The Alice Cooper album written in a psychiatric institution

alice cooper

Alice Cooper defined every parent’s worst fear in the late 1960s. As the band gained their first followers on the road, they made it a point to put on the most disgusting stage spectacle they’d ever seen. It was with Cooper dismembering baby dolls before being slain after each night. Cooper was on a high at the moment. But it was only a matter of time until the rock and roll lifestyle caught up with him.

Cooper, on the other hand, never claimed to have been a heavy drug user during the band’s early years. When originally signed to Frank Zappa’s record company, Cooper only developed a drinking problem. He gained renown for indulging in liquor whenever he could. Throughout the 1970s, he maintained a natural buzz, with his love for excess only equaled by his predilection for penning huge hooks.

Cooper delivered the perfect reply to what the mainstream bands were doing on albums like Love It To Death and Killer. He molded himself into the ultimate rock and roll villain. Even though tickets for his gigs were flying off the shelves, it was only a matter of time. Only until the rest of the band grew tired of Cooper’s antics.

After finishing the album Muscle of Love, the band decided to split up. They eventually embarked on their projects and left Alice Cooper as a solo act. Rather than going back to the drawing board, Cooper went all-in on theatrics. He partnered with Bob Ezrin to produce the ultimate horror rock album, Welcome to My Nightmare.

The record would go on to become one of Cooper’s biggest wins. But he was losing his fight with alcohol. Cooper, who was becoming uncomfortably thin, would frequently vomit blood on tour. It was until his wife and Ezrin persuaded him to seek medical attention. Instead of standard treatment centers, the singer’s recovery procedure took place within a mental facility. He was astounded to be in the same straight-jacketed atmosphere he had written about in songs like “Ballad of Dwight Fry.”

With time to think, a freshly sober Cooper resurfaced. He was ready with a new set of songs inspired by his time in prison. It would be his second album, From the Inside. Working alongside Elton John’s longstanding collaborator Bernie Taupin, Cooper developed one of the most revealing concept albums of his career, dealing with many scenarios that may or may not have happened to him on tunes like the title track and ‘The Quiet Room‘.

‘How You Gonna See Me Now,’ his dedication to his wife, is the most intimate ballad on the album. Cooper’s love song, written after realizing how much time he had spent high, was about his anxiety about returning home and not knowing whether his wife would accept him once he was sober.

Cooper would emerge much more violent after cleaning up his act. He delivered songs that dipped their toes into new waves on albums like Zipper Catches Skin and Dada. While Cooper would later have to cope with an unhealthy cocaine addiction, From the Inside was the first glimpse at the original shock rocker finally coming clean.

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