The Fight

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When Nirvana and Pearl Jam exploded commercially in the early '90s and alternative rock became mainstream, a lot of '80s headbangers fell by the wayside. Pop-metal hair bands (Poison, Warrant) and gothic-themed fantasy metallers (Iron Maiden, King Diamond) both went out of vogue, and in this brave new rock world, the headbangers who were considered cutting edge embraced alternative metal (which could be anything from Ministry to Sevendust to Rage Against the Machine). But Doro is one '80s survivor who has kept plugging away; she isn't headlining Madison Square Garden, but still caters to a loyal group of die-hard fans. Released in 2002, Fight finds a 37-year-old Doro continuing to sound quite assured and passionate. The former Warlock vocalist makes a few alterna-metal-ish moves here and there, especially on the title track and "Descent" (which employs Type O Negative's Peter Steele). But Doro doesn't get nearly as far into alterna-metal as -- just to give one example -- Mötley Crüe graduate Tommy Lee. While Lee made a totally clean break from an '80s-like sound with his Methods of Mayhem project of 1999, Doro hasn't forgotten the '80s. In fact, many of the tunes are fairly '80s-sounding, including "Chained," "Fight By Your Side," and the power ballad "Legends Never Die" (which Kiss' Gene Simmons contributed). And for Doro's longtime fans, that isn't necessarily a bad thing. Those who have been following the German goddess religiously since the '80s will probably take comfort in knowing that even though a few of the tunes make alterna-metal-ish moves, Fight is generally quite faithful to her history. Although 1989's Force Majeure remains Doro's most essential solo album, her hardcore followers will find 2002's Fight to be an inspired, focused, and rewarding addition to her catalog.

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