Named for a Graham Greene gangster classic (and later a killer Queen song), Brighton Rock comes to rock (apparently it's all they got) on Young, Wild and Free, replete with a Joey Tempest double sporting Judge Dredd pants on the cover. These rock & roll kids even supply the lyrics to their party anthems, except for the last two tracks, whose words are omitted on the cassette foldout for pictures and wardrobe credits. Gerald McGhee lets loose his piercing Cinderella pipes at the onset, and the quartet continually pounds out uptempo Canadian AOR produced to a glossy sheen by metal guru Michael Wagener. Comically catchy, Young, Wild and Free delivers bold, brainless hair, and even the ballads boast syrupy goodness. Of course, the title track has nothing discernible to do with Quiet Riot's "Wild and the Young," just as "Assault Attack" has nothing in common with the great MSG record (they're just two great words that go great together). These Toronto troubadours even contribute to the Priest/Lizzy Ripper legacy with "Jack Is Back." If you crave pyro axes, banshee wails, and sharp hooks, this album isn't a guilty pleasure, but essential listening. Subsequent Brighton Rock recordings may have been heavier, but no way were they this much fun.
Young, Wild and Free Review
by Whitney Z. Gomes