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A Review of the Album "Under Lock and Key" by the Band Dokken

Updated on February 9, 2020
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Ara is a Journalism graduate from California State University Northridge who is looking to always explore his writing opportunities.


Why is Under Lock and Key Such a Great Hard Rock Album?

"Under Lock and Key" released in 1985 is this writer’s favorite album from this American hard rock band. The reason for this is? You guessed it if you said it is because of the songs on here. From the very catchy hard rock opener called Unchain the Night, the awesome love song called In My Dreams and pretty much most of the songs, "Under Lock and Key" is a solid hard rock album that mainly explores the concepts of love and relationships. Under Lock and Key as of 2018 is Dokken's best album of the 1980's.

Under Lock and Key the Review & Analysis of the Songs The Hunter & In My Dreams

The Hunter is a song about a person that is in search of love as he walks the streets feeling like he is lonely. This may be the weakest song on this album but Don Dokken’s range makes up for the deficiencies. In My Dreams is one of the strongest songs in the history of Dokken with great vocals! The song is about a person that has many sleepless nights as he tosses and turns in bed. He knows that the relationship with his lover is over even if the love is strong in his dreams. It is painful to have to face rejection as the person you love turns away from you. By coincidence or chance, there is a song called Sleepless Nights which would be on the album after this one.

"Will the Sun Rise"

Dokken Contributed to the American Music Scene in a Positive Way

I’m not the biggest fan of hard rock but Dokken at this time showed that they could compete musically in the American music scene. With the breakup of White Lion, Dokken is one of the few American hard rock bands still active and I’m referring to the bands that have been around since at least the 1970’s. Who knows whether I will review any more albums by American artists but the heyday of the US rock and metal scene was the 1980’s, their strongest point. Will that strength return at some point in the future like the sun rises in the morning? Given how the music scene has changed, that seems unlikely. Speaking of the sun rising, the song Will the Sun Rise is actually a song about fighting for freedom as we set off to sail through the waters of life.

Under Lock and Key is a Better Album Than 1987's Back for the Attack

"Under Lock and Key" is an album that resonates with me on a certain level. The vocals are not as high pitched as on 1987’s Back for the Attack which is also a good album but is not quite as good as this one is. The song called Don’t Lie to Me is just as the title implies, a relationship built on lies. Unchain the Night is a solid opening song for what is Dokken’s strongest album of the 1980’s. Slippin’ Away is a love song about someone that didn’t realize that even love does not last forever in this human life. Expanding on the theme of love (or lack of it) is the song called It’s Not Love. There are times when we have to let someone go when they are not treating us the right way. When they mistreat us, that is not love but it is a way that they take advantage of us. The song called Don’t Lie to Me lyrically is a love song about not wanting to be mistreated by someone if they want to stay in the relationship. Healthy relationships cannot survive if the other person lies and treats us like fools. For fans of hard rock, Under Lock and Key is a solid album with decent production considering that the album came out in 1985.

"In My Dreams" Music Video

© 2018 Ara Vahanian


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