7 82359-4 Rocks In The Head
Produced by Gerard McMahon
Released on July 1, 1992
no chart information
Find it at GEMM
7 82359-4 cover  

A s Roger Daltrey sings (and Gerard McMahon writes) on “Mirror Mirror,” “I can tell a lie real good / And maybe you’ll believe every word.” Rocks In The Head is a lie, like most Daltrey albums, a sham that earns another sweaty, gritty performance from one of the most gifted voices in music. His whole career has been a singalong Cyrano, appropriating the words of others and gilding them in his golden throat, imbuing them with the energy and charisma that oozes from the singer but rarely from the original songwriter. After more than half a dozen albums, his fans have already come to terms with the protean role of the singer/actor, and have learned to appreciate his willingness to invest songs good and bad with the same energy. Produced, played and written in large part by Gerard McMahon, there’s no question who gets the better part of the deal. McMahon’s material is good but the sort of thing that songwriters churn out in spades: mild rants in an election year, love songs, looking at the world around them and reflecting on what’s lacking. To say these blossom in Daltrey’s care is an understatement; he champions them, and the victories are his. “Days of Light,” “You Can’t Call It Love” and “Everything A Heart Could Ever Want” might have been shopped to third-rate singers. Instead they fall to Daltrey's care, where they swell to grand statements. Following a five-year absence from recording, Rocks In The Head didn’t roll out to a receptive or eager audience, which is a shame. It’s far and away one of Daltrey’s more polished creations. “Unforgettable Opera” and “Mirror Mirror” may not displace the chills you felt when you first heard “Avenging Annie” or “Without Your Love,” but it wears well. McMahon produces the record with the rich ornamental jangle of an Indigo Girls or a Lindsey Buckingham, balancing the female backing singers with bursts of lead guitar to strike the right balance between emotive and explosive. Rocks In The Head isn’t a great record. None of Roger’s are really -- at best they’re product peddled as a tonic. But if you’re inclined to buy what he’s selling, Rocks In The Head is remarkably easy to swallow.

7 82359-4 lyric sleeve
7 82359-4 lyric sleeve


  1. WHO'S GONNA WALK ON WATER    (Gerard McMahon)
  2. BEFORE MY TIME IS UP    (Gerard McMahon/David Katz)
  3. TIMES CHANGED    (Gerard McMahon/Roger Daltrey)
  4. YOU CAN'T CALL IT LOVE    (David Ruffy/Walter Ray/Roger Daltrey)
  5. MIRROR MIRROR    (Gerard McMahon)
  6. PERFECT WORLD    (Gerard McMahon)
  7. LOVE IS    (Gerard McMahon/Ricky Byrd/David Katz/Roger Daltrey)
  8. BLUE MAN'S ROAD    (Gerard McMahon/Ricky Byrd/Roger Daltrey)
  9. EVERYTHING A HEART COULD EVER WANT (WILLOW)    (Gerard McMahon/Roger Daltrey)
  10. DAYS OF LIGHT    (Gerard McMahon/Roger Daltrey)
  11. UNFORGETTABLE OPERA    (Gerard McMahon/Roger Daltrey)


ROGER DALTREY -- vocals, harmonica, guitar
RICKY BYRD -- guitars, lead guitars, background vocals, co-producer (1)
DAVID KATZ -- keyboards, bass
JODY LINSCOTT -- percussion
GERARD McMAHON -- guitars, keyboards, background vocals, musical direction
TOMMY PRICE -- drums
Emily Burridge -- cello (11)
Jamie Daltrey -- background vocals (9)
Marc Egan -- bass (4)
Don Henze -- additional background vocals
Pim Jones -- guitar, slide and acoustic guitar, "WAH" guitar solo
Robert Lamm -- piano (11)
Jay Leonhart -- upright bass (10)
Billy Nicholls -- additional background vocals
David Ruffy -- drums (4)
Jenny Ruffy -- additional background vocals
Pat Sommers -- additional background vocals
John Van Eps -- Synclavier keyboard
Vinnie Zummo -- flamenco guitar (6)
Jonnie "Most" Davis -- mixing
Tony Volante -- engineer, mixing (6)
Scott James, Mark Chamberlin, Chris Henze -- additional engineering
Melanie Nissen -- art direction
Graham Hughes -- cover photograph
Enrique Badulescu -- additional photography
Tom Bricker -- design

US July 1, 1992 Atlantic CD/CS 82359 lyric sleeve


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