Warrant – Dog Eat Dog (1992, Columbia Records)
1. “Machine Gun” … 3:45
2. “The Hole in My Wall” … 3:30
3. “April 2031” … 5:05
4. “Andy Warhol Was Right” … 3:37
5. “Bonfire” … 4:21
6. “The Bitter Pill” … 4:07
7. “Hollywood (So Far, So Good)” … 3:47
8. “All My Bridges Are Burning” … 3:37
9. “Quicksand” … 3:58
10. “Let It Rain” … 4:16
11. “Inside Out” … 3:40
12. “Sad Theresa” … 3:25
Jani Lane – Lead Vocals, Acoustic Guitar
Joey Allen – Guitar
Erik Turner – Guitar
Jerry Dixon – Bass
Steven Sweet – Drums, Backing Vocals
Scott Humphrey – Keyboards
Ron Feldman & Scott Warren – Piano
Dee Dee Bellson & Yvonne Williams – Backing Vocals (“Let It Rain”)
Producer: Michael Wagener
And this is where Warrant started to get a bit heavier as the ’90s rolled on. Janie & Co. must have seen the writing on the wall by this point with the rise of grunge and tried to develop a tougher sound and image while still not straying too far from the pop-metal that made them so successful. Must’ve worked because while radio didn’t support this album it still managed to go gold. Funny thing, while bands these days would kill to go gold, back then for a multi-platinum act, having a gold album was considered a disappointment, at least as far as the labels were concerned. Sure enough, Warrant found themselves dropped from Columbia after having “only” sold in excess of 500,000 copies of Dog Eat Dog. To me, that’s pretty impressive for a Warrant album in 1992 when Alice In Chains, Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Soundgarden and Nirvana were dominating the charts.
Anyway, Dog Eat Dog serves every sale it got because it’s a really strong album. I still prefer the pop-metal of Cherry Pie but the band does a fine job of delivering a similar slice of hair rock with “The Bitter Pill”, “Quicksand”, “Let It Rain”, “All My Bridges Are Burning” while going more metal than they ever had before with “Machine Gun”, “Inside Out”, “Hole In My Wall” and “April 2031”. Meanwhile, I can’t help but think “Hollywood (So Far, So Good)” sounds like a re-working of Jane’s Addiction’s “Jane Says”. Perhaps it should be have called “Jani Says”?
I have to point out the album’s best track — the ballad “Let It Rain”. Before I discovered this album, I discovered this song. I was searching online years ago and found a site that listed every Warrant ballad and thought this song was amazing when I first heard it. Still do. Had this been on Cherry Pie and had it been released as a single, it could’ve been huge. One of the genre’s best ballads but then again that’s almost a formality when it comes to ballads written by Jani!
The photos of the band around this time are pretty funny. All the white spandex and glitter, neon colors and ruffles and what have you are gone. It’s all been replaced by black leather. Jane Lane actually looks A LOT like Dee Snider with the black leather pants, black leather vest, shades and his bleach blond hair pulled back tight in a ponytail. And Joey Allen and Erik Turner look to be doing their best KK Downing and Glenn Tipton impersonations with the leather studded jackets.
The band would stumble for direction over the next decade and then find some redemption with 2006’s Born Again but Dog Eat Dog remains Warrant’s last great album.
Highlights: “Machine Gun”, “The Hole In My Wall”, “Andy Warhol Was Right”, “The Bitter Pill”, “All My Bridges Burning”, “Quicksand”, “Let It Rain”