JOE BOUCHARD – Tales From The Island

JOE BOUCHARD - Tales From The Island
  • 8/10
    JOE BOUCHARD - Tales From The Island - 8/10


Joe Bouchard
Release date: April 12, 2012

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He may have left Blue Öyster Cult nigh on 3 decades ago, but Joe Bouchard has been anything but quiet, spending stints with Spencer Davis, the X Brothers, and more recently in Blue Coupe alongside former BOC drummer, brother Albert, and Dennis Dunaway, the original bassist with Alice Cooper. In between projects, time spent as a teacher, writer and publisher have kept him more than occupied. Bouchard’s creative itch, however, needed scratching.

Having created some of their finest moments with “Astronomy”, “Nosferatu”, “Morning Final” and “Hot Rails To Hell”, Bouchard was always much more than just the bass player in Blue Öyster Cult. His songwriting and vocals over the years became such an integral part of the BOC sound.

His talents as a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist are fully explored on Tales From The Island, his second solo album, where Bouchard not only writes the bulk of the material and produces the album, but also sings and plays guitar, keyboards, bass, drums and trumpet alongside a whole host of other instruments to create a truly solo, solo album.

Bouchard covers a lot of ground musically with “Retro Rockstar” ticking the Rock box, while “Wild Lands” heads off into Springsteen singer/songwriter territory. “The Pub That Never Closes” may well be the song title that many men may dream of, but it also features a rather splendid lead break showing that Bouchard picked up more than a few tips from former bandmate Buck Dharma.

Bouchard really lets his hair down on the enjoyable romp of “Helluva Hoedown” while giving his banjo and mandolin skills a good blast. “Katrina” shows his more sensitive side, while the bombastic “Roadtrip” is more of what you would expect from someone who spent his formative years in one of America’s most noble Hard Rock acts.

There is much to like about the album and repeated listens reveal further delights. Bouchard, however, leaves the best until last with the garage Punk of “Heart Of Wine” with its glorious overblown harmony-drenched chorus evoking memories of prime time Fire Of Unknown Origin-era BOC.


  • Mick Burgess

    Mick is a reviewer and photographer here at Metal Express Radio, based in the North-East of England. He first fell in love with music after hearing Jeff Wayne's spectacular The War of the Worlds in the cold winter of 1978. Then in the summer of '79 he discovered a copy of Kiss Alive II amongst his sister’s record collection, which literally blew him away! He then quickly found Van Halen I and Rainbow's Down To Earth, and he was well on the way to being rescued from Top 40 radio hell!   Over the ensuing years, he's enjoyed the Classic Rock music of Rush, Blue Oyster Cult, and Deep Purple; the AOR of Journey and Foreigner; the Pomp of Styx and Kansas; the Progressive Metal of Dream Theater, Queensrÿche, and Symphony X; the Goth Metal of Nightwish, Within Temptation, and Epica, and a whole host of other great bands that are too numerous to mention. When he's not listening to music, he watches Sunderland lose more football (soccer) matches than they win, and occasionally, if he has to, he goes to work as a property lawyer.

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