Dokken & Lynch Mob (and related bands)

Jer

Fuddy Buddy
The Dokken family tree is wide and deep, and there’s been a fair amount of activity in it lately, so I figured it merited its own thread rather than piggybacking on the hair metal thread.

My intent here was to provide a place to talk about projects involving the classic lineup of Dokken, including Don Dokken, George Lynch, Jeff Pilson, and Mick Brown. A few of these bands would be:
  • Dokken
  • Lynch Mob
  • Don Dokken
  • George Lynch
  • War & Peace
  • Lynch/Pilson
  • T&N
  • Sweet & Lynch
  • KXM
  • Ultraphonix
  • The End Machine
  • Black Swan
  • Dirty Shirley
...and probably several more I’m not thinking of.
 
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Jer

Fuddy Buddy
So, The End Machine. Robert Mason, George Lynch, Jeff Pilson, and Mick Brown.

I think people were hoping for it to sound like Dokken with Robert Mason on vocals, but it ended up sounding more like Lynch Mob Mk. II with Jeff Pilson on bass. There is some Dokken DNA here, but it’s more of a Shadowlife-era vibe underneath the bluesier Lynch Mob stylings.

There’s a noodly element to the music that I like, and Mason sounds great, but the album is definitely a mixed bag overall. Some strong tracks, some filler, and an unfortunate lack of energy compared to these folks’ strongest work.

I might do a track-by-track review if I feel inspired to, but let’s just say I’d rather listen to Wicked Underground or Only To Rise if I want to hear some latter-era Lynch.
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
Eh that list is only so so. It was a WatchMojo-esque one and some of the songs I don’t even like. Kiss of Death is overrated as hell.
 

Edington

Let's Get Volatile
I only like a handful of Dokken songs and the main reason I got into them is for George Lynch. Jesus, what a fuckin' incredible guitar player he is. I've got Back for the Attack and Under Lock and Key in my library, should give them a proper listen.

Also, Diesel, that list is garbage for only having "Heaven Sent" as an honourable mention. :nonono:
 

Jer

Fuddy Buddy
I only like a handful of Dokken songs and the main reason I got into them is for George Lynch. Jesus, what a fuckin' incredible guitar player he is. I've got Back for the Attack and Under Lock and Key in my library, should give them a proper listen.
BFTA is great, UL&K is OK. Tooth And Nail should be on your list. Lynch Mob’s Wicked Sensation is great if you can stand some dumber lyrics and a few of the quirks of the singer. Lynch/Pilson’s Wicked Underground and Sweet & Lynch’s Only To Rise are also very good. And the instrumental tracks from George Lynch’s Sacred Groove are also great, though the tracks with vocals...not so much.
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
I think I like the more hair band songs from them over their heavier work. “In My Dreams”, “Alone Again”, “Dream Warriors”, etc are all awesome.
 

Jer

Fuddy Buddy
I think I like the more hair band songs from them over their heavier work. “In My Dreams”, “Alone Again”, “Dream Warriors”, etc are all awesome.
Yeah, “Alone Again” is great. “Dream Warriors” is also pretty great, though the chorus is a bit cheesy. “In My Dreams” would have been great, but the chorus harmonies are so incredibly cheesy that I find them distracting.
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
I like them personally, makes it bring to life that "dream" thing it's talking about.
 

Edington

Let's Get Volatile
BFTA is great, UL&K is OK. Tooth And Nail should be on your list. Lynch Mob’s Wicked Sensation is great if you can stand some dumber lyrics and a few of the quirks of the singer. Lynch/Pilson’s Wicked Underground and Sweet & Lynch’s Only To Rise are also very good. And the instrumental tracks from George Lynch’s Sacred Groove are also great, though the tracks with vocals...not so much.
I like the title track of Tooth and Nail, and "Alone Again" has a wicked guitar solo* but I haven't heard much else from it. I'll take those suggestions on board.

*Does anyone else hear the similarity in the opening licks of this solo and Judas Priest's "A Touch of Evil"?
 

Jer

Fuddy Buddy
The End Machine - The End Machine
  • Leap Of Faith - A cool tapping intro breaks into a mid-paced bluesy groove. The verse is OK, the pre-chorus is a little brighter, and the chorus is solid with a great ending vocal line by Mason. A noodly interlude leads into a cool solo, with an intro reprise bringing us back to the chorus and a funky extended outro. Solid stuff. 7/10.
  • Hold Me Down - A spooky guitar intro breaks into a driving, blues-tinged riff that calms down a bit for a strong, uptempo verse. An OK pre-chorus leads into a solid, catchy chorus with nice tradeoff vocals. Another round of verse through chorus, then we break into an extended multi-part interlude with a darker feel. This cuts back into the pre-chorus and chorus, and a final outro section with vocals to close things out. Very solid rocker, a robust 7/10.
  • No Game - A bluesy mid-tempo intro gets some nice lead work before breaking into a smooth arpeggiated verse and a multi-part pre-chorus. The chorus is reasonably catchy and Dokken-esque, but I don’t like the repetitive guitar accent in the background, and it just feels a bit lacking overall. A brief clean interlude leads back into an abbreviated verse and more pre-chorus and chorus. Another interlude breaks into some great soloing, leading back into the clean section and a spoken-word bridge. A scream kicks back into the chorus before a quick wrap-up. This song has some nice bits and some weaker bits, but I think I’d round it down to 6/10.
  • Bulletproof - A clean bluesy intro blossoms into a fuller riff that leads into a so-so verse and a nicer pre-chorus. Ugh, WTF is with this anemic chorus? It’s a total snoozefest. More weak verse, good pre-chorus, and insipid chorus, before breaking into a nice clean interlude, a decent bridge, and a sweet extended solo. Ugh, back to that lame chorus again to close things out. The nicer bits can’t save this one from a 5/10.
  • Ride It - A heavy, driving riff kicks things off nicely, breaking into a decent verse. The pre-chorus has some half-spoken vocals with odd vocal harmonies, and then...WTF is with this chorus? “Ride it!”, wah, wah, “Drive it!”, wah, wah...blecch. Another round of this nonsense and then we get a pretty great extended solo section, and an ascending break that leads into a sweet acoustic interlude before returning to that turgid chorus and a merciful outro. There’s almost half of a good song here, but the rest is...ew. 4/10.
  • Burn The Truth - A bluesy acoustic riff is accompanied by a nice electric lead before breaking into a mid-tempo verse. The pre-chorus is alright, leading into a pleasant chorus that doesn’t soar quite as high as it thinks it does. Another round of verse through chorus, then we break into a somewhat cringey a capella group vocal before George busts into a fat riff for a harder bridge. This returns to the chorus, then closes things out with an extended outro with some sweet soloing. Pretty good, but with some weaker parts. I’ll round it down to 6/10.
  • Hard Road - Another funky, bluesy riff kicks into a nice bass-driven verse, followed by a decent pre-chorus and solid chorus. Another round of verse through chorus, then a heavier bridge breaks into an OK solo section followed by a better one. A softer chorus variant cuts back into the full chorus before a quick denouement. Solid stuff. 7/10.
  • Alive Today - Some cool descending guitar work breaks into a bright riff with some grungier descending lead accompaniment. A solid verse leads into an uplifting pre-chorus and a pretty good chorus that almost soars. Another round of verse through chorus, then we get a hint of a second chorus before an interlude with some cool noodling. A short breakdown and then we return to a great up-modulated chorus 1 and 2 that finally takes flight. Mason does vocal riffing over an intro and verse reprise before finishing off on a noodly outro. About half of this is great, and the rest is very good. I’ll round it up to an 8/10.
  • Line Of Division - A heavy, bluesy riff breaks into a groovy mid-tempo verse with tradeoff vocals. A brief pre-chorus leads into a catchy verse. Another run through the verse, pre-chorus, and chorus, and then we get a great vocal bridge and a bright solo. This breaks into a funky, bluesy interlude with vocal riffing before returning to the chorus. This cuts into an unexpectedly melodic outro with nice backing vocals. Good stuff, a robust 7/10.
  • Sleeping Voices - A melancholy lead with acoustic backing breaks into a country-twinged soft verse. This cuts into a so-so pre-chorus and a strong, heavy chorus. Another verse leads into an alternate version of the pre-chorus that works a lot better, returning to the chorus. This breaks into an alternate softer chorus with piano that gets heavier again before leading into a softer solo interlude reminiscent of “Tierra Del Fuego” from George’s Sacred Groove. This cuts into an extended solo on top of the chorus instrumentation that folds back into the chorus itself before ending on a heavier extended reprise of the solo interlude. Some really great parts here, and most of the rest is very good. I’ll round this one up to 8/10 as well.
  • Life Is Love Is Music - Another heavy, bluesy riff leads into an uptempo verse and a solid melodic pre-chorus and a decent chorus. The lyrics are a bit dumb, but what are you gonna do. Another round of verse through chorus leads into an extended melodic interlude followed by an OK bridge and some bluesy soloing. A final chorus reprise leads into a brief outro to close the album. An OK-to-good track with some weaker elements. 6/10.
Album Average: 6.5/10

As I mentioned before, this is a mixed bag with some strong tracks and some filler, but most of it is OK to good. I enjoy the album overall, but I know what these guys are capable of, and they can definitely do better.
 

Collin

Chasing Ponce De Leon's Phantoms
The End Machine - The End Machine
  • Leap Of Faith - A cool tapping intro breaks into a mid-paced bluesy groove. The verse is OK, the pre-chorus is a little brighter, and the chorus is solid with a great ending vocal line by Mason. A noodly interlude leads into a cool solo, with an intro reprise bringing us back to the chorus and a funky extended outro. Solid stuff. 7/10.
  • Hold Me Down - A spooky guitar intro breaks into a driving, blues-tinged riff that calms down a bit for a strong, uptempo verse. An OK pre-chorus leads into a solid, catchy chorus with nice tradeoff vocals. Another round of verse through chorus, then we break into an extended multi-part interlude with a darker feel. This cuts back into the pre-chorus and chorus, and a final outro section with vocals to close things out. Very solid rocker, a robust 7/10.
  • No Game - A bluesy mid-tempo intro gets some nice lead work before breaking into a smooth arpeggiated verse and a multi-part pre-chorus. The chorus is reasonably catchy and Dokken-esque, but I don’t like the repetitive guitar accent in the background, and it just feels a bit lacking overall. A brief clean interlude leads back into an abbreviated verse and more pre-chorus and chorus. Another interlude breaks into some great soloing, leading back into the clean section and a spoken-word bridge. A scream kicks back into the chorus before a quick wrap-up. This song has some nice bits and some weaker bits, but I think I’d round it down to 6/10.
  • Bulletproof - A clean bluesy intro blossoms into a fuller riff that leads into a so-so verse and a nicer pre-chorus. Ugh, WTF is with this anemic chorus? It’s a total snoozefest. More weak verse, good pre-chorus, and insipid chorus, before breaking into a nice clean interlude, a decent bridge, and a sweet extended solo. Ugh, back to that lame chorus again to close things out. The nicer bits can’t save this one from a 5/10.
  • Ride It - A heavy, driving riff kicks things off nicely, breaking into a decent verse. The pre-chorus has some half-spoken vocals with odd vocal harmonies, and then...WTF is with this chorus? “Ride it!”, wah, wah, “Drive it!”, wah, wah...blecch. Another round of this nonsense and then we get a pretty great extended solo section, and an ascending break that leads into a sweet acoustic interlude before returning to that turgid chorus and a merciful outro. There’s almost half of a good song here, but the rest is...ew. 4/10.
  • Burn The Truth - A bluesy acoustic riff is accompanied by a nice electric lead before breaking into a mid-tempo verse. The pre-chorus is alright, leading into a pleasant chorus that doesn’t soar quite as high as it thinks it does. Another round of verse through chorus, then we break into a somewhat cringey a capella group vocal before George busts into a fat riff for a harder bridge. This returns to the chorus, then closes things out with an extended outro with some sweet soloing. Pretty good, but with some weaker parts. I’ll round it down to 6/10.
  • Hard Road - Another funky, bluesy riff kicks into a nice bass-driven verse, followed by a decent pre-chorus and solid chorus. Another round of verse through chorus, then a heavier bridge breaks into an OK solo section followed by a better one. A softer chorus variant cuts back into the full chorus before a quick denouement. Solid stuff. 7/10.
  • Alive Today - Some cool descending guitar work breaks into a bright riff with some grungier descending lead accompaniment. A solid verse leads into an uplifting pre-chorus and a pretty good chorus that almost soars. Another round of verse through chorus, then we get a hint of a second chorus before an interlude with some cool noodling. A short breakdown and then we return to a great up-modulated chorus 1 and 2 that finally takes flight. Mason does vocal riffing over an intro and verse reprise before finishing off on a noodly outro. About half of this is great, and the rest is very good. I’ll round it up to an 8/10.
  • Line Of Division - A heavy, bluesy riff breaks into a groovy mid-tempo verse with tradeoff vocals. A brief pre-chorus leads into a catchy verse. Another run through the verse, pre-chorus, and chorus, and then we get a great vocal bridge and a bright solo. This breaks into a funky, bluesy interlude with vocal riffing before returning to the chorus. This cuts into an unexpectedly melodic outro with nice backing vocals. Good stuff, a robust 7/10.
  • Sleeping Voices - A melancholy lead with acoustic backing breaks into a country-twinged soft verse. This cuts into a so-so pre-chorus and a strong, heavy chorus. Another verse leads into an alternate version of the pre-chorus that works a lot better, returning to the chorus. This breaks into an alternate softer chorus with piano that gets heavier again before leading into a softer solo interlude reminiscent of “Tierra Del Fuego” from George’s Sacred Groove. This cuts into an extended solo on top of the chorus instrumentation that folds back into the chorus itself before ending on a heavier extended reprise of the solo interlude. Some really great parts here, and most of the rest is very good. I’ll round this one up to 8/10 as well.
  • Life Is Love Is Music - Another heavy, bluesy riff leads into an uptempo verse and a solid melodic pre-chorus and a decent chorus. The lyrics are a bit dumb, but what are you gonna do. Another round of verse through chorus leads into an extended melodic interlude followed by an OK bridge and some bluesy soloing. A final chorus reprise leads into a brief outro to close the album. An OK-to-good track with some weaker elements. 6/10.
Album Average: 6.5/10

As I mentioned before, this is a mixed bag with some strong tracks and some filler, but most of it is OK to good. I enjoy the album overall, but I know what these guys are capable of, and they can definitely do better.
Are you starting your 13 albums in one year list?
 

Jer

Fuddy Buddy
How long does it take for you to listen to a single album?
I think that question answers itself. But if I’m typing up thoughts it probably takes 1.5-2x as long as just listening to the album.

It’s just a matter of limited free time and not a ton of interest in forcing myself to listen to a bunch of random albums, rather than stuff I would be more naturally interested in. I only pick up a few albums a year these days, though I will listen around to random tracks if something seems like it might be interesting to me.
 

terrell39

Ancient Mariner
Saw The End Machine last night in Tucson and had a great time! First let me share my tale of how I got there: tried to fly from Houston to Tucson; just prior to boarding the flight is canceled due to bad weather! All other flights to Tucson are sold out so I book the next available flight to Phoenix (only 2 hour drive to Tucson). But then it keeps getting delayed due to weather. As my time to make it to the show on time gets slimmer, I finally end up waiting in the airport 7 hours before the plane finally leaves the gate...only to need a tire changed! Then after fixing that, we wait on the runway for 90 minutes in line for takeoff! Finally land in Phoenix about 5:00. The show is advertised as an "early show; doors open 6:00; opening band starts @7:00". 3 1/2 hours later (after waiting for baggage, shuttle to get rental car, stopping for drive thru, etc) I finally reach the club about 8:15 thinking I have missed the first few songs...only to find everything is behind schedule and the opening band is still on! YES!!!

Of the 3 shows, the opening band (a cover band called Drop D), stated Tucson was the biggest turnout (I'd say the club was 60% full). Bought a shirt; on the back it says "World Domination tour; well 3 cities at least"!

Was the same setlist as the opening night in L.A. They played a mix of new stuff, Dokken, & Lynch Mob. After hearing Jeff & Robert on Eddie Trunk state that the entire band claims Burn the Truth as their favorite new track, I was shocked they didn't play it. The reasons for the Queen cover for the encore is 1. Lynch Mob covered it on the 1st cd with Robert & 2. From stage last night they claim to "really like this song"; it got a great reaction from the audience as well.

Every member was spot on last night! Robert sounded amazing (especially considering this was his 4th show in a row because he played a Warrant gig in between the Vegas & Tucson TEM shows)! Jeff was a human Energizer Bunny who kept pumping the crowd up! George, as usual, was laid back...but so what; GOD that man can shred!!!

Glad I got to experience them live because it might not happen again (at least for a while with their busy schedules in Foreigner, Warrant, Lynch Mob, & Dokken).

https://www.setlist.fm/setlist/the-end-machine/2019/club-xs-tucson-az-5393dba1.html

https://photos.app.goo.gl/yPoMbW8vLsuMb1Sa9
 

Maturin

Sköldpadda
Dokken is one of my favourite bands next to Maiden but Don Dokken is my favourite singer. Great vocals, and the best vibrato in the business. Could go from super soft ballads to flat out metal but excelled at the soft and melodic. I like George Lynch as much as everybody else, but he's not the best thing about Dokken. While hardly replaceable and definitely missed, Don at least produced some awesome songs without Lynch whereas the only other fantastic Lynch-project I can think of is Sweet & Lynch - which is 90% Michael Sweet anyway. Up From the Ashes is almost as good as the golden era Dokken material.

One of my favourite Dokken song is actually from Hell to Pay from 2004 with Jon Levin on guitar.

 

terrell39

Ancient Mariner
I saw Dokken live for the first time opening for Judas Priest on UL&K tour (during Priest Turbo tour). They were great! Then on BFTA tour, I saw Dokken open up for Aerosmith on their Permanent Vacation tour. I thought Heaven Sent was a weak song for an opening band to play. They could have chosen 1 of so many other harder songs instead.

But then they redeemed themselves on the same tour when I saw them on the Monsters of Rock tour opening for the Scorpions and Van Hagar 2 shows in a row (Houston & Dallas). In Houston they surprised me with Turn On the Action and in Dallas with Breaking the Chains! These were also the longest sets I had seen Dokken play so far.

Then saw them in the 90s opening for Alice Cooper. Very disappointed with setlist being all 80s standards with almost no newer material.

Then fast forward to 2014 and I see Dokken for free on the Empire tour. 1st of all, they played nothing from the new cd! But more importantly, Don sounded like SHIT!! He basically spoke instead of sang (like a Jim Morrison wanna be). He was so bad, the club started full, but by halfway into the set, was half empty.

At least his guitarist and bassist were great! The bassist's backing vocals SAVED the show; he should have been singing lead! Imagine my surprise when the tour ended and Don fired him just because he didn't use a pick!? Dokken's loss was Lynch Mob's gain; I saw LW live few months ago and he did fine.

Thank GOD for Robert Mason. He is singing live the way Don should be.

https://www.setlist.fm/setlist/dokken/1986/the-summit-houston-tx-4bd8abca.html

https://www.setlist.fm/setlist/dokken/1988/the-summit-houston-tx-5bd8abd4.html

https://www.setlist.fm/setlist/dokken/1988/rice-stadium-houston-tx-6bd2b696.html

https://www.setlist.fm/setlist/dokken/1988/cotton-bowl-dallas-tx-73d44ea1.html

https://www.setlist.fm/setlist/dokken/2014/warehouse-live-houston-tx-73c1b2cd.html
 
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