When the iPod shuffle gets it right, it gets it right. Driving into work this morning, the shuffle made 6 random songs from different bands, sound like one fluent album sequence.
Chainsaw Charlie (Murders In The New Morgue)
By WASP, from The Crimson Idol (1991)
I have no excuse for not attending the WASP concert, when they came to Australia. The Crimson Idol album was going to be played in its entirety. I remember walking out of the Iron Maiden shows (I went to both of those shows) on the Caught Somewhere Back In Time tour, and people where handing out flyers for the WASP shows. I took one, spoke about it with the people I was with and then did nothing. Maybe I was just burnt out from the Maiden shows and wasn’t interested in going or maybe I was broke. I don’t even remember the reasons. The people I was with, have heard of WASP but never heard The Crimson Idol. I was amazed.
Blackie covers the recording business in this song. Chainsaw Charlie is the “the president of showbiz” who is just looking for the next raw talent that he can exploit. Back in 1991, you never really got to hear stories about the labels and how they treated artists. The bottom line was that if an artist wanted to be heard, they needed a label behind them.
“Sign right here on the dotted line, it’s the one you’ve waited for all of your life”
That is how it was. Artists worked hard to get a record deal. In The Crimson Idol story Charlie (the record label honcho) is saying that to Jonathon (the wannabe Idol).
“We’ll sell ya wholesale, we’ll sell your soul
Strap on your six string and feed our machine”
It’s basically the hidden fine print in the deal. The labels owned the artist. They owned their image. They owned the music. They would do whatever it takes to make as much money from the artist as they could. As our access to information has become greater with the rise of the internet, we are now seeing more and more people talk about the creative accounting of the labels.
Def Leppard are doing forgeries of their own songs, in order to circumvent a blockade put up by their label due to a breakdown in the negotiations to the digital rights of the back catalogue.
Eminem took his label to court and won, over the way iTunes payments are treated compared to album physical sales.
Don Henley is going to Court against his old label, to reclaim the Copyrights to his songs due to a clause that the labels are trying to remove, that states after 35 years, the Copyrights of songs are transferred back to the original creator.
By The Night Flight Orchestra, from Internal Affairs (2012)
I love this song. It’s got that Deuce feel from Kiss, which was a Rolling Stone bass riff played backwards, so you can say it has that Rolling Stones feel as well. I really like what The Night Flight Orchestra did with their 2012 release. Bringing back the seventies style of music into the NOW.
It’s that slide guitar at the end, that makes me feel like I am catching a wave on a hot summers day. It reminds of Fox On The Run by Sweet and Do Ya from Electric Light Orchestra. It comes in after the lyric line, “I left my heart in L.A.
Even the name The Night Flight Orchestra is a combination of a Led Zeppelin song called Night Flight and the Electric Light Orchestra band name.
The retro style vibe captured by modern recording technology fitted in perfectly as song number 2 behind Chainsaw Charlie from WASP.
We never said a word about it
We knew it wasn’t meant to be
By Ozzy Osbourne, from Blizzard Of Ozz (1980) – Remastered Version
I’ve listened to preachers
I’ve listened to fools
I’ve watched all the dropouts
Who make their own rules
Randy Rhoads wrote my bible. The Tribute tab book that I purchased was my bible. I learned every note, every lick and every riff. It’s impact was monumental to my guitar playing. It’s funny how history has been rewritten to show this as an Ozzy Osbourne solo album. However, the guys in the band at the time, always believed that it was a band called Blizzard of Ozz.
I grew up listening to people tell me what I need to do. Teachers, instructors, parents, friends or brothers, always leading me onto a path that they want me on. It was a push and shove society. That is why I fell into rock and metal music in general. They wrote the anthems that I could relate to. We’re Not Gonna Take It and I Wanna Rock from Twisted Sister are two songs that come to mind immediately.
Then as time goes by I see all the drop kicks, the ones that everyone said would be unemployed, working for themselves. Some went into the entertainment business and began changing the world with the music/movies they create. And here I am, woodshedding 24/7 to become a guitar god on a music style that killed itself.
Caught In The Middle
By Stryper, from Against The Law (1990)
You’ve been working hard
Trying to make your life appealing
Two simple sentences. That is why we are slaves to the system. We believe that by working hard, we will get richer, we will get promoted and that we will have a better life. What a load of B.S.? My father worked his whole life at the steel mill, and he worked hard. The job was enough to pay the mortgage, pay the bills and keep the wheels turning in everyday life. So my father worked a second job, so that he can make his life appealing. Then when it came to retirement, he was forced into it, by his loving employer.
By Stone Sour, from Come What(ever) May (2006)
This fluid feels like pain
This stoic mood is all in vain
I reach into the dark
I tear the sun and me apart
How many years ago
How many deaths I can’t let go
My flesh is temporary, my God extraordinary
Corey Taylor had a past that involved alcoholism and drug overdoses. These lyrics are depressing as hell. In the end, we are all our own worst enemies. We put so much pressure on ourselves, it’s no wonder that we all break down and end up overdosing on something. How biblical is the last line, the flesh is temporary but our legacy will live on forever in the people that speak it.
Caustic Are The Ties That Bind
By Trivium, from In Waves (2011)
Can you help me find my way
I’ve been lost for so long
I don’t even know where it went wrong
When I first heard Caustic, I saw it as a cut down version of Shogun. It is a Trivium classic and a song that will be part of their set list for a long time to come. I woke up one morning, and I was in a place where I should never be. It was in a hospital room, with a busted eye and a shattered foot. Where did it all go wrong? Was I lost for that long, that I lost my way in life. It’s very easy to do, especially when you don’t believe that nothing is wrong. It’s a lesson learnt. What doesn’t kill me can only make me stronger.
How fitting that this song is like the album closer of this morning drive.