Oregon Music News: Oregon’s all-genre music magazine since 2009

08/24/2016

Tesla readies live album for ‘Mechanical Resonance’ 30th Anniversary

By RUBEN MOSQUEDA // ‘Mechanical Resonance’ was launched with “Modern Day Cowboy” video which slowly made it’s way onto MTV and helped the band gain momentum. “Cowboy” quickly became a fan favorite and Tesla’s ‘signature song.’

Sacramento, California’s quintet Tesla; comprised of vocalist Jeff Keith, guitarists Frank Hannon, Tommy Skeoch, bassist Brian Wheat and drummer Troy Lucketta issued their debut album ‘Mechanical Resonance’ December 8th, 1986.

The album was launched with “Modern Day Cowboy” video which slowly made it’s way onto MTV and helped the band gain momentum. “Cowboy” quickly became a fan favorite and Tesla’s ‘signature song’ however; ‘Mechanical Resonance’ is a no filler album. Songs like; “EZ Come EZ Go,” “Cumin’ Atcha Live,” “Gettin’ Better,” “Changes,” and “Little Suzi” have all been staples in the band’s shows over the years. “Love Me” is extremely underrated and is a favorite of mine to this day.

By the fall of 1987 Tesla secured an opening slot supporting Def Leppard who had released ‘Hysteria' the follow up to their ‘blockbuster' album ‘Pyromania' earlier that spring. This began a 30 year friendship between Tesla and Leppard. Both band’s efforts became hits and the two have toured together several times in subsequent years. In 2016 they are doing just that as Tesla is opening for Leppard with REO Speedwagon are in the middle slot.

In August Mailboat Records will issue ‘Mechanical Resonance: Live!’ which is a celebration of the album’s 30th Anniversary. The album is album recorded live in its entirety but not in the same sequence as the studio effort. “The album wasn’t performed in its entirety. What I mean by that it's not a complete show. We played the songs at various shows and we captured then live and compiled this album. There are no sweetening of the songs in the studio...we fixed some of the acoustic guitar. Frank’s [Hannon] guitar dropped out on “Little Suzi” and i went in and fixed that,” explains bassist Brian Wheat.

There's a preview of the next Tesla album as ‘Mechanical Resonance: Live!’ closes out with “Save That Goodness” written and produced by Def Leppard guitarist Phil Collen. Its an incredible song. Tesla and Collen will be working on the next Tesla album together which will see the light of day in early 2017; for now we have ‘Mechanical Resonance: Live!’

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