Archive for hard rock music

DORO – “25 Years In Rock” Releases December 7, 2010 In North America!

Posted in Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, heavy metal albums, heavy metal concerts, heavy metal news, metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 20, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

DORO – Metal’s “real” Queen is Germany’s Doro Pesch and she is celebrating her 25th Anniversary as such in grand Metal style. 25 Years In Rock… And Still Going Strong will be released on Nuclear Blast in Europe on November 26, 2010 and November 29 in the UK, while a December 7, 2010 release is slated for North America. This amazing DORO package is a 2 DVD/1 CD, featuring the celebration of her 25th Anniversary concert on December 13, 2008, at the ISS Dome in Düsseldorf, Germany, (Doro’s hometown).

Live concert footage includes: Big City Nights and Rock You Like A Hurricane with Klaus Meine and Rudolf Schenker, Always Live To Win with Bobby “Blitz” Ellsworth, Walking With The Angels with Tarja Turunen, True As Steel with Warlock line-up of 1986 and Warrel Dane, All We Are featuring all the guests from this incredible night, plus many more Metal surprises! The total running time is 5 hours on DVD! Whoa… that’s a ton of DORO greatness!

* DVD 1 is live concert footage, while DVD 2 is a documentary with highlights, extras and bonus features.

DORO – 25 Years In Rock Ltd. Edition Double LP Picture Disc, (above). This beauty is being sold directly on Century Media – CM Distro.com. As of November 20th, I’ve seen it as “temporarily out of stock”… so it’s a hot DORO commodity!

* Click below to see the third trailer for DORO – 25 Years In Rock

DORO – 25 Years Of Rock (2DVD/CD Slipcase)

DORO – 25 Years In Rock CD Track Listing:

Introduction

Earthshaker Rock

I Rule The Ruins

You’re My Family

Herzblut

Unholy Love (Featuring Honza K. Behunek)

East Meets West (Featuring Chris Boltendahl and Axel Rudi Pell)

Burn It Up (Featuring Jean Beauvoir)

Above The Ashes

Celebrate (Full Metal Female Version)

Breaking The Law

LONG LIVE DORO PESCH… THE METAL QUEEN.

Stone.

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ALICE COOPER “Along Came A Spider” – Reissue With 3 Bonus Tracks Releases December 14, 2010!

Posted in Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, heavy metal music, metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 14, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

ALICE COOPER – On December 14th, 2010, Along Came A Spider from the ultra-legendary Alice Cooper will be reissued on Bigger Picture Group. This reissue will contain three bonus tracks not included on the original release from 2008: Shadow Of Yourself, I’ll Still Be There and Salvation (Acoustic Unplugged). Along Came A Spider, a concept album which centers on a serial killer theme, touches on the rage, emotions and eventual remorse of this character. This album was originally released on July 29, 2008, on Steamhammer/SPV. Along Came A Spider is the 18th “solo” album from Alice Cooper and 25th album combined with Alice Cooper (The Band).

Multi-instrumentalists Greg Hampton (The New Czars, Science Faxtion) and Danny Saber (Black Grape, Agent Provocateur) are featured on guitar. Eric Singer (KISS, Badlands, Black Sabbath) is featured on drums. Slash also does a cameo on guitar, appearing on the track Vengeance Is Mine. Ozzy Osbourne is credited with harmonica on the track Wake The DeadKeri Kelli (RATT, Saints Of The Underground) also appears on guitar.

If you haven’t picked up this amazing Alice Cooper album just yet… now is the time, especially with the inclusion of 3 bonus tracks! Put your Metal trust in Stone, as I state… this is one Alice Cooper album to own.

A while back, in another dimension, I wrote a Metal synopsis about Along Came A Spider. You can check it out by clicking the little header below:

ALICE COOPER – ALONG CAME A SPIDER

Track Listing For Along Came A Spider (reissue):

Prologue/I Know Where You Live

Vengeance Is Mine

Wake The Dead

Catch Me If You Can

(In Touch With) Your Feminine Side

Wrapped In Silk

Killed By Love

I’m Hungry

The One That Got Away

Salvation

I Am The Spider/Epilogue

Shadow Of Yourself (Bonus Track)

I’ll Still Be There (Bonus Track)

Salvation (Acoustic Unplugged) (Bonus Track)

* For more info on ALICE COOPER, just click on the links below:

ALICE COOPER – myspace music

ALICE COOPER

LONG LIVE ALICE COOPER.

Stone.

BLACK RAIN “License To Thrill” – Is Your License To ROCK! Plus Current BLACK RAIN News!

Posted in glam metal, hair metal music, Hard Rock, hard rock bands, Heavy Metal, heavy metal bands, heavy metal news, metal music, metal odyssey, Music, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 13, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

BLACK RAIN – Released back on December 29, 2009, on Listenable Records, Black Rain License To Thrill is the first “real” album from this French Sleeze & Glam Metal Band. (Black Rain released a demo album back in 2006). Chock full of Hard Rockin’ vibes that explode with good times, partying, chasing the chicks and who gives a shit about priorities, Black Rain does an exemplary job of curing any funk you may find yourself drifting away in. French producer and Enfer Magazine founder, Dany Terbeche, brings his 80’s producing experience to the forefront of License To Thrill… making this album beefy and saturated with all things glorious about this 80’s Glam Metal sound.

Metal Odyssey’s correspondent and Best Metal Buddy, Scott Coverdale, has given Black Rain every word of Metal praise that’s probably known to mankind’s vocabulary. When Coverdale talks up a band this highly, Stone listens. Black Rain has taken a style, sound and energy from a Glam Metal culture and certainly made it their own brand. These guys would without a Metal doubt, have fit right in back in the mid to late 80’s… only this is 2010 and they fit right in now.

Admittedly, my Metal allegiance crosses over all sub-genres, therefore a healthy dose of License To Thrill is admittedly a listen for gettin’ psyched. Black Rain does have that Old School attitude and their songs just keep comin’ at me. Black Rain’s ability to Rock my senses in ways very similar to that of Motley Crue, Ratt, Quiet Riot and Poison makes me grin and chase my wife around the house. One of these days I’ll catch her.

N.A.S.T.Y. and Rock Your City will have you reachin’ for your unlaced sneakers, worn-torn jeans and concert tee… and a couple of cold six pack’s too. Black Rain is a band that shall make all the turtlenecks in the world cry and make all Glam Metal hungry fans of any generation raise their fists in the air… with post MTV era glee. The title track, License To Thrill, embodies every memorable quality of Black Rain, from the thumping rhythm section and electrifying guitar parts to the Glam laced vocals of Swan.

Kill’em All is my favorite song on this album. The all encompassing Hardness is what makes Kill’em All stand out for me. This song is built around speed as well, making it all the more appealing to my ears. Baby It’s You is a ballad that brings back cool memories of 80’s Arena concerts for me. Swan’s vocals just come across as Arena ready on this power ballad, plus it’s not seeping with sappiness either. Baby It’s You is just a really cool power ballad about, um, well, being in love.

Rock ‘N’ Roll Is Dead Long Live Rock ‘N’ Roll begins with a intro riff reminiscent to that of You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’ from the ultra legendary Judas Priest. This can very well be called the Heaviest hitter on License To Thrill, however, Rockstars Don’t Go To Jail is just as Heavy. Both songs MUST be played LOUD for maximum enjoyment… and trust me, Black Rain proves quite easily they have “that” Heavy Metal thunder in their veins. Metal be thy name.

No Forever is a power ballad that exhibits shades of Guns N’ Roses and Cinderella influences. Very melodic and well written, both lyrically and musically. This song just seems to come together from the opening note. The backing vocals compliment the emotional vibe of Swan’s lead vocals with super smooth fashion. Scott Coverdale likens No Forever’s influence to that of Guns N’ Roses ever memorable – November Rain. I’ll have to go along with him on that Metal notion.

Swan has the Glam Metal pipes to carry Black Rain onto the next level of notoriety. Max 2 lends his licks on lead guitar that are both pump-you-up and refreshing, while Heinrich on bass and Iann Lewis on drums keep it tight and balanced. Black Rain surely released a damn decent, debut full-length album with License To Thrill, just the energy alone that pulsates from their songs is evidence enough, that they are taking their music seriously.

With so many Glam/Hair Metal Bands from yesteryear still making quality noize, along with “newer” Glam Bands like Reckless Love and Crashdiet (to name a couple) emerging as legit flag bearers to this genre, Black Rain is jumping onto the scene at an opportune time. There are hooks aplenty with more guitar riffs, leads and solos on License To Thrill to satisfy any die-hard Glam fan the world over. Black Rain may not be a pioneer band of this colorfully loud Glam Metal movement, still, they are as righteously loyal, talented and raucous as their forefathers were with their songs… and that should make plenty of Glam/Hair and Sleeze fans sleep well at night.

* For more info on BLACK RAIN, just click on the cool link below:

BLACK RAIN – myspace music

BLACK RAIN:

Swan – vocals, guitar

Max 2 – guitar

Heinrich – bass

Iann Lewis – drums

Track Listing For License To Thrill:

Rock Your City

Innocent Rosie

N.A.S.T.Y.

True Girls Are Sixteen

License To Thrill

No Forever

Rock ‘N’ Roll Is Dead Long Live Rock ‘N’ Roll

Rockstars Don’t Go To Jail

Party War

Kill’em All

Baby It’s You (Bonus Track)

BLACK RAIN will be releasing a brand new studio album on February 14, 2011! Lethal Dose Of… will be the second full-length studio album from BLACK RAIN. I have found the titles to seven songs… they all ROCK quite soundly. Here they are:

My Young Star

Rock’ N’ Jive

Addicted To Failure

Heart Screams

Burn’ n’ Die

Overloaded

I Need My Doctor

* You can listen to all seven new BLACK RAIN songs! Just click below:

OUI FM/La Radio Rock

BLACK RAIN will be playing at the Bring The Noise Festival out in France, this December of 2010! They will be sharing the spotlight with Papa Roach, Airbourne and many more! I can’t read French, so the info on this promo poster pic is all I can share.

LONG LIVE BLACK RAIN.

Stone.

SWEET “Level Headed” – Looking Back Fondly, On A Rock Classic

Posted in classic rock, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, metal odyssey, Music, rock & roll, rock and roll, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 11, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

SWEET – Yes, some call them The Sweet. I prefer to call this British Rock Band by their name that appeared on 8 out of the 9 studio albums they released between 1971 and 1982, which is Sweet. Only their first album, (Funny How Sweet Co-Co Can Be) has “The Sweet” as their band name on the cover. Whatever, I guess. The plain fact of the Rock ‘N’ Roll matter, is that Sweet was one damn decent Rock Band of their time. Caught in the midst of a post British Invasion and winding down amongst the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal, Sweet still played their unique brand of Rock… and caught my attentive ears.

The first song that caught my attention from Sweet and had me very psyched-out was – Love Is Like Oxygen. This forever memorable song is from Sweet’s sixth studio album – Level Headed, released back in January of 1978, on Polydor Records. As it always seems to go, so many songs from my Rock fan past still psyche me out like never before. This terrific song from Sweet is no exception. I actually listened to it several times, while writing this post… and I just can’t grow weary of it. Metal be thy name.

Love Is Like Oxygen carries it’s Rockin’ delight through a synthesizer intro, with a most memorable guitar riff that follows… then the combination of these and a rhythm section so bold and pronounced, unveils an all encompassing meaty sound to follow. There are those “breakdowns” in Love Is Like Oxygen, (of the keyboard and acoustic kind), that teeter on the super mellow, only this song is so refreshingly far from being an AM gold hit from yesteryear. This song was born for FM, I can’t even consider trying to recount how many times I heard it played on those cool Connecticut radio stations back then.

When I first bought Level Headed, it was on vinyl and it was stocked at my local Caldor department store. I only knew of Love Is Like Oxygen… so I took the plunge and bought the entire album that one day. It was a gatefold album cover, with a black & white band photo taking up both inside covers. I believe, from my (gasp) memory, it was the band photo that appears on the U.K. cover of Level Headed. The Level Headed cover at the top of this post is the U.S. version. Check out what that U.K. version looks like below:

California Nights is a song with a chorus that tantalizes with that “sing-along” spirit. Bass guitarist Steve Priest sings lead on this song. (Guitarist Andy Scott sings lead on Dream On and FountainBrian Connolly sings lead vocals on Love Is Like Oxygen and the remainder of the songs on Level Headed). With a song like California Nights, it came across to me with a wide open vibe of feel-good. This was a song that was tailor made for cruising with the windows down on a hot Summer night… it still is that kind of song to me in 2010.

Dream On, (no it is not a cover of the Aerosmith classic), is a ballad which resonates with an overwhelming “heartfelt” emotion. I can remember the first time this song reached my ears, as this Level Headed album spun on my turntable. Whoa. My Judas Priest and Iron Maiden albums were in full view… I felt as if I got lost and woke up in mellow, mellow land. You want to know something? I loved it. This song may have sappy lyrics and is a ballad, only it was done “right”. As I listen to this song so many years later, I love it still. Honestly, if someone like Chris Daughtry covered this song today… it would be a top ten smash on the charts. I predict it would hit #1. I’m not being a wise-guy and kidding around either. This ballad could be re-released as a single today, in all of it’s original glory and be a hit just as well.

Strong Love is a tad Funky… in a pseudo-Disco sense of the word. This is actually the one song that could be accused of sounding “dated”, the only thing it is a downright catchy listen. This song is not The Village People, so there is no need to worry, all you Classic Rock folks. Anthem, No. 1 (Lady Of The Lake) and Anthem No. II are both strong with their European sounding vibe, these two songs are significant in separating Sweet from the “American” Rock sound of those late ’70’s. The keyboards and string arrangements on both Anthem songs certainly help in providing that European and “royalty” feel.

Level Headed is a Classic Rock album that I shall always look upon very fondly. Sweet seemed to weave their way around in the ’70’s and very early ’80’s with their own style of Rock that won’t be forgotten by me. If anyone out there wants to listen to an album that is diverse with songs, Rocks with efficiency and holds up extremely well with relevance after three decades, this is an album for you.

SWEET as they appeared on Level Headed:

Andy Scott – guitar, synthesizer, lead vocals, background vocals

Brian Connolly – lead vocals, background vocals

Steve Priest – bass, lead vocals, background vocals

Mick Tucker – drums, percussion, background vocals

Track Listing For Level Headed:

California Nights

Silver Bird

Dream On

Fountain

Love Is Like Oxygen

Anthem, No. 1 (Lady Of The Lake)

Strong Love

Lettres D’Amour

Anthem, No. II

Air On ‘A’ Tape Loop

LONG LIVE THE ROCK ‘N’ ROLL OF SWEET.

Rest In Peace, Brian Connolly.

Rest In Peace, Mick Tucker.

Stone.

Greg Hampton Of The New Czars – A Metal Odyssey Interview And Overview!

Posted in Guitar, guitarists, Hard Rock, hard rock music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal music, metal odyssey, Music, progressive rock, rock and roll, rock music, rock music interviews, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 9, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

GREG HAMPTON – What makes “the complete package” when it comes to being a musician? Everyone and their second cousin’s extended family would have a different answer for that. My answer is to look at Greg Hampton, the founder, lead vocalist, songwriter and guitarist for The New Czars. Trust me, I’ve probably left out many more Rockin’ hats that Greg wears in directing The New Czars to their Hard Rock heights… he is all about “hands on” with an old school work ethic, approach and mindset.

To incorporate relevance into a modern Hard Rock sound, while weaving a bit of experimentation into his music, Greg Hampton has seemed to tap into a realm of Heavy Music that has for too long been “the best kept secret” in the Rock Music world. Where the likes of King Crimson, RUSHNine Inch Nails and Tool (to name a few) have led the way and reaped the rewards for exemplary dives into Progressive, Industrial, Alternative and Experimental Heaviness, there are those “other” musicians and bands that have followed with the same attention to detail towards the Avant-garde. Greg Hampton and his band, The New Czars, are carrying that exploratory tradition onward, to shatter the normalcy that seems to blanket the Rock Music that has invaded our mainstream and subconscious.

The New Czars debut album, Doomsday Revolution, (Samson Records), was released on September 14, 2010… to an enthusiastic response amongst critics from the mainstream to the underground. I certainly applauded the diverse approach to what Greg Hampton set out to accomplish on Doomsday Revolution, the combination of music influences from Industrial to Funk are evident and transforms into what I would convey as… Hard Rock Cool and Hard Rock new… 2010 style.

Doomsday Revolution is sold just about anywhere… from itunes to Amazon. After The New Czars introduced the world to Doomsday Revolution, Greg Hampton wasn’t about to sit idle… it’s just not his style or character. I even question if Greg could spell the word idle… he’s that loyal and enthusiastic about the music he loves. Greg was soon busy on compiling and writing songs for the forthcoming EP from The New Czars, titled: Mining The Ruins. This EP is scheduled for a November 30, 2010 release.

On September 22, 2010, I received a very special surprise in my email inbox… an mp3 sent by Greg Hampton, it was his cover song of the ultra classic – Hey Joe. Now, you can either “cover” a song or you can cover a song while adding that “extra special” Rock ‘N’ Roll dust to it. Greg Hampton obviously had a jar full of special Rock ‘N’ Roll dust, just waiting for his cover of Hey Joe. I can remember vividly, the first time I listened to this mp3, on my computer that night. Honestly, I was stunned. Greg’s vocals were unreal… no, his guitar licks were unreal… no, it was both.

Greg was never trying to sound like or remotely copy the late and legendary Jimi Hendrix… Greg was only paying tribute to a Rock Star who started it all for the Hard Rock and arguably, the Heavy Metal movement, as we all know and love it today. As Greg expressed to me, “I have been a lifelong fan of Jimi Hendrix. With the fortieth anniversary of Jimi Hendrix’s passing approaching, I’ve been listening to a lot of his music. I wanted to do something to commemorate Jimi Hendrix on this important anniversary, through song. This cover of Hey Joe I’ve been working on for quite some time and I am very proud of it. I hope the fans will appreciate this cover of Hey Joe and like it as much as I do.”

Greg decided to give the “world premiere” of his cover of Hey Joe to Metal Odyssey… and on September 26, 2010, this amazing song was available for the world to hear. Metal Odyssey will forever cherish this moment… I can’t state just how honored I felt to have Greg put his cover of Hey Joe in my hands first. (Metal ostrich bumps moment, whoa). Greg played all instruments on Hey Joe, with the exception of drums. Chris Collier, (The New Czars alumni and multi-instrumentalist), was the drummer.

For those of you who may have missed out on hearing this ultra-terrific cover of Hey Joe, please feel free to click on the very large header below. I have a suspicion you might dig it:

World EXCLUSIVE Premiere – The Jimi Hendrix Experience “HEY JOE” Is Covered By THE NEW CZARS! LISTEN HERE FIRST!

Another exciting and historic Rock Music project that Greg Hampton has been working on, is his upcoming Tommy Bolin “Tribute” album he’s co-producing with Warren Haynes, along with associate producer/mixer Fabrizio Grossi. Once again, it is the genuine excitement and infectious urgency, in the voice of Greg, that let’s me know just how much he loves Rock ‘N’ Roll… and his allegiance to the late and great Tommy Bolin. If you’re to measure a man’s character, based on the number of his friends, well, the list below tells all about Greg Hampton.

Here is a rundown, of the beyond fabulous Rock musicians that have already completed sessions or are committed to this Tommy Bolin “Tribute” album: Steve Lukather, Warren Haynes, Brad Whitford, Nels Cline, Glenn Hughes, Oz Noy, John Scofield, Prairie Prince, Slash, Billy Gibbons, Ben Harper, Tom Morello, Derek Trucks, Steve Morse, John Scofield and Omar Rodriguez-Lopez. I do apologize, if I missed any names here… this is as up to the minute as I have available.

By now, you should agree that Greg Hampton is a veteran of the Rock Music industry. Working alongside the likes of Alice Cooper, he wrote songs and played lead guitar for 2008’s Along Came A Spider. To say that Greg Hampton holds the deepest respect and admiration for the legendary Alice Cooper is factual. Just the tone in Greg’s voice alone, when he speaks of Alice Cooper, tells the whole story. Greg speaks of not just writing songs for Alice Cooper. As I’ve interpreted it, from our conversations, he speaks of creating works of art for him. One listen to Along Came A Spider and you probably will agree. I know I sure do.

In October of 2009, Lita Ford returned, only this time there was some wickedness involved… Lita’s Wicked Wonderland album that is. Lita Ford had not released a studio album since 1995’s Black, regardless if you loved or hated Wicked Wonderland, the real Queen of American Hard Rock and Heavy Metal was back. Greg Hampton co-produced, mixed and played a variety of instruments for Wicked Wonderland.

As Greg has reflected on his working on the Wicked Wonderland album, he has done so with the upmost pride in it’s music that he helped create. Certainly, there have been some critics that have put down this album since it’s release, thus pushing Greg Hampton’s buttons. It is understandable, this album Greg Hampton worked tirelessly on, any album that has his signature on it he rightfully should defend. I’ve told Greg, it’s all a matter of personal interpretation, that music is art and open to critiques. I just hope Greg can forgive me, for my not liking Wicked Wonderland.

In 2007, Greg Hampton put together an “All-Star” band if you will, of musicians who seem to carry the same open mindedness to music exploration as he. Enter… Science Faxtion. Greg Hampton provides guitar and vocals, with Buckethead, Brian “Brain” Mantia, Tobe “Tobotius” Donohue and of course, Bootsy Collins. In October of 2008, they released Living On Another Frequency.

Of course, there are many other projects (both past and present) that Greg Hampton has been involved with as both a musician and producer. I’ve attempted to cover some of Greg’s works above, to give you a better insight and understanding of this tremendously skilled musician. In the past couple of months, I am very appreciative to have spoken with Greg Hampton, on many occasions. Greg’s candor and friendly approach to conversation does not get taken for granted by me… I’ve really enjoyed and appreciated speaking to him. Here is what Greg had to say, with some questions I asked of him:

Stone: Doomsday Revolution, your debut album with The New Czars, describe how excited and proud you are of this album… as you rightfully should be.

Greg: Very pleased! I went in with no set of rules. Be it good, bad or indifferent, people can perceive this album the way they want. I’m happy with it. I do hope people dig it still! Going in there were no pre-conceptions or guidelines. I’ve already had a little criticism about this album having uninspired lyrics.

Stone: What? Uninspired lyrics? Are you kidding me?

Greg: You know what, I have to please me first. At the end of the day, I’ve learned not to get too caught up in the reviews. I used to want to search out the guy and kick his ass but I’ve matured and I’m not like that anymore.

Stone: Is there a significant meaning in your band being named The New Czars?

Greg: No, not really. I was stuck in traffic, on Sunset Boulevard, on a Friday night and this band name just popped into my head! This album is a changing of the guard, musically, I guess. It has Metal and Progressive elements… and we’re all pretty good players doing it!

Stone: The more I listen to your vocals, which I admire, the more I hear some Ian Gillan influence. Am I off track, right on or kind of close in my opinion?

Greg: I’m more influenced by Glenn Hughes. Glenn is a great friend of mine. He came in to sing on a Tommy Bolin tribute album we’re doing. I’ve known Glenn for years. I had Trapeze albums when I was like, twelve or fifteen years old! One of my most favorite Glenn Hughes album is “Soul Mover”, Dave Navarro and Chad Smith played on it. It’s too bad more people don’t know about this record, it’s probably over their heads or something.

Stone: What is your idea or prediction of a Doomsday Revolution?

Greg: Well, I mean, the irony is my birthday is on December twenty first, it lands on the end of the world. As I blow out the candles, we’ll wait and see if we all implode! (laughs)

Stone: (laughs)

Greg: There’s a lot of conceptual things coming out. I’ve been researching and reading about more things, all of the elements I take in have opened my mind. “Doomsday Revolution” is no conceptual album though.

Stone: What motivated you to write “Why Do U Have 2 Lie”?

Greg: My good friend Billy Bob Thornton, he made a movie called “Daddy and Them”. It was an autobiographical situation about his life, a story that Billy told me about, it was about recollections of Billy’s life. That’s all I have to say about it really, I can’t elaborate any further.

Stone: “Brush With The Devil” takes me on an old school ride which I don’t mind taking. Was there an old school intent here, on your part?

Greg: I don’t know, in the early ’80’s, it was Pop stuff for me. My influence lies in the ’70’s, with the Beatles, Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin and Aerosmith. This song has an interesting meter and chord progression, I had to deliberate as how to sing it, with the melody over it and the chorus over it. It was a challenge.

Stone: “Time Stops” has many cool elements going on and is my favorite song on Doomsday Revolution. Which song is your personal favorite?

Greg: I like so many of them, “Crotch Critters”, “Don’t Watch Me”, “Time Stops” and “Why Do U Have 2 Lie”. The bridge on this song I could never get a handle on. I had the basic chords down. Paul came in and seemed to gel it all together. The initial verse came together on the piano, then I worked with the electric sitar for the basic elemental music. It’s hard to know! I wrote 25 songs, recorded nine or ten instrumentals, with another two or three vocal songs and two instrumentals on the digital bundle. Plus there are remixes on the digital bundle too. There are so many songs I like.

Stone: It’s understandable, Greg.

Greg: I can’t approach my music like when I write for Alice Cooper or Lita Ford, it just doesn’t make sense. They are different types of music. The instrumental things I really enjoy, it brings me thinking about Rush, I’m a big fan of Rush. I love the counter melodies Rush played. You know, I listen to the songs and re-learn my vocal bits. It’s a challenge singing on some of these songs! It’s the heat of the moment on recording them. I really do like neurodelica, it’s a crimsonesque (King Crimson like) instrumental. It’s not even on the record, it’s on the digital bundle.

Stone: Between Paul (Ill), David (Moreno) and yourself, there is a cornucopia of music styles you all are very well versed at playing. Can “Doomsday Revolution” be considered the consensus favorite style of music you guys really want to play?

Greg: There are so many different and eclectic musical variables in this new album. There are influences from Nine Inch Nails, the Beatles, some Jeff Beck fusion, Rush, King Crimson, Reggae and Funk. The song “Doomsday Revolution” has a funky Rock thing going on. I’m into too many types of music to be narrowing it down to what I play. When I’m driving the car, it could be Jimi Hendrix and Rammstein that I’m listening to! “Time Stops” has a Steely Dan-ish vibe happening with the verses and sitar parts. After “Time Stops” the songs get a little heavier though.

Stone: Having been influenced by King Crimson, describe how you felt having Adrian Belew contribute to “Doomsday Revolution”?

Greg: I always wanted to work with Adrian. Yet, I’m a huge fan of Rush too! I always liked Adrian’s solo stuff, I dug it all my life. I’ve always had a Beatles influence too. It’s more of a broad based influence with Adrian, he is a multi-instrumentalist like me. Adrian and King Crimson have held a depth of broad based musicianship over the years and that’s incredible. Adrian made me feel good that he compared our stuff to Nine Inch Nails and heavier King Crimson. Adrian is a great human being and an amazing singer too.

Stone: Being a multi-music talent, what is your favorite instrument to play and why?

Greg: Probably guitar. Right now, there are four sitting around me. It’s an immediate thing, I turn on my little amp on my desk and start writing and jamming.

Metal Odyssey Note: (Greg now picks up one of his guitars and breaks out into the opening riff from Alice Cooper’s – “Vengeance Is Mine”… and it kicks ass too).

Greg: “Vengeance Is Mine”… I wrote this song for Alice Cooper’s Along “Came A Spider” album. I never played that riff in my life, then one morning, with no coffee and barely awake, that riff just popped in my head as I was halfway down the stairs. This riff was of the instant gratification variety, I had three cups of coffee and finished the whole thing! All the main music was written and done before I recorded with Alice Cooper for “Along Came A Spider”. Most of the guitar parts I never changed a note. That album is all basically from the original first take. Don’t screw with it if it’s already good, why reinvent it?

Stone: That makes sense to me.

Greg: When Alice asked me what I had for “Along Came A Spider”, I had “Vengeance Is Mine” first. Eric Singer came over to my house and I played it for him, he said, “that’s the song man”! Eric played the drum fills, we did two takes on drums and then Eric walked out the door to tour Australia with KISS. Things went so well with it because I’ve known Eric since ’88, so I can communicate with him. I spent fifteen or sixteen hours of tracking this entire song, (“Vengeance Is Mine”), Alice’s vocals, mixing and everything else.

Stone: Wow, Greg. Most people would never know just how much time is spent in making a song, let alone an entire album.

Greg: I know.

Stone: What was it like to record with Alice Cooper on “Along Came A Spider”?

Greg: I’ve been a huge fan of his since I was a kid. Alice is the greatest guy and his stories are great! After so many years and probably thirty albums or so, there are so many stories. It was a gratifying and defining sort of experience for me. I wanted to deliver and I did. Rick Derringer and Pat Travers were big influences on me, so working with these guys over the years along with Alice… it’s check it off my bucket list so to speak! Alice would produce me! Danny Saber, Alice and I wrote all the songs for “Along Came A Spider”. Alice is a true professional and a legend. His memory retention of what he just sang is astounding! He’s a brilliant guy and a wonderful human being.

Stone: Does Alice Cooper belong in The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame?

Greg: That’s a criminal thing, really. There wouldn’t be a lot of these people in the industry without Alice Cooper. It’s just stupid and ridiculous that he’s not in there. Obviously, somebody in that committee over there has it out for him. It’s embarrassing to all of us in this business and it’s pathetic. You would think that someone on that committee would have the balls to do the right thing. It’s such a political mess going on with that place.

* For more info on The New Czars, just click on the link below:

THE NEW CZARS – myspace music

The New Czars

From left to right: Paul Ill (bass), Greg Hampton (guitar), David “Chilli” Moreno (drums)

LONG LIVE GREG HAMPTON & THE NEW CZARS.

Thank You, Greg.

Stone.

FAIR TO MIDLAND – Sign World Wide Deal With eOne Music!

Posted in alternative rock music, Hard Rock, hard rock bands, Heavy Metal, metal odyssey, Music, progressive rock, rock and roll, rock music, rock music news with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 8, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

(New York, NY) – Texas natives FAIR TO MIDLAND have signed a worldwide deal with eOne Music. A new album is schedule for the spring of 2011 along with a tour to support it.

The band has enlisted producer Joe Barresi (TOOL, QUEENS OF THE STONEAGE, COHEED AND CAMBRIA) to man the board for this next offering. “I’ve been looking forward to working with these guys for quite sometime. They’re a great band whose music is intricate and yet very melodic,” says Barresi.

The new album will be the band’s follow-up to “Fables from a Mayfly: What I Tell You Three Times Is True” which included the popular singles “Dance of the Manatee” and “Tall Tales Taste Like Sour Grapes.”

We’re all huge fans of what Barresi did with Queens of the Stone Age.  We wanted a stellar rock producer and were lucky enough to find one who has managed to find the happy medium between polish and performance,” says front man Darroh Sudderth.

Founded in 1998 in the quiet farm town of Sulphur Springs, Texas, Fair To Midland quickly became one of the Lone Star State’s fastest-rising bands, earning critical acclaim for their first two independent releases, 2001’s “The Carbon Copy Silver Lining” and the 2004 “inter.funda.stifle.”

Since the release of “Fables From a Mayfly,” they have shared the stage with bands such as the Smashing Pumpkins, Flyleaf, Chevelle, Dir en Grey, Alice In Chains, and Serj Tankian throughout the U.S. & Europe. The band has made appearances at festivals such as Coachella, Bamboozle, Download Festival, Rock AM Ring and Rock IM Park.

Fair To Midland is Darroh Sudderth (vocals), Cliff Campbell (guitar), Brett Stowers (drums), Matt Langley (keyboards) and Jon Dicken (Bass).

* For more info on Fair To Midland, click on the very cool link below:

Fair To Midland – myspace music

(Source: Entertainment One press release, November 8, 2010)

GO GET ‘EM, FAIR TO MIDLAND!

Stone.

 

MEAT LOAF “Bat Out Of Hell” – A 1977 Rock Classic That’s An Ageless Wonder

Posted in classic rock, Hard Rock, hard rock music, Heavy Metal, metal odyssey, Music, rock 'n' roll, rock and roll, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 8, 2010 by Metal Odyssey

MEAT LOAF – I don’t know why I do this. Do what you ask? Why do I think about when I first heard a particular song or album. What age was I? What year was it? How did this song or album affect me then, compared to now. Then, I begin to realize just how important, on a personal level, a respective song or album has been to me throughout my life. I’ve written about many songs and albums like this. I’m amazed as to how many songs and albums there are, that I hold so tremendously tight to my heart… and soul. Step in please, Meat Loaf… Bat Out Of Hell.

When I first heard that Classic Rock Ballad “of all ballads” – Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad, it was definitely on the radio. As I look back on this tiny portion of my life now, owning the Bat Out Of Hell album then was not important to me. As a young lad… it was all about this song and having it on a 45 rpm, to play it anytime I wanted. Trust me, I eventually owned Bat Out Of Hell on vinyl and later CD. I just could not see my music collection complete without it. Then again, when is my music collection ever complete?

Paradise By The Dashboard Light and You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night) were the next two songs I discovered from this prolific album. Yes, I felt spellbound by these Meat Loaf songs, hearing them on the radio back then made me feel like I was “getting older” and I could maybe get a chick and fall in love. These three songs had me maturing in my Rock Music listening habits, without my never knowing it at the time.

Metal truth be told, You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night) still gives me ostrich bumps up and down my arms and face, to this very day. The louder I play this song, the greater the emotional impact it has on me. (Not every song in the world is like that). Jim Steinman was, is and forever shall be a songwriting genius. The combination of Jim Steinman’s soul grabbing writing and Meat Loaf’s soul stirring vocals were a match made in Rock ‘N’ Roll Heaven… for me anyways… and I’m certain I’m not alone in this Metal thought too.

I’m not going to get into “factual numbers and certification” here, however, Bat Out Of Hell is one of the greatest selling Rock albums of all-time. I can understand why. It seems as if this album never loses it’s relevance for me. The songs on Bat Out Of Hell can be lyrically accepted today as they were in those late ’70’s… there really is nothing corn-dog about these song’s themes. As for the Rock Music as a whole, what other album out there today can drop some teary-eyed ballads in the midst of such Rockin’ cool songs and still come across as not selling out with bubble gum? It’s difficult to do.

All Revved Up With No Place To Go is the oft overlooked “hit” from this Meat Loaf album. It registers definitively with all Rock ‘N’ Roll glory. Only Meat Loaf can give this song it’s roller coaster emotion that it fosters. Meat Loaf surely showcased his theatrical Rock vocals on this song… and many other of his songs without a doubt. The title track, Bat Out Of Hell, can be stamped as epic for both it’s length and layering. This is a song that arguably best exemplifies what 1970’s Rock was all about. Bat Out Of Hell was that song on an album that was never meant to become FM friendly due to it’s length, a song meant for the fan of that generation… the astute Rock enthusiast that wanted more than the Bay City Rollers.

For an album of seven songs, Bat Out Of Hell did something that many studio albums of ten, twelve or more songs doesn’t… providing no filler songs. As for the musicians behind Meat Loaf on Bat Out Of Hell, well, all I can say is quality creates quality. Todd Rundgren on guitar, Edgar Winter on saxophone… not too shabby.

My advice to those who never have listened to this tremendous album of Rock is simple: go out and buy it. Listen to it. Take it in. Then, realize, that this is what Rock Music song writing is all about. Afterwards, you shall know as to why the genre of Classic Rock exists in the first place. Meat Loaf, Jim Steinman and Bat Out Of Hell are just three of the reasons… that gave Classic Rock it’s name. Bat Out Of Hell, a Rock Classic… an ageless wonder.

Original Track Listing For Bat Out Of Hell:

Bat Out Of Hell

You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth (Hot Summer Night)

Heaven Can Wait

All Revved Up With No Place To Go

Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad

Paradise By The Dashboard Light

For Crying Out Loud

* Reissued Bonus Tracks:

Great Boleros Of Fire (Live Intro)

Bat Out Of Hell (Live)

* All songs on Bat Out Of Hell were written by Jim Steinman.

* The late, Hall Of Fame Baseball legend, Phil “Scooter” Rizzuto, from my beloved New York Yankees, is credited with the “spoken word” for the play-by-play during Paradise By The Dashboard Light.

* Bat Out Of Hell was originally released in October of 1977, on Epic Records.

LONG LIVE MEAT LOAF & JIM STEINMAN.

Rest In Peace, Phil Rizzuto.

Stone.

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