Dokken - Heaven Comes Down
by Kevin Wierzbicki
Here's the lucky 13th studio album from beloved band Dokken. And the guys --- singer Don Dokken, guitarist Jon Levin, bass man Chris McCarvill and drummer BJ Zampa --- must have been carrying their good luck charms when they hit the studio as they've delivered a very strong effort here. The record starts with "Fugitive," a showcase for Levin as he romps on guitar behind Dokken singing about a man who is so withdrawn from daily life that he "can't keep track of time" and cries out for people to "just leave me alone." The song rocks with the classic Dokken sound and fans will love singing along, especially those who may be feeling a bit alienated from society at the time. "Gypsy," with lyrics about a woman who is as mystical as she is alluring, recalls something that Ronnie James Dio might have done while Levin deals out more searing guitar on "Is It Me or You;" "I'll Never Give Up" is a slow and smoky ballad that has a bit of a grunge feel to it. Zampa's drumming comes to the forefront on the at times Led Zeppelin-ish "Saving Grace" where he plays a rat-a-tat intro and some fancy fills throughout. The band steps away from the classic Dokken sound for closing track "Santa Fe," an acoustic Americana cut about a man who is road weary that perhaps is somewhat autobiographical. While the cut is not typical Dokken it is likely to be one of the album's most popular songs. Otherwise fans will be familiarly rockin' with Dokken throughout.