VAN HALEN | VAN HALEN II | Women and Children First | FAIR WARNING | DIVER DOWN | 1984

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VAN HALEN SECOND ALBUM, VAN HALEN II  

Edward Van Halen Plays "Spanish Fly" - an "Eruption"-ish acoustic song

Van Halen II was recorded in six days in early 1979, after the band was fresh off the tour supporting their debut album.  The album was released in March of 1979.  It is amazing how that compares to production of albums in our modern era.

The album kicks off with the remake of "You're No Good," a song that Ted Templeman told Ed they should play.

YOU'RE NO GOOD

DANCE THE NIGHT AWAY

SOMEBODY GET ME A DOCTOR

BOTTOMS UP!

OUTTA LOVE AGAIN

LIGHT UP THE SKY

SPANISH FLY

D.O.A.

WOMEN IN LOVE...

BEAUTIFUL GIRLS

Ed went ahead and came up with how he wanted to play the song.  Ted could not recognize when he first heard it, and told Edward Van Halen so.  "It doesn't sound anything like it to me."  Van Halen responded "that's why it will work." 

"Dance The Night Away" was the only song on Van Halen II written in the studio.  All other tracks were created before Van Halen 1 or on tour supporting Van Halen 1.  "Dance The Night Away" was and still is the best pop song of old Van Halen.  It's fun to hear when you're flying down the highway or live, at a Van Halen show. 

"Somebody Get Me A Doctor" had a 70 second guitar solo as a demo which had to be shortened down, it was decided.  I'm listening to that version as I dictate this and it is better because it's just as good, and longer!  The final version is tremendous however and has the sound Edward Van Halen likes out of his guitar today.  I believe without being told that Van Halen II is Edward Van Halen's favorite album for that reason.  It's evident it is his favorite guitar sound he ever achieved although I don't agree and I feel the sound he achieved for Van Halen 1 is his best sound ever. 

"Bottoms Up" was played on the Van Halen 1 tour at the end of a lot of shows and was reported by Dave as "this will show up on our very next album." 

"Outta Love Again" is one of those songs you go to the show and wish you heard today, but they can't play everything; that's impossible.  A very simple riff with a blazing solo to boot. 

"Light Up The Sky" was criticized by many parent groups saying the song was made to encourage children and teenagers to smoke, cigarettes and harder substances.  The opposing guitar and bass at the beginning was only done as such on this song, of all Van Halen's history.

"Spanish Fly" was Eddie's way of proving to the critics that his techniques did not employ tricks, multiple takes or any chicanery.  This solo is included in Eddie's 316, live guitar solo.  My son plays this so well, but his hands are bigger than mine and I digress.

"D.O.A." was also played live on the Van Halen 1 tour and announced by Dave as "going to be on our next record" and it was. 

"Women In Love" and "Beautiful Girls" are more pop Van Halen to go along with "Dance The Night Away" which makes this album evidence that Roth Van Halen DID have a pop flair to it, akin to the flair Van Hagar always showed. 

Two songs that were originally intended to be on this album but then were not are "Eyes Of The Night" and "Down In Flames".  Never recorded for any album, is it possible either or both will appear on Van Halen's 2011 or 2012 album?  They are fantastic songs!

 

 

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