Billboard Top 25 Hard Rock Albums – 12/17/16

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Billboard Hard Rock Albums Chart for the week ending 12/17/16.  Top 25 albums ranked by sales data and compiled by Nielsen SoundScan.

THIS WEEK’S TOP 25:

      1. METALLICA – Hardwired…To Self-Destruct
      2. TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA – The Ghosts Of Christmas Eve
      3. AVENGED SEVENFOLD – The Stage
      4. SKILLET– Unleashed
      5. ICON FOR HIRE – You Can’t Kill Us
      6. KORN – The Serenity Of Suffering
      7. DISTURBED – Immortalized
      8. SIXX: A.M. – Prayers For The Blessed, Vol. 2
      9. BEASTO BLANCO – Beasto Blanco
      10. HIGHLY SUSPECT – The Boy Who Died Wolf
      11. FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH -Got Your Six
      12. I PREVAIL – Lifelines
      13. THE PRETTY RECKLESS – Who You Selling For
      14. DISTURBED – Disturbed: Live At Red Rocks
      15. LAMB OF GOD – The Duke (EP)
      16. VOLBEAT – Seal The Deal & Let’s Boogie
      17. SHINEDOWN – Threat To Survival
      18. A DAY TO REMEMBER – Bad Vibrations
      19. TESTAMENT – Brotherhood Of The Snake
      20. ALTER BRIDGE – The Last Hero
      21. JIMI HENDRIX – Machine Gun: The Fillmore East: First Show 12/31/1969
      22. SIXX: A.M. – Prayers For The Damned, Vol. 1
      23. CHEVELLE – The North Corridor
      24. ALICE IN CHAINS – Live: Facelift (EP)
      25. MEGADETH – Dystopia

RELATED ARTICLES:

Top 135 Hard Rock Songs of 2015

Billboard Top 50 Hard Rock Albums of 2015

Billboard Top 50 Hard Rock Albums of 2014

Billboard Top 50 Hard Rock Albums of 2013

Billboard Hard Rock Albums Archives

HRD Radio Report – Week Ending 12/3/16

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HRD RADIO REPORT 

The HRD Radio Report showcases the weekly Active Rock Mediabase Charts (compiled by AllAccess.com), and appears every Tuesday on HardRockDaddy.com.  The HRD Radio Report digs deeper into the weekly Active Rock charts, providing commentary, reviews, recommendations and predictions.  It also features opinion pieces on chart action and the music business in general.

Many of the artists featured on the Active Rock charts have already been reviewed on HardRockDaddy.com.

2016 Active Rock Radio / Octane Quarterly Report: Q3

The following is the Active Rock Mediabase Chart for the week ending 12/3/16.  All exclusive HRD content is featured below the chart:

CHART CHART ARTIST SONG TITLE RADIO
POSITION POSITION SPINS
THIS WEEK LAST WEEK THIS WEEK
1 1 HIGHLY SUSPECT “My Name Is Human” 2175
2 3 GHOST “Square Hammer” 1748
3 4 VOLBEAT “Seal The Deal” 1678
4 2 DISTURBED “Open Your Eyes” 1659
5 5 FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH “I Apologize” 1596
6 6 AVENGED SEVENFOLD “The Stage” 1497
7 8 METALLICA “Atlas,Rise!” 1308
8 10 GREEN DAY “Still Breathing” 1136
9 9 PRETTY RECKLESS “Take Me Down” 1069
10 12 RED SUN RISING “Amnesia” 1009
11 13 SHINEDOWN “How Did You Love” 945
12 11 THRICE “Black Honey” 930
13 15 DINOSAUR PILE-UP “11:11” 745
14 19 A DAY TO REMEMBER “Naivety” 703
15 16 KINGS OF LEON “Waste A Moment” 700
16 18 CHEVELLE “Door To Door Cannibals” 686
17 14 METALLICA “Moth Into Flame” 663
18 21 BEARTOOTH “Hated” 641
19 22 BREAKING BENJAMIN “Never Again” 638
20 20 GREEN DAY “Bang Bang” 624
21 17 ALTER BRIDGE “Show Me A Leader” 609
22 24 IN FLAMES “The Truth” 518
23 25 KORN “Take Me” 510
24 23 RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS “Go Robot” 504
25 29 SIXX:A.M. “We Will Not Go Quietly” 423
26 28 POP EVIL “If Only For Now” 417
27 27 GEMINI SYNDROME “Remember We Die” 408
28 26 KORN “Rotting In Vain” 405
29 32 STARSET “Monster” 379
30 31 DEVOUR THE DAY “The Bottom” 322
31 36 THROUGH FIRE “Breathe” 246
32 34 ONE LESS REASON “Break Me” 246
33 33 KALEO “Way Down We Go” 243
34 30 METALLICA “Hardwired” 243
35 35 SICK PUPPIES “Where Do I Begin” 229
36 38 AVATAR “Night Never” 221
37 37 ADELITAS WAY “Ready For War (Pray For Peace) 201
38 41 BLINK-182 “She’s Out Of Her Mind” 189
39 39 ART OF ANARCHY “The Madness” 177
40 42 AMITY AFFLICTION “All Messed Up” 167
41 43 GOODBYE JUNE “Oh No” 158
42 46 BLEEKER “Highway” 150
43 55 FROM ASHES TO NEW “Breaking Now” 139
44 47 JUDAH & THE LION “Take It All Back” 137
45 45 SYLAR “Dark Daze” 137
46 44 3 DOORS DOWN “The Broken” 120
47 49 LAMB OF GOD “The Duke” 117
48 48 NONPOINT “Divided..Conquer Them” 107
49 67 THREE DAYS GRACE “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore” 98
50 56 DOROTHY “Dark Nights” 95

 

PUBLISHER’S PICK OF THE WEEK (By Adam Waldman)

SIXX: A.M. – “We Will Not Go Quietly”

With Motley Crue’s career officially in the rear view mirror, Nikki Sixx hasn’t missed a beat in returning to the top of the hard rock genre with Sixx:A.M.  What was once a side project has now joined the upper echelon of rock acts today.  Following the path of Five Finger Death Punch and Stone Sour in recent years, Sixx:A.M. is about to release Prayers For The Damned, Vol. 2 (the second studio album of the year from the band).  “We Will Not Go Quietly” – the first single off of the new album – is another powerful anthem from the band that has established a signature sound that differentiates them from all others.  This defiant, us-against-the-world track has gotten solid spins so far, but by all rights, it should be battling for #1 with other established artists.
 

 

 

PUBLISHER’S PREDICTIONS (by Adam Waldman)

Unless Highly Suspect’s “My Name Is Human” starts to drop, it’s likely to ride out the rest of 2016 as the #1 song on the chart. Ghost’s “Square Hammer” has jumped up to #2, but it would need to bolster its spins to reach #1 (even if Highly Suspect’s spins flatten).  Metallica, Avenged Sevenfold and Green Day all have the potential to battle for #1 in January, but it will be more of the traditional methodical climb than the blistering pace that was happening recently.
 

 

HRD SPIN CONTROL (by Adam Waldman and Jon Loveless)

Each week, we will share the songs that we think should be added to rotations, alongside the songs that we feel should be dropped from rotations, either because they are a bad fit for the format, or because they have run their course and it’s time for a new single from the artist.

SPIN IT…

SEASONS AFTER“Fighter”

FLAW“Fatal Fall”

ART OF DYING“Torn Down”

BADFLOWER “Animal”

MESSAGE FROM SYLVIA“Heart Of War”

BLACKLITE DISTRICT“Broken Souls”

DON BROCO“Money Power Fame”

AFI“White Offering”

 

DROP IT…

Dinosaur Pile-Up “11:11”

Kings Of Leon“Waste A Moment”

Judah & The Lion“Take It All Back”

Blink 182“She’s Out Of Her Mind”

Korn“Rotting In Vain”

Pretty Reckless “Take Me Down”

Disturbed “Open Your Eyes”

Metallica“Hardwired”

 

 

THE BREAKDOWN by Jon Loveless

KING OF THE HILL

For the third straight week, Highly Suspect enjoys the #1 spot on the Mediabase Active Rock Airplay chart.  Hardly any upward movement for the most-played songs last week, but Ghost and Volbeat rise one spot each (to #2 & #3 respectively) as Disturbed falls back.  Although they are the closest challengers, they are also 20% – 25% behind the leader in spins.
 

 

NOTABLE CHART MOVEMENT

Red Sun Rising breaks into the Top 10 with their latest single…

Breaking Benjamin is new to the Top 20 this week, and Beartooth inches upward to regain their Top 20 status as well…

Scarcely any airplay change at all does not prevent both Starset and Devour The Day from reaching the Top 30…

Blink-182 and Amity Affliction similarly debut in the Top 40 this week…

From Ashes To New has the strongest debut of three songs cracking the Top 50 this week, joined by Three Days Grace and Dorothy.
 

 

THREE UP & THREE DOWN

RISING

Metallica“Atlas, Rise”

Red Sun Rising“Amnesia”

Starset“Monster”

 

FALLING

Disturbed – “Open Your Eyes”

Metallica “Hardwired”

Metallica – “Moth Into Flame”
 

 

TRENDS AND OBSERVATIONS

Quite a bit of movement this week despite the absence of any particularly gaudy changes in spin counts.   It looks as though the holiday slowdown may officially be upon us, with significant change likely to be less common as we head into the final weeks of 2016.

 

WRAP-UP

That’s all for this week.  Tune in to HardRockDaddy.com every Tuesday for the HRD Radio Report. \m/

Music Discovery Monday – 12/5/16

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Music Discovery Monday – 12/5/16

Music Discovery Monday shines a light on artists that are not getting the radio attention that they deserve, while also showcasing new singles by established bands that are likely to get airplay in the future.

In addition to appearing on the embedded YouTube playlist below, all songs featured on Music Discovery Monday can be listened to individually by clicking on the hyper-linked song titles above each review.
 

 

 

 ADAM WALDMAN – (Publisher, Hard Rock Daddy)

THE GREG BILLINGS BAND (f. BRIAN JOHNSON) – “Old Friends Don’t Come Easy”

When Brian Johnson’s hearing problems forced him to suddenly leave AC/DC, fans were hoping that someday he would return to the stage (or at the very least, the studio).  It’s safe to say that most people didn’t expect his return to happen as a guest vocalist (on a fitting song) with The Greg Billings Band.

You might be wondering how the band was able to land Johnson for a guest vocal spot.  I must admit, I wondered the same thing, having not heard of them until recently.  It turns out that Billings has a history that dates back to the ‘80s with a band called Romeo (which was signed to Epic Records).  The band – who gained popularity in Florida – changed their name to Stranger before the album was released.

Stranger, with their “hook-laden songs” and “electrifying stage show,” became well-known in the southeast.  Although the band released a number of albums through the years, most were independent.  Fast forward to 2003…two original members of Stranger – Billings (vocals) and Tom King (bass) – continue the phenomenon that began in the ‘80s.

“Old Friends Don’t Come Easy” – from the band’s upcoming album Boom Boom All Night! – captured my attention because of the reemergence of Johnson, but the band more than stands on its own with its brand of feel-good, gin-soaked, honky-tonk rock and roll.

The smooth vocals of Billings are the Johnnie Walker Blue to Johnson’s edgy shot of Jack Daniels.  Together, this vocal duo makes for an interesting blend that works perfectly together.

It just so happens that the lyrics of the song paint a picture of a nostalgic bar memories, but even if they didn’t, listening to “Old Friends Don’t Come Easy” makes you want to hit the bar for happy hour.  Bluesy guitar, great vocals and rollicking piano…what more can you ask for?

 

 

ICE ON MERCURY – “Blind Leading The Lifeless”

Hailing from South Australia, Ice On Mercury hits you with a rare blend of aggression and infectious melody from the first note on “Blind Leading The Lifeless.”  The band cites Anthrax as one of their influences, which is something that you definitely hear in the song, along with shades of fellow Down Under rockers Parkway Drive, Bullet For My Valentine and Hellyeah.  Like Anthrax, who excels at combining blood-pumping, in-your-face metal with humor, Ice On Mercury can rock out with the best of them without taking themselves too seriously.  After you listening to this killer track, I checked out the band’s bio on Facebook and learned that they like “long walks on the beach, romantic candle-lit dinners and rocking out with ye Ol’ Cock Out!!!”  Make sure to check these guys out!
 

 

 

ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

KREATOR – “Gods of Violence”

One of the founding fathers of death metal are back with their new single, “Gods of Violence” (the title track from their new album).  Having been a fan since the late ‘80s, it’s great to this band still writing new material.  The new single is not much of a departure from their earlier work, just updated to sound a little more modern.  Kreator still has fierce aggression and nihilistic lyrics, but the songwriting has become more melodic (and even anthemic in its choruses).  Their 14th album looks to be a strong one.

 

VADER – “Prayer to the God of War”

The death metal giants from Poland are back with their 13th studio album, The Empire.  The album is heavy – like skull-crushing heavy – and full of double-bass drumming, growls and old school, thrashing guitar riffs.  Vader is one of the rare bands in the genre to enjoy longevity and still be writing great new music.  Since 1983, this band has brutally impressed their fans with their brand of speed/thrash/death metal in the same vein as Slayer.  This album does not disappoint.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

DEFIANT – “Time Isn’t Healing”

Ukrainian power metal band Defiant has opted for English-lyrics-only on their sophomore album, making some high quality music instantly more accessible to the metal world. This is the title track, which conveys an idea of their melodic approach with some speed and progressive influences.

 

FEANOR – “We Are Heavy Metal”

Feanor is another power metal band that has just elected to release their first English-lyrics-only album this year.  After a five-year stretch, this is the Argentinian band’s third album. Check them out rocking hard (but melodically) here on the title song, and listen for a guest appearance on vocals from Tony Martin (ex-Black Sabbath) on the excellent “Crying Games.”

 

SUBMISSIONS

To be considered for Music Discovery Monday, please e-mail a link to the song being submitted on YouTube and an artist bio to – submissions@MusicDiscoveryMonday.com

Octane Big ‘Uns Countdown – Week of 12-3-16

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Octane Big ‘Uns Countdown for the week of 12-3-16.

12-3-16 Big ‘Uns Countdown playlist can also be found on www.HardRockDaddyNetwork.com (the HRD YouTube channel), in addition to archived playlists dating back to 2013.  Links to reviews of songs from the countdown are featured at the bottom of the page.

#15 – “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore” – THREE DAYS GRACE

#14 –  “Take Me” – KORN

#13 –  “The Stage” – AVENGED SEVENFOLD

#12 –  “The Bottom” – DEVOUR THE DAY

#11 –   “Breathe” – THROUGH FIRE

#10 –   “Push” – THOUSAND FOOT KRUTCH

# 9 –    “Never Again” – BREAKING BENJAMIN

# 8 –    “Ready For War (Pray For Peace)” – ADELITA’S WAY

# 7 –    “Square Hammer” – GHOST

# 6 –    “Monster” – STARSET

# 5 –    “My Name Is Human” – HIGHLY SUSPECT

# 4 –    “Atlas,Rise!” – METALLICA

# 3 –    “Stuck in Your Head” – I PREVAIL

# 2 –    “Remember We Die” – GEMINI SYNDRROME

# 1 –     “How Did You Love” – SHINEDOWN

RELATED ARTICLES:

2016 Active Rock Radio / Octane Quarterly Report: Q3

2016 Active Rock Radio / Octane Quarterly Report: Q2

2016 Active Rock Radio / Octane Quarterly Report: Q1

Top 30 Octane Big ‘Uns Countdown Songs of 2015

Top 135 Hard Rock Songs of 2015

Top 30 Octane Big ‘Uns Countdown Songs of 2014

Top 100 Hard Rock Songs of 2014

Top 30 Octane Big ‘Uns Countdown Songs of 2013

Octane Big ‘Uns Countdown Archives

Inferno of Rock Report – DECEMBER 2016

Inferno Of Rock ReportBy Ian Liberman

IN MEMORIAM

LEONARD COHEN (9/21/34 – 11/7/16)

Leonard Cohen, born in 1934 in Montreal, was one of Canada`s most prolific and famous artists. He became world famous as a poet, author, songwriter and vocalist. Cohen transcended countless genres of music from pop to country to folk, in addition to earning the respect of hard rockers.

Cohen participated and performed at the Isle of Wright concert, meeting such luminary artists as Jimi Hendrix and the Doors.   His first album, Songs of Leonard Cohen, sold moderately well for an initial pressing.  Some of his popular tunes include “Hallelujah,” “So Long, Marianne,” “Bird on the Wire,” “First We Take Manhattan” and “Suzanne.”

Paul Stanley of KISS called Cohen…“ A poet, songwriter and rogue till the end” on Twitter.

Rage Against The Machine’s Tom Morello tweeted…“L. Cohen was an angel of cultural redemption.  From his Tower of Song, he delivered a beautiful sermon of dark romance and quiet resistance.”

Theory of A Deadman has transformed and fashioned an immensely creative version of “Hallelujah” that is shooting up the active rock charts in Canada.

Cohen’s last tune, “You Want it Darker,” conjured up his roots of Orthodoxy in the Jewish Religion.

RIP Leonard.
 

LEON RUSSELL (9/2/42 – 11/13/16)

Leon Russell died in Nashville on November 13th at the age of 74.  I had a chance to witness Russell`s brilliance one night when he was on stage with Joe Cocker.  He sat behind his grand piano playing with dexterity and resourceful manipulation.  I remember his raspy vocals, the way that he joked with audience, and his songs permeating the concert hall.  Russell had a habit of adlibbing during his concerts, and the audience appreciated him taking the time to interject these personal anecdotal forms of whimsical contributions.

Russell worked with The Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton (both of whom influenced his music, as did Jimi Hendrix).

After learning of Russell’s passing, Charlie Daniels tweeted…“Just got word that Leon Russell has passed away.  Rest in peace Leon.  You left a lot of great music behind you.”

Who can forget albums like Carney, Leon Russell and the Shelter People and Leon Live?

Before he died, Russell was captured on film giving a behind-the-scenes look at his preparation before concerts, and the post-performance breakdown by musicians and the staff.  The film is called A Poem is a Naked Person.  It will be coming to a streaming station near you soon.

RIP Leon.  You will be missed.
 

 

THE GOLDEN GOD AWARDS RETURN TO AMERICA…(SORT OF)

I was quite upset last year when the Golden God Awards took place in Europe.  Through social media, they were having fabulous parties and distributing awards to all of my favorite rock bands.  Meanwhile, back in North America, rock and metal fans were left out in the cold.

Traditionally, the Golden God Awards were broadcast by Epiphone and Revolver Magazine, providing an alternative to the Grammys and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (both of which tend to shun hard rock and metal).

2016 has been a year of tremendous loss in the rock world, but the silver lining is the return of the Golden God Awards to North America.  Well, sort of…

The awards have been rebranded as the “Epiphone Revolver Music Awards.”  The event is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, December 13th, at Webster Hall in New York City.  The RMAs will be live streamed by Twitch.TV, and hosted by metal legend / Megadeth frontman, Dave Mustaine, who will co-host with SiriusXM’s Jose Mangin.

Click here to see this year’s nominees.
 

 

POLITICAL ROCKERS IN A “POST-TRUTH” WORLD

“Post-Truth” is a term that has become very popular in North America these days as a result of fake articles that permeated social media during this year’s election.

The Oxford Dictionary defines Post-Truth as…

“relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal beliefs.”

During this year’s American Music Awards, we learned why rock categories at awards shows are shown off camera.  The industry fears their unpredictability.  Unlike pop stars, who for the most part, do not write their own music or exhibit strong opinions about the world at large, rockers like Green Day use their status to deliver a real message in a “post-truth” world.

During their performance at the AMAs, Green Day launched into a musical attack on Donald Trump, and his connections to the “alt right.”  It takes artists like Green Day, who craft their own message and have control over their careers, to step up and have their voices be heard in a “post-truth” world.
 

 

 

   INFERNO OF ROCK TRIVIA QUESTIONS:

If trivia is up your alley, make sure to check out the Inferno of Rock Trivia Card Game available on Amazon or worldwide from Rock From Hell.

 

DECEMBER 2016 TRIVIA QUESTIONS

Which band has been criticized for appearing on the X Factor TV Show in Australia?

 

The Vigilante Classical Music Orchestra in Belgium will do their first non-classical tour using metal rock tunes. Which band and tune will they use?

[a] Led Zeppelin – “Stairway to Heaven”

[b] Pink Floyd – “The Wall”

[c] Tool – “Stinkfist”

 

An award winning metal band has said that their 2017 release will have “the return of the deity.” Name the band…

 

 

NOVEMBER 2016 TRIVIA QUESTIONS

Which record company started the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame awards?  Atlantic Records

 

Which band has a female and male vocalist? A. Halestorm B. The Runaways C. White Stripes

 

Which band is using a puppet play for their new single and it has become a huge success on the Internet?  Avenged Sevenfold

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 12/1/16

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 12/1/16

Each Thursday, Hard Rock Music Time Machine takes a journey back in time to feature a variety of songs that date back as far as the ’70s, the ’80s (the glory days of hard rock), hidden gems of the ’90s and hard rock/metal songs of the new millennium (as recent as a few years ago).

Whenever possible, it will also contain interviews from featured artists discussing the inspiration and meaning behind their songs.   On the last Thursday of each month, we will be doing special themes that feature songs based on specific categories or years.

In addition to appearing on the embedded YouTube playlist below, all songs featured on Hard Rock Music Time Machine can be listened to individually by clicking on the hyper-linked song titles above each review.
 

 

 

 ADAM WALDMAN – (Publisher, Hard Rock Daddy)

GREEN DAY – “American Idiot” (2004)

Green Day has never shied away from sharing their political views, so it comes as no surprise that they chose to use their performance at the American Music Awards to deliver a message to the masses.  In this punk anthem, the band prophetically addresses the state of America today, and the media’s place in adding to the tension that is the worst in recent memory.

One of my bigger regrets is not going to see the Broadway production of American Idiot before it closed in 2011.  It wasn’t until I saw a documentary about the stage adaption of the band’s rock opera that I became interested in seeing it.  Fortunately, HBO has just given the green light to adapt American Idiot in film.  The timing couldn’t be better for this news.

Regardless of the political messaging, the fact remains that “American Idiot” is a Green Day classic because of the music.
 

 
RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE – “Killing In The Name” (1991)

In 1991, Rage Against The Machine made an immediate impact on the rock world with their self-titled debut album.  To this day, their lead single from the album – “Killing In The Name” – remains the embodiment of the band’s signature sound.

It’s not just the unbridled energy and angst of the song that made it so powerful.  The lyrics (while minimal) deliver a controversial message about some members of U.S. police forces also being members of the KKK.

“Killing In The Name” was released six months after the Los Angeles riots, which came on the heels of four white police officers being acquitted in the beating of Rodney King.

Racial tension has never really gone away in America.  Sometimes, it just doesn’t seem as overt.  Sadly, we are currently in a cycle where the KKK feels emboldened due to recent events.  A quarter century after its release, “Killing In The Name” is much more relevant than most would have probably imagined.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

DEMOLITION HAMMER – “Infectious Hospital Waste” (1990)

One cannot discuss ‘90s thrash metal without including Bronx, New York’s Demolition Hammer.  Growing up in New York, I’ve always thought these guys were one of the most underrated thrash metal bands (during a time when some of the other thrash bands became a little more mainstream).  “Infectious Hospital Waste,” from the band’s first full-length album, Tortured Existence, is brutal, fast, heavy and dark (all the qualities you look for in a good thrash metal song).  Only having released three albums, Demolition Hammer disbanded in 1994, but have recently reformed and are currently touring.  Needless to say, I will be there when they come to town.

 

GOTHIC SLAM – “Who Died and Made You God” (1989)

Another classic thrash metal band from the late ‘80s is New Jersey’s Gothic Slam.  I remember going to see these guys when I was in high school just for the mosh pits.  Their brand of thrash metal was oftentimes humorous and political (with an obvious influence of punk and hardcore).  Their album, Just a Face in the Crowd, was full of memorable heavy and fast thrash metal greats, including a Thin Lizzy cover of “Thunder & Lightning.”  Here’s to hoping that Gothic Slam gets back together again.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

QUEENSRYCHE – “The Killing Words” (1986)

I’m very excited to be catching Queensryche next week in New York City.  Some fans were deeply disappointed in 2012 by the departure of long-time frontman Geoff Tate, but Todd La Torre has proven to be a worthy successor.  La Torre and company continue to perform this breathtaking classic from the band’s 1986 sophomore album, Rage For Order.

 

ARMORED SAINT – “After Me, The Flood” (2000)

Sharing the bill with Queensryche next week will be Armored Saint.  They’ve disappeared and reappeared more than once over the years, but continue to put out powerful music and thrill live audiences.  They’d been gone from the scene for a few years before releasing 2000’s Revelation, and from it, this hard rocker.  Fortunately, vocalist Jon Bush managed to steal away from Anthrax, and bassist/producer Joey Vera from Fates Warning, to put together another killer album, complete with gravelly vocals and gritty guitar riffs.

Billboard Top 25 Hard Rock Albums – 12/10/16

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Billboard Hard Rock Albums Chart for the week ending 12/10/16.  Top 25 albums ranked by sales data and compiled by Nielsen SoundScan.

THIS WEEK’S TOP 25:

      1. METALLICA – Hardwired…To Self-Destruct
      2. HIGHLY SUSPECT – The Boy Who Died Wolf
      3. SIXX: A.M. – Prayers For The Blessed, Vol. 2
      4. AVENGED SEVENFOLD – The Stage
      5. TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA – The Ghosts Of Christmas Eve
      6. LAMB OF GOD – The Duke (EP)
      7. DISTURBED – Disturbed: Live At Red Rocks
      8. PROTEST THE HERO – Pacific Myth
      9. KORN – The Serenity Of Suffering
      10. SKILLET– Unleashed
      11. DISTURBED – Immortalized
      12. FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH -Got Your Six
      13. TESTAMENT – Brotherhood Of The Snake
      14. THE PRETTY RECKLESS – Who You Selling For
      15. IN FLAMES – Battles
      16. I PREVAIL – Lifelines
      17. ANIMALS AS LEADERS – The Madness Of Many
      18. SHINEDOWN – Threat To Survival
      19. VOLBEAT – Seal The Deal & Let’s Boogie
      20. A DAY TO REMEMBER – Bad Vibrations
      21. ALTER BRIDGE – The Last Hero
      22. SUPERJOINT – Caught Up In The Gears Of Application
      23. MEGADETH – Dystopia
      24. SIXX: A.M. – Prayers For The Damned, Vol. 1
      25. ION DISSONANCE – Cast The First Stone

RELATED ARTICLES:

Top 135 Hard Rock Songs of 2015

Billboard Top 50 Hard Rock Albums of 2015

Billboard Top 50 Hard Rock Albums of 2014

Billboard Top 50 Hard Rock Albums of 2013

Billboard Hard Rock Albums Archives

HRD Radio Report – Week Ending 11/26/16

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HRD RADIO REPORT 

The HRD Radio Report showcases the weekly Active Rock Mediabase Charts (compiled by AllAccess.com), and appears every Tuesday on HardRockDaddy.com.  The HRD Radio Report digs deeper into the weekly Active Rock charts, providing commentary, reviews, recommendations and predictions.  It also features opinion pieces on chart action and the music business in general.

Many of the artists featured on the Active Rock charts have already been reviewed on HardRockDaddy.com.

2016 Active Rock Radio / Octane Quarterly Report: Q3

The following is the Active Rock Mediabase Chart for the week ending 11/26/16.  All exclusive HRD content is featured below the chart:

CHART CHART ARTIST SONG TITLE RADIO
POSITION POSITION SPINS
THIS WEEK LAST WEEK THIS WEEK
1 1 HIGHLY SUSPECT “My Name Is Human” 2118
2 2 DISTURBED “Open Your Eyes” 1852
3 5 GHOST “Square Hammer” 1683
4 4 VOLBEAT “Seal The Deal” 1670
5 3 FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH “I Apologize” 1634
6 7 AVENGED SEVENFOLD “The Stage” 1386
7 6 SKILLET “Feel Invincible” 1191
8 10 METALLICA “Atlas,Rise!” 1182
9 8 PRETTY RECKLESS “Take Me Down” 1106
10 13 GREEN DAY “Still Breathing” 1047
11 11 THRICE “Black Honey” 956
12 12 RED SUN RISING “Amnesia” 938
13 14 SHINEDOWN “How Did You Love” 921
14 9 METALLICA “Moth Into Flame” 846
15 15 DINOSAUR PILE-UP “11:11” 790
16 17 KINGS OF LEON “Waste A Moment” 724
17 18 ALTER BRIDGE “Show Me A Leader” 690
18 19 CHEVELLE “Door To Door Cannibals” 682
19 20 A DAY TO REMEMBER “Naivety” 676
20 16 GREEN DAY “Bang Bang” 670
21 21 BEARTOOTH “Hated” 619
22 22 BREAKING BENJAMIN “Never Again” 600
23 25 RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS “Go Robot” 526
24 23 IN FLAMES “The Truth” 471
25 29 KORN “Take Me” 460
26 24 KORN “Rotting In Vain” 440
27 28 GEMINI SYNDROME “Remember We Die” 412
28 31 POP EVIL “If Only For Now” 394
29 30 SIXX:A.M. “We Will Not Go Quietly” 382
30 26 METALLICA “Hardwired” 336
31 32 DEVOUR THE DAY “The Bottom” 303
32 33 STARSET “Monster” 301
33 34 KALEO “Way Down We Go” 276
34 35 ONE LESS REASON “Break Me” 230
35 38 SICK PUPPIES “Where Do I Begin” 220
36 36 THROUGH FIRE “Breathe” 212
37 40 ADELITAS WAY “Ready For War (Pray For Peace) 195
38 41 AVATAR “Night Never” 193
39 39 ART OF ANARCHY “The Madness” 189
40 37 I PREVAIL “Stuck In Your Head” 176
41 44 BLINK-182 “She’s Out Of Her Mind” 162
42 43 AMITY AFFLICTION “All Messed Up” 153
43 45 GOODBYE JUNE “Oh No” 143
44 51 3 DOORS DOWN “The Broken” 133
45 47 SYLAR “Dark Daze” 131
46 54 BLEEKER “Highway” 122
47 48 JUDAH & THE LION “Take It All Back” 122
48 49 NONPOINT “Divided..Conquer Them” 116
49 50 LAMB OF GOD “The Duke” 112
50 46 JIMMY EAT WORLD “Sure and Certain” 99

 

 

PUBLISHER’S PICK OF THE WEEK (By Adam Waldman)

DON BROCO – “Money Power Fame”

Because they overlap genres, Don Broco is somewhat challenging to categorize.  They have an edge with some crunchy riffs, a cool groove and also some pop sensibilities.  “Money Power Fame” offer proof positive that labeling an artist is much less important than having great songs. In the case of the band’s catchy latest single, it is a nice fit for Active Rock radio that is sure to have listeners grooving along to the song, if not outright dancing (at least in their cars). Being heavy enough for typical Active Rock listeners, while also having vocals that are more pop influenced than rock is not an easy line to straddle, but this British quartet does so with precision.  Word of caution…this song will get stuck in your head!
 

 

 

PUBLISHER’S PREDICTIONS (by Adam Waldman)

As predicted last week, Highly Suspect had enough of a lead and momentum to carry them through to a second straight week at #1.  In fact, with a solid spin increase and a decrease in spins for #2 Disturbed, “My Name Is Human” actually buffered its position at the top.  Based on the current trend, there is a chance that the song can ride out the rest of the year on top of the chart (as long as they don’t see a big decline, which has happened to many at the top in recent months).  Ghost’s “Square Hammer” seems to have a clear path to be the next #1 at some point based on the current trends.  Of course, with Metallica and Green Day lurking in the mix, there is always a chance that they catch fire and make a move before the year ends (but, more likely in January).
 

 

HRD SPIN CONTROL (by Adam Waldman and Jon Loveless)

Each week, we will share the songs that we think should be added to rotations, alongside the songs that we feel should be dropped from rotations, either because they are a bad fit for the format, or because they have run their course and it’s time for a new single from the artist.

SPIN IT…

DON BROCO“Money Power Fame”

SEASONS AFTER“Fighter”

BADFLOWER “Animal”

MESSAGE FROM SYLVIA“Heart Of War”

THREE DAYS GRACE“You Don’t Get Me High Anymore”

AFI“White Offering”

BLACKLITE DISTRICT“Broken Souls”

ART OF DYING“Torn Down”

 

DROP IT…

Jimmy Eat World“Sure And Certain”

Dinosaur Pile-Up “11:11”

Kaleo“Way Down We Go”

Kings Of Leon“Waste A Moment”

Judah & The Lion“Take It All Back”

Blink 182“She’s Out Of Her Mind”

Pretty Reckless “Take Me Down”

Skillet – “Feel Invincible”

 

 

THE BREAKDOWN by Jon Loveless

KING OF THE HILL

Highly Suspect definitely had plenty to be thankful for as they spend a second week atop the Mediabase Active Rock Airplay chart.  Despite a bit more movement than you might expect during a holiday week, the band actually slightly increased their advantage over the #2 song from Disturbed, to remain firmly in first place.  Ghost showed nice growth to claim the #3 spot.
 

 

NOTABLE CHART MOVEMENT

Just as the week prior, last week’s only new Top 20 song is also this week’s only new Top 10 song.  Last week it was Metallica.  This week, it’s Green Day.

No changes in the songs in the Top 20 aside from their order.

Only one change in the Top 30, as Pop Evil slides in to replace Metallica’s “Hardwired” (the first single from their new album).

Avatar has the only song to debut in the Top 40 this week

As expected from the early week trends, Three Doors Down arrives in the Top 50, but congratulations are also due to Bleeker for their chart debut this week as well.
 

 

THREE UP & THREE DOWN

RISING

Ghost – “Square Hammer”

Metallica“Atlas, Rise”

Green Day“Still Breathing”

 

FALLING

Skillet“Feel Invincible”

Metallica “Hardwired”

Metallica – “Moth Into Flame”
 

 

TRENDS AND OBSERVATIONS

Another week with scarce change in the Top 50, though it’s to be expected around the holiday.  I am particularly pleased to see Bleeker break through onto the U.S. chart, more than five years after I first noticed them with a hit on the Canadian chart.  It only took a membership shakeup, a name change (known as Bleeker Ridge for most of their career), and five years for U.S. radio to catch up to what I already knew.

 

WRAP-UP

That’s all for this week.  Tune in to HardRockDaddy.com every Tuesday for the HRD Radio Report. \m/

Music Discovery Monday – 11/28/16

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Music Discovery Monday – 11/28/16

Music Discovery Monday shines a light on artists that are not getting the radio attention that they deserve, while also showcasing new singles by established bands that are likely to get airplay in the future.

In addition to appearing on the embedded YouTube playlist below, all songs featured on Music Discovery Monday can be listened to individually by clicking on the hyper-linked song titles above each review.
 

 

 

 ADAM WALDMAN – (Publisher, Hard Rock Daddy)

DEE SNIDER – “We Are The Ones”

Nobody does “us-against-the-world” anthems like Dee Snider.  In 1984, Snider and Twisted Sister gave us one of the greatest rock anthems in history with “We’re Not Gonna Take It.”  Over three decades later, Snider delivers again with “We Are The Ones” (the title track off of his latest solo release).  Referred to as “the song that shaped the sound of the record” by Snider, “We Are The Ones” is about rebellion and believing in yourself.  It’s a modern-day twist on the timeless Twisted Sister classic.

The release of Snider’s solo album is bittersweet for fans of a band that so many of us grew up on, given their recent retirement after a 40-year career.  Perhaps it would have happened anyway, but any notion of Twisted Sister continuing on was put to rest after the tragic passing of A.J. Perro in 2015.

Fans can take solace in the fact that the Twisted Sister sound is still alive and well.  Snider sounds as good as ever on this fist-pumping anthem!
 

 
DEE SNIDER – “We’re Not Gonna Take It” (Piano Version)

Bridging the gap between the retirement of Twisted Sister and the release of Dee Snider’s solo album is a haunting, piano ballad version of “We’re Not Gonna Take It.”  The song that once elicited rebellious moments of joy of those who experienced it in 1984, now tugs on the heartstrings of those same rockers who are all grown up, many raising families of their own.

Snider recorded this version to help raise awareness for Criss Angel’s charity, HELP (Heal Every Life Possible).  The famed illusionist directed the video for the song in the desert outside of Las Vegas.  In the video, you see the purity of Snider dressed in all white contrasted against images of young people shaving their heads, and real footage of kids battling cancer.

Angel and Snider both hail from Long Island, and have known each other since the ‘90s.  In a moment of true class, no fees were charged for the right to use the song.  Together, these two “strong islanders” have created something truly special.

To learn more about the charity and to make donations to this worthy cause, please visit Criss Angel’s Official Website.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

OVERKILL – “Our Finest Hour”

Going strong for over 30 years, this thrash metal band from New Jersey is set to release their latest album, The Grinding Wheel.  The first single from the album, “Our Finest Hour,” is classic Overkill…from the screams of Bobby Blitz to the thunderous bass of D.D. Verni (the two original members of the band).  Sometimes deemed the 5th thrash metal band after “The Big Four,” Overkill has stayed true to their sound through the years, and it looks like this new album won’t be any different.  For fans of the band and this genre, that is a good thing.

 

METAL CHURCH “Reset”

Another old school thrash metal act to release a new album recently is Metal Church.  Their eleventh studio album, XI , is a great comeback record from a band that sold out arenas back in the day.  The single, “Reset,” is a great piece of music that took the Metal Church sound and modernized it for 2016.  Having recently rejoined the band, Mike Howe does a fantastic job on the new album, sounding very much like he did back in 1993.  With the songwriting and composition of Kurdt Vanderhoof (the only original member of the band), XI is a great album to add to your Metal Church catalog.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

ENBOUND – “Give Me Light”

Swedish band Enbound made their debut five years ago with an album of some excellent melodic hard rock with metal influences.  They follow it up now with The Blackened Heart, a decidedly heavier entry with the metal influences holding far more sway. There are some great riffs and an amazing choruses on this one, not to mention an unexpected acoustic guitar near the end.  Also, check out “Feel The Flame” with a more progressive style, courtesy of a guest appearance by Mike LePond (Symphony X) on bass.

 

S91 – “The Cry of Life”

S91 is a Christian progressive metal band out of Tuscany that has gone through several lineup changes since their inception ten years ago.  Their first full-length album (released five years ago) was in their native Italian.  Their new release, Behold The Mankind, is instantly more accessible internationally, having opted this time for English lyrics, while they continue to achieve a progressive sound that courts wider appeal thanks to an emphasis on harmony and melody.

 

SUBMISSIONS

To be considered for Music Discovery Monday, please e-mail a link to the song being submitted on YouTube and an artist bio to – submissions@MusicDiscoveryMonday.com

My Rock and Roll Journey: Nathan Colucci – BallRoom Babies – Chapter 2

my-rock-and-roll-journey-nathan-colucci-ballroom-babies-chapter-2

Written by Nathan Colucci (The BallRoom Babies)

Mike, Steve and I had started up the group again, and were gigging around the local bar scene. We were performing cover gigs, which would normally consist of four 45-minute sets.  We played tunes from bands like The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones, Van Halen, ZZ Top, Queen, etc.  At the same time, we started developing our own unique writing style. and performing our own material across the Greater Toronto Area.  Between the cover and original gigs, we were playing 2-3 times a week.

I was wrapping up my time at Cawrthra Park Secondary School, and began to explore jazz and classical music.  Throughout grades 11 and 12, I was influenced (and motivated greatly) by my music teachers.  They introduced me to new styles of music that I would not have discovered by myself.  I began listening to artists and composers like Miles Davis, Pat Metheny, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Dave Brubeck and Eric Whitacre.

Something that always stuck with me was when one of my teachers said to me…“You wouldn’t eat the same meal every single day of your life, so why would you only listen to the same type of music?”

I began to realize that it wasn’t necessarily just rock and roll music that I enjoyed, but any style of music that was bursting with passion and creativity.  I started playing the upright bass, and really dove into practicing and pushing myself to become a better player.  I was exploring the music of top bass players like Christian McBride, Jaco Pastorius, Ray Brown and Victor Wooten. I wanted to push my playing to the level of these greats.

I would stay in the practice rooms at Cawthra for hours practicing electric and upright bass.  I remember my fingers being so blistered from practicing for some performances that I had to put hockey tape over them to stop them from bursting throughout the set.  I really loved this time period because I was constantly being introduced to new and exciting music while pushing my own playing to a new level.

By the end of grade 12 I decided that I wanted to follow in my brothers’ footsteps and go to Humber College for their music program.  It was the only school I sent an application to, and I was accepted.

Humber was like getting hit by a ton of bricks. For me, there was absolutely no way to comprehend the speed and intensity at which I would be pushed to excel.  I thought that I was practicing a lot before getting into the program, but it was nothing compared to what was expected from my new professors.  Practicing began to consume all the time in my life that wasn’t already dedicated to gigging or being in class.  I was surrounded by some of the best players and hardest working musicians I have ever met in my life, which only further motivated me to push myself harder.

I was drinking coffee like water, and like so many other college and university students, a good night’s sleep became far and few between.  Unfortunately, by my third year in the program, this constant grind began to wear on me, and what was once motivating and exciting became exhausting.  At the time, I was teaching five nights a week, gigging steadily with the guys every weekend, working 3-4 shifts a week at a grocery store, and attending classes five days a week. I was mentally and physically burnt out, and something had to give.  So, halfway through my third year, I dropped out of Humber College.

The band had recently released our first full-length album, Change To Silver.  With extra time on my hands, I started booking as many shows as possible across Ontario.  Because of our work schedule, I booked us on “weekend tours,” where we would head out on Friday, do two or three shows out of town, and come home in time for our Monday morning shifts.  This was a great time for me because I got the chance to meet artists all across Canada.  It started to feel like I was part of a music community.

We released a few singles from the record, and everything seemed to be moving in the right direction.  It felt great to be playing so many new places.  There is nothing quite like that feeling.  We kept booking shows and playing gigs while working day jobs and writing songs for our next release.

 

In Chapter 3 of “My Rock and Roll Journey,” I’ll talk about the writing and recording of our sophomore release…

RELATED ARTICLES:

My Rock and Roll Journey: Nathan Colucci – The BallRoom Babies – Chapter 1

MORE “MY ROCK AND ROLL JOURNEY” STORIES

TONY HOUSH – Seasons After

SAL COSTA – Smashing Satellites

JOEY “CHICAGO” WALSER – Devour The Day

ADAM TROY – Sonic X

SHAUN SOHO – Crash Midnight

TONY LA SELVA – Ugly Melon

MICHAEL DEL PIZZO – Sunflower Dead