1972 Case File #49.

Alice Cooper
Alice Cooper, School’s Out

File Between: The Stooges and Sammy Davis, Jr.

Comments: The title track has long been my favorite Alice Cooper song, but I was surprised to find that it didn’t overshadow the rest of the album. I may not be, strictly speaking, the key demographic for Alice Cooper’s music, but I think I appreciate his show-biz inclinations more than the hard-rock fans who tend to claim him as one of their own more frequently. By breaking up their matey hard rock with smoky lounge tunes, Bernstein/Sondheim covers, and the ash-end of psychedelia, the band makes a record that doesn’t quite cohere into the concept album about high school hormones it wants to be, but which wouldn’t in fact be all that bad as the basis for a musical. Although compared to another famous concept album about adolescence that came out around the same time, School’s Out is far more recognizable and relatable, I find, than Quadrophenia, even down to its less-grandiose ambitions. These are the kids Springsteen will be singing about in “Glory Days.” They never went on to either change the world or drown in the ocean. Alice Cooper himself is now doing evenings on the local album-rock station, son of the faceless Phoenix suburbs to the end.

A Keeper? It’s more fun to think about than to listen to, but it’s not at all bad to listen to.

Vinyl Rip: Blue Turk

One Thought on “1972 Case File #49.

  1. I’d buy this album, but mainly for the thrill of buying an album that comes with paper panties! School’s Out is a classic, My Stars is a personal favorite, and Gutter Cat vs. The Jets is kind of fun (it always reminds me of the musical, Cats. Weird, huh?) The rest, in my opinion, is good but not great.

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