In the summer 2007 edition (issue 108) of Classic Rock magazine, the editor's provide a tip sheet on buying Van Halen. Most every album the band has ever released is considered at least "good." The album to avoid - according to the editor's - is Van Halen III.
Here's a secret: I don't own Van Halen III, and I'm not certain I've even ever heard one track off this poorly rated album. Of course, this is the only Gary Cherone era release, and I suppose that speaks volumes right there.
Does anyone out there own Van Halen III? Would you leave me a comment and explain why it's either a good or bad release?
In the Classic Rock article, the editor's write "Gary Cherone was that wuss who sang in Extreme - wearing a leotard...Van Halen and Cherone were a disastrous mismatch, and produced just one album - that sold on 500,000 copies, when every other VH album had shifted at least two million. The reason is that Van Halen III stinks like a wet dog. Every song sucks, and Cherone sings them like a drowning man."
Wow. This is not a good review people. I did a little YouTube research, looking for some Cherone-era VH clips. Surprised, I found more than a few.
I'll be honest. I watched a few of the clips, and didn't seem that disheartened with Cherone. Yes, I like Extreme, but he doesn't sound like Extreme while standing next to Eddie Van Halen. In some respects, Cherone sounds like a poor woman's David Lee Roth.
I suppose this in itself is a little creepy.
So, let's compare. Here's Gary Cherone performing "Ain't Talkin' Bout Love" during Van Halen's 1998 world tour.
Now, here's Sammy Hagar performing the same song during a Van Halen tour stop. Judging by the clothes, this is a late 80s or early 90s tour.
Diamond David Lee Roth originally sang the lyrics to "Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love" for Van Halen's massively successful debut album, released way back in 1978. This clip is from the 1984 tour.
So, which is better? You decide.