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Review: "Up From the Ashes" Hard Rock Featuring the Vocals of Don Dokken

Ara is a journalism graduate from California State University, Northridge, who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.

The album cover for "Up From the Ashes"


"Up From the Ashes" Songs List

  1. Crash ‘N’ Burn
  2. 1,000 Miles Away
  3. When Some Nights
  4. Forever
  5. Living a Lie
  6. When Love Finds a Fool
  7. Give it Up
  8. Mirror Mirror
  9. Stay
  10. Down in Flames
  11. The Hunger

Why The Album Up From The Ashes Is A Significant Release

Don Dokken, vocalist of American hard rock Dokken released the solo album Up From the Ashes in 1990. With this, he explores a different side of himself while staying with the style that made Dokken famous. For the album, he plays the guitar as well. He recruited an international lineup of musicians. Joining him on guitar is John Norum (Norway), Peter Baltes (bass guitar) who is from Germany, and Mikkey Dee (drums) who is from Sweden. Billy White is the 3rd guitarist on this album. By this time, Don Dokken had established himself as an elite hard rock vocalist and had been a part of albums such as Back for the Attack and Under Lock and Key.

Up From The Ashes: Songs 1-5 Including the Catchy Song Living a Lie

Many of the songs on the album deal with love and relationships. So many albums have covered this topic that it is almost like a cliché. The opening fast song "Crash ‘N’ Burn" is a song about how the mainstream media and strangers try to convince us that they have all the answers. They want you to believe that driving a fast car or having your dream home is going to make you happy. But the reality is that the more material things that we possess, the more that we want and it becomes a never ending cycle that is difficult to escape from. "1,000 Miles Away" is the first of several love songs on this album. It is about a person that sad because his love relationship did not work out. He is 1,000 miles away from his former lover and he is in tears. He wonders if it is too late to bring her back into his life. "Forever" is a song that starts out with some melodic acoustic guitar and the electric guitar riffing comes in. Sometimes, love is one of those feelings that can be blind as the person you thought you could trust ends up running away from you leaving you vulnerable to getting hurt.

It is never too late to bring the love of your life back unless they have departed from this planet. It sounds almost like a cliché to say this but love and romance are two themes that have been covered in rock and heavy metal that getting an accurate count would be next to impossible.

This theme goes into the next song "Living a Lie." This song is about being in a dysfunctional relationship that is based on playing with the other person’s feelings and not being honest about what you want. These kinds of relationships will go nowhere and they must be terminated as soon as possible. Don Dokken does an excellent job with the vocals on this one! Don Dokken does an excellent job with the vocals on this one! Living a Lie also has Don Dokken doing harmony vocals. It is a shame when the relationship with the one we love goes sour because the other person plays with our feelings.

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When Some Nights: A Catchy Song That May Be Overlooked

"When Some Nights" has a catchy riff and you can hear the bass line. Through hard times and everything, you know that you can make it through with the one you love. If you are lonely during some nights, like the song suggests, just give your lover a call. You lose nothing by giving your lover a call during a lonely night, right?

"Living A Lie"

Song #6 Is When Love Finds a Fool

"When Love Finds a Fool" is a slower but melodic song about someone who was foolish to get involved in a relationship with someone that he is now aware was not the right match for him.

The Amazing Song Called "Stay"

Up From The Ashes: The Rest Of The Review And Concluding Thoughts

After the average blues style song "Mirror Mirror," we are treated to one of the best love songs in any genre of music called "Stay." He cannot believe that his relationship is over and she has left him. He tries to convince her to stay because he is really still missing her badly. His love is waiting for her. The part where Don sings “darling, stay” is one of the best vocal parts in the song. The guitar solo is pretty good as well. Next comes the really catchy song "Down in Flames" and once again, the song is about someone that has been badly mistreated in a relationship. Overall, Up From the Ashes is a solid hard rock style album by one of the best American born singers, the great Don Dokken! Recommended for fans of White Lion and Europe.

"Down In Flames"

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2016 Ara Vahanian

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