Archive for current hard rock albums

BRUCE KULICK “BK3” – A MENAGERIE OF ROCK, HARD ROCK & HEAVY METAL

Posted in 1980's heavy metal guitarists, 1980's heavy metal music, 1990's heavy metal guitarists, 2010 hard rock albums, 2010 heavy metal albums, current hard rock albums, current heavy metal albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock music, hard rock music 2010, hard rock vocalists, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal history, heavy metal legends, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2010, heavy metal solo albums, heavy metal solo artists, heavy metal solo vocalists, heavy metal vocalists, metal odyssey, Music, new heavy metal music, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 5, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

BRUCE KULICK – BK3 was released on February 2, 2010. I bought BK3 on it’s release date at Walmart for $10… not a shabby price at all, especially since this is an extremely likable album of eleven songs. Bruce Kulick has presented to the world, a menagerie of Rock, Hard Rock and Heavy Metal songs. No, there are no Folk songs on BK3, just solid musicianship all, with Bruce Kulick as the main attraction and in the guitar spotlight. Bruce plays bass guitar on five of the eleven songs as well. I have always enjoyed the guitar tone of Bruce Kulick, he doesn’t disappoint me again with his skills and sound on BK3. As the lead KISS guitarist on their studio albums from 1985 to 1992 aside, there has been so much more to an impressive and storied career behind Bruce Kulick and his guitar. BK3 is not about looking back on the past, it’s better described as building on the future while cementing a legitimate and thoroughly enjoyable third solo album.

Any hints of trying to conjure up the Hair Metal version of 1980’s KISS are not found in the music of BK3. I applaud Bruce Kulick for being creative on this album, while reaching out to some of his vocal friends for melodic and harmonious diversity. Other musical guests abound on BK3, each contributing their own signature to this album of spontaneity. A Guitar legend in his very own right, Steve Lukather, jams his way through the instrumental – Between The Lines. The combination of Bruce Kulick and Steve Lukather on one song is a Hard Rockin’ treat to my ears.

I’m The Animal exhibits the vocal talent of Edguy’s Tobias Sammet and drumming/KISS legend – Eric Singer, a Heavy Metal all-star cast. Bruce Kulick fires away delectable licks on I’m The Animal, making this song an instant favorite of mine. Final Mile is an entwining glow of Rock meets Hard Rock – up tempo ballad. Final Mile is also a convincing nod to the never aging Classic Rock genre. To compare Bruce Kulick vocally to someone else, without this sounding too much of a Metal stretch, my pick would be none other than Ace Frehley. Yes, both are unique vocalists, still, making a comparison is all this really is.

I’ll Survive features Bruce Kulick on vocals as well, (he sings lead vocals on five songs in all), a dramatic Rock song, lyrically tapping into the human spirit, while reflecting on being thankful for being alive and having one’s life spared from the grasp of uncertain death. Hand Of The King is a Heavy Metal surprise that features Nick Simmons on lead vocals. (In my Metal opinion, Nick does sound a bunch like his dad Gene Simmons). If comparisons to his dad Gene Simmons, proves to be of any detriment to Nick Simmons and his music career… well then, Metal be damned for his vocals sound terrific to me. Metal kudos to you, Nick.

No Friend Of Mine is without question, another favorite song on BK3 for me. John Corabi is the lead vocalist on this fast paced and semi-ballad. No Friend Of Mine has enough Hard Rock edges, encircling its Heavy Metal core, to tempt me into hitting the repeat button for this song multiple times. John Corabi vocally sounds excellent, a real standout on BK3, in my Metal opinion, once again. Doug Fieger is yet another fantastic surprise to hear on Dirty Girl, this song captures the essence of Rock relevancy through the decades, a good time, Hard Rockin’ song that reminds me of the Summer months… (yes, it really does).

KISS icon – Gene Simmons impresses with lending his lead vocals on Ain’t Gonna Die… yes, this song illuminates Heavy Metal… Old School too. Life ends BK3 in straight forward Rock style, with Bruce Kulick giving his lyrics added sincerity through his own vocals. To sum up the heartening reality of this songs lyrics, two lines say it best: Love is a gift in life, Be careful of what you choose. Bruce Kulick definitely has a mellow side, then again, I guess I do too… Bruce Kulick has reminded me of that.

* Catch up on more Bruce Kulick news and info by clicking here: BRUCE KULICK – Official Website

* BK3 was released on Twenty 4 Records/Rocket Science.

Track Listing For BK3:

Fate

Ain’t Gonna Die

No Friend Of Mine

Hand Of The King

I’ll Survive

Dirty Girl

Final Mile

I’m The Animal

And I Know

Between The Lines

Life


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Seether – “Finding Beauty In Negative Spaces” is awe inspiring Hard Rock

Posted in Album Review, cool album covers, current hard rock albums, current hard rock music, current hard rock songs, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock albums 2007, hard rock drummers, hard rock guitarists, hard rock music 2007, hard rock music this decade, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, Music, Rock, rock album reviews, rock music, rock music vocals, rock vocalists, seether rock band, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 3, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150Seether is a Hard Rock band that does not need any plastic Hollywood music awards to be told they are damn great. The fans know. The music of Seether tells the whole story… of just how sensational Hard Rock songs are written. “Finding Beauty In Negative Spaces” is an album that should be a required musical manual for any up and coming Hard Rock band. Seether has proven to me, that lyrics are very, very, important in Heavy Music. Shaun Morgan, in my Metal opinion, encompasses many musical gifts… his vocals, guitar skills and the song writing that leaves me in awe. Lyrically, this is one of the best albums I have ever listened to in my lifetime. Couple these tremendously inspiring lyrics with Hard Rock music that is maximized by it’s hardness and mesmerizing grooves, well, you have yourself an instant classic. Shaun Morgan for me, is a vocalist that I listen to so intently, that the music at times becomes a backdrop. (This is by no means, an insult, it is just that Shaun Morgan’s vocals are so searing, they take hold of my attention and leave me zoned out on his voice and lyrics). I have to listen to Seether and say to myself, o.k., I am going to pay more attention to the music this time around, when I do it is like a double dose of Hard Rock music and Hard Rock vocal exhilaration. 

“Rise Above This” is a song that has hit me in such a right way. I lost my sister four years ago, man do I miss her. Since this song came into my life, well, It just seems to say exactly how I feel about missing her. My sister left to go to heaven at age 43, there was way too much more that I wanted to do with her and say to her. I never had a chance to say goodbye to her, this is my song that encourages me it is alright. I am ecstatic that there is a band like Seether and a vocalist/lyricist like Shaun Morgan that can combine Hard Rock with real lyrics recognizing true humanity. “No Jesus Christ” is probably the heaviest song on this album, it basically calls a deceitful person out, a song that just about anyone who is not a backstabbing, evil entity, can relate to. “Fake It” is the single greatest song to commemorate all of the scum bag, plastic people of this world, who cannot find their own identity and try their best to be nothing but despicable chameleons. I raise my fist and say hooray to Seether and Shaun Morgan for knowing that crappy people make great subject matter for Hard Rock songs! “Six Gun Quota” is a song about self inflicted destruction – of both body and soul. This song rocks, despite the honest to goodness gray subject matter.

The popularity and record sales of Seether are for a measurable reason. This band connects to me, it is only logical Seether connects to an unknown many others. Fans of Seether already know this, yet I need to tell new, prospective fans, that “Finding Beauty In Negative Spaces” is not your run of the mill Hard Rock album written with the premise to just party hard and pick up chicks. The music found here is of substance and quality Hard Rock, it is also story telling that mixes in a menagerie of human emotions and trials. 

Seether as they appear on “Finding Beauty In Negative Spaces”: Shaun Morgan on guitar & lead vocals, Dale Stewart on bass guitar & backing vocals and John Humphrey on drums.

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Great White “Rising” rises to the top with A+ Hard Rock

Posted in 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's metal music, 1990's heavy metal music, Album Review, cool album covers, current hard rock albums, current hard rock songs, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, essential hard rock albums, Great White, great white 2009, Hair Metal, hair metal music, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock albums 2009, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal this decade, heavy metal vocalists, independent record labels, Metal, Music, Rock, rock music, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 8, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Great White “Rising” for me, is a retrospective listen, and it is not Heavy Metal. This is some inspiring, well written and high quality – Hard Rock. I can even go as far to say that “Rising” can be defined as a Rock album. You are not going to hear the 1980’s flamboyant, grandiose, guitar riff – infused Heavy Metal tunes here. No insanely – Metal driven solos either, some tastefully crafted solo’s do appear however, (“Danger Zone”), so do not despair. What I do hear on “Rising”, is a band that has clearly found themselves creating music straight from the heart. I am not trying to sound sappy here, sappy is not allowed on Metal Odyssey. What I am trying to convey is that Great White has proven to us Metalheads years ago, that they can play heavy and light up an Arena or two. I am convinced, after listening to “Rising”, that Great White is just as enthusiastic and talented as ever. Great White are real musicians… they do not need to carbon copy their past albums onto a 2009 release. “Rising” has some really addicting Old School Hard Rock flavor throughout.

Jack Russell on lead and background vocals has close to no resemblance of the Hair Metal heyday of his 1980’s voice. Forget the comparisons anymore to the legendary Robert Plant! (It started to get very old, even though Great White is what I consider the greatest Led Zeppelin cover band in the world). It is refreshing to hear Jack Russell not sound like a 1980’s retread. His vocals are absolutely superb on this album. “Danger Zone” and “Down On The Level” are two of the more hardest rockers on “Rising”, giving way to some of Jack Russell’s vocal past. “My Sanctuary” exemplifies what the Hard Rock ballads sound like on this album… free flowing with plenty of catchy grooves. “Situation” and “Shine” are songs that are similar, being heavy enough that they are very far removed from being mellow meltdowns. “All Or Nothin” is laden with enough grooves, hooks and foot stomping moments to make this my favorite track. Loveless” is a real retrospective visit to late ’70’s early ’80’s Hard Rock sound- only it is a really good visit at that. Great White in my Metal opinion, has found the perfect balance of melody and harmonious vocals with just enough heavy guitar and rhythm section to make “Rising” a legitimate Hard Rock keeper.

I cannot possibly compare Great White of the ’80’s to Great White of 2009. I dig the music from both Great White eras. I find it cool when a band, especially one that is renowned for Heavy Metal, digs a little deeper into their musical souls and delivers a knock out of an album, filled with tunes you were not really expecting. Great White “Rising” should appeal to a very vast audience of genres… Hard Rock, Rock and Heavy/Hair Metal fans should find what they like on this album, I know I have. With all of my mentioning of retrospective on this review of “Rising”, I am steadfast against the labeling of music as being dated. Just because music brings back memories of other decades or sounds like music from the past, does not make it uncool. Look at how many CD’s and albums that the immortal Elvis and legendary Beatles sell on a weekly basis… if dated music does exist, then I guess dated music is in. Great White of 2009 is happening for me. I have spoken my Metal point.

“Rising” was released on April 21, 2009, on Shrapnel Records. And now, a Metal Odyssey roll call of the members of Great White, as they appear on “Rising”: Jack Russell – lead and background vocals, Mark Kendall – guitar and background vocals, Audie Desbrow – drums, Michael Lardie – guitar, keyboards, mandolin, sitar, harmonica, percussion and background vocals, Scott Snyder – bass and background vocals.

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Michael Schenker & Gary Barden rock together again on “In The Midst Of Beauty”

Posted in 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal music, Album Review, classic rock, current hard rock albums, current hard rock songs, current heavy metal music, Guitar, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, Metal Reviews, Music, Rock, rock music, rock music vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 18, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

I always have been enamored by the guitar brilliance of Michael Schenker. I have always been a big fan of the Hard Rock/Heavy Metal vocals of Gary Barden. These two musicians combined, made for one very cool and memorable debut album by The Michael Schenker Group, which was self titled. My favorite album by this duo is the second Michael Schenker Group album, titled “MSG”. Depending on the song or album you listen to from the Michael Schenker Group catalog, this band can be defined as Rock, Hard Rock or Heavy Metal. Diversity has been the mainstay in Michael Schenker’s music, in my Metal opinion. A tried and true crossover of Heavy Music styles is what MSG has accomplished over the decades. Michael Schenker has had one incredible Hard Rock/Metal career, being an original member of the Scorpions and as a member of the infamous UFO.

Michael Schenker has had different lead vocalists over the years, again, my nod goes to the combo of Michael Schenker and Gary Barden. I did not intend to get too long winded, on the background history of The Michael Schenker Group, just a brief introduction is necessary for new fans that might want to check out the past music of MSG. Schenker – Barden “In The Midst Of Beauty” was released on May 13, 2008, with both Michael Schenker and Gary Barden rockin’ out together again. I am very pleased with this album, the vocals of Barden are still solid, he was never a flamboyant or in your face – Arena Rock vocalist to begin with. Barden for me, has always been a cool and deliberate Heavy Rock vocalist who exhibits real emotion in his vocals, while pronouncing the lyrics of his songs – always making the lyrical message as important as the music itself. In my Metal opinion, Gary Barden is as true a Heavy Rock vocalist today as he was in 1980. I cannot say enough about the guitar wizardry of Michael Schenker, to me he plays his very best on “In The Midst Of Beauty”.

All 12 songs are memorable for me on this album, with my favorite track being “Ride On My Way”. This tune is very melodic and it Rocks. I knew when I bought this CD, that I was not going to hear the resurrection of the 1980’s Schenker & Barden Heavy Metal attack. As years pass, all of our great and legendary Metal musicians change a tad or two. Does Gary Barden sound older? How about Michael Schenker? Give me a break, if anything else, there is a new found level of confident Metal that I hear on “In The Midst Of Beauty”. Do not be fooled, for Michael Schenker still brings the heavy on his guitar solos and leads. These two Heavy Metal legends can still Rock their hearts out, I only wish I could sing or play guitar this darn great at my age! “In The Midst Of Beauty” is a fantastic Hard Rock/old school Heavy Metal album that defines what Schenker and Barden are all about – both accomplished musicians who have nothing to prove to anyone – while still showing the entire Rock world what real song writing is all about.

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Duff McKagan’s Loaded is loaded with Punk & Hard Rock

Posted in Album Review, Century Media, century media records, current hard rock songs, current heavy metal music, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, Metal Reviews, new hard rock album, new heavy metal album, new punk rock album, Punk rock, Rock, rock music, rock music vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 7, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

9252961Duff McKagan, you know, the very famous and former bass player for the legendary Guns N’ Roses and current bass wizard for Velvet Revolver? Yeah, that guy. Well, let me tell you, Duff McKagan has his brand new solo, (if you will), album out right now and it is in my Metal opinion, sensational. Really, these tunes that Duff McKagan provides with Loaded are just that – loaded. Loaded with quality Hard Rock driven tunes. These songs have catchy hooks and an almost unmistakable Punk Rock vibe happening throughout the entire album. Loaded is groove laden and if I am not mistaken, not over-produced! I can honestly say, that I hear a bit of overall polish missing and I love that!!

Duff McKagan handles the lead vocal duties on every song and plays guitar on this album. I will say this without hesitation, Duff McKagan can sing. His vocals are tailored made for Hard Rock, with a whole bunch of Punk Rock attitude to go along with them. Why do I keep bringing up the comparisons with Punk Rock? Well, that is what I honestly hear, Duff Mckagan’s Loaded is all about Hard Rock and Punk Rock meeting each other in the middle. The only song that gets the least of my attention on this album is “Mother’s Day” – the lyrics are depressing. I always stray away from the sad ballads/sad lyrics from any band. However, despite the lyrics on this song, musically it is very listenable.

Once you listen to the first two tracks – “Sick” and “Sleaze Factory”, anyone who appreciates Hard Rock and Punk Rock will realize the fusion of the two are here with Loaded – these two songs set the table for this album. Duff McKagan has proved to me, that he is an extremely well rounded Rock musician, his talents resonate loud and clear on this album. Loaded as a band and Sick the album, are sure fire to achieve commercial and mainstream acceptance and success, I can appreciate that. Loaded as a band deserves all the applause they can muster. When you have the instant and legendary credibility of Duff McKagan carrying the music, broad acceptance is unavoidable, forget being labeled underground. Loaded and this album has become an instant favorite for me, I highly recommend this album to all heavy music fans worldwide. Now, to spotlight the fine musicians that make up Loaded: Duff McKagan on vocals & guitars, Geoff Reading on drums & vocals, Jeff Rouse on bass, vocals and translucent and Mike Squires on guitars and vocals.

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