Archive for 1980's hard rock music

THE MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP “ASSAULT ATTACK” – 1982 ALBUM REVISITED!

Posted in classic rock, classic rock music, Hard Rock, hard rock bands, hard rock music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal albums, heavy metal bands, heavy metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 30, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

THE MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP – Crazy good. That’s my “flashback review” for the Michael Schenker Group album from 1982, titled – Assualt Attack. Aw, heck, I guess I’ll carry on about just how crazy good this Assualt Attack album is after all. Michael Schenker has released some melodic albums in his career with The Michael Schenker Group and Assault Attack is no exception. 1982 was a time where Heavy Metal was growing into the gigantic and lovable monster that it did eventually become… and still is to this very day.

While NWOBHM Bands like Judas Priest and Iron Maiden were laying down the thick, speed driven, dark and Heavy albums in 1982, with Screaming For Vengeance and The Number Of The Beast, respectively, The Michael Schenker Group was laying down the melodic side of Hard Rock colliding with Heavy Metal sound. And what an amazingly melodic sound at that. What Michael Schenker does with his guitar is he makes it sing… his guitar truly is a second lead vocalist in his band. On Assualt Attack, as with any Michael Schenker album in truth, showcases a lead guitarist who never tried to out-muscle a song with overpowering riffs, questionable leads or over zealous solos. Michael Schenker always makes the song work with his guitar.

Back in 1982, FM radio was MTV, itunes, satellite radio and the internet combined. The only other place on Earth you would have been informed of The Michael Schenker Group would have been through a local fanzine, Circus or Hit Parader magazine. (I’m talking about 1982 America here, so my magazine examples are what they are). The first time I was introduced to this Assault Attack album, it was hearing the two songs Dancer and Desert Song. FM radio was the medium from which I heard these songs initially, the call letters were either WHCN or WCCC out of Hartford, CT, take your pick. The FM nighttime radio show was appropriately called… Metal Shop.

The first two albums from The Michael Schenker Group along with Assault Attack I probably bought within a one year span around ’82… and I thought I had a ton of “catching up” to do back then! Metal be thy name. The constant Rockin’ theme of Assault Attack, is it’s melodic nature screams relevancy while nurturing my memories of younger days. Fans of the current Hard Rock/Melodic Rock movement should easily catch onto this album from The Michael Schenker Group, it’s an album worthy of 2010 rotation.

Back to the exquisitely melodic and still Heavy song… Dancer. The solo by Michael Schenker on Dancer is a listen in Heavy Metal art. This song can be looked upon by some, as slightly commercial for it’s own good, only it’s still a bona fide Hard Rock song from an era that was still escorting Disco out the back door. Graham Bonnet on lead vocals, just a few years removed from being the lead vocalist on Rainbow’s Classic Hard Rock gem, 1979’s Down To Earth album, is his stunning self, giving Dancer and the remaining 8 songs on Assault Attack their unrestrained emotion.

Desert Song finds it’s strengths in many parts, one part lyrics, one part Graham Bonnet on vocals and of course… Michael Schenker’s mouth watering end cap solo. Furthermore, Desert Song is structured with creative diligence, something that many of today’s Hard Rock and Heavy Metal songs don’t normally exhibit. Ulcer is the instrumental where Michael Schenker lets it all air out and rightfully so. While I listen to Ulcer, I can’t help thinking of Joe Satriani… and how this song just might have been a definitive influence on his guitar playing. If there is to be a Heavy Metal guitarist and instrumental to emulate from 1982, Michael Schenker and Ulcer is a fabulous choice.

Rock You To The Ground has a bluesy sound both with it’s music and lyrics. A standout of a Hard Rock track, with Michael Schenker really letting loose with an energetic solo that finishes off this memorable song. It may sound cliche’, yet all the hooks and licks are abundant throughout Assault Attack and they haven’t lost their Hard Rockin’ luster going on three decades! Classic Rock? Hard Rock? Sure… only add Classic Schenker as well.

Broken Promises is a showcase of Michael Schenker’s guitar prowess, as he still leaves plenty of room for Graham Bonnet to leave his vocal imprint as well. This is a 1982 Heavy Metal song that seamlessly tied the knot with a Hard Rock sense of purpose. Broken Promises Rocks along with it’s hardened melody and thumping rhythm section of Chris Glen on bass and Ted McKenna on drums.

Girl From Uptown is a bonus track found on the 2009 remastered version of Assault Attack and it should have been an original song to this album… in my Metal opinion. Once again, a melodic Hard Rockin’ song that features the combination of Graham Bonnet’s vocal harmony and Michael Schenker’s luxurious guitar tone. Girl From Uptown just puts me in a cool mood, then again, this entire album puts me in great Metal spirits… with no let up in sight.

* I used to own Assault Attack on vinyl once. Yup, got rid of it for some insane reason. Anyhow, I’ve since purchased this vintage album on itunes… for under $5 (U.S.). That sure beats the asking price of the import CD version that is currently out there.

* To catch up on ALL things happening with The Michael Schenker Group, including their 30th Anniversary Tour 2010, just click on the link below!

MICHAEL SCHENKER HIMSELF.COM

The Michael Schenker Group, as they appeared on Assault Attack:

Michael Schenker – guitars

Graham Bonnet – lead vocals

Chris Glen – bass

Ted McKenna – drums

Tommy Eyre – keyboards

Track Listing For The Michael Schenker Group – Assault Attack:

Assault Attack

Rock You To The Ground

Dancer

Samurai

Desert Song

Broken Promises

Searching For A Reason

Ulcer

Girl From Uptown (2009 remastered CD bonus track)

LONG LIVE MICHAEL SCHENKER!

LONG LIVE GRAHAM BONNET!

Stone.

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NELSON – A ROCKIN’ CLASS ACT AT THE 2010 M3 ROCK FESTIVAL

Posted in classic rock, classic rock music, concerts, hair metal music, hard rock bands, hard rock music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal bands, heavy metal history, heavy metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock & roll, rock 'n' roll, rock and roll, rock festivals, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 24, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

NELSONRicky Nelson was a 1950’s Rock ‘N’ Roll – Pop sensation that reached #1 in 1957 with his debut album aptly titled – Ricky, on Imperial Records. Up until his untimely death in 1985, Ricky Nelson was without doubt, a successful Rock ‘N’ Roll singer and songwriter. I can remember spinning the 45 rpm of Ricky Nelson’s 1972 hit – Garden Party, when I was just a little kid. This 45 rpm was my late Mother’s and she let me listen to it unconditionally. For me, listening to Ricky Nelson, Buddy Holly and The Everly Brothers records as a little kid came long before I knew of KISS or Cheap Trick.

I’m old enough, (trust me), to remember watching and enjoying the re-runs of – The Adventures Of Ozzie And Harriet, after school. This was a light-hearted and innocent comedy series that starred Ricky Nelson, alongside his Mother, Harriet and his Father, Ozzie. Ricky Nelson was just a young boy when this show hit television in 1952, coming to a series end in 1966. Ricky’s older brother, David, also starred in this same television series. Black & white television ruled my house when I was a kid. Seeing re-runs in black & white made no difference to me then, nor does it make a difference to me now.

Whenever Ricky Nelson was on a television variety show performing back in the ’70’s, I would know. My mother would let it be known to all he was on. (The same thing would happen whenever Tom Jones or Jim Morrison and The Doors were on t.v. too). Memories… even if they are about television stars and early ’70’s flashbacks, the cool thing about it is these guys I’ve mentioned were/are about music and Rock Music history. Music always seemed to bring me and my family together while growing up as a kid, it excited us and made us feel happy.

Fast forward to the 2010 M3 Rock Festival… Ricky Nelson, Ozzie and Harriet would be proud. Ricky Nelson’s twin sons and Ozzie and Harriet’s grandsons known as Nelson, performed at the M3 Rock Festival, in Columbia, Maryland, with the upmost Rockin’ class. And I’m not foolin’ around when I say that.

Matthew and Gunnar Nelson can play Rock and Hard Rock with the best of them. Why do I state this? Nelson played alongside bands such as KIX, WingerCinderella, Vince Neil and the ultra iconic Scorpions at this M3 Rock Festival. Throw in the Metal fact, that Mark Slaughter, (of Slaughter fame), played guitar onstage, right alongside of Nelson at M3 and I’m not talking smack. Mark Slaughter has joined Nelson on their 20th Anniversary Tour. I have always and forever will be enamored by the vocals and music of Mark Slaughter.

Nelson put on one cool, feel-good, Rock ‘N’ Roll set. Matthew and Gunnar played many of their career’s best songs, making each one as melodically contagious as the other to my ears. Actually, Nelson could have easily played for another two hours and I would have gleefully stood in the thick, sticky and humid air to watch them. (Just as long as their set wouldn’t overlap the Scorpions, of course).

As I stood at M3, watching Nelson perform their set, I realized just how important Rock ‘N’ Roll roots truly are. Nelson is a third generation of musicians from their family. This is quite impressive, when you stop to think of how difficult it is to grasp success and hold onto it in the Rock Music world.

I’ve never claimed to be a wizard at taking live concert photos. Nonetheless, here is a photo I took of Mark Slaughter, while performing onstage (second stage) with Nelson at M3 2010. Mark Slaughter is on the far left with the yellow shirt.

Here is another photo (below) of Mark Slaughter onstage to the far left, alongside NelsonMatthew and Gunnar Nelson are seen in the center of stage.

When Nelson released their debut album, After The Rain, back in 1990 on Geffen Records, they were an MTV gold mine of musical talent, looks and personality. Twenty years later, Nelson is still Rockin’ out their songs, albeit with much shorter hair. If success in music is measured in the number of albums you sell or how often you walk the plastic red carpet in Hollywood, then so be it to the corporate money hounds. My idea of success is still being able to play your songs, better than ever, twenty years after the fact, with a blue collar touring ethic that Nelson bestows. Throw in the fact that I witnessed a patriotic and genuine band, that were conscientious of our U.S. troops abroad, making a point to dedicate their music to them on stage… at M3. Kudos to you, Nelson.

Nelson welcomed the fans to join them at the merchandise booth, upon completion of their set, extending an invitation to their fans, to shake hands and sign autographs at the merch booth. Kudos to you, Nelson, once again. Oh, yes… I did take advantage of the meet & greet invitation from Nelson. Not only were Matthew and Gunnar gracious about shaking hands and having their photo taken with me, (and with many, many other fans as well), they also happily signed the liner notes to their “Greatest Hits & Rarities” CD I purchased at the merch table. The photo Scott Coverdale took of me and Nelson below proves that Nelson is permanently in the  Metal Odyssey camp.

Nelson looks like they could go another couple of sets here. I think I look a tad worn at this point, needless to say, I kept on Rockin’ and downin’ the cold brews. Metal be thy name. Yup.

I connected the dots by tracing the Nelson Rock ‘N’ Roll family tree at the beginning of this post for good reason. To hopefully let visitors to Metal Odyssey know, in abbreviated form, a musical background of where Matthew and Gunnar Nelson came from. It’s all relevant, the Nelson family television and music history. These two Rock ‘N’ Roll twins are musicians, that have honed their craft at delivering some very cool Rock and Hard Rock albums over the last twenty years. With their dedication to the music they play, as well as their thankfulness to their fans, while honoring our U.S. troops abroad on stage, only makes me say once again…

A ROCKIN’ CLASS ACT IS NELSON.

* For more info on Nelson, just click this link below:

NELSON KICKS ASS.COM – OFFICIAL WEBSITE!

Without the “Roots of Rock ‘N’ Roll” the M3 Rock Festival would never exist.

Stone.

THE LONDON QUIREBOYS – “A BIT OF WHAT YOU FANCY” FROM 1990 IS A HARD ROCK BLAST!

Posted in 1980's hair metal music, 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal music, 1990's heavy metal bands, 1990's rock bands, 1990's rock music, 1990's hair metal bands, 1990's hard rock albums, 1990's hard rock bands, 1990's heavy metal music, 1990's rock albums, Album Review, cool album covers, hair metal albums, hair metal bands, hair metal music, hard rock album review, hard rock bands, hard rock music, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 1990, heavy metal bands, heavy metal bands from england, heavy metal history, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 1990, metal odyssey, Music, old school hair metal bands, old school hard rock, old school heavy metal, old school heavy metal bands, rock and roll, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 20, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

The London Quireboys – A Bit Of What You Fancy is a reason why I’m psyched I never unloaded my cassettes from years… um, decades past. I slapped this cassette into my home stereo today and I am just as enthused by the Hard Rock blast from The London Quireboys… as I was back in 1990. The London Quireboys put the Hard Rock pedal to the Metal on A Bit Of What You Fancy, no smoke and mirrors to be heard… just great, heavy, Rock and Roll! When I initially bought this cassette back in 1990, I did so only having heard their biggest hit from this album on the FM dial… 7 o’clock. This is a song that my wife, (girlfriend at that time) and I played over and over… and over again back in ’90! Is 7 o’ clock a party song? You bet your Metal life it is! Take a long drive to this entire album and leave your cares behind? Go for it! A Bit Of What You Fancy is like that hidden Hard Rock gem from 1990… only it is not hidden in my Heavy Music collection, no way! A Bit Of What You Fancy carries into my ears all the good times spirit that Rock and Roll is all about – with The London Quireboys delivering it in unabashed Hard Rock style. I should warn those of you, that have never listened to this album before… it is ADDICTIVE!

With my warning aside, I cannot tell people what to buy or listen to… only this time it is different. The London Quireboys debut album is certainly a MUST for fans of Old School Hair Metal, Hard Rock or just damn good Rock and Roll period. I imagine seeing The London Quireboys at a beer soaked, small club… while they play this album in it’s entirety, amidst a crowd of psyched out and Rockin’ fans going nuts all over the place. That’s right. The song – long time comin’ is as heavy and steady of a Hard Rock song that you will ever give to your ears. Am I going off too much on praising this album? Nope, it’s that great. Anytime an album can make me feel so damn good, is an album that shall be praised up and down, inside and out… for the world to read.

The London Quireboys put together an album that utilizes string arrangements, some brass and a keyboard player. Not quite the straight ahead approach of Hair Metal for 1990, was A Bit Of What You Fancy. A standout is take me home, this is absolutely a great song to end this album… so memorable, so much energy, a Hard Rockin’ exclamation point multiplied by 100. The London Quireboys took Hair Metal from the late ’80’s and added some, (a lot), of their very own Hard Rock character to the basic standards. Their style can be blatantly described as a combination of The Black Crowes and Cinderella, fused together with the admirable energy and enthusiasm of a band that obviously enjoyed creating these songs.

Spike on vocals, lends thick credibility to the hardness that this album radiates. Spike’s ultra raspy and gritty vocals makes the songs sound blue collar, an unintended characteristic that just seems to elevate this album and band. Guy Bailey and Guy Griffin on guitars just play man, there are no “steal the show” solos to drown out the total band feel. Chris Johnstone on keyboards, gives this album of songs the Classic Hard Rock texture and feel that I cannot ignore. Nigel Mogg on bass and Ian Wallace on drums provide all the tight and contagiously rhythmic grooves that hold these outstanding songs together. Thank you again, London England, for sowing yet another fabulous Rock and Roll band like The London Quireboys.

The Track Listing For The London Quireboys – A Bit Of What You Fancy:

7 o’clock

man on the loose

whippin’ boy’

sex party

sweet mary ann

i don’t love you anymore

hey you

misled

long time comin’

roses & rings

there she goes again

take me home

A Bit Of What You Fancy was originally released on Capitol Records.

A 20th Anniversary Edition of A Bit Of What You Fancy was released in 2009 on the Jerkin Crocus record label. There are 8 demo’s as bonus tracks found on this 20th Anniversary Edition. (I aim to get myself a copy of it down the Metal road… that’s for sure).


HEAVEN – 1983 HEAVY METAL ALBUM “WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD” REMEMBERED

Posted in 1980's heavy metal albums, 1980's heavy metal cover songs, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, classic heavy metal albums, collecting heavy metal albums, cool album covers, hard to find heavy metal albums, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 1983, heavy metal bands, heavy metal bands from australia, heavy metal cover songs, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 1983, heavy metal on vinyl, metal odyssey, Music, old school heavy metal, old school heavy metal bands, rare heavy metal albums, rock music, spooky album covers, vintage heavy metal albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 19, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Back in the early 1980’s, I would buy just about any Heavy Metal album that had a cool or scary cover. I also would buy a Heavy Metal album just based on the bands name alone… if it was interesting enough. Usually, I was lucky with my choices, although there were those duds that I picked over the decades, (I won’t lie about that). Buying duds happens to any fan of any music genre, I would surmise. Not listening to an album before buying it was, (and still is), a risky Metal proposition, especially if you never heard the respective band before. Step in… Heaven. This Heavy Metal Band was not a dud.

Heaven, a Heavy Metal Band from Australia, released three studio albums during their brief career, (1982-1985), on a major label being RCA. I used to own one of the three Heaven albums – Where Angels Fear To Tread. I bought this album at a Caldor department store, back in 1983. Caldor had one really fine album/records department for a large retail store. Caldor went belly up years ago, it was a shame to see, especially when it was responsible for my having such an array of Heavy Metal albums back in the ’80’s. I bought this Heaven album without ever hearing a single song from it… the bands name being Heaven, along with the front cover logo and artwork was too good to pass up. Plus, the backside of this album had a very large photo of the band, looking real tough, (Heavy Metal tough). In this photo, lead singer Alan Fryer is shown holding a leash with a black panther attached to it. (That is to the best of my Metal memory when describing this back cover photo, if I am in error in any way, please feel free to comment with a correction).

Back in 1983, this was all I needed to see to make a blind Heavy Metal album purchase. I believe the only Heaven song I ever heard on mainstream radio was on WCCC or WHCN, (on the FM dial in expensive Connecticut), the song was Rock School. Quite honestly, I remember really liking this album, yet it was not the Heavy Metal thunder of a Def Leppard, Krokus, Accept or even Helix from that time period. Nonetheless, Heaven was heavy and good enough for me to even be looking back upon, in 2009. Where Angels Fear To Tread was a Heavy Metal album that fit right in during 1983, still Heaven obviously never caught on with the Metal masses… for reasons that I may never know. Let’s face it, I never bought their first album – Twilight of Mischief/In The Beginning, nor did I buy their third album – Knockin’ On Heavens Door, so my Metal loyalty to Heaven was not up to task back in the early ’80’s. What was I supposed to do? There were literally tons of Heavy Metal Bands coming from all sides back then, from Vintage and Classic Rock bands to the birth of the Thrash, Black and Death Metal genres. Heaven just fell victim to choice, when it came to my album purchasing decisions.

As I look back, I really wish I kept Where Angels Fear To Tread, however, it does not appear to be in print on CD. From scoping out the world wide web, it seems that this album is unofficially in print and is referred to as a bootleg version, with five live bonus tracks included. I would be Metal smitten to land a copy of this Heaven album, especially on vinyl once again. Getting ahold of this CD seems to be doable, regardless of any low quality from it being described as a bootleg.

This might sound a tad strange when I state that my favorite song from Where Angels Fear To Tread is the cover song Love Child. Yup, that famous Love Child song originally done by The Supremes. Metal truth be told, Heaven made this song heavy and it Rocked for me back in good ol’ 1983. Aw heck, this entire Heaven album would sound good again for my ears, 26 years after it’s release. It would be interesting to see, with the current Heavy Metal revival ongoing, if Heaven was to resurface in some shape or form. As the old Metal saying goes… you can’t hold onto everything in life, this Heaven album on vinyl is a great example of that, for me anyways.

A quick Metal note: There was another band named Heaven… this particular band goes back to the early 1970’s. From everything I have researched, this Heaven band does not have any association to the Heaven Heavy Metal Band of the early ’80’s. I have never listened to this band, they are categorized as a Rock band and have an album titled: Brass Rock 1, released back in 1971 on Esoteric Records. (See pic of album cover on the left of this paragraph). I found this other Heaven band and Brass Rock 1 album on http://www.fye.com, yup, it was out of stock. This same Brass Rock 1 album is in stock on http://www.bestbuy.com, however, Best Buy categorizes this 1971 Heaven band as “Metal”… go figure. This other Heaven band’s Brass Rock 1 CD is priced at $20.99, U.S. dollars, a bit too pricey for me to take a gamble on. Plus neither f.y.e. or Best Buy offer music samples for this other Heaven Band’s CD, Brass Rock 1.

Here is the front cover for Where Angels Fear To Tread, by the early 1980’s Heavy Metal Band – Heaven. This cover does scream early ’80’s Heavy Metal with it’s color and artwork, the Heaven logo I feel was well done. This cover is nothing too fancy, nor is it uncool, in my Metal opinion.


My Mom Supported Heavy Metal Music

Posted in 1970's heavy metal music, 1980's heavy metal albums, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, classic rock music, family, feel good stories, heavy metal albums, heavy metal music, life stories, Metal, metal odyssey, Music, old school heavy metal, people, personal stories, rock music, scary album covers, shopping for music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 27, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

MetalOdysseyMy unreal great and undeniably loving Mother passed away on July 10, 2009. She just turned seventy years old this past April of 2009. To look at her, you would never know she was seventy, really. My Mom is a true hero and inspiration to me, always will be. She suffered a series of strokes in the Fall of 1990, therefore my Mom was a courageous survivor for nearly twenty years. Not being able to speak and having paralysis on the right side of her body were the two biggest obstacles that my Mom endured for two decades. That did not stop her from enjoying life, seeing her children get married and enjoying four grandchildren. Thanks to my heroic Father who became my Mom’s full time caregiver, many people and family members were given the gift of my Mom’s presence, thoughts and love for much longer than was initially predicted by doctors. Being born from my Mom was a gift and she was a gift to me for forty three years of my life. I now am convinced, that my Mom can speak and walk again up in heaven, where she has been reunited with her parents and without any doubt… my incredible sister too. I am at peace knowing my Mom is healthy again in heaven, no more suffering… my Mom has earned her place with the angels.

KISS Alive ll - small album pictureAlright, as my Mom would probably say right about now… enough with all of the sad stuff, let’s have a good time. I cannot resist reflecting on good times, heck, that is why they are called that in the first place. You see, my Mom was in her own special right… a fan of Heavy Metal. She was without question, one of the biggest advocates for Heavy Metal amongst any other Mom I knew, while growing up as a teenager back in the 1980’s. Her knowledge of the past and current bands back in the late 1970’s and through the 1980’s was admirable. There was a hiccup, however, when I was in sixth grade, in regards to my being allowed to have a KISS album in the house. My Mom took one look at the cover of KISS Alive ll and she said – no way. The blood spewing from the mouth of Gene Simmons was over the top for her. She specifically said that no son of hers would have that in her house. Well, to make a long story short, after she heard the song I was Made For Lovin’ You by KISS, the decision to allow KISS and any of their albums into our house was cleared to go. KISS was in… the world of Heavy Metal had a new fan… my Mom.

The neighborhood in which I grew up in, was a definite attachment to the downtown area of the small city it belonged to. There was a surplus of families living around me for blocks, that struggled to make ends meet. I was the luckiest kid in my neighborhood, having the record and tape collection that I bestowed. This collection of Heavy Metal was earned, I worked many different part time jobs after school and did a bounty of chores around the house and yard. Every penny I made… went to Hard Rock/Heavy Metal albums and tapes. No regrets ever, just a cool life of Heavy Metal enjoyment. My neighborhood buddies and me, well, none of us had a car until our senior year of High School, so making any out of town treks to the “real” record stores was out of the question. Step in my Mom.

Iron Maiden - debut album small picYes, my Mom would go out of her way to drive me and my buddies thirty minutes – out of town, to Strawberries Records and Tapes. These Heavy Metal excursions, (as we called them back then), would happen at the drop of a dime! After school, on the weekends, on days off from school and during the Summer… with my Mom it was no problem. She loved those trips to Strawberries. We sometimes would have four dudes in the back seat, with me up front and my Mom leading the way behind the wheel – those Heavy Metal journeys, (we called them that too), are memories that no money can buy. At least half of my Heavy Metal collection of albums and tapes, were courtesy of what my Mom would pick out on her own back then. We would storm into Strawberries and my Mom would seek out albums like a bobcat seeking out it’s prey. She is responsible for my having every Rainbow album ever made at the time. Iron Maiden too. Honestly, I never would have listened to Scorpions World Wide Live if not for my Mom, she would find and buy some prime albums for me back then.

This last memory I will reveal is one for the Heavy Metal record books. It is true and quite unbelievable. I would have many of my buddies from the neighborhood over to my house, almost on a daily basis. The door was always open to them… per orders from my Mom. Listening to Hard Rock and Heavy Metal albums was our number one priority back then. We played the music loud, as all of us have done and still do… no big deal. One day, while a few of my buddies and me were cranking up the Metal tunes in my bedroom, there was a knock at the door. Crap, I thought. Has my Mom finally had enough of these Heavy Metal hang outs? We all stared at each other not knowing really what to do or say. Again, the knocking at my bedroom door continued. One of us was knowledgeable enough to turn the music down low. I opened the door, hesitantly with a semi-gulp in my throat. Behold it was my Mom standing there with a plate of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies!! She smiled at all of us and said, you can’t go hungry while having so much fun with your music. Needless to say, my buddies were stunned. Unreal memory. A real memory. An unreal Mom that I will love and cherish forever, even if she is far away in heaven.

MetalOdyssey

BADLANDS – 1989 Heavy Metal Debut Album Still Reigns Supreme

Posted in 1980's hard rock albums, 1980's heavy metal albums, 1980's heavy metal hits, 1980's hard rock bands, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's heavy metal songs, 1980's metal music, 1990's heavy metal bands, 1990's hard rock bands, Album Review, classic hard rock music, classic heavy metal, classic heavy metal albums, classic rock, collecting heavy metal albums, cool album covers, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, essential heavy metal songs, guitar legends, hard rock music, hard rock vocalists, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 1989, heavy metal drummers, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 1989, heavy metal vocalists, metal odyssey, Music, old school hard rock, old school heavy metal, rock guitarists, rock music, rock vocalists, vintage heavy metal albums, vintage heavy metal bands, vintage heavy metal songs with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 26, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

BADLANDS "Badlands" large album picBadlands was a Heavy Metal band that I caught onto the instant they released their debut/self titled album – Badlands, (on Atlantic Records), back in 1989. I purchased this Badlands cassette at Strawberries Records & Tapes, located right around the corner from Central Connecticut State University on New Britain Avenue. I was a student at CCSU back in 1989, very much broke to the Metal wind. Therefore, my Heavy Music purchases were not abundant, I chose quality over quantity. With so little funds to buy music as a college student back then, being choosy was a necessity. Badlands with their classic and ultra talented lineup of musicians became a necessity for me. From the very first listen through of this album, (in my case cassette), to say that Badlands left an earthshaking mark on me is the understatement of the decade. The Heavy Metal onslaught of cool and psyched out vibrations, that this Badlands album gave me back in 1989, has once again reintroduced me to that same experience this past weekend.

My best buddy – a.k.a. – best Metal buddy – a.k.a. – Scott, well, he remembered just how much Badlands and their debut album resonated with me back in the day, therefore Scott landed me a CD copy of Badlands. Scott was my roommate at CCSU, my best man at my wedding and if anyone knows my Metal tastes and background… it is him. Thank you Scott, for this Metal gift of Badlands this past Saturday. Getting Badlands on CD in the mail was like experiencing Christmas Day on this cold, dank and rainy day in October. F’n unbelievable surprise.

It is an unreal great feeling to have this Badlands CD finally in my collection. I have never let go of my Badlands cassette since 1989… and I never will. To the best of my Metal research, this Badlands CD is extremely hard to find at retail. Out of print perhaps? Badlands is definitely one of my favorite Heavy Metal albums that I have ever listened to. I only wish this band was able to stay together forever, yet lead vocalist Ray Gillen was called to heaven a little early, on December 1, 1993 at the age of 34. The unreal great guitarist – Jake E. Lee and Ray Gillan on vocals may be the two main musical focal points of Badlands, yet Eric Singer on drums and Greg Chaisson on bass make for an ear bending and jaw dropping rhythm section – stuff of legend. Anyone that knows and enjoys Old School Heavy Metal can certainly identify with Badlands, this band is from that mold. Jake E. Lee proved with Badlands that there was definitely a Heavy Metal life for him away from Ozzy Osbourne.

The eleven songs on Badlands encompass the melodic driven side of Heavy Metal enormously, with the late Ray Gillen’s unique vocals surpassing many of his peers of that time, when it came to harmony and range. I include the late Ray Gillen in with Tony Martin, Jeff Scott Soto, Gary Barden, Jorn Lande and Joe Lynn Turner when it comes to lead vocals status in Old School Heavy Metal. He belongs with this select group of singers. (I definitely left out some names here, yet I think my point is made). If not for his passing away at age 34, I am convinced Ray Gillen would have been a top tier Heavy Metal and/or Hard Rock vocalist to this very day. With so many new vocalists coming out of the woodwork in all of the Metal genres since the 1990’s, too many of them sound like each other or have little regard for originality. This is why I can never tire from the late Ray Gillen’s vocal talent.

My favorite song on Badlands is Dreams In The Dark, I played it six times over, very loud the other night and it served me right. Yes, I acted very silly jumping around in my basement like a psyched out kid, while this song and the rest of Badlands cranked. As the ultra great Blackie Lawless would say… I don’t need no doctor. All I need is to delve back into the Metal world of Old School Heavy Metal, (on a very consistent basis), turn on some Badlands and let the bull crap of the world around me, wallow in it’s own decrepit stank. I don’t look back upon Badlands as a supergroup, instead I look upon them as a fabulously talented Heavy Metal band that was too short lived. Long live the legacy of Badlands – their Heavy Metal still reigns supreme for me.

Track List For Badlands:

High Wire

Dreams in the Dark

Jade’s Song

Winter’s Call

Dancing on the Edge

Streets Cry Freedom

Hard Driver

Rumblin’ Train

Devil’s Stomp

Seasons

Ball & Chain – (this song is not on the vinyl record version of Badlands)

BADLANDS "Badlands" large album pic

HELIX – “Rock You” is my Heavy Metal Song for this weekend

Posted in 1980's hair metal albums, 1980's hair metal bands, 1980's hard rock albums, 1980's heavy metal albums, 1980's heavy metal hits, 1980's classic rock, 1980's classic rock music, 1980's hair metal music, 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's heavy metal songs, classic heavy metal, classic rock music, cool album covers, essential heavy metal songs, hair metal music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 1984, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 1984, heavy metal on vinyl, Music, old school hair metal bands, old school heavy metal, vintage heavy metal albums, vintage heavy metal bands with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 13, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Helix "Walkin' The Razors Edge" small picOn July 7th, 1984, Helix released Walkin’ the Razor’s Edge, (their 4th album/on Capitol Records). I was very much the fan of Helix back then… still am. You see, Helix is one of those Heavy Metal Bands that always liked to put the (gasp) fun into Heavy Metal Music. I used to own this album… on vinyl too. This Helix album is another one I would like to find again on vinyl, (yup, I got rid of this album for some insane reason years ago), only I want an original pressing from 1984 and at a thrift store price too. I will find this album again on one of my Metal hunts… I can feel it. For now, I am Metal psyched to at least own a digital copy of the single Rock You from Walkin’ the Razor’s Edge. This is one cool and fun – Heavy Metal song from 1984. Rock You started playing in my head earlier today, therefore, I cranked up this song on my stereo system and it served me right. This is a tried and true, Classic Heavy Metal Anthem that still works for me. Rock You is my Heavy Metal song for this weekend of September 12/13 of ’09. I have compiled the lyrics below, just to prove my point as to why this song is fun. LONG LIVE HELIX and… ROCK YOU!

ROCK YOU:

(chorus -1)

Give me an R-O-C-K 
Whatcha got (ROCK) 
And whatcha gonna do (ROCK YOU) 
Gimme an R-O-C-K 
Whatcha got (ROCK) 
And whatcha gonna do (ROCK YOU) 
Hot as a pistol 
Loaded like a gun 
Waiting for some action 
Gotta have my fun 
Don’t just sit there 
C’mon get up and move 
If you want to 
Tell ya’ what we’re gonna do 

(chorus-2) 

Rock you (ROCK YOU) 
Rock You (ROCK YOU) 
I’ve been waiting for so long 
For the outcome 
Gotta play it strong 
So just don’t sit there 
C’mon get up and move 
If you want to 
Tell ya’ what we’re gonna do 
(chorus-2) 
(chorus-1) 
(solo) 
Rock you 
Don’t just sit there 
C’mon get up and move 
If you want to 
Tell ya’ what we’re gonna do 
(chorus-2-out)

To the best of my Metal research, here is the current 2009 lineup of Helix:

Jim Lawson on Guitar
Brian Vollmer on Vocals
Paul Fonseca on Bass
Rick VanDyk on Guitar
Brent Niemi on Drums

Helix "Walkin' the Razor's Edge" large pic

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