Mustasch is a heavy metal band, that started in 1988 with members Ralf Gyllenhammar on vocals and lead guitar, Hannes Hansson on rhythm guitar, Mats Hansson on bass and Mats Johansson on drums. In 2007, this Swedish metal band has released their 4th full studio disc, Latest Version of the Truth.
I haven’t heard anything from this band before 2007, but one listen and I was hooked. Ralf Gyllenhammar sounds a lot like Ian Astbury from the Cult, however this disc is a lot heavier than anything from the combined might of Astbury and Duffy.
Watch the video for Double Nature one time. I bet that you will want to find more tunes by this band immediately.
The Heckler starts off with the swirling guitars of Gyllenhammar and Hansson. Gyllenhammar’s vocals were a little rough as first, reminding me of Lemmy from Motorhead, but after a few more guitar licks he settles back into his own sound. Cool song!
The Heavy Bass and tribal drum beats of I Wanna Be Loved is extremely cool. I don’t think I have heard a song with this cool of a metal rhythm since the first Phil Anselmo led Pantera disc.
Spreading the Worst is a song that I could hear making the transition to U.S. rock radio if given a chance. This song has a heavy Black Sabbath like bass rhythm, and a jangly guitar riff that is slow enough to show off Ralf Gyllenhammar’s great voice.
Bring Me Everyone is a super-cool,head-banger that changes the sound up between heavy guitar and bass riffs, and to acoustic guitar parts. This song has a definite Sabbath influence on it, and is one of my favorites on this disc.
Forever Begins Today is kind of a bizarre track for me. For some reason, this song has the feel that it should be in a James Bond Movie. It has this keyboard part that brings memories of the 007 flicks, but it has this really cool drum rhythm that helps the song out immensely. It is the least heavy track on this disc (not counting the Scyphozoa instrumental piece), but is still worth listening to.
Once again, Mats Johansson has me playing the air drums on I Am Not Aggressive. Gyllenhammar’s voice jumps out at me a few times, and cracks a few smiles on this reviewer’s face.
The End was a throw away track for me. It completely lacks the cohesion the other songs have and feels like a waste of time. It is just weird, and mixes all of the other songs together with a bunch of odd sound effects before revealing a piano based number six minutes later. This is a very strange way to close a disc. One more good song could have pushed this disc up a couple of notches and The End isn’t it. I probably will not listen to this song again, and it is too bad.
As a whole Latest Version of the Truth is a very solid Hard Rock/Metal offering, and one that I hope people will check out. This is one of the first bands I have heard out of Sweden that wasn’t a glam metal band, and just a straight up hard rock group.
Rating: Out of 10
1. In The Night
2. Double Nature
3. Falling Down
5. I Wanna Be Loved
7. Spreading The Worst
8. Bring Me Everyone
9. Forever Begins Today
10. I Am Not Aggressive
11. The End
Ralf Gyllenhammar – Vocals, Guitar
Hannes Hansson – Guitar
Mats Johansson – Bass
Mats Hansson – Drums
He mentioned that when they were requested to Rocklahoma, they would only agree to do the show if they were the Headlining Act. The band got their wish! When Twisted Sister takes the stage to close out the Rocklahoma Music Festival, they wont have any new music to support the show, but they do have a brand new DVD that was released Tuesday (6/26/07).
Twisted Sister, The Video Years is an excellent disc for all 80’s hard rock fans. This disc gives you all of the videos that the band put out over the years, as well as the video, that MTV banned, Be Chrool to your Scuel.
This disc has one of the bands very early performances, (the first in the UK), and well as several live performances, and great interviews.
This disc is a must have for all Twisted Sister fans, and should be essential for all 80’s hard rock fans as well! It is a disc full of great music, and excellent history on one of the biggest hard rock bands in the 80’s.
- It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll (But I Like It)
- You Can’t Stop Rock’n’Roll
- We’re Not Gonna Take It
- I Wanna Rock
- The Price
- Leader Of The Pack
- Be Chrool To Your Scuel
- Hot Love (1987)
- Stay Hungry (1984)
- The Kids Are Back
- We’re Not Gonna Take It
- I Wanna Rock
- Under The Blade
- The Beast
- You Can’t Stop Rock’n’Roll
- The Price
- Stay Hungry
- Burn In Hell
- Dee Snider
- Jay Jay French
- Mark Mendoza
- Aj Pero
- Eddie Ojeda
- Joe Gerber
- Phil Carson and Lemmy Kilminster
Several weeks ago, my wife and I made an unplanned stop at a Used CD store that I used to shop at several years ago. Flipping through the bins, the other customers in the store must have thought I won the lottery. I screamed out in delight when I found the self-titled disc by Femme Fatale. (Ok Bob Vinyl, you can laugh now.)
I have been searching for this disc for several weeks, and have been unsuccessful getting a copy off of EBay. I used to own a copy of this on cassette years ago, and never got around to replacing it. In 2007, it is nearly an impossible task with this out of print disc.
Some of you are probably asking, who is Femme Fatale?! This is an 80’s glam metal band that was fronted by singer Lorraine Lewis. The band members are as follow: Mazzi Rawd (Keyboards, Guitar, Backing Vocals), Rick Rael (Bass Guitar and Background Vocals), Bill D’Angelo Lead Guitar and Bobby Murray (Drums and Background Vocals) Femme Fatale’s self titled debut hit #144 on the Billboard chart and spawned a couple of videos on MTV.
Waiting for the Big One
Falling In and Out of Love
Usually, I don’t care for bands with a female lead singer, but there are a few exceptions to the rule, and Lorraine Lewis proves to be a very solid vocalist.
The lead guitar work of Bill D’Angelo (R.I.P.) is good, but sometimes sounds constrained. He occasionally gets some good guitar licks in but is unable to cut lose, as quite a few tunes have more of a keyboard focus.
At times, some of the songs on this disc start reminding me of Pat Benatar tunes, which depending on who you ask, is either a compliment or an insult. I think it is a good thing, as very few female rock singers showed their vocal prowess as much as Pat Benatar did in the 80’s.
Is Femme Fatale the best band I have ever heard from the 80’s era of hard rock? Not by a long shot. This CD does have a few good tracks that still sound good in my playlist today.
You can hear more tracks at the band’s myspace page here.
Copies of this turn up on Ebay from time to time, and have hit as high as $30.00. You can also find this disc at GEMM.com. The prices will likely scare away even the most savvy consumer, for this long out of print disc.
Rating: Out of 10.
- Waiting for the Big One
- Falling In & Out of Love
- My Baby’s Gun
- Back In Your Arms Again
- Fortune & Fame
- Touch and Go
- Heat the Fire
- Cradle’s Rockin
Saxon has been a revolving door of musicians over the years and singer Biff Byford, and guitarist Paul Quinn are the only original members.
Judging from the quality tunes on The Inner Sanctum, it doesn’t matter who is in the band because Saxon is still kicking ass in 2007.
This disc opens up with three great crushing metal tracks in a row, and does not let up until you get to Red Star Falling.
Red Star Falling slows the pace down to give the listeners a break. This track has a hauntingly cool feel about it. There are keyboards layered into the track, but it isn’t over powering, and gives the song a cool feel.
Need For Speed is a great track, and will be one of my favorites for a long time. This is the perfect anthem for any racing fan.
Without going into a further song by song breakdown, I can easily say that their are no bad songs on the Inner Sanctum. This is a great heavy metal disc, that will appeal to fans of 80’s metal. The stand out tracks to me are State of Grace, Need For Speed, Going Nowhere Fast and Ashes to Ashes.
It blows my mind that Inner Sanctum is Saxon’s 19th studio album. This band was a critical part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, yet they fail to get the same respect on U.S. soil as some of their counterparts. Inner Sanctum is a disc that takes me back to the early 80’s sound of Judas Priest and Accept. It is a superb metal disc, that is easily one of the best of 2007. And to boot, my copy of the Inner Sanctum came with a bonus DVD with a bunch of live performances. Talk about getting more bang for your buck!! Looks like I need to work on some Saxon back catalog now. For the rest of you, pick up Inner Sanctum! You will not be disappointed.
Rating: Out of 1o
1. State Of Grace
2. Need For Speed
3. Let Me Feel Your Power
4. Red Star Falling
5. I’ve Got To Rock ( To Stay Alive)
6. If I Was You (Album Version)
7. Going Nowhere Fast
8. Ashes To Ashes
9. Empire Rising
10. Atila The Hun
Blood Brothers is the 10th studio disc by Aussie rockers Rose Tattoo. Somehow this band has managed to stay off of my radar until now. After listening to Blood Brothers, it looks like I have a lot of catching up to do.
This disc has everything you would expect from an Australian Hard Rock band: great guitar work by Mick Cocks, some killer slide guitar by Dai Pritchard, excellent vocals by Angry Anderson, and plenty of thunder by drummer Paul DeMarco, and bassist Steve King.
I would describe Rose Tattoo’s Blood Brothers as Heavy Metal Party Rock. This is a superb foot-stomping disc that will make you want to fire up the barbeque, kick back, and crack open a cold one. The stand out tracks are Black Eyed Bruiser, Creeper, City Blues, and Man About Town. I would describe Rose Tattoo’s sound as a mixture of AC/DC, and ZZ Top. It is heavy, but not a clone of AC/DC in sound. The slide guitar gives this band a completely unique and very cool sound.
Check out the video for Black Eyed Bruiser and see what you think!
Although, I have my favorites, I don’t think there is a bad song on this disc. I have been enjoying Blood Brothers, and I think a bunch of you out there will too. For more information on Rose Tattoo, stop by their website here. You may have to pay an import price to find this one, but I have seen copies of this disc on Amazon.com for less than $20.00. Buy It, It is worth it.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Black Eyed Bruiser
2. Slipping Away
3. Once In A Lifetime
5. City Blues
6. Sweet Meat
7. Man About Town
9. Stand Over Man
10. Nothing To Lose
Lost Highway is the CD that I knew I would have trouble listening to. The band has thrown away their hard rock sound, for a pop rock / country hybrid that sounds nothing like their past CD’s.
I found this CD completely devoid of the great hooks that Bon Jovi has been known for. If anything Lost Highway is a boring sellout that will probably be played to death on multiple radio formats. If Bon Jovi continues down this musical highway, I doubt they will be covered at the Hard Rock Hideout any longer.
Judging from the 63 used copies that I saw at Amazon today, Bon Jovi fans are discarding this disc faster than Mercury Nashville can print them.
There is one song that almost sounds like old Bon Jovi. If you listen to one song, play We Got It Going On. Load that song on your hard drive, then take the CD outside, and use it for a Clay Pigeon. You will get more enjoyment out of it that way.
The song Make a Memory is getting massive amounts of play on the radio right now, and has hit #1 on VH1’s Top 20 countdown.
I just don’t get it. I find this song, and disc boring. It is hard for me to believe that this is the same band that put out Slippery When Wet. If I was the guitar player, I think I would find myself in rehab. I would have drink myself into a coma, if I had to play these incredibly monotonous tunes.
Don’t waste your money on this CD. There are far better discs out there than this one.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Lost Highway
3. Make a Memory
4. Whole Lot Of Leaving
5. We Got It Going On
6. Any Other Day
7. Seat Next To You
8. Everybody’s Broken
9. Stranger (feat. Leann Rimes)
10. The Last Night
11. One Step Closer
12. I Love This Town
Bon Jovi is:
Jon Bon Jovi – lead vocals, acoustic guitar,
Richie Sambora – guitars, backup vocals
Tico Torres – drums, percussion
David Bryan – keyboards, piano, backup vocals
Hugh McDonald – bass, backup vocals
On this disc, he had a helping hand by guitarist Steve Stevens (Billy Idol), Robbie Crane (RATT, Arcade) bass, Dave Marshall (Fiona), guitar and Vik Foxx (Enuff Z’nuff) on drums.
Exposed is a very solid effort by Vince Neil and company. I have read where many people have thought that Exposed is the disc that Motley Crue should have released after Dr. Feelgood. I don’t know if I agree with that opinion or not, but the music on Exposed will certainly appeal to some Crue fans out there.
My favorite tracks from this release are Sister of Pain, You’re Invited, Forever, and You’re Invited.
Steve Stevens is an incredible guitarist, and lets loose somewhat on the tracks The Edge and Fine, Fine Wine.
There is only one song on this disc that I didn’t care for, and this is Living in Luxury, everything else is pretty good, and very similar to Motley Crue musically.
Sister of Pain
The song You’re Invited (But Your Friend Can’t Come) was originally recorded for the Encino Man Soundtrack. The version on Exposed was re-recorded with Steve Stevens on guitar and is a little heavier than the one in the video.
You’re Invited (But Your Friend Can’t Come)
Can’t Change Me
Can’t Have Your Cake
There are rumors swirling around that Nikki Sixx may perform live with Vince at the Rocklahoma Music Festival. Whether this is true or not remains to be seen. Vince is currently on the road with Dana Strum and Jeff Blando from Slaughter, and drummer Will Hunt. You are guaranteed to hear some songs off of Exposed as well as his sophomore release Carved In Stone when he performs live. He will be in Cincinnati tonight, and I will be there. I will bring you a full report on the live show tomorrow.
If you don’t own Exposed, pick it up. You can get this disc for next to nothing and it is worth picking up.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Look In Her Eyes
2. Sister Of Pain
3. Can’t Have Your Cake
4. Fine, Fine Wine
5. The Edge
6. Can’t Change Me
7. Set Me Free
8. Living Is A Luxury
9. You’re Invited (But Your Friend Can’t Come)
10. Gettin’ Hard
If Under the Influence was released five years earlier, Wildside would have been a household name. Armed with a sound that was a mixture between RATT and Cinderella, they had the sound, and the look to make it big. Sadly, this disc was released right at the time that the music scene was going through the change to Grunge, and the disc did not gain the success is deserved.
The CD was produced by Andy Johns (Cinderella, Van Halen, L.A. Guns), and even had a little writing help by Paul Stanley on the track Clock Strikes.
I picked this disc up after hearing a few cuts on he syndicated hard rock station Z-Rock. This disc has remained in my play list ever since.
In 2007, Under the Influence is becoming increasingly harder to find, and averages between 20 – 30 dollars on Ebay. It is a disc worth seeking out, if you missed it the first time around.
The band put out a second release in 1995, that was a change in sound (more grunge, than glam) that completely bombed, and the band broke up. In 2004, another disc, The Wasted Years surfaced that contained some demos and live cuts, as well as Wildside’s version of the G ‘N R song Crash Diet.
The released Under the Influence is the best release by the band, and is the release most people are still looking for.
My favorite cuts off of this disc are, Hang on Lucy, Just Another Night, Hair of the Dog, and Clock Strikes.
You can hear some of the tunes off of the Under the Influence at a fan made Wildside page on myspace. Buy this disc if you can find it. You won’t be disappointed!
Rating: Out of 10
1. Hang On Lucy
2. So Far Away
3. Monkey See Monkey Do
4. Just Another Night
5. Looks Like Love
6. Lad In Sin
7. Drunkin’ Man’s Blues
8. How Many Lies
9. Hair Of The Dog
11. Kiss This Love Goodbye
12. Clock Strikes
Drew Hannah – Lead vocals
Brent Wood – Lead, rhythm, and acoustic guitars, backing vocals
Benny Rhynedance – Rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Marc Simon – Bass, backing vocals
Jimmy D. – Drums
Jorn Lande returns with his third disc in 2007 alone. The Revenge is the second collaberation with singer Russell Allen from Symphony X, and guitarist Magnus Karlsson from Last Tribe.
The first disc, The Battle was fantastic, so all of the musicians involved would have to truly raise the bar to surpass that disc. I don’t think the Revenge surpasses The Battle, but it is pretty close to being equal to its predecessor.
Magnus Karlsson once again shows off his superb song writing skills. Without any question, I knew I would be listening to a superior vocal performance from Allen and Lande, and I was right. On six of the tracks both Allen and Lande share the vocals. The other six are split evenly between the two.
This disc starts off with an awesome track, Revenge. This song has a very cool groove with excellent keyboard melodies. Jorn Lande and Russell Allen both sound great. The keyboard parts on this song remind me of Whitesnake.
Obsessed is Russell Allen’s first solo track on this disc. Allen shows off his amazing voice on this heavy, melodic rocker. This is a damn good song.
Victory has a lighter feel to it at first with some lighter guitar picking, but then blasts off with some full out crunching metal. Lande’s powerful pipes shine through on this track. This is another cool song!
Master of Sorrow is Jorn’s first solo song on the disc. This is a balladesque song with lots of great piano and guitar work by Magnus Karlsson. This is one of my favorite songs off of the The Revenge. Jorn’s phenomenal voice shines here.
Will You Follow is Russell Allen’s 2nd solo track. This is a superb, high tempo rocker that sometimes ventures into Survivor like territory. Karlsson’s heavy guitars are a good match with Russell Allen’s voice. I enjoyed Karlsson’s guitar noodling on this song.
Just A Dream is another song with the dualing vocals of Allen and Lande. This was the first song that I couldn’t really get into. The music is good, but there are more progressive elements in this song, and it seems to lack the cohesiveness that the songs before it possess.
Her Spell is Jorn’s second solo track. I have listened to this song a few times now, and for whatever reason, I can’t get into this song. I can’t put my finger on it, but there are better songs on The Revenge than this one.
Gone Too Far is the third solo effort by Russell Allen, and probably his best. This is the type of song that will keep me coming back for more collaberations with Magnus Karlsson. This is about as good as melodic rock will ever get. Great Stuff!
Wake Up Call is a powerful rock anthem, that had me headbanging from the start.
Under The Waves is the final solo output from Jorn Lande. This song is much better than Her Spell, and a close second to Master of Sorrow. Jorn’s vocals are more low key on this song, but he still sounds very good.
Who Can You Trust is one of the heavier songs on The Revenge. This is another standout effort from Lande, Allen and Karlsson. If you don’t like this track on the first listen, your speakers must be broke.
When Time Doesn’t Heal should be essential listening to all hard rock fans. This track is an exceptional ballad, and a pretty impressive way to close out The Revenge.
Once again, Allen and Lande deliver again with another great melodic rock disc. This one is worthy pickup for any hard rock fans. You can check out more of Allen Lande’s music from Revenge at their myspace page here. The CD is available for purchase through CD Inzane and Impulse Music. You can also listen to two of the songs below!
The Revenge –
Master of Sorrow –
Rating: Out of 10
1. The Revenge
4. Master Of Sorrow
5. Will You Follow
6. Just A Dream
7. Her Spell
8. Gone Too Far
9. Wake Up Call
10. Under The Waves
11. Who Can You Trust
12. When Time Doesn’t Heal
Their 8th release, The 8th Sin, this is more of progressive rock disc, than power metal. The songs range from heavy rockers to great ballads.
Nocturnal Rites features the outstanding vocals of Jonny Lindkvist ,the excellent tandem of Fredrik Mannberg on rhythm guitar, and Nils Norberg on lead guitar, Nils Eriksson on bass, Owe Lingvall on drums, and Henrik Kjellberg on the keyboards.
The 8th Sin does not have a bad song on the disc, but the songs I enjoyed the most are the hard rocking songs Call Out to the World, Never Again, Tell Me, Not Like You, and the beautiful piano ballad, Me.
After listening to this CD, I must once again say that Swedish metal kicks ass! The 8th Sin is a great disc, and worthy of owning. You can hear more of Nocturnal Rites at their myspace page and can find their new CD on sale at Impulse Music. Go Buy It!!
Rating: Out of 10
1. Call out to the World
2. Never Again
3. Not the Only
4. Tell Me
5. Not Like You
6. Leave Me Alone
7. Till I Come Alive
8. Strong Enough
10. Pain & Pleasure
11. Fools Parade
If the new CD sounds anything like this EP, sign me up for a copy now! Ripper Owens voice sounds stronger than ever, and the 4 songs on this disc absolutely rock! The guitars of Jon Schaffer and Tim Mills are tight as can be, and Brent Smedley’s Machine Gun style doublen bass drumming is awesome!
Overture of the Wicked is tasty appetizer for Iced Earth’s up and coming CD. Based on what I have heard here, Iced Earth is going to be a band to watch in 2007. They are about to have a breakout year!
If you have enjoyed any of Ripper Owens vocals in the past, you need to get this! You can hear the track Ten Thousand Years below.
Rating: Out of 10
- Ten Thousand Strong
- Birth of the Wicked
- The Coming Curse
With the change in the music scene, Chrysalis Records didn’t want to release this disc. Slaughter eventually signed with CMC and released this disc on the new label. Sadly, after a double platinum and gold album, Slaughter found little success with Fear No Evil.
Amazingly, this is the hardest output by Slaughter, and one of the better releases of the band’s career. Lack of airplay, and a release that was in the middle of the Grunge era of rock, left Fear No Evil as one of the better unknown releases by the band. The heaviness of the tunes reminds of a Dana Strum and Marc Slaughter’s sound while they were in the Vinnie Vincent Invasion. Tim Kelly’s (R.I.P.) guitar playing on this disc is superb. He cuts loose more on this disc than on any other Slaughter release.
The highlights on this disc are Live Like There’s No Tomorrow, Get Used To It, Searchin’, Let the Good Times Roll, and Outta My Head.
Live Like There’s No Tomorrow
Let The Good Times Roll
Hopefully, when Slaughter takes the stage at the Rocklahoma Music Festival they will play some cuts off of Fear No Evil, but since these songs are the least known of the Slaughter tunes out there, I doubt you will hear any of these. You will at least get a double dose of guitarist Jeff Blando, and Dana Strum, as they are currently playing in Vince Neil’s band too!
If you are a fan of Slaughter, you need to pick up Fear No Evil. You won’t be disappointed.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Live Like There’s No Tomorrow
2. Get Used To It
4. It’ll Be Alright
5. Let The Good Times Roll
6. Breakdown ‘N’ Cry
7. Hard Times
8. Divine Order
9. Yesterday’s Gone
11. Outta My Head
12. Unknown Destination
In case you didn’t know, Dave Evans is the first lead singer from AC/DC. He has been in a few bands over the years since his initial days with AC/DC, and is now starting to make a name for himself in the United States.
Sinner is the debut CD released by Dave Evans in the United States. If you love good hard rock music, you are going to love this disc.
Sinner is full of kick ass, hard driving, rock and roll! Dave Evans voice is well tailored for good heavy rock, and this disc rocks hard. Mark Tinson’s song writing skills shine, as there isn’t a bad song on the disc.
My favorite cuts are Back on the Firing Line, Take Me Down Again, Only the Good Die Young, Carnal Knowledge, Turn it Up and Out in the Cold.
Fans of AC/DC and good hard rock music are going to love this disc. You can hear more of Dave’s songs at his myspace page here. You can pick up Sinner at CDBaby.com and ITunes. For those of you who haven’t caught the Dave Evans podcast yet, be sure to check it out here.
Rating: Out of 10
- Back on the Firing Line
- Rock ‘N Roll or Bust
- Take Me Down Again
- Only the Good Die Young
- Carnal Knowledge
- Turn It Up
- Out in the Cold
- Go Down Fighting
- Sold My Soul to Rock ‘N’ Roll
- The Thunder Down Under
This disc is one of the better glam metal discs from the early 90’s. As a result it is averaging around 25 – 30 on EBay today, but is certainly worth seeking out.
Heavens Edge features Mark Evans on vocals and guitar, Reggie Wu on guitar, keyboards and background vocals, Steven Parry on guitar and background vocals, G.G. Guidotti on bass and background vocals, and David Rath on drums and percussion.
Neil Kernon (Autograph, Dokken, Queensryche) produced this CD, and the sound of this disc is very Dokken like.
Highlights on this disc, are Skin to Skin, Play Dirty, Bad Reputation, Find Another Way and Hold on To Tonight.
I still play this disc from time to time, and wonder why these guys never hit it as big as some of other bands that were on the scene at the same time. It is a great glam metal disc and worth seeking out if you don’t own a copy! You can hear more of the band’s song at their myspace page here.
Find Another Way
Skin to Skin
Rating:Out of 10
02. Play Dirty
03. Skin To Skin
04. Find Another Way
05. Up Against The Wall
06. Hold On To Tonight
07. Can’t Catch Me
08. Bad Reputation
09. Daddy’s Little Girl
10. Is That All You Want?
11. Come Play The Game
12. Don’t Stop, Don’t Go
Heavens Edge are:
Reggie Wu – guitars, keyboards
Mark Evans – vocals
David Rath – drums
Steven Parry – guitars
George “G.G.” Guidotti – bass
The new CD Vanity is full of great 80’s style hard rock that was found on their 1989 debut CD.
The lineup of American Angel now features Rocco Fury on lead vocals, Dennis Zehrer on guitar, Mike Bisulca on guitar and back up vocals, Jay Druzsba on bass, Marc Ambrosy on drums and Eric Ragno on keyboards.
I have spun this disc a few times now, and the highlights on this disc are Pantomind, Vanity, Don’t Wait Up and the power ballads, Warm Inside, and Another Day.
American Angel isn’t breaking any new musical ground on this disc, but I wasn’t expecting them to. Vanity is a fun throw back in sound to the Big Hair era of music. If you like any of the late 80’s Hard Rock Bands, you are going to love. American Angel’s Vanity. You can hear more tunes at their myspace here.
Rating:Out of 10
1. While I’m Away
4. On The Hunt
6. Warm Inside
7. Don’t Wait Up
9. In Perfection
10. End of the Night
11. Another Day
12. Turns To Grey
13. Permanent Pause
14. Don’t Wait Up (Remix)
The Swedish metal band, Bloodbound returns with their second studio effort, Book of the Dead. This is a band that often gets lumped into the black or death metal category, but to me isn’t fitting of the music they put out. Their lyrics are often dark subject matter, but the songs are highly listenable. I would consider this group’s sound a cross between Iron Maiden and possibly Helloween.
Book of the Dead is the first disc, featuring singer Michael Bormann. Michael is well known in Europe for his time spent in the band Jaded Heart. I have several releases in my collection with Michael as the front man, so I was interested to hear the new Bloodbound CD. It seems like an odd pairing for him to join a band like Bloodbound (Imagine Jon Bon Jovi joining a metal band like Armored Saint as a comparison) but it actually works very well.
Bloodbound has a sound that is very tight and polished. The reason for it is the roster of seasoned musicians in this band. Two Bloodbound members, bass and keyboard player Fredrik Bergh and lead guitarist Tomas Olsson have been playing together for a long time in the band Street Talk. Both Fredrik and Tomas are the primary song writers on all of the 11 songs on this disc.
Sign of the Devil and Book of the Dead are very cool songs that I replay a lot. The Tempter reminds me of something Iron Maiden would do.
Drummer Pell Akerline sets the high speed pace of Bless the Unholy, and Tomas Olsson provides the guitar noodling and Fredrik Bergh adds the haunting back up vocals. It is an interesting track that is growing on me more with every listen.
After reading the lyrics to Lord of the Battle, I liked this song a whole more than I did on the first pass. It is a well written song, but the chorus may be a little too lengthy to drive the song home.
Flames of Purgatory has that monster bass and guitar riff that reminds me of Iron Maiden again. This is another song that was helped out by the lyrics that came with the CD booklet. On the first pass, I didn’t care for this song. Once I could read along with the lyrics, I started liking this song a lot more.
Into Eternity is one of those power metal songs where the band tries to play at a pace that is far too fast. I do not enjoy songs like this. Yes, the musicianship is good, but this is not for me.
Black Heart is a low tempo ballad that has a sound similar to some of the Scorpions low key songs. It is another highlight on Book of the Dead.
Black Shadows is another hard driving track that I found myself repeating. The guitars of Tomas Olsson really kick on this track.
Not even the lyrics could keep me interested in the song, Turn To Stone. I think this song is just a little too out there for me lyrically.
Seven Angels clocks in at over 7 minutes in length. This is another song that borrows from Iron Maiden’s high paced bass riff. It is a little too long to hold my attention.
Book of the Dead offers a few great tracks, and some that are just average. Power Metal fans may find some of the faster paced tracks more enjoyable than I did. As a whole, it is a solid effort by the new band line up. I hope this band can mature, and produce more tunes for another release in the future.
You can listen to more tracks at the band’s myspace page here.
Rating: Out of 10
- Sign Of The Devil
- The Tempter
- Book Of The Dead
- Bless The Unholy
- Lord of the Battle
- Flames Of Purgatory
- Into Eternity
- Black Heart
- Black Shadows
- Turn To Stone
- Seven Angels
I enjoyed some of the past releases by these guys, and decided to check out the latest effort. The guys have returned to their bumblebee like ways (at least this time it is with paint.) On Reborn, former bass player, Tim Gaines has been replaced with Tracy Ferrie. The rest of the lineup of Stryper are all original members: Michael Sweet on vocals, Oz Fox on guitar, and Robert Sweet on drums.
Quite frankly, I expected Reborn to be awful, which is why I hesitated in picking this up. Surprisingly, this is much better than I anticipated it to be.
Open Your Eyes is a tasty cut that has a more modern, heavy rock sound, similar to what Europe is doing these days. I always liked Oz Fox’s guitar sound, but this is a totally different sound, from the 80’s style hard rock of their past releases.
Reborn continues with the borderline Nu-metal sound. Whether you like the style of music or not, the song is definitely another solid track for Stryper.
With a title like, When Did I See You Cry, I expected a cheesy ballad to fall in line, but this is actually a mid tempo song that kind of rocks.
Make You Mine is probably the closest thing to the 80’s sound of Stryper. I like this track.
Sooner or later, I knew I would have to come across a song that a religious aspect about it. That song on Reborn is Passion. This is a very upbeat and positive sounding song. It is a good song, but will probably only appeal to certain audiences.
Whoa, where in the Hell….oops…Heaven did Live Again come from. This song is one of the heaviest on Reborn and the guitar riff is very Black Sabbath like. This song is going to have to into active rotation into the Hard Rock Hideout play list. Nice!
I didn’t really care for If I Die, but I could see this song growing on me if I listened to it more. Wait For You is very upbeat, and is kind of cool.
Rain is one of the more syrupy songs on Reborn. It is a little too light for my taste, but other people may like it.
Stryper is probably the only band in the world that could make a song like 10,000 Years work for them. When the first words “Amazing Grace” are uttered, my itchy trigger finger wants to hit the fast forward button, to move to the next song. I am glad that my patience prevailed. This is a pretty good song.
I.G.W.T is a remake off the ’88 track, In God We Trust. This is a totally different sounding version. The drums rhythms have been changed somewhat and the bass and guitars on this version have been kicked up a notch. I like the original version, and I like this one a lot too.
Reborn is a completely different sounding record than Stryper’s past releases. This updated sound my alienate some of the fans who preferred the old style of Stryper. I like the old sound, and this new disc appeals to me as well. There are a few tracks worthy of a multiple spins. It is another solid effort by the Yellow and Black Attack!
Rating: Out of 10
1. Open Your Eyes
3. When Did I See You Cry
4. Make You Mine
6. Live Again
7. If I Die
8. Wait For You
10. 10,000 Years
Occasionally, I will stumble on a band that completely surprises me. Hellfueled not only surprised me, but also put a big smile on my face.
Volume 1 is the debut CD by the Swedish hard rock band Hellfueled. If Ozzy Osbourne, and Zakk Wylde had sons following in their footsteps, it would sound a lot like Hellfueled. Singer Andy Alkman sounds like a young Ozzy, and guitarist Jocke Lundgren must have gone to the Zakk Wylde School of Guitar Playing.
Since picking this CD up, I have actually listened to this one more than the new Ozzy CD, Black Rain. Volume 1 starts firing immediately with two heavy rockers, Let Me Out, and Midnight Lady. Jocke Lundgren has heavy solos in just about every song on this disc. His playing may be styled after Zakk Wylde, but even he has learned not to overuse the pinch harmonics.
The video for Midnight Lady, is extremely cool, and reminds me of something Ozzy would have done in the 80’s.
My favorite cuts on this disc, are Let Me Out, Midnight Lady, Mindbreaker, and Eternal.
You wont find any wimpy piano ballads on this disc. Hellfueled rocks hard from beginning to end. It is an amazing debut by a band that will be one worth checking out for years to come. Hellfueled should be mandatory listening for all Ozzy Osbourne fans!
You can pick up Hellfueled – Volume 1 at CD Baby.com.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Let Me Out
2. Midnight Lady
3. Second Deal
4. Someone Lives Inside
8. Live My Life
9. Rock ‘N’ Roll
10. Break Free
11. Hunt Me Down
12. Midnight Lady [*][Multimedia Track]
One of the bands that I am disappointed that I won’t get to see perform at the Rocklahoma Music Festival this year, is Calfornia’s East Bay rockers, Y&T.
I never was able to catch this band live, back in the 80’s, and would certainly get a kick out of seeing them perform now.
Y&T does not have any new material in 2007, however lead singer Dave Meniketti has remastered quite a bit of Y&T’s discography, and has re-released them with bonus tracks. These discs are mostly available through the band’s website here.
The cd Mean Streak is still one of my favorites today. The title track is one fantastic rocking tune, that I am sure will be played live during the band’s live set.
Some of my other favorite cuts off this disc are Lonely Side of Town, Sentimental Fool, Breaking Away and Hang ’em High.
Dave Meniketti’s voice is one of a kind, and is guitar work on this disc is superb. Don’t even hesitate to pick up Meanstreak. It is a great hard rock CD.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Mean Streak
2. Straight Thru The Heart
3. Lonely Side Of Town
4. Midnight In Tokyo
5. Breaking Away
6. Hang ‘Em High
7. Take You To The Limit
8. Sentimental Fool
9. Down And Dirty
On this disc she is joined by Gregg Bissonette on drums (David Lee Roth), Tony Franklin on bass (The Firm, Blue Murder), Erik Norlander on keyboards , Mark McCrite (Rocket Scientists) on guitar and Novi Novog on viola.
Other notable guests on this disc include Arjen Lucassen, Nick D’Virgilio and Neil Citron.
If you haven’t ever heard Lana Lane before, she is an excellent singer who has a sound quite similar to Ann Wilson of Heart. The songs on this disc were largely chosen from requests by fans and friends over the years, and the ultimate criterion for their inclusion was that they were all extremely melodic and memorable tracks.
There are some very cool covers on this disc including TNT’s Northern Lights, Scorpions Still Loving You, Giant’s I’ll See You in My Dreams, and Rainbow’s Stargazer.
The music on all of the songs on Covers Collection is very good. It is very interesting to hear Lana’s take on songs that were originally sung by male vocalists.
Still Lovin’ You
This disc has a huge asking price on Amazon.com, but can sometimes be found on EBay for a much more reasonable sum. It is an interesting listen, and a worthy one as far as cover albums go.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Wall (Kansas)
2. Kashmir (Led Zeppelin)
3. Soaring (Aviary)
4. Hold Your Head Up (Argent)
5. Innocence (Enuff Znuff)
6. I’ll See You in My Dreams (Giant)
7. Don’t Try So Hard (Queen)
8. Northern Lights (TNT)
9. Still Lovin’ You (Scorpions)
10. Weep in Silence (Uriah Heep)
11. Stargazer (Rainbow)
I don’t know if the simultaneous release of Tesla’s Real to Reel and Poison’d was intentional or a coincedence. What I do know is, Real to Reel kicks the crap out of Poison’d in just about every way. Due to better marketing, I am sure Poison’d will out sell this disc, and it is a shame, because Real to Reel is far superior.
With Real to Reel you get 13 songs, and 60 minutes of new cover tunes. (With the Bonus disc, an additional 27 minutes) I have listened to this disc a few times now, and I can tell that Tesla put their heart into this disc. I thought at one point in time that Jorn’s Unlocking the Past was the best cover disc I have ever heard. Tesla has some how managed to surpass that one.
Guitar rock fans that listen to this CD will be calling their friends and telling them about this one! Frank Hannon is the MAN! His playing combined with Tesla’s new guitarist Dave Rude is amazing. Jeff Keith’s voice sounds so good, it is crazy!
I won’t give you a song by song breakdown, because plain and simple, all of the songs kick ass. I can’t wait to catch Tesla live, so I can get Reel 2.
You can hear more tracks at Tesla Real to Reel.com. Don’t hesitate to pick this one up! It is worth owning!
Rating: Out of 10
1. Space Truckin’ (Deep Purple)
2. Walk Away (James Gang)
3. Hand Me Down World (The Guess Who)
4. Bad Reputation (Thin Lizzy)
5. Thank You (Led Zeppelin)
6. I’ve Got A Feeling (Beatles)
7. Day Of the Eagle (Robin Trower)
8. Ball Of Confusion (The Temptations)
9. Rock Bottom (UFO)
10. Stealin’ (Uriah Heep)
11. Bell Bottom Blues (Derek and the Dominos)
12. Honky Tonk Women (Rolling Stones)
13. Dear Mr. Fantasy (Traffic)
Best Buy Bonus Disc
- War Pigs (Black Sabbath) from Real to Reel, Reel 2
- Shine Away (Unplugged, from the upcoming 20th Anniversary Box Set)
- Modern Day Cowboy (Unplugged, from the upcoming 20th Anniversary Box Set)
- Paradise (Unplugged, From the upcoming 20th Anniversary Box Set)
When I read about Poison’d, a few months ago, I decided that I was not going to purchase this disc. I had a change of heart, as I thought it was important to support the bands that I care about, even though the release may not be what I would front from them.
The problem I have with Poison’d, is that 5 out of 13 songs are previously released. If you own the entire Poison discology, you don’t need the majority of these songs a second time.
Problem # 2, 13 songs clocking at 43 minutes, and of the 43 minutes, only 28 is new material? COME ON! Is studio time really that expensive? Sad!
On to the new cover songs……
1) Little Willy – This is a perfect song for Poison to cover. The whole glam connection to Sweet is perfect, and the Poison remake is pretty good.
2) Suffragette City – This song has been remade again and again. I wish they would have picked something else to cover. I do like this version better than Warrant’s.
3) I Never Cry – I honestly have not heard the Alice Cooper version of this song. This sounds like a 90’s Poison ballad. It is ok, but not great.
4) I Need to Know – I like Tom Petty, and Poison does a good job of this song. I don’t remember this song ending in less than 3 minutes ( I checked, it does…lol), but it is solid.
5) Can’t You See – This version does not compare to the original. Yawn!
6) What I Like About You – This is the best out of the new songs! I am glad they made a video for this one.
7) Dead Flowers – There are about 30 great Rolling Stones songs worth covering. Dead Flowers is not one of them. Enough said there.
8 ) Just What I Needed – I was really hoping that Poison would improve upon this song, but this is nothing more than a faithful remake of the original Cars song.
I am a Poison fan, but I would like to point out, that Poison has not released a new (full) studio disc with brand new material since 2002’s Hollyweird.
I am disappointed that after 5 years of rehashed material and greatest hits discs, that this is the best the band has to offer.
There are a bunch of hard rock cover discs on the market today. Poison’d is not one of the better ones in my opinion.
Rating:Out of 10
1. Little Willy (originally performed by Sweet)
2. Suffragette City (originally performed by David Bowie)
3. I Never Cry (originally performed by Alice Cooper)
4. I Need to Know (originally performed by Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers)
5. Can’t You See (originally performed by The Marshall Tucker Band)
6. What I Like About You (originally performed by The Romantics)
7. Dead Flowers (originally performed by The Rolling Stones)
8. Just What I Needed (originally performed by The Cars)
9. Rock and Roll All Nite (originally performed by KISS)
10. Squeeze Box (originally performed by The Who)
11. You Don’t Mess Around With Jim (originally performed by Jim Croce)
12. Your Mama Don’t Dance (originally performed by Loggins & Messina)
13. We’re An American Band (originally performed by Grand Funk Railroad)
Typically, I do not like cover albums at all. When I first read that Jorn Lande was releasing an album full of covers, my initial reaction was, “Oh Hell, here we go again.” One look at the material that Jorn is covering on Unlocking the Past, and it has to whet the appetite of any fan of late 70’s classic Rock.
It took about 30 seconds of the MSG track On and On for me to know that this was going to be one killer disc. This track is easily as good, if not better than the original.
Two of the tracks here (Burn and The Day the Earth Caught Fire) were carried over from Jorn’s debut solo disc, Starfire. Both of those tracks were awesome the first time I heard them so their inclusion here is great, especially for those that do not already own the Starfire disc.
For those of you that still think Lande doesn’t sound like David Coverdale. Take one listen to the track Fool For your Loving. Jorn stays true to the original song, and sounds as good as Coverdale ever has.
Cold Sweat is one hell of a cool cover. Metalhead’s can rejoice that this track, while true to its original, is even heavier than than the Thin Lizzy version.
After the excellent double shot Lonely is the Word / Letters from Earth, Jorn Lande gets my vote if Black Sabbath decide to look for another new singer.
Feel Like Making Love is a nice cover with a solid vocal by Jorn.
Kill the King is damn near jaw dropping. This is great stuff, even for a cover!
Perfect Strangers is one of my favorite Deep Purple tracks, so it was important to me that this song if any was done properly. Not only was this well done, Jorn knocked this one out of the park with his spot on vocals!
I must admit that I wasn’t familar with the KISS song, Naked City. This is such a different sounding track, it almost didn’t fit in with all of the hard rock classics above, but Jorn is such an amazing vocalist, he made it work here.
Unlocking the Past is undoubtedly one of the best cover albums you will ever hear. This well produced disc handles the classic rock tracks with care, all featuring the superb vocals by Jorn Lande that we have all come to love. This is one of the best discs released in 2007 so far! You have to get this!
Enjoy the track Cold Sweat below!
Rating:Out of 10
- On And On (MSG)
- Fool For Your Loving (Whitesnake
- Cold Sweat (Thin Lizzy)
- Lonely is the Word/Letters From Earth (Black Sabbath)
- Burn (Deep Purple)
- Feel Like Making Love (Bad Company)
- Kill the King (Rainbow)
- Perfect Strangers (Deep Purple)
- Naked City (KISS)
- The Day the Earth Caught Fire (City Boy)
The list of guest stars on this disc is huge and includes: Joe Lynn Turner, Jeff Scott Soto, Sebastian Bach, Mark Slaughter, Jeff Pilson, Edgar Winter, Leslie West, Vinnie Appice, Phil Soussan, Bob Kulick, Paul Dianno, Tony Franklin, Marco Mendoza, and quite a few others.
I have seen a bunch of poor reviews on this disc, but you wont find one here. I have gotten quite a bit of enjoyment out of this disc. To me, this is a covers disc, that doesn’t feel like one. It could be because the only constant is Michael Schenker on guitar.
Michael Schenker’s guitar playing smokes on all of these tracks. I have always been a fan of his, and this disc shows that he can sound good, no matter who the front man of his group is.
There are quite a few stand out tracks on Heavy Hitters. Doctor, Doctor is near perfection, and JSS on vocals is very cool. I love hearing Ripper Owens wail on War Pigs. That brings a smile to my face every time.
Out in the Fields with Gary Barden is great. Schenker’s guitars really howl on this song. Money with Tommy Shaw is pretty good as well.
You could spin your money in much worse way, while in your music store. Heavy Hitters is a solid listen from beginning to end.
Rating: Out of 10
1. All Shook Up with Joe Lynn Turner on vocals (Elvis Presley)
2. Blood Of The Sun with Leslie West from Mountain on vocals(Mountain)
3. Doctor Doctor with Jeff Scott Soto on vocals(UFO)
4. War Pigs with Ripper Owens on vocals(Black Sabbath)
5. I’m Not Talking with Mark Slaughter on vocals (Yarbirds/Mose Allison)
6. Money w/ Tommy Shaw on vocals and Edgar Winter on the Saxophone( Pink Floyd)
7. I Don’t Live Today with Sebastian Bach on vocals (Jimi Hendrix)
8. Hair Of The Dog with Paul Dianno on vocals, and Vinnie Appice on Drums(Nazareth)
9. Out In The Fields with Gary Barden on vocals (Gary Moore)
10. Politician with Jeff Pilson on vocals (Cream)
Ok, first off, I am an old school Def Leppard fan. I will take Pyromania and Hysteria over anything else that this band has done. I just don’t think they have done better than those two discs.
With that being said, I wanted to hate this disc. I am pretty tired of cover song albums. I prefer new material over rehashed songs any day. Strangely enough, this disc doesn’t suck.
I honestly think this is most guitar playing I have heard out of Vivian Campbell since he joined the band. Joe Elliott and the rest of the guys sound great.
I must admit some of the songs covered here, I am not familiar with. It is almost like hearing a new track for the first time. That is pretty cool.
Of the tracks I am familiar with, I really like the version of 20th Century Boy on here. I swear I have heard another band cover this tune once before but I can’t recall which band it was. This version is great!
20th Century Boy
I have never liked Rock On when it was on the radio back in the 80’s. Def Leppard’s version is definitely better than the original. No Matter What sounds almost exactly like the original Badfinger tune. Stay With Me is a killer track with Phil Collen on vocals.
Stay With Me
For all the tragedies this band has been through, its nice to see them still putting out quality music. It would be a bigger tragedy to not get another original rock CD from this great band!
Yeah! probably wont set your speakers on fire, but I am sure the Def Leppard fans out there will eat it up.
Its a good CD, and a one of the better ones that I have listened to this week.
Rating: Out of 10
- 20th Century Boy (T.Rex)
- Rock On (David Essex)
- Hangin’ On the Telephone (The Nerves)
- Waterloo Sunset (The Kinks)
- Hellraiser (Sweet)
- 10538 Overture (ELO)
- Street Life (Roxy Music)
- Drive-In Saturday (David Bowie)
- Little Bit of Love (Free)
- The Golden Age of Rock’N’ Roll ( Moot the Hopple)
- No Matter What (Badfinger)
- He’s Gonna Step On You Again (John Kongos)
- Don’t Believe A Word (Thin Lizzy)
- Stay With Me (Faces)
The Ozzman Coverth…….and not very well!
I often wonder why established artists like Ozzy Osbourne subject themselves to full cover albums. Does Ozzy really need the money that badly? Ozzy’s Under Cover CD only left me scratching my head.
Most of these tracks were previously released in the Prince of Darkness box set.
I have nothing against Ozzy. I think he is a hard rock/ heavy metal legend. With that being said, this is not the kind of material that I would expect to hear from. Most of the tracks on this CD are performed better by the original artists.
There are a couple of stand out tracks on this CD ( Mississippi Queen, 21st Century Schizoid Man), but most of the material on this CD is pointless.
Two decent tracks out of thirteen, and dismal track listing at that. This is a CD for those trying fill their Ozzy collections and nothing more. I doubt you will spin it twice.
Rating:Out of 10
- Rocky Mountain Way (Joe Walsh)
- In My Life (The Beatles)
- Mississippi Queen (Mountain)
- Go Now (The Moody Blues)
- Woman (John Lennon)
- 21st Century Schizoid Man (King Crimson)
- All of the Young Dudes (Moot The Hoople)
- For What its Worth (Buffalo Springfield)
- Good Times (Eric Burdon)
- Sunshine of Your Love (Cream)
- Fire (The Crazy World of Arthur Brown)
- Working Class Hero (John Lennon)
- Sympathy For the Devil ( The Rolling Stones)
Spaghetti Incident? was only meant to be a stop gap in between records, not the swan song it became.
The music on this disc is outstanding, and some of the songs are so obscure, it is hard to tell they were cover tunes. The thing I immediately noticed on this disc was the huge guitar sound Slash has on it, and how big the production is. There are several instances where Duff McKagan takes over on lead vocals (New Rose, Raw Power, Attitude and You Can’t Put Your Arms Around A Memory)
I prefer the songs sang by Axl on this disc though. Some of the stand outs include Human Being, Ain’t it Fun, Black Leather, and as much as I hate to admit it, Hair of the Dog.
Since I Don’t Have You
You Can’t Put Your Arms Around A Memory
Ain’t It Fun
Spaghetti Incident? is still worth picking up today. It isn’t the best Guns ‘N Roses disc out there, but it does have quite a few quality tracks that are still worth discovering.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Since I Don’t Have You (The Skyliners)
2. New Rose (The Damned)
3. Down on the Farm (UK Subs)
4. Human Being (The New York Dolls)
5. Raw Power (The Stooges)
6. Ain’t It Fun (The Dead Boys)
7. Buick Makane/Big Dumb Sex medley (Buick Makane – T. Rex, Big Dumb Sex – Soundgarden)
8. Hair of the Dog (Nazareth)
9. Attitude (The Misfits)
10. Black Leather (The Professionals)
11. You Can’t Put Your Arms Around a Memory (Johnny Thunders)
12. I Don’t Care About You (Fear)
Hidden track: Look At Your Game Girl (Charles Manson)
On this disc, you get 9 cover tunes, 2 new tracks.
Warrant’s lineup on this disc was Jani Lane on vocals, Billy Morris and Erik Turner on Guitar, Jerry Dixon on bass, and Matt Fasano on drums.
I was skeptical when I saw that Warrant was covering, Toys in the Attic. I must admit, they did a damn good version of this that song. It has all of the fire the original song contained.
To me, Hollywood is one of the lesser known Thin Lizzy tracks, but it sounds pretty good here, and keeps the ebb and flow of Under the Influence going.
I could have lived without the cover of Hair of the Dog. This has to be one of the most over covered songs in Rock Music. I would not shed a tear if I never heard this song again.
Queen is such a hard band to cover. Freddy Mercury has that one of a kind voice that is near impossible to reproduce. Warrant isn’t the first band to cover Tie Your Mother Down, and they wont be the last. Jani Lane does a solid job on vocals. This version of the song is passable at best.
Suffragette City is a solid cover, and stays very true to the original. This would be a cool song to see Jani Lane perform live.
Down Payment Blues features guitarist Billy Morris on lead vocals. He does a pretty good job, and has a Southern Rock type flair in his voice.
The Badfinger cover, Come and Get it was kind of lame to me. Maybe they needed a lame cover to make their new studio tracks sound better.
I used to think that Warrant’s version of Surrender was pretty good until I heard Zan Clan’s version. I can hardly listen to this song as a result of hearing that version.
It worked as the new tracks Sub Human and Face are decent. They are not not stellar add-ons to Under the Influence but they are worth a few listens. I think Face is the best out of the two.
As a whole, Under the Influence was one of the better cover discs at the time it was released. Future cover disc releases down the road surpass the sound the of this one. In 2007, this is probably a disc for the Warrant die hard fans only.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Toys In The Attic (Aerosmith)
2. Hollywood (Thin Lizzy)
3. Dead, Jail Or Rock N Roll (Michael Monroe)
4. Hair Of The Dog (Nazareth)
5. Tie Your Mother Down (Queen)
6. Suffragette City (David Bowie)
7. Surrender (Cheap Trick)
8. Down Payment Blues (AC/DC)
9. Come And Get It (Badfinger)
10. Sub Human * New Track
11. Face * New Track
The opening track, He’s a Woman – She’s a Man is a high speed rocking affair. It is a track that demands several replays. Roland Grapow and Michael Weikath tear it up on the guitar on this song.
The version of Jethro Tull’s Locomotive Breath is far heavier than the original. Helloween has nearly turned this into a thrash song. Very cool!
One of the strangest groups for a metal band to cover would have to be Abba. The progressive metal elements that Helloween adds to the track, Lay All of Your Love on Me, makes this one of the coolest sounding covers in a long time.
He’s a Woman, She’s A Man
Lay All of Your Love on Me
The cover of Space Oddity remains pretty true to the original, and doesn’t really add anything new. It sounds ok, and I do like the original. It would have been cool to see Helloween do something different with it, but they didn’t.
It is interesting to hear Helloween’s version of Faith No More’s From Out of Nowhere. I thought it was strange that Helloween would cover a newer track like this, considering the age of the other songs on this record. Quite frankly, I like the Faith No More version of this song better.
The super fast bass licks on the Beatles, All My Loving turn this into an interesting sounding track. It is very short, and is over in the blink of an eye.
I am sure that you have heard Hocus Pocus a thousand times on mainstream rock radio. Helloween’s version is a little bit heavier than the original. I like this version a lot.
I have not heard the original version of Faith Healer, so I do not know how it compares to the original. It takes far too long for this song to get going, and it doesn’t hold my interest.
Juggernaut is much better than the track preceding. Once again, I am not familiar with Frank Marino’s music. If it sounds anywhere near as good as this Helloween cover, then I need to be finding some of his stuff.
Helloween’s cover of the Cream song White Room, has a much heavier edge than the original version. It is an above average remake of this song. This sound of this song reminds me a bunch of older Leatherwolf tunes. It has that same kind of feel.
The final two tracks, Mexican and Rat Bat Blue didn’t really do anything for me. They are just ok.
Much like the Overkill release, Helloween’s Metal Jukebox is a solid cover disc, but not exciting enough for most fans to pick up. This is a disc that will be essential to Helloween fans only.
Rating:Out of 10
1. He’s a Woman – She’s a Man (Scorpions)
2. Locomotive Breath (Jethro Tull)
3. Lay All of Your Love on Me (Abba)
4. Space Oddity (David Bowie)
5. From Out of Nowhere (Faith No More)
6. All My Loving (The Beatles)
7. Hocus Pocus (Focus)
8. Faith Healer (Alex Harvey)
9. Juggernaut (Frank Marino)
10. White Room (Cream)
11. Mexican (Babe Ruth)
12. Rat Bat Blue*(Deep Purple, Bonus Track)
Overkill got into the heavy metal covers game, with their 1999 disc, Coverkill. I have heard this referred to many times, as Overkill’s Garage Days, as it was released the following year after Metallica’s cover disc.
This disc starts firing on all cylinders with a blistering live cut of the Motorhead song, Overkill.
Tyrant is a cool Judas Priest song, but I don’t think Bobby Ellsworth can quite live up to Rob Halford’s vocals. It is a solid version, but not essential.
My favorite cuts on this disc are the Kiss cover, Deuce, and the remake of Jethro Tull’s Hymn 43.
Coverkill is a decent release by Overkill, and probably the most mainstream recording offered by the band. Coverkill is a solid cover disc, but it probably one that only the diehard Overkill fans will find essential to their collection.
Rating:Out of 10
1. Overkill (Motorhead)
2. No Feelings (Sex Pistols)
3. Hymn 43 (Jethro Tull)
4. Changes (Black Sabbath)
5. Space Truckin’ (Deep Purple)
6. Deuce (KISS)
7. Never Say Die (Black Sabbath)
8. Death Tone (Manowar)
9. Cornucopia (Black Sabbath)
10. Tyrant (Judas Priest)
11. Ain’t Nothin’ to Do (Dead Boys)
12. I’m Against It (Ramones)