Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

The Record Vault: Deep Purple – Bombay Calling

It’s a 2004 DVD release of a concert recorded in 1995.

It’s Deep Purple post Blackmore and Steve Morse is the guitarist and has been the guitarist since.

Morse play’s Blackmore’s recorded parts more accurate than Blackmore ever did as Blackmore really liked to improvise.

Fireball

It opens the show and I’m struck by how very un-Metal they look.

Gillan is wearing a vest, with baggy tracksuit like pants and black slip on shoes that people involved in karate wear. It’s definitely not a Metal look but it’s a relaxed look.

And there is no stage show with pyro and backdrops. It’s just the band and their music and a few lights.

Maybe I’m A Leo

The blues groove shines through.

There’s no doubting their musical technique and prowess. Morse really shines through when he hits those fast Lydian lines in the improv solo.

And you can’t escape his Peavey 5150 amp set up. RIP EVH.

Black Night

Glover’s bass sound is monstrous so far and he really drives this song.

And Ian Paice doesn’t get the credit he should as one of the most dependable and skilled drummers in rock music. He’s thunderous on here.

The Battle Rages On

It really fits the spot it occupies in the concert.

And Jon Lord is the star here with his synth riff.

How good is it?

The song is not an easy one to perform. It’s epic Metal with a lot of exotic minor key riffs and melodies.

Check out Morse in the solo. A true guitar hero.

And have I mentioned how good Ian Paice is?

Woman From Tokyo

A classic.

That Intro riff is huge. Instantly recognizable.

And did anyone notice the drum pattern and how a certain song called “Run To The Hills” has a similar pattern.

Have I mentioned how good Paicey is behind the kit?

Purpendicular Waltz

They played an unreleased song that they were still writing. The blues rock groove definitely grabs ya and never lets go.

When A Blind Man Cries

One of my favorite ballads.

Lush keys from Jon Lord starts it all off.

And Steve Morse comes in with volume swells, delay and slides. Throughout the song, Morse is decorating with licks.

And Ian Gillan has a voice for these kind of songs.

Stick around for when Morse takes the shred solo. It’s “hairs on the back of your neck” type of soloing.

Perfect Strangers

Glover and Paice lay down the foundations which allows Lord and Morse to decorate musically.

And Gillan is in fine form here.

Pictures Of Home

Morse is in cruise control here. He’s having a blast and as the new guy, it’s like he’s always been there.

And Paice on the drums, so precise and yet so jammy.

Child In Time

When I think of this song, I think of the vocal ohhhs and ahs.

And I like how it builds and it gets louder and more intense as it goes on.

And Morse is helping Gillan here as he plays the higher pitch vocals melody on the guitar and it sounds fantastic.

Gillan then moves to percussion while the rest of the band jams out the next section. Morse is burning the fretboard here.

The music stops and Jon Lord brings back the Intro riff and groove.

Anya

From “The Battle Rages On” album. And while Morse didn’t write it, he made it sound like it was written by him in the instrumental intro.

But when the song kicks in, it’s a Rainbow tune from the Bonnet and Turner era. Maybe because Turner was involved at some stage on this album.

Space Truckin’

I enjoy this song as the way it was recorded. I wasn’t a fan of the 15 plus minutes live versions they did while Blackmore was in the band.

On this they keep it simple and just rock out.

The chromatic lines in the Chorus reminds me of stuff that Metallica would do. Just check out the Intro to “Master Of Puppets” and you’ll hear what I’m saying.

Guitar Solo

As good as the guitarists are I’m just not a fan of these kind of things.

Lazy (Including Ian Paice Drum Solo)

And they move into the Bluesy “Lazy”.

Speed King

And after the drum solo, another uptempo blues rock number begins. If you haven’t gotten the idea so far, the band has a great jam element to their live show.

Highway Star

The story behind this song and it’s creation is legendary.

Smoke On The Water

And the closer itself has a story to tell in the lyrics along with one of the most iconic riffs ever.

The 1995 Bombay show is a good historical capture of DP MK7. The show was filmed for Indian TV, and the crew did a great job. It was also the bands first visit to India.

YouTube has the whole 2 hour show, so crank it.

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The Record Vault: Dirty Americans – Strange Generation

Formed in December 2000, they come from an area outside Detroit, Michigan. And since Kiss told me that Detroit is a Rock city, the Dirty Americans well then had to rock. And they sure do.

They got the attention of Roadrunner Records a few months after forming but were kept in limbo hell by the label. They recorded demos and albums worth of material for the label, but the label kept holding them back.

After a few false starts to release an album, “Strange Generation” was finally released in Europe, Japan and Australia in March 2004. The band was also then released from their contract with Roadrunner Records, and the debut album was later released in the US by Liquor & Poker Music. I had to google the name of the label to see if David Coverdale was running it, since Whitesnake had a song called “Liquor and Poker” written for the “Slip Of The Tongue” album and even the tour in support of the album was called the “Liquor and Poker”.

I purchased the album because of its retro psychedelic looking cover and the fact that Roadrunner was the label behind it.

Like many bands during this era, it was lucrative to have your songs on video games.

The song “Car Crash” is featured on the soundtrack for the PlayStation 2 video game Gran Turismo 4 and “Burn You Down” is featured in the main menus to ATV Offroad Fury 3 and Gretzky NHL 2005.

From an Australian point of view, they had the same sounds that Wolfmother and Jet had. That throwback to the 70’s retro sound. Good old classic rock.

No Rest

It explodes like a fuzzed out Sabbath crashing into the Rolling Stones.

Car Crash

It’s like The Doors meets Molly Hatchett.

Can love be like a car crash?

I suppose you need to be in both to really know.

Strange Generation

For some reason, “Generation Swine” keeps coming into my headspace when I see this title. But it’s more similar to early Cheap Trick than later Crue.

Burn You Down

The combination of Cream like riffs in the Verses with a Blue Oyster Cult “Don’t Fear The Reaper” style Chorus is great to listen to.

Time In Space

The start reminds me of AC/DC. Musically that is.

Give It Up

A blues rocker ballad, more in sync with Grand Funk and Lynyrd Skynyrd than anything else.

Deadman

My favourite song.

It’s got this Tea Party sound and feel, which is basically like Led Zeppelin’s “Physical Graffiti” sound.

And some sections remind me of Bush in the vocal delivery.

If you need to press play on a song from this album, then this is it.

Deep End

It could have appeared on Led Zep III and fitted perfectly with the style of that album.

Way To Go

The Chorus is addictive on this.

We Were Young

It’s got a Collective Soul feel, like “The World We Knew”.

The whole album just rocks and grooves.

I didn’t skip a song when I got it and listening to it again, today, I still didn’t skip a song.

But.

Afterwards it was hard to describe or sing or hum any of their melodies.

But.

When I pressed play again, for the second time, it was all familiar again, only to disappear a few hours later after I finished listening to it.

And I’m thinking that’s why they didn’t break on through to larger things, like other retro sounding bands. They didn’t have that “Are You Gonna Be My Girl” or “Joker And The Thief/Woman” tune.

Plus it was very hard to find any information on em back then.

Checking Spotify out right now, it does have two EP’s in “Jet Black Holy Water” and “Detroit S.O.B” and an album called “Black Feather” released in 2011.

In the end, they are largely unknown to the masses. Do yourself a favor and press play.

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Music, My Stories

The Record Vault: Music As A Weapon

The Disturbed Record Vault series is almost at an end.

“Music as a Weapon” is a series of concert tours created by Disturbed. All up this tour did the rounds seven different times.

In 2001, the first edition featured Disturbed, Drowning Pool, Adema, Stereomud and Systematic.

In 2003, which is also the tour captured on the CD, it featured Disturbed, Chevelle, Taproot and Unloco.

In 2006, the tour featured Disturbed, Stone Sour, Flyleaf and Nonpoint.

In 2008, the tour came to Australia and New Zealand which I caught. It featured Disturbed, P.O.D., Alter Bridge, Redline and Behind Crimson Eyes.

In 2009, the tour featured a bigger line up, with Disturbed, Killswitch Engage, Lacuna Coil, Chimaira, Suicide Silence, Spineshank, Crooked X, Bury Your Dead, Born of Osiris and After the Burial.

In 2011, the line-up was Disturbed, Korn, Sevendust, In This Moment and StillWell. It’s also the first time the tour had co-headliners with Disturbed and Korn. The Australia and New Zealand edition had Disturbed, Trivium, As I Lay Dying, Forgiven Rival and These Four Walls.

But back to the “Music as a Weapon II”.

It was recorded at The Aragon in Chicago in 2003, and released in 2004.

The DVD also contains Disturbed’s video for their single “Liberate” and it was Disturbed’s last release with bass guitarist Steve Kmak.

On a different note, it was also Unloco’s final release before splitting up. But vocalist Joey Duenas did form a new band called “Anew Revolution” and released two excellent albums called “Rise” in 2008 and “iMerica” in 2010. But that band is also no more.

“Loading the Weapon” (instrumental)

An instrumental track from Disturbed that is not on any album. I love the mood that this track creates.

“Bound”

It then explodes into “Bound” from the “Believe” album.

“Myself”

This CD was my first exposure to Taproot. The live recording didn’t captivate me to listen any further.

“Dehumanized”

It was written and recorded for the “Believe” album, however it didn’t make the final cut. But it was played live during the “Believe” tour and released as a B side to the “Stricken” single from the “Ten Thousand Fists” album, alongside “Hell”.

And it was finally released on “The Lost Children” album.

“Forfeit”

My first exposure to Chevelle and I was instantly a fan. The live recording isn’t the best, but the Tool like grooves into a concise 4 minute song was of interest to me.

“Fade to Black”

From Disturbed.

A Metallica cover. And how good is the whole intro with the acoustic arpeggios and lead break.

“Empty”

My first exposure to Unloco.

“Sumtimes”

Taproot’s other song on the album. It’s like Staind and the track is more accessible than the previous one. But still not interested.

“Darkness”

From the “Believe” album. The piano and acoustic guitar is haunting. Draiman’s vocal delivery is excellent.

“Bruises”

From “Unloco”. This song was in “The Matrix” movies and various video games.

“Prayer”

From the “Believe” album, the fast staccato riffing in the Intro isn’t as powerful as the album version, but I do like the slight increase in tempo which makes the fast staccato riffing even faster.

And Draiman delivers vocally.

“The Red”

David Draiman makes an appearance with Chevelle. Its pitchy especially when Draiman joins in with the harmonies but that’s what performing live is all about.

“Poem”

Song number three from Taproot. The riff sounded interesting and a bit complex, so from this song, I would go on to check out more Taproot eventually.

“Stupify”

From “The Sickness” album, and Peter Loeffler from Chevelle and Joey Duenas from Unloco make an appearance.

In the end, it’s live with no studio overdubs and very different to the live albums I grew up with, (which were basically re-cut in a studio).

I also like how Disturbed put three unreleased songs on this album.

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

The Record Vault: Dokken – Hell To Pay

It probably didn’t make a big impression on me, because I forgot I had purchased it, so I purchased it again and now I have two CD’s.

The most dangerous job in the world at that point in time was the Dokken guitar player spot. After George Lynch, the band went through Reb Beach and John Norum.

For “Hell To Pay”, released in 2004, there was another newbie, Jon Levin on guitars.

Production was once again handled by Don Dokken.

The Last Goodbye

The song is written by Don Dokken, Mick Brown and Jon Levin, who quickly announces himself with a bone crunching riff inspired by “Kashmir” over a rock steady groove by Brown.

Dokken has been dabbling with exotic sounds on previous albums and that spirit has carried through on this.

Make sure you check out the lead break from Levin.

Don’t Bring Me Down

Written by Dokken, Barry Sparks and Levin.

It’s fast.

This is Levin’s statement.

That lead break.

Wow. Just listen to it.

And he did something on that lead break, not heard on a Dokken album, a harmony solo.

Escape

Another Dokken, Brown and Levin cut.

This one is like a dark rock song, almost alternative but still delivered with hooks from the 80s, something they copped shit for, but to me that’s what’s special about the album. Sounding current and modern with a sense of pop melody in the vocals.

Haunted

Another Dokken, Brown and Levin cut and one of my favourite Dokken cuts from this version of the band.

Levin goes a bit high octane bluesy in the lead break and I like it.

Prozac Nation

It’s written by Kelly Keeling, Dokken and Levin.

A familiar riff and vocal melody rule this song.

Levin goes all chromatic for his brief solo spot light.

Care For You

Written by Dokken and Keeling.

Yeah I didn’t care much about this song and I was disappointed when the bonus track was this song in an “unplugged” setting.

Better Off Before

Another Dokken, Brown and Levin cut.

A groove metal riff kicks it off, very Disturbed like.

Dokken is bringing his sense of melody to it and the 2004 version of the band is definitely rocking.

Still I’m Sad

No relation to the Rainbow song.

It’s a cut penned by Don.

It’s got groove and I like it’s three distinct parts, the clean tone verses, the distorted melodic pre chorus and the anthemic Chorus.

I Surrender

Again, no relation to the Rainbow song.

This one is also a penned by Don. It percolates with a hooky riff as Don builds it vocally.

The Chorus riff reminds me of “Unchain The Night” and I like it.

Levin is also channeling Neal Schon on the lead break.

Letter From Home

Written by Keeling, Levin and Dokken.

The band is channeling The Beatles and Led Zeppelin on this one.

The lead break from Levin is excellent. Very Jimmy Page like.

Can You See

A Dokken and Levin cut. it’s got that Dokken 80s spirit from “The Hunter” but Don’s voice is low, almost monotone like which was slowly becoming his style.

And Levin brings it again for the lead break.

If this is your first Dokken experience, there is enough here to get you interested to hear more.

If you grew up with Dokken in the 80s then this is a good listen.

C

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