rock to the rules I make. I wanna be Elected, Elected, Elected."
The title track, "Billion Dollar Babies" is a cool, trashy, and sexy anthem. It starts out with a banging drum beat and then a guitar solo and Alice kick in with, "Billion Dollar Baby. Rubber little lady, slicker than a weasel. Grimy as an alley. Loves me like no other. Billion Dollar Baby. Rotten little monster, baby, I adore you. Man or woman living couldn't love me like you, baby." A hard-core anthem, "No More Mr. Nice Guy" is a really good anthem that has excellent guiatr riffs. "I used to be such a sweet, sweet thing. 'Til they got a hold of me. I opened doors for little old ladies. I helped the blind to see. I got no friends 'cause they read the papers. They can't be seen with me and I'm gettin' real shot down. And I'm feeling mean. No more Mister Nice Guy. No more Mister Clean. No more Mister Nice Guy. They say he's sick, he's obscene."
The great "Generation Landslide" is one of th best songs of the album. It has Michael Bruce doing the acoutic guitars and Glen Buxton doing the electric guitars. Those two different sounds made a great mix. Very catchy lyrics, and an easy-going rythem. The last track, "I Love The Dead" is a scary song that made Alice even more scarier. Some lyrics like, "I love the dead before they're cold. Their blueing flesh for me to hold. Cadaver eyes upon me see nothing. I love the dead before they rise. No farewells, no goodbyes. I never even knew your now-rotting face. While friends and lovers mourn your silly grave. I have other uses for you, Darling. I Love The Dead."
This is next album in your Alice Cooper collection. See The Alice Cooper Band at their best. IT IS A BILLION DOLLAR MASTERPIECE!!!