I knew when I saw the announcement for the lineup at M3 in 2014, it was going to be an awesome show. As Friday night, and the first half of Saturday had already proved at M3, this was the Festival show to be at this year.
One of the acts that I was most anxious to see at M3 was Red Dragon Cartel. This return of Jake E. Lee to the big stage is something that I could not miss, and judging from the capacity crowd at the second stage, Jake E. Lee’s fans were in full force. Red Dragon Cartel did a great selection of tunes including music from Ozzy Osbourne, Badlands and of course Red Dragon Cartel. Darren Lewis did a fine job on vocals, and Jake E. Lee was freakin’ amazing, just as I had expected. As great as Red Dragon Cartel was, the evening was only going to get better from there.
Next up on the main stage was Queensryche. This was Queensryche with Todd La Torre on vocals in case you were wondering which version. I have not seen Todd LaTorre with Queensryche before, but I recall Queensryche’s last appearance at M3. It was obvious there was tension in the band at the time, and it ended up being one of the band’s last shows with their former singer Geoff Tate. With that being said, this was a different Queensryche than the one I saw previously, and I gotta say, I was impressed as hell. Queensryche was on fire at M3. They came out with all guns blazing, and Mr. LaTorre was absolutely incredible. As soon as I heard the opening riffs of “Nightrider” I was hooked. I haven’t heard Queensryche do this song in years. I was also super excited to hear “Queen of the Reich”. Man…oh Man, Queensryche practically stole the show, and I am pretty sure Todd LaTorre made about 10,000 new believers at the M3 Rock Festival. They were fantastic! A couple of days after M3, it was announced that Geoff Tate will and Queensryche have come to an agreement, and that Tate will no longer use the Queensryche name. This is good news, and I look forward to supporting both Queensryche and Geoff Tate in the future.
Our day was super packed, and I am sad to say that I missed Autograph. This was due to a conflicting schedule for an interview that we had lined up with Brad Gillis and Kelly Keagy from Night Ranger. (coming to HRH soon).
Next band up was Sebastian Bach and his solo band. As much as I love Sebastian, his performance at M3 this year was not my favorite. He kept going on and on about how his new album was # 1 on iTunes, and while I think that is great, and a hell of a hard accomplishment for any hard rock / musician from the 80’s, it came across kind of douchey. Sebastian seemed upset that folks still want to hear Skid Row songs, and while he did them and sound great, it kind of set the mood for his show. He was good, but he could have been so much better. He was amazing at the 2012 M3.
L.A. Guns was up next on the second stage. Aside from Kix, L.A. Guns has probably played more M3 Rock Festival’s than any other band, and always enjoy their shows. This year the band has a new guitarist, former Endeverafter frontman and guitarist Michael Grant. I have been fortunate enough to see Michael play with his former band, and I already knew that he is one bad ass dude. Grant does a great job as the band’s latest Axe slinger, and of course Phil Lewis and company were great. I can’t understand why they were on the second stage, but I digress.
I am embarrassed to say that the first time I saw Night Ranger live was at the 2012 M3 Rock Festival. Since then, I have made up for lost time and have seen them play live several times. The reason why I have gone, and will continue to go to Night Ranger concerts is that the band puts on an incredible live show. Brad Gillis and Joel Hoekstra really tear it up on stage, and are a blast to watch play. Jack Blades and Kelly Keagy still deliver some of the best rock vocals on the planet. Night Ranger’s set was far too short, but their condensed set was damn impressive, and I thought they were easily the best band of the day. The joy of music always comes out on the faces of Night Ranger. They always seem to enjoy playing as much as I do hearing and seeing them. Night Ranger also debuted their new song “High Road”, and I gotta say the new song is pretty good. I look forward to hearing the rest of the new album soon.
I didn’t make it over the hill again for Slaughter as the sky had opened up and turned what was an awesome weather day, into a rather soggy evening. I chose to protect my gear from the rain, and hung near the main stage for Tesla.
Tesla has been one of my favorite bands for a long time, and it has been a couple of years since I have seen them play (ironically Night Ranger opened up for them then too!) Night Ranger is always a tough act to follow in my opinion, but Tesla lived up to the challenge. Not only did Tesla debut a new song “MP3” off of their soon to be released album Simplicity, they also played killer set of tunes that covered the majority of their discography. I was a little disappointed that I didn’t hear “Song and Emotion” (one of my personal favorites) or Cumin’ Atcha Live, but it was still a great show. The Merriweather Post Pavilion was jam packed to one of the biggest crowds that I have ever seen for M3, and Tesla kept them all standing. This was a true testament to one great band.
Of all of the M3 Rock Festival’s I have been to, this one was by far my favorite. It was a great time with my good friend Ryo Vie, packed with awesome music and memories that I will never forget. I am already counting the days until M3 Rock Festival # 7 in 2015. I don’t know how they will top this lineup next year, but I have a feeling the next M3 Rock Festival is going to be even better!
Jake E. Lee’s triumphant return to the hard rock world has been a blessing to many hard rock fans’ ears. Jake E. Lee’s new band Red Dragon Cartel, has been playing a bunch of club shows across the U.S. and recently performed on the Monsters of Rock cruise. Next Saturday night, Red Dragon Cartel will be taking the stage at the M3 Rock Festival.
This hard rock fan couldn’t be more excited to hear Jake E. Lee perform, and his appearance at M3 may be my most anticipated moment of this awesome two day festival in Columbia, MD.
Check out the clips “Deceived” and “Shout It Out” below.
Tickets for the M3 Rock Festival are STILL available. Get your tickets at this link!
When Eddie Trunk brought Jake E. Lee on That Metal Show in 2013, I couldn’t have been more excited. Mr. Lee has been noticeably absent from the hard rock world for a few years, and I greatly missed him. When Jake mentioned his new band Red Dragon Cartel, I was ecstatic that Jake was returning to make new music. I have longed to hear him play in a band since the last Badlands CD Dusk from ’98.
Well Red Dragon Cartel is finally here, and I couldn’t be happier. The new music is great, and has me super excited to see the band live later in 2014.
The opening track “Deceiver” is an awesome stadium anthem that easily states that JAKE E. LEE IS BACK! The riffs on this song sound like they could have easily been off of the Ozzy Osbourne Ultimate Sin album. I can’t get enough of this song.
The song “Shout It Out” has more of a modern flair to it, but it a good song, and one of my favorites on the album.
“Feeder” features Cheap Trick’s Robin Zander on vocals, and as always Zander does a terrific job. This guy could sing names out of the phone book and make it sound good. Jake E. Lee’s riffs are pretty awesome too. Something about the intro on this song reminds me of the opening music on the animated series Batman Beyond, but it is very cool.
“Fall From The Sky (Seagull)” is a slower tune that has a cool alternative vibe too it. I really dig this track. It sounds great loud too!
If there is one weak track on the Red Dragon Cartel album, It is “Wasted”. While I like Paul Di’Anno, I don’t think his voice has aged well, and this song to me would have been better with Darren Smith on vocals. I like the music, but the vocals kill it for me.
“Slave” is another cool rocker with some killer riffs from Jake E. Lee. This hard driving tune really gets your blood pumping.
I am sure some folks were shocked when they heard “Big Mouth” with Maria Brink on vocals. This is unlike anything Jake E. Lee has ever done. It is a modern hard rocker, which isn’t too far off from what In This Moment plays. I like In This Moment and Maria Brink so I have really been enjoying this tune. I am hoping In This Moment will play this live at some point.
The song “War Machine” is doom-laden Black Sabbath like metal opus that gets better every time I listen to it. What a cool tune!
I was surprised to find that Jake E. Lee locked in Sass Jordan to sing a song on the album. I love Sass Jordan, especially on her recent release S.U.N. – Something Unto Nothing. She is a powerful bluesy singer. She does a killer job on “Redeem Me”.
“Exquisite Tenderness” is the first song that Jake E. Lee ever wrote. This is a piano based instrumental that shows that Mr. Lee has a great musical talent beyond his guitar (but please don’t give up that six string Jake!).
If you buy the special Best Buy Edition of the Red Dragon Cartel CD, you will get a bonus track “American Dream”. Is it worth it? I think so. This is a cool rocker that should not be missed.
Overall, I have been enjoying Red Dragon Cartel. It has easily been my favorite hard rock CD of 2014 so far. Some of my peers have not been so kind to Red Dragon Cartel singer Darren Smith, but I will go on record that I like his voice a lot. He reminds of a cross between John Corabi and Rod Jackson. I like both of those singers and I like Darren too. I can’t wait to hear him sing these songs live.
Red Dragon Cartel’s debut is a solid album all the way through, and most importantly it brings Jake E. Lee back to the limelight, and live stages all across the world. Welcome back Jake! I am glad you and Red Dragon Cartel are here!
02. Shout It Out
03. Feeder (Robin Zander)
04. Fall From The Sky (Seagull)
05. Wasted (Paul Di’Anno)
07. Big Mouth (Maria Brink)
08. War Machine
09. Redeem Me
10. Exquisite Tenderness
11. American Dream (Bonus Track)
Red Dragon Cartel is:
Jake E. Lee – Guitars
Ronnie Mancuso – Bass
D.J Smith – Vocals
Jonas Fairley – Drums
Former Ozzy Osbourne and Badlands guitarist, Jake E. Lee is pleased to announce June 2014 UK tour dates for his new band Red Dragon Cartel. The UK tour follows Red Dragon Cartel’s critically acclaimed, eponymous debut album, released by Frontiers Records on January 27th.
The UK tour includes London’s O2 Academy Islington (June 6), Nottingham Rescue Rooms (June 7), Wolverhampton Slade Rooms (June 8), Glasgow Classic Grand (June 10) and Newcastle O2 Academy 2 (June 11). Special guests on all UK dates include Syron Vanes and Jupiter Falls.
As previously announced, Red Dragon Cartel will also play Download Festival on Sunday June 15th.
A special 24 hour ticket pre-sale for the Red Dragon Cartel UK tour dates will kick off on Planet Rock from 9am on Thursday January 30th. Tickets will then go on sale to the general public on Friday January 31st via www.seetickets.com or directly from the venues.
The band’s new single “Deceived” will be released in the UK on Monday February 10th.
Get a FREE DOWNLOAD of the track “Feeder” from Jake E. Lee’s Red Dragon Cartel!! Just head to the Noise Trade website to grab a copy: http://www.noisetrade.com/reddragoncartel/feeder “Feeder” features Cheap Trick’s Robin Zander on vocals.
New Album by Band Comprised of Former Ozzy Osbourne/Badlands Guitar Legend Jake E. Lee, Bassist Ronnie Mancuso, Vocalist D.J. Smith and Drummer Jonas Fairley Set for Release in January
The newest band ready to take aim at the creative void in the hard rock world, Red Dragon Cartel, are set to release their debut album via Frontiers Records. The self-titled debut by the band made up of guitar legend Jake E. Lee, bassist Ronnie Mancuso, singer D.J. Smith and drummer Jonas Fairley is set for release on January 24th in Europe and January 28th in North America.
Jake E. Lee is best known for his work in Badlands and as guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne on Bark at the Moon and The Ultimate Sin albums. Red Dragon Cartel also features various guest appearances from some of music’s most notable faces including legendary Cheap Trick vocalist Robin Zander, original Iron Maiden vocalist Paul Di’Anno, Kill Devil Hill/Pantera bassist Rex Brown, Slash’s Conspirators Todd Kearns and Brent Fitz and In This Moment front woman Maria Brink. The album was produced by Ronnie Mancuso and Jake E. Lee and was executive produced, mixed and mastered by Kevin Churko (In This Moment, Ozzy Osbourne, Five Finger Death Punch).
From the opening riff of “Deceived” to final sustained piano chord of “Exquisite Tenderness,” it is clear Red Dragon Cartel has created an album that stands amongst some of the greatest hard rock albums of all time. Infectious songs such as “Shout It Out,” “Wasted” and “Slave” showcase the band’s ability to write memorable hooks and vocal melodies. Robin Zander of Cheap Trick lends his voice to the track “Feeder” and a lyric video for the song can be seen below.
Maria Brink of In This Moment lends her unique vocals to the track “Big Mouth.” Paul Di’Anno and Sass Jordan also lend their talents to the band’s debut. Jake E. Lee’s trademark playing style instantly shines through and picks up right where he left off. The album is available for pre-order on Amazon.com at http://amzn.to/1aYjMng or digitally on iTunes at http://smarturl.it/reddragoncartel that comes with an instant download of “Deceived.”
The track listing for Red Dragon Cartel is:
2. Shout It Out
3. Feeder with Robin Zander
4. Fall From The Sky (Seagull)
5. Wasted with Paul Di’Anno
7. Big Mouth with Maria Brink
8. War Machine
9. Redeem Me with Sass Jordan
10. Exquisite Tenderness
The band will be bringing these new powerhouse songs on the road playing a handful of dates in the US before embarking on a full tour in 2014. Tickets are currently on-sale and all information can be found on the band’s website.
December 12th – Los Angeles, CA – Whisky A Go Go
December 14th – Tempe, AZ – Marquee Theater (Support of Queensryche)
December 15th – San Diego, CA – Brick By Brick
December 20th – Las Vegas, NV – Count’s Vamp’d
Red Dragon Cartel – Official Website: http://reddragoncartel.com
Official Facebook: www.facebook.com/reddragoncartel
Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/reddragoncartel
If you are a fan of 80’s hard rock, you gotta check out this killer new video “We Come Undone” from Beggars and Thieves. This video features some cool cameos from Ron Keel, Jake E. Lee, Blas Elias and more! Enjoy!!
Beggars & Thieves new CD, We Are the Brokenhearted is available now! Get it here!
Ever since I first heard Enuff Z’nuff was giving away copies of their latest album Dissonance at Rocklahoma in 2008, I have been trying to get my hands on a copy. While I never tracked down one of the original versions, I was glad to find that the 2010 version released by Rock Candy Records in the UK has a few songs that were not on the original CD.
I have been a fan of Enuff Z’nuff for a long time, and when I found out that former Ozzy Osbourne & Badlands guitarist Jake E. Lee was handing the guitar duties on Dissonance, I knew I had to find a copy.
The title track “Dissonance” starts off the album in fine fashion. This is a heavier Enuff Z’nuff tune that has a 70’s hard rock vibe in the vein of KISS & Alice Cooper. It is a cool tune to start the album with.
I thought “Fine Line” was just an ok tune, but there moments when Jake E. Lee flashes his skills on guitar that makes me change my mind. I wish he would break loose more often on Dissonance.
It disappoints me to know that very few radio stations will play a cool song like “Rollaway”. This song has a cool, almost Beatle-esque vibe to it. “High” is one of the heavier numbers on Dissonance. The chorus on “High” reminds me a lot of the Beatles “Day Tripper”. It is much different lyrically, but has a similar style.
Enuff Z’nuff is from Blue Island, Il, just south of the Windy City. Their tune “Chicago” is a pretty cool ode to the city they love.
One of my absolute favorites on Dissonance is the song “Code Red”, which is only available on the Rock Candy records version of the CD. This song sounds like a blend of Enuff Z’nuff and Motley Crue. It super catchy, and if they did a radio edit, this song could easily be a hit single for E’nuff Z’nuff.
The cover of Prince’s “When Doves Cry” is kind of cool, but does not surpass the original version of tune. The Enuff Z’nuff version is heavier, and Jake E. Lee shreds on this song towards the end. Very Cool!
If I have any complaints about Dissonance, it is the editing job that the folks at Rock Candy did. The song titles were completely jumbled up from what was listed on the back of the CD. Aside from that, I have found Dissonance is a very enjoyable CD from Enuff Z’nuff.
It never ceases to amaze me how great the song writing duo of Donnie Vie and Chip Z’nuff is. The songs on Dissonance are well written, and get in your head. The music on this CD is great. Jake E. Lee shows some flashes of brilliance, but mostly plays within the context of the songs. In my opinion, Dissonance is a must own disc for all Enuff Z’nuff fans and is a CD that should be checked out by everyone else.
Oddly enough this CD was released in Japan, and the UK, and still has not had an official U.S. Release. Hopefully, a smart U.S. label will pick this up, and distribute it. Until then, you can purchase the digital downloads of Dissonance at Amazon and iTunes, and the CD’s through the Rock Candy Records store on Ebay.
You can hear the songs “Lazy Dazy” and “Dissonance” on myspace. Check ’em out!
Rating: Out of 10
2. Fine Line
3. Lazy Dazy
6. Altered States
9. Joni Lynn
11. Code Red
12. When Doves Cry
13. Run For Your Life
Enuff Z’nuff is:
Donnie Vie – Vocals, Guitar, Piano
Chip Z’nuff – Vocals, Bass, Guitar, B3
Jake E. Lee – Lead Guitar
Vinnie Castaldo – Drums
The original and one of a kind, analog audio master tapes from the Jake E. Lee Solo Record entitled “A Fine Pink Mist” are up for auction on Ebay with a starting price of $15,000 dollars.
There are a total of four (4) 2 inch 24 track Ampex 499 master tapes and also 2 Stereo DAT tapes, which contain rough mixes of the content on the audio masters. Also included, are all the track sheets that describe each audio track on the 24 track masters as well as tempos, etc.
This record was recorded at Juan Croucier’s The Cellar recording studio in 1995, over a six-month period. It was engineered by Juan Croucier and produced by Jake E. Lee. There is a considerable amount of money, hard work and time invested in these masters. They are original and in excellent condition. This recording session was never totally finished and the studio was never paid for the studio time incurred. Therefore, we are offering these masters to anyone who would like to invest in a very rare piece of rock music history.
Jake E. Lee, when on to quickly rerecord this record with another producer and studio. The other version of this record was released sometime in 1996 on Pony Canyon. This is the original version of his “vision” for the record. These tracks were methodically and painstakingly put together before he went over budget. He used over one hundred individual guitar effects peddles on this record – some of which, he built himself.
Jake E. Lee, programmed the drums, played bass, rhythm guitars, lead guitars and more.
There is also a bonus track; a cover version of a Jeff Beck song called Rice Pudding that was recorded for a tribute record to Jeff Beck called Jeffology and features Ray Luzier on drums and Jake performing all the other instruments. This track was engineered and mixed by Juan Croucier.
Check out the auction on Ebay here.
Dusk is the third and final album by Badlands. This disc was recorded in 1992 before the death of singer Ray Gillen. According to drummer Jeff Martin, the songs on “Dusk” were demos for the third Badlands album. Atlantic Records didn’t like the direction of the songs and later dropped Badlands. The incredible thing about this album is that the songs were recorded in one take. They haven’t been touched up for this disc. For this album to be captured in this fashion, it sounds really good.
I don’t think the songs on “Dusk” are quite as strong as first couple of Badlands records. The music has more of a raw feel to it than some of their earlier stuff. I also think the songs might be a tad bit heavier on this disc.
When Ray Gillen uses the upper range of his voice, it sends shivers down my spine. Gillen was an amazing singer who never got the recognition he deserved. His vocals on this disc are spot on all the way through “Dusk”.
I have always enjoyed the guitar work of Jake E. Lee. His playing is exactly what you would expect. It is awesome as always. Because of the raw feel of the music, some songs feel like a Jake E. Lee jam session. Some people will love it, others will want a little more structure to their songs. I think it sounds pretty cool.
It isn’t very often when you actually hear a bass player play his instrument instead of just trying to keep the rhythm with the drummer. You can hear Greg Chaisson cutting loose on the bass all over “Dusk”.
Some of the highlights are the rocking tune “Healer” and “Sun Red Sun”, the Hendrix like “Fat Cat”, the bluesy “Lord Knows”. “Ride the Jack” sounds like it could have been a very good left over track from the debut disc.
As a whole, I am a fan of Badlands. They always seemed to create some cool bluesy metal that seemed to be well beyond its time. “Dusk” carries on where the first two albums left off. If you are a fan of Badlands, you should certainly pick this up.
You can find “Dusk” at NEH Records at this link.
Ray Gillen – Vocals
Jake E. Lee – Guitar
Greg Chaisson – Bass
Jeff Martin – Drums
Yesterday (Monday, December 1st) was the 15th Anniversary of the death of singer Ray Gillen. I remember Ray best for the time he spent with Jake E. Lee in the band Badlands. I am still very fond of the three albums released by Badlands and I still listen to all of them today.
Rest in Peace Ray! You are missed!
The following videos are from Ray’s time as singer in Badlands.
Dreams In The Dark
ENUFF Z’NUFF have updated their MySpace page to stream the new track ‘High’, featuring former OZZY OSBOURNE/BADLANDS guitarist Jake E. Lee.
Check out ‘High’ at this location. The track will be included on the band’s forthcoming new album, Dissonance, due out later this year.
According to Chip Z’nuff, The new album is done, shooting for a release this fall. We hope to have a special edition for sale at Rocklahoma. We decided to call this one “Album of the Year” and some of the songs titles include ” Dissonance ,” ” Lazy Dazy.” “Altered States,” “High,” “Fine Line,” and “Chicago”. It features Donnie Vie, Chip Z’nuff, Jake E Lee and Vinnie Castaldo. More details to follow.
After coming off of the Ozzy Osbourne, Ultimate Sin tour, Jake E. Lee, formed Badlands with singer Ray Gillen.
If you were a fan of Jake E. Lee’s awesome metal guitar licks on Ozzy disc, The Ultimate Sin, then you may have found his work on Badlands a surprise, as on this disc, he moved in a more bluesy, hard rock direction.
As much as I enjoyed Lee’s work with Ozzy, it wasn’t until his work with Badlands where he truly shined. Jake E. Lee’s awesome guitar licks, combined with Ray Gillen’s incredible voice is one potent combination, and it shows on the brilliant debut record from Badlands.
This record didn’t chart as high as some of other hair metal acts at the time, but Badlands sound nothing like the majority of the acts from the 80’s. If anything their music was ahead of its time. It is excellent, bluesy hard rock that still sounds incredible to this day. I still consider this one of my top ten records of all time.
Sadly, this record is out of print, and prices for it are starting to soar on the internet. Hopefully, this record will get reissued, as music this good needs to be heard by rock fans who would like to check it out. Grab this if you can find it! Happy Hunting!
Rating: Out 0f 10
1. High Wire
2. Dreams In The Dark
3. Jade’s Song
4. Winter’s Call
5. Dancing On The Edge
6. Streets Cry Freedom
7. Hard Driver
8. Rumblin’ Train
9. Devil’s Stomp
11. Ball & Chain
Ray Gillen – Vocals
Jake E. Lee – Guitars
Eric Singer – Drums
Greg Chaisson – Bass
Former OZZY OSBOURNE/BADLANDS guitarist Jake E. Lee has launched a new heavy rock project with Vinnie Castaldo (drums), Fate-Al (PALEFACE) on vocals and Karma Cheema (AMERICAN HEAD CHARGE, OTEP) on guitar. The group recently entered The Tone Factory studios in Las Vegas to record its first material. More information will be made available soon.
According to antiMUSIC, former OZZY OSBOURNE/BADLANDS guitarist Jake E. Lee and original GUNS N’ ROSES drummer Steven Adler will make guest appearances on ENUFF Z’NUFF‘s upcoming 12th studio album, due later in the year.
Entitled “Lost in Vegas”, the disc was recorded primarily in “Sin City,” with some additional tracking having taken place in Chicago.