Montrose (album)

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Montrose - -s-t-.jpg
Studio album by Montrose
Released October 17, 1973 (1973-10-17)
Studio Warner Bros. Recording Studios and Sunset Sound Recorders, Hollywood, California,
Wally Heider Studios, San Francisco, California (guitar overdubs)
Genre Hard rock, heavy metal, blues rock
Length 32:22
Label Warner Bros.
Producer Montrose & Ted Templeman
Montrose chronology
Paper Money
Ronnie Montrose chronology
They Only Come Out at Night
Paper Money
Sammy Hagar chronology
Paper Money
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4/5 stars[1]
Classic Rock 8/10 stars[2]
Record Collector 4/5 stars[3]

Montrose is the debut album by the California-based hard rock band Montrose released in 1973 on the Warner Bros. label. It was produced by Ted Templeman. The album marks the recording debut of vocalist Sammy Hagar, who would later achieve international success as a solo artist and member of Van Halen.


After having done session work for various musicians including Van Morrison, Herbie Hancock and Edgar Winter, Montrose was Ronnie Montrose's first record leading his own band which featured Denny Carmassi on drums, Bill Church on bass, and a then-unknown Sammy Hagar (at that time 'Sam Hagar') on vocals.

While considered a classic by many hard rock fans, tracks from the album received scant radio airplay, with "Rock Candy" and "Bad Motor Scooter" being notable exceptions. It has been reported that the band's label, Warner Bros., did not know how to market Montrose, and, already having the Doobie Brothers and Deep Purple to cover the rock and hard rock genres, saw the band as something of a redundancy on their roster of artists. Though the album was not a big seller upon its initial release, peaking at No. 133 on the U.S. Billboard chart, it eventually proved to be an international sleeper hit which over a period of several decades has sold in excess of one million copies, attaining platinum status. Some critics have arguably labeled it the "first American heavy metal album". Often cited as 'America's answer to Led Zeppelin', it is held to be highly influential amongst hard rock/heavy metal musicians including Iron Maiden, who have recorded and/or performed cover versions of songs from the album. "Space Station #5" was released as the B-side of their single "Be Quick or Be Dead" (1992).

Ronnie Montrose chiefly used a Gibson Les Paul, a Fender Bandmaster amp, and a Big Muff fuzzbox by Electro-Harmonix to record the Montrose album.[4]

"Make It Last" was covered by Van Halen in their early club days (available on Van Halen bootlegs).

The album was voted as the 4th best Metal Album of All Time by Kerrang! magazine in 1989.

Punk band Stiff Little Fingers used the riff from the "Space Station #5" for the introduction on their single "Suspect Device" (1978).

European release[edit]

In 1974, the album was released in Europe via Germany under the title Rock the Nation. This version featured a track listing which duplicated the U.S. release but featured a different front sleeve image that replaced the band's photo with that of a large-busted blonde girl sporting a pink see-through blouse.[5]

Track listing[edit]

Credits adapted from the album liner notes.[6]

Side one
  1. "Rock the Nation" (Ronnie Montrose) – 3:03
  2. "Bad Motor Scooter" (Sammy Hagar) – 3:41
  3. "Space Station #5" (Hagar, Montrose) – 5:18
  4. "I Don't Want It" (Hagar, Montrose) – 2:58
Side two
  1. "Good Rockin' Tonight" (Roy Brown) – 2:59
  2. "Rock Candy" (Denny Carmassi, Bill Church, Hagar, Montrose) – 5:05
  3. "One Thing on My Mind" (Hagar, Montrose, J. Sanchez) – 3:41
  4. "Make It Last" (Hagar) – 5:31




  1. ^ Rivadavia, Eduardo. "Montrose - Montrose review". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 2016-09-02. 
  2. ^ Makowski, Pete (February 2010). "Montrose - Montrose". Classic Rock. No. 141. p. 89. 
  3. ^ Jones, Tim (February 2010). "Montrose - Montrose". Record Collector. No. 372. Retrieved 2016-09-02. 
  4. ^ "Ronnie Montrose | Vintage Guitar® magazine". 2002-10-28. Retrieved 2012-03-02. 
  5. ^ "Welcome To The Number One Sammy Hagar Discography". Retrieved 2012-03-02. 
  6. ^ Montrose (LP sleeve). Montrose. Warner Bros. Records. 1973. BS 2740.