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Trixter Talk

Were the guys in Trixter victims of grunge...or a confused Glam image?

I don't talk about Trixter much. I actually quite like them – and they are awesome live. But when their name pops up on festival rosters, people always laugh. And by people, I mean Glam fans...basically you.

Why is that?

You guys are loyal to the death over the bands we love here. If a classic Glam band releases a song that I don't like and I give it a bad review, there is usually hell to pay.

But not so with Trixter.

I've written that Trixter were awesome at both Rocklahoma and M3. The running joke, then, is that God hates Trixter and that's why He (She?) tried to kill us with a massive storm at Rocklahoma 2008. So what did Trixter do that upset so many of you? Was it the flannel? I'll agree, the flannel wasn't a great idea – but they tried! I remember watching old school MTV and seeing Trixter vids mixed in with the other metal bands and they definitely stood out...because their look didn't match their sound.

Was it that Trixter was just not Glam enough? Just because you have long hair doesn't make you a Glam band, yes? You need a little crunch to the guitars...oh and the guitarist better be amazing, too.

Was it that “Give It To Me Good” was just too pop? Honestly, when I heard the song on the radio back when it was new, I just figured it was a pop band...until I saw the video.

So what is it? What hurt Trixter? What should the band members have done differently to cement their rock – Glam – cred?

Reader Comments (23)

I saw Trixter this year in Cleveland at a Memorial Day show with LA Guns (Phil Lewis version), Dokken, and Danger Danger. Back in the early '90s, I was a casual Trixter fan. I think the thing that bothered me most is the way they were packaged and marketed - they were supposedly "high school" kids and they showed up on the scene towards the end of glam's heyday. When I saw them live, it was pretty obvious they were as old as I was (I was in college at the time) and they were using pre-recorded backing tracks (um, unless their keyboard player was hiding backstage). That all being said, when I saw them this year, I thought they were great, probably the biggest surprise on the show I saw them play. I wrote about them here:
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterchip
Hate to say it, but I was surprised at how tight and what pros these guys were when I saw 'em at M3, but they still suck as far as I'm concerned. No tunes! No personality! Total borefest!

p.s There! Is this post short and sweet enuff, for ya, Bigjerk?! Sheeez!
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
I was a casual fan back when the first two albums came out. But the sound and the tunes just don't hold up well. Sonically they are very thin. They really could have used another guitar player. I know they were trying to pull the Van Halen 4 member / party band thing but they just couldn't fill out the sound. I kind of liked the image at the time but I think the sound wasn't something guys could really get into. Girls buy records but guys go to the shows and that's where you get your "cred".
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTenwatt
Their first album was really good, the 2nd album BLEW. Their covers EP was actually very good too. And the side-project of theirs '40 ft Ringo' was AMAZING!!!! I want to see these guys live at some point, but the clips I saw of them from Rocklahoma and M3 were AWFUL.
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKenny Ozz
I always have and always will LOVE Trixter. I really don't give a sh!t what anyone says about them, and I really don't care if people make fun of me for listening to them. I saw them open up for the Scorpions back in the day (it was my first rock concert) and they were great!

I'll admit, they were never on the road to legendary status, but they were a good, fun band with catchy tunes. Listening to them now...maybe they were a little cheesy, but who wasn't? Maybe their image was off. Maybe they hit the scene too late and grunge destroyed them. I'm sure everyone has their opinion on that. But as far as I'm concerned, Trixter f-ing rocks and I'm stoked they're still around making music.
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChristine Sixx
Okay, cuz of the defenders of Trixter on here, I went back into my small cadre of Trixter tunes on my iTunes. I've got "One In A Million" (which to me is their best song) on my "Love Roxx" A-List Playlist of Power Ballads and Mushy and Sappy Songs (where I've got nearly everyone represented, even Ugly Kid Joe, "Cat's In The Cradle" cover, argh!) in the interest of having the most complete showing of all the bands as I can stand on it.

I've got "Give It To Me Good", their sole hit on my iTunes but have never been able to bring myself to park it on any of my playlists. Argh! Gawd, that song royally suxx!!!

Seriously, for me, this song may constitute being "THE WORST HAIR METAL SONG", in my book, even more horrible than Ugly Kid Joe's "Everything About You" and Jackyl's two fer of annoyingness, "I Stand Alone" (a song that actually starts out great but then annoyingly veers into that weirdly unfortunate Funk/Hick hybrid territory during the chorus, argh!) and "Dirty Little Mind" (so annoying! Ugh!).

The rest of the stuff I have is on some of my B-List Power Ballad lists -- songs like "Surrender" (can't they even come up with their own song titles -- Huh-uh-lo-oh!), "You'll Never See Me Cryin'", etc.

I've also got their cover of AC/DC's "Dirty Deeds" on my A-List Harder Rockin' Glam/Heavy Metal Playlist, "Heavy Roxx", as I couldn't bring myself to put on one of their "Harder Rockin'" tunes, such as "Rockin' Horse" or "Bloodrock" from 1992's "Hear", their sophomore album.

Fact is, IMHO, they fail to ROCK. Even their version of "Dirty Deeds" is "thin" as Tenwatt would certainly describe it. Listen to it and see for yourself. They can't even scream the ending right. Sorry, though musically competent, they just lack b*lls, pardon the expression, Christine and any of the other Lady Glametallerz who might happen to be bored enuff to read this.

I even feel like that "Uncovered" album Kenny O speaks of, which their "Dirty Deeds" is from, reeks of C.O.F., as in "Contract Obligation Fullfillment". It came out in 1995, pretty much when the game was way over for bands like this, as well as all of our faves, unfortunately (IMHO, it really wasn't until 1999 when Buckcherry singlehandedly revived Glam Metal for us with "Lit Up").

Anyway, a cover album is always a quick way to put something out and it smells of C.O.F. with it's halfhearted delivery of cover songs they probably picked with their eyes closed.

Amd that's just what bugs me about this band... They have a false sense of bravado with absolutely no reason to back it up. I think the lead guitar work and the musicianship is competent. Even the singer has a half decent voice. But their ideas and creativity is virtually nil.

Just for sh*ts and giggles, here's the iTunes synopsis of their 1990 debut. I don't have to be the only one cruelly laughing at these guys. Here's what Apple's stance on them is:

"In the late '80s early '90s, MCA Records wasn't as commercially successful in rock as it was in urban contemporary, and sought to remedy that by signing an abundance of hard rock bands. While a few had potential (including Sweet F.A.), most were formula-driven and painfully generic. One embarrassing example is Paramus, NJ's Trixter, whose songs were along the lines of another Jersey band, Bon Jovi, but not nearly as memorable. The fact that this self-titled debut did enjoy some airplay on album-rock stations certainly wasn't due to originality. Forgettable and pedestrian, songs like "Bad Girl", "Play Rough" and "One In A Million" exemplify MCA's formulaic, assembly-line approach to "corporate" hard rock at the dawn of the 90's. With the rise of alternative rock a few years later, Trixter would be all but forgotten."

Couldn't have said it better myself.
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
It's simple. Trixter were percieved to be a bunch of kids that were put together and made a band by the record company. At the time they came out, they were percieved as a glam Milli Vanilli.
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChristian
Christian! I couldn't have said THAT better myself!

p.s. You going on Shiprocked?
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
I like Trixter. I am not afraid to admit it. Not a huge fan of their discs, but they have blown me away a couple of times live. I actually thought they had lost it at Melodic Rock Fest in Chicago, but they won me back over at the Memorial Day show in Cleveland.

Metalboy- I knew you wouldn't leave it at that short post. You think you have such important things to say, that your comments are 5-10 times longer than the article itself. You got personal. I just said that I didn't read your post, because it was too long. I guess it just bothered you to think that one person isn't out there hanging on every amazing word you have to type.
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbiggeok
You're right, Dude. You have every right not to read my comments, obviously. But I'll always read yours no matter how long or short they are because I'm interested in what you have to say, especially since you are the one who made a negative comment about my comments first...
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
I'm going to say this one more time & I hope it squashes this. I DID NOT make a negative comment on your post. I said it was too long & I didn't read it, referencing the fact that I may repeat something that you already said. Too long isn't necessarily your fault. I like comments short & to the point. That is my preference. You like to write long comments. That is your prerogative, as it is mine not to read them. At no point did I say "You are a jerk. Nobody cares about your opinion.", or anything like that. You are the one who got personal & I didn't respond, hoping that would be the end of it. Days later, you bring it up again & refer to me as Bigjerk. I hope this clarification works for you, because I'm done talking about it.
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbiggeok
They are just a bad band?
I mean I don't care about how they look or something like that but if the music is bad why bother?
There is so much good glam/rock/pop/metal out there, why bother with one of the worst?
September 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLiam
"Too long as usual" sounds negative to me, pal...

And Liam you are right!

Trixter is absolutely one of the WORST!

Ugh! Is there such a thing as Metal Mediocrity? If so, this is it!
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKEVON
Trixter looked & sounded glam, but they never felt legit to me. Like Christian mentioned above, they felt like a record company bubblegum-glam invention in order to get a couple of hits on the radio.

Not to mention that when they came out, glam metal was already on the downswing, so even if they were awesome, it probably would have been too little too late.
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBryon
For what it's worth, I can confirm that the guys in Trixter were several years older than their label claimed they were at the time. I grew up in Jersey, and a good friend of mine went to Paramus High School with them. Now, that said, I don't think you can really blame Trixter for how their label chose to market them. I don't much care for their music, but I think they take a lot of crap that they don't deserve.
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBob
Yes they do, Bob. Narry a hook, lick or riff to be found on any of their sh*t. They had the chops but didn't have the songs. They were and still are so UNROCK!
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
As devoted glam metal fans, we forego the right to judge a band as generic or lacking in talent or any of the criticisms above that are levelled at Trixter. I love glam to death, but the minute one starts critically assessing it....I mean come on. None of these bands are Zeppelin are they?
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterahappypunk
Trixter. Ah, memories. "Give It to Me Good" was a guilty pleasure of mine in 1990/91 -- and that date should give the lie to the idea that they were grabbing at a bit of the grunge phenomenon with the flannel in the vid. Grunge was 1-2 years away when Trixter first hit.

That said, other comments here are spot-on. Whatever they might sound like live in the here and now, back then, on record, they were poppy and thin-sounding, and they definitely seemed just a touch too manufactured to be even cartoonishly dangerous, like most of the more successful glam-rock bands. If they really hit it that well as a live act, maybe the blame can be laid on piss-poor production, and given that their label was MCA, that might even be right. Criminy, even their first album's _cover_ sucked, so as product they weren't primed to fly off the shelves from the get-go or anything.
September 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterM.
Hey, I'll give them one thing...

They're name...


Great name...

And, except for a handful of songs that I listed in my original first comments entry, they blow big time.

Happy Punk! No, none of the bands from that era are on the level of Zeppelin. Who from any era is on the level of Zeppelin. Hardly anyone, if anyone.

Here's a list of Glam Metal Bands that just plain annihilate Trixter and most any band of that ilk (i.e. generic hookless cornball edgeless milk toast Dumb Metal):

Ana Black, Motley, Crue, Ratt, Kix, L.A. Guns, G'n'R, Britny Fox, Bullet Boys, Junkyard, Danger Danger, K.K. Wilde, Kidd Wikkidd, Sleez Beez, Sweet Cheater, Pretty Boy Floyd, Cinderella, Slaughter, Quiet Riot, Julliet, Brunette, St. Valentine, Evenrude, Dangerous Toys, Sic Vikki, King Kobra, Beau Nasty, Bang Gang, Autograph, Babe Blu, Shy, Faster Pussycat, Electric Boys, Tora Tora, Roulette, McCauley Schenker, Cold Sweat, Mr. Meana, Sweet Lips, Black Rose, Roughhouse, Keel, Tuff, Great King Rat, Shake City, Southgang, Valentine, Dokken, Bang Tango, Love Child, Shy, Vain, Firehouse, Steelheart, Dirty Looks, Taz, Sgt Roxx, Vamp, Maximum, Concrete Jungle, Lorraine, Pound of Flesh, Helter Skelter, Skid Row, Chain Gang, Treat, Lion, Masquerade, Pole Position, Dirty Blonde, White Lion, Roxx, D'Molls, Britton, D.A.D., Noize Toyz, Mae West, Cleavage, Shanghai, Fashion Police, The Cult, Heaven's Edge, Hericane Alice, Vice, Kinki Stunt, Four Horsemen, Icon, Jailhouse, Lancia, TNT, Sha-Boom, Mr. Scary, Melidian, Bai Bang, Alien, Eyes, Mad Max, Ruckus, Wickid Kin, Fastway, Nitro, Unruly Child, Roxy Blue, Heavy Pettin', Angelheart, Billionaire Boys Club, Boysvoice, Casanova, Priscilla, Schoolboy Crush, Foxy Roxx, Kid Blue, Tryx, Kid Cyote, Fifth Avenue, Vaudville, Badboyzz, XX Bad Boy, Aleister Crowley, Lillian Axe, Blu Blud, Brass Kitten, Joker, XL, Tesla, Zaza, The Cult, Rough Cutt, Vixen, Lita Ford, Fate, Barracuda, Bangalore Choir, Blonz, Cry Tuff, Dead Bang, Zebra, Victory, etc., etc., etc... To name but a few, karpal tunnel syndrome was beginning to set in (but not enuff for Bigjock, apparently, hahaha!!!)

So, while not bothering to even acknowledge the existence of Trixter is something worth talking about, these bands sure as hell are worth it. They blow Trixter and all of their ilk clean out of the liquid mercury!

Hell, even other Bubble Gum Glam Metal acts like Nelson, Blue Tears, Mr. Big, Jail House, etc. run circles around these clowns, Trixter.

Hey, maybe their name, Trixter refers to the fact that it was all a dirty trick played on the mass Pop Metal buying public by the band and MCA...

p.s. Where oh where is Fletch? We need his opinion on these clowns!
September 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!

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