Just two years after successfully handing the keys of one of rock's most valuable franchises over to new singer Sammy Hagar, Van Halen returned with 1988's impressively diverse 'OU812.'
From the amped-up blues of 'Black and Blue' to the down-home country-tonk of 'Finish What Ya Started' and the supremely (overly?) poppy 'Feels So Good,' this album found the band pushing at the boundaries of their sound like never before.
'When it's Love' is perhaps the band's most straight-ahead and elegant love song ever. Meanwhile, parts of first song 'Mine All Mine' sound like they belong on a jazz fusion record.
Of course, there's some more typical guitar pyrotechnics as well, with Eddie Van Halen making up for some simplistic lyrics on tracks like 'A.F.U. (Naturally Wired)' and 'Source of Infection.'
(In Hagar's defense, after '5150' and his contract-required 1987 solo record, he had to come up with three sets of lyrics in just over two years. You might have thrown a few extra "Alright" and "Yeahs" in, too!)
That's a wide variety of musical styles, and we didn't even mention our personal favorite, the epic, undeniably cool beach drinking anthem 'Cabo Wabo.' OK, we revealed our vote, what's your favorite 'OU812' song?