Ted Nugent – “Nugent” (1982)

Ted NugentTed Nugent’s 1982 album Nugent was his first for Atlantic Records after a successful run with Epic.  Ted welcomed fan favorite Derek St. Holmes back to the fold to sing about half the songs on the album (with Ted handling the rest).  Nugent produced the album himself and did a mighty fine job too.  Nugent possesses a clear, timeless sound.  While Ted Nugent was never much in the way of a songwriter, he was a fine guitarist in the traditional rhythm and blues sense.  Nugent further hammers home both notions, as the songs themselves are fairly average while Ted’s playing carries most of the load.  His guitar tone here is particularly ear-friendly.  There are a few embarrassing moments to be had (mostly on the songs Ted sings himself), but not enough to destroy the whole experience.  Ted gets political on the pro-military action song Bound And Gagged — strong words coming from a man who may or may not have shit his own pants to get out of Vietnam.

The Nugent album ends on a high note with one of Ted’s very best tunes from the eighties — a tasty track called Tailgunner.  With a killer baseline and some fierce soloing from Uncle Ted, Tailgunner calls to mind the classic Nugent cut Stanglehold.  Like a blast straight out of 1976, Tailgunner brings with it a certain “dope-smoking-in-the-back-of-the-van” kind of coolness.  My score: B-

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