Mr. Big guitarist Paul Gilbert says Van Halen II is among the ten albums that changed his life.
Here’s what Gilbert had to say about Van Halen’s classic sophomore effort from 1979 during a recent interview with ClassicRockHistory.com’s Andrew Daly:
All the David Lee Roth-era Van Halen records were monuments of excellence to me. But Van Halen II hit me at just the right age. For years, I used the stretchy tapping part in “Spanish Fly” as my left-hand warm-up. But there were so many musical elements to savor. The tight rhythm parts in “Outta Love Again” and “Beautiful Girls,” the boogie riffing in “Bottoms Up,” the super mean bends and spur of the moment fills in “D.O.A.,” the back and forth high stabs and chunky low notes to pull clarity out of complex chords in “Light Up the Sky,” the tasteful tapping and beautiful rhythm guitar in “You’re No Good,” and the inventive tapping in “Dance the Night Away” and “Women in Love.” I still have my original vinyl copy that I bought the day the album came out. That piece of plastic is important to me.