I really like Come Out And Play. I remember lying in bed, staring at the album back art, reading the lyrics and singing the songs as they played on the turntable. I remember the day I purchased the album, going into my parents room, finding my mums purse and taking $20 out to buy the album. The actual album was $10, so I knew that I was going to come back with two albums. Going through the hard rock/metal section, I decided on Twisted Sister, Come Out and Play and Motley Crue, Theatre Of Pain. When I came home, mum was far from impressed to find $20 missing. My dad, who I feared more, understood me. He was a musician as well.
Coming into the Come Out And Play period, Twisted Sister was coming off the Stay Hungry juggernaut.
The first big change was the producer. Gone was Tom Werman and in came Dieter Dierks. Tom Werman was the go to producer back then. He was achieving multi-platinum sales with the majority of his releases between 1983 and 1989. In addition, Werman also contributed unofficially to the songs arrangements and melodies. So in comes Dieter Dierks from Scorpions fame.
Come Out And Play was released in 1985. By now Twisted Sister was on an album per year cycle, with Ruff Cutts and the first independent release of Under The Blade coming out in 1981, then the major label release of Under The Blade in 1982, then You Can’t Stop Rock N Roll in 1983 and Stay Hungry in 1984. You can tell the band was starting to burn out. To lead off with Leader Of The Pack as the first single, was an act of desperation. It was seen as the band recycling the past. It failed.
Come Out And Play kicks off with bottles clashing together. It is an ode to one of my favourite movies, The Warriors. Instead of the chant, “Warriors, Come Out And Play”, we get “Twisted Sister, Come Out and Play”. Brilliant. The connection is made for me.
Join our cavalcade
Enter the world you made
The cavalcade is the SMF army of Twisted Sister. This is the Twisted Sister world, that we the fans made.
A place where fallacy
We’ll spin you head around
We’re programmed to astound, stand by
Prepare to fly
Oh, welcome to our show
Oh, welcome to our life
Much in the same vein as other Twisted Sister anthems, this is all about the rock n roll show. The concert experience. The place where fallacy becomes reality. The place where the band does what we want them to do and that is to play, to put on a show. You can say that Dee already wrote this song, in What You Don’t Know (Sure Can Hurt You), however he did it better this time around and in my view even better with Wake Up (The Sleeping Giant). AJ Pero is the unsung hero in this song. The pedestrian riffs are balanced by the frenetic drumming and it works.
I Believe In Rock ‘N’ Roll
What a great tongue and cheek song. Dee merges the marriage oath (Do you take this music, to be your lawfully wedded rock, to have and hold in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, for better or for worse, together until death comes to yourself?) with allegiance (I pledge allegiance to the flag, of the united states of rock, and to the point of view for which it stands, one music under one god, yes, even god loves rock ‘n’ roll, with liberty and justice for all lands) to come up with a new creed, “Belief In Rock N Roll.”
I work so hard
I’m dealt the cards
I’m told exactly what to do
I lose control
I rock ‘n’ roll
It’s gonna help to see me through
I believe in rock ‘n’ roll
Has life changed for the working class man since 1985? We still work hard every day, we still deal with the hand we are given, we still do what we are told to do and we still look forward to the weekend where we can rock n roll and relax. Praise the lord, I believe.
The Fire Still Burns
By far the best song on Come Out and Play and in my view, one of the best songs Dee Snider has written. Extreme Metal bands have even covered this song.
Get out of my way
I’m the hangman today
And the judge and jury
The victim and the punisher. The Yin and the yang. The constant battle we have in life. We are happy, and we are sad. We laugh and we cry. In the end, the ones that make it through have that fire that burns forever.
King Of The Fools is a bonus track on the CD version and on the Tape version. It is a classic.
Look around me all I see
Thousands of faces wanting me
How can I lead?
How can I rule?
When I’m the king of the fools
It’s almost like Dee is regretful at his fame. The song is a continuation from The Price, where Dee tries to capture life on the road and how it is a price he needs to pay for success. Of course, the prices is time away from family and loved ones. Doubt is everywhere. Conflict is everywhere. You want to be on the road, you want to play shows, yet you don’t want to be away from your family. You are travelling from town to town, with people that you realise you don’t really like anymore, however you can’t stop. The call of the road and music is too great to resist.
The outside world can’t understand
Just who we are or what I am
Well, we don’t want their life or rules
I’ll be the king, king of the fools
Again, it’s the us (the SMF’s) vs them (The Mainstream) mentality. It’s the expectations of society vs the dreams of youth. We have different viewpoints, we have different needs so we are seen as fools by the mainstream. If the mainstream sees us as fools, then Dee is our King.