After nearly a decade trying to make it to "The Show," Twisted Sister were finally up to bat. Their first album was a wild swing, their second had flown just barely foul, but with their third -- the unstoppable Stay Hungry -- the New York veterans finally hit one out of the park. And few bands were as deserving. Having paid their dues on the tough as nails N.Y.C. club scene (half of the band looked like the Ramones, the other half like the Dictators, and Dee Snider looked like, well, Dee Snider), Twisted Sister had finally worn down the opposition and truly arrived. With their comedic videos and bubblegum undertones, hit singles "We're Not Gonna Take It" and "I Wanna Rock" helped the band bridge the "beauty gap" into MTV acceptance, and a competent power ballad in "The Price" would cement their consumer-friendly status. But it was the irrefutable menace of tracks like "The Beast," "S.M.F.," and the massive "Burn in Hell" that connected with their loyal fans and displayed Twisted Sister's true power. Equally grim, "Captain Howdy" and "Street Justice" -- the two songs comprising the "Horror-teria" suite (later the basis for Snider's ill-fated movie project Strangeland) -- are a cross between Alice Cooper and its stated source of influence, Stephen King. And don't forget the all-out metal ambition of the title track. Ironically, the album's very mainstream appeal would alienate their core heavy metal fan base and spell the band's overexposure-induced fall from grace, but for this brief moment, Twisted Sister were truly the "talk of the town, top of the heap."
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Eduardo Rivadavia