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Diver Down

Van Halen

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iTunes Editors' Notes

With a shocking five cover tunes, Diver Down is the oddest album in the Van Halen collection. It’s a heads-up on the future solo career of their lead singer David Lee Roth and it’s Roth that shines throughout. His spirited interjections during the Kinks’ “Where Have All The Good Times Gone!,” Roy Orbison’s “(Oh) Pretty Woman” and the vaudevillian “Big Bad Bill (Is Sweet William Now)” are pure fun and tease the DLR way. Eddie Van Halen’s guitars are muted here, given their spots more on the instrumentals than in the actual songs. “Intruder” is the menacing air-raid siren at its best. “Little Guitars” is the intricate acoustic piece. Of the originals, “Hang ‘Em High” is pure Van Halen and “Little Guitars (Intro)” picks up a frenetic groove. “Secrets” is mellow. “Dancing In the Street” is goofy and surprisingly tame. “The Full Bug” is playful and “Happy Trails” is hilarious. This is the most light-hearted album in the Van Halen catalog.


Formed: 1974 in Pasadena, CA

Genre: Rock

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

With their 1978 eponymous debut, Van Halen simultaneously rewrote the rules of rock guitar and hard rock in general. Guitarist Eddie Van Halen redefined what the electric guitar could do, developing a blindingly fast technique with a variety of self-taught two-handed tapping, hammer-ons, pull-offs, and effects that mimicked the sounds of machines and animals. It was wildly inventive and over the top, equaled only by vocalist David Lee Roth, who brought the role of a metal singer to near-performance...
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