Escape Music to Release “Sea of Black” from MASS on April 23rd, 2010.
Formed in 1980, this dedicated hard rock band from the Boston area has had numerous accomplishments. Most notably, they have sold over 100,000 albums worldwide and performed with great acts such as Hanoi Rocks, Molly Hatchet, Winger, Stryper, Cheap Trick, Girlschool, Frank Marino and Mahogany Rush, Hurricane, Grim Reaper, Steven Stills and The Ramones along with many many others.
Their first self titled EP with producer Jon Mathias was recorded at The Record Plant in New York City. The EP sold over 10,000 copies in the Boston area alone, and was enough to get record companies’ attention.
In 1985, the band was signed to RCA records and released their first major label debut, “New Birth”, produced by Tony Platt. The 45 single, “Do You Love Me”, was number one for over six weeks at many radio stations along the east coast. The video for that single was also in rotation on MTV and hit Billboard’s charts. In 1987, “Mass” was signed to Enigma records and released their third album/CD, “Take You Home”, produced by John Rollo and “Mass”. This record/CD sold tens of thousands in the United States as well as England, Japan, and other countries around the world. In 1988, “Mass” released their fourth record/CD,” “Voices in the Night”, on Enigma records. Michael Sweet of the band “Stryper” was the producer. Again, this CD sold well all over the world. Songs such as “Reach for the Sky”, “Turn it all Around”, and “Voices in the Night” were available as CD singles. Songs from this CD also appeared on various compilation CD’s. That same year, “Mass” was nominated for ‘Best Heavy Metal Act’ at the Boston Music Awards.
Mass has continually worked to improve themselves and in 2007 signed with Escape Music and the result was the highly enjoyable “Crack Of Dawn” (ESM153). This release excited old fans of the band as well as attracting many new ones. Swedish producer Martin Kronlund twiddled the knobs to make this a fine sounding CD.
It’s now 2010 and the band have been working harder than ever for the new release Sea Of Black, an album that is chock full of ripping guitars and driving rhythms. Mass have always been a tight sounding four piece that have excelled in great songwriting and blinding musicianship. Once again using Martin Kronlund at the production helm what we have here is a winning formula that can only enhance their popularity. Although essentially a hard rock band Mass know how to hit the right notes with a ballad or two and they pour on the passion with ease. Astounding music…
With thirty years experience in this competitive world of rock music Mass has come shining through.
1-Falling from grace
2-All the years gone
3-The right side
5- Thru the rain
6-All that I needed
7-More than a friend
9-Ashes to Ashes
10-Till we meet again
11-Captain Jack (Instrumental)
13-Sea of black.
Mass is: Louis D’Augusta- Lead Vocals, Gene D’Itria-Guitars & Back up Vocals, Michael Palumbo – Bass & Back up Vocals, Joey “Vee” Vadala- Drums
Rocklahoma 2009 is now two days gone, but the videos keep trickling in. Check out these new clips from Youtube.
Twisted Sister – You Can’t Stop Rock and Roll
Helix – No Rest For the Wicked
Mass – Reach For the Sky (Filmed by Yasmine Baluch for Dunbar Productions)
Danger Danger – Bang Bang (From behind the stage)
In 2007, the band Mass released their first CD with new material since 1988.
I do not know how a band that has been around since the early 80’s has managed to stay off of my radar for so long. One thing is for sure, I am glad I have found them. Their new disc, Crack of Dawn is a quality piece of melodic rock.
Singer Louis D’Augusta reminds of a cross between Tony Harnell and Johnny Gioelli. He is a very good singer, and his clean vocals are a pleasure to my ears. This album tends to go back and fourth between AOR and hard rock. I prefer the harder edged tunes on this disc. My favorites are It’s You, Sweet Lady Jane, and the bonus track Seven Days.
While I am not familiar with any of Mass’ previously released music, I have enjoyed Crack of Dawn enough to look for other releases in their catalog of music.
You can check out a few tunes off of Crack of Dawn at the band’s myspace page.
Don’t miss them when they take the stage at Rocklahoma on July 12th, 2008!
Rating: Out of 10
1. It’s You
2. Crack of Dawn
4. Empty Soul
6. Magic Train
7. Monkey Brain
8. Sweet Lady Jane
9. Seven Days [*]
11. Leaving You
12. Who Am I
Louis D’Augusta – Lead and Backup Vocals
Gene D’Itria – All Guitars and Backup Vocals
Lou Spagnola – Bass Guitar and Backup Vocals
Joey ‘Vee’ Vadala – Drums
Is Rocklahoma 2008 a big music nostalgia fest? Absolutely! Would I want to attend? Yes, without question.
Many of the bands in this 4 day music extravaganza haven’t released any new tunes in years. Would I still want to see them perform? No question about it.
House of Lords
Bret Michaels (headliner)
Looking at the list of acts above, this lineup may not excite a lot of people, but I would still like to see it. I love Tracii Guns, but I make no bones about it, that I prefer the Phil Lewis version of this band. I wouldn’t go out of my way to see their set.
Chip Z’Nuff mentioned in the Rocklahoma that a new Enuff Z’nuff album is on the way with Jake E. Lee on guitar. I am not sure if Jake E. Lee will be with them at Rocklahoma, but if so, this is a show not to be missed.
I haven’t ever seen Vain live, but I have heard a lot of good things about them. I would be happy to check them out.
House of Lords is still putting out new music, and has a new CD that will hit stores in a couple of weeks. Their last album, World Upside Down was quite good. James Christian is a very good singer, and the band features the talent of axe slinger Jimi Bell. Count me in!
I had the pleasure of seeing Jetboy live in Columbus (See this article for the concert review with videos). The band was excellent alive. I wouldn’t miss this their set for anything.
Tracii Guns mentioned in the Rocklahoma press conference that he hated opening for these guys, as they used to blow him off the stage. Jetboy was originally signed to MCA, and as with most acts on that label, never got the proper support they deserved. They are going to open up a lot of eyes at Rocklahoma.
Bret Michaels mentioned at the press conference that this will be a big show with pyro etc when he closes out on Thursday night. It sounds as if he wants to make this every bit of fun as a Poison show. He also mentioned that a special area will be set up where you can meet him in person, get an autograph, and a picture, and talk music with him. With Rock of Love being the #1 show on cable televison, there will be a lot of people waiting in line to meet Bret, without question. I don’t know much of his solo music, so I can’t say if his solo set is something I would want to check out. I will likely check out his solo disc that is supposed to hit in June.
Strangely enough, most of the bands on the Friday schedule, I have not seen live. For them to all be on the same bill together is quite cool. I wouldn’t want to miss one band on the Friday night line up.
XYZ was quite similar to Dokken. Terry Ilous said that this will be the first time the band has played together is several years. It should be an interesting set, and it will good to hear some of their tunes again.
Armored Saint is easily the heaviest band on the main stage for the entire 4 day event, and is a no miss act, in my opinion. Their CD, Symbol of Salvation, is still one of my favorites.
Kingdom Come always took a lot of crap for being a Led Zeppelin clone when they first came out. Nonetheless I like their first two CD’s, but I haven’t cared for their more recent material. I am not sure what the lineup will be for this show. I am guessing it will be Lenny Wolf and a bunch of hired hands. I will have to see what I can find out on this one. I have low expectations for this part of the show.
There are plenty of Night Ranger songs that I have enjoyed over the years. They put out a new CD in 2007, which I still haven’t checked out yet. Jack Blades, Brad Gillis and Kelly Keagy are a very talented group. I wouldn’t dare miss this set.
Triumph and Extreme are co-headlining Friday night. This is one of the few appearances that Triumph is making
in 2008. Rik Emmett always puts on a good show. I wouldn’t miss this for anything.
Extreme is back together again with Gary Cherone, Nuno Bettencourt, and Pat Badger. They are working on new
material for a 2008 release. I would be happy to see Nuno play live, in any capacity. I am glad to see him return to the band that made him famous.
There is also one band that has not been announced for Friday. I am not sure who this will be, but the lineup is already a solid one.
The Saturday Lineup has a lot of question marks for me, but could turn out to be a solid day of rock.
Pretty Boy Floyd
Every Mothers Nightmare
Black N Blue
Warrant featuring Jani Lane
My understanding is that Pretty Boy Floyd has completely reunited. This isn’t the watered down version of the band that Steve Summers has been on the road with. If so, then this would be kind of cool to see.
Every Mother’s Nightmare is a complete wild card. The singer, Rick Ruhl, and drummer Jim Phipps are the only remaining members. I like their bluesy Memphis rock, and would like to check them out.
Tora Tora on the other hand is a complete band reunion. I love their two CD’s Surprise Attack, and Wild America.
I have seen them live but it has easily been 18 years ago. They were great then, so I would imagine a solid show by this group. Hopefully their unreleased CD will see the light of day after this.
I never had the opportunity to see Black N’ Blue live, but I have all of their CD’s and would certainly want to check them out. Jamie St. James was pretty good on the last Warrant CD. I don’t know what the lineup will be for this show, but I doubt that Tommy Thayer will be part of it. Gene Simmons owns him now.
I have to admit that I have never been a Trixter fan. I always looked at this band as the New Kids on the Block
with guitars. I thought their music was a little thin back in the day, and seeing them live won’t change my opinion.
I have always liked Kix, and I have seen them live a few times. I have also seen Steve Whiteman’s other band,
Funny Money (which sounds exactly like Kix). It would be cool to hear some Kix tunes live again.
I saw Jani Lane solo in 2007, and he sounded great. I am happy that Warrant is back together again in a full reunion. I have seen them live a few times, and they always put on a good show.
Cinderella is also a band that has always put on an excellent show, each and every time I have seen them. Tom Keifer’s voice is the only thing that is a question mark about this show. The band has been off for a couple of years so I am hopeful that Tom’s voice is back to full strength.
The Sunday lineup is interesting, especially with two times slots still opened. One of these slots is heavily rumored to be Motley Crue. I am not sure of the other one, but wouldn’t be shocked to see Danger Danger get the other slot.
I doubt a lot of people are going to know Axe. I know the band, but I wouldn’t go out of my to see them play live. I like their tune Rock and Roll Party In the Streets, but that is about it.
Beautiful Creatures have released a couple of CD’s in this decade which is more than a lot of the bands in this music festival can say. Seeing them on the roster has me getting out my CD’s by them again. I would certainly want to check them out.
Zebra is a darkhorse in this lineup. I haven’t seen them live, but I am quite familiar with their music. This could be a good show.
Lynch Mob now features Oni Logan on vocals, Marco Mendoza on bass, Tommy Aldridge on drums, and of course George Lynch on guitar. I saw half of this band perform with Whitesnake, and would love to see this lineup in action. Tommy Aldridge is an animal on the drums, and George Lynch needs no introductions. I am interested in hearing his new Scorpion Tales album, but this is a Scorpions cover album. This is quite odd, considering that he hasn’t ever been in the band.
Tesla is the must see band on the Sunday bill. I have seen Tesla twice in the last year, and they were excellent both times. They will easily be the best band on the Sunday lineup (amongst those that have been announced so far.)
The side stages at Rocklahoma has a bunch of darkhorses, and bands that may surprise you.
The lineups look like this:
The Retrospect Records stage includes the following bands: Jester, Sidekixx, air-A-Dice, Front Runner, Tommy Had a Vision, Valor, Gypsy Blue, Whitefoxx, Blue Tiger, Wild August, Messang, Paul Shortino, Mariah, Warryor, Bad Candy,
Lorraine, Nasty Nasty, Real Steel, Cuttlass, Vyper, Mass, Bad Candy, Oney, Strikeforce, Herazz, Reckless, Heartless, Ron Keel, Warryor and Alibi.
I am not familar with most of the bands on the Retrospect stage, aside from: Mariah, Mass, Paul Shortino, Ron Keel, Nasty Nasty and Strikeforce. I would certainly like to
check out some of these acts, although none of these were bands were ever considered A-Listers.
The other stage has Texas Hippie Coalition, Karnevil featuring Dario Lorina, Dirty Penny, Crooked X, Gypsy Pistoleros, Sweet FA, Banshee, Gods of Kansas, Lipstick Magazine, Pownd, Shadowside, Mindflow, Warmachine, Asphalt Valentine, and Krucible featuring Lance King.
The interesting thing about Stage 3 is most of these are all up and coming bands.18 year old Dario Lorina is an amazing guitar player. Look him up on you tube and watch this kid play. He is very good. Karnevil is his new band. I don’t know much about them, but with Lorina on the six string, they will be interesting.
Dirty Penny is one of the better new glam bands out there. They aren’t very original, but their new CD is pretty good.
The Gypsy Pistoleros close out Friday Night on stage three, and they are the must see band in Rocklahoma. The Flamenco twist on their upbeat glam tunes is certainly one that I would like to see.
Sweet FA is the late 80’s/early 90’s hard rock band that reunited in 2007. Their new CD, The Lost Tapes is quite good. I have seen this band live, and I know they are pretty good.
Banshee is another must see band on stage three. They are one of the heavier acts on this stage. If you haven’t heard any of their music, I recommend checking them out. They will surprise you for sure.
Gods of Kansas is a newer band that is starting to make some waves. They are currently playing a bunch of live shows all over the U.S.
Pownd is a newer heavy metal band that is located 2.5 hours down the road from me in Richmond, Kentucky.
Their newest CD is highly rated across the web. I will be reviewing this one soon.
Shadowside and Asphalt Valentine are two of Chavis Records newer bands. Shadowside has one cd out, and one
on the way. Asphalt Valentine is a hard rocking band from Atlanta, GA. Their debut will be released within
the next couple of months. (I will also be checking them out locally in two weeks).
I don’t know the other acts on this stage (Crooked X, Lipstick Magazine, Mindflow, Warmachine, and Krucible) but I will be exploring these bands in the months to come.
As a whole….Rocklahoma offers plenty of Nostalgia, but also a slew of NEW bands trying to make it in the music world. The addition of two more stages in 2008 greatly improves this event over the 2007 show.
I can only hope that I will be able to make the trek there for this show. I can’t imagine missing this event!