Archive for 1980’s classic rock

KISS – “HOT IN THE SHADE” – REVISITING A 1989 KISS KLASSIC!

Posted in 1970's heavy metal bands, 1980's classic rock music, 1980's hard rock bands, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's heavy metal songs, 1989 heavy metal music, 1990's heavy metal bands, classic rock bands, current hard rock bands, current heavy metal bands, hard rock bands, hard rock music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 1989, heavy metal bands, heavy metal history, heavy metal legends, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 1989, heavy metal songs, metal odyssey, Music, old school heavy metal bands, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 15, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

KISS – I honestly don’t know what’s not to love about this KISS album. Since it’s October release back in 1989, I can’t ever refuse Hot In The Shade the moment my eyes make contact with it… I just have to play it and play it LOUD. This album is chock full of the patented KISS hard & heavy… with all the vocal harmony I could ever wish for. Melodic isn’t the word for a song like Hide Your Heart, super melodic is more like it. There should have been a disclaimer within the liner notes of Hot In The Shade for Hide Your Heart… that stating: Warning – this song is extremely contagious to your Hard Rock and Heavy Metal health!

Hot In The Shade opens up with Rise To It, man, if this KISS song doesn’t get a rise out of any fan of Hard Rock or ’80’s Heavy Metal, then that person should check into the: Sprawling Meadows Mellow Clinic for the Dazed and Confused. Seriously, if I am having a semi-funky day or I’m starting to feel a tad down, Hot In The Shade is a pump you up and psyche you out Heavy Metal prescription I reach for. Metal be thy name.

Even Michael Bolton got in on the act with Hot In The Shade, co-writing the power ballad – Forever alongside Paul Stanley. I guess if you need some teary eyed lyrics, just call Michael Bolton up and he will deliver the kleenex worthy goods. Never the excitable ballad fan that I am, Forever is one inspirational and love infested song. For being the power ballad that it is, I respect Forever and find it to be a decent listen. Plus, due to the intense psyched out mood I’m in while listening to Hot In The Shade, once Forever comes on… I keep on listening. It’s kinda funny how Forever is the song right after Love’s A Slap In The Face too.

Even a deep album track like Boomerang Rocks like there is no tomorrow, Gene Simmons sounds classic on vocals. Silver Spoon is another example of a deep track that resonates the classic hard & heaviness of KISS. Hot In The Shade was released at the tail end of the 80’s Heavy Metal boom… and what an asterisk KISS put at the end of this power packed decade. At the end of my Metal day, this is a KISS album from the past, that I would have no problem recommending to someone, who has never listened to this iconic band before. Is this the greatest KISS album ever? Of course it isn’t… yet it isn’t the Asylum album either.

KISS as they appeared on Hot In The Shade:

Gene Simmons – bass & vocals

Paul Stanley – guitar & vocals

Eric Carr – drums

Bruce Kulick – guitar

Track Listing for Hot In The Shade:

Rise To It

Betrayed

Hide Your Heart

Prisoner Of Love

Read My Body

Love’s A Slap In The Face

Forever

Silver Spoon

Cadillac Dreams

King Of Hearts

The Street Giveth And The Street Taketh Away

You Love Me To Hate You

Somewhere Between Heaven And Hell

Little Caesar

Boomerang

* KISS – Hot In The Shade was released on Mercury Records.

LONG LIVE KISS ROCK ‘N ROLL!!!

Stone.

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ALCATRAZZ – “ISLAND IN THE SUN” 1983 VIDEO AND BAND REVISITED!

Posted in 1980's hard rock albums, 1980's hard rock bands, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal guitarists, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's heavy metal songs, 1983 heavy metal music, classic rock music, hard rock bands, hard rock music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal bands, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal history, heavy metal legends, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 1983, heavy metal songs, heavy metal videos, metal odyssey, Music, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 8, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

ALCATRAZZ – released their debut album No Parole From Rock ‘N’ Roll back in 1983. Island In The Sun was the “hit” song that was on MTV’s rotation and received some FM radio airplay as well. Alcatrazz featured Graham Bonnet on vocals and soon to be guitar legend – Yngwie J. Malmsteen. (Steeler released their debut and self titled album that same year, also featuring Yngwie J. Malmsteen and Ron Keel on vocals). Both Alcatrazz and Steeler are bands I liked very much back in the good ol’ ’80’s… still do. I’ve always and forever will be an admirer of Graham Bonnet’s vocals. Graham Bonnet has fronted many bands, my favorites are: Rainbow, Alcatrazz, Michael Schenker Group and Impellitteri. Yngwie J. Malmsteen is simply put… a core favorite of mine since I first heard him play with this Alcatrazz band. There is a whole bunch of Heavy Metal history surrounding Graham Bonnet and Yngwie J. Malmsteen, the number of bands, musicians and albums they have been connected with is amazing. A live version of Island In The Sun is also found on the live Alcatrazz album from 1984 – Live Sentence, with the subtitle No Parole From Rock ‘N’ Roll. Yngwie J. Malmsteen is the guitarist on Live Sentence as well. Eventually the great Steve Vai stepped in to become the guitarist for Alcatrazz, on their 1985 album – Disturbing The Peace.

No Parole From Rock ‘N’ Roll and Live Sentence are just two solid 1980’s Heavy Metal albums to revisit, listen to and enjoy. I really like the song Island In The Sun, the vocal harmony of Graham Bonnet combined with the guitar melodies of Yngwie J. Malmsteen just does it for me. This entire Alcatrazz lineup from 1983 was solid, in my Metal opinion. The video for Island In The Sun brings back some memories for certain… those late nights watching MTV with one eye open, back in the early ’80’s, (when MTV was just one station and really played music videos!) This video for Island In The Sun is goofy… it has that early 1980’s fun and appeal all over it. Nonetheless, the song itself is one terrific and melodic Rocker! Hopefully you will enjoy Island In The Sun as much as I do… you don’t have to like the goofiness of the video though! If anything, there never was a guarantee of an acting career for any of these Alcatrazz musicians… that’s for sure.

* Both No Parole From Rock ‘N’ Roll and Live Sentence were released on Polydor Records.

Crank up Island In The Sun… and have a chuckle or two at this video!

Here is what the 1984 Live Sentence album looks like:

Alcatrazz, as they appeared on both the debut album No Parole From Rock ‘N’ Roll and Live Sentence:

Graham Bonnet – vocals

Yngwie J. Malmsteen – guitar

Gary Shea – bass

Jimmy Waldo – keyboards

Jan Uvena – drums

The Best Of Alcatrazz was released back in October of 1998. This Best Of album also contains the studio version of Island In The Sun as well.

LONG LIVE ALCATRAZZ!

LONG LIVE YNGWIE J. MALMSTEEN!

LONG LIVE GRAHAM BONNET!

Stone.

RUSH – “WORKING MEN” ROCKS LIVE WITH VINTAGE CUTS

Posted in 1970's classic rock bands, 1970's classic rock songs, 1970's classic rock vocalists, 1970's classic rock music, 1970's hard rock, 1970's progressive rock bands, 1970's Rock, 1970's rock bands, 1970's rock music, 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's rock music, 1980's classic rock music, 1980's hard rock bands, 1980's hard rock songs, 1980's progressive rock bands, 1990's hard rock music, 1990's rock music, 1990's hard rock bands, 1990's progressive rock bands, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock bands, classic rock music, classic rock songs, current rock bands, hard rock bands, hard rock music, heavy metal history, heavy metal legends, heavy metal music, metal odyssey, Music, progressive hard rock albums, progressive hard rock music, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 26, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

RUSH is a band that lures me into their progressive Hard Rock world, like an insect flying into a backyard bug lamp. The main difference between me and an insect, (besides my being a human being), is that once I get zapped by the electrifying sound of Rush, I don’t turn crispy and bite the dust. Rush could very well release an album every year and I would buy it. This ultra iconic band’s albums brings back memories and makes new memories for me, on a consistent basis. Metal truth be told, the older I get, the more I have taken a stronger liking to the music of Rush. (I cannot figure this out, therefore, I won’t try to). Rush has released a total of nine live albums over their brilliant career, (counting Working Men), with All The World’s A Stage from 1976 starting this chain. Working Men will never go down as being the greatest live Rush album ever… yet it will not be considered sub standard either. This legendary band can’t compete with themselves, each live album they release, is a signature of where they are as elite musicians. What Rush does best, is give their fans consistency over the decades, while not sacrificing integrity in their musical product. Working Men exemplifies this integrity, with songs that are the most popular from their extensive album catalog.

Geddy Lee, (lead vocals, bass guitar & keyboards), Alex Lifeson, (guitar & vocals) and Neil Peart on drums, possess the uncanny abilities to keep their songs relevant and vibrant. It’s refreshing reality to know that Rush continues onward, entering their fourth decade of creating Progressive Hard Rock, in which they laboriously and consistently helped catapult into a beyond legitimate genre.

All 12 songs are taken from previously released live DVD’s, with the exception of One Little Victory, which is stated as previously unreleased. I come to the conclusion, that this “particular” live version of One Little Victory has never been released, it has appeared on Rush In Rio Live. The studio version of One Little Victory is the opening track for the 2002 Rush album – Vapor Trails. (A tad confusing as to the exactness of the previously unreleased meaning).

Working Men does meld the classics of Rush past, embarking on decades of gems… this live album opens with Limelight, (1981’s Moving Pictures) and Far Cry, (2007’s Snakes & Arrows), is track number six. Having Far Cry in the mix, is a standing true reminder, that Rush is ever the creative trio in recent years. The Snakes & Arrows studio album is an exemplary offering of modern day, Rush Progressive Hard Rock. To acknowledge such a recent Rush song like Far Cry, amidst this vintage lineup of live tracks, was the right move. How can any fan of Rush or such songs as Limelight, Tom Sawyer, Freewill, Working Man or Closer To The Heart resist such a classic compilation of live and Progressive Hard Rock excellence? I can’t resist, no matter how many live go rounds Rush gives these songs.

* The live DVD’s from which these Rush songs were taken from, to compile Working Men: Rush In Rio (2003), R30 (2005) and Snakes & Arrows Live (2008).

The Spirit of Radio, 2112, Dreamline, Subdivisions, and YYZ are the remaining tracks heard on Working Men.

Rush – Working Men was released on November 17, 2009, on Anthem/Atlantic Records.

THE FIRM – what made this Rock Band’s debut album so appealing?

Posted in 1980's hard rock albums, 1980's popular rock bands, 1980's rock albums, 1980's rock music, 1980's hard rock, Album Review, Bad Company, cannibal corpse, classic rock, cool album covers, cover songs, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock drummers, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, Music, Rock, rock & roll, rock and roll, rock music, rock vocalists, vintage hard rock albums, vintage rock albums, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 14, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150Back in 1985, The Firm released their self titled, debut album “The Firm”. I remember being very curious about this band… would the album be heavy? Would this album be a dud? Why is Paul Rodgers not with Bad Company? Is Jimmy Page going to scorch on “The Firm” album? So many questions were going on in my mind back then, about The Firm’s first LP. Well, in my Metal opinion, this album was/still is, one of the more commercially accepted, radio friendly, Rock albums that I will still listen to… even in the middle of my Thrash Metal and Death Metal moods. During one of my frequent thrift store visits this past Winter, I came across this actual album, in close to perfect condition too. The album jacket shows no wear at all, plus the vinyl itself plays without a hitch. Upon finding this album, I instantly grabbed it, there was no second thought about it. (At 50 cents, there was no risk involved, only reward). What makes The Firm and their debut album so appealing? 

After all of these years, the reasons for my liking The Firm have never changed. First of course, is the lead singer Paul Rodgers. Bad Company will forever be a Hard Rock icon for me, especially the Paul Rodgers fronted version of this legendary band. Secondly, how can any Hard Rock and/or Heavy Metal enthusiast not want to get into a band that the revered Jimmy Page plays lead guitar for? Thirdly, “The Firm” as a whole, is not a heavy album and not a dud either. This album falls in between… it is a Rock album that has catchy, memorable tunes. When I really think about it, I do not believe that The Firm ever sounded like any Rock Band before them – save for Bad Company, due to the vocals of Paul Rodgers. However, musically, was there ever a song that sounded like “Radioactive”? Maybe there was, I just am not aware of it. That song drives me crazy, for it is so non-heavy, so corny, so different, yet I really like it, to this very day. I guess The Firm was that Rock Band that dared to be different, in 1985. “Satisfaction Guaranteed” is another song that chugs along, it never seems to get kick started, (and I swear you can almost feel this song wanting to get up and scream), yet again – I really like it.

“You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling” is once again, a song that makes me feel like I have sold out my Metal soul to Pop Music. I actually sing aloud the lyrics, (when I am alone). Just to justify my singing these lyrics… I will sing them in my own, unique, Death Metal voice. Quite honestly, this song would be huge if a Death Metal band covered it. This is rather nit picking, regardless, if you take a look at the front album cover of “The Firm”, why on Metal Earth is the “i” in the word “FiRM” in lower case? This has not troubled me to any point of needing medication, I only look at it and wonder why? I do realize it was a logo design call, yet I always get the urge to want to fix the lower case “i” and make it an upper case “I”

Hey, all kidding aside, I feel The Firm was a darn decent Rock Band, the coolness of Paul Rodgers vocals and the enhanced and unparalleled guitar play of Jimmy Page make this debut album happen for me. I have no problem in recommending the debut album from The Firm, to anyone who is interested. Also note, in my Metal opinion, Tony Franklin on bass and Chris Slade on drums are no slouches either. Anyone who goes on to be the drummer for AC/DC, well, is legend. As I see it, I will turn to this album now and again and enjoy it. Plus, if Hammerfall can do a cover of “My Sharona” by The Knack, heck, then Cannibal Corpse could most certainly do a cover of “Money Can’t Buy” by The Firm.

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Cheap Trick “Silver” – Classic Rock greats captured live!

Posted in 1970's hard rock, 1970's Rock, 1980's rock music, 1980's hard rock, Album Review, classic rock, concerts, cover songs, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, live classic rock albums, live hard rock music, live rock albums, live rock music, Music, Rock, rock & roll, rock and roll, rock music, vintage live hard rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 5, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

6676475Cheap Trick is without question, in my top ten of all time favorite bands. That includes all genres of Rock, Hard Rock and Metal too. This is the one band I so desperately need to see live. I honestly cannot believe I never saw Cheap Trick in concert… after all these years. I feel semi-embarrassed in admitting this. Then again, I would have to be a full time concert goer to actually see every band I dig, there are that many… I am confidently certain I am not alone with that thought. Therefore, what makes for the consolation prize instead of seeing Cheap Trick live, is listening to their double CD “Silver”. (Released June 29, 2004). This double live, Cheap Trick bounty of hits commemorates their 25 plus years as a Rock & Roll original. (Yes, “at Budokan” is a legendary live album from Cheap Trick… I have covered that milestone of an album in an earlier post). “Silver” covers a vast array of Cheap Trick hits, from their deep catalog of albums. This live concert captures Cheap Trick in their Rockin’ spontaneous glory… no over dubbing that I can detect. 

The legendary Slash (of Gun’s N’ Roses, Velvet Revolver fame, of course), is a guest star guitarist for the tune “You’re All Talk”. Slash is so recognizable with his guitar sound, it is a Rockin’ treat to hear him jam with Cheap Trick. Robin Zander announces after the song ends, that Slash broke a guitar string while playing the first few notes… you will hear bits and pieces of Robin Zander talking to the concert crowd throughout “Silver”. This is what makes a live album really come to life, when the lead singer has the charisma and charm to acknowledge his surroundings, just as Robin Zander does here. Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins is a guest star guitarist on the tune “Just Got Back”… you can definitely hear the style of Billy Corgan come through on this Rocker of a song. That is two really cool guest guitarists to appear on “Silver”, it is like an added bonus for Hard Rock fans.

Cheap Trick does an unreal cover of the late/great John Lennon classic – “I’m Losin’ You”. Cheap Trick brings this song to Rock & Roll life, Robin Zander’s vocals were tailor made for this Lennon hit. The Beatles “Day Tripper” is yet another Rock & Roll classic that is covered with true Rock reverence by Cheap Trick, in my opinion, a flawless cover. “The Flame”, “Dream Police”, “Surrender”, “Stop This Game”, “That 70’s Song” and “Voices” are all here on “Silver”… never sounding better, a vintage cornucopia of Rock from Cheap Trick. A total of 31 songs are to be enjoyed here on “Silver”, 31 live, Cheap Trick classics! Bun E. Carlos on drums, Robin Zander on lead vocals, Rick Nielsen on guitars and Tom Petersson on bass are at the top of their Rock game during this live concert. I know that Cheap Trick is on tour again this Summer of 2009, from June 23rd through September 6th… with Def Leppard and Poison. (That is a really cool triple bill). Now, I have seen Def Leppard and Poison live in concert over the years… I just need to see Cheap Trick!!!

Cheap Trick "Silver"

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