The Angels – Live Line
There was a period in Australian music when “The Angels” ruled. Their brand of punk rock, merged with New Wave and hard rock, connected with all kinds of audiences.
I never owned any of their music, just the video clips which I taped from the music TV stations and a few taped cassettes. I taped this cassette from one of my brothers friends who was a DJ for parties and most of the parties back then played hard rock songs.
Coming in 1987, its sandwiched between my two favourite albums, 1986’s “Howling” and 1990’s “Beyond Salvation”.
In Australia, it charted high and The Angels did a massive tour to support the live album with a three hour, An Evening With concept.
Alice Cooper – Raise Your Fist And Yell
King Diamond – Fatal Portrait
“Freedom” and “Time To Kill” are two songs which stood out for me. They had that blend of Alice Cooper 70’s Anthems and 80’s MTV Hard Rock. And what a band Alice Cooper had, with future Winger bandmates Winger and Paul Taylor on bass and keys, future House Of Lords drummer Ken Mary, and Kane Roberts on guitar.
For King Diamond, I was on an Andy LaRocque phase. This is the debut solo album for King Diamond and it has Michael Denner from Mercyful Fate as well on guitars.
Blank Title Mix Tape
This tape was done to get me out of a musical rut. My line of thinking went something like this;
- Put all these different style of songs on a tape.
- Listen to it and my song writing will change.
So there is some variation in the song but it’s all still rock and metal.
Boston – Amanda
This song took me by surprise and made me realise, what a good song it is.
Judas Priest – Blood Red Skies
From the “Ram It Down’ album, it’s my favourite cut.
That acoustic intro, it brings back memories of Scorpions, Accept and Crimson Glory. Halford vocally and melodically is brilliant.
Then at 1.44 it goes into this “Turbo” feel. Which is not surprising as the song was meant to be part of the Turbo double album that the label stopped.
Heart – All I Wanna Do Is Make Love To You
I had a Mutt Lange phase.
I couldn’t believe the amount of hits this dude was writing or involved in, so I was trying to listen to em as much of em as possible.
He wrote this song in the 70’s as a normal love song for Don Henley and it was recorded by a different artist called Dobie Gray. He then updated the lyrics about “an affair to conceive a baby” in the 90’s and this is Heart’s version, released in 1994.
Heart have abandoned the song, refusing to play it live as vocalist Ann Wilson hated the message in the song, but the band were under pressure by the label to do it.
Asia – Only Time Will Tell
From their 1982 debut album, written by John Wetton and Geoff Downes.
MSG – I’m Gonna Make You Mine
From “Built To Destroy”, released in 1983, written by Andy Nye, Michael Schenker, Gary Barden and Ted McKenna.
Tygers Of Pang Tang – Mirror
This is a John Sykes cut from “Spellbound” released in 1981. It closes side 1 and it’s one of those cuts that makes you press repeat.
Europe – Ninja
Released in 1986, it closes Side 1.
The same side which has “The Final Countdown”, “Rock The Night” and “Carrie”.
The lead guitar melody in the intro and in the Chorus is what hooks me.
Keel – The Right To Rock
Released in 1985 and produced by Gene Simmons.
Ron Keel did everything at ten, but it’s the AC/DC like riff in the intro that gets me to pay attention. And then I heard the first two lines of the 1st verse, “all my life I’ve been fighting for the right to make my stand”.
And I was in.
MSG – Desert Song
One of my favourite Schenker songs, with the carbon copy riff from “Love To Love”.
Keel – United Nations
Released in 1987 and produced by Michael Wagener. Ron keel did everything at ten take 2 but it’s that harmony guitar intro which hooked me in again.
And the label they were on, just didn’t know how to market the band and this album would be the last to feature both Marc Ferrari and Bryan Jay on guitars.
WASP – The Real Me
It’s a cover from The Who and WASP do an excellent job, capturing the craziness of Moon on the drums and Entwistle on the bass.
Scorpions – Don’t Stop At The Top
From 1988 and their “Savage Amusement” album.
A great intro and a brilliant first verse.
“You never take the easy way, the wind is blowing straight into your face” is covering the resilience self-help industry.
“There’s no risk that you’re not taking, not a mountain that’s too high, spread your wings, you’re gonna make it to the best time of your life” covers the perseverance self-help industry.
Why buy a 300 page book from an Harvard grad, when the Scorpions have it all for you.
And the lead breaks from Rarebell are the breaks of guitar heroes.
Black Sabbath – Children Of The Sea
From 1980 and the excellent “Heaven And Hell” album.
The many different movements from the acoustic intro to the doomy guitar riff about humanity being the lost children of the sea.
Whitesnake – Blindman
It appeared on a Whitesnake album called “Ready An’ Willing” in 1980, but it was released on David Coverdale’s solo album, called ”The White Snake” in 1977.
One of my favourite Whitesnake songs, done as a power ballad but the way power ballads were done in the 70’s.
Heart – Who Will You Run To
From “Bad Animals” released in 1985 and written by Diane Warren. It was overshadowed by the power ballad “Alone”,
Lita Ford – Falling In And Out Of Love
Released in 1988 on the “Lita” album and co-written with Nikki Sixx. The music, the vocal melodies and the guitar leads are all perfect.
And I was all in.
MSG – Follow The Night
This was the last throw of the dice for the label.
The album “Perfect Timing” was released in 1987. The production was a typical 80’s glam/hair metal production, instead of his normal UFO/British production from the previous albums. The Choruses were all big AOR attempts so the songs could chart.
But I am a Schenker fan because of his guitar playing and when he has a song that makes me pick up the guitar to learn it, I am in.
RUSH – Afterimage
From “Grace Under Pressure” released in 1984. Apart from the music capturing me, the lyrics from Peart about the death of a friend sealed the deal.
Sanctuary- Future Tense
A monster of a song.
It starts off doomy like Black Sabbath, before it builds into a metal tune.
And the lyrics. Check em out.
What do you see on the news when you watch T.V.
War in the name of God, or a playground killing spree
Has anything changed since 1990.
Politicians promise you the world, and a preacher cries
All he ever wanted was your money, and a bitch on the side
What went wrong? Did society twist him?
There is a saying that society does twist everyone as no one is born to hate, steal and lie. Those seeds are implanted. It’s like the saying, everyone is born to win and raised to lose.
What do you see in the centre of the public eye
Rock stars on smack, and a serial killer fries
The media reports what will get eyeballs. Feel-good stories don’t get eyeballs like the train wrecked lifestyles of the rich and famous.
Radicals blame suicide and murder on our form of art
Brainwash the youth, you know they claim we all play a part
What a shame that they can’t think for themselves
Remember that 80’s Satanic Panic and all the court cases that came out of it. Judas Priest and Ozzy got taken to court because of it.
And the band was pressured to change their musical style from metal to grunge by the label. But bassist Jim Sheppard and vocalist Warrel Dane did not agree and they would go on to form Nevermore, which they kept running for 17 years plus before they returned to Sanctuary.
And they released the excellent “The Year The Sun Died” in 2014.
And then Warrel Dane died from a heart attack in 2017, while he was recording a follow up to his first solo album, “Praises To The War Machine” which was released in 2008. This album “Shadow Work” came out in 2018 but it wasn’t done properly, as it was completed using vocals from various studio and pre-production sessions.
Keel – The Final Frontier
Released in 1986 and produced by Gene Simmons. Remember Ron Keel operates at an intensity of 10.
Magellan – Test For Wills
Angra – Fireworks
My cousin who was into Death Metal, was also in Thrash Metal, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, Power Metal, Progressive Rock/Metal.
Basically he was into everything distorted and he had the dollars to purchase.
So he was my filter.
He recommended these two albums to me, but I don’t recall anything from em.