Helix - 'Best of 1983-2012'

 



Track Listing:
1.) "Danger Zone"
2.) "Running Wild In The 21st Century"
3.) "Give It To You"
4.) "Jaws Of The Tiger"
5.) "Deep Cuts The Knife"
6.) "Skin In The Game"
7.) "You Got The Love That I Like"
8.) "Good To The Last Drop"
9.) "The Same Room"
10.) "Heavy Metal Love"
11.) "Fill Your Head With Rock"
12.) "Get Up!"
13.) "Wild In The Streets"
14.) "Six Feet Underground"
15.) "Rock You"
16.) "Champagne Communist"
17.) "Animal Inside"
18.) "Make 'Em Dance"
19.) "I'm A Live Frankenstein"
20.) "Axe To Grind"
21.) "All I Want For Christmas Is The Leafs To Win The Cup"

Current Members:
Brian Vollmer
Brent "The Doctor" Doerner
Greg "Fritz" Hinz
Daryl Gray
Kaleb "Duckman" Duck

Previous Members:
Brent "The Doctor" Doerner - guitar, vocals (1975–1989, 1993, 2009–2012)
Paul Hackman - guitar (1976–1992)
Brian Doerner - drums (1976–1980, 2005–2006)
Brian Doerner - drums (1976–1980, 2005–2006)
Greg "Shredder" Fraser - guitar (1992–1996)
Glen "Archie" Gamble - drums (1997–2005)
Dan Fawcett - guitar (2002–2004)
Shaun Sanders - guitar (2002–2004)
Jeff "Stan" Fountain - bass (2002–2007)
Jim Lawson - guitar (2004-August 2009)
Cindy Wiechmann - backup and lead vocals, keyboards, percussion and acoustic guitar (2004–2007)
Rainer Wiechmann - guitar (2004–2007)
Paul Fonseca - bass (2007–2009)
Brent "Ned" Niemi - drums (2007–2009)
Rick VanDyk - guitar (2007–2009)
Sean Kelly - bass (2009)
Rob MacEachern - drums (2009)


Starting in 1983:
     Changing their image from that of a standard bar band to a more image conscious band.  After being rejected by them three different times Helix finally signed a contract with Capitol Records.  In 1983 they released 'No Rest For The Wicked' with Greg "Fritz" Hinz (ex Starchild) on Drums.  This album featured Canadian hit video  "Heavy Metal Love".  The band's next album titled, 'Walkin' The Razor's Edge' was released in 1984.  It sold over 100,000 copies in Canada and over 400,000 internationally.  The album also included their best known song "Rock You" and a cover of A Foot In Coldwater's " (Make Me Do) Anything You Want".
       In 1985, Helix released their fifth album 'Long Way To Heaven' featuring the singles "Deep Cuts The Knife" and the "Kids Are All Shaken".  The album allowed the band to tour Sweden.  Becoming the first Canadian band to do so. ♫The uncensored version of "Gimmie Gimmie Good Lovin'" a cover by Crazy Elephant featured 16 year old porn star Traci Lords
      'Long Way To Heaven' was followed by the release of 'Wild In The Streets' in 1987, featuring the title track and a cover of Nazareth's 'Dream On'.  One track on the record titled, "She's Too Tough" was written by Joe Elliot of Def Leppard.  The recording of 'Wild In The Streets' was recorded in England with Mike Stone and plagued with extensive takes and remixes.
     Tired of touring at the end of the decade Brent Doerner made the decision to quit the band.  Helix was left a four piece.
     Helix began the 90's with 'Back For Another Taste', which Doenor contributed songwriting and guitar parts to.
     After this tour, Vollmer and Hackman began writing songs with intention of Hackman's material being used for the next Helix release, and Vollmer's going towards a solo release.  Helix toured sporadically during this time, including a special re-union show in Kitchener featuring Keith Zurbrigg and the Doerner brothers.
     On July 5 1992, Paul Hackman, not wearing a seatbelt, was killed when the group's van rolled down a 40-foot embankment after a concert in Vancouver.  Recovering from the shock of his death, Vollmer regrouped with Brent Doerner once again, and also recruited former Brighton Rock guitarist Greg Fraser.  Vollmer took the songs he had recorded for his solo album, and released them as the Helix album, 'It's A Pleasure Doing Business With You'.  Periodically, through the 90's the surviving members of the classic 80's line-up would re-unite, as they did on 'b-sides- to record three new song including "Danger Zone".  This was the song Paul Hackman was working on shortly before his death.
      In order to keep new Helix product in stores, five new studio tracks were recorded and released in 1998 on 'half-ALIVE', produced by Daryl Gray, which compiled these with live tracks from previous tours. Vollmer also released compilations of hits and rare tracks, as well as his first official solo album ('When Pigs Fly', 1999) through his website. The band continued to play live through this period, recruiting new guitar players as they were available.
     In 2004, the 30th anniversary of Helix, the band released several titles to mark the occasion. Their first new studio album of all-original material in over a decade came out, titled 'Rockin' in My Outer Space'.  Two compilation CDs were also put together, 'Never Trust Anyone Over 30' in the US, and Rockin' You For 30 Years in Canada.  These albums were marked by a new Helix lineup, and for the first time since 1974, a six-piece: Vollmer, Gamble, Fountain, and new members  guitarist Jim Lawson (ex-Cherry Smash), and the husband and wife team of Rainer (guitar) and Cindy Wiechmann (acoustic guitar and vocals). Vollmer first encountered the Wiechmanns in Newfoundland when their band, KAOS, opened for 'Helix on the Long Way To Heaven tour'.
     In October 2006, the song "Heavy Metal Love" was to be featured on the soundtrack for the Trailer Park Boys movie The Big Dirty, however, at the last minute, the track was pulled by Dean Cameron, president of EMI Canada, as distribution of the soundtrack was being handled by Universal, and not EMI who owns the track.[24] To make up for this, Helix re-recorded "Heavy Metal Love" and included it on their next release, the 2006 EP Get Up! .[25] The original song was still included in the movie even though it did not appear on the soundtrack CD. The Get Up! EP itself was hyped by Vollmer as "...very reminiscent of the No Rest For The Wicked album."
     In 2007, Helix re-released all the tracks from Get Up! along with four new studio tracks on a full-length studio album called The Power of Rock and Roll. Unlike the EP, this album received both US and UK releases.  In June of that year, Helix played the 2007 Sweden Rock Festival. A new song from The Power Of Rock And Roll called "Fill Your Head With Rock" was chosen as the theme song of the festival.
      Following this, in October 2008 Helix produced their first Christmas CD. Although Brian Vollmer has recorded Christmas songs before on a charity CD for his church called Raising The Roof on Mary Immaculate, 'A Heavy Mental Christmas' was the first such release from the band. 
     By late 2008, Helix began working on a new studio album, their 12th, following up 'A Heavy Mental Christmas'. These recording sessions coincided with another new Helix lineup: In February 2009, Brent "The Doctor" Doerner joined the band for the third time.  Sean Kelly, singer and lead guitarist of Toronto's Crash Kelly, joined as the new bass player. Brent Niemi was replaced on drums by former Sven Gali member Rob MacEachern, who had actually played drums on 'Get Up!' and 'The Power of Rock and Roll' in Niemi's absence.  Jim Lawson remained on guitar, VanDyk having departed to make room for the returning Brent Doerner. Work on the new studio CD progressed with Sean Kelly co-writing and co-producing.
      In February 2009, Vollmer reunited the surviving members of the 'No Rest For The Wicked' lineup (Brent Doerner, Mike Uzelac, and Greg Hinz) to record a new version of the AC/DC classic "It's A Long Way To The Top", to be included on a compilation album.  Concurrent to the new Helix lineup and CD, Brent Doerner formed his own band, My Wicked Twin, featuring Brian Doerner, Mike Uzelac, and Shane Schedler (formerly of Kitchener's Martyrs of Melody). They released their debut CD in January 2009.
    The new Helix CD was tentatively titled 'It’s Rock Science, NOT Rocket Science!', before being changed to 'Vagabond Bones' after a song co-written by Kelly.  Doerner, Gray and Hinz all appear on the album, along with Sean Kelly, Brent Niemi, Rob MacEachern and Russ "Dwarf" Graham of Moxy and Killer Dwarfs.  The songs were described by Vollmer as music "which harkens back to our roots, yet sounds contemporary."  A western Canadian tour was played in October 2009.
     Brian Vollmer had a cameo appearance in the second Trailer Park Boys movie 'Countdown To Liquor Day', released September 25, 2009.  Helix also performed at the opening gala of the premier of the movie at the Halifax Metro Centre.
    The reunion tour has lasted into 2010 including both Canadian and US dates. Brian Vollmer also implied that he would like to continue writing for future Helix albums with former member Sean Kelly. In regards to Kelly's departure in 2009, Vollmer stated, "I give Sean my blessings, no worries. As long as we continue to write together, I am happy."
     On August 15, 2010, Vollmer announced the forthcoming release of two new Helix albums. The first, titled 'Smash Hits...Unplugged!' contains acoustic re-recorded versions of Helix hits and a cover of the late Canadian singer James Leroy's "Touch Of Magic".  The second album is a compilation called 'Running Wild In The 21st Century', containing Helix and Vollmer solo material from 1999–2010, including two unreleased tracks ("The William Tell Overture" and a new unnamed original song.)  It was originally scheduled to be released in October 2010 but was delayed until 2011, due to problems getting permission to include the AC/DC cover "It's A Long Way To The Top". It will be replaced by a new original song instead, causing the delay.

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      In the early eighties back before MTV's 'Headbanger's Ball' the USA Network had a Heavy Metal video program.  It was on this program where I saw the video for Helix's song "Heavy Metal Love" off of 'No Rest For The Wicked'.  I've been a fan ever since! 
     This greatest hits package consists of songs the band recorded between '83 to '12.  Though this makes the fifth greatest hits package that's been release.  And you may be asking yourself  what makes this greatest hits package any difference than any of the others?  Too me the biggest difference is this greatest hits package though just one disc is more of an anthology meaning it's more complete than the other four.  There is one bonus track on the release titled, "All I Want For Christmas Is The Leafs To Win The Cup".  Looking at the tracklisting I can't think of one song that's not on here that should be.  Even if you own every Helix release you should still by this album.