Produced by: Pat Regan
  1. Electrified
  2. Static
  3. Hiding Place
  4. Superfantastic
  5. A Rose Alone
  6. Hole In The Sun
  7. How Does It Feel
  8. Try To Do Without It
  9. Dancing With My Devils
  10. Mr. Never In A Million Years
  11. My New Religion
  12. Water Over The Bridge (Japan Only)
I was initially a little disappointed with the new Mr. Big album.
But I have been disappointed before and come back to love the end result. That's what is happening here as I get used to the revamped sound and the new feel.
The new album is the first to feature new guitarist Richie Kotzen (Solo, Poison). Quite the difference he has made too, as the sound has a new edge to it.
The guys finally have the more hard edged feel back in place, over the last two more acoustic driven records.
The record has a raw, live and earthy feel to it, with some parts sounding improvised.
The injection of a new member and a couple of years break have refueled the band and it feels like they are starting out once again.
For that reason, this reminds me of the feel of the debut. The songs are rocking again, albeit with a heavy blues base and have that swaggering feel to them that the debut did.
I just bet the next album moves close to the feel of my favourite album Lean Into It.
I love the intro to this album. Kotzen's guitar, then the familiar tune of Billy's base slapping, Pat's drums and then Eric's great vocals. Electrified is a big rocker, but with added swagger.
Eric martin sounds a million bucks, great to hear him screaming again after his way too soft solo album. Kotzen's backing vocals also add a new dimension. I love the jamming feel towards the end of the track - it sounds almost live.
Static has the definite feel of the debut. A heavy blues based rocker, it reminds me of tracks like Merciless and Wind Me Up. Interestingly enough, Kotzen ads a couple of lead vocals and mixes brilliantly with the song and with Eric Martin.
Hiding Place kind of lets things down a little. A slow bluesy track, there is unnecessary use of vocal effects and the song really doesn't go anywhere.
Superfantastic is better. This is the first single off the album and clearly the most commercial. A soft acoustic intro and a simple vocal leads to a more fuller sound as the song goes on. A good hook and basically a very catchy song. Typical Mr. Big.
A Rose Alone is another fairly simple pop song, but more rocking and fully electric. The hook and mini-anthem chorus are fantastic and should go down real well live.
Hole In The Sun is more laid back than the last two tracks. A simple verse but a chorus that again is pretty catchy and memorable.
How Does It Feel is heavier and bluesier again. Similar to Hiding Place, but with a better pace and a strong raw, moody chorus.
Try To Do Without It is almost a southern blues track. Not bad, but not an album highlight.
Just when we needed to pick the pace up a little comes another track straight out of the Mr. Big hard book. Cracking mini-drum solo opens the track, then it's a blues rhythm with Billy and Richie leading the way. The chorus to Dancing With My Devils comes and goes without fuss, but it's still a pretty good track.
Mr. Never In A Million Years is a little boring. OK guys, we have done the blues thing now...move on. Still not a bad track, the chorus picks the pace up a little, but enough already.
It's acoustic ballad time again, with My New Religion. A great Eric Martin vocal, soft but strong. Still, this alone doesn't save the track. Not essential.
Water Over The Bridge is actually the bonus track. It should have been included at the expense of Mr. Never In A Million Years.
It has a snap to it's sound and is a mid paced blues rocker. Again, not essential, but better than a couple of others on the album.
BOTTOM LINE: It looks and sounds like a new beginning for Mr. Big. The style and feel has had an overhaul and the album rates as one of their best. Doesn't touch the debut and Lean Into It, but does a lot to repair the damage of Bump Ahead...Generally very pleasing apart from the odd song that gets caught up in being too sluggish. The first half of the album is clearly better then the second.
ESSENTIAL FOR: Most Mr. Big fans, Eric Martin fans and old Richie Kotzen fans.
DISCOGRAPHY:Mr. Big . Raw Like Sushi . Lean Into It . Raw Like Sushi 2 . Bump Ahead . Japandamonium . Hey Man . Big, Bigger Biggest . At The Hard Rock Live . Live At Budokan . Get Over It

17/09/04: Farid Gilbert -
Rating: 75
Richie can^t replace Paul Gilbert. He make a new colour for this album. Not bad, But too pop. It^s a cool album, with a superfantastic track. Electrified, but still static. It^s not essential for a metal virtuoso, but it must be collected by Mr.Big Fans.In other words, it^s a cool album

01/08/04: Joan Grifoll -
Rating: 95
Nobody remembers Pat Torpey? His musical sensibility continues growing in his artistic quality. Pat, you are high !
(please, excuse my english)

12/04/04: Gerard Young -
Rating: 89
Here is my own Top 5 songs in this album...
4.A Rose Alone
5.Dancin with my Devils

My most favorite is the song "Electrified". Those of you who dont know, the song goes like this...
" I'm over My Head, Cause your'e out of your mind... < You Got Me Electrified>..."

12/04/04: Gerard Young -
Rating: 89
here's how i like it track by track...
1.Electrified- My select song for this album
2.Static- My second select song... a heavy one
3.Hiding Place- A sick one... too slow
4.Superfantastic- Reminds me of the songs "To Be With You"
A Rose Alone
Hole In The Sun
How Does It Feel
Try To Do Without It
Dancing With My Devils
Mr. Never In A Million Years
My New Religion
Water Over The Bridge (Japan Only)

15/03/02: fosso - salva&MENTA.NET
Rating: 75

26/11/01: Edu -
Rating: 98
richie, u are the best

24/01/01: Rockystar -
Rating: 90
bueno, muy bueno, lo mejor el tema que no viene en el disco la veersion de los purple "burn" la mejor version de ese tema que he escuchado nunca, ritchie kotzen esta muy apropiado en el disco, no se nota para nada la perdida de paul gilbert, un disco muy bueno

11/09/00: Frank Kloppenburg -
Rating: 100

29/04/00: Keith McNutt -
Rating: 90
Great CD!!! It's really refreshing to hear some MELODIC music for a change! I think the addition of Kotzen adds a fresh new direction for the band. Eric Martin is always awesome & Billy Sheehan is very much in his element. "Thanks guys" for some exciting new music!

17/04/00: angel -
Rating: 90
Nearly perfect. Richie add some new touch to the songs in the album, and it's fine. I've never blame Richie to replace Paul, and I hope any other fans did the same things too. Finally, Eric admitted that playing bluesy and soulful song was a long time dream he and the band wanna go into, and he thanked Richie to make it came true. The songs was totally amazing!

14/04/00: Lance Hegefeld -
Rating: 90
It's just good to here MR. BIG again. I'm surprised I found it here here in the states. I thought it was an import. "Superfantastic" is a great song. It just pure and simple great MR. BIG. The other tracks are good, may take a while to grow on you though. "GET OVER IT" is a little bit slower than the earlier albums. So it you like good rock, pick this one up. Martins' vocals are still awesome.

20/01/00: Marc Vanway -
Rating: 10
The Best MR BIG CD absolutely. Ritchie kotzen has done a great job here!!! Buy or die!!

06/01/00: ismail -
Rating: 85
not bad!

Rating: 85
It's refreshing to have MR BIG recording again after the extended hiatus. Although I loved Paul Gilbert the addition of Richie Kotzen has allowed the band to focus on a more bluesier approah which works well. All the songs are strong and there is a mature undercurrent to the album. Only complaint with such talented musicians a little more shred would be highly regarded. PS These guys are uniformly excellent in concert and Eric Martin is a great vocalist.

23/10/99: Michael -
Rating: 0
After hearing that Richie Kotzen replaced Paul Gilbert in one of my favorite bands, I was overwhelmed with excitement. Not only was I going to hear one of my favorite bands again, but now it was with one of my favorite guitarists and singers (Richie Kotzen). Getting this CD took some searching unfortunately as it is not available here in the US. I finally found it at Virgin Megastore for under $20.00 which is good for an import. Anyway, after my first listen I was very pleased with a few songs right away (Static, Hiding Place, Superfantastic, How Does It Feel & Mr. Never In A Million Years). Overall there is a more bluesy overtone from Richie's input. The songs I enjoyed the most were the ones that Richie clearly wrote or co-wrote. These songs have a little more edge to them than the ones written by Eric Martin and longtime co-writer Andre Pessis, who shows up on a few songs.

Here's a song-by-song breakdown:

1. Electrified: Uptempo, bluesy rocker that deserves a better mix. Great song, bad engineering. Nice solo by RK.

2. Static: One of the best songs on the CD. Written exclusively by Richie, this song features him on co-lead vocals with Eric Martin. Nice blend with the two of them. Should have happened more often on the CD.

3. Hiding Place: Heavy, slow dirge-like rhythm. Almost Soundgarden in its feel. Very cool Richie solo.

4. Superfantastic: Very catchy tune. Good choice as a first single. I'm sure this will be monstrous in Japan. Unfortunately the garbage that's hip here (Limp Bizkit, Korn, Kid Rock) is nowhere near the level of this tune and sadly it will never be heard on the radio here. Best Eric Martin tune by far.

5. A Rose Alone: Mid-tempo bluesy tune. Nice Telecaster tone from Richie. You can definitely hear the single-coil pickup in this one. The tune itself is so-so. Decent chorus though.

6. Hole In The Sun: Also a so-so song. Better pre-chorus than the chorus. I will give credit to EM's vocal part.

7. How Does It Feel: Another favorite song of mine right now. GREAT CHORUS. This should be the next single without a doubt. Very catchy tune. Like "Superfantastic", I couldn't get this one out of my head.

8. Try To Do Without It: This song also has a very cool chorus. Not quite as good as "How Does It Feel" or "Superfantastic", but nevertheless it's a very good song. Very melodic and catchy.

9. Dancin' With My Devils: Can you say, "Stevie Ray Vaughan reincarnated"? This song is very influenced by SRV, in a good way. Definitely Richie's songwriting shining through here. Awesome tone, awesome tune. Just awesome.

10. Mr. Never In A Million Years: This is one of the best Mr. Big songs I've ever heard. The production on this one almost makes up for the rest of the album's lack of RK's vocals. This song could easily be a Free tune. Eric Martin's vocals sound very much like Paul Rodgers here, moreso than ever before.

11. My New Religion: Nice Eric Martin tune. Cool lyrics and melody. Liked this one live when I saw them recently. Could be another single.

12. Water Over The Bridge (bonus track on Japanese CD): Forgetable. I can see why this isn't on the non-Japanese release. Not a terrible song, just average and semi-cheesy. With such great songs before it, I was a little let down that this was the closer.

Overall this CD is very good and definitely worth getting for any Mr. Big fan. If you're a Richie Kotzen fan, especially his vocal stuff, you will love "Static" but, like me, will probably be disappointed in the production of this CD. The mix of the background vocals totally buries RK and should have highlighted him a little more. It's as if he's not there most of the time. The guitar playing is very tasteful and appropriate for the tunes. If you're looking for shredfest, go elsewhere. The rest of the band is in fine form and I look forwd