From the ashes of Dangerous Toys, Jason McMaster and Paul Lidel formed the band Broken Teeth. According to Jason McMaster, “The band started as a joke, as an AC/DC rip off on purpose kind of thing and sort of snowballed. ”
The band may have started as a joke, but the music that this hard rocking five piece outfit is putting out, is not. Guilty Pleasure is the 2nd studio disc by Broken Teeth. This band also features Dangerous Toys alumni, Mike Watson on bass, (ex-Pariah) Jared Tuten on Guitar and Bruce Rivers on Drums on this disc. The sound is definitely a derivative of AC/DC. Jason McMaster’s raspy vocals give these tunes a little more edge, but he does try to use a lot of Bon Scott mannerisms in his vocals. Amazingly, this sounds a lot different than Dangerous Toys. This is less sleaze and more straight forward hard rock.
Paul Lidel has Angus Young’s three chord guitar sound down pat and does a great job.
At first I was disappointed by this disc, as I was expecting Broken Teeth to be a little closer in sound to Dangerous Toys. After successive listens, I got over the whole DT thing, and started getting into this disc a lot more. Guilty Pleasure is full of hard edged AC/DC style party rock.
There are a few stand out tracks on this disc including the title track, Guilty Pleasures, complete with its AC/DC trademark “OY”!
The blistering Crash Landing Affair is a song that will help you get a few speeding tickets. The rhythm section kicks ass, and McMaster does best Bon Scott. Killer Stuff!
Crash Landing Affair
Down to the Fire is a blues infested number that is infectious as hell.
You have to hear High on Danger and Chaingang to appreciate them. Both songs are great.
AC/DC seems to be missing from the musical landscape these days. Thank God there is a band like Broken Teeth to carry on the torch, while they are away! This CD wont win any points for originality, but is full of great hard rock, the way it should be played! You can hear more Broken Teeth songs at the band’s myspace page here.
Rating: Out of 10
- Guilty Pleasure
- Devil Money
- Hangin’ By The Skin
- Crashlanding Affair
- Down To The Fire
- Second Hand
- High On Danger
- She Dances Evil
- Happy End
Dangerous Toys is a band that I always thought would be a good poster child for sleaze rock. I have picked up all of their CD’s over the years and I have never been let down by any one of them. I always know that I will get a disc full of hard driving tunes with great vocals.
On Pissed, Jason McMaster delivers the goods once again, and Paul Lidel sounds like he has been playing in the band forever.
There is a lot to like on this disc, and it does not disappoint. The title track Pissed, is a great up tempo number that need to be cranked up to be appreciated.
Paintrain and The Law Is Mine continues the fun with two great in your face rockers back to back.
Promise The Moon is an excellent ballad and something that you wouldn’t expect to hear from the DT guys.
Strange is a heavy track full of sleaze and head banging goodness. Great Stuff! Loser has an AC/DC type of sound, and a great party rock feel to it.
Hard Luck Champion is one of my favorite tracks on this disc, and should be my theme song.
Screamin’ for More is an upbeat song that has a less heavier feel that the rest of the tracks on Pissed. There are more acoustic guitars on this song but it has a great sound.
Oh Well, So What! is one of those songs that you would love to crank up and play in your office when you are having a bad day. This is the closest thing to giving someone the bird in audible fashion.
Illustrated Man is a cool song that would make a good theme song for Miami Ink. It is a great way to close out Pissed.
Pissed is a great hard rock record all the way through. There are no filler tracks, and it is a fun party rock record that is a great listen. Sadly, Pissed was released right in the middle of the grunge movement, and got very little attention. It is one of those nice gems in my collection that I like to break out from time to time. You can still find this one online quite often for under $10.00. It is worth picking up!
3. The Law Is Mine
4. Promise The Moon
7. Hard Luck Champion
8. Screamin’ For More
9. Oh Well, So What!
10. Illustrated Man
- Jason McMaster – Vocals
- Mark Geary – Drums
- Scot Dalhover – Guitar
- Paul Lidel – Guitar & Vocals
- Mike Watson – Bass & Vocals
The first time I heard any tracks off of Dirty Looks’ release, Cool From the Wire, I honestly thought I was hearing new music from AC/DC. Henrik Ostergaard has that whole Bon Scott sound down pretty darn close, and the rhythm section of former Harpo bassist Jack Pyers, drummer Gene Barnett could give AC/DC a run for their money.
This was the first major release featuring lead guitarist, Paul Lidel. Paul came out with his guitar blazing, and quickly shows that he is a very solid player on this disc.
Ozzy Osbourne producer Max Norman produced this disc, and the sound is on this disc is fantastic. Cool from the Wire hit #134 on the Bilboard charts, and three singles (Wastin’ my time, Cool From the Wire, and Oh Ruby) were released from this disc. It’s Not the Way You Rock was also on the Johnny Be Good movie sound track.
Dirty Looks never gained the fame and fortune that many of the hard rock bands from the late 80’s did. As a result, Cool From the Wire is a disc that was over looked by many. It is an all killer, no filler, hard rocking affair that is well worth picking up in 2007.
Dirty Looks certainly didn’t have an original sound, but they definitely rocked and rocked hard. Paul Lidel’s guitar work smokes on this disc and makes this one worth hearing. Fans of 80’s hard rock and AC/DC fans ought to give this one a look. If you like these tunes, you can still pick this disc up at Amazon.com and CDUniverse.com.
Rating: Out of 10
- Cool From The Wire
- It’s Not The Way You Rock
- Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You
- Oh Ruby
- Wastin’ My Time
- Put a Spell On You
- No Brains Child
- Get It Right
- It’s A Bitch
- Get Off
Dirty Looks is:
Henrik Ostergaard – Vocals
Paul Lidel – Guitars
Jack Pyers – Bass
Gene Barnett – Drums
A recent poster at another site called Poison “a footnote, albeit a fairly listenable one.” I started thinking about the criticism about Poison and some of the other bands participating in the Rocklahoma Rock Festival, and got the old creative juices flowing. How many of the bands participating in this show are still quality acts in 2007? How many of the acts have such a strong catalog of music that they can put on live shows each year and sell thousands of tickets? The first band that comes to mind is none other than the glam rock band, Poison.
Poison has been touring almost annually, with very little new music to support their touring efforts. The bottom line is, people love Poison, and I am no exception. Any band that has sold more than 25 million albums is more than a mere footnote. They are a 80’s hard rock staple and always will be. The strength of their tunes is what pulls people in to big shows like the Rocklahoma Rock Festival.
Flesh & Blood is one of Poison’s very successful studio discs, and still stands up well in 2007. Flesh & Blood hit #2 on the U.S. charts, and has sold over 3 million copies to date. This disc spawned three gold singles: “Unskinny Bop,” “Ride the Wind,” and the ballad “Something To Believe In.”
The first couple of tracks off of Flesh and Blood are throw aways to me, but this disc picks up steam at Sacrifice (Flesh & Blood) and doesn’t let up from there.
Swampjuice (Soul-O) is nothing more than an acoustical little romp leading up to Unskinny Bop. Unskinny Bop was a huge hit for Poison. The guitar riff was extremely simple, but the song itself was infectious.
Let it Play wasn’t a hit for Poison, but it is a fun, upbeat song and keeps the pace going well on Flesh and Blood.
Life Goes On is one of two, killer ballads on Flesh and Blood.
Come Hell or High Water is one of the heavier tracks on this disc, but is still very listenable. CC Deville unleashes a few more solos throughout this track. You rarely ever hear this one today, but it is a cool Poison song.
Ride the Wind is a very good upbeat rocker that was a modest hit for Poison. The video below does a fairly good capturing the energy from the band’s live shows.
Don’t Give Up An Inch is a catchy up tempo rocker that got lost in the sea of hits on Flesh & Blood.
Something to Believe In needs no introduction. This song is one of the biggest hit songs Poison has ever released. It is a classic power ballad, and one that I still greatly enjoy today.
Ball and Chain is an ok rocker on Flesh and Blood, but doesn’t stand up to some of the other great songs here.
Life Loves a Tragedy is a semi ballad that turns into an upbeat energetic rock track on Flesh & Blood. If this song would have appeared on another Poison disc, it would have been another hit.
Poor Boy Blues closes this disc out with a blues infested number. It is a fun song, and the band sounds like they have a good time with it.
Flesh & Blood is one of three must own discs in the Poison catalog. This disc if full of great hits, and classic Poison songs. The strength of the music on this disc shows why Poison is still able to draw big crowds at huge shows like the Rocklahoma Rock Fest, and proves that they are more than a mere footnote. If you don’t own this in 2007, you ought to grab this, it is great!
Rating: Out of 10
- Strange Days of Uncle Jack
- Valley of Lost Souls
- Sacrifice (Flesh & Blood)
- Swampjuice (Soul-O)
- Unskinny Bop
- Let It Play
- Life Goes On
- Come Hell Or High Water
- Ride The Wind
- Don’t Give Up An Inch
- Something To Believe In
- Ball And Chain
- Life Loves A Tragedy
- Poor Boy Blues
This self titled disc is the 2nd studio release by Big Cock. If you heard the first disc, Year of the Cock, you already probably familiar with this band’s 80’s Hard Rock Sound. The sound has not changed on Big Cock’s sophomore effort. They lyrics may be a little more explicit at times, and some of lyrics are dripping with sexual humor.
There are a few stand out tracks on this disc, including Real Man, Ride on Me, Real Hard, Get Me Up and the straight forward cover of the Tom Jones’ song, She’s A Lady.
Ride on Me
So Easy Bein’ Me has a punk feel to it, and reminds me of when Motley Crue covered Anarchy in the UK.
I could have lived without a couple of the songs, including the 50’s sounding Scottsdale Girls, and country flavored Let’s Make Love. Both of these tracks seem out of place here. The lyrics for Scottsdale Girls are kind of funny, but something about this song has a 50’s, Jimmy Buffett, Beach Boys, bubble gum type of feel about it.
I wonder if Robert Mason is about ready to bust a gut, while trying to keep a straight face singing Every Inch of My Love. The lyrics are pure cheese, but this is still a cool sounding track. This is the closest thing you will get to a power ballad from Big Cock.
Take Me and Booze My Baby are ok tracks, but are nothing special.
As a whole, I tend to like this Big Cock disc, a little more than the debut effort. Big Cock’s sound and delivery are constant on both discs, and are a solid listen. This disc still wont make Robert Mason a household name, but it sounds like he enjoys what he is doing, and that comes across in the music.
Neither one of the Big Cock discs will set your world on fire, but if you like bands with that great 80’s hard rock sound, and are a fan of bands like Lynch Mob, and AC/DC, you will probably want to both of them. If you pick one, I’d say this is the one to get.
- Second Coming
- Fucked Up
- Real Man
- Ride on Me
- Real Hard
- She’s A Lady
- So Easy Bein’ Me
- Every Inch of My Love
- Dirty Girl
- Scottsdale Girls
- Get Me Up
- Take Me
- Booze & My Baby
- Let’s Make Love
One of my nicer used disc finds over the last couple of weeks is Lynch Mob’s REvolution. My used copy came with a nice slip cover case, complete with a postcard and poster of the band. REvolution marks the return of Robert Mason on lead vocals after more than a decade of absence.
Essentially, what you get on REvolution are some reworked Dokken and Lynch Mob songs. The versions here are far heavier than the originals by either band. Either George Lynch has his guitar tuned down, in a key that I am not use to hearing him play in, or the bass is way heavier in these tracks. I can’t put my finger on it exactly, but the end result are some of the heaviest sounding tracks that I have ever heard George Lynch play on.
Some fans are going to love this, and some are going to hate the reworked Dokken songs. I enjoy the new twist and the more heavy metal approach to the songs.
There are a couple of problems which I should point out quickly. There is no new material on REvolution. Nada, Zilch, Zip! A couple of new songs could have helped out this collection greatly, but I think that was outside the scope of George’s vision for this disc.
Problem # 2, I have listened to these songs a few times now, and quite frankly, I do not find any of these versions superior to the originals.
With that being said, if this was the first time I had ever heard any of these songs, I would probably be pretty excited about this disc. All of the songs are still quite good, and still very enjoyable. Robert Mason does a great job putting his own spin on these songs, and George Lynch’s playing is superb as always.
Even though I enjoyed REvolution somewhat, I believe that this disc is probably for the Lynch Mob and George Lynch die hard fans only.
I have included a couple of tracks below for your listening pleasure. I am curious to see what everone else things about these reworked versions. Check these out and let me know what you think about these!
Kiss of Death
Paris is Burning
Rating: Out of 10
- Tooth and Nail
- Tangled in the Web
- All I Want
- Kiss of Death
- She’s Evil But She’s Mine
- Cold Is the Heart
- Breaking the Chains
- When Darkness Calls
- River of Love
- Wicked Sensation
- Paris Is Burning
Butchering the Beatles has the biggest collection of 80’s Hard Rock Artists in one place since 1985’s Hear ‘n Aid.
Some of the songs work better than others, but what you basically get are some heavy versions of the Beatles‘ classic songs.
Some of the stand out tracks are Magical Mystery Tour, Day Tripper, I Feel Fine, Taxman and I Saw Her Standing There.
Usually, I hate discs with cover tunes, but I must admit that Butchering the Beatles is a guilty pleasure of mine. Each cut on this disc is a heaver version of the original classic, instead of faithful covers ala Shaw/Blades new disc, Influence. I get a charge out the the faster and harder versions of these tunes, and I bet this will appeal to a bunch of 80’s hard rock fans out there. This is way the cover tunes, SHOULD be done!
Check out the tracks below, and let me know what you think!
I Saw Here Standing There
Rating: Out of 10
1. “Hey Bulldog” – Alice Cooper, vocals; Steve Vai, guitars; Duff McKagen (Velvet Revolver / Guns N Roses), bass; Mikkey Dee (Motorhead), drums
2. “Back In The USSR” – Lemmy Kilmister (Motorhead), vocals/bass; John5 (Marilyn Manson / Rob Zombie), guitars; Eric Singer (Kiss / Alice Cooper), drums
3. “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” – Geoff Tate (Queensryche), vocals; Michael Wilton (Queensryche), guitar; Craig Goldy (Dio), guitar; Rudy Sarzo (Dio), bass; Simon Wright (Dio), drums; Scott Warren (Dio), keys
4. “Tomorrow Never Knows” – Billy Idol, vocals; Steve Stevens (Billy Idol), guitars; Blasko (Ozzy Osbourne), bass; Brian Tichy (Billy Idol), drums
5. “Magical Mystery Tour” – Jeff Scott Soto (Yngwie Malmsteen / Soul Sirkus), vocals; Yngwie Malmsteen (Rising Force / Alcatrazz), lead guitar; Bob Kulick, (Meat Loaf / Paul Stanley Band), rhythm guitar; Jeff Pilson (Dokken / Foreigner), bass; Frankie Banali (Wasp / Quiet Riot), drums
6. “Revolution” – Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top), vocals / guitar; Vivian Campbell (Def Leppard), guitar; Mike Porcaro (Toto), bass; Gregg Bisonnette (David Lee Roth / Ringo Starr Band), drums; Joseph Fazzio (Superjoint Ritual), drums
7. “Day Tripper” – Jack Blades (Night Ranger / Damn Yankees), vocals; Tommy Shaw (Styx / Damn Yankees), vocals; Doug Aldrich (Whitesnake / Dio), guitars; Marco Mendoza (Whitesnake / Thin Lizzy), bass; Virgil Donati (Steve Vai / Soul Sirkus / Planet X), drums
8. “I Feel Fine” – John Bush (Anthrax), vocals; Stephen Carpenter (Deftones), guitar; Mike Inez (Ozzy Osbourne / Alice In Chains), bass; John Tempesta (The Cult / Testament), drums
9. “Taxman” – Doug Pinnick (Kings X), vocals; Steve Lukather (Toto), guitar; Tony Levin (John Lennon / Peter Gabriel), bass; Steve Ferrone (Eric Clapton / Tom Petty), drums
10. “I Saw Her Standing There” – John Corabi (Motley Crue), vocals; Phil Campbell (Motorhead), guitar; C.C. Deville (Poison), guitar; Chris Chaney (Jane’s Addiction), bass; Kenny Aronoff (Smashing Pumpkins / Jon Bon Jovi), drums
11. “Hey Jude” – Tim “Ripper” Owens (Judas Priest / Iced Earth), vocals; George Lynch (Dokken / Lynch Mob), guitar; Bob Kulick (Meat Loaf / Paul Stanley Band), rhythm guitar; Tim Bogert (Vanilla Fudge / Beck / Bogert & Appice), bass; Chris Slade (AC/DC), drums
12. “Drive My Car” – Kip Winger (Winger), vocals; Bruce Kulick (Kiss / Grand Funk), guitar; Tony Franklin (The Firm / Whitesnake), bass; Aynsley Dunbar (Whitesnake / Journey), drums
Simply said, this is the state of hard rock music in the United States. Only the die hard rock fans know who this band is. It is a real shame considering the strength of some of their previous releases (Hellfire Club, and Mandrake).
For those of you that don’t know EDGUY, this is a German Power Metal band that began in 1992. Their style has matured over the years into a NWOBHM type of sound that 80’s rock fans are sure to love.
Lead singer Tobias Sammet has a powerful set of pipes, and has a vocal style similar to Bruce Dickenson of Iron Maiden. The band features a dual axe attack of Jens Ludwig on lead guitar, and Dirk Sauer on Rhythm Guitar. Tobias Exxel handles the Bass guitar, and Felix Bohnke is the skin basher.
Rocket Ride is the 8th studio disc for EDGUY, and is a damn good one at that.
This disc starts off with an 8 minute melodic monster Sacrifice. This song is full of great vocals, heavy guitars and harmonic keyboards.
The title track Rocket Ride, is a tremendous rocker that falls somewhere between Judas Priest and Accept in style. There is plenty of guitar noodling and pounding drums in this song. Great stuff!
Wasted Time is a very cool Iron Maiden style tune, with plenty of back up vocals for good measure. Tobias Sammet sounds a lot like Bruce Dickenson on this track.
Matrix should have been a hit for EDGUY. Check out the video below for this track.
Return to the Tribe feels a little too much like filler to me. It is a nice jam session, but not the best of songs.
The Asylum on the other hand is a superb cut off of Rocket Ride. The music and vocals are first-rate on this song.
Save Me is a hellaciously good ballad. This disc needed a break from the mid to high tempo rockers and Save Me comes at the perfect time to break it up a little bit. This is another song that screams hit.
Catch of the Century is a fun headbanger. It kind of reminds me of a heavy Pink Cream 69 song. It is very cool and the music is top notch!
Out of Vogue is an ok high speed rocker. I like the music on the track but the lyrics need a little bit of work.
Superheroes should have been another hit for EDGUY, but once again got shafted by U.S. Radio. Check out the video below for this song!
Trinidad has to be the closest thing to Pop Metal that EDGUY has ever tried. It is a very upbeat and happy sounding song. This is one that grows on you after a while.
You just have to love the title, Fucking With Fire (Hair Force One). This is another song that just rocks. This track is more hard rock than metal, but it very good.
The bonus track, Land Of The Miracle is nothing to get excited about. (How many bonus tracks are?)
Rocket Ride is another great hard rock/metal offering from 2006 that will hopefully find itself in a lot more people’s hands before it disappears into obscurity. If you are a fan of NWOBHM type of music, you need to check out EDGUY’s Rocket Ride. This disc will likely appeal to fans of bands such as Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and Accept.
Don’t miss this!
Rating:Out of 10
2. Rocket Ride
3. Wasted Time
5. Return To The Tribe
6. Asylum, The
7. Save Me
8. Catch Of The Century
9. Out Of Vogue
12. Fucking With Fire (Hair Force One)
13. Land Of The Miracle – Live In Brazil (Limited Edition Bonus Track)
This disc features the vocal talents of Tony Martin, the expert bass playing of former Whitesnake bassist, Neil Murray, guitarist Rolf Munkes, and ex-Silent Force drummer, Andre Hilgers.
I have always thought that Tony was one of Black Sabbath’s most under rated singers, so I could not resist checking out Raven Ride. I am glad I did. This is a pretty good melodic metal offering by Empire.
The title track, Raven Ride is one of the better tracks on the disc. This song has a DIO feel about it. Killer vocals and music to match. Breathe is a heavy but cool track in the vein of Black Sabbath.
Carbon Based Lifeform is a throw away track to me. I didn’t care for this one very much. Satanic Curses on the other hand sounds like Dio era Black Sabbath. This is a very good track.
Al Sirat – The Bridge To Paradise is a great follow up to Satanic Curses, and also carries that heavy Sabbath feel to it. Neil Murray’s heavy bass compliments Rolf Munkes guitar greatly, and Tony Martin‘s vocals are excellent here.
What Would I Do? is a heavy low to mid tempo keyboard driven number with more great vocals by Martin. This song is slowly growing on me.
Changing World is great except for this electronic drum beat that goes on through half of the track. I could live without that extra beat. It reminds me of something that Genesis has done in some of their songs.
Tony Martin growls as well as sings on Maximum. I didn’t like this track at first, but once I got over the growling, I found this song kind of catchy.
I will let the track, I Can’t Trust Myself do the talking for itself. This could have been a hit off of this record. Give it a listen below, and see what you think.
I Can’t Trust Myself
The Devil Speaks, The Sinner Cries closes this disc with a very doomy Sabbath style track. Martin’s vocals are great, but this track is a little too slow for me.
Empire is a pretty good listen from beginning to end. Tony Martin’s vocals shine more often than not, as does the music. Fans of Tony Martin’s previous work with Black Sabbath, Tyr and Headless Cross, will love this disc.
Rating: Out of 10
- The Raven Ride
- Carbon Based Lifeform
- Satanic Curses
- Al Sirat – The Bridge To Paradise
- What Would I Do?
- Changing World
- I Can’t Trust Myself
- The Devil Speaks, The Sinner Cries
How does the sequel compare to the original? Just like most sequels, this one is not as good as the original. The dual guitars of Michael Wilton and Mike Stone don’t quite meet up to the great sound of the former dynamic duo of Wilton and Chris DeGarmo. They do sound very good, but maybe not quite as powerful or melodic as the original guitar tandem.
Once upon a time, Geoff Tate’s voice could reach notes that most rock singers could only dream about imitating. Watch the video below; if you aren’t blown away by his amazing vocals, you are probably reading the wrong website:
In 2006, and beyond Geoff Tate can still sing well, but those amazing high notes has moved out of his vocal ability. With that being said, the last few Queensryche releases have been mostly disappointing to me, so my approach to Mindcrime II was timid at best.
Amazingly, I would consider Mindcrime II is the best disc that the band put out since 1994’s Promised Land. Mindcrime II continues on with the story of Nikki, and the infamous Dr. X. It may take you a couple of times to absorb the story from the music, but I am betting you will want to listen to this a few times anyway.
Some of the highlights of this disc are I’m American.
One Foot in Hell is a very cool, heavy progressive number. Hostage is a dark and heavy track that seems to grow on me more with each listen. The Hands is one of those tracks that you will need to listen to over and over a few times. The guitar work is superb, and sounds pretty close to classic Queensryche.
The Chase, featuring the combined vocals of Geoff Tate and (Dr. X) Ronnie James Dio is one of the better Queensryche tracks I have heard in a while. Tate’s and Dio’s voices sound great together.
Fear City Slide has a killer bass groove, and is a very good listen.
Every time I listen to this disc, I hear something different, and tend to like the songs a little more each time. The first time I listened to this disc, I was disappointed, but my opinion has changed with time. This is one of those sleeper discs that needs to grow on you.
This may not be the stellar effort that Operation Mindcrime is, or the hit cranking machine of Empire, but is a solid listen, and certainly essential to every Queensryche fan.
Rating: Out of 10
- Freiheit Over
- I’m American
- One Foot in Hell
- The Hands
- Speed of Light
- Signs Say Go
- Re-Arrange You
- The Chase
- If I Could Change It All
- An Intentional Confrontation
- A Junkie’s Blues
- Fear City Slide
- All the Promises
If you have been wondering whatever happened to Kix, look no further than the band Funny Money. Funny Money features former Kix members, Steve Whiteman on vocals, and Jimmy Chalfant on drums. The band has gone through some line up changes over the years, but Funny Money has formed a solid four piece lineup with former Centerfold bassist, Mark Schenker and Rob Galpin on lead guitar.
Stick It, is the third studio album by Funny Money, and may be the best one yet. Legendary producer Beau Hill, mixed this disc, and all of the songs flow well as a result of it. Stick It should give Kix fans everything they have been wanting. This is a very strong offering full of AC/DC style, blues infested hard rock.
Check out a couple of tracks below:
About Women is a live video performance by Funny Money.
Slow to Blow is a great track that will give you an idea of what you will hear on Stick It.
If you like either of the tracks above, you need to pick this up. This is a disc that will appeal to 80’s Hard Rock fans, Kix fans, and probably quite a few AC/DC fans as well. It is solid all the way through, and well worth checking out.
Buy It! You will be glad you did!
Rating: Out of 10
- By The Balls
- Hot On Your Heels
- Big Bang Boom
- All Tied Up
- Fool’s Confession
- Slow To Blow
- Nowhere At All
- Play Me Like A Rhythm
- Thousand Thank Yous
- Weeds And Roses
- About Women
Funny Money is:
Steve Whiteman – Vocals
Jimmy Chalfant – Drums
Mark Schenker – Bass
Rob Galpin – Lead Guitar
White Tiger is the band that Mark started up after he left KISS. His band mates are one time Black Sabbath singer, David Donato, Mark’s brother Michael Norton on bass, and Brian James Fox on drums.
White Tiger has a heavier sound that falls somewhere between KISS and Black Sabbath.
Rock Warriors is a very cool track that was not mixed very well. Donato’s vocals get washed out by the guitars and bass on this track. The remixed version of Rock Warriors on this disc, takes care of this problem, and is a much better sounding version.
Love/Hate is an upbeat song with a great guitar sound. Bad Time Coming is a mide tempo song that has a heavy bass groove by Norton, and great vocals by David Donato. This is a good song, and could have been a potential hit for this band.
The production on Runaway sounds a little muddy to me, but the song is good, and its style kind of reminds me of Savatage. Mark St.John has some excellent soloing on this track.
Still Standing Strong is a very good heavy track. The mixing on this track was heavy on the guitars and bass, Donato’s vocals get a little washed out, but its still a good song.
Live to Rock is a catchy track with simple lyrics. Mark St. John has more excellent solos on this song. Very cool!
I love Mark St.John’s guitar sound on Northern Wind. It reminds me a great deal of John Sykes guitar work on the Whitesnake album. This is another cool song.
On Stand & Deliver, David Donato’s vocals stand tall, and Mark St.John plays great thoughout.
White Hot Desire is a good ass kicking track that reminds me some of RIOT.
You can still find White Tiger’s CD on the net in a few places. This CD does have its production issues, but itt is a solid listen, and worth picking up to discover the work of fallen rock warrior and guitar hero, Mark St. John.
Rest in Peace, Mark!
Rating: Out of 10
- Rock Warriors
- Love / Hate
- Bad Time Coming
- Still Standing Strong
- Live To Rock
- Northern Wind
- Stand And Deliver
- White Hot Desire
- Rock Warriors (Remix)*
Fast Forward to 2007! Danny Vaughn has experienced mild success with his previous offerings in Waysted, and later Tyketto. 21 Years later, Danny is off on his own and has released a solo disc under his own name. He is joined by his band mates, guitarists Tony Marshall (Contagious) and Pat Heath ( Brave New World), plus Steve McKenna (Ten) on bass and Lee Morris (Paradise Lost) on drums.
If you enjoyed the Tyketto disc, Don’t Come Easy, you may want to give Traveller a listen.
This disc starts off out with a very catchy, Journey like track right out of the gate, Miracle Days. Badlands Rain has a great guitar sound and excellent vocals to boot.
The title track, Traveller is a very positive, upbeat song, and is one of this disc’s highlights.
Restless Blood sounds as if it could have been a leftover Tyketto song, I couldn’t be happier with its sound. This is another great melodic rock song.
Thats What She Says is an acoustic based number that Danny Vaughn shines on vocally. The video below for the song was taken from the acoustic set, where Danny was opening for Journey in London on March 14th, 2007.
The Touch of Your Hand is a low tempo number and to me, Traveller’s first snoozer. Some people may like this song, but it was a bit too slow for my tastes.
Lifted is a good piano based number. This song may be a little too light for some, but it isn’t a bad song by any means. This song comes across to me as a Christian rock tune. That is the vibe I get from this one.
The Warriors Way is much heavier than the last two offerings, and is a much needed change, at this point on Traveller. This is another solid track on Traveller.
The Measure Of A Man has a very country feel about it. Either you like country, or you don’t. I don’t hate it, but I don’t want it on my rock albums either. (HINT HINT BON JOVI!) I usually skip this track.
Think of Me in the Fall made me want to smack the hell out of the person playing the triangle. (At least that is what I believe it to be anyway.) I skip this song as well.
Death by the Tiger and Better By Far failed to excite me and felt like more filler.
Traveller as a whole is not a bad effort by any means. Danny Vaughn still has one of the better voices in the business, and the songs here reflect this. Traveller starts off strong, but about mid way through begins to take a tail slide. A couple more heavy tracks could have helped this disc out quite a bit. It was a bit too light for my tastes in a few places. While not all of the songs appeal to me me, fans of good melodic rock will probably eat this disc up. You can hear more of Danny Vaughn’s tunes at his myspace page here.
Rating:Out of 10
1. Miracle Days
2. Badlands Rain
4. Restless Blood
5. Thats What She Says
6. The Touch Of Your Hand
8. The Warriors Way
9. The Measure Of A Man
10. Think Of Me In The Fall
11. Death Of The Tiger
12. Better By Far
Tyketto was just getting rolling around the time that the grunge movement took over the hard rock scene, and stalled out any progress they were making.
It is a shame as Don’t Come Easy is a very good melodic rock CD. This CD did not give Tyketto the recognition that they deserved.
The opening track Forever Young was a staple on the nationally syndicated Z-Rock hard rock radio station, and was getting airplay on MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball back in the day.
Wings was also another semi hit for the band and also had a video on MTV. Danny Vaughn sounds great on this track and is one of my favorites here.
Seasons is an outstanding acoustic guitar based song. This song should have been released as a another single. It really is that good.
Standing Alone is the third single released from Don’t Come Easy. This is a great power ballad from this disc. Check out the video below, if you don’t remember this track.
Lay Your Body Down is pure 80’s cheese metal. The music for this track almost reminds me of RATT in some places. Nonetheless, it is a fun song, and worth checking out.
Walk on Fire starts out acoustically ala Uncle Tom’s Cabin, but then busts out into a much heavier but melodic track.
Nothing But Love is an ok track but is not one of my favorites here, however, this isn’t a filler song by any means.
Danny Vaughn is a fan of the blues and shows it on Strip Me Down as he breaks out the blues harp on the intro and body of the song. This is a funky track and very upbeat.
Sail Away has a Slaughter like bass groove about it, but it is a very cool and upbeat way to close out Don’t Come Easy.
A few things really stand out on this disc. The production is top notch, and the band sounds like a million bucks. Danny Vaughn’s voice is fantastic throughout the whole recording, and the whole band is as solid as ever. If this disc was released a couple of years earlier, it would have had much greater success. If you are a fan of good pop metal and maybe some glam, you ought to check this disc out. If you enjoyed the videos above, then this disc is a no brainer for you. This disc is becoming increasingly harder to find, and is starting to fetch higher dollars on EBay now. If you don’t own this, the time to get it is now!
Rating: Out of 10
- Forever Young
- Burning Down Inside
- Standing Alone
- Lay Your Body Down
- Walk On Fire
- Nothing But Love
- Strip Me Down
- Sail Away
Faith and Fire was formed by Tony Moore and Mike Flyntz, former and current members of RIOT. Faith And Fire also includes Danny Miranda from Blue Oyster Cult on bass and John Miceli from Rainbow on drums.
This disc has more of a hard rock/classic rock feel than the power metal offerings of Tony Moore’s past work on RIOT’s Thundersteel and Privlege of Power.
Ready is one of the better opening tracks that I have listened to lately. Tony Moore proves quickly that he still has plenty of vocal chops in 2007.
Villanelle on the other hand did not do much for me. Everything is one of the better tracks on Accelerator. Mike Flyntz cuts loose on this track. It is an easy song to learn the lyrics to, and sing along with.
I really wanted to like Radio Superstar. This song features more excellent guitar work by Mike Flyntz, but I felt it was a little weak lyrically. Breathe is a cool ballad. The opening riff immediately reminded of Whitesnake. This is another song that will stay in my play list.
Faith and Fire is a semi upbeat number that I was hoping would be a killer song, since it shares the same name with the band. This is another track that fails to deliver the goods. Fallen is one of the heavier tracks on Accelerator, and moves into a near progressive metal territory. The guitar work by Mike Flyntz is great, but the song itself is average at best.
The title track Accelerator has some interesting elements to it and although it starts off strong, it seems to get lost in a wash of a progressive metal jam.
Angel is the second ballad on Accelerator, and is one of the better tracks here. Accelerator closes with a track that fans of Riot’s Thundersteel may be able to get into, America. Tony Moore is singing at a much higher octave on this track. The styling of this song is similar to those found on Thundersteel.
Faith and Fire’s Accelerator is not the classic disc I was hoping for. I began noticing problems with the writing early and found myself struggling to get through a couple of tracks. Accelerator does have a few moments, but there are quiet a few misses as well.
This is a disc that will appeal to some RIOT fans, especially those longing to hear Tony Moore’s voice again. You can listen to more of the tracks at CD Baby.com and the band’s myspace page here. Those looking for a quick music fix can also download the tracks from Accelerator from ITunes.
Rating:Out of 10
- Radio Superstar
- Faith and Fire
- Avenue Z
This disc reached platinum level status and peaked at 18th on the U.S. charts.
Being released around the same time that I went into college, you would think I have would have fond memories of this disc, but in 2007, I rarely play this anymore.
To me, the opening track, Crazy, Crazy Nights was kind of lame. This song was a little bit too bubblegum to me. It was a pretty big hit in the UK but not as big in the U.S. A lot of people like this song, but I can’t get into this one.
I’ll Fight Hell to Hold You is a much better song. It sounds more like classic KISS and features some excellent guitar playing by Bruce Kulick.
Bang Bang You is a solid rock anthem that never reached the hit level status that it deserved.
Bruce Kulick plays like a wildman on No, No, No. This is a heavier track than the previous three, and totally kicks ass.
Hell or High Water also sounds like classic KISS. It is a harder edged anthem that I would love to hear KISS play live. More great guitar work by Kulick on this song. Great stuff!
Paul Stanley’s vocals shine on My Way. This is more of a pop rock keyboard driven effort. Although Kulick does have an awesome solo on this track, it doesn’t stand out as much as some of the other songs on Crazy Nights.
When the Walls Come Down is a pretty good upbeat rocker. There isn’t a whole lot to the lyrics on this song aside from “When the Walls Come Down”, but it is still a solid track.
Reason to Live is the lone power ballad on Crazy Nights, and it is a damn good one at that. Paul Stanley’s vocals are excellent here.
Paul Stanley hands the mic over to Gene Simmons for Good Girl Gone Bad. It is a pretty good song and keeps the flow going well on Crazy Nights.
Turn on Night is the more of a pop oriented track.. This song was co written by Paul Stanley and Dianne Warren. This is not one of my favorite songs on Crazy Nights. It feels like filler to me.
Thief in the Night was originally written and recorded by Wendy O. Williams, WOW album back in 1984. The same disc that was produced by Gene Simmons. The KISS version sounds better but this song isn’t anything special.
This enjoyed listening to this CD far more than I expected. I think I must have confused it with Hot in the Shade, which I didn’t care for at all. I am glad to have been reintroduced to this disc in 2007. I will be keeping this one in my playlist for the indefinite future. Thanks to Steve over at Heavy Metal Addiction for picking this disc this week. If you don’t own this one, you need to give this one another look!
Rating: Out of 10
Check out what the Metal Madness Knights are saying about KISS Crazy Nights at the links below: Heavy Metal Time Machine, Heavy Metal Addiction, and Pulses, Verses and other Flotsam! We hope you enjoyed March Metal Madness as much as we did. Let us know what you thought of it, and as always….keep it Heavy!!
- Crazy, Crazy Nights
- I’ll Fight Hell to Hold You
- Bang Bang You
- No, No, No
- Hell or High Water
- My Way
- When the Walls Come Down
- Reason To Live
- Good Girl Gone Bad
- Turn on the Night
- Thief in the Night
I always used to blame my love for hard rock and heavy metal music on my sister. She would come home from high school and play Judas Priest’s Green Manaleshi, next thing I knew, I would race home from school to watch MTV’s hard rock show that was on at 3 P.M. every day. From that point, I was hooked forever.
The other day, I was in my local record shop ( I don’t think I can ever stop calling them records) and was flipping through the used CD’s and stumbled on Dressed to Kill. I saw 30 years of my life flash before me in an instance. The neighbors that I grew up had an LP of Dressed to Kill back around the time when I was a mere 7 years ago. I remember us playing that record over and over again. I remeber the LP cover like it was yesterday, but had forgotten all about those days of playing the record until seeing this cover again. Strangely enough, I didn’t pick up a copy of this until now.
It is amazing to me how some music is so timeless. In 2007, Dressed to Kill still sounds great. The song writing was simple, and the songs were all pretty short. This disc clocks in shy of 30 minutes for 10 songs. For being a such a short listen, it is still a damn good one.
The song I remember best on this disc is She. We must have played that song a thousand times. It has a killer groove and is one of my favorites. I have heard Rock and Roll All Night more times that I can remember and didn’t realize that it came from this disc. No one can deny that this is the biggest rock anthem of all time. I also recall playing Room Service to death, so much so, that I can almost sing the lyrics. Its interesting what stays in your subconcious.
Another song that we played the hell of on this disc is C’mon and Love Me. This is another great KISS classic.
The acoustic intro Rock Bottom is cool as hell. This is another killer song on this disc.
If you haven’t picked this up yet, you are really missing out on an excellent hard rock classic. After listening to this disc a couple of times, you can easily pick up how KISS influenced so many of the bands that became staples in our music collections in the years to come.
Rating: Out of 10
- Room Service
- Two Timer
- Ladies In Waiting
- Get Away
- Rock Bottom
- C’mon and Love Me
- Anything For My Baby
- Love Her All I Can
- Rock And Roll All Night
Per Metal Blade Records, the 25th Anniversary Edition Series are to commemorate 25 years of the LOUDEST, HARDEST, HEAVIEST and the very best HEAVY METAL on the planet, METAL BLADE RECORDS will re-release seminal Metal albums from artists that have and continue to shape and influence the genre.
Did Lizzy Borden shape and influence the genre? I can’t honestly say. If it wasn’t for some recent mentions of Lizzy Borden over at Metal Mark’s site, I don’t know if I would have picked this up. I can honestly say that before 2007, I have not heard any Lizzy Borden songs. For some reason, this is one of those bands that I passed over back in the day.
Metal Blade sweetened the deal by adding Bonus songs and a DVD, all for the price of a single CD. I stumbled on this on my last trip to the local records shop and decided to give this a shot.
Master of Disguise features some guest stars including David Michael-Phillips from King Kobra, and Big Cock, and Joey Vera from Armored Saint and Fates Warning.
Lead singer, Lizzy Borden reminds of Bruce Dickinson at time, but I think he sings at a higher register than Bruce.
The music itself is somewhat different from the hair metal releases of 1989. This is a harder yet melodic rock release that is almost glam in nature. Lizzy Borden fans call this the Lizzy Borden solo cd and not a true band effort. Either way is a solid hard rock effort that I am glad to have taken a chance on in 2007.
The highlights on this disc are the Iron Maiden like Master of Disguise, Love is a Crime, Sins of the Flesh, Never Too Young, and We Got the Power.
The bonus tracks Vampire’s Kiss and The Orchestra really didn’t add anything to the original release but are a nice pickup if you didn’t own this cd already.
Strangely enough, two videos that I never managed to catch during the 80’s MTV Head Banger’s Ball, were those below:
Love is a Crime
We Got the Power
Master of Disguise is one of those CD’s that gets better with every listen. This disc will appeal to just about everyone that is a fan of 80’s Hard Rock. This disc is a solid intro and may whet your appetite for their new disc coming out this summer. You can find more information on Lizzy Borden at LizzyBorden.com. or at their myspace page here.
- Master of Disguise
- One False Move
- Love is a Crime
- Sins of the Flesh
- Never Too Young
- Be One of Us
- Waiting in the Wings
- Roll Over and Play Dead
- Under the Rose
- We Got the Power
- Vampires Kiss (Bonus Track)
- The Orchestra (Bonus Track)
Lizzy Borden is:
Lizzy Borden – Vocals
David Michael Phillips – Guitars
Ronnie Judge – Guitars
Mychal Davis – Bass
Joey Scott – Drums
My special Tin cover edition of MKII arrived in the mail on Monday. Yea!! The CD and booklet came in a cool tin box (pictured to the left) and the CD came with the video for Lost and Gone (see below.)
I have been anxiously awaiting this new disc by Masterplan. This CD is the 3rd by the band, but the first with former Riot vocalist Mike DiMeo, and Yngwie Malmstee drummer Mike Terrana. Mike DiMeo has some huge shoes to fill, as he is filling the lead vocal position that was vacated by Jorn Lande late in 2006.
MK II starts with a majestic opening called Phoenix Rising, before blasting off with a high speed power metal offering, Warriors Cry. This isn’t my favorite track on this disc by any means, and seems like an odd placement early in the disc.
Lost and Gone on the other hand is a very cool radio ready mid tempo rock song. It is one of my early favorites on MK II.
Keeps Me Burning is a very good upbeat rocker and a nice follow up to Lost and Gone. This could easily be the second single from MKII.
Take Me Over is an great melodic track. DiMeo’s voice shines hear. ( I can almost hear Jorn singing this.) Roland Grapow absolutely flies on the guitar on this track. Great Stuff!
I really could not get into I’m Gonna Win. I did not care for the melody on this song. The song has a good message to it, but I would have preferred a different arrangement all together on this one.
Yes! Now this is what I am talking about! Watching the World is an up tempo rocker with a very cool majestic sounding keyboard by Axel Mackenrot. This is another excellent head banger on MK II.
Call the Gipsy is a very cool mid tempo number. DiMeo sings in a lower register quite a bit on this song, and sounds very much like Jorn Lande here. A short but great track.
I had to listen to Trust In You a couple of times to really gain an opinion. This track stars as slow piano based number, and builds into mid to low tempo guitar driven song. At this point, I think Mike DiMeo could sing the alphabet and sound good, but this song didn’t really grab me. I think as I continue to hear it, it will grow me on me more. The music is superb, but I need more time with this one.
If you are going to name a song after your band, it better be damn good. Masterplan is a full out power metal assault. DiMeo’s vocals are awesome, and the rest of band chants MAS – TER – PLAN! What is not to love? The band sounds like they are ready to blast off on this track. Too cool!
Enemy is the third song on MKII that I could see a possible single being made from. Roland Grapow really kicks it into gear on this song. Mike Terrana keeps the beat going strong and creates the need to break out the air drums. Great!
Heart of Darkness is another track that I could easily hear Jorn singing. DiMeo shows off his powerful voice on this track. I like Axel Mackenrott’s keyboards here a lot. As a whole this a whale of a song. It has multiple tempo changes, killer guitar work, great vocals and keyboards. It is a very good way to close out MKII.
Now the answer to the question that a lot of Masterplan fans are asking, is this CD as good as Aeronautics. For me, it is not. MK II is a solid offering, but it would have taken a lot to surpass Aeronautics. I do believe that this line up of Masterplan has the ability to make some amazing music together, and that the potential for greatness still lies ahead for these guys. There are some signs of pure metal brilliance on MK II. This disc will certainly appeal to Masterplan fans, and will probably make a bunch of new fans as well.
Rating: Out of 10
- Phoenix Rising
- Warriors Cry
- Lost and Gone
- Keeps Me Burning
- Take Me Over
- I’m Gonna Win
- Watching the World
- Call the Gipsy
- Trust In You
- Heart of Darkness
A new surprise contender for best album of 2007 has come from the Norway Metal band Grand Lux. I never heard of these guys before digging up some info on them last month, I heard a couple of songs, and decided to pick up their new disc on a whim. Based on what I have heard on Carved In Stone, I will be buying their back catalog.
Grand Lux states their influences as Dio, Kiss, Ozzy Ozbourne and Judas Priest. The influence of these bands is quite obvious in the music. Lead Singer, Phil Goode sounds like a mix of Michael Sweet and a dash of Rob Halford for good measure. The guitar duo of B.D. Hughes and Kirk Evin, really make this disc a worthy listen. It is a heavy, yet very polished sounding hard rock record.
One of the coolest hard rock videos I have seen in a while is their video for Escaping the Clouds, which you can view below.
If you like the video above, you ought to give Grand Lux a listen. Carved in Stone rocks hard from beginning to end, and there isn’t a bad song in the bunch. I think if you take a chance on this disc you will be pleasantly surprised like I was. You can check out a few of their tunes at their myspace page here!
Rating:Out of 10
- 1000 Paper Cranes
- Fallen Angel
- Escaping the Clouds
- Eye of the Storm
- Through Dirt
- Like Hail From Blue Sky
- Love Reflection
- Never Fall
- Eternity In Fire
- Rainbow’s End
The Legacy is the debut by San Francisco thrash metallers Testament. I must admit that I am not a large fan of Thrash metal, but I have enjoyed songs by the big 4 (Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer and Anthrax). I can honestly say that before 2007, I have not heard or listened to the Legacy.
I was first exposted to Testament back in 1990 through the MTV Headbanger’s ball, and specifically their song Souls of Black. I picked up that disc back in the day, but never picked up any of their other discs.
Off the Wall starts this disc off with a hyper speed thrash attack. Louie Clemente sounds like he is going to pound the drums through the floor, and 19 year old Alex Skolnick surprises the world with his incredible heavy guitar playing.
I really like the heavy guitar riff on The Haunting. Chuck Billy’s fast paced vocal delivery on this track can only send the masses into a moshing frenzy.
Burnt Offerings teases you with an Iron Maiden like beginning before blasting off into a high speed assault on the ears. The main guitar riff on this track is quite simplistic in nature, but is still very cool. Skolnick and Peterson shred like crazy on this track.
I immediately felt the need to break out the air guitar on Raging Waters, and I think ended up with whiplash from headbanging to this tune. Thrash metal doesn’t get much better than this.
C.O.T.L.O.D. or Curse of the Legions of Death was more enjoyable for me after I read the lyrics. Its an extemely short track, but a good listen. This track is one that needs to grow on you.
First Strike is Deadly and Do or Die are the kind of thrash songs that I usually don’t like as much. The frantic pace of these songs is so high that I can’t enjoy the guitar work as much as I normally would. First Strike’s saving grace is the awesome guitar solo towards the end of the song. With a few more listen’s Do or Die started growing on me a little more. You can almost sing along with Chuck Billy’s chant on this one.
The beginning guitar work on Alone in Dark sounds so good, it makes me wonder how good Testament could sound if Alex Skolnick slowed his playing down below light speed. This song has grown on me a lot more after several listens.
Apocalyptic City reminds me very much of old Metallica. It starts off slow and builds into a furious, head banging, full speed fret flailing monster. I really like this track a lot. It is a pretty amazing way to end (or in some senses start) The Legacy.
I have found over the last few weeks that this disc mixes well with the other stuff I am listening to a regular basis, and I decided to keep this disc in my playlist. I think a little thrash music is good for the soul from time to time. Thanks to Ray Van Horn Jr. for picking this disc in March Metal Madness!
Rating: Out of 10
- Over the Wall
- The Haunting
- Burnt Offerings
- Raging Waters
- First Strike is Deadly
- Do or Die
- Alone In the Dark
- Apocalyptic City
One of the best unsigned rock bands in Cincinnati, Ohio is Prizoner. I have been fortunate enough to see these guys play live several times around my local area. They have been a staple in the hard rock scene in Cincinnati for 20 years or so. Prizoner like many bands in the early 90’s put out a quality indie CD, trying like hell to get signed by a major label, but sadly never getting any bites.
Cincinnati isn’t exactly the place you want to be when you are a hot young band and trying to get signed to a deal. Geography, and the grunge movement stalled any chance they had to get signed and the band actually broke up for a while as a result. They reformed in 1998 and have been playing live shows around town ever since.
Young and Rejected is their debut release on Strugglebaby, a small indie label in Cincinnati. If you give this disc one listen, I think you will like this a lot. This disc is full of great 80’s hard rock. White Knuckle Ride, God Made Woman, and Little of Everything are prime examples of great rock that should have been heard by the world, just not the Ohio Valley.
Greg Anderson is the kind of front man that most bands would kill to have today. Not only is he an above average singer, he has the charisma and personality that so few singers today possess. Tim Keyes may be one of the best hard rock guitarists in the area, and a solid singer to boot. ( You should hear him sing when they play Judas Priest live…..wow!)
Prizoner has made both their debut CD Young and Rejected and their 1994 follow up Voodoo available for download for FREE directly from their website.
Just go to Prizoner’s website and grab Young and Rejected. If you are a fan of 80’s hard rock, you need to grab this. You can’t beat the price!
Rating:Out of 10
- White Knuckle Ride
- God Made Woman
- Distance Kills
- Sioux City Sue
- Little of Everything
- Where Does She Run To
- Rattle and Shake
- Young and Rejected
- Bet Your Life
- 1000 Years
- Eyes of a Prisoner
- Old King Cold
When Don Dokken was revisiting the original multi-track tapes for a 25th anniversary edition of Breaking The Chains last year, he came across the long forgotten masters from gigs the band played in before they were signed to Elektra . Lucky for us, as we get get one killer Dokken live show with the classic lineup, (Don Dokken, George Lynch, Jeff Pilson, Mic Brown) and three unreleased tracks!
If you are a 80’s hard rock fan of any kind, you have probably heard all of these songs before, but the live versions presented here are from a period when the band was unsigned and hungry. Needless to say, it is a great performance, and the band sounds like a million bucks.
The unreleased tracks here are pretty damn good, and Nightrider and George Lynch’s solo (track 7) are nearly worth the price of admission, all by themselves.
From Conception will certainly whet your appetite for the new Dokken disc, Lighting Strikes Again coming this summer. Until then pick up this killer live disc and relive an awesome moment from Dokken’s history.
Rating:Out of 10
- Goin Down (Unreleased Track)
- In The Middle
- Young Girls
- Hit And Run (Unreleased Track)
- Night Rider
- Guitar Solo
- Live To Rock
- Breakin’ The Chains
- Liar (Unreleased Track)
One of the best unsigned bands I have heard in a very long time, is Overloaded from Detroit, Michigan. This killer hard rock band has the kind of sound that will appeal to most fans of 80’s Hard Rock and Heavy Metal.
Overloaded’s sound is similar to that of Slave to the Grind era Skid Row. Lead Singer, Chris Gillen has a killer voice, and reminds me a whole lot of Sebastian Bach at times.
This disc is a hard hitter right out of the gates. Hellfire, Heavy Metal Highway and Shotgun City will have you busting out the air guitar in no time. Lead Guitarist, Erik Kluiber plays impressive solos all throughout this disc and sounds as good if not better than many of the seasoned veterans in the hard rock scene today.
The amazing thing about this disc is the production is the damn good! Usually that is uncommon for unsigned acts, but this is a big studio quality sound.
Did I mention this whole disc rocks?
Where Are You Running To is one of the coolest new songs I have heard in 2007, and I have heard a bunch.
Beaver Feaver is a much better song than the title suggests. The band sounds like they are going to rip the roof off with this track.
The high energy and chugging guitars on Cyclone will send you into a head banging frenzy.
It is a travesty that this band hasn’t been signed to a major label, and promoted. This band is too good for Detroit to have them all to themselves. If the music gods are kind, we will be hearing big things out of this band in the future. You can hear Overloaded’s music at their myspace page. You can find more information on Overloaded at their website www.overloadedmusic.com. For a paltry sum of $10.00, you can pick up their CD at CD Baby. Do yourself a favor and pick this one up today!
Rating: Out of 10
- Heavy Metal Highway
- Shotgun City
- Feeling Overloaded
- Where Are You Running To?
- Beaver Fever
- War of Worlds
- King of the Landfill
Dream Evil is the 4th studio disc by DIO. On this disc, former Rough Cutt, and Giuffria guitarist Craig Goldy replaced fan favorite Vivian Campbell on guitar. Did Goldy live up to everyone’s expectations? If anything, he exceeded them quite a bit. This disc is heavy and melodic. The sound is quite similar to DIO’s past efforts.
Night People is a high speed rocker that starts off Dream Evil right. Great guitars by Goldy and heavy bass strumming by Jimmy Bain.
Dream Evil is always the track that I remember best from this disc. I remember wearing the cassette version of this song out in my car stereo many years ago. It still sounds cool today. The keyboards give this song a Holy Diver, Last in Line kind of feel. Great stuff!
Back when this cassette first came out, I didn’t care for Sunset Superman very much. The lyric was too silly for me at the time. I have grown to like this track a lot more over the years. The guitar work on this song is stellar.
All the Fools Sailed Away is one of my favorites on this disc. This is one of the more melodic songs on Dream Evil, and one of two tracks released as a single. Killer stuff!
Naked In the Rain is a pretty good song, but the image of Ronnie James Dio being Naked In the Rain makes me want to run out of my house screaming.
Overlove is a exceptional high speed rocker. Vinnie Appice sounds like he is beating the hell out of his drums on this one. Great Stuff!
I Could Have Been A Dreamer is another great track that was released as a single off of Dream Evil. This is another classic DIO track, and one of my favorites.
Faces In the Window is a pretty good headbanger. This song is a stand out on Dream Evil that never really got the attention it deserved. I think this would have been a better track to close out Dream Evil with but they didn’t ask me to mix it…lol.
When A Woman Cries is a solid Dio track. It isn’t one of my favorites on this disc, but its a good track.
Dream Evil is still one of my overall favorite solo discs from DIO. Plenty of great tracks on this one that I still play and enjoy today! If you haven’t picked this one up yet, you can pick this up for $10.00 off of Amazon.com. Dream Evil is a bargain at this price!
Wait……you aren’t done….yet! See what the other the Metal Madness Knights are saying about Dream Evil at the links below: Heavy Metal Time Machine, Heavy Metal Addiction, and Pulses, Verses and other Flotsam!
Rating: Out of 10
- Night People
- Dream Evil
- Sunset Superman
- All the Fools Sailed Away
- Naked in The Rain
- I Could Have Been A Dreamer
- Faces In The Window
- When A Woman Cries
Killing the Dragon is the 9th DIO studio disc, and the first to feature current Whitesnake guitarist Doug Aldrich. Craig Goldy was not available for Killing the Dragon as he just recently had gotten married and his wife had a newborn child. Goldy did leave his mark on a few tracks, and has writing credits on Throw away Children, Rock ‘N Roll, and Push.
Doug Aldrich, on the other hand ,had played in quite a few hard rock bands prior to DIO, including Lion, Bad Moon Rising, House of Lords and Hurricane. He was the perfect replacement for Goldy at the time, and his guitar work on Killing the Dragon is awesome.
Killing the Dragon stars this disc off with a high tempo rocker. Doug Aldrich establishes himself quickly by showing off his mad guitar skills. This track sounds like classic DIO to me.
The heaviness continues with Along Comes the Spider. There are plenty of chugging guitars on this track. Sure the title and chorus is kind of silly, but the music is great.
Scream is one of the better tracks on this disc. Its a pretty solid song with some excellent guitar noodling by Aldrich.
Better in the Dark is an excellent upbeat rocker with a cool guitar riff by Aldrich. Dio sounds great here but Aldrich steals the show with some killer guitar solos!
Rock ‘n Roll is one an extremely cool track on Killing the Dragon. This song has an very heavy bass riff. Dio’s voice sounds amazing here. As a whole, this is a very heavy track, and a cool one at that.
Push is probably my favorite track off of Killing the Dragon. Aldrich reminds me of Jake E. Lee on this track. Its a cool song with excellent vocals by Dio. This song may be a little less heavy than some of the other tracks here, but it works.
Guilty would have to be a close 2nd to Push as my favorite on this disc. This is another rocker that kicks ass. This track is also not quite as heavy as some of other tracks on Killing the Dragon.
The guitar work on Throw Away Children is absolutely superb. If it wasn’t for Aldrich’s playing, I would probably skip this track.
Before the Fall has a very Deep Purple sounding keyboard throughout the song, but the guitars are far heavier than any Deep Purple track. Once again, the guitar work is great, but I consider this an average DIO track. It is good, but not great.
The keyboards on Cold Feet give this song a less heavy feel to it. I like this song, but I don’t think I would have placed this as the last song on the disc.
Bottom line, If you want to hear an above average hard rock disc, with amazing vocals and stellar guitar work, you need to pick up Killing the Dragon. There are at least 4 songs on this disc that are mainstays on my play list today. DIO fans should not hesitate picking this up.
Rating: Out of 10
- Killing the Dragon
- Along Comes a Spider
- Better in the Dark
- Rock ‘n Roll
- Throw Away Children
- Before the Fall
- Cold Feet
Ronnie James Dio – vocals
Doug Aldrich – guitar
Jimmy Bain – bass, keyboards
Simon Wright – drums
Dehumanizer is the 16th studio disc by Black Sabbath, and the third featuring Ronnie James Dio on vocals. Ronnie returned to Black Sabbath after an 11 year hiatus in which he was performing as a solo artist.
This disc features the same lineup from the Mob Rules disc, which is Iommi on guitar, Butler on bass, Appice on drums and Dio on vocals.
Typically when people talk about Dio singing in Black Sabbath they will often refer to Heaven and Hell, and Mob Rules. Dehumanizer rarely gets mentioned, and that is a shame. It is a heavy disc, and easily as solid as the first two with RJD.
This disc starts off with Computer God, which is a very heavy track to start the pace of Dehumanizer. This is a well written and performed song, and quite possibly one of their best.
After All is a very dark and heavy track that sounds like it was a left over from the period when Ozzy was still in the band. This is a bit too dark for my tastes.
After All (the dead)
TV Crimes on the other hand is a killer track that I absolutely love. The tempo is high paced, and Dio sounds awesome on vocals. This is one that I hope they perform live on the Heaven and Hell tour. This is essential for any Sabbath fan.
Another track that I like a lot on Dehumanizer is Letters from Earth. This is another well written song, with cool lyrics, and superb playing by Iommi. Geezer’s bass sounds like it is going to rip the walls down, and Appice crushes on the drums here. Great Stuff!
Master of Insanity starts with a dark and gloomy bass riff by Geezer, and turns into a heavy rocker, that resembles more of a DIO solo track than a Black Sabbath song. Nonetheless, it is a good song, and one of the better ones on Dehumanizer.
Master of Insanity
I love the chugging guitars and fast paced bass rhythm of Time Machine. This song is another Dehumanizer stand out.
Sins of the Father is one of the most different Sabbath tracks I have heard in a while. It seems that Geezer’s bass is mixed so that it less audible. Iommi’s guitar seem to be tuned in a different key on this track. The end result is a very cool 80’s sounding Metal song.
Something about the track Too Late reminds me of Queensryche in a sense. It starts off as a low tempo acoustic track that allows Dio’s voice to shine, but then breaks in a heavy metal behemoth about midway through. This is one of those songs that you may not get the first time. I bet if you sit down, crank this song up, and close your eyes, and immerse yourself into the music, you will get into it to. I think it is a very cool song.
I is a track that grows on me more with every listen. The lyrics are cool, and the chorus is simple and sing songy…I..I..I. The music is good, and Dio sounds great as well.
Buried Alive is a song that I just could not get into. Its ultra heavy intro, didnt work for me. Sure Iommi has some cool solos here, but this feels like an average track to me. Quite frankly, I tend to skip this song when it comes up.
Aside from the intro on Time Machine, I can’t tell much of a difference in the Wayne’s World version. They could have used this one instead of the other version on the album, and added another original cut. There isn’t enough difference between the two to really support having two different versions here.
Bottom line, I believe Dehumanizer is a much better disc than a lot of people perceive it to be. It has some tracks that may need to grown on you a few times, and is probably the heaviest of the three discs that have Dio on vocals. It is still a good listen today, and to me and while it isn’t perfect, it is still a must have in my heavy metal collection!
- Computer God
- After All (The Dead)
- TV Crimes
- Letters from Earth
- Master of Insanity
- Time Machine
- Sins of the Father
- Too Late
- Buried Alive
- Time Machine (Wayne’s World Version)
Black Sabbath is:
Ronnie James Dio – vocals
Tony Iommi – guitars
Geezer Butler – bass
Vinny Appice – drums
Geoff Nicholls – keyboards
This disc starts off with the essential Rainbow track, Man on the Silver Mountain. This track has been a staple in most of Dio’s live shows, and still gets airplay on rock radio stations today.
Man on the Silver Mountain
Self Portrait has an older Deep Purple feel to it. It is an ok track, but nothing ground breaking.
Something about Black Sheep Of The Family reminds me of a late 60’s era Janis Joplin tune. This isn’t the Ronnie James Dio that I am accustomed to hearing in 2007. Once again, it isn’t bad, but not earth shattering either.
Catch the Rainbow is a low tempo number that quite frankly, I find to be a snoozer.
Snake Charmer is a cross between the 60’s style of rock with a southern rock flair. This isn’t a sound that appeals to me.
Ok, after The Temple of the King, I can almost hear the bell bottoms swooshing. I am afraid that Danny Bonaduce is going to haunt my nightmares. I can’t get into this song either.
If You Don’t Like Rock ‘n’ Roll is actually a fun little boogie woogie piano based rock and roll track. This kind of reminds me of a Bob Seger track. It is pretty good.
Sixteenth Century Greensleeves is the only other track on this disc that has that hard rock approach that Dio has been known for. Blackmore’s guitar finally starts to show a little bit of prowess here.
Ritchie Blackmore woke up for the instrumental track, Still I’m Sad which closes this disc. He has some good Purplesque guitar licks here, but the over emphasis of the cowbell kills this track for me too.
Bottom-line, only 2 or 3 cuts off this disc are about all you need. It is an OK listen, especially if you want to hear where Ronnie James Dio came from. Man on the Silver Mountain is certainly essential, but the rest of the tracks on this disc vary quite far from the sound of this song.
This is a CD for the DIO and Blackmore diehards only.
Rating: Out of 10
- Man On The Silver Mountain
- Self Portrait
- Black Sheep Of The Family
- Catch The Rainbow
- Snake Charmer
- The Temple of The King
- If You Don’t Like Rock ‘n’ Roll
- Sixteenth Century Greensleeves
- Still I’m Sad
Holy Diver Live is a DVD of a live concert performed at the tail end of Dio’s Master of the Moon tour in 2005. In this concert, Ronnie has an all star band (most of which might consider a supergroup), featuring Rudy Sarzo (Quiet Riot) on bass, Doug Aldrich (Lion, Whitesnake) on guitar, Simon Wright (AC/DC) on drums and long time Dio keyboardist, Scott Warren.
In this concert, this band performed the entire Holy Diver disc, as well as other hits from Ronnie James Dio, and a couple of Black Sabbath tunes for good measure. The band is in fine form, and Ronnie James Dio sounds great as always.
This concert is full of awesome guitar solos, kick ass drumming, great vocals and more mano cornuta’s than you will be able to count. You also get some bonus interviews by the whole band, which was cool all by itself.
This is a 2 hour concert for the minimal price of a new CD. This dvd is well worth picking up, especially if you like to watch live rock shows from time to time. If you like the performance in the video below, by all means, pick this up!
Heaven and Hell
Rating: Out of 10
Concert Set List:
- Tarot Woman
- The Sign of the Southern Cross
- One Night In the City
- Stand Up and Shout
- Holy Diver
- Caught In the Middle
- Don’t Talk to Strangers
- Straight Through the Heart
- Rainbow in the Dark
- Shame on the Night
- Gates of Babylon
- Heaven and Hell
- Man on the Silver Mountain
- Long Live Rock and Roll
- We Rock
Black Sabbath’s Mob Rules is the band’s 10th studio disc and 2nd featuring Ronnie James Dio on vocals. Mob Rules also features the 2007 lineup of the Heaven and Hell Tour, Tony Iommi on Guitar, Geezer Butler on bass, and Vinnie Appice on Drums.
Mob Rules starts off where Heaven and Hell left off, by opening up with a heavy up tempo track Turn Up the Night. Iommi starts jamming early and Dio is in fine form here.
I find myself head banging to Voodoo each time I listen to it. Ronnie James Dio is probably one of the few singers on earth that can make a track like this work. Voodoo has a very good rhythm to it, and the guitar work is quite good, but Dio’s vocals are what stands out the most.
The Sign of the Southern Cross is one of the heavier tracks on Mob Rules. This song is essential to any Sabbath fan. Awesome!
E5150 is a dark instrumental track that will scare the hell out of your parents. This track flows right into the title track, The Mob Rules. This is a heavy track that is essential to any Sabbath fan. Great stuff!
Something about Country Girl reminds me of an Irish drinking song, albeit a very heavy one. I didn’t really care for this track much at first, but it has grown on me somewhat.
Slipping Away is an upbeat rocker that has a simple rhythm about it. Its pretty much the same guitar riff over and over by Iommi. Geezer Butler has some funky bass grooves in this track. It is a cool track but not essential.
Falling Off the Edge of the World is one of the better tracks on Mob Rules. This tracks starts off as a dark low tempo number that only Black Sabbath could pull off, and then blasts off into a heavy guitar noodling , Dio screaming monster. This is probably my second most favorite track off this disc.
Over and Over ends this disc with a heavy low tempo track. Dio belts out the lyrics in fine fashion, and Tony Iommi ends this disc the same way it began, by jamming out. The song itself would just be an average track, by Iommi’s playing turns this into something much more enjoyable. While not this is not the best Sabbath track I have ever heard, it is still a solid way to close out this disc.
Mob Rules is an excellent slab of Black Sabbath metal. This disc isn’t quite as good as Heaven and Hell, but it still very much essential to any fan of hard rock and heavy metal!
- Turn Up The Night
- The Sign of the Southern Cross
- The Mob Rules
- Country Girl
- Slipping Away
- Falling Off the Edge of the World
- Over and Over
Black Sabbath is:
Ronnie James Dio – vocals
Tony Iommi – guitar
Geezer Butler – bass guitar
Vinny Appice – drums
Geoff Nicholls – keyboards