Metal is another broad genre of music, from the sappiest and catchiest Glam/Pop Metal ballads to the most brutal Death Metal grinders, to the most blasphemous Black Metal rituals and the most neck-breaking Thrash speedsters. And I have favorites as well from each of these subgenres.
And I will start with the most-derogated Metal genres of all—Glam/Pop Metal, whose commercial peak was the period 1986–1992. Here are my most favorite albums in the category. No matter how many music enthusiasts ridicule it, this subgenre of Metal remains well-loved! I actually love the entire genre Metal in practically the same intensity as I love also New Wave and Progressive Rock.
Van Halen – 5150 (1986)
Choosing which album by Van Halen is the best is a matter of personal taste and experience. The reason this album is my favorite is because it contains three Power ballads that meant something personal to me: “Why Can’t This Be Love?,” “Dreams,” and “Love Walks In.” Listening to these songs right now makes me teary-eyed. Such is the power of songs to draw emotions from a serious listener.
Guns ’N’ Roses – Appetite for Destruction (1987)
What self-respecting Metalhead didn’t fall in love with the band especially because of this powerful album of stellar intensity? Simply a sweet album o’ mine!
Bon Jovi – New Jersey (1988)
My first introduction to Bon Jovi was 1986’s ‘Slippery when Wet,’ but this album was what really resonated with me. “Blood on Blood” did it for me.
Skid Row – Skid Row (1989)
“I Remember You”! Enough said.
Warrant – Cherry Pie (1990)
Another album that resonated so deeply in me, primarily because “I Saw Red” became the theme song of my then broken heart, courtesy of someone whom I used to love so much during this era.
Mr. Big – Lean into It (1991)
When this superband came out, the debut album was a sure hit. But this one was what saw the band in their subtler yet more creative and still virtuosic predisposition. “Green-Tinted Sixties Mind”–yeah! Memories! Bliss!
Hayp – Hayp (1991)
In the Philippine archives, the only album that I could classify as proper Pop/Glam Metal that really impressed me was the self-titled, only album of Hayp, which was comprised by virtuosic musicians…very befitting in the genre that they operated within. And I’m honored for my former band’s having performed back-to-back with Hayp a number of times at Club Dredd Timog in 1991/1992; and the honor of having guitarist Mendez walked into the stage one gig during the last song of our set to engage my bandmate guitarist Rain Paggao in a ‘Crossroads’-reminiscent lick trading to the delight of the ecstatic crowd of that night’s jampacked Club Dredd.
Saigon Kick – The Lizard (1992)
When this album came out, the once-bright star of the genre was already waning, giving way to the next darling-genre of the mainstream–Grunge and Alternative Rock. But this particular album still came to my hands–a gift from a former love, who sang to me “Love Is on the Way.” I fell in love all over again, only to realize that the love that she was referring to–being “on the way”–was not meant for me anymore but already for another guy. I cried millions of teardrops to this fucking beautiful song back in those days! Good thing that I could listen now to this album in peace. But then, of course, some sad memories will never be forgotten. They remain forever.
There are still so many albums on my list of favorites from this genre (Poison, White Lion, Aerosmith, Nelson, Damn Yankees, Steelheart) but this Top 8 should do for now.