Archive for guitar legends

Ronnie Montrose – Rest In Peace

Posted in classic rock, guitarists, Hard Rock, heavy metal news, Music, rock guitarists, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , on March 5, 2012 by Metal Odyssey

Ronnie Montrose – Legendary guitarist and Hard Rock & Heavy Metal pioneer Ronnie Montrose passed away on Saturday, March 3rd, 2012, at the age of 64. From numerous credible reports, it has been stated that Ronnie Montrose was battling prostate cancer. Metal Odyssey expresses condolences to the family, friends and fans of Ronnie Montrose.

The A-list of musicians that Ronnie Montrose had recorded and played with throughout his legendary career is extensive, (Boz Skaggs, Van Morrison, The Edgar Winter Group) to name a few. Ronnie Montrose had of course, his very own legendary Hard Rock band Montrose, a band in which Sammy Hagar debuted in, fronted and received his career break from. Ronnie Montrose also enjoyed much success with the Rock/Hard Rock/AOR band Gamma.

The Rock N’ Roll of Ronnie Montrose shall live on forever. Rest in peace, Ronnie Montrose.

(Top album photo: Montrose – debut/ST, Warner Bros. from 1973)

Stone.

TONY IOMMI – Happy Birthday From Metal Odyssey!

Posted in celebrity birthdays, classic rock, guitar legends, guitarists, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, heavy metal news, metal music, Music, rock music, rock music birthdays, rock music news with tags , , , , , , on February 19, 2012 by Metal Odyssey

Back on February 19th, 1948, Tony Iommi was born. Tony Iommi turns a young 64 today. Guitar Legend. Founding member of Black Sabbath. Metal Legend. What more can be said about what Tony Iommi has accomplished for the evolution of Heavy Metal? One more thing can be said, however:

HAPPY

BIRTHDAY

TONY IOMMI!

LONG LIVE TONY IOMMI.

Stone.

GARY MOORE – ‘Live At Montreux 2010’ A Celebrative Listen Of A Late, Great Guitar Legend

Posted in classic rock, concerts, Hard Rock, hard rock albums, Heavy Metal, heavy metal news, rock festivals, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , on February 16, 2012 by Metal Odyssey

GARY MOORELive At Montreaux 2010 was released back on September 20th, 2011, via Eagle Records. The legendary Gary Moore had performed at the 44th Montreux Jazz Festival back in 2010. The Festival dates were July 2nd through July 17th of that year. This world-famous festival also showcased the following diverse lineup of bands in 2010: Simply Red, Phil Collins, Billy Idol, Norah Jones, Roxy Music, Mark Knopfler, Tori Amos, Herbie Hancock, Joe Bonamassa and Missy Elliott (to name a several few).

Seven months to the day, after this Montreux performance, Gary Moore passed away from a heart attack. February 6th, 2011 was a very sad day for music indeed. I remember my first time listening to a Gary Moore album in its entirety and it was 1984’s Victims Of The Future. When I first saw Gary Moore in the music video for Shapes Of Things, I was hooked. I thought to myself so long ago… this dude is not acting, this dude is real.

As the Gary Moore discography of Blues piled-up, I regretfully didn’t keep up. Over the years, my habitual leanings towards the “heavy stuff” and being broke time and again seemed to detour my buying habits. It’s okay though, at least I have a Gary Moore want list that I can enjoy filling and exploring still. Plus I’ve held onto Still Got The Blues on cassette after all these years!

Recently, I came across this live Gary Moore CD at Best Buy. I knew I wasn’t leaving the store without it. The whole reality of Gary Moore passing away hit me as well once again, as I held onto this CD. I wasn’t going to be a turd and pass over fine wine for a beer on this shopping trip for music. Not this time. Honestly, this CD surprised the daylights out of me for the track listing screamed of the Hard Rock side of Gary Moore’s late 80’s career. I felt like time froze as I approached the check-out at Best Buy. Really.

As I drove home with this newly purchased Gary Moore CD playing, it felt so right. It also felt so grand to hear Gary Moore playing his harder stuff live too. Odd as it sounds, yet, Gary Moore was alive once again through his music and I just became lost in the midst of these live songs. Gary Moore played three brand new songs at this Montreux Festival and they are included on this album. The new songs are: Days Of Heroes, Where Are You Now and Oh Wild One.

All three new songs that Gary Moore and his band performed are sensational to say the least. Days Of Heroes is vintage Hard Rockin’ Gary Moore. Where Are You Now can be considered a ballad due to its tempo, still, Gary Moore lays his guitar parts and solo down with an exquisite touch, giving this song a Rockin’ edge that is difficult to shake from my brain. The Wild Frontier and After The War days are summoned up by Gary Moore in dazzling fashion, with Oh Wild One. Man, is this a melodic Hard Rock song that became instantly imbedded in my head! Whoa.

The entire band that Gary Moore assembled for this 2010 tour and Montreux performance are seasoned pros (see band lineup below). Honestly, they played damn tight together during this performance and its damn right refreshing to hear such a level of quality from them. Gary Moore just downright shines vocally and (of course) on guitar throughout each song. This live production never comes across as being “tinkered with”, it’s as live as it gets to my senses.

There are guitar legends and then there are those guitar legends that play with such emotion, that their guitar tones come across as vocals to me. Gary Moore was/will forever remain one of those guitar legends for my senses. Just listen to Blood Of Emeralds and So Far Away/Empty Rooms and hopefully you’ll understand what I mean.  A mammoth of a song is Blood Of Emeralds, so fully enriched with Gary Moore’s guitar playing and it simply moves me.

Please pardon my lengthy review for this live gem, only this Gary Moore album I could write about for another 50,000 words or so. However, I will come to a close by saying this is a live Gary Moore album that I’ll cherish for the rest of my life. I never had an opportunity to see Gary Moore live so this is as close as it gets. It’s amazing how music can change your mood for the better. Gary Moore Live At Montreux 2010 just elevates my spirits and reminds me once again, that what I was hearing way back in 1984 was real after all… and that was the guitar of Gary Moore.

The Band:

Gary Moore – vocals, guitar

Neil Carter – keyboards, vocals, guitar

Jon Noyce – bass

Darrin Mooney – drums

Gary Moore Live At Montreaux 2010 – Track Listing:

Over The Hills And Far Away

Military Man

Days Of Heroes

Where Are You Now

So Far Away/Empty Rooms

Oh Wild One

Blood Of Emeralds

Out In The Fields

Walking By Myself

Johnny Boy

Parisienne Walkways

Rest In Peace, Gary Moore. 

1952 -2011

Stone.

Brian May – Happy Birthday From Metal Odyssey!

Posted in celebrity birthdays, classic rock, classic rock guitarists, Hard Rock, hard rock guitarists, Heavy Metal, metal odyssey, Music, rock guitarists, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , on July 19, 2011 by Metal Odyssey

BRIAN MAY – On July 19th, 1947, Brian May was born. Brian May turns 64 years young today! Happy Birthday Brian May! Being the legendary guitarist and songwriter for the also legendary Queen, it is difficult to not have Brian’s name mentioned in any discussion about all-time greatest guitarists. His signature guitar sound is so recognizable and downright classic.

While I was growing up as a young lad, I can recall hearing Queen on the radio. I remember thinking to myself, that Queen’s songs moved me in such a psyched-out way. Realistically, all those same Queen songs I heard so long ago, when I didn’t even own a legitimate stereo, still psyche me out today. Timeless Rock written and played by timeless musicians, such as Brian May… never fades away.

Pictured at top of post: Brian May – Back To The Light, (UK album cover)/Released in 1992 on Parlophone Records (UK) and 1993 on Hollywood Records (U.S.)

LONG LIVE BRIAN MAY.

Stone.

Leslie West and Mountain – Roots of Heavy Music, Legends of Rock!

Posted in classic rock, classic rock albums, guitar legends, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 24, 2011 by Metal Odyssey

LESLIE WEST and MOUNTAIN – The news this week about Leslie West having to undergo a leg amputation is absolutely sad to hear. Complications from diabetes has caused this unfortunate trial for Leslie. I wish Leslie West a victorious recovery and shall keep him and his family in my prayers. I’m very happy to hear he is recovering. I read excerpts of Leslie’s call-in to Howard Stern’s satellite radio show (on Wednesday, June 22nd) where he explained the scary chain of events.

Leslie West is both a pioneer and legend of Rock music. Leslie pioneered heavy guitar playing, I shudder to think where Hard Rock and Heavy Metal would be without his signature guitar and vocal styles. I’m just an Old Schooler when it comes to Rock and Roll’s roots. I’ll continue to thank the guys and gals of Rock and Roll’s yesteryear for founding and shaping the music I so much love. Thank you Leslie West.

Throughout my life, I’ve read countless interviews of Rock musicians and Leslie’s name consistently turns up when the topic of “influence” is brought up. The same has held true when I’ve done interviews for either Hard Rock Hideout or Metal Odyssey, his influence is brought up consistently. Leslie West is not just another musician in Rock history, Leslie West is a key figure who helped build Hard Rock and Heavy Metal to where it is in 2011.

This past week I went digging around to see what Mountain albums I’ve reviewed and there are a couple. (See below). Check out these two Mountain albums (if you haven’t already), they quite simply… ROCK.

(MountainMasters Of War – 2007/Big Rack Records)

On April 28, 2010, I wrote about Masters Of War, a cover song album that pays tribute to Bob Dylan’s classics. Click the big header link below to check it out:

MOUNTAIN – Masters Of War: A Cover Song Album Of Bob Dylan Classics

(MountainThe Best Of Mountain Live – 2006/St. Clair)

On January 30th, 2010, I wrote about The Best Of Mountain Live. This is a really cool and live Mountain CD to listen to. You can read all about it by clicking the big header link below:

MOUNTAIN – The Best Of Live: A Listen In Hard Rock And Heavy Metal Roots

* LESLIE WEST, CORKY LAING and MOUNTAIN SHOULD BE INDUCTED INTO THE ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME… METAL BE THY NAME.

* For more info on MOUNTAIN, click on the link below:

MOUNTAIN – Official Web-Site

LONG LIVE LESLIE WEST.

LONG LIVE MOUNTAIN.

Stone.

Warren Haynes – Man In Motion: Five Reasons To Buy This Album

Posted in classic rock, classic rock music, guitarists, Hard Rock, metal odyssey, Music, rock and roll, rock music, rock music news, southern rock with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 19, 2011 by Metal Odyssey

Warren Haynes – The second studio album from legendary guitarist and vocalist Warren Haynes was released on May 10th, 2011, on Stax Records. Rock, Southern Rock and the Blues have and always will be in the Rockin’ arsenal of Warren’s skillful guitar playing. Best known for his membership with The Allman Brothers Band and Gov’t Mule, Warren has a Rock and Roll resume that goes much deeper than that. Playing guitar at a young age for Country legend David Allan Coe and even appearing live, onstage, with the Dave Matthews Band are a part of this highly respected guitarist’s musical history.

I want to share with you, five reasons why you should buy this new Warren Haynes album, here they are:

1. It’s all about the guitar. Any guitar aficionado will salivate at the pureness that Warren Haynes so eloquently expresses with his playing. Longtime fans of Warren Haynes surely know what I mean.

2. Diversity. Warren Haynes plays his patented Southern Rock tones, still he turns over some bluesy and funky licks that makes Man In Motion a case study in Rock appreciation.

3. Vocal coolness. When I listen to Warren Haynes sing, it’s listening to a dude that believes in his lyrics and the song. Storytelling and singing straight from the heart are two attributes of Warren that too many young vocalists nowadays don’t grasp… or even know exists.

4. Classic Rock never surrenders. The steady vibe of Classic Rock never subsides throughout Man In Motion. The organ, clavinet and tenor saxophone adds the old school mystique, making me drift back to those less stressful and technologically less invasive days of yesteryear. Songwriting never sounded so comfortably gilded.

5. “The three C’s”. Completeness, Competency and Creativity. When I can listen to an entire album that is richly guitar based and still be lured into the dynamics of the other instruments and vocals equally, that’s completeness. The competency is Warren Haynes and his musicians surrounding him on Man In Motion. The creativity is making an album of retrospective songs sound so suitable in 2011.

One big added bonus is the harmonious way all ten songs coexist together on Man In Motion. I’ve listened to this album many times now. I recommend Man In Motion to fans of discerning Rock taste and to those fans who keep their beer cold down in the creek; it makes no difference, this album comes across too damn refreshing. Warren Haynes has found, no, created a lucrative listen, into the world of a guitarist and vocalist who plays and sings with an immediacy that comes straight from his Rock and Roll soul.

* For more info on WARREN HAYNES, click on the link below:

Warren Haynes – Official Website

LONG LIVE WARREN HAYNES.

Stone.

GEORGE LYNCH – KILL ALL CONTROL: Album Artwork and Track Listing! Releases July 19, 2011!

Posted in Hard Rock, hard rock albums, Heavy Metal, heavy metal albums, heavy metal news, metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 18, 2011 by Metal Odyssey

GEORGE LYNCH – The ever legendary George Lynch, aka Mr. Scary, will be releasing his eleventh solo album KILL ALL CONTROL on July 19th, 2011, via Rocket Science. Joining Heavy Rockin’ forces with George Lynch on his new album are: drummer Adrian Ost (POWERMAN 5000) and vocalist London LeGrand (Brides Of Destruction).

London LeGrand is also credited as the singer for George’s Hard Rockin’ supergroup – Souls Of We, with their 2008 debut studio album Let The Truth Be Known receiving praise across the Rock, Hard Rock and Heavy Metal communities.

* KILL ALL CONTROL features world famous vocalists/artists: Marc Torien (Bullet Boys), Will Marten (Earshot), Keith St. John (Montrose) and drummer Fred Coury (Cinderella).

* George Lynch is the ex-lead guitarist for Arena Rock and Hair Metal/Heavy Metal legends DOKKEN. George founded the Hard Rock/Heavy Metal band Lynch Mob. Their 1990 debut studio album Wicked Sensation stands as their highest chart topping album. In 2008, George reunited Lynch Mob with original vocalist Oni Logan.

Lynch Mob have since released a brand new studio album of extremely memorable Hard Rock & Heavy Metal songs, with 2009’s: Smoke and Mirrors. A new and highly anticipated Lynch Mob album is forthcoming, later in 2011.

KILL ALL CONTROL – Track Listing:

Kill All Control

Brand New Day

Done

Flys On The Wall

Wicked Witch

Man On Fire

Voices In My Head

Resurrect

Here Comes The Sun

My Enemy

Son of Scary – (Featuring Fred Coury on drums)

* For more info on GEORGE LYNCH, click on the link below:

George Lynch – The Official Website Of Mr. Scary

LONG LIVE GEORGE LYNCH aka MR. SCARY.

Stone.

Ted Nugent – “Tied Up In Love” From 1984 Revisited!

Posted in classic rock, Guitar, guitar legends, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 23, 2011 by Metal Odyssey

TED NUGENT – Back in 1984, the 8th studio album from guitar and Rock legend Ted Nugent was released on Atlantic Records. This album was Penetrator and it ROCKS, regardless of what any snotty, red carpet, plastic faced, poser ridden, “professional” and overpaid Rock critics may have written about it over the decades. Ted Nugent had the vocal talent of Brian Howe on Penetrator. I’ve always enjoyed the vocals of Brian Howe, his solo material and (career) albums with Bad Company is always an excellent listen for me.

I bought Penetrator on vinyl back in ’84 at a department store called Bradlees. I no longer have that slab of vinyl… it’s a shame. One of my favorite songs from Penetrator is Tied Up In Love. This Ted Nugent album saw the inclusion of keyboards. Tied Up In Love gets a tempo boost from the keyboards. The elevation of sound these keys give this song never fails to psyche-me-out. Ted Nugent also adds many kickin’ guitar licks to Tied Up In Love. A true hard and heavy song classic from an album that I’ve never forgotten about. Metal be thy name.

Getting back to the keyboards, which are so prevalent in this melodically accessible Ted Nugent piece of history, is my maybe being a tad bias about keyboards in the first place. I’ve always revered the Classic Rock backbone sound of the B3 organ, only that takes us off topic by a few strands of corn hair. My love affair for the keyboards in Hard Rock and Heavy Metal is rather unshakable. The too numerous to count European Power Metal bands that I scream for in Metal glee, is true Metal measurement, to my everlasting infatuation towards the mighty sound that the keyboards bring to the Rock ‘N’ Roll party.

Here’s hoping you dig Ted Nugent’s Tied Up In Love as much as I do!

Track Listing For Penetrator:

Tied Up In Love

(Where Do You) Draw The Line

Knockin’ At Your Door

Don’t You Want My Love

Go Down Fighting

Thunder Thighs

No Man’s Land

Blame It On The Night

Lean Mean R&R Machine

Take Me Home

* For more info on TED NUGENT, just click on the link below:

TED NUGENT

TED NUGENT SHOULD BE INDUCTED INTO THE ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME. DAMMIT.

LONG LIVE TED NUGENT.

Stone.

Ozzy Osbourne Randy Rhoads Tribute – Live Album From 1987 Is Priceless, Old School, Heavy Metal History

Posted in classic rock, guitar legends, guitarists, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, heavy metal albums, heavy metal history, metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on March 23, 2011 by Metal Odyssey

OZZY OSBOURNE RANDY RHOADS TRIBUTE – How often do you turn to your collection of music, whether it be CDs, vinyl, cassettes or (gulp) 8 tracks for that refreshing listen in Old School?  And as you rummage through your music collection, you find that one Old School release you haven’t listened to in quite some time? It happened to me a couple of days ago. This Old School album I’ve revisited is Ozzy Osbourne Randy Rhoads – Tribute. I have this live Heavy Metal masterpiece on CD and cassette, once owning it on vinyl. This is a “double-album” release and all 14 songs are on one CD.

Why do I refer to this album as a masterpiece you question? This is the first and only live Ozzy Osbourne album that features the infinitely legendary Randy Rhoads (Randall William Rhoads) as guitarist. Randy Rhoads passed away at age 25, back on March 19, 1982. It was a “freak” small plane accident that took Randy Rhoads away from us all, halfway through the Diary Of A Madman tour. I won’t get into anymore details about this sad story… the internet is loaded with the complete story on this horrible day in Rock Music history.

There are three Black Sabbath classics heard on this live album: Iron ManChildren Of The Grave and Paranoid. Randy Rhoads did these Black Sabbath classics spectacular Metal justice on Tribute. Yes, Tony Iommi is the originator and guitar master of these Black Sabbath songs, there is no dispute. If anything, Randy and Tony are on the same Metal tier in my most honest Metal opinion. Two entirely different guitar styles and two unique legends of Heavy Metal and Rock history are they both. Each guitarist has carved out his individual Metal legacy for all eternity. What more can I say about that?

As I listen now, some 24 years after this live album has been released, the chills still run up and down my body when I crank these Heavy Metal classics up… just as it happened to me in 1987. When a live album or any album for that matter, can never lose it’s euphoric Metal vibe that it gives me, such as this one, then I Metal ordain it a Metal Masterpiece. I’m forever left spellbound by listening to Randy Rhoads play his riffs, leads and solo’s throughout this entire live album. The studio out-takes of Randy Rhoads playing Dee never ceases in capturing my full attention. The all encompassing Metal high I get from hearing these live versions of Flying High Again, I Don’t Know, Crazy Train and Mr. Crowley is a personal feeling that is priceless.

Randy Rhoads has a featured guitar solo on Suicide Solution and it is a dizzying listen into just how immense, influential and dynamic his guitar playing was… and forever will be. Ozzy’s vocals on these live songs sound just incredible to my ears, it’s vintage Ozzy. There will never be another Ozzy Osbourne, just like there shall never be another Randy Rhoads. These two ultra-amazing men of Metal created two magical albums together with Blizzard of Ozz (1980) and Diary Of A Madman (1981). Those were two back-to-back Heavy Metal albums that essentially catapulted Ozzy’s solo career to iconic heights and made Randy Rhoads, the guitarist, an everlasting influence and legend.

Both of these iconic Heavy Metal albums are celebrated on this live Tribute album and Ozzy Osbourne paid tribute to Randy Rhoads through it’s release. The guitar playing and song writing of Randy Rhoads shall be celebrated forever by this Metalhead. This is a live album that belongs in every Hard Rock and Metal fans collection of music, I can’t fathom any reason otherwise. Ozzy Osbourne Randy Rhoads – Tribute is a live album that captured important Heavy Metal and Rock music history, which will be passed down for Metal generations to come.

The band as listed in the “original” album liner notes:

Ozzy Osbourne – vocals

Randy Rhoads – guitar

Rudy Sarzo – bass

Tommy Aldridge – drums

Track Listing For Ozzy Osbourne Randy Rhoads – Tribute:

I Don’t Know

Crazy Train

Believer

Mr. Crowley

Flying High Again

Revelation (Mother Earth)

Steal Away (The Night) (With Drum Solo)

Suicide Solution (With Guitar Solo)

Iron Man

Children Of The Grave

Paranoid

Goodbye To Romance

No Bone Movies

Dee (Randy Rhoads Studio Out-Takes)

* Ozzy Osbourne Randy Rhoads – Tribute was produced and engineered by Max Norman. The executive producer was Ozzy Osbourne.

* Ozzy Osbourne Randy Rhoads – Tribute was released March 19, 1987, on Epic Records.

The combination of knowing that the month of March marks the passing of Randy Rhoads and speaking with “DeadDave” of Dead Daves Radio.com about Old School Heavy Metal over this past weekend, prompted me to dig out this classic work of live Heavy Metal… without my even thinking about it. I guess needing to listen to Ozzy Osbourne Randy Rhoads – Tribute was imbedded in my Metal sub-conscious, all along this past week.

I met “DeadDave” for the first time in my Metal life at the COLD, KOPEK, Egypt Central, Oceans Divide and Maddam Ink. concert at the Crocodile Rock Cafe on Saturday, March 19th. I’ll tell the world this much… “DeadDave” is one cool dude who likes his Horror, Hard Rock and Heavy Metal. Thanks for the conversations “DeadDave” and for the Metal knowledge you shared as well.

Long Live Ozzy Osbourne.

Rest In Peace, Randy Rhoads.

Stone.

GARY MOORE, GUITAR LEGEND – REST IN PEACE

Posted in blues rock, classic rock, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, metal odyssey, Music, rock and roll, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , on February 6, 2011 by Metal Odyssey

GARY MOORE – The Official Website for Gary Moore has reported today, Sunday, February 6, 2011, the following sad message: “It is with deep sorrow and regret, that we have to announce that Gary Moore passed away while on holiday in Spain last night. Our thoughts are with his children, family and friends at this sad time. Gary Moore, RIP.”

Metal Odyssey expresses heartfelt condolences to the children, family, friends and fans of Gary Moore. Gary Moore was and forever will be a guitar legend. The sounds I’ve always heard come from the guitar of Gary Moore were also musical lyrics… for Gary Moore could make his guitar sing to my ears. As a vocalist, Gary Moore kept it real, there were no pretensions.

To say that I am saddened and shocked at learning the news of Gary Moore passing away is an absolute understatement. Gary Moore has left us all with an incredible and extensive catalog of music, that will live on forever. From Hard Rock to the Blues, Gary Moore’s music has made many happy moments for me throughout my life. The music of Gary Moore will continue to have that same affect on me, without question. I’m certain countless others feel this same way. The music of Gary Moore will live on forever.

One of my favorite albums from Gary Moore is After The War. This album was released back in 1989. I can’t say it enough times, just how much this album has lifted my spirits and made me feel great over the years. That’s the magical thing that musicians and vocalists can do… they can move you to greater emotional heights, especially when you are feeling down. Thank you Gary Moore for making this fan feel great from the music you created.

Back on June 6th, 2010, I wrote a review on the album – After The War. I aimed to salute this sensational album and give Gary Moore his deserved and just applause. If you would like to read it, just click the header below:

GARY MOORE “AFTER THE WAR” – A HARD ROCKIN’ & HEAVY HITTING GEM FROM 1989

REST IN PEACE, GARY MOORE.

1952 – 2011

Stone.

The Yngwie Malmsteen Collection – Revisiting This Guitar Legend’s 1991 Greatest Hits

Posted in classic rock, guitarists, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, metal music, metal odyssey, Music, neoclassical metal, rock music, rock music news, speed metal with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 6, 2011 by Metal Odyssey

YNGWIE MALMSTEEN – Back in November of 1991, The Yngwie Malmsteen Collection was released on Polydor Records. This Yngwie Malmsteen compilation spans the first six albums of his career, from 1984 to 1990. These albums are: Rising Force (1984), Marching Out (1985), Trilogy (1986), Odyssey (1988), Trial By Fire: Live In Leningrad (1989) and Eclipse (1990).

Of these first six Yngwie Malmsteen albums, the only one I have on CD is Odyssey. Eclipse I have on cassette and the other four I have on vinyl. Sounds crazy, huh? The $ factor comes into play, whenever the desire to upgrade my entire collection of music to CD crosses my Metal mind. Regardless, I have these Yngwie albums on old school formats and I’m content. About seven years ago, on a lazy Saturday, I took a leisurely stroll into Strawberries Records & Tapes, back in my hometown up in very expensive Connecticut. That day I zeroed in on The Yngwie Malmsteen Collection… it was calling my name.

At this time of my life, seven years ago, my wife and I were really cutting corners and trying to make ends meet… and the ends were not interested in meeting either. Purchasing one CD would send me into guilt city. I took the Metal plunge, held my breath and Metal be thy name I purchased this Yngwie Malmsteen bonanza of songs. It has served me right ever since. Yes, by now you might have guessed I am giddy about listening to Yngwie Malmsteen over the years. I really enjoy listening to his guitar playing, his Neoclassical style is pioneering and legendary, in my Metal opinion.

I’ve always enjoyed listening to every vocalist that Yngwie Malmsteen has recruited for his albums as well. I’m not trying to sound like Mr. Sunshine wants everyone happy when I state this. No, I will readily admit that Mark Boals and Joe Lynn Turner are my favorite vocalists from the entire Yngwie Malmsteen catalog, which includes his most recent release of 2010’s Relentless, which boasts Tim “Ripper” Owens on vocals, (with Yngwie singing Look At You Now). If someone out there asks: hey Stone, c’mon, pick one or the other, Mark Boals or Joe Lynn Turner!? My Metal answer is easy: it’s a tie… Metal be thy name, a tie.

I recommend anyone who is just getting interested in Yngwie Malmsteen to get ahold of this CD. These fourteen songs are a magnificent representation of Yngwie’s first six albums. From the live cover of the Jimi Hendrix classic – Spanish Castle Magic, to Queen In Love, this compilation shows not a flaw, in my Metal opinion once again. Veteran fans of Yngwie who don’t own his first six albums on CD entirely, may want to grab this collection for the same reason I did.

Yngwie Malmsteen Facts To Know:

* Yngwie means: young Viking chief

* Born: In Sweden on June 30, 1963

* Yngwie Malmsteen taught himself how to play guitar.

* The late and legendary Jimi Hendrix inspired Yngwie to play guitar, only it was the image of Jimi Hendrix more so than his music that influenced Yngwie.

* At the age of 15, Yngwie quit school and landed a job at a music shop in Stockholm, Sweden, repairing guitars.

* The debut 1984 album Yngwie J. Malmsteen’s Rising Force was nominated for a Grammy Award.

* (Source for these Yngwie facts found in the liner notes of this CD)

* For more info on Yngwie, just click here: YNGWIE MALMSTEEN

* I’ve listed below, next to each song in the track listing, the album of origin along with the respective vocalist. Instrumentals are noted.

Track Listing:

Black Star Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force – (instrumental)

Far Beyond The Sun Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force – (instrumental)

I’ll See The Light Tonight Marching Out – Jeff Scott Soto

You Don’t Remember, I’ll Never Forget Trilogy – Mark Boals

Liar Trilogy – Mark Boals

Queen In Love Trilogy – Mark Boals

Hold OnOdyssey – Joe Lynn Turner

Heaven Tonight Odyssey – Joe Lynn Turner

Deja Vu Odyssey – Joe Lynn Turner

Guitar Solo Trial By Fire: Live In Leningrad – (instrumental)

Spanish Castle Magic Trial By Fire: Live In Leningrad – Joe Lynn Turner

JudasEclipse – Göran Edman

Making Love Eclipse – Göran Edman

Eclipse Eclipse – (instrumental)

LONG LIVE YNGWIE MALMSTEEN.

The word “giddy” was used in paragraph 3.

Stone.

Marty Friedman – Happy Birthday From Metal Odyssey!

Posted in guitar legends, guitarists, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news, speed metal, Thrash Metal with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 8, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

MARTY FRIEDMAN – World renowned & legendary guitarist Marty Friedman turns 48 years old today, December 8, 2010. Happy Metal Birthday Marty! Marty Friedman solidified his elite guitar status during his days as a Metal axe slinger for the ultra-legendary Megadeth, appearing on five of their albums. Marty played guitar alongside Dave Mustaine, on such seminal Megadeth albums as: Rust In Peace, Countdown To Extinction, Youthanasia, Cryptic Writings and Risk.

Marty was already the established and well revered guitarist among the Heavy Metal universe before that historic gig. Teaming up with guitar great Jason Becker to form Cacophony, releasing Speed Metal Symphony in 1987, on Shrapnel Records. Speed Metal and the art of shredding was highlighted by the neo-classical Metal techniques and skill that Marty and Jason bestowed with their Cacophony team-up. Go Off! was the second and final studio album from Cacophony, released in 1988, (Shrapnel).

That is Marty on the left, Jason on the right, (above album cover). This was a very cool album then and it still is now. Metal Odyssey highly recommends both Cacophony albums… don’t pay attention to any old and stale mainstream album reviews on ’em, those mainstream Rock critics don’t know what they’re listening to anyways.

* Marty Friedman founded the Heavy Metal band Hawaii, back in 1982. From 1983 to 1985, Hawaii released three full-length studio albums. Hawaii could best be described as Speed meets Power Metal.

* Marty Friedman has also released 12 solo albums, (studio & live combined), from 1988 to 2010 and has always been known for his instructional videos/DVD’s on guitar playing and techniques as well.

* Above is a really cool Japanese promo poster/ad for Marty Friedman’s 1996 solo album – True Obsessions, released on Shrapnel Records.

* For more info on Marty Friedman, just click on the cool link below:

Marty Friedman – Official Website

LONG LIVE MARTY FRIEDMAN.

Stone.

Yngwie Malmsteen “relentless” – Releases November 22, 2010!

Posted in guitar legends, Hard Rock, hard rock music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal news, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 6, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

YNGWIE MALMSTEEN – Guitar legend and arguably guitar god, Yngwie Malmsteen will be releasing relentless on his own Rising Force Records. The street date for relentless is November 22, 2010. Once again, this is another solid reminder, that 2010 is not yet over when it comes to highly anticipated Heavy Metal album releases.

I am used to Tuesday being the “release” date for new albums, the release date of November 22nd falls on a Monday for restless. Everywhere this new Yngwie Malmsteen album is mentioned, the same release date of November 22nd is stated. It really makes no difference to me… I’m Metal psyched just knowing that Yngwie Malmsteen has this album coming out, period!

What compliments and praise can be said about Yngwie Malmsteen that hasn’t already been stated? My Metal adulation for Yngwie can go on for thousands of words… I guess I’ve made my Metal point. It’s just a cozy feeling knowing that another Yngwie album is coming out… and just in time for Thanksgiving too.

Tim “Ripper” Owens will be making his second appearance as vocalist for Yngwie Malmsteen. His first album with Yngwie was on 2008’s Perpetual Flame. For those who may be unfamiliar, Tim “Ripper” Owens has been the lead vocalist for Judas Priest, Winters Bane and Iced Earth. “Ripper” also founded his own band, Beyond Fear, which they released their one album in 2006, aptly titled, Beyond Fear. Metal Supergroup, Charred Walls Of The Damned showcases “Ripper” on lead vocals and their self-titled debut album was released in February of 2010.

Track Listing For relentless:

Overture

Critical Mass

Shot Across The Bow

Look At You Now

Relentless

Enemy Within

Knight Of The Vasa Order

Caged Animal

Into Valhalla

Tide Of Desire

Adagio B Flat Minor Variation

Axe To Grind

Blinded

Cross To Bear

Arpeggios From Hell

LONG LIVE YNGWIE J. MALMSTEEN.

The word “cozy” was used as an adjective in this Metal Odyssey post.

Stone.

PANTERA – “THE WILL TO SURVIVE” DEMO IS A HIDDEN METAL TREASURE

Posted in hard rock music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal albums, heavy metal bands, heavy metal history, heavy metal music, heavy metal news, heavy metal songs, metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 20, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

PANTERA – On September 14, 2010, Rhino Records released the 3-CD Deluxe Edition of Cowboys From Hell. PANTERA rules. Originally released back on July 17, 1990, on Atco Records, this was the album that catapulted PANTERA as a relentless and blazingly bad-ass live band. Metal be thy name, that is the truth. 2010 ushered in the 20th Anniversay of Cowboys From Hell, whoa… seems like yesterday to me when this unreal great album came out. Cowboys From Hell marked the fifth studio album from PANTERA… the first four being on their own label called Metal Magic. PANTERA rules.

It’s an endless Metal debate, as to which PANTERA album is the very best. I like to go with Cowboys From Hell, Vulgar Display Of Power and Far Beyond Driven as my personal top three. Hell, it’s very difficult for me to pin one PANTERA album against another. PANTERA rules. As I see it, PANTERA was the pit bull in the backyard, that was set loose to protect and spread the cause of Metal in the decade of the ’90’s… and they did just that and then some. Metal be thy name.

There is one demo, that was never released before, on disc 3 (the demo disc) which is The Will To Survive. Whoa, do I like this song a Metal ton. Phil Anselmo sounds like Rob Halford… or can I say has some heavy duty Rob Halford influence in his vocals, on this demo. After listening to this song a couple dozen more times… I will even make a Metal stretch by saying, that I hear a bit of Geoff Tate in the vocals of Phil Anselmo too. The Will To Survive of course was written and had it’s parts recorded well before there was a Vulgar Display Of Power, even before Cowboys From Hell.

I’m calling The Will To Survive demo a hidden Metal treasure. Why? For one, it’s not a song I would have expected to hear on this deluxe edition of Cowboys From Hell. Sure, the thought crossed my mind of maybe hearing something from the Metal Magic era of PANTERA… only this song surpasses what I initially thought it would sound like, both in it’s Traditional Metal style and sound. Trust me… the late and ultra legendary Dimebag sounds fabulous on guitar too, giving The Will To Survive a Speed Metal/Power Metal vibe that really leaves me whining for more.

If there were more hidden Metal treasures like The Will To Survive still on tape somewhere… locked away… I pray that Vinnie Paul, Rex Brown and Phil Anselmo would turn ’em loose on us fans someday, with one entire CD of PANTERA songs that have NEVER been heard before in any form. PANTERA rules.

Why do I keep stating “PANTERA rules” throughout this post you may query? There really is nuthin’ to question here… PANTERA F’N RULES. Always did… always will. Call me a PANTERA fan boy? Hell, I’m not alone there and I’m in good company, thank you very much. Plus, I’m damn proud to be one. Yes, I strongly urge any and all fans of Metal and of course, PANTERA, to get a copy of this Cowboys From Hell 20th Anniversary Deluxe Edition.

* Recently, I interviewed Phil Anselmo for my very good Metal Buddies over at HARD ROCK HIDEOUT. You can check out this HARD ROCK HIDEOUT exclusive by clicking the large link below or by clicking any HARD ROCK HIDEOUT link you see here.

PHIL ANSELMO – THE HARD ROCK HIDEOUT INTERVIEW!l

*An abbreviated breakdown of the 3 disc Cowboys From Hell – 2oth Anniversary Deluxe Edition:

* Disc 1 is the Cowboys From Hell studio album remastered. Disc 2 contains 12 live songs. Disc 3 has 11 demos from the Cowboys From Hell sessions, which includes The Will To Survive.

LONG LIVE THE METAL OF PANTERA!

REST IN PEACE, DIMEBAG.

Stone.


JIMI HENDRIX – HIS MUSIC FOREVER LIVES ON

Posted in guitar legends, Hard Rock, hard rock albums, hard rock bands, Heavy Metal, heavy metal albums, heavy metal bands, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal history, heavy metal music, heavy metal news, metal odyssey, Music, rock guitarists, rock music, rock music history, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 18, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

JIMI HENDRIX – Back on September 18, 1970, Jimi Hendrix passed away in London, England, at age 27. Forty years ago, the loss of Jimi Hendrix was just getting underway. Getting into the exact details of where Jimi Hendrix died and how he died is not my purpose here. I am solely reflecting on my introduction to his music as a young teen and how his music continues to entertain me to this very day. Check that… the music of Jimi Henrix continues to bring me joy to this very day.

Back when I was in high school in the early 1980’s, (1980-85), Jimi Hendrix was a huge favorite amongst the crowd of kids I hung with who listened to Heavy Metal. (Yes, I did “extra time” in high school… big deal). Even the kids who listened to straight up Rock and Hard Rock listened to Jimi Hendrix too. It seemed as if no one dared to say they didn’t dig Hendrix back then… he was too cool and bigger than life, regardless if he had passed away a decade earlier. There was this mystique, an almost reverent aura about the songs that Jimi Hendrix sang and played guitar on back in those days. I still get that sense of mystique, a brilliant vibe of reverence when I listen to Jimi Hendrix now… in 2010.

Why the reverence? The mystique? Well, in my Metal opinion, who else can be looked upon as the leading pioneer of electric Heavy Metal guitar? The riffs. Oh, those riffs. Seriously, who else back in 1967 was playing that style of “heavy guitar”? On a consistent level? Yes, you can go back through Rock ‘N’ Roll history with a magnifying glass and find those guitarists who “flirted” with some “heavy” riffs before and during the Jimi Hendrix era. I’m only being real about the impact that Jimi Hendrix had on Rock Music history. His guitar and vocals were so unique to the time that it’s a mesmerizing thought to behold.

It is difficult to pinpoint which was the first Jimi Hendrix song I ever heard, although I will venture to guess it was Foxy Lady. The three FM radio stations I listened to, while in high school, were WCCC and WHCN out of Hartford, the third being WPLR out of New Haven, Connecticut. Those three FM stations played Jimi Hendrix like it was going out of style the Beatles, The WhoRUSH and Led Zeppelin were also played so continuously, that I found no reason to buy all of their albums right away. It’s quite possible to admit, that I listened to Jimi Hendrix each day of my high school life due to those FM radio stations. Truthfully.

Of course, I borrowed and listened to Are You Experienced, Axis: Bold As Love and Electric Ladyland from my friends before I owned them. Swapping albums was the norm back then… not too many of us had the cash to run out and buy every album we wanted. Those are and always will be the “big 3” Jimi Hendrix albums for me. Sure, there have been many other studio albums released after his death, only these are the three albums that defined Jimi Hendrix and made me one of his countless fans.

To stop and reflect for a second, on just how many times I have listened to Jimi Hendrix over the years is mind numbing. Then, to realize that I have never grown tired of the music that Jimi Hendrix created is a double shot of mind numb. Yes, this is all my personal opinion and the way I truly feel. Jimi Hendrix was a pioneering guitar player who paved the way for Heavy Metal to be where it is today. I sometimes wonder what Jimi Hendrix would think of Metal Music in 2010? What would Jimi Hendrix have to say, during those “building block” years of Heavy Metal during the 1970’s and 1980’s? Man, it would be very cool to know.

There could never be another set of album releases such as the first 3 from the Jimi Hendrix Experience. To have three albums in a row, with such amazingly memorable songs is unparalleled. Purple Haze, Crosstown Traffic and All Along The Watchtower… really, what more can be said for the originality and pure heaviness of their time? Timeless is a powerful word… Jimi Hendrix epitomizes this word each and every time I listen to his music.

Rest In Peace, Jimi Hendrix.

Thank you for your timeless music.

Stone.

BLACKMORE’S NIGHT “SECRET VOYAGE” – I’M ON BOARD FOR THIS MUSICAL JOURNEY!

Posted in classic rock, classic rock music, folk rock music, metal odyssey, Music, renaissance music, rock and roll, rock guitarists, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

BLACKMORE’S NIGHTRitchie Blackmore has never abandoned his love affair for creating incredible classical sounds with his guitar. The lure and attraction for Renaissance music has made Ritchie Blackmore and Candice Night become an impeccable duo of musical minds and talent since their 1997 Blackmore’s Night album debut – Shadow Of The Moon. With 1970’s era Rainbow, Ritchie Blackmore intertwined the Renaissance sound with bluesy Rock and Hard Rock like no other. It only makes sense to me, that Ritchie has taken his immeasurable musical talents to this extraordinary level of existence with Blackmore’s Night, so many years ago.

No one will find the supercharged Hard Rock sound of Straight Between The Eyes or Bent Out Of Shape with Blackmore’s Night. This is another world of music prowess for Ritchie Blackmore and I’m admittedly hooked on this Secret Voyage… it’s an impossible thought for me not to embrace this music. If it’s not the guitar virtuosity of Ritchie, then it’s the beautiful and mesmerizing voice of Candice Night that thrills my ears and mind into a state of… joy.

Rainbow Eyes is such a wonderful song to hear and Candice Night’s vocals just might have me growing wings and flying through the sky… in my Secret Voyage dreams that is. Taking a Rainbow classic, such as Rainbow Eyes from the 1978 album Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll and covering it this way is certainly a musically credible move by Ritchie Blackmore, in my Metal opinion.

The liner notes to Secret Voyage characterize the music created by Blackmore’s Night as Renaissance/Folk/Rock and I won’t disagree. What should be conveyed here to all, is this style of music should not be judged until it is heard. Anytime the words “Folk” or “Renaissance” come into view of a Rock/Hard Rock or Heavy Metal platform such as Metal Odyssey, it can become quite deceptive. Music genres unfortunately can fall victim to stereotyping, sad but true.

In listening to Blackmore’s Night, I have become all the more rich in my quest for hearing all the great works of Ritchie Blackmore. The elements and styles of music heard from Blackmore’s Night are not worlds apart compared to that of early Rainbow and many of the works of Yngwie J. Malmsteen. I can even go further by adding in The Electric Light Orchestra or The Moody Blues as well, when it comes to stylistic comparisons.

Can’t Help Falling In Love is easily guilty of being the “heaviest” song on Secret Voyage, with both it’s tempo and overall energy of sound. Trust me, this is not the molasses sweet and teary eyed original version of Can’t Help Falling In Love made famous and sung by the unreal legendary Elvis Presley in the 1961 film – Blue Hawaii. Forget the UB40 cover version of this song as well… for Candice Night and Ritchie Blackmore make Can’t Help Falling In Love an upbeat, Rockin’ and inspirational listen, like it has never been done before.

The Renaissance fair kicks into high gear with the song – Peasant’s Promise. Once again, the music shares center stage with Candice Night’s vocals. As I listen to this song, I surely wish I owned and could play a shawm, so I could bounce around my surroundings while I gleefully take part in this Renaissance Folk euphoria that I’m experiencing. I’m not kidding or being a wise-guy here. The more I listen to Secret Voyage, the more I wonder as to why this album did not win one of those coveted Grammy’s? Politics I reason.

Far Far Away has a tinge of Enya “style” background chorus/vocals, which only enhances the sensory backdrop of this earthy fortified song. Very mellow, very soft are the vocals of Candice Night on Empty Words… coupled with the acoustic magic that resonates from Ritchie’s guitar are enough to make my Metal heart melt, like a slab of butter on an open fire. Hey Celine Dion… I have two words for you… Candice Night. Metal be thy name.

Guitar enthusiasts, Rainbow and Ritchie Blackmore fans should already be in the know with Blackmore’s Night. Fans of Folk, Renaissance Folk/Rock may very well become enriched with the sounds of Secret Voyage. Any Old School Metalhead like myself, that has a spot in their Metal heart for the guitar greats of our generation, might just take a dive into Blackmore’s Night and fall victim to this living legend’s guitar once again. Ritchie Blackmore and Candice Night come across to my ears as two musicians who were born to be together, not only as husband and wife, as Blackmore’s Night as well.

* Blackmore’s Night – Secret Voyage was released on July 15, 2008, on Steamhammer/SPV. Secret Voyage is the seventh studio album from Blackmore’s Night.

* For more info on Ritchie Blackmore, Candice Night and Blackmore’s Night, just click on the link below:

THE RITCHIE BLACKMORE & BLACKMORE’S NIGHT – Official Website

* A special thanks to Metal Mark at Heavy Metal Time Machine for pushing this album my way.

Track Listing For Secret Voyage:

God Save The Keg

Locked Within The Crystal Ball

Gilded Cage

Toast To Tomorrow

Prince Waldeck’s Galliard

Rainbow Eyes

The Circle

Sister Gypsy

Can’t Help Falling In Love

Peasant’s Promise

Far Far Away

Empty Words

LONG LIVE BLACKMORE’S NIGHT!

Stone.

RUDOLF SCHENKER – HAPPY BIRTHDAY FROM METAL ODYSSEY!

Posted in classic rock music, hard rock bands, hard rock music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal bands, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal history, heavy metal music, heavy metal news, metal odyssey, Music, rock and roll, rock guitarists, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 30, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

RUDOLF SCHENKER – Born on August 31, 1948, Rudolf Schenker turns a Rockin’ cool… 62! Tuesday, August 31, 2010, is Rudolf Schenker day at Metal Odyssey! Happy Birthday Rudolf! Metal Odyssey wishes you all the very best in your Metal endeavors on your birthday! May all the peace, love and good health be with you always!

Words cannot express, just how much your music with the Scorpions has meant to me, during my whole life.

* Pictured in above Scorpions photo, left to right: Pawel Maciwoda, Klaus Meine, Matthias Jabs, James Kottak and the birthday dude… Rudolf Schenker!

* On June 27, 2010, I posted about my Rockin’ experience seeing the Scorpions live at the 2010 M3 Rock Festival. Click on the big ol’ link below to read about it if you like:

SCORPIONS AT M3 ROCK FESTIVAL 2010 – THANK YOU SCORPS!!

LONG LIVE RUDOLF SCHENKER!

LONG LIVE SCORPIONS ROCK ‘N’ ROLL!

Stone.

SANTANA AND THAT SUMMERTIME VIBE

Posted in classic rock, classic rock bands, classic rock music, Guitar, guitar legends, Hard Rock, hard rock bands, hard rock music, metal odyssey, Music, rock & roll, rock and roll, rock guitarists, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 10, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

SANTANA – I am guilty of associating many songs, albums and even bands/musicians to a certain season of the year. In the past, I wrote that RUSH is my Winter band… a band I turn to when I’m driving in snowstorms. Maybe the whole music imbedding “thing” comes into play here. When I used to live in Northwestern Connecticut, the snowstorms were very generous and very consistent, couple that with RUSH being a super HUGE band in that area of the world and maybe the exposure factor really left it’s mark with me.

Come Wintertime, it just felt as if FM stations played RUSH every 5 minutes while I was growing up, in very expensive Connecticut. Therefore, I gather that all the parameters were lining up for my RUSH/Winter imbedding many years ago.

I led with my RUSH and Wintertime “vibe” (as I’ll now call it), to introduce what is my Summertime “vibe” band… or musician… take your pick for it’s Santana. Yes, we all know that Santana is an exemplary musician and yes, Santana has always had a fabulous band behind him, (the original Santana band lineup is in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame). Therefore, referring to Santana as either a band or musician can go both ways. Now, if you want to get picky, I can say… Carlos Santana, the exemplary and legendary guitarist. I’ll just stick to “Santana” and hopefully we can all agree.

Since I was a young lad, Santana always had an open sound to his guitar tone… a feeling of sunny days and hot weather just seems to drift over me when I hear him play. Driving to the beach comes to mind each time I listen to Black Magic Woman. This song has me seeing visions of ocean waves slapping against the hot sand of the beach, while I feel my feet burrowing into the deeper depths of the cool sand. Black Magic Woman has always been a Summer chill-out song for me… so listening to it while driving in a snowstorm would ruin it’s ambiance, in my own mind.

Santana can tell a story with his guitar, having a lead vocalist on his songs proves to be a bonus for my ears. If there ever was a song that Santana speaks that mystical guitar language through his playing, it is Black Magic Woman. Captivating is the word.

Back in the Summer of 1999, my wife was expecting with our twin daughters… and so was I expecting too. We were on the threshold of a forever life changing event, the birth of our daughters with a target date of late September. That Summer of ’99 was extremely hot and humid… abnormally humid as the “weather experts” were saying back then. (You know those “weather experts”… they get it right every time). One album that kept my wife and I from going bananas during that period in our lives was… Santana – Supernatural.

As Metal as my witness, this Santana album chilled us out, as well as it lifted our spirits and made us feel very comfortable… on our journey to becoming first time parents. This Supernatural album just cast a magical spell on us… we would listen each day and night to those Summer Grooves and melodies of Santana’s guitar and be glad we did. Our favorite song from Supernatural was of course, Smooth, with Rob Thomas on lead vocals. That song is a quintessential Summertime Santana song if there ever was one. The music video for Smooth was a hit back in ’99 too… it radiates Summertime cool in the city streets.

It has gotten to the point, that when I see a photo of Carlos Santana, I think of Summer. Carlos “Summertime” Santana. Gee Metal whiz… it’s just me I guess. The same can be said for Jimmy Buffet, only equating Summertime and the ocean to Jimmy is way too obvious. Jimmy Buffet is all about songs that stir up images of the Tropics and fun in the Summer sun. However… I can never eat a cheeseburger without thinking of Jimmy Buffet… (I don’t drink Margaritas by the way).

I never want to resist or ignore the positive memories and images that music provides me. Just as I equate a song, album, musician or band to a season, I can equally equate them to specific moments in my life. Santana just happens to be an example of just how good music makes me feel.

* Santana (entire original band), was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 1998.

* For more info on the ever legendary guitarist, songwriter, musician and Rock And Roll Hall Of Famer – Carlos Santana, just click on this link: SANTANA – Official Web Site

* For more info on my favorite Wintertime band, RUSH, click here: RUSH Aw, heck, RUSH is a favorite of mine all year long.

LONG LIVE SANTANA!

… AND RUSH & JIMMY BUFFET TOO!

Stone.

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.

GARY MOORE “AFTER THE WAR” – A HARD ROCKIN’ & HEAVY HITTING GEM FROM 1989

Posted in hard rock albums, hard rock music, hard rock songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal albums, heavy metal bands, heavy metal history, heavy metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock 'n' roll, rock and roll, rock guitarists, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 6, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

GARY MOORE – With twenty studio albums and five live albums to his legendary music credit, Gary Moore has played it all. From Rock to Hard Rock and Heavy Metal to Blues, Gary Moore’s name is synonymous with guitar icon. One of my favorite Gary Moore albums is After The War, which was released back on January 25, 1989 on Virgin Records. After The War is a Hard Rock album and can be easily considered Heavy Metal, due to Gary Moore’s guitar style that he so effortlessly displays. I have always been enamored by Gary Moore’s guitar and his vocals, both are showcased in a grand way on After The War.

Anytime I listen to After The War, it is like turning the key on the ignition and letting these songs take me for a terrific Hard Rockin’ ride. Never does Gary Moore ever lose me while he plays guitar. He is just one of those elite musicians that can make his guitar sing with emotion. In my Metal opinion, Gary Moore has that unique, unintended ability to have me listen more to his guitar playing than his vocals. That is not an insult, it is a significant reality that occurs to my ears and Gary Moore can sing with the best of them.

* As I continue on reviewing After The War, please bear in mind it is the cassette release from 1989 that I am referring to. This is the only version I have owned all of these years. Any regular visitor to Metal Odyssey knows of my never fading fondness for the cassette. I’ve taken care of my cassettes over the years and they have taken care of me. Metal be thy name.

The song opener After The War, is melodic filled, with strong vocals, backing vocals and guitar licks aplenty from Gary Moore. Keyboards play an important atmospheric role throughout this song and entire album, courtesy of Andy Richards and Don Airey. Speak For Yourself is a Heavy Metal song that is standout. Gary Moore makes it all the more Heavy with a mid-song solo that scorches. A fast tempo and loaded with attitude from Gary Moore’s vocals, Speak For Yourself just has that extra crunch I like to hear.

Livin’ On Dreams is yet another standout song, and there are quite a few like this on After The War. Very harmonious backing vocals that compliment Gary Moore’s more spirited vocals are what makes Livin’ On Dreams come across as inspiring. A melodic, Hard Rock listen that is an Old School treat, due to it’s sing-a-long vibe. The Messiah Will Come Again is an instrumental that proves why Gary Moore plays from his heart and Rock ‘N’ Roll soul. The tonal emotion that spills over from his guitar playing, has me staring into space in sheer Metal wonderment, each and every time I listen to this song over the years. With Gary Moore’s touch and feel for the Blues, The Messiah Will Come Again needs to be heard by any and every guitar aficionado the world over.

The accompaniment of musicians that surround Gary Moore on After The War is top tier talent. Step in, Ozzy Osbourne please. On Led Clones, Ozzy is the lead vocalist and he sounds vintage and great. Led Clones is saturated with keyboards, written in such a manner where these keyboards are an audible necessity. The programming of strings and utilizing them in Led Clones really accentuates this song’s subjectivity. This song is about the many bands back in the 1980’s that tried to “copycat” the sound and brilliance of the legendary Led Zeppelin.

Running From The Storm is an excellent song, with it’s pent up heaviness and deliriously melodic sound. It’s as if each musician assembled here brought their A game to this song. Gary Moore just embellishes Running From The Storm with his trademark leads and a potent solo for good measure. Ready For Love is the commercial/mainstream Hard Rocker that makes me feel F’n damn good from head to F’n toe. If Gary Moore’s vocals and guitar doesn’t grab you on this flavorful song, then something is dreadfully wrong. The rhythm section is tight and grooves, keeping the  tempo consistently upbeat and steady. Ready For Love is very relevant to what 2010 Hard Rock and mainstream Heavy Metal is about. What am I saying… this entire After The War album is extremely relevant to the now.

* Check out the music video below – Ready For Love, from 1989! Crank it up LOUD!!

The Musicians On After The War:

Gary Moore – lead vocals & guitar

Andy Richards – keyboards/Fairlight Programming

Don Airey – keyboards

Simon Phillips – drums

Charlie Morgan – drums

Steve Piggot – sequencer bass

Laurence Cottle – Wal Bass

Andrew Eldritch, Chris Thompson, Sam Brown, Miriam Stockley – backing vocals

* Ozzy Osbourne contributes backing vocals on Speak For Yourself.

* Metal Odyssey note: the track listing below is for the cassette release from 1989.

Track Listing For After The War:

Side One:

After The War

Speak For Yourself

Livin’ On Dreams

Led Clones

The Messiah Will Come Again

Side Two:

Running From The Storm

This Thing Called Love

Ready For Love

Blood Of Emeralds

Dunluce

LONG LIVE GARY MOORE & HIS ROCK ‘N’ ROLL!

Stone.

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