Classic Rock Review

The home of old record and bootleg reviews…

Jimmy Page Outrider (1988)


After leaving The Firm, Jimmy decides to do his first “real” solo album, “Outrider”. For the drums, he calls Jason Bonham, son of John, who’s playing would make his father proud. Being a guitarist solo album, it has numerous instrumentals, one third of the songs, plus variety of vocalists, including Chris Farlowe that also sang in Death Wish II soundtrack, and also bassists, like Tony Franklin also an ex-member of The Firm.

Instrumentals “Writers of Winter” and “Liquid Mercury” both have the same characteristic of heaving heavy riffs and good guitar solos. Sure, some people will feel like they were wasted as just instrumentals, and think that they should have vocals, but when hearing “Wanna Make Love” or “Wasting My Time”, both sang by so-so singer John Miles, it may make people doubt it would be really that better.

“Emerald Eyes” is still the best instrumental here. In fact, there is no reason to believe that any of his older ones, like “White Summer” or – “Bron-Yr-Aur” are technically better than this. Truly amazing melody played also with electric guitar, unlike most of the Led Zeppelin’s ones, this instrumental will sure please the ears of any fan.

An almost Led Zeppelin song, “The Only One” is the best track in “Outrider”. Robert Plant’s guest appearance is the only example of what this album could actually be if handled only with great singers. The killer chorus and amazing guitar riff in this hard rocking number really feels like something that could’ve been in LZ II

“Prison Blues” was Jimmy’s noble attempt to make a bluesy epic such as “Since I Been Loving You”, “In My Time of Dying” and “Tea for One”. And, it musical sense, he does it pretty well. Chris Farlowe’s voice also sounds good with the song. But, when he (Chris) finally have a chance to do it right, he also have to ruin it somehow. In this song, he presents us with perhaps the worst lyrics in the whole record. While the beginning already sounds generic “I’ve been a bad boy all night long…” the further comparisons and metaphors are just laughable. Yet, it’s still his best performance in the album.

The cover of “Hummingbird” and “Blues Anthem” don’t really get any better than this. The first one seems uninspired and the second doesn’t match with his grave voice, making the fine guitar work by Page the only real reason to hear this fine ballad.

To sum up, this album has a great guitar work by page and a lot of potential, but, the lack of a good singer in it, only 2-3 tracks fulfill it. Yet, it’s still shows improvement of his writing compared to The Firm’s albums, that later would be used to create the best album is his career sans Led Zeppelin, “Coverdale Page”.

March 15, 2013 - Posted by | Jimmy Page Outrider |

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