Album of the Day
After two albums that put Van Halen at the head of the class for party-hearty hard rock, WOMEN AND CHILDREN FIRST showed the quartet to be capable of much more. Their first collection of all-original songs, the 1980 Warner Bros. set moves confidently from classic anthems (“And the Cradle Will Rock...,” “Everybody Wants Some!!”) to rootsy goofs (“Take Your Whiskey Home”) to power balladry (“In a Simple Rhyme”). Producer Ted Templeman and the boys match the fine material with ambitious arrangements including greater use of overdubs and keyboards and a rare guest vocal (from Nicolette Larson). A triple-Platinum, Top 10 hit, WOMEN AND CHILDREN FIRST has been named one of the greatest metal albums of all time by the likes of Kerrang! and Rolling Stone and we'll crank it up in honor of Eddie Van Halen, born on this day in 1955.