For a brief moment in the mid 1980’s US Hard Rockers TESLA were amongst the genres big hitters and all on the strength of the debut long player ‘’Mechanical Resonance’’. Persuaded to ditch attempts at trying to make hit singles TESLA wrote songs from gut instinct and on ‘’Mechanical Resonance’’ the band pull out all the stops to produce a prime time slab of Melodic but hard hitting Rock N Roll.
Fronted by the throaty rasp of Jeff Keith and ably assisted by guitarists Tommy Skeoch and Frank Hannon, on bass by Brian Wheat and finally bringing up the rear on drums the impressive Troy Luccketta TESLA married mass commercial Hard Rock appeal with a street wise attitude delivering a versatile and still, to this day a damn fine Rock album.
California at the time was riding high on the success of such Hair Metal giants as MÖTLEY CRÜE, RATT and DOKKEN who needed shock tactics to get their message across instead of the quality of their music but TESLA did it the other way and gave us both barrels power house Hard Rock with no gimmicks just hard work and endeavour. Tracks like ‘’Ez Come Ez Go’’, ‘’2 Late 4 Love’’ and ‘’getting’ Better’’ are perfectly suited rabble rousers for the times whereas ‘’Cummin Atcha Live’, ‘’Changes’’’ and in particular the hit single ‘’Modern Day Cowboy’’ are TESLA classics which benefit from a more direct Heavy Metal infusion. The guitar interplay between Skeoch and Hannon is superb throughout. The axe duel during ‘’Cumin’ Atcha Live’’ and the overall acoustic play are particular highlights. The solos are straight out of the top drawer and the rhythm section makes a solid foundation all rounded off by the unique voice of Jeff Keith.
Whatever you do don’t mistake TESLA with the Hair Metal crowd of the 80’s. That would be a huge injustice. Nearly two decades on and ‘’Mechanical Resonance’’ still sounds as good and as fresh as it did when first released. A sure sign if needed that quality songs don’t date. (Online May 8, 2005)