Reviews and Features For August 2015
Bruce Springsteens Born To Run was released in August of 1975 and forty years later, the eight songs that make up this rock n roll masterpiece are every bit as vital as they were in 1975.
Read the full Flashback: Bruce Springsteen's Born To Run review
Fans of these Cheyenne-based rockers have already heard two of the albums songs as Phoenix and Lost in the Crowd. Its likely that more of the songs on This is Our Rise will garner the group even more radio airplay.
Read the full First Decree - This is Our Rise review
The record is appealing in how it handles the structures of Behemoth-styled death metal while nourishing its knack for a lead guitar devoted to an array of compelling melodies and its magnificent atmosphere.
Read the full Sulphur Aeon - Gateway to the Antisphere review
Kevin Wierzbicki tells us about these new Blues releases Lazer Lloyd, Billy Hectors Old School Thang and John Cocuzzis Ding Dong Daddy in this latest installment of The Blues.
Read the full Lazer Lloyd- Billy Hector- John Cocuzzi review
The Unravelling is a duo featuring vocalist Steve Moore and instrumentalist Gustavo De Beauville. The single Master Drone is an angry little tune. It may remind you of Faith No More, back during their 90s prime.
Read the full The Unravelling - Master Drone (single) review
Kevin Wierzbicki tells us about the new rock releases: Acidics Creatures, Godsticks Emergence and Vidunders Oracles and Prophets in this latest installment of Rock Pile.
Read the full Acidic- Godsticks- Vidunder review
Child of Darkness, even if the music it contained were not incredible, holds prominence for its historical significance. These are the demo tapes of Bedemon, a squad formed in the 1970s in the pits of Arlington, Virginia.
Read the full Bedemon - Child of Darkness review
Besides having a single thats racing up the Active Rock charts, the band is bringing their new music to the country on a summer tour that will see them playing headlining shows as well as opening for bands like Full Devil Jacket.
Read the full Bridge to Grace review
When you have guys like Tracii Guns (guitar), Rudy Sarzo (bass) and Rikki Rockett (drums) making new music as Devil City Angels, you have decades worth of multi-platinum experience at work.
Read the full Devil City Angels (L.A. Guns, Poison, Ozzy Osbourne) - Devil City Angels review
This isnt something to listen to when the summer sun is hot on your head and life feels just peachy- this is for those days when anxiety and misery work their magic to give Human = Garbage its real form.
Read the full Dystopia - Human = Garbage review
More than an hour into Motley Crues final Chicago area show, the crowds arms are surging forward with fists full of fury as the chant Shout... shout... shout singing along to their seminal 1983 anthem Shout at the Devil.
Read the full Motley Crue: The Final Ride review
Jethro Tull fans will love this 2-CD/2-DVD set as not only does it present Minstrel in the Gallery in a slick remixed version (by prog kingpin Steven Wilson) but also plenty of other previously hard to find or unreleased material from the same era.
Read the full Jethro Tull - Minstrel in the Gallery: 40th Anniversary La Grande Edition review
The album is called Hammer of the Witches and it doesnt take long for the hammer to come down. It may not exactly be witchcraft but as usual Cradle of Filth have something very special going on here.
Read the full Cradle of Filth - Hammer of the Witches review
This Crypt of the Devil album is the perfect storm for Six Feet Under, and easily the best work Chris Barnes has had a hand in making since The Bleeding.
Read the full Six Feet Under - Crypt of the Devil review
One minute you are basking in the sun waiting for George Ezra to take the stage for an hour-long set and the next you are evacuating Grant Park looking for cover due to an impending storm.
Read the full Lollapalooza 2015 Day Three: Florence and the Machine and more review
Turner, a founding member of Wishbone Ash, recently lost a court case over the rights to use the band name. He can however perform and record Wishbone Ash material to his liking, and thats what he does here.
Read the full Martin Turner and Friends - The Garden Party: A Celebration of Wishbone Ash Music review
Saturdays edition of Lollapalooza was another perfect summer day with a mixture of sleepy and stupendous sets. The most fierce set of the day came from a Lollapalooza veteran, Metallica.
Read the full Lollapalooza 2015: Day Two - Metallica, Brand New And More review
What started as an alternative music fest has turned into one of the premier music festivals in the United States. While the spirit of alternative is alive within the festival, its expanded and has few musical boundaries.
Read the full Lollapalooza 2015: Day One - Paul McCartney- Gary Clarke Jr.- More review
Reviews and Features For July 2015
You can say it in French (musique magnifique) or in English (beautiful music) or in any language you wish but theres no disputing it; this years Quebec City Summer Festival was overflowing with great music.
Read the full Musique Magnifique! The Quebec City Summer Festival, Part 2 review
Jouni Jopo Rantanen knows how to growl. This sampler does exactly what its supposed to: show what the band is all about and give just enough of it to leave the listener wanting more.
Read the full ChILL - Artificially Alive review
Inside the friendly confines of the gorgeous Thalia Hall, Michael Franti and Spearhead matched U2 and the Rolling Stones song-for-song with a bristling catalog that confronts and comforts the listener.
Read the full Michael Franti and Spearhead: Once a Day Tour review
With the incredible success of such bands as The Killers and Imagine Dragons, Las Vegas music community is just as popular as New York, LA and Nashville when it comes to newly discovered talent.
Read the full Up and Coming: Avalon Landing review
What would you suppose would be the first decree of First Decree, the four-piece alt-metal band out of Cheyenne, Wyoming? The band has stated that their ultimate goal is to have their music inspire and encourage as many people as possible.
Read the full First Decree review
You know the party is something special when Mick and Keith show up. That was the case this year at the Quebec City Summer Festival, where the Rolling Stones played the final date of their Zip Code Tour
Read the full Musique Magnifique! The Quebec City Summer Festival, Part 1 review
Morley spoke with Beauvoir-Free's Micki Free recently about their new album American Trash. Sixty minutes seemed to vanish in seconds as he regaled Morley with great stories, punctuated with lots of laughs.
Read the full Beauvoir-Free's Micki Free MorleyView
This week marks two milestones for Guns N Roses acclaimed debut album Appetite For Destruction. The effort was released 28 years ago this week and also topped the U.S. album chart almost exactly one year from release.
Read the full Guns N' Roses - Appetite For Destruction review
In this installment of The Blues Kevin Wierzbicki tells us about news blues releases including Bo & the Bluesdrivers self title release, Arthur James Me, Myself & I and David Kings Ruirteach Blues.
Read the full Bo & the Bluesdrivers- Arthur James- David King review
The mixture of hard rocking instrumentation and soulful harmonized backing vocals is truly a thing of beauty. If musicians with their banks of computers and ditsy divas are leaving you cold, Delta Deep is nearly certain to warm our soul.
Read the full Delta Deep - Delta Deep review
Not too much to gripe about when it comes down to the meat and potatoes of Apex Predator - Easy Meat, as the Napalm Death enterprise once more proves itself satisfactory.
Read the full Napalm Death's Apex Predator - Easy Meat review
Kilminster played on Roger Waters The Wall Live and The Dark Side of the Moon Live tours, has featured in Keith Emersons band and also played alongside luminaries like Carl Palmer, Geoff Downes and John Wetton.
Read the full Dave Kilminster - ...And The Truth Will Set You Free... review
You have to be a bit of a metal scholar to know this but the original vocalist for Judas Priest was Al Atkins, who also gave the band he formed with K.K. Downing its name.
Read the full Atkins May Project - Anthology review
Fall Out Boy returned to Chicago like reigning champions and their ardent fans accepted them with open arms this past weekend on the Boys of Zummer tour which also features sets from Wiz Khalifa, Hoodie Allen, and DJ Drama.
Read the full Fall Out Boy: Boys of Zummer Tour review
Live at the Final Frontier nails the requisites for a live recording to excel. The mix brings enough crunch to the guitars to give off the traditional Iron Savior bite without shoving the rhythm section out of the picture.
Read the full Iron Savior - Live at the Final Frontier review
The phrase Its a whole new ball game gets bandied around quite a bit. But when it comes to the career of pop singer December Rose, the saying applies literally and figuratively.
Read the full December Rose review
Matt Hensch recently sat down with Garry Jennings to discuss the reissue of Cathedrals In Memoriam. They also discussed Lucifers debut album, the status of Septic Tank, the progress on a new Death Penalty album and more.
Read the full Garry Jennings (ex-Cathedral, Death Penalty, Lucifer) Interview
This provocatively-named German/English 70s band never got a big payday in the States but they did earn cult status and to this day crate diggers hunt for vinyl copies of the bands long out-of-print records.
Read the full Lucifer's Friend - Awakening review
Annika, Fiona, Petra and Kathryn von Grey certainly dont suffer from panophobia --- the fear of everything --- in fact theyre quite fearless here as they expand their sound considerably.
Read the full von Grey - Panophobia review
If ye be sailing the pleasant waters of Banderas Bay off the coast of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and ye spy the galleon Marigalante approaching, ye better be knowing that she's full of pirates!
Read the full Avast Mateys! There Be Pirates In Puerto Vallarta! Road Trip article
There have been very few records in recent memory that have had the staying power of American Trash by Beauvoir-Free. Morley spoke to Jean Beauvoir recently to talk about the album and his renewed partnership with Micki Free.
Read the full Beauvoir-Free's Jean Beauvoir MorleyView
This British prog band is not exactly a household name in the US, but they should be. Now in their 25th year of existence, the band plays old-school prog as was popular in the early days of FM radio.
Read the full Landmarq - Roadskill: Live in the Netherlands review
There is plenty to admire in how the group operates while diving headlong into the chaos which follows the subgenre ruled by Napalm Death and others, but the experimental elements are a wonderful touch.
Read the full Antigama - The Insolent review
Time for The Album Of The Week. This one goes out to all of you Maynard James Keenan or Tool fans out there. Mer de Noms (French for sea of names) is the debut album A Perfect Circle.
Read the full A Perfect Circle's Mer de Noms review
Reviews and Features For June 2015
The lead guitarist for classic rockers Journey steps out here for this 2-CD set containing 27 instrumental tracks. Fusion lovers and guitar heads should pick this one up right away.
Read the full Neal Schon - Vortex review
Morello singer Malcolm Sir Mal Cross hits the ears like sweet cotton candy, a silky treat delivered in falsetto that reminds a bit of Marvin Gaye. Bright and sunny like a Saturday afternoon, The Duellists is happiness-on-a-disc, a pop masterpiece.
Read the full Morello vs Masaru Mitsu - The Duellists review
In this edition of Rock Pile Kevin Wierzbicki tells us about the new rock releases: Filligars Keepsakes of the Interior, The Breton Sounds Dont Be Afraid of Rock & Roll Volume 1 and Bonson Berners Reflection.
Read the full Filligar- The Breton Sound- Bonson Berner review
Necrowretchs take on the death/black metal scheme is superior to others attempting the union due in part to the bands ability to take the evil and the filth of both sounds and make them seemingly one and the same.
Read the full Necrowretch - With Serpents Scourge review
Many who would name Steve Howe as one of the top guitarists of all time likely would do so based mostly on his work with Yes. Howe too played in Asia, GTR and more but hes also put out a slew of solo albums since 1975.
Read the full Steve Howe - Anthology review
Album titles can be cutesy or cryptic, nonsensical or meaningful, and it is the latter category into which Renovate, the new EP from Philadelphia-based rock band Everlit falls.
Read the full Everlit - Renovate review
The overall consensus of the tour during its first month is the staging is not just stunning, but Earth-shattering. However, many fans who bought tickets to multiple shows (including this writer) feel a bit disillusioned.
Read the full U2's Set List Conundrum review
After reuniting for a few shows several years ago, Coal Chamber completed the process by just releasing an excellent new record, Rivals. Morley speaks With Dez Fafara to learn all about it.
Read the full Coal Chamber's Dez Fafara MorleyView
Time for the Album Of The Week: U2s The Joshua Tree. This weeks choice is an easy one. The numbers on this album and this band are through the stratosphere.
Read the full U2's The Joshua Tree review
Rush in 2015 is a band at the peak of their powers. On tour in celebration of their fortieth anniversary (R40), they flat-out delivered the goods like a band that had so much on the line.
Read the full Rush: Beyond the Arena Stage review
Most visitors to Wales are going to begin their adventure in Cardiff. And since there's so much to do in Cardiff, some might spend all of their time there. But there's also plenty to do outside of town and in Mid Wales.
Read the full Castles, Coal and a Cuppa: Big Fun in Mid Wales! Road Trip article
The Marquis of Rock 'N Roll, Michael Des Barres is following up his superb solo return to rock 'n roll, 2012's 'Carnaby Street' with a record that matches it and actually does it one better, 'The Key to the Universe'
Read the full Michael Des Barres MorleyView
The collateral damage of war is a recurring theme throughout The Revolution but listeners dont need to hear the message to enjoy the album though- Moriarty has a wonderful voice and has crafted here an excellent venue to showcase it. (4 stars)
Read the full Fiach Moriarty - The Revolution review
As tremendous as it is, Gods of War - At War was built to come out triumphant and epic, but not plumped up to its eyeballs in unnecessary additives, which, these days, is a rare feat. 5 Stars! (5 stars)
Read the full Macabre Omen - Gods of War - At War review
The courteous and honorable men of Kamelot showed the world they still had more than enough in the tank to continue pounding out top-tier opuses of power metal on Silverthorn, which was an astounding achievement. (4 stars)
Read the full Kamelot - Haven review
The four-song Black Flesh Redemption EP does the usual Demonical shindig, delivering a summary of the bands style in just a hair over seventeen minutes. (3.5 stars)
Read the full Demonical - Black Flesh Redemption review
This was the very first record I ever owned. I was going through a bunch of my dads records when I was 5 years old and I will never forget coming across this album and thinking this could be something interesting to hear.
Read the full Johnny Cash's Live At San Quentin review
Everlits first single Break Away, a melodic rocker appropriately-enough about getting out from underneath something that isnt working, has recently been released and is making big waves for the band at radio
Read the full Everlit review
If you can tell Secondborn is from Lafayette, LA, youre better at noticing Southern accents than most. Symbols is a tight, rocking EP that will immediately appeal to anybody thats attended a Warped Tour. (2 stars)
Read the full Secondborn - Symbols review
To celebrate the release of Cameron Crowes new film we revisit this feature from 2012 where Tony K revealed his list of Greatest Hits of songs used in the famed filmmakers movies.
Read the full Music and Movies: Cameron Crowe's 'Greatest Hits' review
Reviews and Features For May 2015
Imagine what a punk-leaning garage rock outfit fronted by Keith Richards might sound like and youve got a pretty good idea of the cool music to be found on Ballsier. (3.5 stars)
Read the full The Grannies - Ballsier review
This set, filmed last year on the last day of Benatars 35th Anniversary Tour is more or less a performance of greatest hits culled from the first half dozen or so albums. This live retrospective is presented in triple disc form as 2-CDs + the DVD. (4 stars)
Read the full Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo - 35th Anniversary Tour review
Country music fans first got to know Stump when she appeared on season two of The Voice, a venue that she fully took advantage of to launch a career that now, only a few short years later, is really hitting pay dirt. (4 stars)
Read the full Adley Stump - Like This (Deluxe) review
The song Bloodstains by none other than Agent Orange was an anthem, if you will, for many young original punks from Orange County, Ca in the early 1980s.
Read the full Agent Orange's Living in Darkness review
Dont let this wonderful surprise, no doubt one of 2015s finest records, slip away under the tidal wave of vapid metal albums pretending to have a tenth of the quality of Vessel. (5 stars)
Read the full Trial - Vessel review
Riddle of Steel is something extraordinary. Sons of Crom, this Swedish duo taking after the gods of epic heavy metal, is to this current age of metal what The Aeneid is to Fifty Shades of Grey. (5 stars)
Read the full Sons of Crom - Riddle of Steel review
Morgoth joins countless death metal bands that were once dead but now walk the earth as revenants. The least I can say about Ungod is that it does not suck. (4.5 stars)
Read the full Morgoth - Ungod review
This was The Polices most successful album by far, but there is no doubt it led to this bands break up. By the time this album was half way done, all three members could never be seen in the studio together at one time
Read the full The Police's Synchronicity review
Morley first heard September Mourning a few weeks ago via their excellent new single "Children of Fate" and since then he hasn't been able to get them out of his head. He spoke with to September to find out more about this fascinating band and what they're all about.
Read the full September Mourning MorleyView
For this installment of Get the Blues, Kevin Wierzbicki tells us about the latest blues releases including Hornbuckles Virtue & Vice and Howard and the White Boys Rosas Lounge.
Read the full Hornbuckle- Howard and the White Boys review
Halford impresses on this inventive set that features a bluesy, hopped-up rocking slice of Americana that takes roots music way back by incorporating Native American rhythms, and the organ-driven, guitar buzzing.
Read the full Jeffrey Halford & the Healers' Rainmaker review
Reboot is one of those records that really makes you want to see the band perform live (the girls are Warped Tour vets but not playing this year) and its advisable not to miss them if they come through your town.
Read the full Go Betty Go's Reboot review
A few years ago when country singer Adley Stump launched her career by appearing on The Voice she had the notion that she would be mistaken for just another ditzy blond.
Read the full Adley Stump review
In this installment of Passport Kevin Wierzbicki travels the world of music to learn about Buena Vista Social Clubs Lost and Found, Angelique Kidjos Sings, Mbongwana Stars From Kinshasa, and Seckou Keitas 22 Strings.
Read the full Buena Vista Social Club- Angelique Kidjo- Mbongwana Star- More review
Unlike the similarly aligned White Stripes who introduced themselves as brother and sister in their early days, Satellite Skys Pete and Kim Kicks really are from the same gene pool. (3.5 stars)
Read the full Satellite Sky - Magnetize review
While not exactly a household name around the country, Feisty Piranhas were very big on the rock/punk scene in SoCal and they enjoyed a long run until the death of front man Peter Alexander Feisty Lust III in early 2014. (3.5 stars)
Read the full Feisty Piranhas' Live in Lasers review
Break The Cycle is Stainds most successful album to date, and was the album that broke them into the mainstream. It was a huge success for the band, as it spent 3 weeks at number 1 position in the U.S. album charts
Read the full Staind's Break The Cycle review
The act [debut] is the name given to Gareth Thomas music, and Postcards From Berlin is an enjoyable throwback to electronic music from the 80s and 90s, particularly that of Depeche Mode and Nine Inch Nails. (2 stars)
Read the full [debut] - Postcards From Berlin review
Staring At The Suns Break The Silence begins with a propulsive song titled Trust No One. With a powerful groove and layered vocal, the track sounds a little like Bad Religion at its poppiest. (3 stars)
Read the full Staring At the Sun - Break The Silence review
After you listen to a track like The Devil is in the Desert, off Small Leaks Sink Ships Face Yourself, and Remove Your Sandals, you can be pretty sure this act isnt out to conquer top-40 radio. (3 stars)
Read the full Small Leaks Sink Ships - Face Yourself, and Remove Your Sandals review
You can hear a little Ron Sexsmith in Steve Benjamins vocal style. This is quiet, thoughtful music that can help wake you up gently in the morning, or calm you down toward the end of a busy day. (4 stars)
Read the full Steve Benjamins - Sightlines review
Nassuet is as influenced by by Gothic rock as he is inspired by more folk-ish artists like Nike Drake. However, when youre listening to these songs, he truly sounds like someone that may have originally cut his teeth on glam metal (3 stars)
Read the full Nic Nassuet - Eleutherios review
Matthew Santos has one of those voices you cant forget once youve heard it. Much like Jeff Buckley, it has a soaring quality that makes you wonder if it has any limitations at all. His album Into The Further, is a fine showcase for what this man (and his voice) can do. (4 stars)
Read the full Matthew Santos - Into The Further review
Rock Masters Band is a glam-y hard rock band from Helsinki, Finland, and you can hear the Finish in Sami Haxu Hakalas voice when he sings these two new songs. Theres just something cool about that.
Read the full Rock Masters Band - Hit The City/Diamonds double single review
CalatrilloZ is a symphonic rock band from London, and the symphonic side of its character is especially obvious during Lords of Misery, where the group gets all grandiose, like early Queen. The rock is hard, but the vocals are layered and operatic. (2 stars)
Read the full CalatrilloZ - Psalms of Zahyin review
Winchester Revival sounds like a relatively straight forward rock band - at least until we get to the song Diligence, off its Burdens Landing album. This track is odd in that it has a bit of a dance groove to it. (3 stars)
Read the full Winchester Revival - Burden's Landing review
You really dont hear many concept albums these days. However The Vigilance Committees Exit A Hero is just such an animal. Its described as the story of the first vigilance committees of San Francisco in the mid-1800s. (3 stars)
Read the full The Vigilance Committee - Exit A Hero review
Bitters Kisss obvious big selling point is vocalist Chloe Baker, who sings in a little girls voice, yet obviously retains a worldly-wise perspective on life. Chloe sings and plays guitar and piano, while Michael Baker plays guitar, piano, bass and drums. (4 stars)
Read the full Bitter's Kiss - Self-titled review
This music is rough n tumble rock & roll, notable for its soulful playing and rough-around-the-edges vocals. Its also is an album for those that are sick and tired of slick, soulless rock. Dig it, man! (3 stars)
Read the full Broken Guru - Bent Up Halo review
This act loves a lot of different musics - maybe too many. But if you have restless listening ears, this project ought to keep you busy for a while. (3 stars)
Read the full The Great Game - Self-Titled review
Its rare you find a collection of music with such an honest title. Sure, The Smiths, The Cure, Pink Floyd, Nick Drake and so many others sing about the same things, yet Vince Grant comes right out and says it: My Depression is Always Trying to Kill Me. (3 stars)
Read the full Vince Grant - My Depression Is Always Trying To Kill Me review