Bump In The Night by Dennis Michael Tenney
Whaddaya say we ring in the official appointment with a double dose of Dennis?
It’s difficult to talk about Kevin Tenney’s 1986 debut without mentioning it’s Sweet Song, Bump In the Night, performed there by butt-rockers Steel Breeze, who have possibly the silliest juxtoposition-as-band-name from an era built on such nonsense.
Steel Breeze? Seriously guys? The literal interpretation of that idea is probably the only thing saving it from complete stupidity. Or maybe that makes it worse, I’m not sure. Either way, it’s not even approaching tough. Just the word “breeze” itself is so passive, I don’t care if you throw “murder” in front of it, there’s no coming back. It can’t be toughened up. Though “steel” is a valiant effort, I suppose.
But enough about them though, cause they’re not even featured here, as The Shindig has opted for the similar, though artistically purer form of Bump In the Night from the song’s author, Shindig All-Star Dennis Michael Tenney.
His demo for this tune, while less polished and less flashy than the falsetto strewn official from Steel Breeze, is better. Steel Breeze’s cut just feels like they’re trying to show off, and Dennis’ workmanlike approach is much appreciated in contrast.
Gone are Breeze’s unnecessary vocal flourishes, the wussification of the backing vocals, that flanger heavy intro, and the general Foreigner-ness,…not that I have anything against Foreigner. Oh yeah, and Dennis’ solo is way better, you ask me.
Naw, this version just has more heart, and it’s lyrics get the treatment they deserve from the man who penned them.
You’ll hear Dennis croon about how “the stairway’s a dragon,” or “the coat racks a madman” when you turn out the lights. Fair enough I suppose, logical conclusion do get harder to make,…as you lie there awake.
While it’s no The Beast Inside, what could be? Dennis is just gearing up for that opus here with Bump In the Night and it’s easy to see the seeds of that classic take root.
We were pumped to find this version of the track and allow Dennis stretch his legs a little more and really make The Shindig a place he can call home.
Originally intended for 1986’s Witchboard, here’s Dennis Michael Tenney’s demo for Bump In the Night.