.

Fans Claim Van Halen's New Song 'Tattoo' Sounds Like a 1977 Outtake

Tune is similar to 'Down in Flames,' which was never released on an album

January 10, 2012 2:25 PM ET
Van Halen
Van Halen perform at Cafe Wha? in New York City.
Kevin Mazur/WireImage

When Rolling Stone spoke with Sammy Hagar in November, he told us that he heard the new Van Halen record was largely comprised of old music. "I mean stuff from before I even joined the band," Hagar said. "Ed and Dave didn't actually write new songs. They took old stuff from previous sessions, and then maybe Dave had to go in and add vocals because they just had scat vocals, or even no vocal part at all."

It was impossible to know at the time if his claims were true, but at Van Halen's Café Wha? gig last week the one "new" song they released, "She's The Woman," dates back to a demo tape the group made in 1976. This morning they debuted their new single and video "Tattoo," and hardcore fans immediately noticed that it sounded strikingly similar to "Down in Flames," a song they played live in 1977 but never actually put on an album. We're going to let you guys make up your mind on this one. How similar do you think the two songs are? Videos for each are below.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Road to Nowhere”

Talking Heads | 1985

A cappella harmonies give way to an a fuller arrangement blending pop and electro-disco on "Road to Nowhere," but the theme remains constant: We're on an eternal journey to an undefined destination. The song vaulted back into the news a quarter century after it was a hit when Gov. Charlie Crist used it in his unsuccessful 2010 campaign for the U.S. Senate in Florida. "It's this little ditty about how there's no order and no plan and no scheme to life and death and it doesn't mean anything, but it's all right," Byrne said with a chuckle.

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com