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

November 2020 – Part 1

A lot of music has been released in November so far. So here we go with my review of it.

Black Stone Cherry

I have a bias towards BSC, so it’s not surprise they lead off my November posts of new releases.

“The Human Condition” is the album. They are like my modern day heavy rock ZZ Top.

“The Chain” grooves its way through until the solo section riff kicks in and the speed picks up. “Ringin’ In My Head” and “Again” flow into each other, catchy and groovy tracks that remain ringing in my head after they’ve finished.

“When Angels Learn To Fly” is a bit removed from their blues rock and more in Shinedown like territory. And one of my favourite tracks on the album.

As soon as the intro lead break starts for “In Love With The Pain” I was all in.

“Ride” sounds like it came from the Sunset Strip. “Don’t Bring Me Down” is a cover from ELO and it works perfectly.

System Of A Down

“Protect The Land” and “Genocidal Humanoidz” is SOAD’s response to Azerbaijan and Turkey’s bombing of an Armenian settlement inside Azerbaijan called Nagorno-Karabakh which the Armenians call Artsakh.

All of the SOAD members are from Armenian ancestries and this conflict has gotten the band to write and record new music.

At it its highest level, it’s a conflict based on religious divides first. Armenia is Christian and Azerbaijan is Islam.

From 1988 to 1994, the original war broke out, with the area being liberated into Armenian hands. But in Europe, these kind of small liberations are rarely forgotten by the losing side. Clashes have occurred throughout the years, from 2008 onwards and in 2020, it escalated again.

“Protect The Land” is a tribute to the soldiers and people of Artsakh who are risking their lives to protect their homes.

Orianthi

“O” is the new album.

It’s on Frontiers.

I read ten reviews of the album and all of them hated it. One review even went to town on how the marketing team are promoting Orianthi, and they used an image from one of the music videos of her slithering on a bed in undies and all that.

For me, it’s great to see Orianthi back out on her own.

And from the outset, “Contagious” gets me rocking, a cross between blues rock and a bit of Muse chucked in. “Sinners Hymn” is a nice amalgamation of the devils blues music with modern rock to create a sinners anthem. “Sorry” is a contemporary pop song.

“Crawling Out Of The Dark” is on acoustic, it’s quite, subdued and melancholic.

“Streams Of Consciousness” is a co-write with Nikki Sixx and Marti Frederiksen. Country rock at its best. And then there is a track like “Company” which has blues guitar but the background foundation is very synth driven. And a chorus that would not be out of place on an album from “The Cure”. “Moonwalker” has got this Latin vibe.

In other words there is a lot of variation here and a little bit for everyone.

Fates Warning

On Metal Blade Records.

One of the first progressive metal bands I got into. For a prog band to succeed there has to be a song. If there isn’t a song, then all of the flash and technical interludes over complex time changes means nothing. Jim Matheos can craft a song and he doesn’t need to create complex interludes with millions of notes. Sometimes an atmospheric mood or groove is enough.

“Long Day Good Night” is their newest album and they’ve been on form since their comeback 5 years ago after a long hiatus.

“The Destination Onward” percolates for the first few minutes as it builds into a rocker. “Shuttered World” and “Alone We Walk” establish grooves and move on with em. This is as straight forward as Fates Warning get. “The Way Home” builds for 4 minutes before the band smashes in and rocks their way for another three or so minutes.

“Glass Houses” brings the prog metal that Fates Warning is known for.

The piece d’resistance is “Longest Shadow of the Day”. At the start it combines a King Crimson like progression with flamenco style guitars and a bass solo. And as the song percolates and builds, its fusion of styles clash into the Fates Warning style, I like. And this happens around the 3 minute mark.

At 5 and a half minutes, it all quietens down with some mournful arpeggios and it’s time for Ray Alder’s voice to shine.

Then at 8.42, Joey Vera takes over with a bass riff that makes me want to take up bass. Drummer, Bobby Jarzombek also shines, with Matheos and new guitarist, Michael Adbow decorating.

And did I mention it has a great guitar solo as well?

It does.

And for those Armored Saint fans, bassist Joey Vera has been doing work with Fates Warning since 2000 and he’s still rocking and progging away with em.

Jeff Scott Soto

Otherwise known as JSS from here on in. One of my favourite rock voices when it comes to melodic rock, and I am also digging the work he’s doing with Sons Of Apollo.

The album “Wide Awake (In My Dreamland)” kicks off in melodic rock style with “Someone To Love”. From the opening intro lead, I am hooked. “Mystified” is more L.A Sunset Strip than Euro Melodic Metal with a shred-a-licious solo.

“Love’s Blind” rocks in the intro and verses. The Chorus is a bit clichéd but hey JSS has a lot of goodwill in my book, so it doesn’t really detract.

“Without You” is one of those Euro like ballads that borders on classical music. Listening to it, I’m hearing, Zep, Bruce Dickinson, ELO and Swedish acts like Roxette and ABBA.

“Paper Wings” has guitar work that reminds me of the work that JSS did with Malmsteen and is an instant favourite for me. I know that Malmsteen has dissed JSS in the press, but Malmsteen is known as a revisionist and whatever he says doesn’t diminish the work that JSS did with him, especially on the excellent “Marching Out”.

Album closer “Desperate” also captures that 80’s metal vibe that I like.

Part 2 is coming up.

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

October 2020 – Part 5

Here is the final post from the October releases.

Atreyu

“Save Us” has a monster riff. It’s simple but heavy.

Whose side will you align with?
Will you just stay silent?
Riot, riot
We won’t stand in a line compliant
Time for your fire
It’s time for the riot

And the lyrics are angry.

While the internet has connected us, we stand divided in our political views. A lot of people will let discrimination slide as long as their bank account balance keeps ticking up and leaders play on that. This is what the band said recently;

“This song feels like the anthem that we all need right now. To us, it’s a call to action to light the fire in ourselves. We can begin to make great change – but only if we look inside first.”

Saul

From Iowa, U.S.

Formed in 2007, they released a few EP’s and “Rise As Equals” is their label debut on Spinefarm (a Finnish label which specialises in heavy metal and hard rock). They are made up of vocalist Blake Bedsaul, guitarist/backing vocalist Zach Bedsaul, bassist/backing vocalist William McIlravy, and drummer Myles Clayborne.

Saul is one of those bands that merge all these different kind of metals into one metal. Old school metal + Nu metal + progressive metal + grunge + hard rock = Saul. They are doing Disturbed better than Disturbed is right now. Hell, they even got David Draiman to write with them over Zoom on “King Of Misery”.

My favourites today are “Looking To Fight”, “King Of Misery”, “Get It Right” and “The Toll”. Plus there is an excellent cover of Pink Floyd’s “Welcome To The Machine”.

And the album is good. Other songs like “Levee”, “Rise As Equals”, “Brother” and “Trial By Fire” take over depending on my mood.

Joe Bonamassa

He’s been releasing a lot of new music these last few years. “Royal Tea” is the latest.

“When One Door Opens” starts, the intro riff grabs me and in the solo section it moves to bolero hard rock. Aggressive bolero hard rock, that is.

“Why Does It Take So Long To Say Goodbye” is a favourite, a song I’ve already written about. “Lookout Man!” has a swampy heavy blues riff. “A Conversation With Alice” sound like a Bad Company cut and I like it. “Beyond The Silence” has this Cowboy Western colonial vibe.

Pearl Jam

The “Live MTV Unplugged” album.

“Black” and “Jeremy” are my favourite tracks ever from Pearl Jam and my go to tracks on the “Unplugged” album.

Thin Lizzy

Phil Lynott has been dead for 34 years, but the music he created with Thin Lizzy has been kept alive.

Apart from the songs appearing on radio and TV shows or movies, John Sykes kept the name alive for a good decade, touring as Thin Lizzy, then Thin Lizzy reformed with Ricky Warwick on vocals and they changed their name to Black Star Riders.

And artists have kept on covering Lizzy tracks. Metallica did “Whiskey In The Jar”, Megadeth did “Cold Sweat”, Europe and John Norum have covered a lot of Lizzy songs.

And they have released a massive collection called “Rock Legends”. The “Decca Era and Mauger Tape Rarities” is also included in the “Rock Legends” set.

Sink your ears into em and spend some time with Lizzy. She will love ya for it.

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

October 2020 – Part 4

Architects

“Animals” is the song.

We’re nothing but a bunch of animals

I was listening to an album from a German act called Long Distance Calling. They are predominantly an instrumental act with vocals and voiceovers appearing in some songs.

Their latest album has a voiceover on the song “Ashes” about how other beings from another world see humans;

I would like to share a revelation that I’ve had during my time here. It came to me when I tried to classify your species and I have realised that you are not actually mammals.

Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment but you humans do not. You move to an area and you multiply and multiply, until every natural resource is consumed and the only way you can survive is to spread to another area.

There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern; a virus.

Maybe we should paraphrase the lyric to be, “we’re nothing but a bunch of viruses”.

Soilwork

Readers of this blog know that I am a fan of The Night Flight Orchestra and as a by-product Soilwork, which is vocalist Bjorn Strid main band. While TNFO is melodic AOR, Soilwork is melodic death metal.

“The Nothingness And The Devil” is the single and the main riff gets me interested to learn it.

Lyrically, guitarist David Andersson said, “that our views of gods are old and that we need to create our own new gods if we need them, because no God will correct the mess that we have put ourselves in”.

Sevendust

The album is called “Blood And Stone” and for a band which has survived bankruptcy, addictions and relationship breakdowns, “Blood And Stone” is a fitting title for album number 13.

The heavy stuff is the heavy stuff, sometimes interchangeable with each other and then there are tracks like “Feel Like Going On” which always hook me in. It’s one of those mid-tempo tracks that Sevendust does so well.

And its followed by “What You’ve Become” which is intense.

Other favourite tracks are “Criminal” and “Against The World”.

Armored Saint

I’ve always kept coming back to Armored Saint.

Their new album is called “Punching The Sky” and for a band that has had survived record label accounting, the death of lead guitarist Dave Prichard and losing one of the most formidable front men to Anthrax in the 90’s, the title of this album is perfect.

Because when John Bush returned to the band, they have gone from strength to strength in my world.

Opening track “Standing On The Shoulders Of Giants” had me interested. “End Of The Attention Span” blows glass out of the speakers before a speed metal riff takes over for the verses.

And how good is John Bush on vocals.

The sounds of metal hitting metal kick off the groove laden “Bubble” and the metal on metal sounds return in the headbanging interlude section. “Do Wrong To None” is a groove thrash song and that syncopated open string riff in the verses is headbanging material.

“Missile To Gun” is one of those tracks that reminds me of Judas Priest. Its fast, like “Defenders” and “Screaming” era. Guitarists Phil Sandoval and Jeff Duncan are having fun with all of this, riffing their way and decorating each song nicely.

“Fly In The Ointment” has a catchy chorus, reminding me of Savatage and a nice harmony solo. “Unfair” is a ballad like song, but a proper metal ballad, not a sappy love song. And the album closes with “Never You Fret”, a high energy thrasher. Joey Vera’s bass thunders and locks in with drummer Gonzo Sandoval.

Bruce Springsteen

“Letter To You” is the album and the title track was an instant save when it was released in the lead up to the album. “Last Man Standing” is an overused title, but with Springsteen, its fresh and new. “The Power Of Prayer” has a piano arpeggio riff to kick it off, before the major key acoustic strumming riff kicks in.

“The criminal clown has stolen the throne” is a lyric in the song, “House Of A Thousand Guitars”.

It’s my favourite song on the album.

The reference to the criminal clown is based on a certain leader of a democratic nation that just lost an election. If you need any proof of what Springsteen thinks of Trump, then google, “Springsteen views Trump” and watch for yourself.

House of a thousand guitars, house of a thousand guitars
Brother and sister, wherever you are
We’ll rise together till we fire the spark
That’ll light up the house of a thousand guitars

And the song is about the people, and how they need to be as loud as a house with a thousand guitars.

But democracy is not like that.

In the name of freedom and the right to vote, we are free to express our views. In other words, we are united in democracy while divided when it comes to politics.

Part 5 for October is coming up.

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

October 2020 – Part 3

Silvera

The song “Edge Of The World” (which is also the title track) reminds me of the “Bounce” album from Jovi, which was Jovi’s modern take on the Creed sound and the lead break is pretty cool.

So I was interested to hear more.

“Generation Z” has that head banging riff that reminds me of the 80’s and there’s another guitar hero lead break. “Light In Life” and “The Reckoning” were one of those pre-release singles that got me to follow the band on Spotify.

“Filling The Void” has this Killswitch Engage melodic metal feel in the music and a vocal line which could come from a Shinedown album.

Album closer, “Promise” makes me press repeat, just to hear it again.

The Smashing Pumpkins

I still check out The Pumpkins because of “Siamese Dream” and “Mellon Collie”. And this time around, I actually liked the electronica in the music. It’s almost like “The Cure”. And I can hear “The Cure” influences on songs like “Cyr” and “The Colour Of Love”.

Sanctuary

While Sanctuary never got the sales on the board like other metal/thrash acts, they did become a cult favourite and when half of the band went on to form Nevermore (vocalist Warrel Dane and bassist Jim Sheppard), the spirt of Sanctuary lived on. But then Nevermore finished up and Sanctuary was reformed, releasing the excellent “The Year The Sun Died” in 2014.

Then Jim Sheppard left in 2016 and Warrel Dane passed away in 2017 and we never got to hear what could have come next.

But 30 years after the release of “Into The Mirror Black”, it gets the anniversary treatment and man, it’s so good to hear these songs again.

There are songs that sound like they came from a Queensryche album or a Megadeth album or a Testament album. In other words, it’s just a good metal album.

The Norseman Company

I don’t mind it when bands show their influences and pay homage to em. Sometimes it gets too much “likey likey” and sometimes its subtle.

For too much “likey likey”, check out “Here Comes Rock And Roll”.

As soon as you press play, “I Love Rock And Roll” from Joan Jett comes to mind, then in the verses, its “Pour Some Sugar On Me” and “Let’s Get Rocked” from Def Leppard. Now, I know that those songs also had their influences and Joan Jett’s is a cover, so the cycle goes round and round.

Then when you press play on “Master Of The Dark”, an unknown song called “Rainbow In The Dark” comes to mind.

Very likey likey.

But.

I’m interested, let’s see what comes next.

And all I know about the band, is that it’s a guitarist with guest vocalists.

Teramaze

From Australia.

“I Wonder” is their seventh album and it’s the first time I’m sinking my ears into em. Progressive Rock has a bad concoction these days, associated with a million notes over complex chord changes or in Tool’s case, long laboured grooves that move in and out of complex time signatures or polyrhythms. But there are a lot of bands that can take it all and make it sound easy, not complex and not too long.

Teramaze is one such band.

The first two tracks, “Ocean Floor” and “Only Daylight” are heavy rock songs, with emotive and melodic vocals, with distorted guitars chugging along, they keep jarring me out of the melancholy.

The “Sleeping Man” has a chorus hook of “I’ve awoken the sleeping man inside”. It’s catchy, its hard rock and its perfect.

And the riffs.

“I Wonder” is also a favourite.

Tomorrow or next week, it will be others.

DGM

From Italy and on the Frontiers Label.

Metal music with a bit of prog always gets me interested. Stand out songs for me are “Surrender”, “Stranded” and “Tragic Separation”

“Surrender” is the standard AOR heavy song on a progressive album. Dream Theater always have tracks like these.

Tracks like “Stranded” and “Tragic Separation” remind me of “Images And Words” and “Falling Into Infinity” Dream Theater.

And underpinning these three tracks are riffs that remind me of EVH.

Signal Red

“Alien Nation” is the album. There are two types of songs on this album. Melodic Rock songs and songs with a bit of prog Metal and a lot of melodic rock chucked in.

So it’s no surprise my bias gravitates to the songs that sound like metal with a lot of melodic rock chucked in.

“Invisible Scars” is a progressive track and it got me interested, so I went googling. This is their second album.

The first one “Under the Radar” coming out in 2018. They are from the UK.

“Rocket Fuel” starts off with a progressive syncopated style riff and it has a solo section with a rhythm section that reminds me of “Kashmir” while the guitar wails away. “Awakenings” reminds me of Deep Purple and Rainbow.

“Tide Of Life” has a kicking intro which I like. “Pure Shores” has a piano riff to kick it off which is catchy. “Alien Nation” has a guitar hero lead break. “Standing On Top Of The World” has duelling lead guitars to start it off and it’s major key sounds brings a sense of hope.

Stardust

Another melodic metal/rock act.

Just think of Steve Perry singing in an act that is more aggressive in their riffs.

As soon as I heard “Runaway”, I knew I had to google to find out more.

The album is called “Highway To Heartbreak” and it’s on Frontiers. The band is from Hungary and somehow the guys in the band have turned their Hungarian names into Adam Stewart, Ben Martin, Dave Legrand, Facey and Tim Keeley. Nice English names for Hungarian boys.

They’ve mentioned how they like three specific bands in Def Leppard, Winger and Journey, along with all the 80’s stuff. It’s a broad canvas.

There is a high energised cover of “Heartbreaker” from Pat Benater.

“Bullet To My Heart” reminds me of Babylon AD.

“Perfect Obsession” is “I Remember You” or “Every Rose Has Its Thorn” or “I Saw Red”.

“2nd Hand Love” feels like a Bad English song in the intro, with John Waite singing. But when the pre chorus kicks in, it feels like a Mutt Lange/Def Leppard Pre Chorus and when the Chorus kicks in, it has a bluesy vibe, like the work that Bryan Adams did with Mutt Lange in the 90’s.

“Shout It Out” kicks off like “Have A Nice Day” before it morphs into a EVH style riff for a few seconds and then the bass and keys take over the verse. The vocals are catchy and that chorus is also so catchy, it remains for a long time after the song is over. Plus did I mention that the song has a killer guitar hero solo.

“Can’t Stop Loving You” is basically Def Leppard “Stand Up (Kick Love Into Motion). And I like it.

“Eye To Eye” is back to the hard rock with a bluesy chorus, like Black Stone Cherry, but the song is a lot more. It has keys which enhance it and riffs on some sections that remind me of Whitesnake. Did I mention that the guitar solo is a highlight moment as well?

“Hey Mother” could have been written by Tommy Shaw. Once you hear the Chorus melody, you would know what I mean.

And did I mention that the song has an excellent guitar solo?

“Blue Jeans Eyes” has another guitar hero solo spotlight and “The River Is Rollin’” closes the album with a massive Don Henley vibe.

Part 4 is coming up.

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

October 2020 – Part 2

Reach

They dropped another song called “Young Again” and it has this feel good vibe with a chord progression influenced by “Stand By Me”. I know, the C to Am to F to G riff has been around for ages and used in other songs, but I always associate it with “Stand By Me”.

One Less Reason

I’m a fan of the band because of piracy and they got me off side when they took over 1 year to deliver the CD’s I purchased from their website. It took countless follow ups and I still didn’t get what I ordered. But their music is that good that I keep checking em out.

“Treason” is a new one. I’m interested.

Corey Taylor

It’s a diverse album, as “Hwy 666” is basically a country hillbilly rock song which wouldn’t be out of place on the “Ghostrider” movie and then it goes into “Black Eyes Blue” which has this 70’s hard rock vibe. “Silverfish” sounds like a Stone Temple Pilots song. “Kansas” sounds like a Hootie And The Blowfish song.

“Culture Head” is typical of his Stone Sour output and so is “Everybody Dies On My Birthday”.

Linkin Park

They released a 20 year anniversary edition of “Hybrid Theory” with a lot of tracks.

Back in 2000, this album was given to me by a singer from a band I was in and Chester’s voice is a very big reason why I became a fan. His sense of melody and aggression is/was perfect. And on repeated listens, the riffs started to become memorable and I was hooked. Suddenly my song writing started to have a nu-metal like feel.

Listen to the riffs on tracks like “Papercut” and “One Step Closer”. Guitarist Brad Delson is a virtual unknown in guitar circles but he shouldn’t be. His riffs dominate the streaming services and the old school radio airwaves more than all of the guitar heroes I grew up with.

12 x platinum in the U.S and 4x Platinum in Australia, along with certifications in nearly every other country. No one expected the album to be that big.

From the unreleased stuff, it’s the mellow stuff like “My December”, “She Couldn’t” and “Pictureboard” that got me interested.

Ozzy Osbourne

“Blizzard Of Ozz” got its 40 Year Anniversary release this year.

This album is huge in my life so this ain’t going to be a review as I’ve more or less reviewed it on different occasions in the past.

For something new and for people who maybe haven’t heard em, it’s always cool to hear “You Said It All” (which I placed after “Goodbye To Romance” in the album list) and “You Looking At Me, Looking At You” (which I placed after “Crazy Train”).

And it’s a reminder of how unbelievably talented Randy Rhoads is and how sad it is that the music we have from RR is just down to a few albums with Ozzy and Quiet Riot.

Lee Kerslake on the drums is like a battering ram and unsung hero Bob Daisley holds down the foundations.

The Swedish Funk Connection

This band was formed in the 80’s but didn’t really release anything on a label until recently. In 2018, they released an album called “1987” that had this AOR sound. And in 2020, they are gearing up for another release.

“Centre Of My Universe” is the song, more like Toto and Survivor in there soft rock period.

Angeline

From Sweden.

“Helpless” is the single and its melodic hard rock. They have been on my radar since they released their “Life E.P, Vol 1” but I lost em for quite a few years.

Wolves At The Gate

I didn’t know it when I heard the songs, but the “Dawn” EP, is a stripped down counterpart to their 2019 metalcore album “Eclipse”.

The term “reimagined” was used in the promotion. I remember when Lynch Mob reimagined “Wicked Sensation” and I hated it. Maybe there are fans of Wolves At The Gate that hate this EP, but I like it and this EP is getting me interested in the band.

Check out tracks like “The Cure”, “Face To Face” and “Drifter”.

And the standout track is “Alone”, recorded live during quarantine.

Ihsahn

Ihsahn has come a long way from his black metal days with “Emperor”. “Pharos” is the name of this five song EP. It has electronica, moody landscapes and atmospheric and distorted guitars.

For example, when the distorted guitars kick in on “Losing Altitude” it enhances the mood and its jarring, almost like you’re hitting the dirt at high speed. Or in “Pharos”, the distorted guitars hit you in the face with its tribal ancient stampede. Think of those epic 60’s movies and the music during battles.

And my favourite track is “Roads”. Just listen to it and let the moods take you on whatever road you want to go on.

Machine Head

“Circle The Drain” is released as an acoustic track.

This all comes down to Robb Flynn doing his acoustic drinking podcast series each Friday. Each week he covered songs and always did a few Machine Head songs as well. The fans liked em, so the fans encouraged him to release some officially and here we are.

Part 3 coming up.

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

October – Part 1

It’s gonna be a busy month catching up on posts and reading other posts. Normally at the end of each month (for this year only), I’ve been posting my “best off” for the month.

These October posts are a bit late, but it’s been fun getting into em and allowing music to lift my mood.

The Night Flight Orchestra

A two song release from one of my favourite bands at the moment. There new take on old sounds has been dominating my headspace since the debut album came out, 8 years ago.

“Impossible” and “Reach Out” are the songs at the moment.

As soon as the rock funk disco feel of “Impossible” kicks in, I’m hooked.

Put it on, lay back and let the sounds wash over you.

For “Reach Out”, it just sounds like a song from the early 80’s and the mind goes away to that time, in my bedroom, taping the songs from radio stations.

Smith And Myers

Brent Smith is one of the best rock singers going around. Shinedown is the main muse for Smith And Myers and in between, they get together and rock out acoustically.

It started off as a covers project based on fan requests for YouTube video releases only and it has morphed into a full fledge original song project. In 2020, we get “Volume 1” and “Volume 2”.

“Not Mad Enough” kicks off “Volume 1” and it could have been on a Shinedown album. That Chorus is arena rock quality. “Rockin’ in the Free World” from Neil Young becomes a soulful piano ballad.

“The Weight of It All” is brilliant and “Panic!” has this modern pop vibe which Smith does a stellar job keeping up with and just rocking out with it. “Never Tear Us Apart” is a great INXS song and Smith/Myers do a great job covering it in acoustic format.

“Coast to Coast” rocks as hard as it can in an acoustic setting. “Valerie” is a Mark Ronson and Amy Winehouse cover song but it’s the George Michael “Faith” guitar riff that gets me interested.

“Since You Were Mine” is a soulful piano ballad. It’s in the same category as “Call Me” from Shinedown. And “Volume 1” closes with “Unchained Melody”, a cover from The Righteous Brothers. It was sort of like a forgotten song, until the movie “Ghost” with Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore brought it back into the public conversation. And its remained there ever since.

“Bad at Love” was one of the first songs written for this project and it kicks off “Volume 2”. It’s got this Tracy Chapman “Fast Cars” musical vibe, and a Smith vocal melody which is catchy. “Bad Guy” is a Billie Eilish cover and I like it when artists cover songs from artists that are not in their genre. This one has this flamenco feel and it works.

“New School Shiver” is basic hard rock, with a bluesy like acoustic riff and an addictive vocal melody. Then its “Sledgehammer” time, a Peter Gabriel cover. I was a bit over this song as it was so overplayed in Australia and the film clip which had state of the art tech at the time in it. But a good song is a good song and a good song will always translate well to the acoustic format, which in this case, it does. Suddenly, I feel like it’s a Bad Company song.

“Rebel Yell” feels weird to hear it as a piano ballad but it works. “Like You Never Left” feels like a Tonic song. “Losing My Religion” would make R.E.M proud. “One More Time” is this bluesy soul rock tune which needs to be heard and the “Volume 2” closes with “Don’t Look Back in Anger” from Oasis.

Deftones

I’m a fan of their earlier albums and because of that early fandom, I keep checking out the other releases. And each album has a few tracks that get me to pick up the guitar and lock into the groove they create.

And it’s “Ohms” on this album that has the riff with the groove that gets me interested.

Trishula

I knew nothing about this band except that their album cover appeared on a website called rockreport.be and I thought I would do something I haven’t done in ages.

Check out an album based on the album cover.

And I liked it.

Its melodic hard rock the way I like it.

The album is called “Time Waits For No Man”.

So I went digging.

From the UK, formed by guitarist Neil Fraser who got Jason Morgan as the vocalist. They both appeared in other hard rock bands before this, but none of em come to mind.

This is their second album.

“Fallen Hero” is like Lou Gramm on vocals with a bit of Survivor thrown in and some tasty melodic rock.

“I Want It All” sounds like it came from a Malmsteen album either “Odyssey” or “Eclipse”. The song “Judas” comes to mind. Actually “Iron Eagle” also comes to mind.

“Hear No Evil” has that Kashmir ascending progression, which David Coverdale used on “Judgement Day” and it’s that song which comes to mind. It’s a save and add to a playlist.

“The Border” reminds me of Magnum and 80’s era Bad Company. If you want your DLR Van Halen fix, then check out “Knocked Down”.

“Every Time We Touch” is a ballad, but it rolls along in a rocking way.

And finally, Neil Fraser was an unknown guitar player to me, but his guitar work on this album is excellent. He decorates the songs with precision, never overplaying and supplementing instead.

Atlas

This band also appeared on the rockreport.be website that Trishula appeared. So I thought, why not.

“Parallel Love” is album number 2.

Atlas is also another band from the UK, formed in 2017.

“Without You”, musically, sounds like it could have come from Dream Theater’s “Falling Into Infinity” album from 1997. It was an instant save and add to a playlist.

“Human Touch” starts off with a “I Love It Loud” drum groove, but then once the music kicks in, it was time to pick up my guitar. Bands like W.E.T, Eclipse and Work Of Art are doing songs like this, a new take on old sounds from bands like Journey and 80’s Genesis.

And there are songs which don’t connect on the album but when they do, they are instant saves like “Falling Out Of Love” and the very Dream Theater sounding “We Are The Fire”

Silverthorne

Brian Tichy on drums and Pete Shoulder on guitars/vocals put this project together. Bassist Daniel Spree came after.

Soul Blues Rock is how I would call it, taking you back to the sounds of the 70’s. The EP is called “Tear The Sky Wide Open”.

“Black River Rising” sounds like a 70’s Whitesnake cut and “Haunted By The Dawn” is a Led Zeppelin cut. Once you hear em, you will know exactly what I’m talking about.

They are on my radar, what comes next.

Bon Jovi

It’s not the Bon Jovi I know nor the band that I grew up with in the 80’s and early 90’s. They lost me a bit in the mid 90’s but they got my attention again between 2000 and 2007, until they slowly lost me.

The best way to sum up the “2020” album is to not compare it with any Bon Jovi albums that came before.

Just think of a brand new solo artist, starting off and this is their debut album.

“Blood In The Water” still gets streams from me. It has that “Dry County” influence which I like and the lyrics are some of Jovi’s best. It’s solely written by Jon Bon Jovi, then again so is 90% of the album, with just a few co-writes with Billy Falcon and John Shanks.

“American Reckoning” has this musical vibe/groove that gets me interested. Lyrically, its JBJ at his best. We all know what happened, when George Floyd said, “help me please, I can’t breathe”.

Chris Stapleton

The album is out as I type this but this blurb is for the song “Cold”.

The song reminds me of a song from Paolo Nutini called “Iron Sky”. “Iron Sky” came up in a Spotify playlist years ago and it was an instant save. I checked it out recently and it has over 60 million streams. The groove and vocal melody just captured a different musical side in me. Well “Cold” sounds like a carbon copy of that same song, and I like it just the same.

Reside

The track is “Fallen” and it connected with me because it sounds like Anberlin with a little bit of My Chemical Romance merged with the pop side of Coheed And Cambria.

And I like it.

I’m interested, let’s see what comes next.

Royal Blood

“Trouble’s Coming” is the release here. Another song which pushes their modern rock Sixx AM vibe a little bit further.

Kari Kimmel

It was in the ending scene when Jonny Lawrence threw his phone in the sand and set fire to his Cobra Kai painted car.

Yep, if you grew up in the 80’s, “The Karate Kid” was everywhere and now in the 2020’s “Cobra Kai”, the YouTube series which was purchased by Netflix is everywhere.

And the song “Cruel Summer” appeared, I pressed Shazam and I was hooked.

Icarus Witch

It’s a Def Leppard cover of “Mirror Mirror” with Joe Lynn Turner assisting. It’s from their 2007 album, “Songs For The Lost”. It came back in my life when I went and revisited their catalogue on Spotify and added it to the playlist.

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My Stories, Unsung Heroes

Hello Darkness

“Hello Darkness my old friend, I’ve come to talk with you again”.

My brother was recently singing these words after hearing the lyrics in an Arrow TV episode. He didn’t care much for music or songs, so it was a surprise to hear him sing these lyrics or even remember them.

And then, just like that, I lost him to a brain aneurysm on Friday. He collapsed at home, had a massive bleed in the brain and by the time he was in hospital, he was on life support.

The Dr’s didn’t sugarcoat it. They said he’s gonna die, and for some insane reason I thought of “Die With Your Boots On” from Maiden.

Music always gets me through.

Once they turned off all the machines, he didn’t even last an hour.

51 years old. And it’s his 52nd birthday on Wednesday.

“The Sound Of Silence” has taken on a new meaning.

My bro always had a joke in him about death.

He would say to me, “make sure, Pete, there is a mobile phone, fully charged, put in the coffin with me, just in case I wake up and need to call for help.”

Or he wanted his face painted like a scary clown so he could freak people out at the viewing.

And he said to me to make sure a certain song is played at his funeral.

“Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again?”

“No way, get fucked, fuck off.”

He was the ultimate shit stirrer. I’m gonna miss him.

Rest In Peace bro.

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

Sacred Groove

“Sacred Groove” from George Lynch came out in 1993. It is a solid album, combining instrumentals, with hard rock songs and different singers.

The best instrumental track by far on the album is “Tierra Del Fuego”. A six minute tour de force in Flamenco Hard Rock music.

Then you the D-tuned instrumental, “Love Power from the Mama Head”, which has all the trademarks riffs and licks that George Lynch is known for.

And, a nice little Western sounding number in “I Will Remember”.

The best vocal track is “We Don’t Own The World”, that has vocals by Matthew and Gunnar Nelson. Prior to hearing this track, I really had no idea who the Nelson brothers where, however after hearing the track, I sought them out and I came across their excellent “After The Rain” album.

“Flesh And Blood” has Ray Gillen on vocals. This is a rare gem as Ray was to pass away that same year.

Glenn Hughes involvement with George Lynch goes back to the Lynch Mob days, when he recorded scratch vocals on the second album, so that new singer Robert Mason could follow. On Lynch’s first proper solo outing, he sings on two songs, “Not Necessary Evil” and “Cry Of The Brave”.

“The Beast” Part 1 and Part 2 has Mandy Lion on vocals. Can’t say I am a fan. Would have been better to not include these two songs and the opening track.

This was his final album commitment to Elektra Records and a return to Dokken was in the works.

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

1977 – Part 8

Legs Diamond – Legs Diamond

The cover is a great piece of art, with an electric guitar resting on the back of a bullet riddled car boot. A perfect drawing for a band named after a gangster.

This is their debut album, released on Mercury Records with Derek Lawrence producing. I’m pretty sure it’s the same Lawrence who did Angel and Kiss albums on Casablanca. And Mercury records didn’t know how to promote the album, nor did they give the album any budget for promotion.

“It’s Not The Music” kicks it off and it rocks hard. “Stage Fright” starts off with a riff that sounds like something that Rush would use for “Limelight” and a vocal line that Robert Plant would be proud of. But the style of the song is more Deep Purple.

“Satin Peacock” has a riff which is instantly memorable. Rumour has it that Gene Simmons liked the song so much, he wanted to record it for Kiss.

“Rock And Roll Man” is an interesting song, with riffs, a flute (yes, a flute) and a solo that starts off with fast open string pull off licks before it goes into the usual pentatonic stuff.

“Deadly Dancer” has a bass riff which can sink ships. “Rat Race” is a blues groove rumble in the verses and a metal like cut in the Chorus with a nod to some Deep Purple.

“Can’t Find Love” has a two minute synth like intro before the distortion blasts out of the speakers.

And the album is full of cuts that move between rock, blues rock and progressive rock.

They only made three albums during this period, before breaking up in 1980 and then reforming in 1984 after their first three albums started to become cult favourites. But that re-formation failed to capitalise on any of the MTV success that other bands started to receive.

Nazareth – Expect No Mercy

The Frank Frazetta drawings just kept on making appearances on metal and rock albums. And Frazetta also inspired other artists to make their own derivative versions of his works.

This is Nazareth’s ninth album in seven years.

Nazareth at this stage had more in common with the soon to be NWOBHM than what they were known for. And this album is a weird amalgamation of blues, rock, country, funk and metal. In other words it’s a typical 70’s album, when bands had diversity and weren’t scared to try things out.

Guitarist Manny Charlton by this stage was also in the producer’s chair.

The original cut of this album was rejected by the label on two occasions because of its heaviness. And man, those label heads would have been thinking, “what did we do here, allowing these guys to self-produce”. The songs that got left off appeared on another album as bonus tracks. I can’t remember which one.

And what a frantic song the title track is?

As soon it starts, it’s in your face. Its part blues, part speed rock and it sounds like nothing else at that point in time.

Then “Gone Dead Train” kicks in and it’s like a 12 bar blues song with some Rolling Stones chucked in. Then again, it’s written by outside writers in Jack Nitzsche and Russ Titelman and appeared on The Crazy Horse albums with Neil Young. In other word, a country rock song which has been Nazareth’d.

“Revenge Is Sweet” brings back the energy of “Expect No Mercy”.

Neil Young – American Stars ‘N Bars

The song, “Like A Hurricane”.

It’s deep in the album. I’m glad I stuck the course because the first few cuts didn’t get me interested.

As soon as the fuzzed out lead break started, I was hooked. And then Neil Young started to sing that lead break as the vocal melody. It’s in a minor key and so sad, while the Chorus is in a major key, providing some contrast.

Then the lead break starts and Young is bleeding the emotion out of the guitar, bending notes, missing notes, skipping strings, raking strings, making mistakes and then repeating small little three note licks. He’s in the zone and I don’t want the lead break to stop.

But.

It comes back again, as an outro solo. And at 8 minutes long, I never got bored.

Jackson Browne – Running On Empty

Maybe it was The Eagles or a comparison to Bob Seger that got me to check out Jackson Browne.

This is a live album, not sure how much of it is live or re-recorded in a studio or how much crowd noise got added in the mix. Regardless, it’s a cool listen and if Jackson Brown and his band sounded like this live, then it was worth the price of admission. Then again, tickets went pretty cheap back in those days.

As soon as the first chords started to “Running On Empty”, I could hear what Springsteen would become in a few years’ time. Take a simple groove, jam it, embellish it with different vocal melodies and you have a song that you can’t get out of your head.

As soon as the fingerpicked notes started for “The Road” I was interested. There is just a lot of good guitar playing in this song.

Then there is a cover song. “Stay”. It brings back memories of watching those movies set in the 60’s and early 70’s.

Eddie Money – Eddie Money

Eddie Money came on my radar via interviews with Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora in the late 80’s. His name was dropped a fair bit.

The opening track “Two Tickets To Paradise” just rolls along uneventful and then the Chorus comes crashing in and I’m hooked. 70’s melodic rock is so different to what came after as it’s rooted more in blues and country rock. This track could have been on a Bob Seger album and it would have worked. It could have been on an Eagles album and it would have worked.

Then the chords start to “You’ve Really Got A Hold On Me” and the groove gets me interested. “Shandi” from Kiss comes to mind.

The feel is different to the opening track because it’s a Motown cover (originally released in 1962 by Smokey Robinson) and done in Money’s bluesy soul vibe. The Beatles even covered this song on their second album, “With The Beatles”.

“Save A Little Room In Your Heart” continues the blues soul ballad vibe.

“So Good To Be In Love Again” has a vocal melody that is memorable, a piano riff that brings a Spanish like feel and guitar licks and leads to decorate the song nicely.

The riff to kick off “Baby Hold On”, if you just add distortion, some metal phrasing, you get a monster. If you add the feel to “Lose Yourself” from Eminem, you get that Eminem song.

How good is the intro riff and groove to “Don’t Worry”?

If it doesn’t get your foot tapping, check for a pulse.

“Got To Get Another Girl” sounds like the cuts that Richie Kotzen and Joe Bonamassa would end up writing many years later. A bluesy guitar riff with a blues soul rock vocal.

Jimmy Lyon on guitar is a star on this song and on the album overall. And it’s funny how Lyon and Money came to work together. Both were discovered by a Columbia exec and paired together by the same exec.

“Gamblin Man” closes the album, a typical blues rock song in the vein of Free and Bad Company. And for a debut, there isn’t much wrong with it.

Peter Gabriel – 1: Car

It’s not actually called “Car” but given that nickname because of the Strom Thorgerson cover that features a car.

Produced by Bob Ezrin and he knew how to get the best out of the musicians.

One song sent this album out into the world.

“Solsbury Hill”. It’s perfect.

The acoustic riff is instantly recognisable, the synth lines the same and that vocal melody from Gabriel, wow.

And it’s no surprise that Ezrin called in Steve Hunter who he used for Alice Cooper on the Welcome To My Nightmare album for the acoustic guitar playing. Robert Fripp from King Crimson also plays guitar on the album, while future Crimson band member Tony Levin is on bass.

“Modern Love” also rocks out of the gate.

“Slowburn” feels like a Sweet song. The solo hooks me and it’s no surprise that its done by Steve Hunter.

“Down The Dolce Vita” has a horn movie like section for the first 40 seconds, but then a rock funk cut explodes out of the speakers before it morphs back into the cinematic orchestral hits and back to the rock funk. There’s no way you can’t like it. Its progressive in the sense that it incorporates different sonics and genres.

“Here Comes The Flood” percolates until it explodes into a solo section from about 3.30.

And then that outro chorus section. Massive and powerful. These are techniques here that Ezrin would use for “Comfortably Numb” in a few years’ time.

Davie Bowie – Heroes and David Bowie – Low

Two albums in a year.

Of course, “Heroes” is a stand out here, and on Spotify it has reached close to 232 million streams. But I prefer the cover from “The Wallflowers” in the 90’s which isn’t on Spotify.

And nothing huge came from “Low”.

“Always Crashing In The Same Car” has this quirkiness which I like.

“Be My Wife” is excellent musically, so don’t let the terrible title mislead you. “A New Career In A New Town” feels like a country rock song, with a bit of 60’s pop chucked in. There is no singing, just music and the mood it creates.

I can’t say I’m a huge fan of Bowie, but man, when he wrote songs that crossed over, didn’t they capture the zeitgeist. If not by him, by the people who covered them. And his quirkiness and experimentation led to other artists taking inspiration from that to create their own special.

Well we go back to 2000 for part 9.

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

1985 – Part 8

UFO – Misdemeanor

I was always on the fence when it came to UFO in the 80’s without Schenker, however I always tried to get access to their music.

It’s studio album number 12 and no one really expected the band to return after they called it quits during the disastrous tour supporting “Making Contact”.

But music is a lifers game and Phil Mogg is a lifer. He spent some time in LA and through his association with Shrapnel boss Mike Varney, he came across guitarist Atomik Tommy M. His real name is Tommy McClendon and after UFO he spent time with Brian Wheat and his band Soulmotor plus a few other LA bands.

So Mogg decided to form a NEW band, with Atomik Tommy M and bassist Paul Gray, who played on the “Making Contact” tour. Another UFO bandmate in Paul Raymond joined on keys and drummer Robbie France completed the line-up.

They started writing and Chrysalis Records was interested to sign them. But the catch was, they wanted to sign them as UFO and not as a new group.

Experienced producer Nick Tauber was tapped to produce. Thin Lizzy and Marillion are two bands that come to mind when Tauber’s name is mentioned. And of course problems came about during the recording process over contracts and payments. Drummer Robbie France left before the recording started and was replaced by former Magnum drummer Jim Simpson. And Paul Raymond quit the band during their US tour in support of this album.

One thing that really stands out is the synths in the songs, which makes this sound like a modern album, more in the vein of a couple of Canadian acts like Loverboy and Honeymoon Suite. And that’s not a bad thing. Also each lead break from Atomik Tommy M reminds me of Bruce Kulick and how he got a lead spotlight on the synth heavy Kiss songs in the mid to late 80’s and totally nailed each spotlight.

I remember the website Ultimate Classic Rock rating this as the second worst UFO album. This is what they said;

“By 1985’s ‘Misdemeanor,’ UFO, like many of their classic-rock peers, had been tragically infected by ‘80s studio disease: a grotesque but common affliction that covered its victim in sonic warts like synthesizers, triggered snare drums and squeaky guitars. At the time, UFO’s prognosis was bleak (unless you were a Starship fan!) but the band recovered from these ailments in due time.”

A Mogg and Gray cut called “This Time” starts the album with a memorable synth riff and a solo section which reminds me of Boston at the start and then some shred kicks in.

“One Heart” and “Night Run” are written by Gray, Mogg and Tommy McClendon. They are your typical AOR style of songs. So far removed from UFO’s 70’s sound and output, but artists do grow and change and sometimes they change because they are trying to fit in and remain relevant and sometimes they change because the members change.

“Mean Streets” is a song in which the guitar takes centre stage and its totally worth the wait. That riff is nasty, there’s a sense of danger to it. And it’s a co-write with Tommy McClendon.

“Name Of Love” is another co-write with McClendon, so it’s no surprise that it kicks off with a hard rock guitar riff, before it morphs into a Honeymoon Suite style of song. And how good is the lead break?

“Blue” and that outro with the finger tapped solo. It’s the shining light for me on a Mogg and Gray cut.

“Heaven’s Gate” has a crazy intro (which is brought back into the song in the outro) and a guitar solo which is guitar hero worthy. It has melody and it has speed and Bruce Kulick comes to mind. It’s also written by McClendon and Mogg.

This album is often ignored or despised or it’s a cult favourite. I enjoyed the mainstream AOR rock approach and even though it was meant to be a NEW band, there are still some classic sounding riffs in here.

The Alan Parsons Project – Stereotomy

Named after a word from an Edgar Allan Poe book, which means “the cutting of existing solid shapes into different forms”, and on this track its used as a metaphor for fame and how artists are shaped and cut to meet the demands of fame.

I like TAPP because AP uses different singers and his albums have a playlist/mixtape feel.

And how good is the title track?

It’s a cross between The Police, Journey and Loverboy. Lead vocals are handled by John Miles, who already had a successful progressive rock career up to this point.

“Beaujolais” is basically The Police with vocals by Chris Rainbow nailing that Sting vibe.

“In The Real World” has John Miles on vocals again and musically it could have come from an Autograph album.

“Where’s The Walrus?” is an instrumental that could have come from a Beverly Hills Cop movie.

“Light Of The World” reminds me of Marillion, like those synth led ballads. It has Graham Dye on vocals, from the English progressive rock band Scarlet Party.

And the album closes with “Stereotomy Two” with John Miles on vocals again.

Molly Hatchett – The Deed Is Done

This album is way to underrated.

Like the UFO or Phil Mogg solo album, this is a band bringing in contemporary and modern sounds of the time into their music. It would have upset the hard core fans but that doesn’t mean it didn’t rock. And one band comes to mind listening to this album, ZZ Top and their albums, “Afterburner” and “Eliminator”.

“Satisfied Man” sounds like it came from those ZZ Top albums and a certain song called “Sharp Dressed Man”. Regardless, I like it.

“Backstabber” could have been written by Gene Simmons for a Kiss album.

“She Does She Does” has the riffs, the brass sections and it’s party time, about a baby who has the looks and the moves.

I feel like “Stone In Your Heart” might have influenced Desmond Child or Desmond Child might have influenced Molly Hatchett, as I hear his song writing style with Bon Jovi.

“Good Smoke And Whiskey” is another track that could have come from the “Eliminator” album. It’s perfect.

“Heartbreak Radio” is back to their traditional Southern Rock and Blues sound but it’s a Frankie Miller cover who is one of the best soul rock blues singers ever.

“Straight Shooter” is dripping in blues rock attitude and a favourite. And album closer “Song For The Children” is probably one of the best Led Zep III instrumental cuts that Jimmy Page didn’t write, with its acoustic arpeggios, strumming and delicate medieval like lead.

Tear For Fears – Songs From The Big Chair

I hated the album cover. It’s a picture of Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith. My metal and rock brain couldn’t compute how I could like the tunes made by these dudes. Talk about a bias, hey. I didn’t even want to hold it in my hand at the record store because it was gonna lose me some street cred with my mates.

But the songs.

Man, they could write songs. And that’s what is important to me.

“Shout” kicks it all off and then it’s followed by “Everybody Wants To Rule The World”. The lyrics touch on everything that is real and topics that are still relevant today.

Nikki Sixx even took inspiration from “Shout” for “Primal Scream”.

There is some fluff on here, but “Head Over Heels” redeems the album, which makes up the holy trinity of songs to push this album into the stratosphere.

All up, 8 songs and most of em don’t follow your average pop formulas, with extended intros or interludes or outros.

Dire Straits – Brothers in Arms

There was no escape from this album.

Mark Knofler delivered on this one, staying true to his bluesy rock and roll pop influences to satisfy his core and bringing in some contemporary and modern sounds and riffs to pull in a whole new generation of fans.

“So Far Away” doesn’t really forecast the monster that would invade the airwaves and MTV. That track is called “Money For Nothing”.

Did he write it as a sledge to Motley Crue and he even called em, Yo-Yo’s?

That riff, the only way to play it is with your fingers. Don’t even attempt to use a pick, because it doesn’t even come close to capturing the feel, sort of like “Smoke On The Water”. Blackmore plays that intro with his fingers.

And if “Money For Nothing” didn’t grab ya, the sweet sounds of the 60’s boardwalks would with “Walk Of Life”. But that’s not all, the sweet notes of the saxophone kick off “Your Latest Trick” and I couldn’t turn it off. If the album ended here, I would have been happy.

Then “Ride Across The River” begins and the groove just hooks me in. Hearing this song again today, reminds of the songs that Gotye created. It has these kind of grooves. Just listen to all of the midi key riffs.

The closer and title track, “Brothers In Arms”, how good is it?

The feel, the guitar licks, the folky feel and the way it percolates. This is writing to please oneself and not to please a chart. And when this kind of writing happens, it crosses over and translates to many.

Aerosmith – Done With Mirrors

According to legend, this album did huge numbers in Thunder Bay. In Australia we didn’t even know it existed as Aerosmith’s comeback was tied with “Permanent Vacation”.

“Let The Music Do The Talking” kicks off and it’s loud, it has groove, it has slide guitar and Steve Tyler is bringing out his rock and roll blues. Plus it’s a re-recording from Joe Perry’s solo album released a few years before.

“My Fist Your Face” has an intro that sounds like it belongs on a 70’s Sabbath album, but from the verses it’s your typical Aerosmith song.

“She’s On Fire” is my favourite. That slide acoustic guitar riff is excellent, and while Kramer and Perry and everyone else claim the record is uninspired and terrible, there is no denying the quality of the riffs here. Then again, when you a have history of guitar store riffs in your discography, these ones might seem like off cuts.

And since Led Zeppelin wasn’t making any new music, then its Zep sounding cuts on albums from other artists that would satisfy the Led Zep fans. Like this one.

Well that’s a wrap for another 85 post and over to 77 we go for Part 8.

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