Tesla came out in 1986 with an album that looked and sounded different than the Bon Jovi’s and Poison’s of the world. They didn’t use hairspray and chose a more basic look with a Southern Rock swagger. But somehow, they still fit into the scene, but at the same time winning over some fans from the 70’s. For those of us who grew up with 80’s Rock in some ways they were our version of Aerosmith.
So here’s our list of their albums ranked, and I’ll say right now you could easily make an argument for the first two being switched around, but we felt their second album put them on another level of popularity. Either way, they both kick ass.
- “The Great Radio Controversy” (1989) – Their second album is often regarded as Tesla’s best work. It features the hit singles “Love Song” and “Heaven’s Trail (No Way Out)” and showcases the band’s bluesy hard rock sound. The album received critical acclaim and commercial success, solidifying Tesla’s place in the rock music scene.
- “Mechanical Resonance” (1986) – This debut album introduced Tesla’s brand of melodic hard rock. It features the popular singles “Modern Day Cowboy” and “Little Suzi” and established the band’s sound and style. “Mechanical Resonance” is a fan favorite and a testament to Tesla’s songwriting skills and musicianship. They had a different vibe from many of the other 80’s bands as they put away the hairspray for a more jeans and t-shirt look.
- “Psychotic Supper” (1991) – This album builds upon the success of their previous releases. It contains the hit singles “Edison’s Medicine (Man out of Time)” and “Call It What You Want.” “Psychotic Supper” showcases Tesla’s versatility and ability to blend heavy riffs with melodic hooks. They took a slightly more raw approach to help fit into the changing musical landscape.
- “Five Man Acoustical Jam” (1990) – This live acoustic album captured Tesla’s performance during their acoustic tour. It features reimagined versions of their own songs, as well as covers of classics like “Signs” and “We Can Work It Out.” The album brought Tesla mainstream success with the hit single “Signs.” This one is completely different than all their other albums, but it opened them up to a completely different audience.
- “Bust a Nut” (1994) – Released after a hiatus, this album received mixed reviews but still offers solid tracks like “Mama’s Fool” and “Need Your Lovin’.” It showcases a more experimental side of Tesla’s sound, incorporating elements of grunge and alternative rock. Ironically this is the album in their library that has aged the best.
- “Forever More” (2008) – This album marked Tesla’s return to their hard rock roots after a period of inactivity. While it didn’t achieve the same level of success as their earlier albums, it features strong tracks like “I Wanna Live” and “Breakin’ Free” that resonate with fans.
- “Into the Now” (2004) – Released after a lengthy break, this album presents a more modern rock sound with songs like “Caught in a Dream” and the title track “Into the Now.” It received positive reviews but didn’t attain significant commercial success.
- “Shock” (2019) – Tesla’s most recent studio album, “Shock,” showcases a more polished and modernized sound. It experiments with electronic elements and features tracks like “Tied to the Tracks” and “California Summer Song.” While it received mixed reviews, it demonstrates Tesla’s willingness to explore new musical directions.
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