Website Update: 4/29/16
News: 4/29/2016
CD Reviews: 4/29/16
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DVD Reviews: 4/28/16
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dpfinley@blastmagazine.net
(Editor/writer)
meri@blastmagazine.net
(Asst. editor/writer)






 

4/28/16:
Jorn Lande Covers Frida's "I Know There's Something Going On":

    Frontiers Music Srl will release JORN's new album, "Heavy Rock Radio", on June 3.
   One of the greatest rock singers of our time, Jorn Lande returns with a unique album of covers of classics from artists and bands that have meant something special to him, and helped forge this talented man's own unique style.
   The official video for Jorn's version of "I Know There's Something Going On", which was originally recorded by former ABBA member Anni-Frid "Frida" Lyngstad, can be seen below.
   Through Jorn's extensive career, which includes more than 40 albums of mostly original songs, he has also recorded great versions of several rock classics such as Thin Lizzy's "Are You Ready", UFO's "On And On", Deep Purple's "Perfect Strangers", and many more. Jorn also recorded a successful Ronnie James Dio tribute album, released in 2010. Every song Jorn covers is treated with the utmost respect and "Jorn-ized" accordingly. A good example is his heavy sounding version of "I Walk Alone", first released by Tarja Turunen (ex-Nightwish).
   "Heavy Rock Radio" is not an ordinary album of cover songs; it is truly a songbook of hits. Featured — among others — are great versions of the Eagles' "Hotel California" and Kate Bush's "Running Up That Hill", which gets the Jorn style treatment to become very powerful and epic, without losing its commercial touch. More great classics included are John Farnham's "You're The Voice", Queen's "Killer Queen", and two absolute melodic rock evergreen gems in Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" and Foreigner's "Rev On The Red Line".
   The original concept of the album was to create a sort of jukebox of radio hits, but to avoid leaning too much on the pop side of rock, JORN decided to blend the track listing with a few more up tempo rock tracks as well, such as "The Final Frontier" by Iron Maiden ("probably the closest you get to anything commercial with Iron Maiden," says Jorn), "Live To Win" by Paul Stanley (a song which was also featured on the popular television series "South Park"), and a few hard rock classics show up as well from Deep Purple "Stormbringer", DIO "Rainbow In The Dark" and Black Sabbath "Die Young" to complete the mix.
   Jorn says: "The most important thing was to treat these songs with respect towards the original versions. My goal was always to think that the original artist would be honored and find my version relevant. At the same time, my intention was never to try to compete with the original song and artist, but make it a strong alternative version to enjoy. At the same time, it is a well-deserved homage to these artists and bands who influenced me strongly, and I have wanted to record these songs for quite some time but was always too busy writing and recording my own songs to make it happen. Originally, I had a list of 40-50 songs I wanted to do, but I had to strip it down to about 15 songs before deciding on the final tracklist. This means that there are some unfinished business musically, and I will most likely record more of these songs in the future."
   Since releasing the critically acclaimed Dracula "Swing Of Death" album last year, Jorn has also been working on an album of brand new songs, which will be the follow-up to the 2013 JORN album "Traveller", to be released in early 2017.
   Jorn's catalogue is getting too long to include in brief press statements, and his innovative and creative skills have led to him selling millions of albums worldwide and being a frequent entry on sales charts around the world, including Billboard. Worth a mention is his years with Masterplan, with whom he recorded three albums. Claimed to be the biggest selling Norwegian musical export, since the pop band A-HA, Jorn continues his rock crusade, and there are no signs of him slowing down yet.
   The title 'Heavy Rock Radio' came quite naturally, as the sound of this album feels like if it's tailor made for any rock radio station, and while Jorn's voice can be enjoyed on more than 40 albums in different rock and metal styles, this record is a special treat which will tide over all the fans waiting for the new original album which is being worked on at the moment.
'Heavy Rock Radio' track listing includes:
1. "I Know There's Something Going On"
2. "Running Up That Hill"
3. "Rev On The Red Line"
4. "You're The Voice"
5. "Live To Win"
6. "Don't Stop Believin'"
7. "Killer Queen"
8. "Hotel California"
9. "Rainbow In The Dark"
10. "The Final Frontier"
11. "Stormbringer"
12. "Die Young"

Recording lineup:
Jorn Lande: Vocals
Trond Holter: Guitar
Francesco Iovino: Drums
Thomas Bekkevold: Bass
Alessandro Del Vecchio: Keyboards

 

 

 Geoff Tate Rules Out Return To Queensrÿche:

    On April 10, Scott Wark of Canada's The Metal Voice conducted an interview with former Queensrÿche and current Operation: Mindcrime singer Geoff Tate at The Brass Monkey in Ottawa, Canada. You can now watch the chat below.
   Asked if he would consider a return to Queensrÿche if the opportunity to rejoin the band ever arose, Tate said: "No. You know, there's a spirit of the deal. When you… How do I put it?... When you betray somebody so badly, when you hurt them so badly, it's really hard for the other person to forgive to the extent where, 'Hey, everything is fine. Let's make music.' Making music is very personal. You just don't… you just don't do that with everybody. You can't." Geoff went on to joke that he might be open to reuniting with his former bandmates "if the money was good," before adding: "At this point in my life, it's not worth that enough to go through the toxic vibe."
   In April 2014, Tate and Queensrÿche announced that a settlement had been reached after a nearly two-year legal battle where Tate sued over the rights to the Queensrÿche name after being fired in 2012. Original Queensrÿche members Michael Wilton (guitar), Scott Rockenfield (drums) and Eddie Jackson (bass) responded with a countersuit. The settlement included an agreement that Wilton, Rockenfield and Jackson would continue as Queensrÿche, while Tate would have the sole right to perform the albums "Operation: Mindcrime" and "Operation: Mindcrime II" in their entirety live.
    In a 2012 interview with "The Classic Metal Show", Tate stated about his former band: "I truly believe that my vision of Queensrÿche is what has propelled the band for many, many years. When Chris [DeGarmo, guitar] was in the band, we shared a common vision together, and we were a very strong writing team, and a very strong musical team, directing the band and pushing in a certain direction — that kind of thing. Now, when he left, there wasn't anybody but me to do that, and so I've led the band and pushed and pulled and cajoled and bribed and tried to get everyone on the same page for all these years to keep the integrity of the band intact and to keep moving ahead with our vision for what the band was, which was 'no limits.' Let's not put a box around ourselves, let's not give in to some category that somebody assigns us, let's not be who other people think we should be, let's be who we are. And that's the motto I've always followed with the band. And I was instrumental in building this band all these years — this band is mine. I built this thing — all those songs, a majority of them are my thoughts, my ideas, my creativity, my passion. It's me, it's my music, it's my words, it's my dreams, my passions. And especially 'Operation: Mindcrime', that is my baby and my work, and I'm gonna go out and present that the best way that I can."
   'The Key', the first album of an ambitious trilogy from OPERATION: MINDCRIME, sold around 2,500 copies in the United States in its first week of release. The CD was made available last September via Frontiers Music Srl.
    OPERATION: MINDCRIME's next album, which has already been completed, will arrive in September 2016.

 

Stephen Pearcy working on new music to release in 2016:

   The press release on Pearcy‘s website released earlier this month states: “Former RATT, now solo artist Stephen Pearcy has been locked in the studio off and on between shows working on his 4th solo release titled “SMASH” for a 2016 release date TBA. Touring solo 2016 (dates posted under tours) Pearcy and his drugs have at least (20) songs for the new record. Episode 1-4. (4) songs on (4) releases. Episode 1 out now! Pearcy say’s, “Every chance I get between solo dates to keep the live vibe going, we are in the studio recording in no specific order.” The recording sessions are in MT Studios in Burbank, CA.
   Pearcy has released a number of singles in 2015 on iTunes including “I Can’t Take It”,”Just One More Time”, “Recipe For Disaster” and “White Heat 1.”
   Pearcy’s Bio on iTunes states: “Stephen Pearcy jet-rocketed to multi-platinum success in the mid-’80s as the lead vocalist for hair metal band Ratt. His long-running career began in Los Angeles during the early ’80s fronting Ratt. The band released its self-titled debut independently in 1983, just as the so-called hair metal scene was gaining momentum, led by such bands as Mötley Crüe and Quiet Riot. Like these bands, Ratt was both flamboyant and rebellious, and Pearcy‘s screaming vocals and dolled-up looks helped the band stand out among its many peers. Atlantic Records recognized Ratt‘s potential and signed the band to a contract resulting in the 1984 album Out of the Cellar, which became a mammoth success, led by the pop-metal hit “Round and Round.” In subsequent years, Ratt continued to release successful albums and perform sold-out shows, yet when the hair metal scene withered away in the early ’90s — and the band with it — Pearcy decided to start anew.
    His new venture, Arcade (1993-1994), didn’t sound much different than Ratt, and he soon found himself starting over once again with the industrial metal band 'Vertex' (1996) and then yet again with the straightforward metal band 'Vicious Delite' (2000) after a short-lived Ratt reunion in 1997. By this point, Pearcy had slowly descended into relative obscurity, but he refused to quit. He began his own label, Top Fuel, aligned it with the L.A.-based Triple X label, and began issuing archival material such as Before and Laughter (2000), a collection of odds and ends from his past. He followed with Social Intercourse in 2002, his first proper solo album. By this point, Pearcy‘s reputation had blossomed a bit thanks to a curious renewed interest in ’80s hair metal. However, Pearcy took a decidedly different musical direction with 2005’s 'Fueler', which sounds more akin to alternative metal bands such as Godsmack than hair metal. The all-acoustic album 'Stripped' followed in 2006. 'Under My Skin', which featured a guest spot from the Donnas, was released in 2008.


'There's Going To Be A Mötley Crüe In Your Life For A Long Time,' Says Nikki Sixx:

       Even though Mötley Crüe called it quits as a touring entity last December after 35 years on the road, the band's bassist, Nikki Sixx, assures fans that there is plenty more material to come from the iconic Los Angeles hard rock outfit. "We have a live DVD of our last performance ever that we've just finished mixing," Sixx told Canadian rock journalist Mitch Lafon (hear audio below). "It looks fantastic. It was a great show. [And] we're gonna put [it] out."
   "We have a legacy that needs to be curated," he continued. "We have all kinds of stuff, even from vintage merchandise and stuff. So we plan on, obviously, staying engaged with our fans. It's not like we're just gonna disappear. As a touring band, we decided that that's no more. The Mötley Crüe movie will come out. We're still working on a few of the bugs there, but that's gonna work out. So there's going to be a Mötley in your life for a long time in one way or another."
    According to Billboard.com, Mötley Crüe 's three final shows at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California (on December 28, December 30 and December 31) were seen by 37,000 fans, generating $2.7 million in box office revenue and placing the trek at No. 2 on the weekly "Hot Tours" list of top-grossing tours.
    Mötley Crüe 's one-and-a-half-year "The Final Tour" saw the band perform across five continents (North America, South America, Europe, Australia and Asia) for a total of more than 164 shows in 72 markets, grossing $100 million.
    To celebrate their mark in rock music's history and in honor of their devoted fans, the band has confirmed the release of a full-length concert film of the final performance, which will also include exclusive interviews and behind-the-scenes footage of the last week of the tour, to be released later in the year. Produced and distributed by Live Alliance, the concert portion of the film was directed by Christian Lamb, while Jeff Tremaine, creator of the "Jackass" series, directed the documentary segment. The film will premiere in theaters worldwide, one night only, followed by pay-per-view in all cable/satellite/digital formats, with a DVD set to be released later on.
    In addition to the live-concert film, Mötley Crüe is planning to release a major box-set of music down the line, as well as 'The Dirt' feature film based on the band's best-selling 2001 autobiography, also to be directed by Tremaine, in the near future.
    Mötley Crüe first announced plans for their two-year "Final Tour" by signing a Cessation Of Touring Agreement at a press conference in Los Angeles in January 2014, solidifying the end of their touring career.

 

 

Ace Frehley And Paul Stanley Cover Free's "Fire And Water":

    Original Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley has just released the music video for his cover of the Free song "Fire And Water", featuring his former bandmate and Kiss's co-founding frontman Paul Stanley. Check it out below.
    The "Fire And Water" video holds its place in rock and roll history as the first time in 14 years that Frehley and Stanley have shared a stage since Kiss's appearance at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City. It's also the first time Frehley has released a music video since 1989, which was Frehley's cover of "Do Ya" by ELO and The Move.
    Frehley's cover of "Fire And Water" is taken from his solo covers set, "Origins Vol. 1", which debuted at No. 23 on The Billboard 200, having shifted 16,109 equivalent album units in the week ending April 21.
   The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week based on multi-metric consumption, which includes traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA).
    In terms of pure album sales, 'Origins Vol. 1' opened with just under 15,824 copies.
    During an appearance on KBAD 94.5's "Morning Crash" radio show, Stanley stated about his collaboration with Frehley: "Ace was doing an album of covers, songs that influenced him and that he loved, and called me. And it's always very funny, because with caller ID, I look, and the phone's ringing, and I see Ace's name come up. So, of course…"
   "Look, for all the bickering and stuff that we may say about each other, we go back to a very magical time. We started this together. So in spite of whatever we may say from time to time or things that get blown up, we are a family, and a dysfunctional one, but nonetheless a family."
    "So Ace said, 'Would you do something on the album?' I said, 'Sure. Of course.'"
    He continued: "If [Ace] succeeds, it only makes me happy. I don't wanna see anybody fail, especially somebody who I'm close to. Even if I don't speak to him weekly, even monthly, we are connected in a way that will go to the end."
    "There's a great song by Free called "Fire And Water", which was on the album with "All Right Now". Paul Rodgers, besides being a friend of mine, is one of the consummate vocalists. So to get a chance to sing something that's a little different than what I do in Kiss was something I didn't take lightly, because Paul Rodgers is a hell of a vocalist. So it was great, and it was a lot of fun, and it was terrific. And I only wish Ace well with it."
    Ace spoke to Rolling Stone about his teamup with Stanley. Frehley said: "I thought Paul did a fabulous vocal on it. He jumped at the chance to do this because it's something that's outside of KISS and his character in Kiss, and it gave him a chance to, y'know, sing. With Paul, you usually think of him singing in a slightly higher register and on 'Fire And Water', he's singing deep from his diaphragm, and it's a real cool vocal. Everyone's who heard it was just thinks it's the shit."
    Other high-profile guest artists with Ace on the new album are Slash, Lita Ford, Mike McCready, and John 5. In addition to the Free track, Ace and his guests tackle key classic rock touchstones by Cream, Steppenwolf, Led Zeppelin, Thin Lizzy, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, The Rolling Stones, The Kinks — and even Kiss.

'Origins Vol. 1' track listing:

1. White Room (Cream)

2. Street Fighting Man (Rolling Stones)

3. Spanish Castle Magic (The Jimi Hendrix Experience) (feat. John 5)

4. Fire And Water (Free) (feat. Paul Stanley)

5. Emerald (Thin Lizzy) (feat. Slash)

6. Bring It On Home (Led Zeppelin)

7. Wild Thing (The Troggs) (feat. Lita Ford)

8. Parasite (Kiss) (feat. John 5)

9. Magic Carpet Ride (Steppenwolf)

10. Cold Gin (Kiss) (feat. Mike McCready)

11. Till The End Of The Day (The Kinks)

12. Rock And Roll Hell (Kiss)

 

 

 

Tigertailz Releases Video For Cover Version Of Mud's "Dynamite":

    Welsh glam metal veterans Tigertailz have just released a video for their cover version of the Mud classic "Dynamite". The song is taken from Tigertailz ' new album, 'Blast', which is now available through all digital platforms. The CD also includes the track "Pipped It Popped It", which was written specifically for this year's Eurovision Song Contest.
    "Pipped It Popped It" was submitted to the judging panel, who choose a shortlist for a public vote, with the winner going on to represent the U.K. on May 14 in Sweden. The track, however, was almost immediately rejected.
    Guitarist Jay Pepper blasted the U.K. Eurovision panel, saying in a statement: "Was our song even listened to? Who knows, but clearly the BBC and U.K. Eurovision fan club didn't think a song and image that celebrated David Bowie's 'Ziggy Stardust', Mott The Hoople, The Sweet and T.REX was worthy of showing the British public and letting them decide. They obviously know better. Well, their track record over the last five years proves this, doesn't it?"
    The first full Tigertailz studio album in nearly ten years, "Blast" includes a full-color 12-page booklet to go in an already jam-packed ten-panel CD inlay.
'Blast' track listing:
1. "Just For One Night"
2. "All The Girls In The World"
3. "Pipped It Popped It"
4. "Bop Bop You"
5. "In The Arms Of "
7. "Dynamite"
8. "Bring It On"
9. "Crime Against Rock And Roll"
10. "God's Country"
11. "Cheap Talk" (bonus track; CD only)
12. "FnA" (bonus track, CD only)
    Tigertailz last year tapped its bassist, Rob Wylde, to sing for the group following the departure of Jules Millis. Wylde was previously the frontman in Teenage Casket Company and the U.K. Poison tribute act Poizon.
    Millis left Tigertailz in March 2015 "due to personal reasons." He joined the band in 2012 following the acrimonious exit of Tigertailz 's longtime singer Kim Hooker.
    Tigertailz 's was originally fronted by Steevi Jaimz, who left the group in 1988. Jaimz later attempted to register the Tigertailz name as a trademark with the U.K. Patent Office and launch his own version of Tigertailz with drummer Ace Finchum.
     Pepper is the sole remaining member of Tigertailz 's classic lineup.

 

Last In Line Performs At Italy's FRONTIERS ROCK FESTIVAL:

    Fan-filmed video footage of LAST IN LINE — the band featuring Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell alongside fellow founding DIO member Vinny Appice, plus singer Andrew Freeman, who has previously fronted Hurricane and Lynch Mob — performing on April 23 at the Frontiers Rock Festival III at Live Club in Trezzo (Milan), Italy can be seen below.
    LAST IN LINE has recruited Phil Soussan (Ozzy Osbourne, Beggars & Thieves, Steve Lukather) to play bass for the group for its shows in April and May. Also joining them at the dates is virtuoso keyboardist Erik Norlander (Lana Lane).
     Soussan made his live debut with LAST IN LINE on April 14 at Count's Vamp'd Rock Bar & Grill in Las Vegas, Nevada
    Freeman previously played with Soussan in the acclaimed Las Vegas rock and roll production "Raiding The Rock Vault".
    Appice and Soussan had done a number of shows together as members of the all-star jam band Big Noize.
    Original LAST IN LINE bassist Jimmy Bain passed away in late January at the age of 68. He was reportedly suffering from lung cancer at the time of his death.
    LAST IN LINE's debut album, "Heavy Crown", was released on February 19, 2016 via Frontiers Music Srl. The CD was recorded at a Santa Clarita, California studio with producer Jeff Pilson, a veteran bassist who has played with DIO, Foreigner, Dokken and T&N, among others.
Remaining LAST IN LINE tour dates:
May 24 - Ramona Mainstage - Ramona, CA
May 25 - Whisky A Go Go - West Hollywood, CA
May 27 - Rocklahoma - Pryor, OK
    In a recent interview with Glide Magazine, Vivian stated about LAST IN LINE's future: "I honestly don't know. We're not in a position where we have to make that decision yet, fortunately, because we only have this opportunity to do these handful of shows. It would have been wrong to just go out on tour a month after Jimmy died with some guy playing bass. That would have been very disrespectful. So we're just trying to find the right balance now between doing nothing and giving up and doing something to help this record and consequently further Jimmy's memory, 'cause Jimmy really believed in this record and this band. In fact, so much so, last year Jimmy got a LAST IN LINE tattoo on his arm. When he died, it was the only tattoo on his body, the LAST IN LINE logo. He believed in this project so much and he was so involved creatively in this record, and it is a great record and a great bookend to his career.
    "Like I said, we're fortunate we don't have to make that decision yet. We're just going to do these handful of shows and then I'm on tour with LEPPARD until mid-October. So if anything does happen further with LAST IN LINE, it wouldn't happen before the end of the year. So we have a lot of time to think about it and I guess, more than anything else, our decision on our future would be determined by what happens with the record. And so far it's very encouraging, the reviews and the responses have been tremendous. With that in mind, and if it continues that way, if there's enough of a desire for people to hear us play, then we probably would."