Sammy Hagar Cosmic Universal Fashion Roadrunner
· Produced By: Sammy Hagar

· Running Time: 44.03

· Release Date: Out Now

· Released:

· Musical Style: Hard Rock

· Links: Sammy Hagar
Songs: 50%
Sound: 80%
I don't think I have to explain my longtime fanboy sentiment held towards Sammy Hagar. I hold him in high esteem and consider a few records featuring his vocals up there with my very best ever - (VH's 5150 and For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge; solo albums I Never Said Goodbye, VOA and Standing Hampton).
But in recent times Sammy has become a bit of a mystery artist – you never quite know what is coming next or what style it will be in. And in some ways Sammy continues to confuse his fan base with this release.
After devoting himself to being the hard rock Jimmy Buffett on Livin' It Up (itself a very fine record if you could handle the style), Sammy returns to hard rock here, but fails to convince with an album that appears almost thrown together.
Not 4 Sale was a loosely recorded set of tunes, but at least had focus. Livin' It Up was the same, but the style wasn't for all.
Sammy at one stage flagged recording a bunch of stand alone tunes, releasing them individually. That's what this album sounds like. And as an old school Hagar fan, it doesn't really work for me. Perhaps it would if all the songs were of stand-out quality, but this is a very mixed bag.
The opening tune – the title track Cosmic Universal Fashion – is horrible. Not a great way to start any album, but a Sammy album featuring a driving programmed beat and some semi-spoken rapping vocals with filtered effects and the like…good grief!
Next up is a change of tact again in the only two Planet Us tunes re-recorded (Sammy's near-project with Neal Schon).
Both Psycho Vertigo (original track Vertigo renamed) and Peephole are true to the original vibe of the Planet Us demos – serious, loose, raw, 70s based groove rockers with a dark and very uncommercial vibe.
Peephole was done better by Soul Sirkus, but the guitar playing here is still intense and Sammy's vocal is amazing.
Then there's another change of style with the straight forward hard rocker Loud, which turns back the clock to the Ten 13 'party rocker' Sammy.
Fight For Your Right To Party continues this party vibe. The Beastie Boys cover deserves to be rocked up and rolled out, but I think it works better as a live track than a studio album cut.
Switch On The Light is a pretty average tune again – a bluesy rocker with a crap chorus.
When The Sun Don't Shine is an acoustic ditty that was probably rejected from the Livin' it Up album for not being strong enough. The Hawaiian Islands vibe sounds even worse here. Horrible.
There is never time to get comfortable with any style while listening to this album and 24365 is no different. This is another harmless party rock tune with an amusing vocal, but really…why?
I'm On A Roll is much the same – a 2 minute Van Hagar novelty style filler that serves little purpose, but on its own is a little bit of fun.
The last track – again seemingly dumped on here to fill up space is a live medley of two classic Van Halen tunes - Dreams and Cabo Wabo. Both have been radically restructured into acoustic ballad/sing-alongs. Horrible way to close any album and even worse, the last 2 minutes of the track is nothing but some Sammy acapella and crowd singing. Messy.
The Bottom Line
Sadly I think Sammy has his heart in the rightplace, but could use an A&R director to give it to him straight as far as what makes an album work, what style to stick to and how to add a sense of cohesion to a project. Production quality is average – this is raw, loose and features minimal overdubs, which is ok in one sense, but the quality just isn't there sonically and that in turn goes back to the sense that it appears thrown together. This is the first time I have been really genuinely disappointed by a Sammy release.
Previously Reviewed
· Marching To Mars
· Red Voodoo
· Ten 13
· Not For Sale
· Live
· Essential Red Collection
· Livin' It Up
· Cosmic Universal Fashion

Line Up:
· Sammy Hagar: Vocals, Guitars
· Victor Johnson: Guitar
· David Lauser: Drums
· Mona: Bass

Essential For Fans Of:
· Sammy Hagar
Track Listing
· Cosmic Universal Fashion
· Psycho Vertigo *
· Peephole *
· Loud *
· Fight For Your Right To Party
· Switch On The Light
· When The Sun Don't Shine
· 24365
· I'm On A Roll
· Dreams / Cabo

--*Best Tracks

03/02/09: William (B-man) -
Rating: 57
This makes for a great mp3 purchase.

spend .99 and get the song "LOUD"

far from the work he did on "ten 13"

We pray that "Chickenfoot" redeems this amazing retro rock singer.

Still love ya Sammy, but cabo has screwed up your sound, and your vocals are turning into a current Joe Elliot range.

Satch- boost him up, play him some songs he sang on like, "eagles fly", "dreams", and "right now".

so yah; 1 song worth a listen.

24/12/08: DirtyPennyIowa -
Rating: 20
Wow.... horrible cd.... Do not buy this crap.... I love Sammy, but this was an F for no effort....

10/12/08: Gary -
Rating: 90
This is Sammy rocking hard again and making it fun to listen to. Loud is an awesome song and the only one that I didn't like was the live melody of Dreams and Cabo. I find that if the reviewer on this sight doesn't like the album I buy it because that means it's probably a decent album.

07/12/08: Denis -
Rating: 50
This album is miles away from what Sammy and his gang are capable of. The first song is AWFUL! One of the worst songs I've ever heard. Not worth buying. Enough said.

06/12/08: Harv -
Rating: 69
While I disagreed with Andy regard the focus of Def Leppard's Sparkle Lounge CD, I have to completely agree with him here. We have a different take on some of the songs as I don't mind the opening track. However, this CD sounds like it is a bunch of left overs from previous works. Unlike other B-Side collections (Def Leppard's Retroactive is still my favorite Lep album to date), this CD sounds like a Sammy listened to a bunch of demos and said, "Yeah, it works now." I expect Sammy Hagar to sound different from Van Hagar because he is doing solo work. On the other hand, I expect him to produce decent material. The Beastie Boys cover is off-tempo. The live material at the end is pure crap. You can't even hear him. I had to crank my stereo just to hear the track. Most of the tracks are average at best. I played it several times before I rated it. I didn't want my initial reaction to change. After a week in my car, it's just an average CD.

01/12/08: John -
Rating: 0
Unlike most listeners on here, I find this album very good. It IS darker than his usual material, but how much of the same stuff can you release before you get to the point where everything sounds the same. Plus there are a few tracks on here that were written with other bands he was in.
I think this album being a bit different makes it better than his usual party albums. (although, all of those were good too) Plus it shows they can continue without a keyboard player for now. I actually liked the album better on the headphones.

29/11/08: JB -
Rating: 40
Very disappointing. Huge Sammy fan, great live act, loved his last 5 CD's, including "Livin It Up", but this is a weak CD. Thrown together, poorly produced. "Fight For Your Right To Party"..fine in a live set, no need to be on a CD. Sammy needs to get focused and put out a strong, well produced CD, not this garbage

29/11/08: john -
Rating: 60
This cd has some heavy moments,I like the fact he tried for heavier sound this time round..But by end of cd,There no catchy choruses or much to be rembered.This is below average disc,That has some good songs but easily forgotten by end of cd.. I wont listen to this cd as whole again,My friend hated it sold it to me for half the price.I paid bout 6 bucks for it,Wich isnt to much of waste of money for this cd..
Top Tracks for me are,psycho vertigo,fight for yor right to party,24365,dreams/cabo

28/11/08: Tom -
Rating: 82
This album was on its way to me in the mail when I read Andrew's review and I got worried... I'd bought the album unheard, just saw the title track's video on Youtube.

Well, I needn't have worried. It's a solid Sammy Hagar rock album! Here's the track-by-track:
1. Cosmic Universal Fashion: very modern rocker with sort of an electronic surf riff underneath. Found myself bobbing my head along in no time!
2. Psycho Vertigo: dark, heavy, brooding rocker.
3. Peephole: even darker and heavier and quite unsettling when you listen to the lyrics.
4. Loud: straight-up good-times hardrocker!
5. Fight For Your Right: at the start of the song I'd have said "lame rip-off", but it turns into a nice jam towards the end. This version needs to grow on you.
6. Switch On The Light: cool little blues/country rocker with clean guitars.
7. When The Sun Don't Shine: again a country-tune with some tropical sounds thrown in for good measure.
8. 24365: cool party-rocker! Nice riffs too! C'mon if this doesn't get your day going I don't know what will?
9. I'm On A Roll: not too great. Has a few great riffs, but overall feels unfinished. Keep the riffs, back to the drawingboard for the song!
10. Dreams/Cabo Wabo: FILLER! C'mon Sammy, you know that's just filler... Not a great way to end an album.

I popped the CD into my car stereo after a friggin' long and tiresome day at work and by the time I got home at 8PM I was hungry and tired, sure, but the music had perked me right up and I was wearing a smile!

What I like about it is that Sammy's not holding back. His singing sounds as fresh and inspired as it did when he was singing "Bad Motor Scooter" back in 1973.

Hope he keeps having fun and keeps putting out these kind of records every couple of years. Mas tequila! Mas Hagar!

27/11/08: Mike -
Rating: 0
Jesse Harms lyrics/input on Not 4 Sale and prior; specifically on Thing's 've Changed speak very loudly. Jesse is missing terribly on Livin' It Up and now Cosmic Universal Fashion. I hate to be negative as I've been a Sammy fan for years. Especially since I said joining Van personal favorite...was like Reeses Peanut Butter Cups...bringing two of my favorites together.

27/11/08: Danny -
Rating: 50
This album is terrible. I love Sammy, but peephole and Loud are the only decent songs on this album and they are not even produced that well. I have been dissapointed with Sammy's releases since Marching to Mars. I can only hope Chickenfoot provides some promise in this vocal legend. But my expectations are very limited.

27/11/08: Chris -
Rating: 20
Without a doubt the worst Sammy Hagar album ever. I'm a big fan of Sammy's, but this album is pure crap. Andrew was generous giving it 65%. Personally, I liked where he was going with the last album (Livin' It Up), and wish that he stayed on that course. Not that I mind him going back to heavier music, but this stuff just sucks. Virtually unlistenable.

27/11/08: Todd -
Rating: 69
Should have had a direction!!! The album does not flow at all!! I liked the "Planet Us" songs the best! That is the direction and sound that should have been taken and the could have been Van Halen songs! I'm really worried about the "chicken foot" project!! I hope and pray Satch Mo and Andy Johns do all the producing!!!

27/11/08: Todd -
Rating: 69
Should have had a direction!!! The album does not flow at all!! I liked the "Planet Us" songs the best! That is the direction and sound that should have been taken and the could have been Van Halen songs! I'm really worried about the "chicken foot" project!! I hope and pray Satch Mo and Andy Johns do all the producing!!!

27/11/08: doug vogel -
Rating: 0
this is the biggest piece of crap hagar as released, and im a big fan, have everything except the last cd.the songs have no focus, sound like they were just thrown together. i think the cabo wabo thing has run its course. its time to get the band back together, get a producer.although i do like the reworked vh tunes.

26/11/08: Wayne -
Rating: 95
65%?! Are you off you're (red) rocker?! This is the best album he has released in years! 'Crap' 'horrible' - c'mon guys.... is this now 61 yr old too much for you? (I hear Daniel O'Donnel has a new one out - interested?!) Great songs, great vibe and amazing voice. Sammy is back!!!!

26/11/08: Tom -
Rating: 78
Well, it's not as good as Red Voodoo or Not For Sale, but it's still in-your-face Hagar rock'n'roll!

His music in recent years has been all "fun, sunshine, margaritas, sunnies and t-shirts" and of course... tequila. And what's wrong with that?

He's making music for the fun of it and that needs to be applauded. This is his seventh album since he left VH and all VH's given us is that abysmal VH III album.

His recent albums aren't exactly destined to be rock classics, but I don't think he's shooting for that.

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