Adrian's Solo Discography Ranked - The Complete List

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Psycho Motel - State Of Mind
  • Sins Of Your Father - The opening riff makes a statement.
THE one song to make someone jump (give someone a fright). Don't tell the person you're gonna play something, turn it on, fairly loud, if possible. And this song is the one to totally shock someone. That beginning is merciless.
 
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Jer

My sins are many
Psycho Motel - Welcome To The World
  • The Last Chain - Cool industrial intro, love the dark feel. Strong verse, pretty good pre-chorus, and a great chorus. Nice instrumental break with a sweet bluesy solo. Digging Andy Makin's vocals. Nice outro. 8/10.
  • A Quarter To Heaven - Strong verse with nice guitar stylings and a great buildup through the pre-chorus. The chorus unfortunately loses that head of steam, but is still pretty good. Classy solo break and a sweet outro. 7/10.
  • Rain - I really like the off-kilter main riff. Good verse, somewhat weaker pre-chorus, but a great chorus. Nice, high-energy solo. Andy's vocal riffing on the chorus makes for a nice exit, too. 8/10.
  • Believe - Great atmospheric verses trade back and forth with cool guitar breaks. A nice pre-chorus builds up to an underwhelming but still pretty good chorus. Good solo, great outro. 8/10.
  • With You Again - The bass player seems to be taking a cue from Bruce Dickinson's "Taking The Queen", but that's not necessarily a bad thing. This is a sweet but meaty ballad with a great verse, a good chorus, and nice electric accents around the acoustic guitars. The dual solo with Dave Murray is a nice touch, too. 8/10.
  • Into The Black - The opening riff smacks you across the face like a ton of bricks! Andy is in full Layne Staley mode here. The verses are good, the pre-chorus is better, and the chorus is almost great. An odd-rhythm instrumental break leads into a pretty good solo, then a moodier version of the verse. Strong outro. 8/10.
  • No Loss To Me - Decent opening riff, cool verse. Catchy pre-chorus, but the chorus is pretty monotonous. Nice guitar atmospherics. An aggressive break leads into a tasteful harmonized section and a pretty good solo. Good stuff, but not quite on the level of the earlier songs. 7/10.
  • Underground - A soaring guitar intro leads into an appealing verse. The pre-chorus is OK, but the chorus is glorious! I love the little tease where they make you wait a bit before the second chorus, too. Nice epic ending. Definitely the highlight of the album. 9/10.
  • Welcome To The World - An aggressive intro gives way to a cool verse groove and a strong chorus. Love that sweet bluesy bridge that's bookended by the opening riff. Nice melodic solo. 8/10.
  • Something Real - Nice funky rhythms through the verse and pre-chorus. Not a big fan of the verse vocals, but the pre-chorus and chorus are great. Sweet solo and a very cool and funky instrumental break. The smoother take on the chorus late in the song is great, as is the outro. Gotta round this one up to a 9/10.
  • Innocence - Another well-executed ballad with a good verse, a great pre-chorus, and a nice but slightly disappointing chorus. 8/10.
  • I'm Alive - A jazzy intro leads into a cool, funky verse, a strong pre-chorus, and an almost great chorus. Love the uptempo bluesy solo break. A very strong 8/10.
  • Hypocrisy - An appealing verse, a great pre-chorus, and a solid chorus. The solo break is bizarre and off-rhythm, but I dig it. The ending is kind of awkward and sudden. Still merits an 8/10.
  • Just Like A Woman (B-side) - A classy cover, and arguably Andy's strongest vocal performance, which was surprising to me. 7/10.
If you ever wondered what Alice In Chains would have sounded like if Adrian Smith was a founding member, here's your answer.

I think this is an improvement on the previous Psycho Motel album in almost every way -- better production, a better singer, and much more consistent songwriting (an 8.0 average for the album tracks!). Sorry @Forostar , but I've been listening to this album for over 20 years and the luster still hasn't worn off. I love it.

Really the only criticisms I could offer are that while the album is consistently great, it only really knocks it out of the park on "Underground" -- and the singer often sounds like he's holding back a little bit. With a few tweaks and a less restrained vocal performance this album could have crossed over from greatness into excellence and maybe have become an all-time classic.

While many folks mourned the presumed end of Bruce Dickinson's solo efforts when Iron Maiden reunited (including me), I also mourned the loss of this incarnation of Psycho Motel. Since Adrian was touring with Bruce through this time period (1997/98), he never really got the chance to promote this album. I would have loved to see this band live.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Glad you love it Jer. I do not like the second half much. Repetitive music, not adventurous, not much feel nor originality. Also no melodies that keep me on the edge or that are memorable. It comes down to taste but I do think the first singer is a better one. Bigger range, less monotone voice, more power.

My complete Psycho Motel ratings:

Psycho Motel - State of Mind
  • Sins of Your Father - 9
  • World's on Fire - 7
  • Psycho Motel - 9
  • Western Shore - 9
  • Rage - 8
  • Killing Time - 8
  • Time is a Hunter - 7
  • Money to Burn - 8
  • City of Light - 9
  • Excuse Me - 9
  • Last Goodbye (B-side) - 6
  • (Can't) Wait (B-side) - 5
Psycho Motel - Welcome to the World
  • The Last Chain - 8
  • A Quarter to Heaven - 7
  • Rain - 9
  • Believe - 9
  • With You Again - 9
  • Into the Black - 7
  • No Loss to Me - 6
  • Underground - 6
  • Welcome to the World - 5
  • Something Real - 5
  • Innocence - 5
  • I'm Alive - 6
  • Hypocrisy - 7
  • Just Like a Woman (B-side) - 5
 
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Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
I don’t think either singer is perfect, but they’re both decent and were able to do a good job with their material.
 

GhostofCain

Ancient Mariner
  • Just Like A Woman (B-side) - A classy cover, and arguably Andy's strongest vocal performance, which was surprising to me. 7/10.

If I am not mistaken, that song is an outtake from the State of Mind sessions, with Solli on vocals. It was misplaced on the botched Psycho Motel re-releases.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
If that is true (and sorry Jer):

Haaaaa ha ha ha ha ha ha! Strongest vocal performance, Solli is great isn't he?
:------)
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
Primal Rock Rebellion - Awoken Broken
  1. "No Friendly Neighbour" - Wow, so much power! I love it! The vocalist is actually pretty good. 9/10
  2. "No Place Like Home" - Shorter and faster, but the chorus is still great. 9/10
  3. "I See Lights" - Another awesome song. Slower and even more powerful. Love the snarl this guy gives off. 9/10
  4. "Bright As A Fire" - Good, but not as good as the previous three. 7/10
  5. "Savage World" - Another faster song. I like it. 8/10
  6. "Tortured Tone" - Incredible song. Love it. First 10 since ASAP! 10/10
  7. "White Sheet Robes" - Also a good song. Second-best so far. 10/10
  8. "As Tears Come Falling From The Sky" - Oooh, I like it. 9/10
  9. "Awoken Broken" - Intense. Great title track. 9/10
  10. "Search for Bliss" - Nice. 8/10
  11. "Snake Ladders" - Decent. 7/10
  12. "Mirror and the Moon" - Nice ending to the album. Not as good as some of the other highlights, but they couldn't have ended it better. 8/1o
Best album yet. Everything that wasn't great about the Psycho Motel albums has been pretty much ironed-out. I like the vocalist, I like the production, I like the instruments. Great stuff. Nice going, H!

Will listen to the bonus track later.
 

Jer

My sins are many
If that is true (and sorry Jer):

Haaaaa ha ha ha ha ha ha! Strongest vocal performance, Solli is great isn't he?
:------)
LOL, hilarious. I guess Solli sounds better in his lower register. I still prefer Makin's vocals on the album tracks to Solli's on his album tracks, for the most part.
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
Primal Rock Rebellion bonus tracks:
  • "Scientist" - I wasn't thrilled with the beginning but by the end I was into it. Decent, but it's definitely bonus track material. 7/10
  • "Mooncusser" - I like it, but it's really just randomness. 5/10
The link you posted for "Mooncusser" actually had both songs on it, so I was a little confused when it sounded exactly like "Scientist". :p
 

Jer

My sins are many
The link you posted for "Mooncusser" actually had both songs on it, so I was a little confused when it sounded exactly like "Scientist". :p
Yeah, I couldn't find an isolated version, and I figured it would make more sense to post an isolated link for "Scientist" so there'd be no confusion about what was what.
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
Bruce Dickinson collaborations
  • "Road to Hell" - Great song. 7/10
  • "Welcome to the Pit" - Great song. 7/10
  • "The Ghost of Cain" - Great song. 9/10
  • "Killing Floor" - Great song. 8/10
  • "Machine Men" - Great song. 8/10
  • "Return of the King" - Great song. 9/10
It may be weird seeing that I'm not giving The Chemical Wedding's tracks 10s, but hear me out: I'm viewing this purely from an Adrian standpoint. He plays second fiddle to Bruce in their songs together, and I think it would be more fitting for a song that Adrian is the backbone of take top honors. Thus, the two bonus tracks from AOB and TCW get 9s, because his playing is, IMO, crucial to the songs; the TCW tracks get 8s because they're better than the AOB tracks, which get 7s.

Michael Kiske & Kai Hansen collaborations
  • "The Calling" - Pretty cool song. 8/10
  • "New Horizons" - Decent stuff. 7/10
 

Jer

My sins are many
Primal Rock Rebellion - Awoken Broken

I expect this album to be pretty polarizing because of the vocals. I typically have problems dealing with extreme vocals, and it definitely required an adjustment for me to accept Mikee Goodman's voice. I think in the end I was able to get into it because the Cookie Monster moments weren't overwhelming, and they were mixed in with spoken word and more melodic vocals. That said, I don't judge Goodman's voice in the same way that I would a traditional singer's, because that wouldn't exactly be fair.
  • No Friendly Neighbour - A sinister industrial opening explodes into a cutting and melodic riff. Nice dynamics and tradeoffs between guitar and vocals. Cool spacey guitar accents throughout the song. Goodman's vocals are absolutely savage in places, but it's always balanced by a strong melodic sensibility in the rest of the music. Great outro with acoustic instrument accents. Love this song. 9/10.
  • No Place Like Home - An off-rhythm riff starts a steamroller that never lets up. Love that ascending rhythm guitar. The chorus is great, and gets pushed over the top by Adrian's backing vocals. Great instrumental break and solo. Excellent song! 10/10.
  • I See Lights - This one settles into a slower, moodier groove that's broken up by an occasional percussive section. Adrian sneaks in for some sweet co-lead vocals. A neat experimental solo leads into an extended melodic break. Good stuff, though it never fully achieves liftoff. 7/10.
  • Bright As A Fire - A moody verse with nice melodic guitar accents fades away, then slams back in with force. Good melodic chorus. An explosive solo leads into an uptempo bridge that changes up the feel halfway through, then gives us some more sweet soloing before the chorus reprise. Nice buildup at the end. 8/10.
  • Savage World - Harsh verse, catchy but shaky chorus. Nice slower bridge. Solidly good, but not great. 7/10.
  • Tortured Tone - Moody, melodic verse and pre-chorus with nice string accents. Fantastic chorus with really interesting vocal harmonies. A more aggressive bridge / solo section folds back into an even more lush version of the chorus. Great moody outro with creepy strings. Love this song. 10/10.
  • White Sheet Robes - A cool pulsing main riff drives an aggressive verse. Neat melodic chorus with neoclassical underpinnings. A straight-up metal interlude with some spacy guitar accents gives way to a cool variant of the chorus before closing out with another round of verse and chorus. Great stuff. 8/10.
  • As Tears Come Falling From The Sky - A very brief spoken word piece with musical accents. Kinda cool, but I don't care quite that much about those things behind windows, behind curtains, behind windows, behind curtains. 6/10.
  • Awoken Broken - Another badass yet melodic riff starts off this steamroller. Aggressive verse, neat off-kilter melodic pre-chorus, and an even more aggressive chorus. A sparse break leads into a cool uptempo jammy solo section before rolling back into the crushing chorus. Very cool. 8/10.
  • Search For Bliss - A soaring guitar opener leads into a surprisingly gentle vocal intro. The aggression steps up a bit before cutting into a great melodic chorus that trades off vocals back and forth. An extremely aggressive break gives way to a somewhat smoother verse before the chorus reprise. Excellent song. 9/10.
  • Snake Ladders - A greasy, slower-paced number. I'm not that fond of the verse, and the chorus isn't particularly catchy, though it does get interesting when the backing vocals are added. The instrumental break is kind of blah, and there's lots of stream-of-consciousness stuff going on in the vocals. Decent, but not great. 6/10.
  • Mirror And The Moon - Nice string and acoustic accents on this album's somewhat twisted take on a ballad. (Slide guitar, too!) Gentle, appealing chorus. Neat off-kilter instrumental break. A cool uptempo acoustic section gradually gives way to just the strings, which tie things up beautifully. 8/10.
  • Scientist (B-side) - Love the opening riff and some of the other guitar work here, and the pre-chorus is pretty good. Unfortunately the vocals meander all over the place and the chorus doesn't really drive it home. I'll round this up to a 6/10.
  • Mooncusser (B-side) - A brief, throwaway groove with vocals. Strangely catchy, but there just isn't much there. Let's say 5/10.
A monster of an album that manages to be crushingly heavy and surprisingly melodic at the same time. Adrian experiments with some really interesting sounds and structures here, and totally cuts loose in a number of places.

The high points here are extremely high, but the album isn't quite as consistent as Welcome To The World, IMO. Still, the album tracks averaged an 8.0 in my ratings, tying the second Psycho Motel album overall; and this album received two 10/10's from me, when none of the previous albums got anything higher than a 9/10. I guess that breaks the tie and makes this one my favorite!

While I'd love to hear Adrian do a guitar instrumental album, and a blues album could also be interesting, I'd really enjoy another Primal Rock Rebellion album too.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Bruce Dickinson collaborations
  • "Road to Hell" - Great song. 7/10
  • "Welcome to the Pit" - Great song. 7/10
  • "The Ghost of Cain" - Great song. 9/10
  • "Killing Floor" - Great song. 8/10
  • "Machine Men" - Great song. 8/10
  • "Return of the King" - Great song. 9/10
It may be weird seeing that I'm not giving The Chemical Wedding's tracks 10s, but hear me out: I'm viewing this purely from an Adrian standpoint. He plays second fiddle to Bruce in their songs together, and I think it would be more fitting for a song that Adrian is the backbone of take top honors. Thus, the two bonus tracks from AOB and TCW get 9s, because his playing is, IMO, crucial to the songs; the TCW tracks get 8s because they're better than the AOB tracks, which get 7's.
Basically, The Chemical Wedding is not perfect at all. It has at least two tracks that are less good than a bonus track.
 
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