New Rockstar Supernova video
Check out the new video for Rockstar Supernova’s single Headspin below:
Jorn Lande’s thoughts about Masterplan with Mike DiMeo
Jorn Lande Interview from Metal Express Radio:
You just had two releases out on Frontiers at the same time. How did you end up compiling the songs for those albums?
My debut album Starfire was more like a demo release to me. It had some cover tunes and some Jorn originals. It had some really good songs, but the whole production of that album wasn’t the best. Also there was a big gap between the style of the covers and my own songs on that album. Nothing is wrong with that. It’s just that some of those songs didn’t come out the way they should have sounded. I felt that, for example, “Abyss of Evil” and “Gate of Tears” had the quality of a classic Hard Rock/Metal song. I personally think that they are really cool songs, but didn’t sound too good. And this album is out of print now and the discussion was to reissue the first two albums Starfire and Worldchanger and continue from there, but I wanted to improve some of the songs. I needed a second chance. There are so many people that enjoy my newer albums, but didn’t know what I did in the past. Now they’ll be able to see my earlier songs too. I wanted to give some of the songs a facelift to improve them and make some of them sound big and massive. You can’t compare of how these songs sounded back then and how they sound now. It sounds a whole lot better. I love these songs. It’s the same with “Something Real” that is the opening track of The Gathering. It sounded more progressive … again, I don’t like the word “progressive,” but everybody’s talking about that today. Artistic, experimental, those are better words to describe it. It was the same with “One Day We’ll Put Out The Sun,” and both these songs were on Out To Every Nation. I had the same feeling about two songs after we recorded. They were cool and experimental and still good, but something about these songs could have been simplified to make them more to the point and make them more solid Hard Rock songs. That’s the vision I had when I listened back to the recordings. Just make it a more straightforward song and don’t overdo it with all these little details. And that’s what I did with that song and I think that it’s really better and more interesting this way. I also think the verses on “Something Real” are much better because before there were a lot of details in the playing all over the place. It’s different on the new version because it’s more simple. I like to use the words “less is more.” And, of course, I always get the urge to improve some of the songs that didn’t come out the way I wanted.
Did you re-record every song on The Gathering?
Some songs were re-recorded while other songs were just remixed. Except for putting Mr.Lofstad (Jørn Viggo Lofstad) onto the songs that he was not involved with before. Now, they are together with my other guitarist Tore, but before they played on different records and they didn’t even know each other. (Laughs) Now I got both of them like a Dream Team. They are such great guitarists and together they create this massive, incredible sound. Loftsad is a more clean player, a perfectionist in a way, very structured as a player, and Tore is more a Rock ’n’ Roller, to the bones guitarist. (Laughs) More rough and brutal in his expression, but with a great attitude. Together they are just great and I wanted them to be together on some of these older songs. And, it was just a natural thing to do, because some of the songs were re-recorded and some of them were remixed. They were just opened up and they were ready to put these guitars on top of everything in the end. We also recorded “Gonna Find the Sun.” That is a song that I originally wrote together with Micky Moody of Whitesnake and we released that song at the end of nineties.
With The Snakes?
Yeah, yeah! When I had the idea for that song I was originally thinking about having a more powerful Heavy Metal-sounding edgy guitar rather than the more old-fashioned half-dry Rock sound (laughs) … which is great when Micky plays that. That’s his style and his trademark and I love it. It’s just that I had this idea of making that sound heavier, and I’ve been thinking about that for a while. I think that song is much stronger than it was before. Before it sounded more like a filler on that The Snakes album. Now it’s a strong standout song.
Speaking of The Snakes … how is your relationship with Bernie these days?
Oh, I haven’t spoken to him for many years now. I have nothing against Bernie today. We had our differences, but it’s not just me. It was more people in that band. We had disagreements about the progress of the band at the time when we worked together. It’s no big deal. Bernie, Micky, and Don (Don Airey), they all did this before. If you go back ten years in time, I was younger still had some things to do. If I was to continue in that band and really build my future there then I would expect some investment to be made, like getting the right stage performance, accepting to play as a support band for a bigger, established band in the USA. I mean we got that offer a couple of times with massive American bands. We should have gone out and done some touring in order to establish us as a new band or something that is delivering the old Whitesnake-ish quality again. The band was really great-sounding, but when Whitesnake already existed and for us to come out there and play to break the barrier and not just be a Whitesnake cover band, some changes had to be made and investment had to be made, and the whole band had to be willing to put some hard work into it … and this wasn’t really possible at the time. And that’s the difference with the older generations. The “been there done that” attitude. Me and the drummer were hungry in that band. We really wanted to move forward and make things happen. That’s why we continued with our own stuff and left the band.
Have you seen Whitesnake play live last year?
Yeah, I saw them at Sweden Rock, but it wasn’t last year. I played myself at Sweden Rock with Masterplan that year. It was right after they decided to come back. It was one of their first festivals. It’s always great to see a band that is part of Rock ’n’ Roll history and something that inspired me when I grew up. David Coverdale was obviously a strong influence on me. But he’s not the only one … Ronnie James Dio is a name to mention. Paul Rodgers from Free was also very important to me. I listen to many singers, but I think those Classic Hard Tock singers are the best. I was asked how I take being compared to these great singers, and I just consider it to be a big compliment. They are the best and you don’t have many of these qualities on earth (laughs). I was lucky to be influenced by the best when I grew up and thanks to my father, I guess, who brought all these great albums to the house in the seventies. Of course, I listen to many other bands and you can hear their influence on my albums. I listen to Kansas a lot and you can hear their influence even in my songwriting. If you listen to some Masterplan songs, such as “Falling Sparrow,” you can hear that. I’ve tried a lot of directions with my voice, but I always stayed true in a way to hard Rock and Metal.
You mentioned about the two guitarists on The Gathering and there are also a lot of drummers taking part, but there’s no Hellhammer amongst them …
Hellhammer was very busy with his other bands and projects. Sometimes it is necessary to make some changes. We’re good friends. We don’t see each other too often, but he’s a good guy and a great drummer. You could also notice that the drummer from Out To Every Nation, Stian, only did a couple of songs on The Duke as my live drummer Willy “Wild” Bendiksen is more suitable for the Classic Hard Rock songs and the direction I’ve taken with The Duke. Personally, I feel that I have a strong line-up with these two guitarists and Willy on drums. I just feel that with The Duke I set the standard for how I should sound and how my concept should be. I think The Duke is one of the best albums I ever did. Might not be an experimental or a revolutionary album, but shows how strong the line-up is, how simple and straight-to-the-point the songwriting is. I think we had a solid hard-rocking album that really has everything and is easy to understand. I was always experimenting with musical landscapes to find my own way of doing this. I think I don’t have to do it anymore as I found my way of expressing as a singer and I think my Classic Hard Rock roots are my best performances. That’s when I’m sounding really good and that’s when I have good control. I can sing with power and still have intensity and feeling and heart and I can really be good live as well. Touring a lot over the last couple of years I performed a lot of songs where I had to change the singing style many times and people thought I was doing it great. They said I’m a versatile singer. Still, I don’t feel like doing that anymore. I prefer the regular Hard Rock type singing.
You seem to enjoy doing cover songs a lot …
Yeah, I have a lot of favorite songs that I would still like to do. I like to write my own stuff as well. Some of these cover songs are important to me because they influenced me as I grew up. Some of these songs I played many times live and I always felt that it would be great to release some of them. I think I could make it from Volume 1 to Volume 10 if I wanted to record all my favorites (laughs), which I actually have been thinking about! I’ve been thinking about how to do it without spending all my energy and all my time doing it, because I want to spend my time on writing my own stuff. I’m creative all the time, I have a lot of ideas that I have to write down and work on. Working on cover songs is good too, but doing it too much destroys the ability for being creative and I don’t want that to happen.
Is there any Norwegian band that you would cover?
If I would cover a Norwegian artist? That’s very difficult. There aren’t many Norwegian artists that I would like to cover. There was one band that my father used to play in. The band was based around a keyboardist that was from Hungary named Eddy Zoltán and the band’s name was EZ Group. They released a nice double album in the early seventies. It was really good quality with Norwegian lyrics and the songwriting was incredible. Some of these songs were on the charts in Norway at the time. My father who was the singer there left the music industry really early. He was about 27-28 when he decided to work more on a hobby basis. But, that album they did together had some really good songs to cover. Maybe it’s personal because it meant a lot to me as I’ve heard it as a kid. But, even today I hear how strong the melodies and the lyrics are on that album. It’s almost impossible to find that record today. You could say it’s kind of like in the family (laughs). Of course, there are many great Norwegian artists, but most of the ones I like are dead. They are lyricists and composers.
Edvard Grieg for one …
Yeah, yeah. Guys like him. There are so many great artists from the old days that wrote great songs with such powerful and touching lyrics and poems.
What is your favorite song from Unlocking the Past?
Not sure I can pick a favorite song. We played both “Perfect Strangers” and “Cold Sweat” live several times. “Cold Sweat” is a very simple Rock song that is fun to play live. Every time we play that on stage we feel very good and the band is kicking ass and really rocking. With that song you deliver something that is the essence of Rock ’n’ Roll. It might not be as interesting on the record as it is live. It’s just the magic that happens to the band and the crowd during that song live.
Does this cover album cover all the cover songs you did?
(laughs) There’s always some songs that never get released. For this album, I’ve taken some of the songs that have never been released before and some of the other songs, and remixed the way we did with The Gathering. I don’t think there are more secret songs. The thing with the unreleased songs is that for some reason I wasn’t satisfied with them or didn’t approve them before, that’s why they were never released. Many of the songs were considered as leftovers or potential bonus tracks for certain territories. But, then as years go by you listen to these songs again and say, “Oh that song is great, we never finished that, did we?” And, you suddenly start to discover that these songs are part of your history and they actually don’t sound that bad. The acceptance level changes as years go by as well, and you change as a person. Also, I think the perfectionist in me is different now. I listen more objectively and neutral these days. The most important thing is to give everything when you do it. These songs are basically songs from the treasure chest. It’s also something the record label suggested. They didn’t like the idea of a double CD box. The original idea was to do The Gathering as a double CD, including some of these cover songs. I think in the end it was a good thing to separate these covers from the Jorn originals and put them out as separate releases.
Mentioning the label, both albums are on Frontiers Records. Are you back with them or still with AFM?
Well, Frontiers released some of my earlier work and they also released Millenium and the Allen/Lande album The Battle. By the way, we just finished another album, me and Russell Allen. That is being mixed as we speak and hopefully the album will be out in the spring. The title for that record is Revenge. But, back to the labels … Frontiers always worked with me throughout the years and released some of my stuff and some of the bands I worked with. So, you can say that our relationship goes back many years now. So, the release of these albums doesn’t automatically mean a change of labels. I will probably work again with Frontiers in the future and they might release new Jorn material in the future, I don’t know.
So how about this new Jorn material? Is there anything in the works?
There’s nothing apart from the fact that I’m writing some songs. That’s the only thing I can tell about it now. I have most of the material written. Not completely finished, but it’s there. So, the new Jorn album should be done in the next year. As for the musical direction, it’ll be like The Duke or maybe even slightly darker. Some of the songs are almost 100% done and I’m very happy with them. So, I’ll definitely have a new album recorded in 2007.
For your European Tour this spring, what will the set list look like?o:p>
I think the main core will be Jorn songs. You’ll hear a couple of songs from The Duke and also from Worldchanger and Out To Every Nations, definitely. We will also throw in one Beyond Twilight song and also one Masterplan song. We already did “Soulburn” a couple of times live, which has slightly different arrangements compared to the original. It sounds cool. More massive with two guitar players and rougher since we haven’t used that much keyboards. People want to hear things. We talked about The Snakes before, and you always meet people out there who also remember that band. Maybe they came out and saw us live when we toured here or they have the album releases and they would like to hear some stuff, so maybe we’ll throw in a couple of covers as well. We might also do a Whitesnake medley.
What song would you play off the Millenium album? What is your favorite song you did with that band?
That would definitely be “Hourglass.” That’s my favorite song on that album. That’s the strongest and most powerful there. The other songs are great, but they are more average still. They have a strong AOR-ish touch, which is good, nothing wrong with that, but I just feel there are a lot more songs with that kind of songwriting rather than epic songs like “Hourglass.”
Will you also play at least one ARK song?
Oh yeah, I forgot about that. Not sure if we’ll do it, but we’ve already been doing “Noose” from Burn the Sun.
Do you think that album contains one of your best vocal performances?
Yeah, you’re probably right. At least experimental and diverse.
It’s a crazy album.
Yeah, thank you. I agree with you. It’s kind of like over the top or beyond (laughs). We pushed it far when we did that record in all aspects. Both personally when we wrote everything, how deep into we went into the music, and what we spent both time-wise and money-wise to complete that album.
Do you think you should get back together with Tore (Tore Østby) and finish the unreleased third album?
(laughs) Yeah, you never know what’s gonna happen. I don’t think I’ll return with ARK in a band setting. But, sometimes just to do a record to kind of complete something that was never fulfilled. It could be possible to do that. I’m open to do that, but I’m not sure I would go on tour with the band again. But, just to write and do the record together, that could be possible. That would be a cool thing. But, you’d have to talk to the other guys as well. It was always a democratic thing and everyone has to like it.
Did you consider going back to Masterplan now that Uli (Uli Kusch, drummer) left?
No, not really. We already had disagreements musically of how to approach the future and how to write the third album. We were good friends, it’s just that we couldn’t make a compromise on how to do this together. And I was focused on writing the song material in a different way than before. For the first two albums, we had the music composed first and sometimes Uli and Roland would write a lot of stuff and give me the music on tapes. Then I would hear all these musical compositions and I would start creating melodies and lyrics that would fit the music. But, I wanted to change that because I felt that this wasn’t really natural for me as a singer. Some great songs came out of it and great productions, but some of the songs were really natural for me. Of course, there were some songs where it blended really well and it became magical, but all in all it was important to me to get the music built up more around my vocals. Also, to sit down together with Roland and write good songs based on guitars and vocal melodies. To build everything from the opposite way and try to make more straightforward songs. I didn’t like the fact that we were to continue making intricate, symphonic, big arrangements all the time. I wanted just to have real Rock ’n’ Roll in the band. I’m open for everything, I’m not hard to work with, it’s just that I prefer the more “to the point” songs. I also noticed when we are on stage that we never had the chance to really play as a band. We couldn’t really play much around, because we had all these keyboard things going on, we had these samplers on that added to the music and all these things don’t appeal to me that much anymore. I want to just to go out on stage and have bass, drums, and guitars and have a really rocking show and play good songs with heart and feeling. I want to feel confident on stage and in control. I just felt lately that it became a struggle for me more than a good vibe. But, as I said, I’m not hard to deal with, I just wanted a compromise there. Of course, Masterplan will always be Masterplan and Uli would always play complex drums and Roland would always play his style.
Do you think they’ll succeed with the new singer and drummer?
I think they have a good band now. Mike DiMeo is a really good singer and Mike Terrana is a great drummer. We all go through different line-ups in our bands, it’s just about how interesting you can make it for the market. I’ve heard a couple of tracks from the forthcoming album and they were good songs. It’s difficult to say. I wish them all the best and I hope everyone gets what they deserve and enjoys success. I really hope that they’ll succeed with the new line-up and I’m sure they will, because they already have a good tour with Saxon coming up. It’s a long tour. During this one tour, they will probably play more than I would play in two years. (Laughs)
DORO schedules dates in the United States
Legendary German metal queen DORO has updated her tour itinerary for her upcoming North American and European tour in June-August. Her schedule is now shaping up as follows:
Jun. 04 – Allentown, PA – Crocodile Rock
Jun. 05 – New York, NY – BB King’s
Jun. 06 – Hartford, CT – Webster Theater
Jun. 08 – Poughkeepsie, NY – The Loft
Jun. 09 – Bedford, NH – Mark’s Rock Club
Jun. 10 – West Springfield, VA – Jaxx
Jun. 12 – Montreal, QUE – Fou Founes Elecriques
Jun. 13 – Toronto, ONT – Funhouse
Jun. 14 – Cleveland, OH – Peabody’s
Jun. 15 – Chicago, IL – Pearl Room
Jun. 16 – St.Paul, MN – Station 4
Jun. 17 – Topeka, KS – Static Bar
Jun. 18 – Denver, CO – Larmier Lounge
Jun. 20 – Los Angeles, CA – Whiskey A Go Go
Jun. 21 – Phoenix, AZ – The Clubhouse
Jun. 22 – Alburquerque, NM – TBA
Jun. 23 – San Antonio, TX – Sanctuary
Jun. 24 – Houston, TX – Meridian Red Room
New L.A. Guns Single
The L.A. GUNS version featuring Tracii Guns on guitar, Jeremy Guns on bass, Chad Stewart on drums and Paul Black on vocals has posted its brand new single, “I Do”, at its MySpace page. Also available is a live version of “I Do”, taken from the “The Riff Hits The Fan” CD. Both songs are available for download for 99 cents each at this location.
Paul Black co-wrote L.A. GUNS’ fan favorites and Nickey Alexander played all drum tracks on the band’s classic self-titled debut album for Polygram Records. The group released a CD, titled “The Black List”, last year, which is a collection of previously unreleased recordings of L.A. GUNS standards from 1986 and 1987, and is currently recording new material for release later in 2007.
The cool thing about Private Line is they have a sound that is a cross between 80′s and today’s hard rock. It is a sound that I think would appeal to most hard rock fans from both generations. Not all of the tracks are heavy on this disc. Some fall into an a pop metal/ pop rock vein, while staying more towards the rock side of the fence.
There are plenty of tracks to like here, and very little, if any filler. My current favorite tracks are Evel Knievel Factor, Broken Promised Land, Alive and Billion Star Hotel.
I think this is the kind of disc that will appeal to a lot of people, if they give it a couple of listens. You can find Evel Knievel Factor at NEH Records.com.
Here is the first video from this disc:
Broken Promised Land
Rating: Out of 10
- Prelude for the Daredevils
- Evel Knievel Factor
- Broken Promised Land
- Sound Advice
- The Sindicate
- Prozac Nation
- Gods of Rewind
- Billion Star Hotel
Saliva is back with their 5th release, Blood Stained Love Story. Saliva has upgraded their sound for this record. This disc has more of a main stream sound than the nu-metal songs of their past. I decided to give this disc a look due to Saliva’s excellent debut at 19th on the Billboard charts. I have liked some of their songs in the past, and “Ladies and Gentleman” is a song that you can not ignore.
I am betting that you will hear quite a few cuts off of this “Blood Stained Love Story” on mainstream rock radio. This reminds me a lot of Stone Temple Pilot at times, but then at times ventures into something completely different.
I tend to lean towards the harder edged tracks like “Ladies and Gentleman”, “King of the Stereo”,”Twister” and “Black Sheep”. The Nickelback like “Starting Over” is also pretty good.
I found the slower tracks some boring, and I didn’t think there was enough to help Saliva stand out from the countless other sound-a-like acts on the radio.
This disc probably will not set fans of big hair hard rock on fire, but if you enjoy some of the groups enjoying main stream rock radio success today like Hinder, Nickelback and Daughtry, you will want to check this disc out. Is this Saliva’s best CD? No, not by a long shot, but those with an open mind will find some tunes to enjoy.
You can listen to some of the bands new tracks here!
- Ladies and Gentleman
- Broken Sunday
- Never Gonna Change
- King of the Stereo
- One More Chance
- Going Under
- Black Sheep
- Starting Over
- Here With You
- Is It You (Bonus Track)
- Write Your Name (Bonus Track)
Josey Scott – Vocals
Wayne Swinny – Guitars
Jon Montoya – Guitars
Dave Novotny – Bass
Paul Crosby – Drums
I hear instances in Kidd Blue’s music, that reminds me of Ratt, XYZ, and some Dokken. Bobby Blue’s vocals fit this band’s music well. The band backing him up, Steve Barton on Guitars, Mark Dubin on drums, and Robert “Sox” Canchola on bass are as good as they come. The production on this disc could have been better, however the CD states that some of the tracks here are 16 years old and were converted from analog tape. I have still heard a lot of discs far worse than this one.
My current favorite tracks are Big Trouble, Restless Eyes, and Rocket Roulette. Fans of 80′s hard rock ought to give this a look. I enjoyed this disc, and I think you will too!
You can hear a few of their tracks on Kidd Blue’s myspace page, or check out the couple of tracks I posted below.
Rating: Out of 10
- Big Trouble
- Crimes of the Heart
- Crystal Tears
- Restless Eyes
- Hold Me
- Rocket Roulette
- Midnight Train
- Feel Your Touch
- Fatal Attraction
If you want to hear a band that knows how to do 80′s Style Hard Rock right, you need to give Crash Diet’s, Rest In Sleaze a listen. Crashdiet has a sound that is similar to Shotgun Messiah in their prime, and maybe a little bit of Zan Clan. This disc is full of fist-pumping, kick ass rock and roll.
Crashdiet has 4 hit singles in Sweden from this disc, Riot In Everyone, Knokk ‘Em Down, Breakin the Chainz, and It’s a Miracle. This another example of excellent music being released over seas that never gets any attention in the United States!
Sadly, In January 2006, vocalist Dave Lepard committed suicide after being in a deep depression, so will never know how far this band could have gone with this lineup. Judging from this debut effort, they could have been huge globably.
The tunes here speak for themselves. It is great stuff that no hard rock or sleaze metal fan should be without!
You can still pick this up reasonably from CD Inzane. Buy It! You wont be disappointed.
Knokk ‘Em Down
Riot in Everyone
Queen Obscene (69 Shots) – LIVE
Breakin the Chainz
Needle in Your Eye – LIVE
It’s A Miracle
Back on Trakk
Rating:Out of 10
- Knokk ‘Em Down
- Riot In Everyone
- Queen Obscene (69 Shots)
- Breakin’ The Chainz
- Needle in Your Eye
- Out of Line
- It’s A Miracle
- Straight Out of Hell
- Back On Trakk
HELL YEAH! New band, new tracks
Former Pantera Drummer Vinnie Paul’s new band, Hell Yeah has a new disc coming out in April. You can hear two new tracks here!
Brett Michaels new tracks
New teaser tracks from Poison front man’s upcoming solo CD can be heard here!
Led Zeppelin reunion heating up?
According to Toronto-based radio station Q107, these Led Zeppelin reunion rumors are really heating up. Original bassist John Paul Jones was seen at Trinifold Management in London, England recently with singer Robert Plant and guitarist Jimmy Page apparently discussing plans for as reunion that will feature late drummer John Bonham’s son Jason on the skins. The last time the original three performed was on July 13, 1985 at the Live Aid concert at JFK Stadium, Philadelphia, for a short set featuring drummers Tony Thompson (Chic) and Phil Collins (Genesis). Jones has been noticeably “absent” during Page/Plant’s musical activities post-Led Zeppelin.
Scorpions working on new disc
SCORPIONS arrived in Los Angeles in October to begin recording their new album with songwriter/producer Desmond Child. Child, who has worked with such high-profile pop/rock artists as AEROSMITH, BON JOVI, ALICE COOPER, KISS, RICKY MARTIN, CHER, MICHAEL BOLTON and BONNIE TYLER, recently worked with Michael Beinhorn, Meat Loaf and Jim Steinman as co-producer on MEAT LOAF‘s “Bat Out Of Hell 3: The Monster Is Loose” CD, and has also been mentioned as MÖTLEY CRÜE singer Vince Neil‘s likely collaborator on Neil‘s upcoming solo album.
SCORPIONS‘ latest album, “Unbreakable”, was released in the U.S. in June 2004 through Sanctuary Records. The CD was recorded at Peppermint Park Studio in Hannover, Germany and was mixed at Wisseloord studios in Hilversum, Holland.
Check out the new video from Big Cock. This video has had over 20,000 views on You Tube! Crazy!!
Happy Birthday Vince Neil. Vince turned 46 today!
OZZFEST Announcement – Free in 2007?!!
|OZZFEST 2007…FOR FREE - Feb. 6, 2007|
“This will change everybody’s impression of the way touring in the summer in America should be.” — Sharon Osbourne
Imagine a day of wall-to-wall hard rock.
Imagine the world’s greatest headliner sharing a bill with cutting edge new artists.
Imagine if this brass-knuckled beast was hellbent on coming to your town.
Imagine this earth-pounding event…FOR FREE.
2007 will forever mark the year Ozzfest spiked the concert industry’s punch and gave every head-banging American kid a reason to strap on an air guitar with the historic announcement that tickets to the summer’s premiere touring concert festival won’t cost fans a dime.
Testing one, two, three…
That’s right, Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne and tour producer Live Nation broke the news today at the Concert Industry Consortium in Los Angeles that their 12th annual hard rock spectacular — a 25-date extravaganza launching July 7 in Los Angeles — is pulling the plug on ticket prices and giving the power back to the fans calling this summer’s Ozzfest “FreeFest.” The other Ozzfestcities as of now are San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Denver, Albuquerque, Phoenix, Dallas, San Antonio, Kansas City, St Louis, Chicago, Indianapolis, Columbus, Pittsburgh, New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Hartford, Charlotte, Atlanta, West Palm Beach, Nashville. Note: a final confirmed list of cities and dates is forthcoming.
“For the last few years,” says Sharon, “ticket prices have steadily climbed as artists demand more and more money for summer tours. We certainly want everybody to make money, however we also want the kids to be able to afford to come out and have an incredible experience. If we continued with the traditional touring festival model, we would have no choice but to raise ticket prices again this year.”
Cited as “one of rock’s biggest juggernauts” in the cover feature of Sunday’s New York Times‘ “Arts and Leisure” section (6/25/06), Ozzfest and Live Nation will turn to sponsors to provide added support for the festival’s new incarnation. This summer’s Ozzfest will provide select sponsors with a unique opportunity to engage fans one-on-one utilizing one of music’s best known brands.
“We’re reaching the same point we did years ago when kids no longer wanted to pay for overpriced CDs,” compares Sharon. “As a result, they found alternative ways of getting music. That’s what’s happening with summer touring in this country, it’s out-pricing itself. We started this and we want to keep it and we want to make it bigger and bigger each year by getting bigger sponsors to be involved with the festival and underwriting the festival. That’s what it’s about.”
“For the past 11 years, music fans have made Ozzfest the most successful and enduring rock music festival in the United States,” said Jason Garner, Live Nation President of North American Concerts. “What better way to say ‘Thank You’ to the music fans who have made this possible than inviting them to attend Ozzfest for free.”
To gain entry into the event, fans will go to http://www.ozzfest.com or http://www.livenation.com to find links that will direct them to special sponsor sites where tickets can be secured. More details regarding the process are forthcoming.
As Ozzfest‘s founder and namesake, Ozzy will make his triumphant return to the headlining position on this year’s mainstage after surprising fans last year by performing on the down-and-dirty second stage at a handful of dates. Audiences can expect the Prince of Darkness to unveil new songs from his forthcoming studio album, Ozzy‘s first disc of new material since 2001. While the rest of the in-progress bill is under wraps, Sharon points out, “we have bands committed, but we’re hoping that after today’s announcement we’ll have a whole influx of artists who want to be a part of something this ground breaking. We know there aren’t any major headlining acts that would tour all summer for nothing, but we’re confident we can turn some of the genre’s biggest bands on to what we’re doing and have them come out to play a date or two. If they’re in town and want the rush of performing in front of 20,000 frenzied kids, they’re more than welcome to join us. They can sell their t-shirts, CDs and whatever else they’ve got. They’re also welcome to book their own shows in local venues on the day of Ozzfest. I’m not stopping them. People have to be creative and think of alternatives.”
Since 1996, Ozfest has been a virtual breeding ground for rising bands. The festival has been instrumental in igniting the careers of platinum-selling artists like SYSTEM OF A DOWN, DISTURBED, LINKIN PARK, INCUBUS, SLIPKNOT, QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE and GODSMACK. Along with supporting bands on the rise including AVENGED SEVENFOLD, MUDVAYNE, LAMB OF GOD, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE and LACUNA COIL, among others.
“Ozzfest was created to keep this genre of music alive by showcasing new talent,” states Sharon. “You better believe we’re going to keep perpetuating that by hand-picking compelling new bands that are hungry for Ozzfest‘s career-making exposure.”
Dean Guitars wasted no time using Dave Mustaine and Megadeth to promote their guitars. Check out their website with the cool new intro here!
Van Halen has opened up a new Myspace account for their upcoming 2007 tour. The link is www.myspace.com/vanhalen2007
The Erotics has posted a new song, “It’s True” off of their upcoming disc, 30 Seconds Over To You, here!
You can hear the new country tracks from Bon Jovi below:
The new Masterplan video, for the track Lost and Gone featuring Mike DiMeo on vocals, can be seen below:
What did you guys think of the Prince Superbowl Halftime Show? I actually thought it was one of the better halftime shows I have seen in quite a while. I can’t say that I have ever seen anyone play the guitar in a down pour like that. I thought Prince sounded amazingly well, and was a little surprized how he hasn’t seemingly aged in 25 years.
Anyway, at least there was no controversy, and no flashed boobs this year.
Let me know what you thought about it!
Updated 2/7/07….I guess for copyright reasons, the videos keep getting taken down from You Tube, and people keep putting them back just as fast. The videos below should work now.
Prince Superbowl half time show video
Nightbreaker features everything a hard rock fan could want: great guitar work, excellent vocals, and well written songs.
On this CD, you will find a blistering cover of the Deep Purple track Burn, as well as an amazing reworking of Outlaw, from the classic Riot disc, Fire Down Under. The rest of tracks are all killer hard rock tracks with no filler material, and no sticky sweet ballads. Mark Reale’s guitar playing shines all throughout this disc, as does Mike DiMeo’s vocals.
If you enjoyed Army of One, you ought to give Nightbreaker a look. This is another great disc from Riot. All hard rock and metal fans are going to find something to like on this must own disc. Buy It!!
Rating: Out of 10
Enjoy the video below, for the title track, Nightbreaker.
- In Your Eyes
- Medicine Man
- Silent Scream
- Magic Maker
- I’m on the Run
I don’t think most of the music buying public out there knows that there is a new release by former Guns N’ Roses Guitar player, Izzy Stradlin. This was released on a very limited pressing in 2005 on one of Izzy’s fan sites, and to ITunes in September of 2006.
This disc is a blues infested slab of quality rock and roll. There are quite a few catchy tunes on this disc including, Bomb, Snafu, Hell Song, and Just Don’t Know. The style of guitar playing on this disc reminds quite a bit of Guns and Roses in places, but with Izzy on vocals, the music sounds completely different, but not in a bad way by any means.
I think this disc will appeal to all of the hard rockers out there, as well as old G N’ R fans. Check out the videos below and let me know what you think!
Rating: Out of 10
- Hell Song
- Rollin On
- Just Don’t Know
- Chop Away
- Win U Lose
- On the Run
- Like A Dog
The Book of Heavy Metal is the first release by Dream Evil that follows the NWOBH style. I enjoyed the United disc by Dream Evil so much I decided to find the disc that preceeded it. I heard a lot of good things about this disc, and it was not unfounded.
Much like United, this disc starts off with a blistering metal anthem, the title track (The Book of Heavy Metal) that will get in your head and wont leave any time soon. This is a classic heavy metal track in its finest form!
Into the Moonlight keeps the pace going with its heavy riffs and great vocals by Niklas Isfeldt. The Sledge is a cool metal anthem. The writing here isn’t the greatest, but I still like this track a lot.
No Way cranks the tempo way up. This track features excellent guitars by the tandem of Gus G. and Fredrik Nordstrom. This is killer stuff!
Crusader’s Anthem starts off with a Maiden like bass riff, but blasts off into a heavy, melodic Europe like masterpiece with chugging guitars and great solos.
Let’s Make Rock is another major anthem that will have you singing along in no time. Tired M.O.M. (Man or a Mouse) is a track that I get into more each time I listen to it. Sure its has kind of cheesy lyrics, but it is still a fun track to listen to.
The Mirror reminds me a whole lot of Judas Priest. This is another track that will get you head banging in no time.
The guitars on Only For the Night are nothing short of superb, leading into the Book of Heavy Metal’s lone ballad, Unbreakable Chain. After hearing the rest of the tracks on this disc, I was beginning to wonder if this band could slow it down. I can happily say that this track is one of the many highlights on this disc.
There are a couple of tracks that I could not get into on this disc, but for the most part most of the tracks on the Book of Heavy Metal range between good and great. Heavy Metal fans need to give this one a look!
Rating: Out of 10
Here is the video for The Book of Heavy Metal! Enjoy!
- The Book of Heavy Metal
- Into the Moonlight
- The Sledge
- No Way
- Crusader’s Anthem
- Let’s Make Rock
- Chosen Twice
- The Mirror
- Only For the Night
- Unbreakable Chain
This disc is the debut by the quartet of Shaun Williamson on vocals, Marcus Wolfe on guitars, Todd Ronning on bass, and Rick Fedyk on drums.
Legendary producer Jimmy Johnson said King Karma is the best rock product he has worked on since Lynyrd Skynyrd back in the 70′s. Judging from what I can hear on this disc, he may be right.
King Karma has a bluesy southern hard rock sound. Former Atlanta Rhythm Section and Backbone Slide vocalist, Shaun Williamson has the perfect voice to front this band. After giving this CD a listen for the first time, I thought King Karma is quite similar to Skynyrd in sound. Considering how very few rock bands approach music in this fashion in this day and age, King Karma is a breath of fresh air. Whether its a ballad or a rocker, they play it, and play it well!
There are several stand outs on this disc including Breathe, Into the Everlast, Mama’s Pride, Heavens Burning, I’m Listening, Midnight Sunshine. Great vocals and killer guitar solos are plentiful on this disc. This is a disc for all southern rock fans, and hard rockers alike! Skynyrd fans will eat this up! Check it out!!
Rating:Out of 10
For a brief intro to King Karma, check out the King Karma Press Kit Video below:
- Blue Monday
- Into the Everlast
- Revolution Man
- Mama’s Pride
- Twilight Child
- Heaven’s Burning
- I’m Listening
- Shake My Bones
- Don’t Take the World Out On Me
- Midnight Sunshine
- Devil’s Road
I hesitated picking up the latest disc by Lordi, but I could not pass up the horror theme of this band. I heard about all of the special guests on this disc (Dee Snider, and Jay Jay French from Twisted Sister, Bruce Kullick from KISS, and Udo Dirkschneider from Accept) and I decided that I had to give this one a try. If you can get over the vocals by Lordi, which sounds like a cross between Rob Zombie and Mandy Lion from WWIII, then you may like this disc.
The music is actually quite good on this disc, and there are several stand out tracks including Deadite Girls Gone Wild, Who’s Your Daddy, Chainsaw Buffet, and Hard Rock Halleujah.
I found a bunch of videos for this disc, so I will let the music do the talking for me. If you like good melodic heavy metal. Check this disc out!
Deadite Girls Gone Wild
Who’s Your Daddy
Hard Rock Hallelujah
It Snows In Hell (Live!)
Bringing Back the Balls to Rock
Night of the Loving Dead
- SCG3 Special Report (Intro with Dee Snider)
- The Deadite Girls Gone Wild
- The Kids Who Want to Play With The Dead
- It Snows In Hell
- Who’s Your Daddy
- They Only Come Out At Night
- Chainsaw Buffet
- Good To Be Bad
- Bringing Back the Balls of Rock
- The Night of the Loving Dead
- Hard Rock Hallelujah
- Mr. Lordi – vocals
- Amen – guitar
- OX – bass
- Kita – drums, vocals
- Awa – keyboards, vocals
More Megadeth News from Dave Mustaine
Megadeth will do a 45 minute opening set on the Heaven and Hell tour.
You can see a video for the Gears of War track off the up and coming United Abominations below.
United Abominations will be released on May 8th, 2007 by Roadrunner records.
Tracks titles include:
- Gears of War
- United Abominations
- Burnt Ice
- Never Walk Alone
QUIET RIOT frontman Kevin Dubrow has revealed that bad interpersonal relationships were largely to blame for the breakup of the band’s classic lineup. In an interview with “The Classic Metal Show” (which can be heard at this location), DuBrow lashes out at QUIET RIOT‘s former bassist Rudy Sarzo (also DIO, ex-OZZY OSBOURNE), while also admitting that the last few years of the classic lineup’s existence were riddled with disagreements, ultimately causing the group virtually split in two. An excerpt from the interview follows:
The Classic Metal Show: I know you have a certain affection for the ’60s and ’70s stuff, as [is evident on] your solo album. You seem to be going in that direction now because it is you and Frankie [Banali, drums], and you have a good working relationship as well as a friendship. You two seemed to be able to agree on that (direction).
Kevin Dubrow: “Exactly. The thing is, with the old band, I got along great with Carlos [Cavazo, guitar]. Frankie and him didn’t even speak. The less said about Rudy the better. Obviously, we were not friends and we did not enjoy each other’s company musically or personally. So, when you are in a band like that, the productivity is going to be somewhat limited.”
The Classic Metal Show: Sure, well now that you two have control…
Kevin Dubrow: “Yeah. We don’t have the distraction of people that have their own agendas. We did ask Carlos to rejoin, but he wasn’t interested unless it was with Rudy. That’s…that’s…That’s pretty much like asking me about Spencer [Proffer, ex-QUIET RIOT producer]. That would happen the day that hell does freeze over!”
QUIET RIOT‘s latest album, “Rehab”, was issued in the United States in early October via Chavis Records. The European release was handled by the U.K.-based Demolition Records.
For the new recordings, Kevin DuBrow and Frankie Banali were joined by Tony Franklin on bass (ex-THE FIRM and BLUE MURDER), session guitarist Neil Citron, and the voice of rock, Glenn Hughes (ex-DEEP PURPLE and BLACK SABBATH), who performed a vocal duet with Kevin DuBrow on the classic 1969 SPOOKY TOOTH song “Evil Woman” and also contributed the bass track for that song as well.
QUIET RIOT original members DuBrow and Banali recently reunited with Alex Grossi and Chuck Wright (bass) to tour worldwide in support of the “Rehab” release.
Former VINNIE VINCENT INVASION singer Robert Fleischman will release a new solo album, “Look at the Dream”, in March through Spirt Box Music. For those who don’t want to wait, the CD will be available on iTunes next month.
Fleischman first came to prominence in the late 1970s as the original lead vocalist for multi-platinum rock band JOURNEY. His powerful singing voice and his undeniable songwriting talent helped the band make the transition from a rock-fusion band to the commercial success that they enjoyed from that point on. He wrote their first hit single, “Wheel in the Sky”, as well as other familiar JOURNEY songs. From there, Robert went for something totally out of character and joined former KISS guitarist Vinnie Vincent in the VINNIE VINCENT INVASION. Since then, Robert has been focused more on his songwriting than performing skills, having worked as a staff songwriter at Almo Irving Publishing and then as a composer of musical scores for TV and film projects. His solo performing career has been successful starting with the Jimmy Iovine-produced “Perfect Stranger” album on Arista which featured former JOURNEY bandmate Neal Schon on guitar. He has also recorded for Epic with his band, CHANNEL, and has released a variety of albums in a variety of genres — all of which are testament to the broad range of Robert‘s talent.
You can see the Robert Fleischman video from VVI below:
Day 8 in the 10 Days of Jorn brings the sophomore effort, Aeronautics by the Jorn Lande led, power metal group Masterplan.
I love CD’s that are easy to review and Aeronautics is one of those. This disc is far more melodic than the debut, and does not fail to deliver at any point throughout the disc.
Crimson Rider will hook you immediately with is upbeat drumming and amazing guitar work by Roland Grapow.
Back For My Life is an impressive song that should have been a huge hit in the U.S.
Masterplan turns back to its power metal roots by cranking up the tempo on the anthemic Wounds. I’m Not Afraidis a majestic rocker that continues to amaze me every time I listen to it. Headbanger’s Ballroom is melodic yet very heavy. I have replayed this one several times.
After This War is a mid tempo number with excellent vocals by Jorn, and more flying fretwork by Roland Grapow. Into The Arenais another classic Jorn Lande Anthem at its best! The guitar riff on Dark For the Dying is quite infectious. Falling Sparrowfeatures another killer vocal by Jorn.
Black in the Burn is an awesome epic track clocking in just shy of 10 minutes. This song will take you through great melodies, and incredible guitar solos before finishing with a heaviness that will kick you in the ass. This is the most impressive song I have ever heard to close out a disc. My copy of Aeronautics came with a limited edition track Treasure World, which is a cool track itself.
Aeronautics is easily one of the top 5 metal CD’s of 2005. You owe it to yourself to pick this one up!
Back For My Life
Rating:Out of 10
- Crimson Rider
- Back For My Life
- I’m Not Afraid
- Headbanger’s Ballroom
- After This War
- Into the Arena
- Dark For the Dying
- Falling Sparrow
- Black Is the Burn
- Treasure World* (Limited Edition Bonus Track)
Check it out Here!
Day 7 of the 10 Days of Jorn, brings us to the third solo disc by Jorn Lande, Out to Every Nation.
This disc features a new lineup of musicians includingJorn Viggo Lofstad (Pagan’s Mind) on Guitar, Magnus Rosen (Hammerfall) on Bass and Stian Kristoffersen (Pagan’s Mind) on Drums.
Out to Every Nation is not my favorite disc in my Jorn Lande collection. After the stellar release Worldchanger, this disc did not live up to my expectations. I kept looking for a track that jumped out at me like Christine or Sunset Station, and it just never materialized.
With that being said, this is still an above average disc, and an above average disc from Jorn is usually ten times better than anything else out there.
There are a few noteworthy moments on Out to Every Nation worth mentioning.
Young Forever is a scorching hot track to start this disc off with. The title track Out to Every Nation is another cool song in the vein of Whitensnake. Something Real features some excellent guitar work by Jorn Viggo.
Living With Wolves reminds me of a cross between DIO and Dream Theater which is very cool. The Jorn Viggo guitar solo on Vision Eyes is superb.
The Whitesnakish Rock Spirit and the awesome guitars on Through Day and Night are growing on me each time I hear them.
The Japanese bonus track Big is awesome! This track sounds like it was a left over from Worldchanger.
This is the type of disc that needs to grown on you with a few listens. It gets progressively better with each spin. Jorn Lande sounds great, as does the band backing him up. This is a disc that may get over looked over time, but there is enough decent material on Out to Every Nation making this a disc worth picking up. I recommend the Japanese version that comes with the bonus track and the video below!
Check out the video below for Living With Wolves!
Living With Wolves
Rating: Out of 10
- Young Forever
- Out To Every Nation
- Something Else
- Living With Wolves
- Vision Eyes
- One Day We Will Put Out the Sun
- Behind the Clown
- Rock Spirit
- Through Day and Night
- When Angel Wings Were White
- Big (Japanese Bonus Track)
Jorn Lande – Vocals
Magnus Rosén – Bass
Jörn Viggo Lofstad – Guitars
Stian Kristoffersen – Drums
Ronny Tegner – Keyboards
Day 6 of the 10 Days of JORN brings us to the project of guitarist Nikolo Kotzev, Brazen Abbot.
Guilty as Sin features a triumvirate of singers including, Joe Lynn Turner (Rainbow), Goran Edman (Street Talk, Yngwie Malmsteen) and Jorn Lande. Brazen Abbot also features current Europe bandmates Mic Michaeli on keyboards,John Leven on bass and Ian Haughland on drums.
Guilty as Sin blasts out of the gate with an awesome Rainbow like track sung by Joe Lynn Turner.
Eyes on the Horizon is the first Brazen Abbot track Jorn Lande has ever sung on, and it is a great one. This song has a sound similar to that of Deep Purple.
I’ll Be Free almost seems out of place after the first two power tracks. This is a slow ballad sung by Goran Edman. It is a descent song, but its placement here seems odd to me.
Slip Away is another great rocker sung by Joe Lynn Turner. Jorn Lande astonishes all with his powerful voice on Mr. Earthman. Goran Edman shows that he can rock hard too on the very cool Like Jonah.
Jorn Lande sounds just like David Coverdale on Bring the Colors Home. This low tempo track would not have sounded out of place on any of the last few Whitesnake albums. This song has hit written all over it!
Goran Edman takes over the microphone on Fool’s Confession. This is another cool track, that could have easily been a hit.
Its no surprise that Joe Lynn Turner sounds great on Supernatural. This is another track in the vein of Rainbow.
Eve is another slow paced number by Goran Edman. I didn’t care for this track too much. It is too light as compared to the rest of the tracks on this disc, and seems out of place.
After that last clunker Eve, Jorn sounds like he is shot out of a cannon on A Whole Lotta Woman. This is another excellent rocker in the vein of Whitesnake!
Guilty As Sin closes out this disc with another low to mid tempo rocker by Joe Lynn Turner. This is another superb track, and a great way to close out this disc.
Joe Lynn Turner and Jorn Landesound like they are in competition on this disc. They both sing their hearts out, and sound fantastic. The Goran Edman led tracks are not in the same ballpark as the JLT and JL tracks, and are the only weak point on Guity As Sin. Guitarist Nikolo Kotzev is obviously a very talented guitarist as his amazing fretwork can be heard all throughout this disc. The Europetrio of Michaeli, Leven and Haugland do an excellent job as well. This disc is essential for Turner and Lande fans. This may appeal to fans of Rainbow, Europe and Whitesnake as well.
You can check out three of the Jorn Lande tracks below! Enjoy!
Eyes on the Horizon
A Whole Lotta Woman
Rating: Out of 10
- One Life to Live
- Eyes on the Horizon
- I’ll Be Free
- Slip Away
- Mr. Earthman
- Like Jonah
- Bring the Colors Home
- Fools Confession
- A Whole Lotta Woman
- Guilty As Sin
Day 5 of the 10 Days of Jorn, brings us the debut disc by the power metal group Masterplan.
Masterplan has a supergroup type roster for their debut effort including Jorn Lande on Vocals, Roland Grapow (Helloween) on Guitars, Uli Kusch (Gamma Ray, Helloween) on Drums, Jan-S. Eckert (Iron Saviour) on Bass and Axel Mackenrott on Keyboards.
The one thing I really enjoy about this Masterplan disc is, it sounds different from all of Jorn’s past work, while staying familiar enough to appeal to all of his fans.
Masterplan starts out with 4 blistering tracks right out of the gate. Spirit Never Dies claims hold of you very quickly with its crashing double bass drums, awesome melodies, and its impressive guitar work. Enlighten Me was released as a single off of this disc (in the UK). This bang-up song is one of my favorites on this CD.
Kind Hearted Light is another melodic powerhouse of a song. This song has a good mix of keyboards and guitars. Jorn’s vocals shine here. Crystal Night is another excellent (neckbrace optional) heavy rocker.
Soulburn is the first track to bring the tempo down from the first four lightspeed paced rockers. It took me a couple of listens before I really got into this track. I started recognizing some Black Sabbath and DIO like elements with this track after a few listens.
Heroes cranks the pace back up to 10. I could not get into this song, but its not bad. Sail On continues that pace, but I believe this is a better written song between the two.
Into the Light is the track that I was waiting for. Masterplan slows it down and Jorn’s powerful voice takes over. Great song!
This must be the horror fan in me taking over, but I really like the heavy track Crawling From Hell. How can you deny a lyric like “Monsters and Demons Crawling From Hell“?
The bass heavy Bleeding Eyes has some moments to it, but it fails to deliver. On the otherhand, When Love Comes Close is centered around the acoustic guitar, and is a one of my favorite tracks here.
Through Thick and Thin could have easily been a Whitesnake track. It seems that their wasn’t enough focus on the chorus on this track. With a little bit of reworking, this track could have been a hit.
Jorn sound a lot like Coverdale on The Kid Rocks On. This is a very good song to close out this disc with.
As a whole, this is a very solid power metal offering from Masterplan. Jorn Lande’s vocals are a highlight on every track. A little better writing, and these guys could be an unstoppable force in the heavy metal scene. This is a very good disc that should appeal to Jorn Lande, Helloween, and power metal fans.
Check out the videos below. If you like the tracks below, you will definitely want to pick this up!
Spirit Never Dies (Live)
Kind Hearted Light
When Love Comes Close
Rating: Out of 10
- Spirit Never Dies
- Enlighten Me
- Kind Hearted Light
- Crystal Night
- Sail On
- Into the Light
- Crawling from Hell
- Bleeding Eyes
- When Love Comes Close
- Through Thick and Then
- The Kid Rocks On
Day 4 of the 10 Days of JORN brings us to Jorn Lande’s 2nd disc as a solo artist, Worldchanger.
Worldchanger also features Tore Moren (Rain) on Guitars, Sid Ringsby (TNT) on Bass, and Jan Aksel “Hellhammer” (Mayhem) on Drums.
To me, Worldchanger is the finest piece of music Jorn Lande has ever recorded. This CD is one of my all time favorite discs and gets regular play to this day.
Worldchanger moves Jorn one step closer to mainstream acceptability while maintaining the heaviness and progressive feel that Jorn Lande has become known for. I don’t find it surprising at all that Jorn chose to re-release 6 of the tracks from Worldchanger on the January 2007 disc, The Gathering.
One word describes this disc, stellar!
I could give you a song by song breakdown of Worldchanger, but this is one instance where I will let the music speak for itself. I have included 3 videos from Worldchanger below. Go check them out, and then go buy this! You can thank me later!
This disc is essential for all hard rock and Jorn Lande Fans. It will appeal to most Whitesnake fans as well. This is the only disc that I have reviewed that has received a perfect score from me. Yes, it is that good!
Bless the Child
House of Cards
Rating:Out of 10
- Tungur Knivur
- Sunset Station
- Glow In the Dark
- House of Cards
- Bless the Child
- Bridges Will Burn
Some crafty fellow made a pretty solid video for one of the demo tracks off of the upcoming Chinese Democracy CD.
Take a listen to the video below and let me know what you think.
There is the Time
Day 3 of the 10 Days of Jorn, brings the 2nd disc, Burn The Sun, by the progressive metal group, Ark.
Ark’s already amazing roster grew for their sophomore effort. The bass playing virtuoso Randy Coven (Holy Mother, Steve Vai, Blues Saraceno) and longtime Yngwie Malmsteen keyboardist Mats Olausson, joined guitarist Tore Ostby, drummer John Macaluso, and lead vocalist extraordinaire Jorn Lande .
Not only did the band lineup improve, so did the production on Burn the Sun. The muddy production that hurt the over all sound on the debut disc is gone. Former Victory guitar player Tommy Newton came in to produce this disc and did a hell of a job. The sound quality on Burn the Sun is nothing short of superb.
It seems that everything about Burn the Sun improved over the debut. This disc has better production, writing, and songs. Jorn Lande’s singing has improved over the first disc as well.
Heal the Waters is an amazing song to start this disc off with. Jorn Lande sings this song in a lower register, before breaking out in his powerful raspy goodness. It doesn’t take long for newcomers Randy Coven and Mats Olausson to bust out and show the power of this enhanced Ark lineup.
Everytime I listen to Torn I hear something different. The ghost like guitars of Tore Ostby swirls between your speakers. Randy Coven’s bass sounds amazing here.
Burn The Sun is a very cool track. Jorn sings in a lower register on this track. When Coven’s heavy bass matches Jorn’s lower range, this track takes on a Black Sabbath like feel to it. Nonetheless, this track could have been huge in the U.S., had any radio stations picked up on it.
Jorn shows off his impressive range on Resurrection. This song has a bunch of cool tempo changes, and Tore really tears it up this track. Very cool!
Absolute Zero is kind of an odd track to me. The bass and drumming is fast but light, and Jorn’s vocals seem to be at a slower pace. For some reason, this doesn’t mix together well for me. When the song picks up, it sounds great, but in the slow places it is a little weak.
Tore Ostby breaks out the Spanish Guitar on Just A Little. Jorn sounds great on this song, but I couldn’t really get into it. Its just a little too jangly for my tastes.
Waking Hour shows the world why Jorn Lande has one of the most amazing voices in rock today. Musically, this track has a Rush like sound, before moving into a harder edged direction. Once the tempo shifts, Jorn brings down the house with his incredible vocal range.
The composition of Noose is amazing. The crushing bass on Noose sounds very much in the vein of Dream Theater. Jorn’s voice on Noose sways between David Coverdale and Robert Plant. Tore Ostby smokes on the guitar. Mats Olausson keyboards remind me of Yes on this track. This is a killer progressive track, but needs a couple of listens to be fully appreciated.
Feed The Fire has Jorn singing in a range and style that I don’t think he has ever covered anywhere else. He sounds a whole lot like Steve Perry from Journey, and just about hits the range of Sting on this track. This track is a radio worthy hit!
Jorn breaks out his best David Coverdale like voice on I Bleed. Tore Ostby sounds great on this track.
Missing You ventures back into the Pink Floyd like territory of Can’t Let Go from the Ark debut. This track clocks in at over 9 minutes in length. I can almost see the laser light show while listening to the howling guitars of Tore Ostby. This is a very moody song, but it has an excellent sound quality to it, and the guitars are pristine on the track.
The Japanese Bonus Track, Silent Is the Rain is a quiet track in comparision to the other 11 on Burn the Sun. Jorn sings in a low register on this track. It is an interesting listen, but it is not good enough to merit spending a bunch of extra cash to get it.
Burn the Sun is much better than the debut by Ark, but a couple of weaker songs in the middle of the disc keeps it from being perfect. This disc is essential to Jorn Lande fans. Progressive rock fans need to get this too!
Rating: Out of 10
- Heal the Waters
- Burn the Sun
- Absolute Zero
- Just A Little
- Waking Hour
- Feed the Fire
- I Bleed
- Missing You
- Silent is the Rain (Japanese Bonus Track)
Day 1 of the 10 days of Jorn starts with the self titled debut by the progressive metal band Ark. This is the disc where people really started noticing Jorn Lande. He did have prior releases with the Snakes, and Vagabond ( very hard to find discs, that get big dollars on EBay and GEMMto name a few), but this is the disc where Jorn started perfecting his craft. The end result is a classic progressive metal disc that is still a very good listening experience in 2007.
Ark also features the amazing playing of Tore Ostby (Conception) on guitars and progressive rhythm master John Macaluso(TNT and Yngwie Malmsteen) on drums.
Burning Downestablishes the tone and pace of this CD immediately. Jorn’s amazing voice takes hold of you quickly. The tempo changes and power of this track will kick you in the ass, and Tore Ostby’s flying fretwork will set your hair on fire.
Where the Winds Blowis a progressive masterpiece by any standards. This is one of the many tracks that Jorn chose to rework for his new release, the Gathering.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame is a track that is hard to describe. It has parts with Spanish guitar and jazz like piano. It is an interesting track but not my favorite by any means.
Singer’s at the World’s Dawnis a heavy prog rocker, with excellent guitars and Deep Purple like keyboards. Jorn really belts this song out. The power and raspiness of Lande’s voice on this track is amazing.
The bass drumming by John Macaluso on Mother Love will amaze you. The track is what I would consider another progressive masterpiece. There lots of timing changes, killer drumming, great keyboards, and more amazing fretwork by Tore Ostby.
Center Avenue was an odd track to me. It starts off sounding like a Dream Theater track, but the pacing of the music doesn’t seem to fit the vocals to me. It was the lone track on this disc, that for some reason did not really work well for me. The guitar parts are pretty cool, but lyrically it didn’t seem to fit together right.
Can’t Let Go on the other hand has oodles of redeeming qualities. This 9 plus minute track has a Pink Floyd like sound to it, and is an awesome track to end this disc with. The epic track needs to be heard to be appreciated.
This is a very solid debut Ark. The musicianship on these songs is superb. The production quality sounds a little muddy at times, but it does not distract from the power of the music. Jorn Lande’s powerhouse vocals are worth the price of admission. This is a disc that progressive rock and Jorn Lande fans can’t afford to miss.
Rating:Out of 10
The video below is Ark performing Burning Down at a rare U.S. appearance at the Prog Power U.S.A. festival in Atlanta, Georgia. The sound is kind of muddy on the video, but you will still be able to hear the power of Jorn Lande’s voice. This video doesn’t capture the power of the studio track, but its still worth watching.
- Burning Down
- Where the Wind Blows
- Hunchback of Notre Dame
- Singer’s At the World’s Dawn
- Mother Love
- Center Avenue
- Can’t Let Go
The Riot, Reckless Breed Remastered disc is like getting two discs in one. On this reissue, there are 6 tracks that originally appeared on the long out of print Riot Live EP.
This disc features the debut (1982) of the late, great Riot frontman Rhett Forrester. The cool thing about this remastered disc is not only do you get the studio tracks, but you get hear most of them performed live by Forrester. The live tracks really captures the energy of Riot.
As far as the studio tracks on Restless Breed, this disc was the beginning of a new sound for Riot. They were progressing towards a NWOBHM sound on this disc. Quite a few of the tracks sound in the vein of 70′s era Judas Priest musically. This is one of those killer hard rock discs from the early 80′s that often gets overlooked.
Loanshark is an explosive high tempo track that you will find the need to crank up the volume on.
Loved By You is a solid rock track. Showdown shows that Forrester can slow it down and still sound great.
There are some filler tracks on Restless Breed, but the addition of the live tracks have increased my rating over the original disc.
Rhett Forrester shows that he is one hell of a front man on this disc, and Mark Reale’s awesome playing shows that he is one very under rated guitar player.
This disc is essential for all of Rhett Forrester’s fans. Riot and Hard Rock fans in general ought to pick this up.
Rating: Out of 10
Here is the Video for Restless Breed Live!
- Hard Lovin’ Man
- Restless Breed
- When I Was Young
- Loved By You
- Over To You
- Dream Away
- Violent Crimes
- Hard Lovin’ Man Live
- Showdown Live
- Loved By You Live
- Loanshark Live
- Restless Breed Live
- Swords & Tequila Live
Back in the late 90′s when most of the Big Hair bands went into hiding, and fans of the genre were struggling trying to find new music to listen to, one band from Germany, PC69, threw caution to the wind and released a killer Hair Metal CD, Electrified.
Sadly, this went largely unnoticed in the United States, as interest in this music just wasn’t there at the time.
Pink Cream 69 as they are known as in Germany consists of David Readman on vocals, Alfred Koffler on guitars, Dennis Ward on bass and Kosta Zafiriou on Drums.
Readman has a voice that sounds like a cross between Kip Winger and David Coverdale. Judging from this disc, Alfred Koffler is an amazing yet very under rated guitarist.
Electrified has several stand out tracks including Shame, Stranger In Time, Break the Silence, Electrified, Over the Fire and Burn Your Soul.
This album rocks hard until you get all the way to Rocket Ride, which is the album’s lone power ballad.
This disc is a nice little gem in my collection. When I play this disc for my friends who into the old hair metal scene, their initial reaction is usually, “Oh My God, Who is this band?!”
You can find most of the Pink Cream 69 releases on ITunes now. I have included some videos below so you can hear how good this band is for yourself!
Rating:Out of 10
Over the Fire
Stranger in Time
- Stranger In Time
- Break the Silence
- Over the Fire
- Losing My Faith
- Higher Kind of Love
- Burn Your Soul
- Rocket Ride
- Best For You
- Gone Again
Quite possibly one of the best discs of 2005 is Lipservice, the 10th release by Swedish rockers Gotthard. Gotthard is well known in the UK and Europe, but continue to go unnoticed in the United States. It is really a shame, because a record this good should really be heard by the masses.
“Lipservice” has gone Double Platinum in Switzerland and continues to sell well everywhere but in the United States.
Gotthard has a sound that falls somewhere between Def Leppard and Bon Jovi, but”Lipservice” is a stronger release than either of those bands have put out in years.
Whether you want some rocking pop metal songs or some power ballads, “Lip Service” has it all.
“All We Are”, and “Dream On” start this disc off right by rocking. “Lift You Up”, should have been a massive hit here. “Everything I Want“, is an awesome Def Leppard like power ballad, and “Cupid’s Arrow” sounds a lot like a Whitesnake track musically.
“I’m Alive” is an excellent heavy track with a killer vocal by Steve Lee. “Stay For the Night” and “Anytime Anywhere” could have both been radio hits. Both tracks have a sound that is similar to House of Lords.
“Said and Done” is another quality rock track with excellent guitars of Leo Leoni and Freddy Scherer.
“Nothing Left At All” is an acoustic guitar, piano based ballad that could have been another big hit.
There is a lot to like on Lip Service. This is a very upbeat and clean sounding record. It has a good mix of excellent vocals, and great sounding guitars, crafting one of the best Hard Rock/Melodic metal discs I have ever heard. Fans of Def Leppard, Bon Jovi, Whitesnake and the Scorpions are going to like this disc a lot. All other should at least give this a listen too.
Here are a couple of videos from Lip Service for you to check out!
Lift You Up
- All We Are
- Dream On
- Lift You Up
- Everything I Want
- Cupid’s Arrow
- I Wonder
- I’m Alive
- I’ve Seen An Angel Cry
- Stay For the Night
- Anytime Anywhere
- Said and Done
- The Other Side of Me
- Nothing Left At All
- And Then Goodbye
Steve Lee – vocals
Leo Leoni – guitars
Mandy Meyer – guitars
Marc Lynn – bass guitar
Hena Habegger – drums
One of the many bands lost in the shuffle of the grunge movement of the early 90′s was Indianapolis natives Sweet F.A.
I had the pleasure of seeing these guys live a few times before they broke up, and they always put on a good show.
Stick To Your Guns is the debut disc by this 5 piece unit of Steven David DeLong on vocals, Jon “Lightning” Huffman and James Thunder on guitars, Jim Quick on bass and Tricki Lane on drums.
This band has a great sound, which is a cross of sleaze metal and a dash of southern rock. They seemed ripe to make it big back in the early 90s but they never seemed to get the marketing push they needed by MCA to get them over the hump. They had the look, the swagger, the sound to get them there, but MCA didn’t really know how to market Hard Rock artists very well, and their success was cut short, way too early.
There are some excellent tunes on this disc that still hold up pretty well today. Prince of the City is a great high energy track to start this disc off with. Nothin’ For Nothin’ is another sleazy rocker that reminds me of the Bullet Boys quite a bit. The beat and groove of Rhythm of Action is killer. Whiskey River is a powerful rocker in the vein of Skid Row. The acoustic power ballad Heart of Gold is easily as good as anything you heard from the more successful bands of the era (Warrant, Poison, Cinderella). This disc ends with the acoustic track Southern Comfort. This is a very cool song to end this disc with.
This is one of those CD’s that 80′s hard rock fans can break out at any time and still enjoy. Great vocals, and musicianship by the Sweet F.A. guys. This is one of those discs that is out of print and is becoming harder to find, so pick one of these up if you can get your hands on it!
Rating: Out of 10
Here is the video for Rhythm of Action:
- Prince of the City
- Nothin’ for Nothin’
- Rhythm of Action
- Do A Little Drivin’
- Daily Grind
- Stick To Your Guns
- Whiskey River
- I Love Women
- Breakin’ The Law
- Heart of Gold
- Devil’s Road
- Southern Comfort
Sweet F.A. is:
Steven David DeLong – vocals
Jon “Lightning” Huffman – guitars
James Thunder – guitars
Jim Quick – bass
Tricki Lane – drums
I passed by the Dream Evil’s United disc in my local record shop several times over the last few weeks. Each time, the cover on this disc would catch my eye, but I haven’t ever heard a single track by this band in my life, so I wasn’t will to lay the bucks to check it out. My local store has a demo copy sitting out, and let me listen to the first couple of songs. This CD went home shortly thereafter. The real bonus is, I picked up one of the first pressings of this disc, that comes with a second CD, with 5 extra songs (at the same price).
What does Dream Evil sound like? If there was a 2nd New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Dream Evil would be one of the bands leading the pack. This is very much in the same vein as Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, without sounding like either of those two bands. This isn’t power metal or progressive rock, this is heavy metal, the way it is supposed to be done!!
Lead Singer Niklas Isfeldt has the pipes to really belt out these tunes, and drive them home. At times he hits notes in the Rob Halford range, which is really cool to hear. Dream Evil has a fiery axe attack of Mark Black on lead, and Frederick Nordstrom on rhythm guitars. The heaviness of this guitar duo reminds me quite a bit of Accept, but the intensity of Peter Stalfors bass really gives this band a different sound. The commanding double bass drums of Pat Power tops off Dream Evil’s powerful yet melodic sound.
United is a very heavy disc, with no filler tracks. There are plenty of stand out tracks:
Fire! Battle! In Metal! is as good as metal anthems come. United, Evilution, Let Me Out, Higher on Fire and Back From the Dead are all impressive. When the band slows it down on Love is Blind, I was blown away. This is one killer heavy track that has to be heard to be appreciated.
Don’t take my word for it. Listen to the video and the 3 mp3′s below, and discover this awesome band for yourself. Fans of British Heavy Metal would be crazy not to pick this up! If I had heard this disc in 2006, it would have cracked my 2006 Heavy metal Top 5 list for sure.
Rating:Out of 10
Fire! Battle! In Metal!
Let Me Out
Back From the Dead
- Fire! Battle! In Metal!
- Blind Evil
- Let Me Out
- Higher On Fire
- Kingdom At War
- Love Is Blind
- Back From the Dead
- My Number One
- Calling Your Name
- Into the Unknown
- I Will Never
If you like your music full of sleaze, punk and in your face heavy rock and roll, you may want to check out North England Rockers, Kid Ego.
The first three tracks Ignite the Tide, Lady Conniver and Till I Die kick you in the head repeatedly and keep you asking for more. Ignite the Tide starts to loose speed about midway through the disc and picks back up again with the infectious Heartbreak Hooker. Deathrow, Flirtin’ with Suicide, and Long Time Runnin’ will have you break out your air guitar and leave you needing a neck brace.
Ignite the Tide is a powerful debut by Kid Ego. There are elements of their music that reminds me of early Motley Crue, L.A. Guns and a maybe a dash of Bad Religion. It is hard rock with one foot firmly implanted in punk. Kid Ego is a band that you will be hearing about for years to come.
This debut is positively worth your money. I had a hard time tracking this one down, but was able to get it from ITunes. Check it out!!
Rating: Out of 10
Here is the video for Flirtin’ With Suicide
- Ignite the Tide
- Lady Conniver
- Till I Die
- Magic Candy
- Sweet Bectoria
- Heartbreak Hooker
- Flirtin’ with suicide
- Long Time Running
While strolling through my local music store, I found this lost gem that I once had in my collection several years ago. Before, I picked this up again, it had been well over 10 years since I have last heard Loudness, so I didn’t remember their music at all.
Thunder in the East was originally released in 1985 and reissued in 2003. This was the first album released in the U.S. in the english language. After a little digging, I found that this disc peaked at #74 on the Billboard charts. Quite an accomplishment for a virtually unknown Japanese metal band.
How does this music stand up today? Pretty well. This is still a pretty good metal disc. I can hear Stryper and Iron Maiden like elements. (It sounds nuts, but it works for this band.)
The opening track Crazy Nights is a catchy heavy rocker with an excellent guitar riff to open the song.
There are a bunch of other quality tracks on this disc including Like Hell, Heavy Chains, Get Away, and The Lines are Down.
Lead singer, Minoru Niihara does an pretty good job vocally on this disc. Lead Guitarist, Akira Takasaki reminds me of Oz Fox quite a bit, but plays much heavier than that.
I enjoyed this disc quite a bit. This band may look like a 80′s big hair band but they were actually quite heavy for their time. Metal fans who haven’t heard this should certainly give this a look. There are some above average metal tracks that are worth discovering!
Enjoy the videos I found from Thunder in the East! If these don’t take you back 20 years, nothing will.
Rating: Out of 10
- Crazy Nights
- Like Hell
- Heavy Chains
- Get Away
- We Could Be Together
- Run For Your Life
- Clockwork Toy
- No Way Out
- The Lines are Down
- Never Change Your Mind