Archive for hard rock album review

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).


HAPPY METAL BIRTHDAY ANTHONY KIEDIS! PLUS “ONE HOT MINUTE” REVISITED

Posted in 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's rock music, 1980's rock bands, 1990's classic rock albums, 1990's classic rock music, 1990's classic rock vocalists, 1990's college music, 1990's hard rock music, 1990's rock bands, 1990's rock music, 1990's hard rock albums, 1990's hard rock bands, Album Review, alternative rock bands, alternative rock music, alternative rock music albums, classic rock music, essential classic rock albums, essential classic rock songs, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, hard rock music, hard rock vocalists, metal odyssey, Music, rock & roll, rock album review, rock and roll, rock celebrity birthdays, rock guitarists, rock music, rock vocalists with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 1, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Red Hot Chili Peppers logoMetal Odyssey extends a loud Happy Metal Birthday to Anthony Kiedis! Anthony was born on November 1, 1962 and he turns 47 today. Anthony co-founded and is the lead singer for The Red Hot Chili Peppers. My favorite Red Hot Chili Peppers album is one hot minute, (released on September 12, 1995 on Warner Bros). My three favorite songs from one hot minute are Warped, Aeroplane and My Friends. It is surprising to even me, that I really like the song My Friends such a great deal, due to it being a mid paced Rock ballad. Still, this song seemed to capture my attention back upon it’s release, it still does when I listen to it. The presence of Dave Navarro on guitar makes one hot minute a more heavier sounding version of The Red Hot Chili Peppers, in my Metal opinion. This is an album that I have to honestly say, bridged the gap between Grunge gradually losing it’s stranglehold on popularity and Heavy Metal making a comeback in the public eye. (That is my Metal opinion, I cannot help myself).

One hot minute made total sense to me upon it’s release back in 1995, it still does. The songs carry out a continuous Rock vibe while not adhering to one specific trend of the day. A very polished album, (produced by Rick Rubin), one hot minute is exemplary of what the mainstream was embracing as acceptable heavy, whenever it came anywhere near Hard Rock or (gasp), Heavy Metal. With a toned down Metallica on the loose in the mid 1990’s, The Red Hot Chili Peppers were not toning it down with one hot minute… based on their style of Rock. Their sixth studio album and a multi-platinum seller, one hot minute obviously had some hot chart success. (With that said, I have never been one to judge an album based on chart positions). I have always appreciated this band, what is there not to like about the musicianship of Flea on bass and Chad Smith on drums as well? A Rock rhythm section solidified.

Getting back to Anthony Kiedis… I have and always will be greatly entertained by his vocals. Anthony also has written some clever lyrics that many times touched on his own inner battles with addictions. The diverse style of Anthony’s vocals make him a Rock singer that is without question, truly one of a kind. From Funk to Heavy Metal and everything in-between, The Red Hot Chili Peppers have touched on it all, with Anthony Kiedis cementing his dynamic vocal stamp on each song in their extensive catalog. From my perception, listening to Anthony Kiedis sing using so many styles, leads me to believe he has an admirable respect for all genres of music. The alternative and artistic overlays of The Red Hot Chili Peppers brand of Rock cannot be discounted… neither can the vocals of Anthony Kiedis ever be denied.

The Red Hot Chili Peppers "one hot minute" large album pic

DOMMIN – “E.P.” Has Me Hooked

Posted in Album Review, alternative rock bands, alternative rock music, alternative rock music albums, collecting rock music, cool album covers, creepy album covers, current alternative rock music, current hard rock albums, current hard rock bands, current hard rock music, current hard rock songs, current heavy metal music, current rock albums 2009, diverse metal music, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, gothic hard rock bands, gothic hard rock music, gothic metal bands, gothic metal music, hard rock music, hard rock music 2009, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, heavy metal vocalists, horror metal, melodic hard rock songs, melodic rock bands, melodic rock songs, metal odyssey, Music, rock & roll, rock album review, rock and roll, rock music, rock music reviews, rock music vocals, rock vocalists, scary album covers, shopping for music, spooky album covers, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 19, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Dommin - Group Photo banner 2009

I picked up the Dommin E.P. at Hot Topic today and man, this band has me hooked. This Dommin E.P. has been available as a Hot Topic exclusive since July 7, 2009. This band caught my attention over the last few months as I scoured the web looking for new and cool albums to potentially buy. Buying this E.P. was a necessity for me, I have already listened to some of Dommin’s songs already and really liked what I heard. Plus this E.P. will make for a cool prelude to my finally picking up the new album from Dommin – Love Is Gone. The price I paid for E.P. is unreal great – $1.99. Uh, again, that’s $1.99! My copy I bought was the last one, (or only one), left in this specific Hot Topic store… that tells me E.P. sold quite well since July 7th. The price and obvious popularity is not too shabby for a brand new CD with four outstanding songs. E.P. contains a track that is not found on the Love Is Gone album – Awake. I have always been open minded to all Rock, Hard Rock and Metal genres, listening to a bountiful mix of bands over the decades has been my Metal way. With that said, this is how I describe the music of Dommin, in my Metal opinion:

Dommin - "Eyes" Banner - 2009

The vocals of Kristofer Dommin are extremely confident and powerful. His vocals alone are what draws me into the music, I am not ashamed to say that they are riveting… for me. When I listen to Kristofer Dommin sing, my ears detect some Glenn Danzig meets David Bowie – really. This is not to say that his vocals are unoriginal, not in the least. Kristofer Dommin’s vocals are very different from what I have been listening to in recent memory. I will confidently state, it is hard to pigeonhole Dommin into one specific music genre. Gothic, Heavy Alternative, Rock, Hard Rock, Melodic Goth or Modern Heavy Metal genres are all represented quite amazingly well with the music of Dommin. If that causes a stir, so be it… this band has been a tough Metal cookie for me to pinpoint with accuracy as to their specific placement in genre. Yet this is what makes Dommin so damn cool from the start, does it really matter anyways which genre a band adheres to? Take it from me, (if you want to), that Dommin belongs in the Heavy Music world with their dark, hard and artistic style of music. Heavy Music this outrageously melodic and hard gets me listening. Dommin takes Rock simplicity from decades past and elevates it into their very own Heavy and dark stratosphere of interpretation, exposing it for all to hear in 2009.

DOMMIN is:

Kristofer Dommin on vocals & guitar

Billy James on bass

Konstantine on keyboards

Cameron Morris on drums

** Track Listing For E.P. is:

My Heart, Your Hands

Dark Holiday

Without End

Awake – (only available on E.P., not included on Love Is Gone album)

DOMMIN is on a record label that in my Metal opinion, knows something about Rock and Roll… ROADRUNNER Records.

DOMMIN - "E.P." album pic

Charm City Devils “Let’s Rock-N-Roll” – A Charming Hard Rock Album

Posted in Album Review, baltimore hard rock bands, collecting rock music, cool album covers, current hard rock albums, current hard rock bands, current hard rock music, current hard rock songs, current rock albums 2009, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock albums 2009, hard rock bands 2009, hard rock drummers, hard rock guitarists, hard rock music, hard rock music 2009, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, heavy metal music, independent record labels, melodic rock bands, metal odyssey, Music, new hard rock album, old school hard rock, Rock, rock & roll, rock album review, rock and roll, rock music, rock music reviews, rock vocalists with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 18, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Charm City Devils "Let's Rock N Roll" large album picI picked up my copy of Charm City Devils – Let’s Rock-N-Roll this past Summer, it was towards the end of July. On July 10, my mother passed away, she was as splendid, caring, giving and loving as a mother could possibly be for me. I received the news of her passing from my father… over the cell phone. We, (my wife and I with our twin daughters), were on our way to Connecticut by car with my courageous wife driving when this tragic news was conveyed to me by my father. We live in Pennsylvania, a solid three and a half hours away from our parents and relatives. The shock and sadness we all felt in the car at that moment can not be expressed in words here. Why I am telling this story is due to the Charm City Devils song Almost Home. You see, upon my first listen to Almost Home, I felt instant sadness, goose bumps formed all over my body and my thoughts instantly were directed to that awful moment in time – of receiving my fathers phone call about my own mothers passing away. It was only a couple of weeks after losing my mother that I first listened to this song.

I had not listened to Almost Home again until today, October 17, 2009. (I just could not bring myself to listening to this song again right away, I needed time to heal, so to speak). The emotional feeling of sadness still erupts within me when I listened to this song again, however, Almost Home actually has now helped me deal with my very own personal experience. It feels good to get this off of my chest… this is a perfect example of how Hard Rock Music or any music for that matter, can connect with you on such a deeply personal level. If this song is to be a true story, connected to any member of Charm City Devils, then I express my deepest sympathy to that person who experienced that phone call too. The lyrics of Almost Home are just too deep and emotional to be fiction.

Alright, now for the cool and Hard Rockin’ part of this album. I will start with stating that the first three songs come out of the Hard Rock gates with the sincerest of enthusiasm and energy. Very memorable are these songs, sing-a-longs if you will. Let’s Rock-N-Roll (Endless Road), House Fire and 10,000 Miles have all the sound and flavor of a hungry up and coming Hard Rock Band. The youthful energy I hear is a kick to my butt to stay in shape and think and act young! (Within reason of course). Best Of the Worst is a mid-paced ballad that sounds like the hit to me, a very commercial sounding song that won’t hurt this bands career. I am a ballad frowner my whole life, still this song has an almost uplifting sensory feel about it. Money has a Punk Rock vibe happening, especially with the rhythm section and arguably with the vocals as well… very cool song for me.

By me stating that Let’s Rock-N-Roll is a charming album, I am not trying to sound sappy, cute or funny here. I really mean it, this is a damn decent – Rock and Roll meets Hard Rock album here. A viable nod to Old School Hard Rock has been established, with Charm City Devils first album. Based on what I here from this album, Charm City Devils can use that old cliche and say the Hard Rock sky is the limit. There is heaping pounds of Hard Rock potential for Charm City Devils to get even better… and they already are quite the Hard Rock band on the rise. Heck, if Bon Jovi could become a household name writing and playing this kind of music, then why not Charm City Devils? I also like to compare this band to Airbourne, although I hear more diversity in song from Charm City Devils which is admirable. At the end of my Metal day, I concede that Let’s Rock-N-Roll is an album worth catching onto and Charm City Devils is a Hard Rock Band worth keeping an eye on.

* Let’s Rock-N-Roll was released on May 26, 2009, on Tenth Street Entertainment/Eleven Seven Music. * Eleven Seven Music has as it’s label president, the legendary Nikki Sixx.

* Charm City Devils hail from the Charm City itself – Baltimore, Maryland.

Charm City Devils as they appear on Let’s Rock-N-Roll:

John Allen – lead vocalist

Vic Karrera – guitar

Anthony Arambula – bass

Nick Kay – guitar

Jason Heiser – drums

Charm City Devils "Let's Rock n Roll" x-large album pic

DRIVIN N CRYIN – 1993 ALBUM “SMOKE” IS HARD ROCK BLISS

Posted in 1980's rock music, 1980's hard rock bands, 1990's classic rock albums, 1990's classic rock music, 1990's college music, 1990's hard rock music, 1990's rock bands, 1990's rock music, 1990's hard rock albums, 1990's hard rock bands, Album Review, classic hard rock bands, classic rock, classic rock album finds, classic rock albums, classic rock bands, classic rock music, classic rock songs, classic rock vocalists, collecting classic rock, collecting rock music, current hard rock bands, essential classic rock albums, essential classic rock songs, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, feel good stories, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock bands from georgia, hard rock drummers, hard rock guitarists, hard rock music, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, metal odyssey, Music, old school hard rock, rock & roll, rock album review, rock and roll, rock music, rock vocalists with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 16, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Drivin N Cryin "Smoke" small album picThere are those select few bands, select few albums throughout my life that I have listened to, that I can say – resonates with me. Drivin N Cryin is one of those bands and their 1993 album – Smoke, (on Island Records). I confess, I never owned a copy of Smoke until October 14, 2009. Unbelievable, how great Rock Music can slip by you. I have vindicated this slip-up by now taking ownership of this great album… finding it on CD during one of my many thrift store Hard Rock and Metal hunts. Rock diversity is a strong point with Drivin N Cryin, their talent to create credible and memorable songs are sensationally a musical characteristic. Smoke is a Rock meets Hard Rock album that even upon it’s initial 1993 release, can be construed as a throwback – to the days when writing Rock songs wasn’t about a race to the commercial finish line. After three consecutive and thorough listens to Smoke on Wednesday, all I could think about that night was listening to Smoke on Thursday! For me, this album is that good… I mean great.

Drivin N Cryin does bring back a very cool Rock memory for me. I saw Drivin N Cryin open up for the ultra legendary – The Who. This concert was at the Meadows Music Theater in Hartford, Connecticut, I think the year was around 1997. (Heck, I cannot remember the exact year). My wife and best buddy Scott were with me for this unreal great night of Rock and Roll. We did not know upon entering this outdoor amphitheater that Drivin N Cryin were opening for The Who that night… we were beyond thrilled when Drivin N Cryin hit the stage, they were simply put – tremendous. I will always remember that night, for Metal sakes, it was The Who taking center stage after all! However, Drivin N Cryin was the Hard Rock bonus that was so unexpected that evening… an unbelievable bonus it was!

Drivin N Cryin "Smoke" small album picThere is no hiding from the fact that I uphold Metal Music and I am a Metalhead, with that said, I also uphold quality Rock and Hard Rock Music as well. Drivin N Cryin enables me to embrace their songs through their vivid musicianship and clarity of their lyrics. With Smoke, there are no illusions going on, no flamboyant and over the ropes attitudes to be heard, just straight -up Rock Music that hits home for me. The first three songs, Back Against The Wall, She Doesn’t Wanna Go and Smoke on Smoke are a 1-2-3 Hard Rock can of whoop ass. 1000 Swings and 1988 are by far cool Rockers as well. Whiskey Soul Woman is just one incredible Rock song to cruise to, it has a Classic Rock vibe swirling all around. When You Come Back is a laid back, Blues Rockin’ song that shows just how diverse Drivin N Cryin can be with Rock. Patron Lady Beautiful can be justified as an epic Rock song for Drivin N Cryin, at 7:36 it plays out with the Rock mellowness that I need to hear every so often and takes it’s twists and turns with Hard Rock heaviness – in real Classic Rock style. What’s The Difference and Eastern European Carny Man has some Tom Petty influence happening, both vocally and musically, not a bad influence for my ears to hear at all.

My favorite song on Smoke, (if I am forced to choose), has to be Turn It Up Or Turn It Off… this is a Hard Rock Classic for me, man these guys jam on this song. There is a hidden track on Smoke, right after the last song, therefore there are really thirteen songs on this album. This hidden song has Classic Rock oozing from it’s every crevice, with the guitars giving way to 1970’s style licks that are beyond cool for me. When it is all said and done, quality Rock musicianship and vocals will always save the day and stay relevant for decades on end. Drivin N Cryin is just this band, extremely credible song writing and musicianship and Rockin’ to this very day. I really dig the vocals of Kevin Kinney, he is at his unreal best on Smoke. I most highly recommend Drivin N Cryin and all of their music to any fan of Rock, Classic Rock and Hard Rock. Smoke turned out to be a hidden Rock gem for me, sending me off to Hard Rock bliss.

* I have not seen this CD for sale on Best Buy online, I have seen it for sale at Amazon.com, as recent as today.

Drivin N Cryin as they appeared on Smoke:

Kevin Kinney – vocals and guitar

Tim Nielsen – bass

Jeff Sullivan – drums

Buren Fowler – lead guitar

DRIVIN N CRYIN "SMOKE" X-LARGE ALBUM PIC

ACE FREHLEY IS BACK! “ANOMALY” ALBUM IS PROOF BY QUANTUM LEAPS!

Posted in 1970's classic rock bands, 1970's hard rock bands, 1970's heavy metal, 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's classic rock guitarists, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1990's heavy metal bands, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic heavy metal, classic rock, classic rock music, collecting music, cool album covers, cover songs, current hard rock albums, current heavy metal albums, current rock albums 2009, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, essential rock albums, guitar legends, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock music 2009, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal cover songs, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal solo albums, heavy metal solo artists, heavy metal solo vocalists, heavy metal songs 2009, Metal, metal odyssey, Music, old school hard rock, old school heavy metal, rock and roll, rock guitarists, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 24, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Ace Frehley "Anomaly" small album picAce Frehley has waited a long time to create and produce a new album, Anomaly is so incredibly worth the wait. I finally bought Anomaly today, (September 23, ’09, yeah, I am a week late from it’s release date), what an album of 12 songs. An unreal good album, a can’t miss for any fan of any Rock genre. I cannot stop listening to this new Ace Frehley album, oh darn. Anomaly for me, is one of those albums that I get contagious about and addicted to… oh darn. Before buying this album, I had not a clue as to what any of the songs sounded like. Man, what an incredible surprise to hear these songs for the first time… this album leans more towards Ace Frehley’s 1978 KISS solo album – not towards the sound of his Frehley’s Comet band from the late 1980’s. The Metal kicker is this… Anomaly rocks harder and heavier than the Ace Frehley 1978 KISS solo album, my ears cannot tell a lie. Where Anomaly gives a nod to 1978 is this: Old School Hard Rock and Heavy Metal. With that being said, Anomaly definitely embodies the grooves and heaviness of today’s Heavy Metal sound, while veering away from any resemblance of late 1980’s commercial heavy sound that was so popular in it’s day.

Ace Frehley - KISS solo pic smallAs I listen to Ace Frehley play guitar throughout Anomaly, all I can say to those who want to listen is this – Ace Frehley is back!! Ace Frehley shall remind the Rock and Roll world with all of it’s genres that yes, he can play guitar very well… and sing too. Ace Frehley’s vocals do not sound like a man who has been out of the recording studio for so many years, instead, it is my Metal opinion that Ace Frehley’s vocals are damn good and cool. Just listening to Anomaly takes me back to the days when quality songs were an important staple to Hard Rock and Heavy Metal bands. A sense of urgency to be real, is what I hear through the entirety of Anomaly, Ace Frehley has fused his very own Hard Rock and Heavy Metal sound with a nod to yesteryear, making Anomaly an album that far extends any relevance factor. From the song writing to the band backing up Ace Frehley here, this is a total album package. Ace Frehley has plenty of cool and damn good solo’s throughout this entire album, one of the many quality points of Anomaly.

I have been a KISS fan since the late ’70’s, I guess once you follow a pack of musicians throughout your entire life you feel lucky that they are still around and making music. Honestly, this Anomaly album is genuine, I wouldn’t just settle for liking an album because of it’s past KISS association. Here are my top choices for songs on Anomaly: Genghis Khan, Space Bear, Fractured Quantum and Fox On The Run. (I could list more, yet I have made my Metal point already). Genghis Khan Rocks out at 6:08, the rhythm section introduces this song in pumped up heavy fashion, just a tremendous song overall. Space Bear and Fractured Quantum are the two instrumentals, two songs that justify Ace Frehley as the brilliant guitar player he is, not to mention songwriter. Fox On The Run is a cover of the 1974 Sweet song, from their Desolation Boulevard album. What a blast of Rock this Ace Frehley version of Fox On The Run is, a fabulous cover version. Alright, here are a couple more standouts for me – It’s A Great Life is a Hard Rock song that takes me straight down Old School memory lane, with straight up lyrics to compliment it. A Little Below The Angels is a self reflective song by Ace Frehley, in my Metal opinion, a very cool song that is straight from the heart. In Metal summary, I give a boisterous yeah! Ace Frehley is back!!

Here are some Ace Frehley notes to enrich your Metal mind:

With the exception of Fox On The Run, Ace Frehley wrote every song on Anomaly, as well as producing the album. 

Anton Fig is the drummer on nine out of the twelve songs on Anomaly.

On the back cover of the Anomaly CD jacket sleeve, there reads: … And In Memory Of Eric Carr & Dimebag Darrell. This type of dedication to late friends, shows that Ace Frehley is a class act.

The CD digipak for Anomaly is die-cut with 5 sides, instructions are enclosed to build this packaging into a three dimensional pyramid. The album cover art concept and design is by Ace Frehley.

Be sure to check out Ace Frehley’s official website… it is really cool. http://www.acefrehley.com/

Ace Frehley "Anomaly" large album pic

THE LAW – Paul Rodgers and Kenney Jones 1991 album revisited

Posted in 1990's hard rock music, 1990's rock music, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic hard rock bands, classic hard rock music, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock albums 1991, classic rock bands, classic rock music, classic rock songs, classic rock vocalists, collecting classic rock, collecting rock music, everyday experiences, family, feel good stories, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock drummers, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, metal odyssey, Music, old school hard rock, Rock, rock album review, rock album reviews, rock music, rock music vocals, rock vocalists, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 7, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

The Law - small album photoOn Saturday, of this 2009 Labor Day Weekend, I set out on a trip to buy back to school necessities for my daughters. The local mall, which is only minutes away, provides for a cool stroll… an f.y.e. is located inside. (Yessssss!). As my daughters and wife are perusing the kids sneakers, all I kept thinking was… what is currently hiding in the batch of used CD’s over at f.y.e.? The trip to this particular mall proved to be very worthwhile, no sneakers were found that my daughter liked, however, we had some fine pizza slices for lunch while we were there, plus I found The Law. The debut album The Law was nestled within the many used CD titles for sale at f.y.e.. With my f.y.e. Backstage Pass Platinum store card, the final price I paid for The Law used CD was $2.81… amazing. Not a bad price to pay for one of the most underrated Rock/Hard Rock albums I have ever listened to. I really get a kick sometimes out of what I will find in the selection of used CD’s at f.y.e., I have scored some real cool used CD’s at f.y.e. over the past few years. Upon leaving this mall, my wife did not hesitate for a second, in getting The Law into the car’s CD player… the family and I listened to this CD in it’s entirety as we continued on our quest for back to school sneakers.

I bought The Law on cassette tape back in 1991 and still have it to this day, an upgrade to CD was long overdue. The Law was released on March 19, 1991, I instantly knew I would purchase this album back then, due to my admiration for Paul Rodgers with his Rock-cool and legendary vocals. Plus, I always immensely enjoyed Bad Company, Free and The Firm… whatever band Paul Rodgers fronted, I was listening to. My favorite song from this album is Laying Down The Law, it is a solid Hard Rock song that ripples with a tough vibe and reminiscent of Bad Company… in my Metal opinion. Paul Rodgers wrote and even plays the piano on Laying Down The Law. Overall, this is not the greatest album or band/project that Paul Rodgers was a part of, still I like The Law enough to recommend to anyone into quality Rock, Hard Rock or Classic Rock music. This album had it’s share of song writers and guest musicians, yet the end result are eleven songs that possess the Classic Rock sound that hooks me each time I listen. Paul Rodgers on vocals with The Law is the main reason why I like this album. Kenney Jones on drums, (Small FacesFaces and The Who), is another valid reason why I will always look back at this band and album with the upmost respect.

The way I see it, you have to listen to bands and albums that you like, regardless of how successful the respective album was/is on the charts or mainstream radio. Album sales never have determined for me, the quality of a band or album, I shall never be swayed by mainstream Rock critics or here-say. The Law is a prime example of record sales not being impressive and a band short lived. Do I care? No. It’s what I like that matters most and I would not recommend this album if I thought it to be a stinker.

The Law notable guest musicians and/or song writers:

Phil Collen (lead guitarist for Def Leppard), wrote Miss You In A Heartbeat for The Law and later recorded by Def Leppard for their Retrospective album. The ever legendary David Gilmour plays guitar on the song Stone. Chris Rea also plays guitar on the song StoneBryan Adams cowrote and plays guitar on Nature of the Beast.

The Law - large album photo

BLUE OYSTER CULT – “Fire Of Unknown Origin”, 1981 album is a Rock Classic

Posted in 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's hard rock albums, 1980's heavy metal albums, 1980's heavy metal hits, 1980's popular rock bands, 1980's rock albums, 1980's rock music, 1980's classic rock, 1980's classic rock music, 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's heavy metal songs, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic hard rock bands, classic hard rock music, classic heavy metal albums, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock bands, classic rock music, classic rock songs, cool album covers, essential classic rock albums, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal music, heavy metal vocalists, metal odyssey, Music, old school hard rock, old school heavy metal, Rock, rock music, rock music vocals, rock vocalists, vintage hard rock albums, vintage heavy metal albums, vintage heavy metal bands, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 27, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Blue Oyster Cult "Fire of Unknown Origin" small picBlue Oyster Cult released “Fire Of Unknown Origin” in 1981, which was perfect timing for me. I already had Kiss, Foreigner, Cheap Trick, Queen, Ozzy Osbourne, AC/DC and Bad Company in my system back then, being wowed by Blue Oyster Cult was my ears next step in branching out into the Heavy Music world. Back in 1981, there was the choice of buying music on 8 track, I bought “Fire Of Unknown Origin” on this medium – thank you very much. (I no longer have this 8 track from yesteryear, the 8 track player is a memory as well). This album is just another example of what melded my Metal and Hard Rock Music tastes at a young age, (I was fifteen years old in 1981). Another stepping stone album, if you will, towards the lifetime of Metal and Hard Rock Music adoration that I behold. In my Metal opinion, this BOC album is an early 1980’s Heavy Metal meets Hard Rock album, that has consistently lured me back for many a listen over the years.

I always appreciated the lead vocals of Eric Bloom. The mellowness that carpets his vocals is a signature sound of BOC. The biggest hit from “Fire Of Unknown Origin” was “Burnin’ For You”, where the vocals of Eric Bloom and the semi-heaviness of the music really compliment one another. This song was a mainstream FM radio favorite for years, one of my favorite Hard Rock songs ever. “Joan Crawford”, “Heavy Metal: The Black and Silver” and “Fire Of Unknown Origin” are three other songs from this album that I could never get enough of. I have always liked this entire album, “Fire Of Unknown Origin” comes highly recommended from me to younger and new fans of BOC and/or Classic Rock. This is one of those times where I honestly state, this is just a great album of Hard Rock and heavy songs, a true classic.

Blue Oyster Cult "Fire of Unknown Origin" large pic

JOE SATRIANI “Surfing With The Alien” – My music of choice for today and many days to come

Posted in 1980's classic rock guitarists, 1980's hard rock albums, 1980's heavy metal albums, 1980's instrumental rock albums, 1980's rock albums, 1980's rock music, 1980's classic rock, 1980's classic rock music, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic hard rock music, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock music, classic rock songs, cool album covers, essential classic rock albums, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, essential rock albums, Guitar, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal solo albums, heavy metal solo artists, instrumental guitar rock albums, Music, old school hard rock, old school heavy metal, Rock, rock guitarists, rock music, vintage hard rock albums, vintage heavy metal albums, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 26, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150I listened to Joe Satriani “Surfing With The Alien” all day today… in the car, in the house and back in the car once again. (Released in 1987, I own both the vinyl LP and CD). I have those days, where I choose that one CD and listen to it the entire day. Joe Satriani is without question, one of my favorite guitarists that ever lived. Pinning down who my favorite guitarist is of all time is too impossible of a task – there are just way too many guitarists across the entire Rock and Heavy Music spectrum that I revere. It’s not that I do not want to get controversial about naming an all time favorite guitarist, I named what I feel is the greatest Metal album of all time, in a previous post – (Black Sabbath, “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath”). There are just so many unique styles of playing out there, in the world of guitarists, I tend to draw from a cornucopia of these styles and enjoy what I hear from a vast array of players. Joe Satriani really nails it down, with pin point accuracy, on this album. Combining speed and clarity, while slowing things down at all the right moments, makes for a harmonious and melodic guitar instrumental experience, is the best quick summary for Joe Satriani on “Surfing With The Alien”. The daunting question of: Is Joe Satriani a Rock, Hard Rock or Heavy Metal guitarist? – can only be answered by stating Joe Satriani can play it all and play it with greatness. The catalog of albums that Joe Satriani has created over the years proves just that, the proof is in his music.

When I listened to “Surfing With The Alien” today, I never stopped to think about what these songs would be like if lyrics were to be put into the mix. (I am thinking it now, though). That is what a great guitar instrumental album will do for me, the focal point is the guitar brilliance of Joe Satriani, no vocals are necessary. The guitar play of Joe Satriani is what speaks, in essence, that is what it should do. I have always equated a great guitar player, as a musician who can make me hear and feel the emotion that erupts from the notes and chords they play. At 1:46, “Hill Of The Skull” may be one of the shortest songs on this album, yet this is the one that overflows the most emotional feeling – for me. Surfing With The Alien” is hands down, the most popular and fastest song from this album, a quick fix for getting back on my feet and body slamming any negative thoughts in my brain. If I had to describe this album in just two words, they would be: groove saturated. “Always With Me, Always With You” and “Echo” are not just crossover songs to lure the easy listening crowd into the outskirts of Heavy Music, these are songs that encapsulate the upbeat harmony and instinctive music writing genius of Joe Satriani.

My favorite song on “Surfing With The Alien” is Ice 9″. Oh man, do I really like this song. By process of elimination, there is going to be the one song out of the ten found here, that sends it straight through me.“Satch Boogie” is a song that reels me in as well, it shows just how dynamic Joe Satriani had become as a player, on just his second album release. Listening to just this CD today really did make my day that much better. It is not that often that I will listen to only one CD for an entire day… this has definitely been an exercise in Metal constraint for me. To not slap in some Death Metal, Black Metal or straight up Heavy Metal within today’s routine, only justifies how much I really enjoy this album and Joe Satriani’s guitar. Tomorrow I will go back to my daily mix of Metal listening, still I guarantee that I will crank up “Ice 9” once again.

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FOREIGNER “Double Vision” – a Classic Hard Rock album revisited

Posted in 1970's classic rock albums, 1970's classic rock bands, 1970's classic rock songs, 1970's hard rock bands, 1970's classic rock music, 1970's hard rock, 1970's Rock, 1970's rock music, 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's rock music, 1980's classic rock music, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic hard rock bands, classic hard rock music, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock bands, classic rock music, essential classic rock albums, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, Music, old school hard rock, Rock, rock album reviews, rock and roll, rock music, rock vocalists, vintage hard rock albums, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 24, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150Foreigner, a Hard Rock band that opened the doors to the world of Heavy Music for me. Double Vision”, an album that I consider to be one of the greatest Rock or Hard Rock albums ever created. On June 20, 1978, “Double Vision” was released. On January 26, 1979, I received this revered album as a birthday gift from my late mother. I was able to choose an album, just one album, on a trip to the Caldor department store… Foreigner “Double Vision” was my choice, on that birthday. Each year that passes by, these fond memories only grow stronger. Man, if I was to say I have listened to this album more times than any other album, it would not be a stretch. Back in 1979, I was only listening to a handful of Hard Rock bands that would eventually guide me into evolving into the Metal Music loyalist that I am today. I was thirteen years old and completely blown away by this album and band… I listened to every lyric, every chord, every note, that erupted from these songs. Foreigner was actually teaching me, at this very young age, that Hard Rock music this enormous could and would make my life enjoyable. I continue to reflect, to revisit often, the bands and albums that molded my heavy music tastes. 

From the very first listen to “Double Vision” until this very day, I honestly would choose “Blue Morning, Blue Day” as my favorite song from this album. I completely reject any notion that this song is a ballad. In my Metal opinion, Lou Gramm was at his most impeccable, vocally, on this song. My second favorite song from this classic album is a clear choice… the instrumental “Tramontane”. Whoa, when I first listened to “Tramontane”, it was my introduction to what a Rock instrumental really was and really sounded like. I realized then, at thirteen years old, that Rock and Hard Rock music did not always need lyrics to sound amazing. “Hot Blooded” and “Double Vision” are the two super hit singles from this album that literally sent psyched up – shock waves throughout my entire body. Here I was, only a few years removed from listening to a dozen or so 45 rpm’s that were my mom’s from her teen years… I went from Buddy Holly and The Everly Brothers, straight to the Hard Rock strength of Foreigner. Back in 1979, at age thirteen, this was one thrilling Rock Music leap for me. In 1979, Foreigner joined Kiss and Cheap Trick to round out my big three heavy bands that I was so ecstatic over. Queen and Bad Company were right behind them… trust me when I say that once 1980 rolled around, I was in a Hard Rock and Heavy Metal whirlwind of wonder.

Once “Double Vision” was locked into my system, I needed more Foreigner… so I delved into their debut album by buying it in the Summer of 1979. “Head Games” was released in 1979, with “4” coming out in 1981, both of these Foreigner classics I took to as well. When it was all said and done, my winner was and always will be “Double Vision”. The albums Foreigner released after “4” seemed to take off into a different Rock direction, I never could grasp onto any Foreigner ballads. I was already too spoiled by the first two Foreigner albums to really embrace any Pop Music ballads that they made so hugely popular in the mid to late 1980’s. As I look back now, it is the “Double Vision” album that is really Foreigner, this is one of the albums that took hold of a thirteen year old back in 1979 and set him straight on a life long path of Heavy Music listening bliss. I have absolutely no regrets, just a ton of Metal gratitude to Foreigner.

Foreigner, as they appeared on “Double Vision”: Mick Jones on guitar, Lou Gramm on lead vocals, Ian McDonald on guitar & keyboard, Al Greenwood on synthesizer & keyboard, Ed Gagliardi on bass and Dennis Elliott on drums.

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DEEP PURPLE – “Deepest Purple” is a Space Truckin’ ride back to the ’70’s

Posted in 1970's classic rock albums, 1970's classic rock songs, 1970's hard rock bands, 1970's classic rock music, 1970's hard rock, 1970's Rock, 1970's rock music, 1980's hard rock, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic hard rock bands, classic hard rock music, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock bands, classic rock music, cool album covers, essential classic rock albums, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock drummers, hard rock guitarists, hard rock music this decade, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, heavy metal music, Music, old school hard rock, Rock, rock album reviews, rock keyboard musicians, rock music, rock vocalists, vintage hard rock albums, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 16, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150Is it just me thinking this way? Deep Purple “Deepest Purple”, (subtitled “The Very Best of Deep Purple”), is the epitome of what a Rock/Hard Rock Greatest Hits album is supposed to be. These Deep Purple classics are hands down, sensational and historical Rock Music. Gimme a break, how can any generation not want to embrace these songs? These Deep Purple songs are perfect examples of just how amazing the song writing was in Rock and Hard Rock, back in the 1970’s. Could Deep Purple have been ahead of their time? I certainly think so, by at least a decade. The hardness, forget about the heaviness for a second, is what drives these Deep Purple songs to the top tier of  Rock and Hard Rock history, in my Metal opinion. Just stop to think about this, for a Metal second… how many new Rock or Hard Rock bands out there today, could actually put out a Greatest Hits album, down the road, with such impeccable and recognizable songs? “Smoke On The Water” and “Highway Star” are two Hard Rock songs alone, that represent a generation of Rock and Hard Rock music and the decade of the 1970’s. “Fireball” and “Child In Time” are just the icing on the Hard Rock cake here.

Certainly, I am not going to argue the clear fact that we had genre and decade defining Rock and Hard Rock groups during the 1970’s such as The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Queen, ELO, Yes, Boston, Moody Blues, The Doors, Molly Hatchet, Bad Company, Kansas, Aerosmith, ZZ Top, Pink Floyd, AC/DC (Bon Scott era), Lynyrd Skynyrd and Ted Nugent. The list of iconic Rock and Hard Rock bands from the 1970’s is huge. You betcha. Of course I missed mentioning some well deserved bands and solo musicians here… this post would be gigantic if I was to make a master list. My point I am making is this… there was Deep Purple, man, and they rocked liked no tomorrow during the decade of the ’70’s – “Deepest Purple” is sound Rock and Hard Rock proof of that. If a time machine really did exist and I could rent one, (I am certain that I would not be able to afford to buy one), I would get on that Rock and Roll mother ship and take a ride to a vintage Deep Purple concert back in the 1970’s. (I am positive that Connecticut would have one hefty and major time machine tax, Senator Christopher Dodd would be all over that one – if a time machine existed).

Back to Deep Purple… I could not complain about which lead singer would be fronting this legendary band… if I was to go back in time to see them in concert, it is pick ’em at lead singer  –  for all I care! David Coverdale, Ian Gillain, Glenn Hughes or Tommy Bolin as lead singer… it would not matter, I would be cheering on this 1970’s version of Deep Purple like a psyched out, Hard Rockin’, “Space Truckin” fan! Aw heck, throw in the late 1960’s lead singer Rod Evans for good measure too, he counts. I am not by any shape or form, taking away the great Hard Rock achievements of the Deep Purple lineups of the 1980’s through present day, no way. This Deep Purple music dynasty is special, an undisputed Hard Rockin’ franchise. I just have that Rock and Roll fantasy once in awhile, this whole time machine journey to see Deep Purple in the ’70’s is one. So, the next time you hear, “Woman From Tokyo”, “Burn” and “Stormbringer”, not to mention the other great hits of Deep Purple, earlier mentioned, just remember when they were written… these songs epitomize the label of – timeless. “Space Truckin'”… ’nuff said.

I tip my Metal Music hat to all the past and present musicians of Deep Purple, especially Ritchie Blackmore on guitar, Jon Lord on keyboards, Roger Glover on bass guitar, Joe Lynn Turner on lead vocals, Nick Simper on bass guitar, Joe Satriani on lead guitar and Ian Paice on drums. I thank Don Airey on keyboards and Steve Morse on guitar for keeping the Deep Purple – Hard Rock machine turnin’ and churnin’ to this day. If it wasn’t for Deep Purple, Metal Music as we know it today, probably would not sound so cool. That… is my Metal opinion.

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Rainbow – “Bent Out Of Shape” 1983 album revisited

Posted in 1980's hard rock albums, 1980's heavy metal albums, 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's heavy metal songs, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic hard rock music, classic heavy metal albums, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock music, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, Heavy Metal Reviews, Music, old school heavy metal, rock music, rock vocalists, vintage hard rock albums, vintage heavy metal albums, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 23, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Rainbow "Bent Out Of Shape" small picRainbow was and still is one of the Hard Rock/Heavy Metal bands that I look upon with Metal reverence. The song writing, lyrics, musicianship, melodies, well, I could go on forever about why I have liked this band so much. Guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, in my Metal opinion, is a guitar legend, both with Deep Purple and Rainbow. Ritchie Blackmore collaborated with lead vocalist Joe Lynn Turner on a few releases, back in the 1980’s. “Bent Out Of Shape” is one of those albums they created, writing nine out of the ten songs together. “Bent Out Of Shape” can be taken as a commercial Hard Rock statement, only It is difficult for me to define this album as such. My standards for commercial Rock or Hard Rock/Heavy Metal definitely differ from other peoples standards. I need to hear consistent sappy ballads and/or radio – bubble gum – friendly songs before my stamp of commercialism is placed on an album. In other words, I feel “Bent Out Of Shape” is one mighty, melodic, Hard Rock album. Honestly, I have no problem with labeling “Bent Out Of Shape” as a Heavy Metal album. This album was released in 1983, the heaviness of Rainbow for back then, easily gave this band the label of Heavy Metal.

“Snowman” is the lone song that was not co-written by Joe Lynn Turner. This song is an instrumental, written by Ritchie Blackmore and Howard Blake. This song has a yearning feeling to it, an almost dream like atmosphere as well, I have always gravitated to it over the years. “Street Of Dreams” was the hit song from this album, plenty of FM radio play it used to receive as well. This song is very melodic, the keyboards play an integral musical role on this track. “Desperate Heart” is quite similar in style, to that of “Street Of Dreams”… both with melody and tempo. “Drinking With The Devil” is my pick for the heaviest song on this album, it has some cool edginess to it, with Joe Lynn Turner adding some tough attitude vocally. “Can’t Let You Go” is another notable song, tailor made for Joe Lynn Turner’s vocals. This song as with “Desperate Heart” and “Street Of Dreams” seems to fit the soul searching theme that I interpret from the lyrics. 

Overall, “Bent Out Of Shape” carries on the signature sound of Rainbow, with rich and vibrant keyboards courtesy of David Rosenthal and of course, the guitar play of Ritchie Blackmore. Joe Lynn Turner has the velvet vocals of Hard Rock/Heavy Metal, he continues to release some quality solo albums to this day. If I had to pick which version of Rainbow that I like best, of course I would choose the Ronnie James Dio fronted Rainbow. With that opinion aside, the Joe Lynn Turner era of Rainbow was and still is quite cool for me. I never can resist buying any music that Joe Lynn Turner has his vocals on, there is no doubt in my mind, that he has had an impressive career. For my taste, “Bent Out Of Shape” has not lost any of its Heavy Rock luster, as years pass. If anything, I still appreciate the quality of all of these songs on this album. In my Metal opinion, this Rainbow album is light years better than a good percentage of new Hard Rock music you hear on the radio or internet today.

Rainbow, as they appeared on “Bent Out Of Shape”: Ritchie Blackmore on guitars, Joe Lynn Turner on vocals, Roger Glover on bass and percussion, David Rosenthal on keyboards and Chuck Burgi on drums. “Bent Out Of Shape” was produced by Roger Glover.

Rainbow "Bent Out Of Shape" large pic

38 Special “Rockin’ Into The Night” – 1980 album keeps Rockin’

Posted in 1970's southern rock music, 1970's hard rock, 1970's Rock, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic hard rock music, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock music, classic southern rock, cool album covers, essential hard rock albums, essential southern rock albums, hard rock vocalists, Music, old school southern rock music, Rock, rock album reviews, rock music, rock music vocals, rock vocalists, southern hard rock, southern hard rock albums, southern rock, southern rock 1979, southern rock albums, southern rock music, southern rock music legends, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 19, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150Back in 1980, I was enthralled by 38 Special. That year, I went to the Caldor Department Store and bought the 45 rpm of the hit single – “Rockin’ Into The Night”. I was in eighth grade with not too much cash in my pocket, still I always held onto enough dough to buy my 45’s. My parents were on an extremely fixed budget, therefore, I could not coax too many higher priced albums from them back then. That was fine, I was always grateful for what my parents could afford to give me. Besides, I more often than not, earned my records from doing yard work and cleaning up the house. That 38 Special 45 rpm was played by me continuously. “Rockin’ Into The Night” was my song back in 1980, no one else’s, (or so I thought). The truth of the day is, I did not buy the actual album “Rockin’ Into The Night” until decades later. Man, what was I thinking? The 45 rpm I had from 1980 had been worn down from repeated play, eventually tossed away. Yet, as I write this post, this Classic Southern Hard Rock album, (really it is a CD now), is a permanent fixture in my music collection. 

To call this album a gem is not adequate enough. “Rockin’ Into The Night” is a Southern Hard Rock accomplishment that in my opinion, (excuse the clique’), stood the test of time. This is an album that did not even need to have a hit single, all nine songs are true Southern Rock, played hard, with a determined grit and emotion by 38 Special. The liner notes for this album says it all… “This One’s For You Ronnie!”. Ronnie Van Zant, the founder and lead singer for Lynyrd Skynyrd, had passed away in a plane crash, (on October 20, 1977) and 38 Special had dedicated this album to him. Donnie Van Zant is the younger brother of Ronnie, his vocals have always gone straight through me, especially on this album. I always sensed, no matter how many times I listen to this album, that Donnie sang with extra vigor and emotion in dedication to his brother. (This is my interpretation anyways). After all of these years… decades… I still come to the conclusion that “Rockin’ Into The Night” Rocks just as bad ass as it did in 1980. 

You would probably think that “Rockin’ Into The Night” is my favorite song off of this album. Would it be a shock to admit to all, that it is not? After the years have gone by, well, “Turn It On” is actually my favorite track off of this album, with “Rockin’ Into The Night” being a very close second. “Turn It On” just has that right beat that rivets me, the song is upbeat and true Southern Rock. The Southern Rock piano does have a substantial influence over me, especially when it is heard on “Turn It On”.  “Stone Cold Believer”, “Take Me Through The Night” and “You Got The Deal” are for me, as consistent you will ever hear, when it comes to top tier Southern Hard Rock. “Robin Hood” is the instrumental song on this album, I do consider this song as a centerpiece, if you will, for it plays out as one of the finest examples of Southern Rock music as you could ever ask for. “Money Honey” is a song that I have hit the repeat button for without hesitation. This song is just a good old Southern Rocker that spills over with Southern Rock vibe and goodness.

I always like to write about the albums, songs and the bands that create them. I also write about the bands that have made my life memorable, both past and present. 38 Special is one of those bands that has instilled in me, the appreciation for both the quality of the song and quality of the musicianship. 38 Special introduced to me, in 1980, a song that has been with me now for the majority of my life. “Rockin’ Into The Night” will be enjoyed by me for the rest of my years as well. My nine year old twin daughters have given their thumbs up to this album, this solidifies the importance of passing along great music, from legendary bands of the past, to younger generations to enjoy. It makes me feel darn cool and good, when my young twin daughters say they like 38 Special and their upbeat music.

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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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Army Of Anyone – A Hard Rock Band this credible has to make a return

Posted in 1990's hard rock music, Album Review, essential hard rock albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock drummers, hard rock guitarists, hard rock music 2006, hard rock music this decade, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, Music, progressive hard rock music, progressive rock, progressive rock music, Rock, rock album reviews, rock music, rock vocalists with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 29, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Army Of Anyone band picture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Army Of Anyone, the supergroup made up of Dean DeLeo (guitar) and Robert DeLeo (bass, backing vocals) from Stone Temple Pilots, Richard Patrick (lead vocals) from Filter and Ray Luzier (drums) from the David Lee Roth band released a Hard Rock winner, back on November 14, 2006. In my Metal opinion, I wish this band would have stayed together to release many, many, more albums. I purchased the debut CD, self titled “Army Of Anyone”, the first week of it’s release… I have frequently reminded myself that I constantly listen to this band, buy why? Oh, how a Hard Rock album will sound when skillful musicians are at the top of their game, creating a bounty of melodies, mixed together with creatively inspired chords and lead vocals, all fastened together with a rhythm section so tight that the grooves it manifests serves to magnify the progressive musical energy around it. In essence, I really enjoy listening to the Hard Rock music from Army Of Anyone.

I own a Sony 5 CD disc changer, (my wife bought it for me way back in 1990), it has become a permanent component for my stereo system going on twenty years now. It plays fantastic to this very day, (knock on Metal), with extensive and constant usage. This Army Of Anyone CD has been almost permanently inside this Sony disc changer going on three years straight. I say almost, for whenever I take this Army Of Anyone CD out of the disc changer, it usually is not for more than a few days… I have reached the point where it does not feel right unless this CD is in place, ready to be played at a moments notice. Army Of Anyone is that good… no, instead, Army Of Anyone is that great. This band is Hard Rock, yes, only they have put to use their Progressive Hard Rock, musical tentacles… reaching out far beyond what current Hard Rock mainstream bands are currently striving for, musically.

I embrace the music of Army Of Anyone far more greater than the music of Stone Temple Pilots or Filter. (You can throw in the David Lee Roth Band too, that is a no brainer). This is only one album from Army Of Anyone and here I am, staking an extremely higher allegiance to them, than compared to STP or Filter. Honestly, there is no comparison, other than the fact of Dean and Robert DeLeo being members of STP, (the real reason why STP is a musically recognized and popular band in the first place). Plus, throw in the fact that STP regrouped and embarked on touring the past year and Richard Patrick has Filter firing on all cylinders, well, Army Of Anyone has become a musically elite supergroup in limbo. The glory, fame, popularity and record sales of the STP past, seem to far outweigh the Progressive Hard Rock brilliance that illuminates from Army Of Anyone. It is a shame. This is a perfect example of how credible and incredible Hard Rock music can get swept under the popularity carpet, due to decisions made that are beyond the fans control. Musicians and astute fans of any music genre know this: great music cannot be judged on record sales, mainstream radio popularity or tickets sold. Nope. Army Of Anyone just needed a massive marketing machine behind them, as well as no STP reunion, then, just maybe, this band could have skyrocketed into the popularity mix. 

Not to ignore the songs from the debut “Army Of Anyone” album, to summarize the lyrics: intelligent, socially conscious, awareness to world politics without becoming abrasive, add into the mix the human experience. Musically, as mentioned earlier, Hard Rock with a progressive edge, yet not as an afterthought. My favorite song on this album: “This Wasn’t Supposed To Happen” – this is hands down, one of the single greatest endings to a Hard Rock album that I have ever heard. It is a mellow tune, yes, a ballad – no. The acoustic arrangement of this song swelters with emotion that I never expected upon my very first listen. Unbelievable, pure music.

I just hope, that Army Of Anyone would consider getting back together, every few years or so and create a new album. They do not have to do a major world tour for recognition and I understand if STP and Filter are of higher importance. What Dean DeLeo, Robert DeLeo and Richard Patrick must understand is that Army Of Anyone is much more enormous than they may realize, a true and real Hard Rock music creation. It is just like the quote from the fantasy baseball movie “Field Of Dreams” – “build it and they will come”… well, the members of Army Of Anyone have built it, if they could only continue, more fans would come. Probably more than they could ever imagine. 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Cheap Trick "Silver"

Nazareth “Hair Of The Dog” still has the heavy bite

Posted in 1970's hard rock, 1970's heavy metal, 1970's Rock, Album Review, classic metal, classic rock, cool album covers, cover songs, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, 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 & roll, rock music, vintage hard rock albums, vintage heavy metal albums, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 25, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Nazareth “Hair Of The Dog” has always been a monumental standout Hard Rock album for me. This is what I consider a real album with no pretensions, no fancy gimmicks. What you hear on “Hair Of The Dog” is true Classic Hard Rock, no tunes found here are subdued or watered down. Nazareth came up the Hard Rock ladder during the 1970’s, surrounded by Hard Rock icons such as: Bad Company, Queen, Boston, Foreigner, SweetStyx and Cheap Trick. What a fabulous time it was for Hard Rock music! For the Metal record, I always considered Nazareth to be a Hard Rock band, albeit they do have their Heavy Metal musical tendencies. “Hair Of The Dog”, lyrically, is for me, a true stick it to the man – heavy song. “Now your messin’ with a son of a bitch” – these lyrics say it all, my fellow citizens. I can remember so many moments, in my life, where this song has benefited me. Sure, I have been slighted and backstabbed, so have trillions of other people on this planet have as well. “Hair Of The Dog”, when played LOUD, especially after you know you have been jerked around by someone, well, it is the sure fire remedy for feeling vindication.

I remember, uh, reflect, on my High School days… early ’80’s… it was homeroom at 7:45 in the morning, for my first four years of serving time there, “Love Hurts” was played on the school’s radio station, every single day. Yup, every single day. Did I ever grow tired of this song? Nope. It is Nazareth for Metal sakes. I only used to wonder why “Hair Of The Dog” was not played… probably due to it’s lyrical content, the sacred & self righteous school administrators did not want to stir up the masses. I will delve more into the “Love Hurts” tune in the upcoming paragraph, uh, review.

If you are looking for a great, Classic Hard Rock album to buy and cherish, “Hair Of The Dog” should be an easy choice. This album is saturated with Hard Rock. Oozing with bluesy, Hard Rock music and attitude, “Hair Of The Dog” has so much more to offer, with the title track “Hair Of The Dog” being as close of an example to 1970’s Heavy Metal as you can possibly hear. This song revs it up into high gear, kicking off this album on a real high note. “Miss Misery” is a melancholy song that thumps along with a denim and leather flavor, highlighting the raspy vocals of Dan McCafferty. “Love Hurts” is the ballad, the big radio hit for Nazareth then and now. This song is a cover from the Everly Brothers, only this version is hardened around the edges and overflows with pure Rock emotion. “Whiskey Drinkin’ Woman” is a song with a grooving coolness happening, it has that American Southern Rock sound and atmosphere. “Hair Of The Dog” is in my opinion, quite diversified musically. The opening track being very Metal, another track having Southern Rock flavor and a classic 1950’s ballad cover song. “Please Don’t Judas Me” is a lengthy rocker at nearly ten minutes long. I appreciate this song for it’s jamming, it also exemplifies how albums years ago were geared more to the music than to releasing instant commercial hits. Nazareth released a memorable album back in 1975, it should be enjoyed and passed along for all Rock and Hard Rock fans. Heavy Metal fans should embrace this album for its quality musical content and ground floor sound. “Hair Of The Dog” helped shape Heavy Metal in the 1970’s and beyond. This is an album that can never, ever, be forgotten.

Nazareth on “Hair Of The Dog”: Dan McCafferty on vocals, Manny Charlton on guitars & synthesizer, Pete Agnew on bass guitar & backing vocals and Darrell Sweet on drums, percussion & backing vocals. The liner notes do not contain lyrics, it is a fold out with an enlarged scale of the album cover artwork.

Nazareth "Hair Of The Dog"

Black Stone Cherry – a Hard Rock band on a path to greatness

Posted in Album Review, current hard rock albums, current hard rock songs, 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, recent heavy metal albums, Rock, rock & roll, rock and roll, rock music, southern hard rock, southern hard rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 16, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Black Stone Cherry, you better believe I like this band! I always feel reassured when a young Hard Rock or Metal band appears on the scene and shows reverence for old school Classic Rock, Hard Rock and Heavy Metal. With Black Stone Cherry, the reverence is in their music. I can hear it and feel it, the reverence in their first two albums and I am sold. Pick up or find just about any interview from this band, you will find these guys mentioning bands from years/decades gone by with the upmost respect. I personally feel it is the coolest and most admirable quality of any heavy Rock band to recognize the roots of their respective genre. Since the first moment I heard of Black Stone Cherry and with my continuance to follow them through numerous media sources, I have never heard a microscopic ounce of arrogance or self entitlement from them. This attitude will carry Black Stone Cherry to greater heights, for they have the musical talent to achieve their highest goals, in my Metal opinion.

I give Road Runner Records a huge applause for signing Black Stone Cherry in the first place, this record company has a winner here and believe me, they know it. One professionally paid music critic out there recently wrote, that “Black Stone Cherry should stop trying to sound like Nickelback” – this statement proves that there are paid music critics out there that never listen to the bands they write about. Black Stone Cherry sounds nothing like Nickelback, the only two things these two bands have in common are that they are extremely talented musically and they play Hard Rock. (I could never, ever, find it ethical to write about a band or their music without first listening to their stuff, yet unethical music reviews is what we all get handed to us, from mainstream Rock publications these days).

There are just two albums/CD’s out there currently by Black Stone Cherry – give them time, their first release was on July 18, 2006, aptly titled “Black Stone Cherry” with their second release on August 19, 2008 titled “Folklore and Superstition”. Black Stone Cherry blends together almost magically, the genres of Hard Rock, Heavy Metal and Southern Hard Rock. In my Metal opinion, there are no filler tunes on either album. The debut album for me, is the heaviest of the two, with “Folklore and Superstition” reaching out to a more melodic and commercial friendly sound. Having radio friendly tunes on a Hard Rock album does not bother me one bit, especially when the songs are not all sappy ballads. Don’t get me wrong though, “Soul Creek”, “Blind Man” and “Please Come In” off of “Folklore and Superstition” are catchy and melodic, yet these songs still Rock like there is no tomorrow. Great party tune is “Soul Creek” – I find myself bellowing out the lyrics to this song while I play it, almost as if it is uncontrollable.

Uh, yeah, I definitely recommend Black Stone Cherry and both of their albums/CD’s to any fan out there who wants to Rock out to some excellent music from excellent musicians. Here is the lineup for Black Stone Cherry, ‘cuz you just might want to know these dudes names: Chris Robertson on lead vocals, lead/rhythm/slide guitar, Ben Wells on rhythm & lead guitar, electric sitar & backing vocals, Jon Lawhon on lead, rhythm bass & backing vocals and John Fred Young on drums, percussion & backing vocals.

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