It Was 35 Years Ago Today: 'Van Halen'

[Warner Bros-1978] 

Like Are You Experienced? a decade prior, Van Halen’s self-titled debut ushered in a world-class, and ultimately, hugely influential electric guitarist that changed the rock and roll landscape irrevocably. But it’s just more than Eddie VH’s jaw-dropping chops that made this album a hard rock classic and one of the greatest debuts of all time. It’s also the larger-than-life David Lee Roth persona; the locked-in rhythm section of Alex Van Halen and Michael Anthony, including the latter's contribution to the criminally overlooked vocal harmonies; and--most importantly--tunes, tunes, tunes. Among them, such classic rock radio staples as “Running With The Devil”, “Ain’t Talking ‘Bout Love”, “Little Dreamer” and the incendiary covers of “Ice Cream Man” and The Kinks’ “You Really Got Me”. Still the shit 35 years later.