Album Review – Enuff Z’Nuff – Clowns Lounge – Frontiers Records r.s.l.

Album Review – Enuff Z’Nuff – Clowns Lounge – Frontiers Records r.s.l.
November 30, 2016 | By More

Look up perseverance in your big dict-ionary and if there is truly a GOD, there will be a photo of Enuff Z’Nuff‘s logo as the description. The band has survived inner turmoil, infighting, OD’s, drugs and Donnie Vie‘s ability to kill any momentum the band has by incoherantly mumbling a few words (Google:Donnie Vie & Clive Davis….better yet, don’t) or by simply walking away to pursue his love affair with a slow suicide by drugs!

As you once sang Donnie, “Wake Up” before it’s too late….for your fans, myself included, your Brother Chip, your family, your kid but most importantly, YOURSELF!

Thankfully, Chip Z’Nuff has withstood the 30+ years of chaos and debauchery to keep the flame burnin’ HIGH N’ BRIGHT for Enuff Z’Nuff! Chip has long been one of the classiest rockers in the joint as I can attest having survived a few close calls with the Grim Reaper in the previous few months and without fail, either by text or with a call, Chip checks in on my recovery process from Congestive Heart Failure every few days! All Hail Father Z’Nuff!

Bringing 2016 to a close, on December 2nd, Enuff Z’Nuff released their 20th album, not including variants, “Clowns Lounge” courtesy of one of the best Rock N’ Roll labels left, Frontiers Music s.r.l.

Album recordings feature performances of: Donnie Vie, Derek Frigo, Jani Lane, James Young.

“Clowns Lounge” is a collection of rarities and early demos that have been partially reworked and re-recorded by the band. This exceptional collection also features a guest appearance from the late Jani Lane (of Warrant) as well as an appearance from James Young of Styx on “The Devil Of Shakespeare”.

As stated in a recent press release regarding “Clowns Lounge” origins…..

“Donnie (Vie, original vocalist) and I wrote the songs in the later part of 1988-89. They were recorded in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, on 2″ inch analog tape, during the time of our debut. The tracks were never finished, as we were very prolific and focused on laying down as many ideas as possible. Through the resources provided to us: recording studio, production, etc., we had a plethora of songs during that era and for one reason or another this batch slipped through the cracks. To restore the record we returned to the studio to record guitar, bass vocals, etc. which took us about six weeks in my studio and at CRC (Chicago Recording Company) along with Stonecutter Studio in downtown Chicago. The skeleton of the song was already in place and we wanted to make sure the record had the feel of where the band is today. We also added a bonus single track (“Dog on a Bone”) that we plan on releasing as the first single.”


Now that we’ve taken care of the introductions and backstory, lower the lights, turn on the lava lamp, light some incense and pack the peace pipe will we journey to the center of the mind with Chicago’s favorite lil’ Freaky Hippies, Enuff Z’Nuff!

“Dog On A Bone” is the first single and video from the new album. It is obviously a newly written track featuring Chip on vocals. It has a fun spirited 70’s glam rock vibe that lends alot of it’s influence to David Bowie. Lyrically it’sabout the up’s n’ downs of relationships. The video has a fun spirited vibe to it as well! Digg it!

“Runaway” Kicking off with one of the heavist riffs EZN has ever put to tape mixed with the obvious influence of Eddie Van Halen on Derek. As usual the bands harmonies are TOP SHELF! More proof that Donnie Vie is grossly underrated as a singer! Shreddin’ solo as to be expected!

“Back In Time” A hard rockin’ number featuring a rapid fire riff from Derek and frenetic drumming from Vikki. Really diggin’ the solo, melodic, short, sweet, to the point and some wicked Whammy bar! Dive bomb outro…done!

“She Makes It Harder” A classic Enuff Z’Nuff track in every since of the description. An early pick for my favorite of the album! It has all the right elements for my ears!

“Rockabye Dreamland” Ohhh harmonious Donnie and Chip at thier finest! Mid tempo paced groove rocker! If radio existed as it did in the late 80’s/early 90’s, this is a hit, in my opinion.

“The Devil Of Shakespeare” (feauturing the late Jani Lane & James ‘JY’ Young of Styx) It is so great to hear my old friend Jani’s voice but he threw us a curveball back when he recorded his vocal in 2004 by paying homage to David Bowie!

His vocal performance shouldn’t come as a suprise if they own Warrant’s 2001 “Under The Influence” where Jani channels his inner-Ziggy on “Suffragette City”.

James ‘JY’ Young lends his guitar prowess to the track.

“Radio” Simply put….one hell of a fuzzy fun rocker! Crank it to 11!

“Good Luv” A slammin’ intro followed by some heavy riffage give Donnie a platform to shine. Chip’s chorus vocals are very strong and prevelant! Melody for days!

“Round And Round” I hear Bobby Blotzer is looking for a gig but surely EZN doesn’t share thier cheesecake so easily? Whew! Soon we discover the greasy rodent is not involved and that this IS an Enuff Z’Nuff not anything to do with RATT! All hail Enuff Z’Nuff!

“Nothing” Nothing overly special here. 😛 Typical Enuff Z’Nuff which is better than 99% on radio these days!

“Backstreet Kids” Yowzah EZN, SLOW DOWN! Take a hit off the peace pipe, we’re in no hurry unlike this tune! Talk about a new band called Fast Z’Nuff…. 😛

“One More Hit”
Hmmm, I smell what you’re “cookin'” with the title! Who doesn’t appreciate a groovy double entendre?

A bluesy riff opens the final cut. Donnie is in fine form on this rocker, the harmonies are in place, Chip is the typical residue keeping everyone sticking together and Vikki Foxx is slammin’ away all-the-while never receiving the credit he was due as one of Hard Rock’s Best Drummers of the 1990’s!
Just another day in the life of Enuff Z’Nuff!

To sum this archival release from Enuff Z’Nuff up, it is typical Enuff Z’Nuff! A finely tuned 1969 El Camino ran on a special organic blend of fuel painted neon purple with neon green flames that sounded great back when they first debuted and despite one members selfish suicidal behavior, with Chip Z’Nuff aka the Dog On The Phone, Enuff Z’Nuff sounds even greater today and thier future is so bright, the who band needs Rose colored shades!

All hail Enuff Z’Nuff!

Enuff Z’nuff:
Chip Z’nuff – Singer, electric bass, guitar
Tony Fennell – Electric guitar, vox
Tory Stoffregen – Lead guitar, vox
Erik Donner – Drums, percussion, vox

Click Here to Order “Clowns Lounge”

Released 12.02.2016 on Frontiers Records s.r.l.

Released 12.02.2016 on Frontiers Records s.r.l.


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Comments (2)

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  1. Ohmyears says:

    Let’s see 1 ripped off monkees song plus 1 god rest his soul rock legend’s demo he left on a tour bus that zchip stole. The rest all kick ass demos Donnie didn’t deem fit for any major release. In my assessment fits this release. This is a great cd despite Chip who couldn’t sing his way out of a paper bag on “pooch screwed the pooch”. Art work is great and the demos are great. Devil in Shakespeare is a great song ,but is out of place on here.Buy the CD skip the first track save your ears.

    • francquie says:

      ive never understood why nobodys think they can try to be somebody by putting other people down. none of this was stolen. donnie doesnt have the only say on songs; they both do. and this was overlooked until now. so say yay new stuff, or some oldies but goodies, and then move on.