Showing posts with label music. Show all posts
Showing posts with label music. Show all posts

Holidays in the Sun

It's been three decades since the Sex Pistols exploded onto the music scene, introducing the world to punk rock and give the whole music world a swift kick in the rear.

While the band didn't last long, here's one of the most famous songs - a wild, frenzied rocker entitled "Holidays in the Sun":

... which we're planning on real soon, once this thesis is dead and buried ... any freakin' day now ...

The new Motley Crue song kicks ass

.. reporting live from an all-night writing and research session at the Addlestone Library on the CofC campus ...

Before long, the fossilized remnants of the band known as Motley Crue are expected to emerge from a strip joint somewhere in Southern California to release their new album, "The Dirt".

The first song on their new album, "Saints of Los Angeles", is a kick-ass, hard rockin' track comparable to their earliest days, before Theatre of Pain began their long slide into the pop gutter. Check it out - and make plans to buy the album when it hits the shelves.

Here's a YouTube of the audio clip:

Four ballads in two minutes

Folks, we're still on thesis hiatus but we didn't want to let this space go unfilled or make y'all think we'd forgotten you're still tuning in.

Today's "While you wait" filler isn't - believe it or not - more William Shatner. Instead, we wanted to share this video of the Stormtroopers of Death performing ballads about the lives of four notable music figures: Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Kobain and Tupac Shakur.

We're big fans of music, and believe us, few songs that we've heard have said so much with so few words.

Enjoy the video, and while you're at it, be sure to enjoy the weekend too:

Beastie Boys' early punk days

For those of you who only know the Beasties as a rap band, here's a curveball:

They started out in the 80s as a hardcore punk band. Really.

Don't just take our word for it ... here are some YouTube clips from some of their shows from the early 80s:

Rush's "Moving Pictures"

As was promised to some lawyers the other day (we really did), it's gonna be a little quiet here in the Blogland for the next couple of weeks. A thesis, a couple of technical proposals and an upcoming conference will keep us quite busy.

So, if we can't take the time to discuss real news, we'll just throw out an album review of "Moving Pictures" by Rush. This album is a kick-ass piece of rock and roll that belongs in everyone's album collection.

Those of you who are old enough will remember two early 80s rock radio staples: "Tom Sawyer" and "Limelight". If you didn't crank the audio up to full-blast to those songs (or still want to) ... well, we feel sorry for you.

Red Barchetta tells a tale of a future where personal cars are forbidden, except for a young rebel who takes a ride in his uncle's long-concealed red Barchetta. YYZ is an instrumental which taps out the morse code spelling of YYZ. For those of you who don't know (we're willing to bet that Moye does), YYZ is the airport designation for Toronto's international airport.

At any rate, we're gonna get back to an action-packed week. But if you want to make your week a little better, this is an album that will do the trick.

The System has Failed: Megadeth that works

In many album reviews here in the Blogland, we look at those surviving 80s hair bands who continue cranking out solid material, even with a fraction of the album sales and concert attendance numbers of their heyday. Megadeth's 2004 The System has Failed album is more proof that an 80s band two decades removed from their heyday does NOT have to suck.

Believe it or not, a clip from one of the songs on that album, "Die Dead Enough" is my cell phone's main ring tone.

If it's good enough for my cell phone, it's good enough for your album collection. Go buy it.

Here's a YouTube clip of the song so good it's on my cell phone:

... and live footage of "Something I'm Not", from their Gigantour 2005.

The Pretenders' debut album

In what is sure to be a bit of a puzzling sidetrack from our usual fare of heavy metal album reviews, we're going to share one of our Christmas presents with you: the Rhino Records re-release of the 1980 debut self-titled album by The Pretenders.

This album featured the original, but short-lived, lineup of Chrissie Hynde, James Honeyman-Scott, Martin Chambers, and Pete Farndon. The video for Brass in Pocket received a lot of play in the early days of MTV, helping the band build a strong following in the United States, the homeland of lead singer Hynde.

The Pretenders, along with The Police and Elvis Costello, came up in the era of the British punk revolution. Like the punk bands, the Pretenders turned back the clock to the original blues and rockabilly influences of rock, but then went forward in a different direction than the UK punk bands.

Like the punk bands of their time, every song feels real and genuine, with a straight-on attitude. Unlike those bands, a lot of different directions are explored throughout the album, and one can easily pick out a wide range of influences, including punk, blues, 70s guitar rock, reggae, and rockabilly.

It's a solid piece of work, and if you're interested in slowing down a little bit, this is a CD well-worth buying. The re-release contains a second disc of outtakes, demos and live versions of cuts from the album, so spend a little more and get the whole enchilada.

Here are a couple of YouTube clips ...

Brass in Pocket

Tattooed Love Boys

Boarding the Mothership with Led Zeppelin

We normally don't discuss compilation albums here in the Blogland, nor do we typically waste our own time and money on such things. For music fans, they are often a lame way to squeeze more sales out of the same old stuff we've already heard.

But there are rare exceptions to that rule. Led Zep's "Mothership" 2 CD set is one of them.

On this album, you get a good slice of classic Led Zeppelin, from the beginning to the end, remastered by Jimmy Page himself. So you get something that sounds cleaner and a little better than anything else you've previously bought.

We enjoyed cranking this up in the car all the way home the other night, so that means it's pretty good stuff.

For those of you who are looking for last-minute Christmas present ideas, this may not be the one for those who have everything Led Zeppelin, unless they're obsessed about having everything Led Zep. However, if there's someone you know who you think would like an introduction to some classic hard rock and roll, this two cd set would be the perfect gift.

It's Friday - all aboard the Crazy Train

We mark this Friday by inviting y'all to join us on the good ol' crazy train with Ozzy:

Make it a great weekend out there!

Sebastian Bach rises with Angel Down

Recently, we’ve seen a lot of acts from the 80s put out some of their best stuff in years – Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, and Warrant are three that we've talked about here in the Blogland. You can easily add Sebastian Bach’s first album in eight years, Angel Down, to the list. This album definitely exceeded expectations and comes across as an outstanding piece of metal that would fit well in anyone’s collection.

Not content to rest on his 80s laurels, his band includes some great new metal talent, including guitarists Metal Mike Chlasciak (Halford) and Johnny Chromatic, bassist Steve DiGiorgio (Death) and drummer Bobby Jarzombek (Painmuseum). The end result is an album that hits you hard from the first track, with a great combination of classic Bach and newer metal influences. There’s not a bad song on this album.

Axl Rose, whose appetite for dysfunction has put his music career into the basement and made Chinese Democracy one of the biggest jokes in metal history, does three songs on the album with Bach. While each of those songs is solid and Axl sounds great, you start to wonder if Axl’s really that hard up to record something, and it hits you – yes, Bach actually has his act together better than Axl. Who’d have ever seen THIS day coming?

Whether you’re an undergrown 80s headbanger like myself, or lean towards today’s faster, darker metal fare, you’ll find this album has plenty of offer. This offering from Sebastian rocks just as hard as anything he’s put out, on the Skids or not. Those of you who miss the old Skid Row days will find this album a heck of a treat, but be warned, it’s no time machine back to the 80s.

In any event, it’s a great piece of metal, so get out there and buy it.

A Twisted Sister pin ... on your uniform?!?

Long-time headbangers will no doubt recognize the line from the guy who played Neidermeyer from Animal House when he starred in the Twisted Sister video. Well, thanks to a couple of soon-to-be newlyweds in California, their engagement party featuring the Twisted Ones will be a fundraising tribute to our troops:
So imagine that you and your boyfriend just got engaged.


A) Uncork the champagne and call your folks

B) Rush out and buy a copy of Modern Bride

C) Borrow $100,000 to book the ’80s big-hair band Twisted Sister with the hopes that you will sell enough tickets to make all your money back, and then some.

If you picked C, your names would be Megan Moore and Danny Peykoff.

The couple dreamed up the scheme on the heels of their engagement in September (while listening to a Twisted Sister song) as a way to start their marriage off on the right foot.

Our hats are off to these folks ... and our fists in the air for such a hard-rockin' idea for such a great cause. If they weren't all the way in California, you can bet the Blogland would be there!

Kevin DuBrow: Thanks for the rock and roll

It's a sad day in Headbanger Land with the news breaking that Quiet Riot frontman Kevin Dubrow was found dead at his home in Las Vegas yesterday.

I got turned on to Quiet Riot back in middle school. They were loud, agressive, and Dubrow was full of attitude. Riding MTV's rock and roll wave, their major label release, Metal Health, sold over six million copies and became one of the most noted metal albums of the 80s.

The crazy masked and straight-jacketed dude was one of the most-recognized metal mascots, right up there with Iron Maiden's Crazy Eddie and Megadeth's Vic.

After their second album, the underappreciated Condition Critical, they began to stumble and never seemed to really get their footing again, even as other bands pulled back together and started hitting the roads, albeit to much-smaller audiences than their heyday. When I started getting back out to the concert scene the last 3-4 years, they were one of the few bands I never got to catch up with, and I'm sorry I didn't.

There are few who did more to make me metal than Kevin Dubrow and the boys from Quiet Riot. There are more than a few of us out there from those days who might've turned out perfectly average and normal, but thanks to Kevin and company, we're all crazee now.

May his memory be eternal.

Green Eggs and Ham

We've received complaints that the Blogland is not providing enough family content these days, and like you, we're really worried about that.

To respond to those criticisms, we've asked the boys from Ludichrist to perform "Green Eggs and Ham", their retelling of the classic Dr. Seuss kids' tale.

Vains of Jenna's rocks hard on "Lit Up/Let Down"

The last day of the month and here is the last of the three album reviews that we promised to deliver as part of our ROCKtober efforts:

Any band which consider's Motley Crue's Too Fast for Love album their number one musical influence has got to be a great band, and Vains of Jenna, four hard rockin' dudes from ... Sweden ... have got what we're needin'.

Their first album release, Lit Up/Let Down, is a hard, fast, straight-up rock and roll metal gem, in the best LA tradition. From the first track on this album, they hit you hard, hit you fast, and don't let up. You can pick up influences of the Crue, Guns n' Roses, LA Guns, all put together and thrown at you as fast as the early Crue stuff was.

But don't mistake these guys for hair band wanna-be types who are just a cut above some lame cover band. They dish it out with their own style and attitude, building upon the influences of these great bands to come up with their own breed of great metal. This is a must-get album, so shut up and go get it!

In the meantime, check out their live show:

House of 1000 Pleasures

This song was first recorded in the mid 80s by EZO, a short-lived Japanese heavy metal band, and then redone by Loudness, another Japanese metal band formed by several former EZOers.

The most kick-ass opening of a metal song I've ever heard is the first 30-40 seconds of the classic "House of 1000 Pleasures". Go take a look at this You Tube clip:

Libertad: Velvet Revolver Re-loaded

Billed by Sammy Hagar "the best rock and roll band left on the planet", the super-group Velvet Revolver, led by Scott Wieland of Stone Temple Pilots and with three former Guns and Roses members, give us a great second hard-rocking piece of work with their new release "Libertad".

If you wanna know which songs I liked best from the CD ... She Builds Quick Machines, She Mine, and American Man. But there is not a single bad song on this entire album and everyone I've talked to has their favorite songs.

As with the first Velvet Revolver CD, I can't help but wonder why Axl is struggling to put out a single album while most of the REAL former Guns are continuing to tour and put out solid work without any of the drama. These could have been great GnR albums, except Axl's appetite for dysfunction wouldn't allow that.

While we can't do anything about Axl, you can make sure you don't miss out on a great album from a great rock band. Go buy Libertad today.

While you're reading this, here's a You Tube treat - the video for their first release from the album, entitled "She Builds Quick Machines":

Today's warm fuzzy message

This morning we can't think of much to say, but we felt it's always important to start one's day out with positive messages ... uuhhhhh ... who are we kidding? This is the freakin' Blogland we're talking about.

Anyway, we've got a YouTube video from the guys with Ugly Kid Joe with a real positive message, going out to one of our regular readers on what could be considered a special day. To that reader (and others) ... click on the photo ... and we hope you like it ...

The Donnas ROCK with "Bitchin'"

As part of the Blogland's ROCKtober 2007, we promised you a look at three new releases from new bands who carry on the best of the 80s hard rock traditions, but without coming across as a tired cover band ... and as always, we deliver.

First up is one of this year's most important album releases, a great piece of work from The Donnas, a hard-rocking all-female lineup. Everything about this album, from the cover art with an 80s-esque logo to the hard rockin' tunes on the disc, screams great rock and roll with a solid connection to the long tradition of 70s and 80s headbangers.

This quote from an interview on their website explains in words what you'll find in the music about the connection between this album and 80s-era metal:

As for their sound, “We’ve always felt somewhat sceneless,” says Castellano. “But these days, when we go to a metal show I feel like ‘these are our people!’ That’s where I really feel the connection-Motley Crue, Cinderella, Aerosmith, Def Leppard-that’s where I want our band to be.”
The first song on this album, the title track - Bitchin', will hit any real metal fan like a hammer, and before you know it, I promise you'll find yourself listening to the rest of the album cranked all the way UP:

You're gonna listen up
We're gonna take you over
You're gonna lick it up
And you're gonna want more, more, more, more!
This is what it sounds like, When heads roll!
This is what it sounds like, We're all going down!
This is what it sounds like, and you're gonna want more, more, more, more!
More! More! More! So hold on tight!
This is one band that I've gotta go see play live. Even if you've got to skip lunch at work for a week to buy this CD, go out and buy it. You'll be glad you did.

In closing, the usual YouTube eye and ear candy from a live performance:

Blogland, the Soundtrack album?

Having gotten through my campaign for State Treasurer, where I tied with the Governor's candidate, with a slogan and theme song, both suggested by Blogland readers, it occured to me that perhaps there needs to be a soundtrack album for the Blogland. Since it's ROCKtober in the Blogland, it seems to be a great time to do this.

So, the question to you, my readers, is what songs would you recommend for this album? Get creative, but please keep in mind that it needs to be something I might actually be caught listening to.

I'll give one of the two remaining ROCKtober prize packages to the best suggestion. If you post anonymously, be sure to email me as well to make sure I know who you are for prize purposes.

So start making those recommendations ...

The Blogland's ROCKtober Reader Appreciation Contest

At the Blogland, we've become fond of saying that we're the one South Carolina political blog that doesn't just talk politics - we ROCK politics. While a lot of Republicans want to bring the President of the 80s, we're the Republicans who want to bring back the rock and roll of that decade too.

Over time, we've noticed a tendency by our readers to raise a clenched fist in the air and call out "Blogland" like they're yelling "Megadeth" or "Anthrax" or the name of some other great metal band. I guess we, like William Shatner, have become a bit typecast ... except our hair is real and we can't offer you great deals on travel via the Internet.

This year, our daily readership has doubled, and our comment volume has gone up tremendously. That's not because of us - it's because of YOU, and we're amazed, we're flattered, and we're appreciative.

We'd like to show our appreciation by offering a prize contest in which three lucky winners will win prize packages featuring the Blogland's irreverent mix of hard rockin' heavy metal and great political reading:

Prize package 1
Two books: “1945” by Newt Gingrich & “Bare Knuckles and Back Rooms” by Ed Rollins
Three CDs: Anthrax’s “Sound of White Noise”, “Painkiller” by Judas Priest, and Van Halen’s self-titled CD.

Prize package 2
Two books: “1945” by Newt Gingrich & “Bare Knuckles and Back Rooms” by Ed Rollins
Three CDs: Anthrax’s “Volume 8: The Threat is Real”, Black Sabbath’s self-titled CD, and Skid Row’s self-titled CD.

Prize package 3
Two books: “1945” by Newt Gingrich & “Behind the Oval Office” by Dick Morris
Three CDs: AC/DC’s “Back in Black”, Dangerous Toys’ self-titled CD, and Ozzy Ozbourne’s “Blizzard of Ozz”

How can YOU be a weiner in the Blogland without being Rick Beltram? It's easy - email me your name and contact information (that's to " You'll also need to answer a couple of easy questions which will serve as a sort-of market survey - but there are no right or wrong answers:

  • Q1: What do you like or hate (or both) about the Blogland?

  • Q2: How long have you been tuned in and how often do you visit?
Three lucky winners will be drawn at the end of the month, and at some point in the following weeks, I'll track you down, wherever you're hiding in or near the Palmetto State, to give you your prize package.

Only those readers who are in the state of South Carolina, or in the Augusta, Charlotte, or Savannah metro areas, are eligible for this contest. Even Rick Beltram and others who've been criticized here on the Blogland are eligible to enter.