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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

Customer Reviews

Not bad for a non-singer

My brother actually bought this album back when it first came out. He was a big Meatloaf fan and enjoyed Steinman's sound. Steinman can write a great song, but he can't carry a tune well. Despite that, this is a fun album full of Jim trying his best. If you want to hear most of these songs sung well, pick up Bat Out Of Hell: Back Into Hell.

Love it! Thank you iTunes!

I must take exception to the tone deaf critics claiming Steinman was incapable of carrying a tune. Is it obvious he was in an area possibly better suited for other voices? At times, yes. Nevertheless, he carried it off extremely well and, quite frankly, better than Meatloaf’s later covers of several of these songs.

Just Ok.

I absolutely Love Jim Steinman, just not his singing voice. He is an amazing composer and an amazing director, but singing isn't his forte (no pun intended). The album isn't bad, it just isn't great.

Biography

Born: November 1, 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...
Full Bio
Bad for Good, Jim Steinman
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