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Bad for Good

Jim Steinman

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Album Review

After penning the songs for Meat Loaf's massively successful Bat Out of Hell album, Jim Steinman decided to step into the spotlight himself when his singer's voice was too damaged to record a follow-up. The result was 1981's Bad for Good, an epic slab of operatic rock that is very much in the same vein of Meat Loaf's work, but nowhere near as satisfying. The first problem is Steinman's voice: he simply doesn't have the vocal range or lung power necessary to make this dramatic style of rock & roll work. For example of this problem, look no further than "Left in the Dark"; he struggles to keep up with vocal demands of this orchestral ballad, resulting in a vocal that sounds strained and occasionally off-key. The second problem is that some of the songs repeat the Bat Out of Hell formula instead of building upon it; the obvious culprit in this arena is "Dance In My Pants," a duet that gratuitously recycles the battle of the sexes verbal sparring and the multi-part structure of Meat Loaf's "Paradise by the Dashboard Light" to less-impressive effect. Despite these problems, a handful of gems shine through: "Surf's Up" is a strong power ballad that effectively combines the Steinman songwriting style with Beach Boys-style production elements, and "Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through" is a heart-tugging testament to the inspirational power of rock & roll that draws its power from a sublime chorus layered with soaring background vocals. Ultimately, Bad for Good is too inconsistent and eccentric to keep the attention of the casual listener, but remains an interesting listen for anyone who appreciates Jim Steinman's one-of-a-kind style of epic-size rock & roll. ~ Donald A. Guarisco, Rovi

Biography

Born: 01 November 1947 in Claremont, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Best known in conjunction with his enormously successful collaborations with singer Meat Loaf, producer and composer Jim Steinman rose to the top of the pop charts on the strength of his distinctively operatic artistic vision. A native of New York City trained as a classical pianist, he first surfaced during the mid-'70s with the off-Broadway musical More Than You Deserve; among its cast was Houston-born Marvin Lee Aday, aka Meat Loaf. The two men reunited a few years later for a tour with the National...
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Bad for Good, Jim Steinman
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