Give him points for persistence: Alice Cooper just won't quit. He's seen it all from the bottom to the top -- and done the trip more than once -- but still continues on his merry-morbid way, punching out albums like a spry young'un. The first thing one has to say about The Eyes of Alice Cooper is thank Jehovah and all his witnesses that the Mascara'd One has grown out of his metal/industrial phase. That look just never took. Discs like Brutal Planet (2000) and the somewhat better Dragontown (2001) offered little to his legacy or his legion of fans -- aside from nascent headbangers discovering the Coop for the first time. Eyes harks back to Alice's overly maligned early-'80s discs Special Forces and Flush the Fashion -- albums that suffered by comparison with his landmark '70s releases but remain far more musically appealing than the aforementioned new-millennium fare. It takes a couple of listens to "get it," but there is some very good material here: largely derivative, yes, but energetic and entertaining nonetheless. And the old sneer-and-wink is back and comes through in lyrics that, unlike the sonics, are distinctive. The punkish "Man of the Year" is a tragicomedy rip on button-down-collar types who climb life's ladder only to end up putting a gun in their mouths. "Novocaine" (the very word brings back memories of Billion Dollar Babies and "Unfinished Sweet") has, believe it, a Bruce Springsteen guitar sound. The best rocker of the pack is "Detroit City," a quasi-anthemic, mid-tempo grunter fuelled by a slapping, tom-tom beat and a fist-pumping chorus. (MC5's Wayne Kramer adds an extra axe on this one.) The classically Cooper-esque ballad "Be With You a While" is another scene-stealer ("I wish I could tell you/Something you didn't know/I wish I could give you/Something you didn't own") and shows that the ol' snake-twirler still has a sensitive side. The most autobiographical moment comes with the second track, "Between High School and Old School." To wit: "I'm stuck somewhere between high school and old school." Ah, but was it not always thus? For more than three decades Alice has been everyone's favorite grown-up in teens' clothing. And that's why he's loved. Alice being Alice. It's tried and true and it works again here. Not exceptionally, but more than acceptably. In the sweeping context of his legendary career, one could say that The Eyes of Alice Cooper is far from his best album and just as far from his worst.
AllMusic Review by Adrian Zupp