Burning Cats and Amputees

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By the late '80s, a "third wave" of hair metal bands could be spotted infiltrating MTV, but with a slightly harder edge. Tops on this list would be Skid Row and the Bulletboys. The latter group endured countless comparisons to David Lee Roth-era Van Halen, due to Marq Torien's "likeness" to Diamond Dave, Mick Sweda's Eddie Van Halen-esque guitar work, and their choice of producer, Ted Templeman (who produced all of the Roth-era VH albums). And for a brief, shining moment, the group was "the toast of the Sunset Strip," so to speak, before fading away. Come the early 21st century and nostalgia in the air for the late-'80s/early-'90s hair metal bands, the Bulletboys were back in business, as they re-recorded their best-known tracks -- in a much more raw/straightforward style than the original versions. The resulting album, 2000's interestingly titled Burning Cats and Amputees, mixes anthemic originals "Smooth Up" and "THC Groove" along with a few oddball cover choices that work surprisingly well -- the O'Jays' "For the Love of Money" (included here as just "Money") and Tom Waits' "Hang On St. Christopher" (again, given a truncated title -- "St. Christopher"). While the earlier studio versions are obviously better known, the Bulletboys manage to improve on the originals quite often on Burning Cats.

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