Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Randy Rhoads Remembered (32 Years Ago Today)

Today marks the 32nd anniversary of the death of one of hard rock’s true guitar heroes, Randy Rhoads.

Randy, who found massive success with Ozzy Osbourne’s solo band back in 1980, after starting his career in an early version of Quiet Riot, died on March 19, 1982.  He was a victim of a plane crash accident in Leesburg, Florida while on tour with Ozzy. His death propelled him into the same vanguard as other legendary guitarists who also had their careers cut short by tragedy.

It wasn’t just the fact that Randy Rhoads dying young cemented his legendary status. He was well on his way to the pantheon of musical genius while still alive.

Randy’s legend runs so deep within the music community, it’s very easy to forget he only recorded two albums with Ozzy (Blizzard of Ozz and Diary of a Madman – both released in 1981). But the influence spread far and wide to burgeoning and established guitarists all across the world.

With a blinding speed and a pyrotechnic sonic fervor, the power of Randy’s work is stunning. He achieved so much success and spread an influence so wide at such a young age, (he was only 25 years old when he died) and with such a small amount of recorded material, is an amazing feat in itself. With his bone-crunching riffs, on top of walls of sound that would shake and rattle one’s teeth and soul, Randy played his guitar like no one before or since. In essence, he led a musical revolution in which he never had a chance to witness.

Randy’s legacy lives on to this day and will continue to do so as he lives on in so many others.

Randy Rhoads performing live during his stint in Quiet Riot (1978-79).  Watch this video and you’ll hear many portions of the solo which would go on to become classic Ozzy tunes.

QUIET RIOT (ft. Randy Rhoads) September 22, 1979 

New Metallica “Lords of Summer” [Garage Demo] Posted Today

The new Metallica demo “Lords of Summer” was posted today coming just three days after debuting the song live in Bogota, Columbia.

I listened to the live bootleg version from the Bogota gig (posted on YouTube: Metallica - The Lords of Summer [LIVE] Bogotá, Colombia 03/16/14) and liked it immediately.  Even though the sound was shit, it was still listenable and I could tell it had that old-school 'Tallica feel to it.

Low and behold, the kind Metalli-guys shared a demo/studio version of “Lords of Summer” today and it’s pretty amazing.

Have a listen.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Playlist (Mar 9th-15th 2014)

  • Corsair – Self-Titled
  • KXM – Self-Titled
  • Crobot – The Legend Of The Spaceborne Killer
  • Destrage – Are You Kidding Me? No!
  • Bigelf – Into The Maelstrom
  • Rush – Pinkpop Festival (Netherlands  06-04-1979)
  • Savage Messiah – The Fateful Dark
  • Slough Feg – Digital Resistance
  • Conquering Dystopia – Self-Titled
  •  Iron Savior – Rise of the Hero

KISS Destroyer – 38 years ago today (released March 15, 1976)

Hmmmmm, where do I begin?

1. “Detroit Rock City”
2. “King of the Night Time World”
3. “God of Thunder”
4. “Great Expectations”
5. “Flaming Youth”
6. “Sweet Pain”
7. “Shout It Out Loud”
8. “Beth”
9. “Do You Love Me?”
10. “Rock and Roll Party” <hidden track>

I was knocked on my ass by KISS when ALIVE was released, but this album took it another 900 miles. “Detroit Rock City”, “Flaming Youth”, “Sweet Pain”, “Shout It Out Loud” and “God of Thunder” (ok, that’s half the album right there) where, without a doubt, the tracks I played all the time. I wore the grooves down on the vinyl and had to wait until the next year to get another one. Even though “Beth” was their biggest hit, I wasn’t big on it since I was a little guy wasn’t a fan of the mellow tunes. I don’t know too many KISS fans who don’t cite this album as one of their favorites to this day. Among the 24 studio albums released, Dressed To Kill, Rock and Roll Over, Destroyer, Love Gun, Ace Frehley (solo), and Creatures of the Night are may favorites. But Destroyer stands out among them all because the opening track, “Detorit Rock City” grabs you and thrusts you into a scenario about a guy killed on his way to a Rock concert. That shocked the hell out of me, but I loved it. Hooked from that day on.

“Movin’ fast, doin’ 95
Hit top speed but I’m still movin’ much too slow
I feel so good, I’m so alive
I hear my song playin’ on the radio……” KISS “Detroit Rock City” (1976)

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Happy 68th David Gilmour

David Gilmour is an artist I wish we saw more of over the years. Aside from his years in Pink Floyd, he carved out his own direction via solo albums, which had something to offer outside the ‘walls of Floyd’.  But the music he created in Pink Floyd is why he’s in the Rock and Roll history books. Last studio album David released was in 2006 “On An Island” and the title track alone stops me in my tracks when I hear it.  It has that full on Floydian feel to it, but the tones which emanate from that song are truly spectacular.

My favorite Gilmour/Floyd tracks:

“Division Bell”
“Not Now John”
“Wish You Were Here”
“There’s No Way Out of Here”
“Young Lust”
“All Lovers Are Deranged”
“Comfortably Numb”
“On An Island”
“Learning To Fly”

Happy birthday, David!! Salute!  <insert cold shot of Crown here>

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Yngwie J. Malmsteen’s Rising Force released 30 years ago today

First time I heard Swede-shredder Yngwie Malmsteen was in 1983 when he was featured on three albums/two bands: L.A.’s Steeler (w/Ron Keel on vocals) and Alcatrazz (with one of my favorite all-time vocalists Graham Bonnett) ‘No Parole From Rock and Roll’ and ‘Live Sentence’. I always had a thing for ‘live’ albums and ‘Live Sentence’ literally blew my mind.

When Yngwie decided to release his debut solo album in 1985 “Yngwie J. Malmsteen’s Rising Force ” I knew it would be great, but it blew the doors off all three albums from 1983. Side bar: I always got a kick out of the ‘J’ he had added to his name. I get the classical connection, seriously, I get it…but I joked about that the most back in the day. Kinda went like this, “You have to listen to the new Ingvay Jaaaaaaaaay Malmsteen album!’

My best friend and I listened to this album ALL THE DAMN TIME. We could play it frontward, backward, upside down. We hit every freakin’ note….air guitar of course. This and Armored Saint’s “Marck of the Saint” were the two we listened to, one after the other.
Having not listened to this album for a couple years, until today, I proved I can STILL play every air guitar note for note. <evil grin>

Yngwie set the neo-shredder bar and, in my humble opinion, threw Eddie Van Halen flying into the back seat. I couldn’t believe how he played circles around every guitar player I idolized at the time (with the exception of Randy Rhoads). This album holds up very well after 30 years and doesn’t sound dated to these old ears.

If you’ve never listened to this one the you lived under a very large rock.  Then again, it’s never too late to give ol’ Mr. Jaaaaaaay Malmsteen a go.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

For 30 Years “This Is Spinal Tap” Has Gone To ’11’

Rob Reiner’s classic, “This is Spinal Tap” is the definition of mockumentary since being released March 2nd 1984.

The story of a British heavy metal band’s comeback tour across the U.S. is the BEST rock satire for music groups, metal heads and film lovers.

You may think a film from the early 80s would have become stale over the years, but Spinal Tap is as fresh as ever. Band members Nigel Tufnel (Christopher Guest), David St. Hubbins (Michael McKean) and Derek Smalls (Harry Shearer) remain hilarious and clueless caricatures. The film and its musical satire still hold up after 30 years and remains the uber inside joke for many musicians, as this movie serves as a reminder of the many ‘spinal tap moments’ in their own careers.

I will cherish this movie forever.

“If we need that extra push over the cliff…….”

“These go to eleven”

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Aerosmith “Get Your Wings” celebrates 40 today (aka: side two, track two / aka: ignorance is bliss / aka: my holy grail)

Aerosmith shares a 40 year anniversary with Rush today (see Rush self titled debut turns 40) since March 1st marks the release of 1974’s “Get Your Wings”. An album I didn’t even know about until 1979 (it was the 70’s, I was young and only knew “Dream On” at that point because it was an FM radio staple).

I knew Aerosmith from what I heard on radio (“Dream On”, “Sweet Emotion”, “Last Child”, “Walk This Way” and “Draw The Line”) and nothing else because KISS was still my universe and no other band existed to me. I didn’t get into this band until 1979 when I moved from New Jersey to New Mexico. The local Rock radio station (94 Rock) in Albuquerque would play “Train Kept A Rollin” almost every hour on the hour. And I could never understand why a live version of the song ALWAYS followed the studio version. I also couldn’t believe they mentioned Albuquerque in the song (“Well, we made a stop in Albuquerque“). And I had no clue the song was released five years prior. Yes, I was a clueless dude for a bit. Regardless, I was 100% into the live version and had to have it. I would call the radio station to request only the “live version”. I was either met with the dial tone soon after or, “Yeah..haha…yeah…we can try and do that for ya kid”. I was never informed the studio and live version of “Train” was one track (side two track two, I still remember). Hang on, it gets better.

After I placed my request, I grabbed a blank cassette (an old no-name cassette that had been recorded over countless times and so thin from wear one could probably see through it, scotch tape over the missing tabs, labels removed and replaced with masking tape), popped it into my Radio Shack tape recorder, placed it next to my portable radio’s speaker and waited for the song to play. And as Murphy’s Law would have it, when you sit and wait for a song to play, it’s not gonna happen until you give up after two hours, get up and walk away for 10 seconds only to come back and hear it playing. I went through cassette tapes like a baby goes through diapers by always requesting songs and just hitting record until the tape runs out, then flipping it over until I had the songs I wanted. I finally captured “Train Kept A Rollin” and edited it myself keeping only the live version and adding it to an “already in progress” mixed tape (which had “Iron Man”, “The Zoo”, “Lights Out”, “Boys Are Back In Town” and “Cat Scratch Fever” on Side A).

After a few weeks I figured it was time to own “Get Your Wings” because if the other songs on the album were just as good as “Train” then I’d be in heaven. I went to the local record store and found “Get Your Wings” on vinyl, 8-Track and cassette, but none of them included the live version. Couldn’t find it anywhere! Again, had someone told me (hello 94 Rock DJ) it was on the album then I wouldn’t have been so ignorant. Make that ‘Ignorant Part I’. And none of my new friends were into Rock music at this point.

Enter ‘Ignorant Part II’. I walk up to the record store counter with the album in hand and ask the guy where I can find the live version of “Train Kept A Rollin”. He asks me, “Are you looking for the Tiny Bradshaw, The Yardbirds or the Aerosmith version?” Wait…what?? I thought it was an Aerosmith song. So I hesitated a little bit because I had no idea there were other versions and told him, “Aerosmith”. He told me it was on “Get Your Wings”. I grabbed a copy, looked at the back cover again and didn’t see it listed.

And ‘Ignorant Part III’ I make my way back to the counter with record in hand and tell him (again) that I want the live version of “Train”. He points to the record. I tell him it only has the studio version. <pause> Yeah, he laughed and made sure to grab a few of the other guys who worked there to get in on it at my expense. When I sheepishly asked what was so funny, they grabbed a copy from behind the counter and put it on the turntable…side two, track two. I stood there listening to the studio version and made my case again telling them I didn’t want that version. More laughing ensued. Just as the song ended, I could hear the live audience swell and the live version of “Train” blaring out of the store’s sound system. What the…?? I asked the guys, “It’s recorded like that on the record?” All of them still laughing. <insert Charlie Brown sound of pain when Lucy pulls the football away as he runs in to kick it>

Needless to say, I tried to ignore the embarrassment, plunked down the $12 and bought the album. Once they calmed down, they told me it was cool that I even knew who Aerosmith still was. I had no idea what they meant at that time because I didn’t keep up on the music magazines (Hit Parader, Circus, Creem – didn’t enter my life until 1980 – that’s another story). But I was so damn happy to have found this (my holy grail) and a better sounding copy of “Train” over my cassette version. I went on to appreciate the rest of the album as well (“Same Old Song and Dance”, “Seasons of Wither”, Lord of the Thighs” and “Pandora’s Box”). Every time I think of this album it will always remind me of “Train Kept A Rollin” and my small journey to find the live version.

And if you’ve never heard the Tiny Bradshaw (recorded in 1951) or Yardbird version (1968), go look for them on YouTube. You’ll be surprised.

I give you my holy grail (side two track two):

Rush self-titled debut turns 40 today

Rush released their debut album 40 years ago today. It’s the only album to feature drummer John Rutsey (who was replaced by Neil Peart before ‘Fly by Night’ was released a year later).

While songs such as “In the Mood” and “Finding My Way” have appeared in Rush live set lists on occasion, most of the eight songs fall to the wayside (minus the die-hard fans) and with the exception of “Working Man,” THE song that served as the introduction to Rush.

Thank you Donna Halper (the WMMS Cleveland disc jockey/music director as mentioned in the Rush movie “Beyond the Lighted Stage”) who received a copy of “Working Man” and took notice of the length of the song (true story). She mentioned she was usually looking for long “bathroom songs” that her DJs could throw on when nature called. At seven minutes plus, “Working Man” was ideal and its blue collar theme fit the town like a glove. Then it all began…..

Here we are, forty years later and the Rush machine continues to move on and their legions of fans grow in numbers. They were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame last year and still remain relavent. They don’t rely on touring as a “greatest hits” band, but release albums that are extremely imaginitive and contain substance (see “Snakes & Arrows” and “Clockwork Angels”).

Late last year I had read this album would be reissued this year to celebrate the 40 year milestone and the members of Rush are “very involved” in the process of putting the package together.

**UPDATE** To mark the band’s 40-year recording career, on April 15, 2013, Universal Music Enterprises (UMe) will celebrate with the vinyl reissue of the original Moon Records (pre-Mercury) release of Rush, as part of Universal’s reDISCovered vinyl series.

“It seems to me I could live my life / A lot better than I think I am / I guess that’s why they call me / The working man”  Rush “Working Man” (self-titled debut album 1974).

Friday, February 28, 2014

Remembering Dave Prichard (Armored Saint) 24th Anniversary

Today marks the 24th anniversary of the passing of Armored Saint guitarist Dave Prichard. He was diagnosed with leukemia and on Feb 28, 1990, he passed away from the disease at the early age of 26.

He had made a substantial mark in the music world spanning one EP and four albums [Armored Saint EP (1983), March of the Saint (1984), Delirious Nomad (1985), Raising Fear (1987), Saints Will Conquer – LIVE (1988)].

But Dave lived on even after his untimely death.

1991’s ‘Symbol Of Salvation’ included a demo of Dave’s solo on the song “Tainted Past”.  In 2001, Metal Blade Records released the 2-CD set ‘Nod to the Old School’ which included unreleased tracks, rarities, demos and live material. And in 2003, ‘Symbol of Salvation’ was re-issued/remastered as a 3-disc collection which included all of Dave’s original 1989 4-track demos of every song from that album (except “Half Drawn Bridge”). 2004 saw the DVD re-release of their 1987 VHS “A Trip Thru Red Times” which included video’s (pro and bootleg).

I had the privilege of seeing Dave with the Saint opening for Metallica in ’85 and again in ’86 opening for Saxon. He always had that ‘it’ factor and it would’ve been only a matter of time before he became more well-known.

Enjoy this live Saint concert – Hell On Wheels Tour filmed in Minneapolis, MN (Sept 15, 1987)
We miss ya Dave!

“Give in/Give and take/Taken by mistake/From now on I call the shots/Long before I die, long before I die” – taken from 1986’s ‘Delirious Nomad’…opening track “Long Before I Die”.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Pantera’s “Vulgar Display Of Power” is 22 years old today

“Vulgar Display Of Power” is 22 years old today – HAPPY FUCKIN’ BLACKTOOTH BIRTHDAY!!! 

This was the album that catapulted Pantera into the quintessential American Metal band of 90’s. Just add Dimebag Darrell’s maniacal riffing and extremely intense solos, Phil Anselmo’s ferocious vocal delivery and Vinnie Paul and Rex Brown’s rhythmic-groove session and what happens? The face of extreme music changes forever.

“Mouth for War”, “New Level”, “This Love”, “Walk” and “Hollow” morphed this Texan quartet and slayed their previous release “Cowboys From Hell” from the start. Combined with go-to-producer guru Terry Date, he captured the all-definitive Pantera sound. You know the one.

VDOP was a true testament to the heavy metal genre that Pantera had something to prove. The songs were less polished than their previous release, “Cowboys From Hell” and had grit, dirt, mold and just enough crust to grab the listener by the balls (women by the tatas…yes, I had to go there), smack ’em around and expect them to beg for more. There’s no denying the classic Pantera cuts such as, “Walk”, “Fucking Hostile”, “A New Level” and “Mouth For War”. A number of songs on this album have been covered by a number of bands and artists, especially following the passing of Darrell “Dimebag” Abbott.  The spirit of Dime lives on in all those who loved the guy, but also by the fans who undoubtedly embrace this band forever.

The 20th anniversary reissue (released May 2012) included an unreleased track, “Piss” and a DVD from the 1992 Monster of Rock performance in Italy (posted below for your viewing pleasure).

Getcha pull!

Monday, February 24, 2014

R.I.P. Dave Brockie (aka Oderus Urungus/GWAR)

GWAR was always about having fun and making fun of everything (politics, sex, history etc.) and gave everyone THE best over-the-top performances.  I was lucky enough to see GWAR eight times and everytime was something different.  NO ONE can replace the great Oderus Urungus.  He will be missed.

Official news release by Richmond outlet Style Weekly and confirmed by the band’s manager Jack Flanagan:

“It is with a saddened heart, that I confirm my dear friend Dave Brockie, artist, musician, and lead singer of GWAR passed away at approximately 6:50 p.m. EST Sunday, March 23, 2014,” Flanagan said. “His body was found Sunday by his bandmate at his home in Richmond, VA. Richmond authorities have confirmed his death and next of kin has been notified. A full autopsy will be performed. My main focus right now is to look after my bandmates and his family. More information regarding his death shall be released as the details are confirmed.”

Police were called to the singer’s Richmond home Sunday night after responding to a call by Brockie’s roommate. Brockie had already died by the time police arrived. Foul play is not suspected at this time, but a cause of death has yet to be determined.

“Dave was one of the funniest, smartest, most creative and energetic persons I’ve known,” former Gwar bassist Mike Bishop told the paper. “He was brash sometimes, always crass, irreverent, he was hilarious in every way. But he was also deeply intelligent and interested in life, history, politics and art.”

“I wish it was a joke,” added former band member Chris Bopst. “Everyone is in shock.”

Brockie had been in a punk band named Death Piggy that staged crude plays when he founded Gwar in 1984. After meeting band member Hunter Jackson, who had created props for Death Piggy and began work on the film Scumdogs of the Universe, Brockie used the outlandish costumes created for the film to form the joke group Gwaaarrrgghhlllgh. After numerous lineup changes and the shortening of the band name, Brockie dissolved Death Piggy and led Gwar, who released their debut album Hell-O in 1988.

The satirical metal band quickly earned a following for its macabre, over-the-top costumes and scatological, offensive lyrics, fashioning themselves interplanetary warriors descended from aliens who arrived on Earth to enslave and slaughter the human race.  The band celebrated their 30th anniversary in 2014, having released their 13th album, Battle Maximus, last year.

“His penchant for scatological humors belied a lucid wit,” said Bishop. “He was a criminally underrated lyricist and hard rock vocalist, one of the best, ever! A great frontman, a great painter, writer, he was also a hell of a bass guitarist. I loved him. He was capable of great empathy and had a real sense of justice.”

Sunday, February 23, 2014

KISS pre-Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame D-R-A-M-A

A few weeks ago news spread that KISS would be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame. Fuckin’ finally! I was one of the thousands of avid KISS Army minions (rock soldiers…ahem) since the 70’s and it was gratifying to see this band enter into this “members only/super secret squirrel shit club” after being passed over year after year (since 1986) for real rockers like ABBA, The O’Jays and Talking Heads.

But wait, there’s more.

The RRHOF is only inducting the original members (Gene, Paul, Ace and Peter). Not the slew of past band members or artists who actually performed on the classic KISS albums.  I would need three days to assemble that list.

But wait, there’s more.

Gene $immons and Paul Stanley regurgitated a response in retaliation to the Hall’s confirmation of inducting only the four core/original members. From Paul (and I quote), “tainted, corrupted and distorted” Hall of Fame for being unwilling to discuss inducting anybody but the four original members of Kiss.”  WHAT?!? What a set of balls Paul has in creating so much drama surrounding their past lives with Ace and Peter and wanting to perform with their current “Ace” and “Peter” for the induction ceremony.  You’re going to lambast the Hall and tell them their rules suck? Gene’s statement tried to explain how ex-KISS members are like ex-wives/girlfriends and why would anyone want to bring their past/ex’s to a party.  Shut the fuck up, Chaim. THINK ABOUT YOUR FANS…end of story.

But wait, there’s more.

Ace Frehley released a statement a couple days ago and revealed that he and original drummer Peter Criss will not be joining their former bandmates on stage during April’s RRHOF induction ceremony. This is due to Gene and Paul having decided to perform with current members Tommy [Ace stand-in] and Eric [Peter stand-in], and the Hall is OK with that decision. Then Peter released his statement which included the following, “It’s disappointing to have to say to you, the fans, Ace and I have been denied a performance with Gene and Paul for our Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction. This is disgraceful and I feel bad for the fans who were looking forward to the four of us being inducted together.”

But wait, there’s more.

Today, Gene and Paul dropped this shitbomb on the fans, “To bring this to a quick end, we have decided not to play in any line-up and we will focus our attention on celebrating our induction into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.” You can find the entire statement online, but Gene also mentioned he and Paul wanted to celebrate the entire history of KISS w/all past and current members.  Yeah, OK Gene. Let’s get back to reality now.

As it stands, Ace, Peter, Gene and Paul will stand at the podium together, make their individual speeches, accept their RRHOF award and then that will be the last time we ever see the four original members of KISS in the same room ever again.  Well played Demon and Star Child, well played.  I’m sure your fans are proud of you both.  Thanks for taking the high road, tearing off the ego suits for an evening and making peace with Ace and Peter for a few hours. Thanks again.

By the way, how soon will KISS Online be carrying the “official” KISS Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame t-shirts w/the images of the original lineup? Just curious.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Rock your VD today!

Rock your VD! 😉 \m/

The lyrics pretty much say it all. Share it with you Valentine today.

Ronnie James Dio Tribute CD “This Is Your Life”

Mark your online calendars for April 1st!!

To celebrate Ronnie James Dio, an all-star group of his friends recorded 13 of their favorite tracks for a tribute album entitled, “This Is Your Life” which will raise funds for the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund. This amazing tribute will be available from Rhino April 1st.

Pretty phenomenal track listing.  Majority are new recordings where a few have been released over the last few years.  So many highlights here, can’t wait to get my hands on this.  The album art is equally incredible (have a peek below). \m/\m/

“Neon Knights” – Anthrax*
“The Last In Line” – Tenacious D*
“The Mob Rules” – Adrenaline Mob
“Rainbow In The Dark” – Corey Taylor, Roy Mayorga, Satchel, Christian Martucci, Jason Christopher*
“Straight Through The Heart” – Halestorm*
“Starstruck” – Motörhead with Biff Byford*
“The Temple Of The King” – Scorpions*
“Egypt (The Chains Are On)” – Doro
“Holy Diver” – Killswitch Engage
“Catch The Rainbow” – Glenn Hughes, Simon Wright, Craig Goldy, Rudy Sarzo, Scott Warren*
“I” – Oni Logan, Jimmy Bain, Rowan Robertson, Brian Tichy*
“Man On The Silver Mountain” – Rob Halford, Vinny Appice, Doug Aldrich, Jeff Pilson, Scott Warren*
“Ronnie Rising Medley (Featuring A Light In The Black, Tarot Woman, Stargazer, Kill The King)” – Metallica*
“This Is Your Life” – Dio

* Previously unreleased

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Now Playing

Now Playing via CD, iPod, Spotify, or YouTube:

  • Y&T – Black Tiger
  • Rush – Permanent Waves
  • Black Sabbath – Mob Rules
  • Cheap Trick – Dream Police
  • Angra – Angels Cry
  • Jeff Beck – Blow By Blow
  • AC/DC – Powerage
  • King’s X – Live
  • Yes – Fragile

Monday, February 10, 2014

Rocklahoma 2014 Announcement

The details surrounding ROCKLAHOMA 2014 (which is touted as the biggest Memorial Day Weekend party in the U.S.) were released today and it’s a doozie.  The three day shindig goes down May 23-25 in Pryor, OK.


Dee Snider of Twisted Sister was quoted saying, “I view this festival as sort of a ‘Royal Rumble’ of rock; it’s every band for itself, each trying to claim the belt. When Twisted Sister is done that night, the promoters are going to need to change the name of the event to ‘I Wanna Rocklahoma’!”

Presale tickets go on sale Wed Feb 12th and public sale will Feb 14th (the perfect Valentine’s Day gift).

Visit the official Rocklahoma site for more info:

New Releases (February 2014)

A few of the new releases coming out this month. Number next to the release = date…easy enough.


  • 04 Battle Beast – Battle Beast
  • 04 Behemoth – The Satanist
  • 04 Grand Magus – Triumph and Power
  • 04 Within Temptation – Hydra
  • 11 Def Leppard – Slang (Reissue) [Deluxe Edition]
  • 11 The Treatment – Running With the Dogs
  • 18 Adrenaline Mob – Men Of Honor
  • 18 Altitudes and Attitude – Self-Titled EP [ft. Anthrax's Frank Bello and Megadeth's Dave Ellefson]
  • 25 Heart – Fanatic Live From Caesars Colosseum [CD/DVD/Blu-ray]
  • 25 Vandenberg’s MoonKings – Self-Titled
  • 28 Iron Savior – Rise of the Hero
  • 28 Manowar – Kings Of Metal MMXIV
  • 28 Matt Sorum Fierce Joy – Self-Titled
  • 28 Anette Olzon – Shine [ex-Nightwish vocalist]
  • TBA  — Farmikos EP [ft. guitarist Joe Holmes....ex-Ozzy guitarist and former Randy Rhoads student]

Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Ground Beneath releases new “SelfTitled” album

This CD covers the many facets of emotional high and lows of TGB founder, guitarist/vocalist and mastermind Steve Civerolo.  It’s a journey that needs to be visited repeatedly to absorb the complexity and nuances which make this album the incredible chunk of musical genius it is.  

I was mesmerized by the swelling of “It’s You / Blame”, the ferocity of “Say It”, “Disappear”, “RLS” and “Choke”. This also includes some built-in “soon to be classics” such as “Blame”, “Memphis” and the sing-along of “Mine”.  

You want humor? The closing track "Burjay" is hilarious and it deserves a few listens to catch it all. There are MANY peaks and valleys on here which encompass the human element. I wasn't disappointed with any of these tracks whatsoever. It's classic from head-to-toe and it deserves a lot of attention.

First listen will have anyone hooked. The jaunt is worth exploring as often as possible. Worthy to be included in everyone’s music collection.

The Ground Beneath:
Steve Civerolo – Vocals/Electric & Acoustic six & Twelve string guitars
Hunter McCoy – Bass
Brian "Bearface" Scott – Drums

Paul Civerolo – Guest lead electric six string guitar on “Lost In Me”
Jonathan “Jonny Law” Jonah (WarnerDrive vocalist) vocals on “Burjay”  
Brian Ostrom – Four string Bass guitar on “Memphis”
Laurie Selby – Cello on “It’s You”/”Blame”/”Not Me
Rick Fusco (yours truly) & Kenny Davis – Gang vocals on “Mine”.

The Ground Beneath - Blind [Official Video]


This site is something I’ve put together to share my affinity for music. I’m a fan…pure and simple. I do not work for a record label nor am I endorsed by any person/company.

I have been a long time music fan since I was at least six years old. The musical catalyst which initially fed my young brain was courtesy of my Mom (Santana, Chicago, Doobie Brothers, Earth Wind and Fire) and my sister and cousin (Billy Joel, Led Zeppelin, YES, Cheap Trick, the Cars, Elton John, and Fleetwood Mac). The rest of it was by the magic of radio.

I lived in New Jersey at the time and WPLJ out of New York City became my addiction as I heard Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Boston, Alice Cooper, Deep Purple, Van Halen, Ted Nugent and Rainbow (to name a few). My friends in the neighborhood were hooked on KISS and I fell into the KISS Army soon after.

My taste in music evolved and I went from Hard Rock to Heavy Metal in a blink of an eye. The 80′s was a whole new ball game for me. I was into everything – Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Metallica, Saxon, Armored Saint, Raven, Testament, W.A.S.P., Slayer, Anthrax, Overkill, Ratt, Scorpions etc.

I went to the local record stores weekly and fell in love with many of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) after reading through fanzines and import Rock/Metal magazines (Metal Forces was a favorite). The rest is history…..