Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories

The Record Vault – AC/DC

You didn’t need to own an AC/DC album to like them or to be a fan. If you went into a pub, the jukebox played em. If you watched live bands, they would cover em. If you watched music television, they would be on it. If you went to a mates home, they would be playing em. If you went driving in a car, they would be on the stereo. In other words, AC/DC was everywhere in Australia.

AC/DC tickets would be snapped up by fans who didn’t even own an AC/DC album. So the next time you hear a label boss or a musician who had a deal pre-Napster say, “sales of recorded music = fans”, call them on their bullshit.

I’ve had mix tapes of my favorites from their Bon Scott and Brian Johnson eras on TDK cassettes.

I’ve had full albums dubbed on cassettes and VHS tapes with their video clips. All recorded from friends and relatives and TV.

Flick Of The Switch

It’s a solid album, coming out after their U.S breakthrough “Highway To Hell” album in 1979, the mega selling “Back In Black” from 1980 and it’s 1981 successor “For Those About To Rock”.

Personnel changes happened as well. Simon Wright is in the drummers’ chair but Phil Rudd played on the album, Mutt Lange was also out as Malcolm felt the band was getting over produced and their manager Peter Mensch was also out.

So when the band takes back some control, what do you get?

A live and raw version of AC/DC. There are no classic songs or hits on the album. But there is a lot of groove and swagger. The slower tempo’s make it sound HEAVY. Hell, bands like Corrosion of Conformity built careers off these kinds of grooves. But the songs don’t get played live, so the album remains largely forgotten to the masses.

Here is a review I totally agree with from BuriedOnMars.

And here is another review I agree with from Deke over at Thunder Bay.

Let There Be Rock

I know “Back In Black” is the highest seller in the catalogue, but man, this album and “High Voltage” are victory lap recordings. Look at any set list and you will see these songs on it.

Go Down

Bon Scott is singing about Ruby and Mary licking that licking stick.

Dog Eat Dog

Bon Scott always had a social and political angle in his lyrics.

Business man when you make a deal
Do you know who you can trust
Do you sign your life away
Do you write your name in dust

Dealing with people in the music industry is like signing your life away. If you make it, these business people will then make money of your songs, your image and when all the crowds move on, they leave you in the dumpster to pick up the pieces.

Dog eat dog
Read the news
Someone win
Someone lose

These days, the news is the social media feed. We are surrounded by people with the best holiday shot, the best party shot, the best beach shot, lunch shot and so on. Everyone portrays an image of being a winner. And if someone is watching a winner, it must mean they are a loser.

See the blind man on the street
Lookin’ for somethin’ free
Hear the kind man ask his friend
Hey, what’s in it for me

We are more wealthy today than ever before, but 70% of that wealth is with the top 1%. So while you get people living from pay to pay helping out and volunteering, the ones who have the means to make a difference, do nothing, create their own charity as a tax dodge and make it look like they are doing something.

Let There Be Rock

That riff that kicks it off. It’s speed rock, it’s simple and I love it.

In the beginning
Back in nineteen fifty five
Man didn’t know ’bout a rock ‘n’ roll show
And all that jive
The white man had the schmaltz
The black man had the blues
No one knew what they was gonna do
But Tchaikovsky had the news

Bon is framing a picture of a time when rock and roll was born and referencing Chuck Berry and his track “Roll Over Beethoven”.

And it came to pass
That rock ‘n’ roll was born
All across the land every rockin’ band
Was blowin’ up a storm
And the guitar man got famous
The business man got rich
And in every bar there was a superstar
With a seven year itch

Bon is capturing the essence and excitement of rock and roll when it came to the youth of the 60s.

One night in the club called the shakin’ hand
There was a 42 decibel rockin’ band
And the music was good and the music was loud
And the singer turned and he said to the crowd
Let there be rock

And there was rock alright. I remember every album I purchased in the 80s had a song title in the list that mentioned rock.

Bad Boy Boogie

On the day I was born the rain fell down
There was trouble brewin’ in my home town
It was the seventh day I was the seventh son
And it scared the hell out of every one
They said stop
I said go
They said fast
I said slow
They said yes
I said no
I do the bad boy boogie

Religion and belief in the Bible as truth is massive all over the world. Bon knew how to frame his lyrics with enough rebellion for it to connect with a generation who more or less had similar devout upbringings.

Problem Child

What I want I take
What I don’t I break
And I don’t want you
With a flick of my knife
I can change your life
There’s nothing you can do
I’m a problem child, yes I am

Scott lived for the moment.

Overdose

I overdosed on you
I overdosed on you
Crazy but it’s true
Ain’t nothin’ I can do
I overdosed on you

If a current pop artist had the above lines in a Chorus it would be a hit.

Hell Ain’t A Bad Place To Be

Spends my money
Drinks my booze
Stays out every night
But I got to thinkin’
Hey, just a minute
Somethin’ ain’t right

If Bon was a problem child, what about the women in his life, who spent his money and drank his booze.

Whole Lotta Rosie

What hasn’t been said about Rosie, about a whole lotta woman who knows how to rule the bed. But it’s the call and response of the intro riff which hooks me.

For Those About To Rock

For Those About To Rock (We Salute You)

The way the guitars start it off, man, what can I say. It’s perfect.

Stand up and be counted for what you are about to receive
We are the dealers
We’ll give you everything you need
Hail hail to the good times
Cos rock has got the right of way
We ain’t no legends ain’t no cause
We’re just livin’ for today
For those about to rock, we salute you

And that’s how Rock was, a lifestyle of living for today, going to the show and allowing the music to surround you.

I Put The Finger In You

Again, I love the intro musically. The lyrics about fingers on fire being out of control is whatever, but the music…

Evil Walks

It’s got that “Hells Bells” influenced intro. And a verse riff from the chorus of “Sweet Home Alabama”.

Ball breaker 95 Tour Booklet

I didn’t own the album. A friend of mine had it on CD and I copied it off him.

And when the tour rolled into town, it was a no brainer to go.

They kicked off with a 1-2-3 knockout combo with “Back In Black”, “Shot Down In Flames” and “Thunderstruck”.

“Girls Got Rhythm”, “Hard As A Rock”, “Shoot To Thrill” and “Boogie Man” came next.

“Hail Caeser”, “Hells Bells”, “The Jack”, “Ballbreaker”, “Rock and Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution”, “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap”, “You Shook Me All Night Long”, “Whole Lotta Rosie”, “TNT” and “Let There Be Rock” finished the set off.

For encore, they did “Highway To Hell” and finished off with “For Those About To Rock”.

Fire.

Blow Up Your Video

“Heatseeker”, the video clip was everywhere on music television, in the same way “Who Made Who” was still doing the rounds and “Sink The Pink” was also doing the rounds, along with “Hells Bells” and “You Shook Me All Night Long”.

It’s one of the main reasons why we didn’t need to own the albums. We felt like we heard enough of em. And music television in the 80’s had the ability to reach a lot of people and as a by product make a lot of money for the labels.

“That’s The Way I Wanna Rock ‘ N’ Roll” was released as a single, however “Heatseeker” was doing a decent job taking all the limelight, this little ditty got ignored.

Told boss man where to go
Turned off my brain control
That’s the way I want my rock and roll

There it is again, the call to arms of “no one can tell us what to do”. We will not be used and we will not allow the people in power to control us. But the people in power and with wealth do control us.

“Two’s Up” has a super melodic Chorus riff and a tapping guitar solo by Angus.

High Voltage

Bon Scott wrote lyrics that resonated with his audience and this album is full of great lines.

“It’s A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘N’ Roll)”

Ridin’ down the highway
Goin’ to a show
Stop in all the byways
Playin’ rock ‘n’ roll
Gettin’ robbed
Gettin’ stoned
Gettin’ beat up
Broken boned
Gettin’ had
Gettin’ took
I tell you folks
It’s harder than it looks

Australia is huge. To travel east to west in a plane, it will take 5 hours. By car, a lot longer. AC/DC didn’t just conquer their region, they conquered all of Australia, by playing shows in every state and city. They even played Tasmania, which is a state everyone ignores.

It’s a long way to the top if you wanna rock ‘n’ roll
If you think it’s easy doin’ one night stands
Try playin’ in a rock roll band
It’s a long way to the top if you wanna rock ‘n’ roll

Remember it, and to add that rock and roll is a lifers game.

Hotel motel
Make you wanna cry
Lady do the hard sell
Know the reason why
Gettin’ old
Gettin’ grey
Gettin’ ripped off
Under-paid
Gettin’ sold
Second hand
That’s how it goes
Playin’ in a band

Getting ripped off and being a musician go hand in hand. There are always people looking to make a buck from the hard work of artists.

Rock ‘N’ Roll Singer

My Daddy was workin’ nine to five
When my Momma was havin’ me
By the time I was half alive
They knew what I was gonna be
But I left school and grew my hair
They didn’t understand
They wanted me to be respected as
A doctor or a lawyer man
(But I had other plans)

It’s the rebellion against authority which hooked people in. Back then, your parents didn’t hang with you. They were your enemy.

Parents always have plans for their children and I’ve seen first hand, how those plans have broken their children, mentally and emotionally. I’m a parent and all I have for my kids is support and guidance if they want it.

Gonna be a rock ‘n’ roll singer
Gonna be a rock ‘n’ roll star
Gonna be a rock ‘n’ roll singer
I’m gonna be a rock ‘n’ roll,
A rock ‘n’ roll star

Some wanted to be a rock and roll singer once upon a time and when MTV brought the rock starts into the lounge room, then everyone wanted to be one.

These days, kids are gonna be a tech billionaire, or a sell n trade broker. Imagine the lyrics with those words.

Gonna be a sell ‘n’ trade broker
Gonna be a tech billionaire
Gonna be a sell ‘n’ trade broker

It just doesn’t have the same rebellion as rock and roll. In fact, being a broker and a techie is following the status quo and confirming to what the current corporations in power want.

Well I worked real hard and bought myself
A rock ‘n’ roll guitar
I gotta be on top some day
I wanna be a star
I can see my name in lights
And I can see the queue
I got the devil in my blood
Tellin’ me what to do
(And I’m all ears)

There’s nothing else except the dream. From reading the bios of rock stars it’s a lonely journey in reality. As you ascend the ladder, people who were there at the beginning are replaced by different people with questionable motives.

Well you can stick your nine to five livin’
And your collar and your tie
You can stick your moral standards
‘Cause it’s all a dirty lie
You can stick your golden handshake
And you can stick your silly rules
And all the other shit
That you teach to kids in school

There are no moral standards in Corporations and Governments. Everyone is on the take. And kids these days are taught by people who just read from a curriculum, and are not interested to go the extra to ensure that what they are teaching is understood. And those curriculums are changed regularly to suit a certain interest group.

Did you know that the RIAA and MPAA lobbied hard to get Copyright and how breaking Copyright is stealing to be taught at primary schools?

Yep they did and not one parent even blinked an eye, as they fired up their uTorrent and kept breaking Copyright.

The Jack

But how was I to know
That she’d been dealt with before
Said she’d never had a Full House
But I should have known

She’s got the jack, she’s got the jack

This is classic Bon, using a deck of cards analogy for a sexually transmitted disease.

But how was I to know
That she’d been shuffled before
Said she’d never had a Royal Flush
But I should have known

Brilliant. Even comedic. How many did she have?

T.N.T.

Oi, oi, oi, oi, oi, oi, oi

A street alley chant is a great way to start. And when you add the simple Em to G to A riff, it’s perfect.

Cause I’m T.N.T., I’m dynamite
(T.N.T.) and I’ll win the fight
(T.N.T.) I’m a power load
(T.N.T.) watch me explode

High Voltage

Well you ask me ’bout the clothes I wear
And you ask me why I grow my hair
And you ask me why I’m in a band
I dig doin’ one night stands
And you wanna see me do my thing
All you gotta do is plug me into high
I said high

High voltage rock ‘n’ roll

There ya go folks, get into a band, fuck a lot and play live.

Family Jewels DVD

This is a great DVD package, a bonafide best off.

And my “Back In Black” LP and cassette is also missing, suffering the same fate as “Disturbing The Peace” from Alcatrazz and “Permanent Vacation” from Aerosmith.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories

The Record Vault – Alcatrazz

The Alcatrazz story is much deeper than Malmsteen’s and Vai’s brief appearances.

Like a lot of other bands in the 80’s it was a pseudo supergroup of musicians. You had a 20 year old guitar hero in Yngwie Malmsteen, a 30 year old experienced bassist in Gary Shea, a 33 year old experienced drummer in Jan Uvena, a 24 year old keyboardist in Jimmy Waldo and a 35 year old vocalist with major label experience in Graham Bonnet.

The story starts with bassist Gary Shea and keyboardist Jimmy Waldo. After their band “New England” lost their singer, they moved out to L.A to work with an unknown guitarist at the time, called Vinnie Vincent and a new band called Warrior. Vinnie Vincent also had a deal in place to co-write songs for Kiss. ‘Boyz Gonna Rock” and “I Love It Loud” actually appeared on the first Warrior demo.

On the strength of that demo and the songs that Vinnie had written, he was of course asked to join KISS.

And from the ashes of Warrior, Alcatrazz was formed. With a dodgy manager on board, who took royalties meant for the band into his own pocket, Alcatrazz was a go. Shea actually reckons Malmsteen lost a lot of money when he left due to the thievery of their manager.

Alcatrazz – No Parole from Rock N’ Roll

I dubbed this album on cassette from a former co-guitarist and eventually purchased it via a second hand record shop.

Today we would be classed as pirates for sharing but back then music was expensive and if someone had the opportunity to share music, they would.

Island In The Sun

It’s the opening track and an underrated Malmsteen classic with a E major riff full of open string palm muting, legato lines, slides and single notes.

Jet To Jet

That Bm riff which kicks the song of is a perfect example of Malmsteen referencing his Blackmore roots. Think “Burn” and “Highway Star”.

In the verses I also like how he chromatically goes down from a “B” to a “B flat” to an “A” to an open “E” and building it up again via a “F sharp”, “G” and “A”.

Hiroshima Mon Amour

Bonnet was inspired by the 1959 French film Hiroshima Mon Amour, which he had seen in school.

When you read about the fall out and the cancers still happening today, you get to understand the gravity of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and how generations of people have been affected.

The riff is heavy, switching from Bm to F#m, as it references the “Lights Out” riff from Michael Schenker in his UFO days.

Too Young To Die, Too Drunk To Live

It’s a brilliant riff by Malmsteen which again references his Blackmore influences.

Blackmore is renowned for picking a root note and then playing its octave. Then again so was Jimi Hendrix and this riff is in F#m, the same key as “Foxy Lady”. Then again so was Jimmy Page, especially in “Immigrant Song” which is also in F#m. It’s how music is written. By being influenced.

Alcatrazz – Live Sentence

I picked this up on vinyl at a record fair in the 90s. I enjoyed listening to it and hearing Malmsteen before he became the fury.

Musically, Malmsteen brings it.

There are a few Rainbow songs like “Since You’ve Been Gone”, “All Night Long” and “Lost In Hollywood” plus a cool cover of Michael Shenker’s “Desert Song”. The last two mentioned songs are not on the vinyl version.

And of course, Malmsteen is the star here, so he gets to introduce “Evil Eye”, an instrumental song which would appear on his debut album.

I also had “Disturbing The Peace” on vinyl, however the same mystery disappearance that befell “Permanent Vacation” from Aerosmith has befallen “Disturbing The Peace”.

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Copyright, Derivative Works, Music, My Stories

The Right To Use A Song

Artists have fans from all sides of the political debate, from all sides of religion and from all different races.

It’s okay to take money from fans for concert tickets, recorded product and merchandise who support a political party you don’t support or fans who believe in a religion you don’t believe in.

But when a political figure plays music at a rally or releases their own Spotify playlist for sharing, artists decide its time to take a moral stance, asking said politician to stop playing their music at rallies or to remove their song from their Spotify playlist.

It happens in Australia and it happens in other countries as well.

If the artist creates art for public consumption, why do they get upset if people use it publicly, especially when all of the Copyright licenses are satisfied.

I’m not a Trump supporter or the Australian version of Trump, Clive Palmer. But both of em have used “We’re Not Gonna Take It” from Twisted Sister as part of their campaigns. Trump at rallies and Palmer in an ad, with the lyrics “Australia’s not gonna cop it” to music from “We’re Not Gonna Take It” in a different key.

There is no chance in hell that fans of Dee Snider or Twisted Sister would think that they endorse Palmer. It never occurred to me at all.

Dee and Jay Jay might not like it, but Copyright was never meant to be about censoring other people especially if the normal licenses are paid.

And the main issue which no one addresses is how Copyright has developed into a right to censor people and prosecute people.

And of course, in typical Palmer fashion he slammed Dee Snider, saying that he owns the Copyright to the words he wrote, and that Dee is trying to generate publicity to sell tickets to his Aussie shows.

I guess Palmer has no idea how Dee follows things through or who is messing with, because if anyone is not going to take it, it’s Dee.

And one last thought, who is going to ensure that the artists words are not misused after they are departed as Copyright does extend 70 years after death (with the MPAA and RIAA pushing for 90 years after death)?

Based on current trends, no one will, because as long as a fee is paid to the heirs, their lawyers and the Corporation who holds the rights, it will be allowed.

In the end Copyright was always meant to give an artist an incentive to create, not to censor, regardless if they agree or disagree with the people using their material.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

2018 – III – The Year We Have Known Is Gone

Here is the final wrap of 2018. Have a safe break and see ya all in the new year.

Click on the playlist here.

I Am The One
We Got Tonite
Outloud

What can I say, I’m a sucker for melodic rock.

You Can’t Take Me Down
Playing With Fire
Dream Child

Craig Goldy’s little project is doing okay. People are interested, let’s see what comes next.

Lover, Leaver
Greta Van Fleet

They finally dropped an album and its selling, their previous EP is selling and people are listening. The only way is up. It’s up to them.

Self-Inflicted Wounds
Joe Bonamassa

From his “Redemption” album. On each album, there is always a track or two that connects with me.

Oblivion
Stratovarius

Can’t say I’m a fan of the band, but this song is good.

The whole Unheavenly Creatures album.
Coheed and Cambria

Read my review of it here.

Royal Beggars
Hereafter
A Wasted Hymn
Architects

Sometimes the vocal screaming gets to me, but in these three songs it’s a good mix of emotions and musically there is a lot to unpack.

The whole Firesign album.
Dynazty

Check out my review here.

The One You Loved Is Gone
Slash, Myles Kennedy And The Conspirators

Read my review here.

Are You Ready
The Best Ones Lie
Disturbed

These two are the best on the album and ignore the rest.

All The Time In The World
Whitesnake

From the surprise “Unzipped” album.

As I Fall
Afterlife
After Midnight
Andy James

Great instrumental guitar playing.

Hold The Line
Bonfire

From their “Legends” album covering a classic song that I used to cover in bands.

Swallow
I Am Fuel
Panoptical
Sons Of War
The End Will Begin Again
Thieves and Legend
Days Of Jupiter

Every era has a band that sounds similar to a famous band and then end up overtaking the band that influenced them in songwriting and risk taking.

In this case Days Of Jupiter runs rings around Disturbed but Disturbed is the one with the popularity.

Threatening War
Far Below
White Mist
Shed A Light
The Pineapple Thief

From their “Dissolution” album which is their twelfth album. Yep, you read that correct. Album number twelve and I’m hearing about the band for the first time.

It’s the way of our world know and it takes time to rise above the static noise. Just be patient and remember, music is a lifers game.

I’m A Ratt
Stephen Pearcy

From his “View To A Thrill” album. This song sounds like the ratt and roll that Robin Crosby used to bring to RATT.

First Time
Aftermath
Freedom
Long Shot
Royal Tusk

I was taken by surprise by “Tusk II”. It’s more rockier, even metal at certain times and the lyrics are more angrier.

Just Tell Me Something (featuring Danny Worsnop)
All That Remains

From their “Victims Of The New World” album. It’s the first song that stood out to me and demanded I press repeat.

What will happen to the band remains to be seen.

The Messenger
Circles

From “The Last One” album.

They are from Australia and ead this review of the album, as I totally agree with it and feel no need to further elaborate. http://www.heavyblogisheavy.com/2018/08/29/circles-the-last-one/

Life On Titan
Vault Of Heaven
Voices From The Fuselage

Ashe from TesseracT is back with his pre-TesseracT band.

Mayday
Digital Summer

A fully independent band who control their own destiny. They have been releasing singles from a forthcoming album in between jobs as paramedics and raising kids.

The Clincher – Version 103
Chevelle

From their “12 Bloody Spies: B Sides and Rarities” album. The vocal feel hooks me in.

Without You I’m Nothing
Rockin With The Boys
Bronx Boy
Mission To Mars
Ace Frehley

From his “Spaceman” album. Read Deke’s review over at Thunder Bay.

And that’s it. 2018 is a wrap. See ya next year.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories

Henrik’s Spotify List

Here is the playlist.

Henrik is a regular reader and commenter of this blog and a week ago he shared his Top 100 Spotify list for 2018.

Well, like all things that deal with music, I had to give it a listen, especially when I saw his number one was from a band I’ve never heard of. It’s always cool to see similar musical tastes/songs in other people’s playlists and it’s even cooler to be introduced to bands I have never heard before.

So after listening to the playlist, here are my selections of Henrik’s Top 100 Spotify List.

John Carpenter Powder Ballad
Turbonegro
From the album “Rock N Roll Machine”.

It’s the first time I’ve heard the song and the band. And its good. Don’t know how the band name would go down in the U.S, but hey from reading their Wikipedia page it looks like they like to push the political correctness debates.

For me, I’m a fan and the last minute of the song, makes me want to press repeat.

Hot For Nietzsche
Turbonegro
From the album “Rock and Roll Machine”

I dig all the references to “The Who” and so many other bands I like.

No Surrender
Judas Priest
From the Firepower album.

This was on my list as well.

In The Heat Of The Night
Make The Move

U.D.O
From the Steelfactory album.

U.D.O is hit and miss for me, but these songs have riffs and grooves too good to refuse. Especially, “Make The Move” which has a riff and vocal feel, very similar to a certain Beatsie Boys song called “Fight For Your Right To Party”.

Mess You Made
Only Human

Vega
From the Only Human album.

I’m interested, clicked on follow and we will see what the band does next.

Black Smoke Rising
Safari Song

Greta Van Fleet
From the “From The Fires” album.

Their path is like Led Zep. Coming out around 1968/2018 with a folk hard rock sound and tweaking it as they move into the 1970’s/2020’s.

Walk In The Shadows
Queensryche
From the “Rage For Order” album.

The song that made sense on this album on the first listen. The rest of the album took some time to digest, but this one was easy.

Dance Macabre
Ghost
From the “Prequelle” album.

It’s also in my 100.

Perfect Storm
Breathless

Volster
From the “Perfect Storm” album.

The first time i heard this band. And I clicked save on the songs and I also follow the band.

Distance
My Allied Ocean

Evergrey
From the “Storm Within” album.

These appeared on my list for 2017, and “Distance” also appeared in 2018.

A new album will drop in 2019, so expect to see Evergrey in my list next year.

This Time
Sometimes The World Aint Enough

The Night Flight Orchestra
From the “Sometimes The World Aint Enough” album.

These are also on my list.

Life On Death Road
Jorn
from the “Life On Death Road” album.

The riff is brilliant, and those outro leads make me press repeat.

Suite Sister Mary
Queensryche
From the “Operation Mindcrime” album.

I haven’t heard this in a long time.

Those voices/choirs remind me of the “Omen” movies. So powerful and it takes the song into the stratosphere.

Bark At The Moon
Ozzy Osbourne
From the “Bark At The Moon”

Here is the classic riff that Ozzy wrote with one finger on a piano while Jake E.Lee watched.

And that outro lead. I guess Ozzy’s finger moved really fast to write it and then show Jake E. Lee.

This is the bullshit of music copyright and how people with money and status can fuck up the real writers, in this case Bob Daisley and Jake E. Lee.

Quicksand Jesus
Skid Row
From the “Slave To The Grind” album.

One of the best Skid Row songs, especially when Sebastian Bach takes it to another level with his Bridge and Outro vocals. This is also on my lists of 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Fuel The Fire
One More Round

Bullet
From the album “Dust To Gold”.

I swear i thought i was listening to Keel singing. And to be honest, it’s the vocals that stop me from getting into it.

Fool On Fire
One Million Miles

Babylon A.D
From the album “Revelation Highway”.

“Fool On Fire” is not my favaourite as I prefered other songs over this one. But still cool to see Babylon A.D on another listeners list.

On the other hand, “One Million Miles” is up there as a sleeper classic.

The Art Of Loss
Redemption
From the album “The Art Of Loss”.

Any song that starts off with sweep picking, alternate picking scalar runs and a wicked beat/riff under it, is up there in my book.

Hope Dies Last
Redemption
From the album “The Art Of Loss”.

You need to be in the mood to sink your teeth into a 10 minute song. This one is also a favourite of mine, because it feels like a Fates Warning song.

And that section from about the 5.50 minute mark to the 6.10 minute mark is finger breaking stuff.

Master Of The Universe
Man Behind The Gun
Cool Runnin’

Palace

Never heard of the band before, however there sound is up there with the melodic rock i dig. I’m interested, what comes next is up to the band.

Show Dont Tell
Rush
From the album “Presto”.

No Rush made it to my list this year, but man, there was a big Rush period between 94 and 2004 for me.

I remember this song well, sitting down to learn the riffs, the feel and the groove.

And those open chord voicings from Alex Lifeson are perfect. A true master at simplicity and yet it sounds complicated.

Breathe With Me
In The Arms Of A Devil

Dynazty
From the album “Firesign”.

Yep, these ones are on my list as well. And those guitar solos, its guitar hero stuff. Sweep picking, string skipping, legato lines, bends, tapping, alternate picking. It’s got everything.

Break Down The Wall
Stone Fury

Ahh yes, Lenny Wolf’s German band before his U.S band, Kingdom Come conquered the world with their Led Zep influences and then when interviewers questioned them, they told everyone they have never heard of Led Zep. It’s okay to say you are influenced by others, it’s how music works.

This song is perfect melodic rock and you can more or less hear the embryo of Kingdom Come’s melodic side right here. I actually have it in a Kingdom Come playlist and it’s not out of place.

For The Love Of God
Bellevue Suite

Another new band to sink my teeth into.

Let It Go
Def Leppard
From the “High N Dry” album.

When you hear Def Leppard’s earlier songs, you get to hear the metal and rock ethos they started out with and this rock and metal spirit would sustain them.

This song rocks as hard as any song that came out during this period, but the embryo of those multi-layered vocals that took “Hysteria” to millions in sales are here.

Face It
Grand Design
From the album “Viva La Paradise”

Man, i really dig the music and the melodies, but the tone of the helium vocals is too much.

Take Hold Of The Flame
Queensryche
From “The Warning”

You can hear the embryo of the ‘Operation Mindcrime” album in this song.

The Warning
En Force

Queensryche
From “The Warning”

Two classic metal songs.

Please give that verse riff in “En Force” a real listen and try to pick out which song it’s borrowing from as it always eludes me. Is it a Thin Lizzy song?

Star Of Rio
The Night Flight Orchestra
From the “Amber Galactic” album.

Yep, this song is on my playlist for 2018 and it was in there for 2017. It’s a classic in my book.

Downtown
In And Out Of Trouble

H.E.A.T
From the “Live In London” album.

This band delivers a sound and style i like, and they are a tight band on this live album. Provided that the live album didnt fix things up back in the studio.

Masque Of The Red Death
Crimson Glory
From the “Transcendence” album

This is a blast from the past. I have this on CD, but i haven’t listened to Crimson Glory on Spotify at all.

One Night In The City – Live at Pinkpop Festival
Dio
From the album “The Last In Line” Deluxe Edition

Hearing Dio live, you get a sense of what a super tight band he had, especially Vinny Appice.

Man, the guy doesnt miss a beat at all.

King Of Errors
Evergrey
From the “Hymns For The Broken” album.

This song crushes.

The verse riff is simple and effective and the Queensryche “Operation Mindcrime” sounding Chorus riff is perfect.

What about that lead break?

Killer
Crazy Lixx
From the album “Ruff Justice”

This one is also saved on my playlists as it reminds me of Yngwie Malmsteen.

Marathon – Live In Birmingham England/1988
Rush
From the “A Show Of Hands” album.

Hearing Rush in a live setting, you get a feel for how good they really are and how tight they are as a live band. Especially for a three piece.

A perfect example of paying your dues and honing your chops for years before you make it.

Eyes You Dare Not Meet In Dreams
Redemption
From the album “Long Night’s Journey Into Day”.

Yep, this one is also in my list.

Havana
Red Dragon Cartel
From the album “Patina”.

Jake E Lee lays down a mean blues boogie shuffle in typical Jake fashion, but the vocal line melodies do not connect at all with me.

Bodom Beach Terror
Triple Corpse Hammerblow

Children Of Bodom
From the album “Hate Crew Deathroll”

Musically this band is brilliant and Alexi Laiho (i am spelling from memory here, so maybe there is a mistake) is one unbelievable guitarist. When you hear his style, it’s so heavily influenced by Randy Rhoads, which is perfect to my ears. Vocally it’s not my thing, but musically i really enjoy it.

Check out the solo in “Triple Corpse Hammerblow” and it’s “Over The Mountain” influence.

I even wanted to cover their songs in bands i was in and have the vocal melodies sung instead of growled.

Lock And Key
Rush
From the album “Hold Your Fire”.

Man i havent heard this song for a long time. I feel a Rush binge coming up for the Xmas holidays.

Tightrope
Vandenberg’s MoonKings
From the MK-II album.

Adrian Vandenberg sure knows how to write a good four minute song. This came across my playlists as well, but with so many releases coming through, it sort of got dropped off.

Reign Of Fire
Armored Saint
From the “Symbol Of Salvation” album.

This song is also on my lists. That opening riff is enough to break your desk and start swinging air punches.

Nobody’s Hero
Rush
From the album “Counterparts”

Again, it’s been a long time since we’ve shared a listening experience, so welcome back “Counterparts”.

Life In Still Water
Fates Warning
From the album “Parallels”.

It’s also been a long time since i’ve listened to the “Parallels” album, so it was cool to see this song on a playlist.

Thanks for the playlist Henrik and others should also check it out.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Copyright, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

2018 -II – Feels Like I’ve Been Here Before

Here is the Spotify playlist.

The Day When Legions Burn
Trust
Desolation
Tremonti

Mark Tremonti is a riff master. He just keeps churning out song after song after song. He also knows the modern game is to release frequently and to get people to listen.

“The Day When Legions Burn” is up there as a classic speed metal song and those leads are guitar hero material.

“Trust” has got this groovy and cool intro/verse with a Chorus that would not be out of place in Creed and Alter Bridge. But that slowed down bridge section which reminds me of “Blackbird” is a fuck yeah moment.

And in “Desolation” that section from 2.15 minutes to the end is perfect.

Deja-Vu
Monument

From England and man you can hear their Maiden influences on the “Hellhound” album.

This song is actually a cover of one of my favorite and obscure Maiden songs from their “Somewhere In Time” album.

Monument also have a song called “Death Valley” on the album which has a vocal line similar to “Deja-Vu”.

Feels like I’ve been there before indeed.

Dance Macabre
Ghost

How good is this band?

They just nail it with riffs that remind me of songs from my youth and Tobias Forge is one hell of a lyricist and vocalist. Even if you don’t like his Evil Pope/Cardinal look, there is no denying he’s an excellent artist.

Lover
Artsidir

From Iceland and I have no idea how this pop rock band ended up on my playlist, but the song is catchy and it sounds familiar and it’s a cool listen.

Living In A Hurricane
King Company

From Finland. Another super group project of extreme metal musicians playing songs from their influences and I fucking dig it.

The intro riff is straight from the “Sunset Strip”.

The whole “Sometimes The World Ain’t Enough Album”
The Night Flight Orchestra

Read my review here.

Awaken The Tyrants
Motorjesus

From Germany.

This is the beauty of Spotify. Every artist from any part of the world is available to be found.

I love the sound of this song. It’s classic heavy metal the way I now it.

The whole “For The Love Of Metal” album.
Dee Snider

Read my reviews here and here.

The whole “Long Nights Journey Into Day”
Redemption

Read my review here.

Killing Ourselves To Live
Buzz
Black Vultures
Halestorm

Lzzy Hale gets it. She communicates with her fans via Twitter and she writes lyrics which reflect life. And her topic range is huge from tongue and cheek songs about threesomes and vibrators, to more serious subject matter about internet trolls and taking risks to stand for something.

“Killing Ourselves To Live” to me, is about not being afraid about the pain that the fight for a better life and society will bring ya.

“Buzz” based on the lyrics looks like it’s about a vibrator.

“Black Vultures” to me is about the social media haters (the black vultures) circling and waiting for Lzzy to fail.

Easter – Live at the Royal Albert Hall
Marillion

The lead break here is what hooks me. It hooked me from the first time I heard it and it still hooks me now.

Why Won’t You (Die Motherfucker)
Mile

Any song that starts off with the words “why won’t you die motherfucker it’s time for you to leave” has my attention.

It’s aggressive and energetic and I dig it.

It came across my radar when Spotify added it to one of their playlists which I follow.

And of course they are from Sweden.

Paralyzed
Feel The Way I Feel
Nonpoint

It sounds nothing like the Nonpoint I first heard, but goddamn it, I like it. It’s a risk and they are flying high with it.

Running Out Of Time
Home
Heartline
Ladders For Leaders
Dead Letter Circus

Great Aussie rock band.

“Heartline” and “Ladders For Leaders” are the standout tracks for me.

Check out these lyrics;

Villains created,
Become ladders for leaders
To keep us from asking
Who’s holding the strings
Coming from their backs

Governments defined. Create an enemy and use said enemy to ascend the political wilderness and rise to the top. And behind you, the corporations and their lobbyists are filling you with cash so you bow down to them.

Another Day
Ultraphonix

This album was an interesting experiment from George Lynch and Corey Glover and this song is by far the best.

Body Of Work
Degreed

Degreed are hit and miss with me. On this song, they nail the heavy rock in the verses with a super catchy melodic rock chorus.

And of course they are from Sweden.

Some Thing About Love
Saliva

It’s not Josey Scott on vocals but they still rock. This song could have been on a Good Charlotte album it’s that catchy.

Take Away My Soul
Uriah Heep

They are still rocking it, being led by Mick Box who is the only original member left.

I am not a person willing to buy into this (I’m a free man)
I stand by my own decision I made long ago (I’m a free man)
I am stronger and I go my own way

We believe we are free, but we are tied to a lot of institutions, it’s not even funny.

Plus there is an outro guitar solo that seems to go on forever and I like it..

The whole Persistence album
Kingcrow

From Italy.

Read my review here.

Walk Me Through The Fire
Nordic Union

The Road To Hell
Sunstorm

Nordic Union is a Danish/Swedish Frontiers project featuring Pretty Maids vocalist Ronnie Atkins and guitarist/songwriter/producer Erik Martensson from Eclipse and W.E.T.

Joe Lynn Turner fronts Sunstorm and melodic rock songwriter Alessandro Delvecchio provides keys and songwriting. “Road To Hell” is a song that has a few musical passages reminiscent of “Judas” from Malmsteen.

And I’ve had this feeling for a while that the projects Delvecchio and Martensson are involved in are starting to sound very similar. And Frontiers really needs a rethink here.

Remember this is why hard rock went into cardiac arrest while everyone blamed Grunge. Too much samey equals career suicide.

Stay tuned for 3.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, Unsung Heroes

2018 – Legends Will Rise – Part 1

It’s time to start the year in review.

Here is the playlist for all the songs.

I have over 150 songs saved, and I’ve broken my comments on each song over a few posts.

When Legends Rise
Godsmack

It’s the title track. Generic nu-Metal in the music, but those vocal melodies from Sully Erna are addictive.

Legs are tired
These hands are broken
Alone I tried
With words unspoken
A silent cry
My breath is frozen
With blinded eyes
I fear myself

It’s the mindset that makes it happen. If the mind believes it’s possible, you will find a way to make it possible, even when your body screams stop.

It’s burning down
It’s burning high
When ashes fall
Legends rise

When your backs against the wall, when you have that last play, that last punch, that last kick, that last run left to do, the ones who succeed are the ones who have failed before.

I played it to my kids and they immediately connected with the lyrics.

Eye Of The Storm
Godsmack

In the eye of the storm I make my stand
But I’m not waiting for the walls to close in
I just brace myself for the winds to change their ways

Great analogy about the chaos of life we face everyday.

Forever And A Day
Gathering of Kings

The song is written by Victor Olsson. Actually all of the songs are written by Victor on this album and there is hardly a mention of him in the news, sort of like how Alessandro Delvecchio is the silent partner in Frontiers project.

This project is like a Steely Dan project in Swedish Melodic Rock circles with musicians from The Night Flight Orchestra, Spiritual Beggars, Treat, Eclipse, Corroded, Saffire and Pretty Maids all involved.

What can I say I’m a sucker for tunes like this.

Through
Remember Me
Gioeli Castronovo

Another Frontiers Records project of getting certain people together to deliver a melodic rock album written by Alessandro Delvecchio.

And how cool does the “Heavens On Fire” vocal melody sound over different chords on “Through”.

Sorry
Stryper

One thing about Stryper is they are still in the game, releasing albums and each one has a classic song or two on them with some killer guitar playing.

Like the lead break on this song.

Check it out.

Monolith
Thirty Seconds To Mars

It’s only a minute and thirty seven seconds instrumental, but it’s enough. It couldnt be any longer as it sets a feel and emotion of something big to come.

Great Wide Open
Thirty Seconds To Mars

Into the great wide open
Across a land of blood and dreams

I remember when Dad and my older brother got our first family car, which was a shitty Mitsubishi L300 Van. It just felt like all the borders and city limits evaporated and suddenly we were traveling into the great wide open.

Live Like A Dream
Thirty Seconds To Mars

Live like a dream
Broken but free

Life is tough. It tries to break us, make us obey and it tries to make us fit a mold made by someone else.

Burn
W.E.T

Get ready to be sent back to the mid 80s in another Frontiers Melodic Rock Project.

Calm Before The Storm
Light The Torch

Howard Jones delivers a stellar vocal performance that deals with addiction.

The nights are getting colder
The days are growing long
And you do not know what you’re fighting for
Come back to where you started
Come back where you belong
And I won’t be your calm before the storm

How good is the Chorus vocal melody?

This Is War
Audrevolution
Blackout

Audrey Horne

From Norway.

I’m fuel to the fire
Flame rising higher
This is war
We we’ll never be silent
Or divided
This is war

When I turn to the news pages on the web, there is so much abuse of power.

Bankers are abusing their position, getting rich by selling debt. Politicians are abusing their positions to cater for corporations instead of the people who voted them in. People in power abusing their positions for sexual gratitude and if the victim doesn’t comply, they railroad their career.

So what can the rest of us do?

Do we just stand divided, so focused on our ones and zeroes in our bank accounts or do we get together and make change.

It’s up to us.

Welcome to the Audrevolution
666 our own constitution

I sing the 6-6-6 with drink-drink-drink.

A Love Unreal
Black Label Society

My review of this song is here and that guitar solo.

Luminary
Juno

Tesseract

Progressive rock has come a long way from its 70s explosion. To me a song can be in 4/4 and still be progressive. TesseracT sit someone in between with their off beat polyrhythms, atmospheric guitars or jarring guitars with melodic vocals.

Are you alone, locked inside
That prison in your head?
You walk through the crowd
Lost in the sound
Invisible to every passing eye

It’s a symptom of the times. We are connected socially by digital means but when in public, we put our headphones on, keep to ourselves and get lost in the crowd, with our thoughts to keep us company.

Walls Come Down
Pink Cream 69

A German act.

You never tried to soften your words
Twisted your terms, took us for fools
And all you know is what you’ve been told

Upbringing, family and the social class you keep as you grow are all pivotal in how you understand the world.

If there is a racist in your circle, you will have racist views. If their is a climate change denier in the group, you will have denial views as well.

And when you come across people with views that differ, how do you respond. Do you yell back with your own views?

The Peace
WASP

Blackie can sure write a kick arse ballad. You can read my review here.

Behind A Mask
Machine Head

Another song which I have covered in a separate blog post.

Right Left Wrong
Strange Days

Three Days Grace

So here I go
Left right left
Right left wrong
I don’t know where I’m going
But I just keep moving on
Moving on

So true. Wandering aimlessly without a thought. You know you need to get away but to where.

Raise a glass to the end of it all
Who’s to blame when it’s everyone’s fault?
And we celebrate our way through dangerous times
Strange days are comin’ for us
Say goodbye to the way that it was
And we celebrate our way through dangerous times

The times in a nutshell. We are comfortable and oblivious to all the shit we allow people in positions of power get away with. To raise our voice, to demonstrate, means to be uncomfortable and the majority just want comfort.

No Surrender
Judas Priest

The riff hooks me and then the chorus lyrics seal the deal.

Chasing a dream as I go higher
Playing it mean, my heart’s on fire
Living my life, ain’t no pretender
Ready to fight with no surrender

Yeah it all rhymes and it’s simple and it’s dumb and i fucking dig it.

Next Few Steps
Surrender The Crown

From Germany.

I know for a fact that duty always bounds to love

Duty means a responsibility or a task of action that one is required to perform as part of ones job.

So when Love gets in the way, get ready for duty.

Transition
CrashCarBurn

From South Africa and they’ve been rocking since 2006. They came into my listening headspace back in 2014 because of piracy.

And since then I’ve been a fan on Spotify. This is from the new album “Headlights” and no one even knows about it.

Love Can Only Heal
Myles Kennedy

The feel of this song and the outro is what hooks me.

Nevermind the pain
‘Cause love can only heal
If only you could trade the dark for light it might reveal
That there’s a place inside
Don’t be afraid to feel
‘Cause love can only heal

Sometimes love is not enough especially when you don’t have it around you.

Blues Won’t Leave Me Alone
RSO

Orianthi kills it on this track. Her vocal line delivery is outstanding and her leads on the track is what legends are made off.

On Spotify it’s totally forgotten at 35K streams and on YouTube it’s sitting at 217K views. Still anemic for the quality in this song.

Creatures
Monsters

Shinedown

As they chase the charts with songs that don’t sound like Shinedown, let’s hope they don’t forget why they made the charts in the first place, by playing kick ass rock.

These two songs are how I like Shinedown to sound.

The Void
Chronos
Prey

Parkway Drive

From Australia.

This is the album that connected with me and it’s album number 6 from them.

Musically the riffs are there, bone crushing when they need to be and melodic when they need to be.

No Masters
Bad Wolves

This is a great song with lyrics that connect.

Back on that chain gang, strumming along
Hammering nails so I can sing my song
The devil done this to me
I drive the spikes down, profound
Building the cages that all broke us down
Boy get back down on your knees

As Sebastian Bach from Skid Row belted out, “how can I be king of the world if I’m a slave to the grind”.

So why are we spending our time building someone else’s dream instead of ours?

So take these chains from me
We’ll break these bastards
There’s no masters here

Sounds great on paper but reality is so much different. As much as we said we’re not gonna take it, we did take it and became slaves in the process.

A thousand boots down on the ground
Beating a drum under a marching sound
You better fucking believe
They’re screaming left right, left right
Fist in the air you better pick a side
Against the plutocracy

Plutocracy means government by the wealthy. And god damn it, it’s true. If the politicians are not wealthy, their faceless sponsors are.

Because even though politicians are voted in by the people, they refuse to serve the people, while the bend over for the corporation and their lobbyists.

Stay tuned for the other parts to come..

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