My older brothers had a friend called Greeny. He had funds and he liked metal and rock music. It was from his car stereo I heard bands like Cinderella, Great White, Leatherwolf and Bonfire for the first time.
I really got into this band. I thought they would be the next big thing. But they didn’t get there. Not for a lack of trying.
And it pisses me off that these two albums are not on Spotify Australia.
Released in 1987.
There isn’t a bad track on this album. Maybe when it came to the charts and the hearts and minds of consumers, its many years too late in sound and style, as the public by 1987 was hooked on Jovi, Van Halen, U2, Motley Crue, Whitesnake, GNR and soon, Metallica.
And then you get the Bonfire sound, which is rooted in melodic heavy metal circa 1982 to 1985.
The album tracks are written by vocalist Claus Lessmann, guitarists Hans Ziller and Horst Maier and bassist Jörg Deisinger.
“Ready 4 Reaction” is the opening track and it blasts out of the speakers. “Never Mind” continues the melodic rock. “Sleeping All Alone” is an attempt to hit the charts as Jack Ponti and Joe Lynn Turner have a co-write. It didn’t chart, however it’s a good song.
“Sweet Obsession” also has Joe Lynn Turner and Jack Ponti as co-writers. I got the single and then I couldn’t find the album for years. So I dubbed it.The current version of the band doing the rounds these days always reference this album in the live arena and they totally ignore the follow up.
Released in 1989.
A big shift in personnel happened on this album with founder Hans Ziller being fired even though the album features his music. And before Ziller was fired, guitarist Horst Maier-Thorn was also let go.
Desmond Child was brought in. Bob Halligan Jnr was brought in and Jack Ponti was brought back. Desmond Child even recovered the song “The Price Of Loving You” for his own solo album, that’s how high he held it.
Even Michael Wagener was hired to produce. It was an all assault to get the music buying public into the band.
And the album did nothing.
There was no promo in Australia for it and a little paragraph in the Metal Edge magazine many months after it was released tipped me off.
Like the debut, the album sound was out of date by a few years. By 1989, the tastes and sounds morphed even more. This album would have done great if it was released in 1987.
Acoustic/Unplugged was becoming a thing and the Blues had come back into the sounds of rock and metal with bands going back to their roots.
Of course, Motley Crue released a thunderous sounding album dripping with groove and GNR was still riding the wave of their punk boogie oriented debut album, furnished with an EP of acoustic songs.
And somewhere in between Bonfire sat, without one of its founding members.