Especially when you start to get AI-generated songs that sound like copyrighted bands and it starts to become a bit more complicated.
In the case of AC/DC and Metallica, the AI Bot scraped all the lyrics the bands wrote and wrote new lyric passages. But a human still needed to discern which lines to use. And for these songs, the music and vocals are performed by a person.
For the AI Jimi Hendrix song called “You’re Gonna Kill Me” and the AI Nirvana song called “Drowned In The Sun“, the organisation behind these songs had AI algorithms created to listen to hooks, rhythms, riffs, chord structures, solos, melodies and lyrics of the artists and then the AI learns how to generate a new string of ideas that could be used for songs. And the same AI used to create the AC/DC and Metallica lyrics was used to create the lyrics for these songs.
The AI would create about five minutes of new riffs, which only 10% was usable. So humans would then take out the stuff they thought was good and discard the rest and then press the create button again for a new 5 minute sample of music. And the process will repeat, until there are enough new ideas to create a song. So while the music is computer generated, it’s still a laborious task to put it all together by a human.
Also the vocals that the AI produces are just mumbles and hums that outline a melody, which you sort of get to hear on the Hendrix track, but for the Nirvana song, the vocals are handled by a Nirvana tribute singer, so it actually sounds like a Nirvana song.
Finally the “The Lost Tapes of the 27 Club” project was created to highlight mental health, but it also reminds us that there is still a lot of human involvement and decision making to create a song based on musical ideas generated by a computer.
On March 28th, 1995 “Skid Row” released their third album “Subhuman Race” on Atlantic Records. 26 years ago.
This is the last Skid Row album with singer Sebastian Bach and drummer Rob Affuso, and the last one to be released on Atlantic.
No one in Australia even knew of the issues that the band was having with Sebastian Bach and his arguments with Rachel Bolan. And the album charted really well in Australia, reaching Number 5 on the charts.
Bolan many years later described the album as a nightmare to do because the band was pressured into doing the album, even though they had fallen apart internally, and the change of producers who had different ways of doing things didn’t help. Bolan wanted Michael Waegner to remain but Bob Rock was given the gig.
Sebastian Bach also said that the sounds are dated, which is no surprise that the album tracks which appeared on the greatest hits album got remixed and cleaned up.
The album didn’t have the same level of commercial success of their two previous albums.
But I still like it.
Because I first became a fan of the band because of the lyrics and Rachel Bolan is still a master at writing some kick ass lyrics.
Keep the peace when face to face with the scene Got a hunch that ain’t what you really mean Weather’s fair, does that change where you stand? My back is turned and the knife is in your hand
Doesn’t it piss you off when people put shit on you to get ahead.
I always saw this song as a sign of the times.
I read interviews from Blind Melon, Pearl Jam and Kim Thayil from Soundgarden in Guitar World where they put shit on bands from the 80s and on guitar players who could shred. It didn’t need to happen as all of those bands operated in different sonics and different headspaces.
There’s always room for all of em in my life.
Walk all over what I believe But I’m still here, you disappear
Only if it’s true. People who shit on you, are always around to shit on you a little bit more.
Only if you let them.
If the weight of the world is on your shoulders Then carry it for a day
Love that lyric.
Beat Yourself Blind
Pour me a chemical to take away the edge
Maybe I’ll pour a chemical to give me an edge.
Eileen’s calling me to sit awhile and talk to trees
The mind is a fragile thing. But it can be trained to be tough but it can also make you disconnect from reality.
Taking liberties; burned by your dictation
Taking liberties means to “behave in an unduly familiar manner towards a person” while dictation means “the action of giving orders authoritatively or categorically.”
Conformity to someone else’s way of life who sees you as subhuman never ends well. Stand your ground and fight for your views and beliefs.
Show me a sign To a light that shines One direction into another Sheltered peace of mind
This song reminds me so much of Rush, in a musical sense.
And I’m always looking for new ways to make life better, but man, sometimes it would be great if there was a sign.
Life comes and goes, quick as does the day
Blink and you will miss it.
Time’s a breathing bomb, going with the flow Stand atop it all outside the status quo
It’s easy to say “I will live outside the circle” but the status quo is a tough undertow to avoid.
Hide from all the hell and wash up with the tide Wait and you commit psychological suicide
You need to be in the chaos to survive.
Break the molds of beg and submission
A brilliant line to be who you are. Don’t let anyone file down your rough edges that make you unique.
The Recording Industry is a section of the “music industry.”
But the Recording Industry likes to sell and market itself as the Music Industry.
The Music Industry is everything.
There is the recording industry who are involved in getting artists to recording and releasing music. The release can be via vinyl, CD’s and mp3’s and streaming.
But there is also licensing, touring (and people involved with touring like drivers, road crew), merchandise, publishing, musical instruments (sellers, manufacturers and buyers), music hardware, music software, video production and many more.
And a lot of movement was happening within governments around internet privacy. So I was asking the question, where is the outrage from artists.
There is a lot of press about outraged artists due to streaming and piracy but when it came to their internet privacy being sold to a corporation, there was nothing. Not even a word.
Governments deny that climate change exists and people scream in protest. Governments take away more of our privacy and there is silence.
Circa 2011, the MPAA stated that piracy losses amounted to $58 billion.
How did they quantify the amount?
They didn’t, but they used it over and over again when they spoke to politicians about getting new laws written up.
I remember seeing that Transformers 1 (T1) and (T2) where the most pirated movies over Bit Torrent. T1 made $710M and T2 made $840M. T3 wasn’t on any torrent list and it made $1.3 Billion.
Maybe because the people that downloaded a torrent of T1 and T2 became fans and paid to watch T3. Maybe those little kids that downloaded T1 and T2 became fans and are now old enough to go to the cinema on their own and watch it.
One thing is certain, piracy is designed by the lobby groups so that they can get stupid legislation passed that puts them back in control of the distribution.
This album (their third in three years) came out in 2016. And since this release, they have released “Beautiful Strange” in 2018 and a few single song releases in 2019.
There is also a cool single called “Spaceman” released in 2015. Check out the cover.
Paul Laine is on production duties and does co-lead vocals on the song “Wink And Smile”. There’s a cool story as to how Laine got involved with the band. Go to the YouTube account of The Radio Sun and you will see a documentary called “Paul Laine And The Radio Sun”.
Laine also appeared on stage with the band on a small run of Australian shows.
Guitarist Brett Garsed from John Farnham/Nelson also appears on “Falling For You”.
The band is made up off Jason Old on lead vocals, Stevie Janevski on guitars, Robbie Erdmanis on bass and Ben Wignall on drums.
Their style is pure melodic rock. It doesn’t stray whatsoever in the same way that AC/DC doesn’t stray from their style.
“Can’t Get You Out Of My Head”
The guitar playing from Janevski gets me interested. The vocal melodies are layered and the Chorus sounds massive. Make sure you check out the singalong lead break.
Musically the song reminds me of “Walk With A Stranger” from Skid Row, which was a song they played on the scene before they got signed and Trixter covered.
“Standing On The Edge Of Love”
It’s got that melodic rock riff that seems to appear in every melodic rock song. But. I don’t care. I like it as much as I like a 12 bar blues shuffle.
“You’ll Never Know”
The Chorus hooks me.
“Fall To Pieces”
It’s got a fast pedal point head banging riff to kick it off like a song from the “Surfing With The Alien” album by Satriani.
The outro is excellent.
“Wink And Smile”
A melodic lead kicks off the song. Paul Laine features on this.
“Falling For You”
Brett Garsed appears on this. Make sure you check out the solo section. It’s Garsed at his shredding best.
The band also covered “After The Rain” from Nelson. It’s on YouTube.
And for a melodic rock band they are not on Frontiers or from Sweden. But from Australia.
It’s great how the label gets the money when I click buy on the item, as they put up money for the album to be made, but as a fan I still don’t have the physical album.
Let me explain.
Evergrey is one of my favorite acts. They will always be a favorite, regardless of the crap service of their label.
When I saw they had a few different release packages set up for the new album “Escape Of The Phoenix”, I was interested to get one.
The album release date was set as 26 February, 2021.
So on 23 December, 2020, I clicked buy on the EVERGREY – Escape Of The Phoenix – Ltd. Artbook (incl.CD + 7″-Picture-Vinyl). The only place that had it was the AFM store and all the items come from Germany.
The price for the item was €43.86 EUR.
As i was going through with the purchase, I get hit with a €23.99 EUR shipping and handling fee. And I’m thinking, it’s half of the cost of the item. And with most items during the pandemic coming via sea you would think that the shipping would be less.
Anyway the total price came to €67.85 EUR and the Exchange rate at the time was 1 AUD = 0.588771 EUR.
So the final price of the album for me came to $115.24 AUD. I thought fuck it, I’m a fan and it’s coming up to Christmas. Plus I was a few bottles of wine in.
So I clicked buy.
On 19 February, 2021, I got an email that the item had shipped.
You would think AFM would post it a bit earlier for international orders but hey labels have never been customer centric or very smart in that regard, treating their customers as potential pirates, but their whole business model is based on customers.
Hell, I became an Evergrey fan because of piracy.
Since 20 February, 2021, the tracking number tells me that the item is still in Frankfurt, Germany.
On 26 February, 2021, the album hits streaming services and I crank it.
On April 1, 2021, I sent AFM an email and told em, nice April Fools joke as I don’t think I’m ever going to receive this item as it’s still in Germany.
I’m waiting a response.
Now for the album, it’s excellent. And I’ve already reviewed it.
Thank god for streaming and pirates and everyone else who allows access to the music. It allows the fans to crank it.
But the labels don’t realize that the people who buy physical editions are collectors and we can’t wait until we get the item in our hands.
And I normally have about six to ten records on a post but in this case it had to be one album as it’s one of my favorite Evergrey albums.
So Part 1 is broken up into 1.1 and 1.2.
“In Search of Truth” is the third studio album and first concept album by Evergrey. It is the first album to feature guitarist Henrik Danhage and bassist Michael Håkansson, as well as the only one to feature keyboardist Sven Karlsson. Founder and mainstay, Tom Englund is on vocals and guitars with the very underrated Patrick Carlsson on drums.
Produced by Andy LaRocque, who had produced all the band’s previous albums up to now.
The album deals with alien abductions, based on the allegedly factual account of alien abduction victim Whitley Strieber’s book “Communion”.
The album cover was created by Swedish graphic designer Mattias Norén, who I once contacted for a possible album cover for an album I was involved in, before I decided to go with Brazilian artist, Gustavo Sazes.
An alien abduction story can be sort of blah, but Englund is the master at showcasing his personal side in the lyrics. So what we hear lyrically is how the main character struggles to understand what is happening and how scared and confused they are.
Less than 5 minutes and what an opener. One of my favourite songs from Everygrey. Make sure you check out the live version on “A Night To Remember”. They do a Maiden “Running Free” singalong after the lead section which is perfect.
And the music video clip, with people painted to blend in the walls is unsettling as their eyes open, as the main character is being watched at all times.
“I have decided to keep this tape recorder with me at all times. Just so that I maybe one day can explain all the strange things happening to me. The lack of sleep…the loss of time. But most of all, the sensation of never being lonely…always being watched…”
And then the 7/8 syncopated intro blasts off.
Then that Chorus. The constant double kick, the power chords and the vocal melody which sings;
We are all a part off, forced to live within, a conspiracy for ages, the masterplan
The next time the second chorus rolls around, there is a little melodic lead before it. It’s a “why not” moment, to break up the verse and chorus structure.
The instrumental section in the interlude, the lead break and how they come out of this interlude and back into the Chorus. A masterpiece.
Make sure you check out Henrik Danhage’s outro lead break.
“Rulers Of The Mind”
It has another memorable intro.
The stomping drumming in the verses reminds me of “Kashmir”.
There is this orchestral choir happening over one of the lead breaks, which is unsettling.
And how good is the Chorus vocal melody and we had to live through an intro, two verses and a solo before we got to it. And then there is silence and a piano line. And slowly, it rebuilds up.
Make sure to check out the lead break at the 3.50 mark. Then at 4.21 those orchestral choirs come back in. They are cinematic and desperate. And the last 50 seconds, the Chorus reappears.
At 6 minutes long it didn’t get boring and I press repeat.
“Watching The Skies”
It feels like a Malmsteen or Dream Theater cut with the keyboard solo. And the double kick drumming from Patrick Carlsson is relentless, fast when it needs to be and syncopated when it needs to be.
Check out the section from 4.05 and the excellent lead break kicks in at 4.45.
“State Of Paralysis”
It has a haunting piano riff to kick it off and Englund is in theatre mode as he plays a fearful and confused abductee.
“They’re coming, they’re coming”
Englund keeps repeating those words.
“State of Paralysis” and “The Encounter” are basically the same song split into two different tracks. This one is progressive. Like Dream Theater “Awake” style of album.
Make sure you check out the guitar solo at the 3 minute mark and there is this ten second guitar melody that plays between 3.50 and 4.00.
And those same words, “they’re coming” keep reappearing.
“Mark Of The Triangle”
This is probably Evergrey at its progressive best, with tempo changes and technical playing. But still accessible.
The start alone has the bass locking in with the kick drum while the synth plays chords and the guitars play a lead.
This morphs into the guitars syncopating, with double kick drumming and the keyboard playing a melodic lead.
And it quietens down to the verse, which is just bass, piano and drums with a vocal melody.
At 1.30 the trademark Evergrey syncopated riff kicks in. It’s their style.
The whole guitar solo section from 3.55. Listen to the piano riff that kicks it off. All the pop songs from Max Martin use it. It’s a Sweden thing.
At the 5 minute mark the synths become dominant and its cinematic.
The symphonic choir is haunting.
At 2.44 there is a different symphonic choir for a few seconds that reminds me of “Suite Sister Mary” from Queensryche. Which isn’t surprising as Queensryche is listed as an influence.
And the last three minutes of the song is epic, reminding me of songs like “The Aftermath” and “The Storm Within” from their recent albums.
How good is the piano intro?
And then Englund sings, with all his emotion.
The piano takes centre stage again at the 50 second mark with another iconic riff.
Then it goes back to the piano intro and an acoustic guitar with more vocals.
At 3.26, it’s the tape narrative again about, “oh god, it’s happening again”. The piano is haunting and at the 4 minute the guitar solo begins with big bends.
The album closer. It starts off with a piano riff and then the band cranks in.
Listen to the ahh choir before the Chorus and then there is a blast beat section of furious double kick before the Chorus kicks in.
Each verse has a different riff but within the same chord structure. Its creative and a progressive way of thinking.
At 2.59, it’s the style of Evergrey that they have carried to this day, syncopated staccato guitar riffs with a keyboard melody over the top.
The whole guitar solo section and coming out of it needs to be heard.
And then its silence, with a taped piano riff playing and Englund singing, “I’m crawling back to sleep” before the whole band kicks in.
I have to mention again that Tom Englund is a very underrated vocalist. Each song bears his emotion and soul. You hear anger, sadness, hope, fear and happiness. His voice is strong, ballsy, unique to him and it avoids sounding like a Geoff Tate or Ray Adler or Bruce Dickinson or David Coverdale copycat which a lot of artists started doing to get a break in the market. And throughout this album, his voice moves between strong and bold to panic, crying and whimpering in “Different Worlds” as he narrates, “Oh, god, it’s happening again / I don’t wanna be here / I wanna go home”.
This was also Evergrey’s first release on German label, “Inside Out”, a move up to a bigger label from their previous independent label. For the label, Inside Out, 2001 was a big year as they released “Burn the Sun” from Ark, “Terria” from Devin Townsend and “In Search Of Truth” from Evergrey, all seen as defining albums in the progressive metal genre.
It’s a double album, released in two stages. The first part is “The Afterman” Ascension” and the second part is “The Afterman: Descension”.
It is the first Coheed and Cambria album since 2005 “Good Apollo, I’m Burning Star IV, Volume One: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness” to feature Josh Eppard on drums, and the first to feature Zach Cooper on bass.
I purchased the deluxe version of the album.
In summary, “The Afterman’s” story takes place at the start of the saga. It follows Sirius Amory, an astromner and his All Mother spaceship as they explore a powerful energy source known as the “Keywork” which is powered by the souls of the departed, imprisoned in some form of purgartorial afterlife.
There is an AUTHORS NOTE in the book which states that “the world within the Keywork is the first stop of the two levels of the afterlife.
The first, where Sirius is at the moment, is actually more of a purgatory, though the souls are unaware that this is not necessarily their final resting place. Once the souls stop looking out only for themselves, shirking the “me, me, me” attitude that leads to regret, unfinished business and unrest, they can move to the collective consciousness, to the perfect Utopian afterlife.”
And as Sirius explores this energy source he starts to encounter the souls of these people and their stories are told in the “Key Entity Extraction” songs I to IV.
A piano riff kicks it off. You can hear the keys hit the strings.
Claudio Sanchez transposed the “The Ring In Return” melody into this. The piece is meant to express the anxiety Sirius is feeling before he heads out into the Keywork.
There is a narrative between Sirius and Mother who is the onboard AI of his spaceship, who promises to be with him all the way as he enters this mysterious energy sournce.
Key Entity Extraction I: Domino The Destitute
The intro which reminds me Dream Theater’s “Learning To Live” outro and “Wasted Years” from Iron Maiden was enough to get me to lose my shit.
Domino is one of the first lost souls Sirius encounters.
It’s a personal song about the troubles that former bassist Michael Todd was involved in, after falling in with a bad crowd and the addictions he had.
But its told in the story of a boxer named Domino, who had it all to be a champion, but fell in with the wrong crowd, throwing fights and using drugs. One day he convinced his brother Chess to help him and his gangster friends with an armoured car robbery, which went horribly wrong and Chess got shot. Domino unable to go on, took a gun to his mouth and ended it.
The digital delay riff is excellent. A beautiful and tragic song.
It takes place on Valencine, the home planet of Sirius and how his wife Mary reacts to seeing a breaking news report which states: “Controversial researcher Sirius Amory feared dead after unexplained explosion, ending privately funded endeavour to self-professed “Keywork””
Mothers Of Men
The intro riff gets me interested to pick up the guitar and learn it.
Sirius discovers that the Keywork doesn’t discriminate against positive or negative energy. It’s all energy in the end and valuable at that.
Goodnight, Fair Lady
Can there be a pop rock song about a serious subject matter like date rape?
In “Goodnight Fair Lady”, Sirius’s wife is at a bar and her drink gets spiked. She is saved by an Officer called Graves Colten. The Officer will eventually become her love interest.
Key Entity Extraction II: Holly Wood The Cracked
The second entity is a wannabe starlet, fixated on celebrity culture who would go to dangerous lengths to feel she was connected to celebrities.
All the songs on this album are from personal experiences, which have been made to fit the narrative as in this case, Claudio also had some fan stalkers during his time.
Key Entity Extraction III: Vic The Butcher
The albums most rocking song.
Vic was a tyrant Army General who did anything to get into power and did anything to stay in power. He is rage in the Keywork.
He asked a promising soldier called Sentry to kill innocents, but Sentry refused (you will get his story in the next Afterman review) and Vic ordered other soldiers to kill Sentry.
Eventually but at an older age, Vic was charged with war crimes and was due to stand trial for them, but he ended up burning the building he lived in, with both he and his wife inside and hundreds of others.
Key Entity Extraction IV: Evagria the Faithful
“Evagria The Faithful” is the opposite of “Vic The Butcher”.
The Yin to the Yang.
She rescues Sirius from Vic’s tight grip. She has shed her human consciousness and transcended into the Utopia. She operates on a part of the Keywork which is in perfect harmony and oneness. She keeps the other entities away from Sirius but she can only hold them off for so long.
This was supposed to be a Prize Fighter Inferno song (a Claudio Sanchez side project which also continues the story from a character in the earlier albums).
The song deals with the thoughts of Sirius and how with his relentless need to explore the uncharted territory, he is also driving his relationship with Mary to breaking point.
And the first part of the album ends with “The Afterman: Descension” next.
Phil Demmel, lead guitar player for VIO-LENCE, formerly of Machine Head is on The Jasta Show. For hard rock fans, Jamey Jasta is the person who wrote the majority of material for Dee Snider’s “For The Love Of Metal” album and working with Dee on a new album. Plus he has albums out as a solo artist and as part of Hatebreed.
I didn’t know of Demmel until he joined Machine Head and I then saw a past link between him and Robb Flynn, when they both did time in the band VIO-LENCE.
It’s a great easy chat between em. Just two muso’s talking and catching up.
Demmel talks about the moment he passed out on stage in Europe at the same time his Dad passed away in the U.S. And he’s spiritual, taking into his life the concepts he likes from Christianity, Buddhism and other religions.
He talks about children.
He found out he has a 33 year old daughter who messaged him via Facebook while he was on tour with Machine Head in the 2000’s and is a product of a 1987 one night high school romance. He has another child from a previous relationship as well.
He also had a vasectomy in 2009, which he then reversed when he got engaged to Bleeding Through keyboardist Marta Peterson in 2012. They have one kid via IVF and another one which “is a miracle”, according to Demmel.
Demmel laughed about never taking the easy route in life.
And both Jasta and Demmel talk about how kids give them focus. Jasta got into podcasting because his daughter wanted to get into it. And I can relate. My kids wanted to make stop motion mini movies so I learned about stop motion. I started to blog because my kids wanted to blog and I did it to show them how. They blogged a few times and stopped.
He talked about his earlier high school bands playing covers of Maiden, AC/DC and Def Leppard. He plays aggressive music and is known for his work with Machine Head but his influences are the same as all of ours, when everything was known as Metal before the labels made up different titles for every sound.
He joined Machine Head in 2002 and he was still working a tradie job, up until 2011. Once the Jackson endorsement money started coming in, he could become a full time musician.
Think about that for a second.
He played and toured the world for a 9 year period and in downtime, had to hustle on a building site for a payday. He remained in Machine Head up until 2018 and he laid down a lot of crushing riffs and a lot of iconic solos, ala Randy Rhoads song within song solo moments.
A listener asked him some of his favourite tracks he’s been involved in.
Demmel mentioned “Farewell To Arms” as he wrote the intro and outro and those sections still give him chills, the Chorus to “Locust” and some of the melodic contributions to “Darkness Within”. “Killers and Kings” was also mentioned as a song he wrote 95% of music to.
He loved being in Machine Head, it was a band he wanted to be in and stay in, but it got to the point where Robb Flynn was going in one direction musically and Phil Demmel was going in another direction musically. So he bailed.
He’s still emotional about the way it ended, the awkward tour and the goodbyes. It wasn’t a clean break, and Demmel mentioned how none of his past break ups have been clean. They’ve all been pretty professional in relation to the departures. He spent 16 years in the band and 98% of it was good, so he’s not going to let the 2% take over the 98%.
If you havent heard him play check out “Darkness Within” and “Locust”.
The great Martin Popoff released a book a while ago called “10 Albums That Changed My Life”.
Jake E Lee was one of the artists who gave Popoff his top 10.
The albums “Bark At The Moon” and “The Ultimate Sin” with Ozzy Osbourne introduced Jake E Lee to the masses, but its “Badlands” and “Voodoo Highway” which really showed what Jake E Lee is all about.
But that all ended by 1991.
Since Badlands, he became a recluse and did a few solo releases here and there and he sold some gear for extra cash. He eventually re-appeared with the “Red Dragon Cartel” which didn’t set my world on fire, but as a fan, it was great to have him back, recording and releasing music. And with every release he does I’m still interested to hear it.
So here are the 10 albums which changed Jake E Lee’s life?
Ozzy Osbourne – Bark At The Moon
His first album with Ozzy Osbourne, who told the world he wrote the album with one finger and a piano.
Lee said that this record changed his life. It was exciting to work with pro musicians like Bob Daisley and Tommy Aldridge and to write with Bob Daisley (but Ozzy is credited as the only songwriter on the album) and to record in a foreign country.
The song “Bark At The Moon” is almost at 72 million streams on Spotify. And who can forget that intro riff and the outro solo.
Scorpions – Virgin Killer
This is what Lee said about the album.
“I was in bands by this point. I was going through a lot of different bands.
I was in a funk band and we had a full horn section and I loved playing that stuff.
I was also in a fusion band, where we did a lot of Return To Forever and Mahavishnu Orchestra. It wasn’t a popular band, but it was a fun one to play in.
I was in a rock band and for me, at that point, Ted Nugent was huge but he was not really my cup of tea. He sort of simplified everything and it was making it less interesting and I was getting a little bit tired of rock.
So I think the only band I really enjoyed back then at that moment was Scorpions. Uli Jon Roth was a beast on guitar. But like I say, I was not 100% in rock. I was in other bands that interested me more.”
When “Bark At The Moon” came out, Lee came across as very accomplished and experienced, but when you look at the hours he put in with different styles and different bands, you get an idea of the work ethic in place to expand his mind outside of just rock music.
Led Zeppelin – III
Lee saved up his allowance to buy this album and it became his favourite Led Zeppelin album. This is what he had to say on it.
“I heard “Immigrant Song” on the radio and it was such a nasty riff and a spooky song and I was like, great, this album’s going to be bitchin’.
And I took it home and that’s the only song like it on the whole record. It pissed me off.
I tried to take the record back and they wanted to know why.
And I said, “Because I don’t like it”.
“You can’t bring a record back just because you don’t like it”. And I was stuck with it for the next month, until I could buy another new album. So it was the only new music I could listen to then.
And then it grew on me.
After a month, it was and still to this day is, my favourite Led Zeppelin record. And the reason I wanted to address that is, I kind of feel like our Red Dragon Cartel record “Patina” is like that, most of the songs on there aren’t immediately accessible.”
That’s how it was when you had to buy a physical album. Like it or not, you were stuck with it, so you listen to it a little bit more and you start to like it a little bit more. But from the mid 80’s, a lot of filler started coming onto records and it didn’t matter how many times you listened to the album, you just couldn’t like all of it.
And what are people’s views of “Patina”?
I listened to it once and filed it away. It’s time to get it out and give it a re-listen.
Deep Purple – Machine Head
Lee listened to “Machine Head” a lot as he liked Ritchie’s blues influence and how he made a Strat sound so big and powerful. At this stage, Lee was a Gibson guy.
But when he made his debut to the world with Ozzy he was a Strat guy.
Montrose – Montrose
Lee talks about Ronnie Montrose and how he should have been more applauded than he was, because he was a monster guitar play, with a great tone who could write solid songs.
Aerosmith – Rocks
The first record he got from Aerosmith was “Get Your Wings”. It made him a fan, but it was “Rocks” that became his favourite because of the looseness in the guitar playing of Joe Perry.
Van Halen – Van Halen
Lee basically said, when Van Halen came along, they changed his life.
When this record first came out, he quit the other bands he was in and just stayed within the rock bands. They did a lot of Van Halen covers and he started to write songs in this style.
He goes on to say “Eddie’s playing really turned everybody’s thoughts on how to play guitar upside down”.
Long live the King. RIP. EVH.
Jimi Hendrix Experience – Band Of Gypsies
Lee mentions how “Are You Experienced” is the reason he picked a guitar up, but “Band Of Gypsies” is the album he can’t get enough of.
Lee mentioned how Hendrix was so much harder to learn than the other guys like Page and Clapton, and I agree with him. The other guitar players stuck within normal shapes and patterns when it came to leads and playing, whereas Hendrix was different. Lee called him “John Coltrane on guitar”.
Iron Butterfly – In A Gadda Da Vida
This was Lee’s first rock record he purchased. Before that, he was exposed to James Bond soundtracks. He thought it was the heaviest thing he ever heard.
Black Sabbath – Black Sabbath
Lee thought Iron Butterfly was the heaviest thing he ever heard and then he heard the Black Sabbath debut. Nobody sounded like that according to Lee.
I posted another post previously when Jake E Lee mentioned his Top 5 guitar solos in a July 1989 Guitar World interview. And he more or less has stayed true to what his top 10 albums are.
The list is Jimi Hendrix and “Red House” from the “Hendrix In The West” album released in 1971.
“Crossroads” from Cream’s “Wheels Of Fire” featuring Eric Clapton.
“Since I’ve Been Loving You” from Led Zeppelin “III” featuring Jimmy Page which shouldn’t be a surprise.
“Mean Town Blues” from Johnny Winter and “Stratus” from a Spectrum album featuring Tommy Bolin.
I always like to highlight some of the bullshit that Copyright spews up. For a law that’s meant to protect the artist, it’s a instantly abused so that Corporations benefit. And pretty soon, expect to see laws change that benefit investment funds.
I wrote about how the RIAA/MPAA are large perpetrators of fake news in the world. When billions of dollars are involved, these industries employ some of the most creative writers in the business to basically creating fictional works of fakery. Does anyone remember these ones.
Home Taping Is Killing Music And It’s Illegal
Copy a CD and get a criminal record
Piracy: It’s a crime
Piracy kills artists.
And I wrote about artists who made up by sharing their files with fans as unsigned artists and how some bands couldn’t include a song on an album because they couldn’t track down the original writer because of bad record keeping by the same organizations who claim to protect the artists.
Artists were also taking their labels to court for digital payments as Spotify was making inroads in the US market and these artists on deals pre tech were still getting paid on that old sale royalty deal.
My favourite Swedish supergroup of metal heads was back, playing the classic rock music I love. This time around, it’s about a galactic space opera, where the human race is pitted against female space commanders with pearl necklaces. It’s a brilliant James Bind script.
“Sinking Ship” by Harem Scarem and that funky groovy foot stomping Intro riff was on the list.
How good is Pete Lesperance on guitar?
Along with Harry Hess they have navigated 30 plus years of Harem Scarem, plus their solo work and side projects.
Other tracks that appeared are “Snakes In Paradise” by Crazy Lixx, “Never Was A Forever” by Honeymoon Suite, “Light Me Up” by Doom Unit, “Straight To The Top” by Creye, “Underneath” by Blacktop Mojo and “Big Sky Country” by KXM.
8 Years Ago (2013)
I was still on a Bon Jovi and White Lion deep dive into their catalogue. Here is a post of “We Got It Going On”. It’s the best song on the “Lost Highway” album.
At the time, Mumford and Sons who after 26 weeks on the chart, was still moving 27,000 units of their album “Babel” and in total, “Babel” had sold 2,122,000 copies.
7 years later, the “What About Now” album still doesn’t have any certification.
Where does a band fit who where promoted as pretty hair boys in tight leathers but played a brand of hard rock that was technical and who also wrote about serious themes.
Thats the predicament White Lion found themselves in. “El Salvador” appeared on “Fight To Survive”, the anti war ballad “When The Children Cry” appeared on “Pride” and on Big Game, the band was singing about apartheid in “Cry For Freedom”, religion in “If My Mind Is Evil”, Greenpeace and the Rainbow Warrior in “Little Fighter” and violence in the family “Broken Home”.