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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 2/23/17: BLACK HISTORY MONTH

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 2/23/17: BLACK HISTORY MONTH

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.

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)

LIVING COLOUR – “Cult Of Personality” (1988)

In celebration of Black History Month, we are all honoring some of our favorite black hard rock/metal artists.

Back in 1988, when Living Colour burst onto the scene, they had the benefit of being featured on MTV, giving them a much higher profile than most other black hard rock/metal artists (outside of the legendary Jimi Hendrix).  The grunge movement and the drastic shift of MTV eventually left the band without the outlet that they had when they debuted with Vivid.  A handful of songs from their debut album got attention on MTV, but none made as much of an impact as the in-your-face “Cult Of Personality.”

Like many big hits, this song was written in just one rehearsal session.  The instantly recognizable riff was stumbled upon when practicing another song.  It would go on to become the band’s biggest hit, winning a Grammy in 1990 for Best Hard Rock Performance.

What separates Living Colour from most other black hard rock/metal artists is that they became a household name as a band made up exclusively of black members.  Although songs like “Cult Of Personality” help to expose the band to the masses, it was also their image that helped make them rise above the din during the height of the hair band era.

While most other hard rock musicians were sporting spandex and teased hair, Living Colour had a style all their own.  They were truly unique, especially frontman Corey Glover whose multi-color braids mesmerized you as he banged his head.  The music was just as bold and powerful.  In a genre that is predominantly white, Living Colour made a meaningful, lasting impact that is to be celebrated, particularly during Black History Month.

 

 

KING’S X – “Goldilox” (1988)

Back in 1988, I discovered King’s X in a bit of an unusual way.  They had just come out with their debut album, Out Of The Silent Planet, and were still unknown.  My plan for the summer of ’88 was to do an internship one day a week at Concrete Marketing / Management.  Although I would eventually go on to work for the company several years later, that internship lasted for only one day.

The company was in the process of moving offices, so they weren’t sure that they would even be able to give me any guidance during the internship.  It was a disappointment, but on the bright side, I was given a parting gift – the chance to raid the promo closet.  Back then, retail was strong, and Concrete Marketing was (by far) the best at marketing hard rock and metal, so there was plenty to choose from.  I grabbed a number of titles from artists that I already knew, and one that intrigued me because of the album cover artwork – King’s X, Out Of The Silent Planet.

When I dropped the needle on the record, I was blown away.  King’s X was unlike anything that I had ever heard before.  And though they have put out some incredible albums through the years, their debut still remains my favorite, and “Goldilox” remains one of my favorite songs ever by any artist.  As I listened to the album, I had no idea that Doug Pinnick was black.  All I knew was that I was instantly drawn to his distinct, soulful delivery that oozed charisma and stood out from all other hard rock music of the time.

When I finally got the chance to see King’s X at the Roseland Ballroom in NYC, my awe of Pinnick continued to grow.  Not only was his voice as flawless live as it was on record, but he is also one of the best showman to ever grace the stage.  I don’t know exactly how tall Pinnick is, but to say that he is a towering presence is no exaggeration.  In a lifetime of going to concerts, it’s hard to pinpoint many specific moments.  However, one that still sticks with me to this day is seeing Pinnick take a running start and stage diving into the crowd, eventually landing several rows from the stage.

In my opinion, Pinnick is still one of the most underrated frontman of all-time, and King’s X one of the most underrated bands.  It’s hard to think of anyone more deserving to honor on this special Black History Month edition of Hard Rock Music Time Machine.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

BAD BRAINS – “I Against I” (1986)

Growing up, I was lucky to be part of a music scene where race had no bearing on what we listened to.  When we all listened to punk and hardcore, we never paid attention to black musicians or white musicians.  We all listened to hardcore because we were angry teens mad at the world, disillusioned, and didn’t want to be part of the norm.  Bad Brains was one of the bands we all listened to repeatedly.  Whenever an outsider would make a comment like…“oh, I didn’t know they were black,” the response was typically a blank stare or a “yeah, so?”.  The band combined jazz fusion, funk, metal and reggae to come up with a unique sound.  When they introduced the speed of punk, the political lyrics and PMA (Positive Mental Attitude) into the mix, their music became the sound that hundreds of thousands of punks and hardcore kids grabbed on to.  Despite the band’s objection to being called the innovators of hardcore punk, Bad Brains (to me) are THE pioneers of hardcore punk.

 

GOD FORBID – “Anti-Hero” (2004)

One of the best metalcore/thrash bands to have come out in the late ‘90s was New Jersey’s God Forbid.  The band (which had three black members) came out around the same time as the New Wave of American Metal (along with bands such as Lamb of God and Shadow’s Fall).  Their sound is loud, heavy and fast with Byron Davis’s death metal/metalcore screams, Corey Pierce’s thunderous drumming and Doc Coyle’s amazing guitar riffage.  I was saddened to hear of the band breaking up in 2013, but the sound of God Forbid lives on.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

CROWN OF THORNS (JEAN BEAUVOIR) – “All I Wanna Do” (2008)

Jean Beauvoir is an incredibly talented musician best known for his smooth vocals and masterful bass work, but who can deftly handle almost any instrument in the band.  Born in Chicago, and with proud Haitian roots, he’s also a prolific songwriter, producer, and entertainment executive, and the founder and CEO of Voodoo Island Entertainment Group.

Jean got his start in the doo-wop group the Flamingoes, and then playing bass for the Plasmatics in the early ‘80s.  He worked for a couple years with Stephen Van Zandt before launching a solo career in the mid-‘80s, catching a big break when his song, “Feel The Heat” was chosen by Sylvester Stallone for the hit movie Cobra.

His music has spanned many genres, but my personal favorite is the hard rock he produces with his band Crown of Thorns.  This song comes from their 2008 album, Faith.

 

SEVENDUST (LAJON WITHERSPOON) – “Thank You” (2015)

Born in Nashville and raised in Atlanta, Lajon Witherspoon has music running through his blood.  His dad was a singer in a funk band, and when he took up music himself, Witherspoon started with the soul group Body and Soul.  It was while singing with them that he was discovered and recruited by the band that would eventually evolve into Sevendust.

He has had an incredible career as the lead singer of one of the most successful alternative metal bands, putting out eleven hit albums with Sevendust.  Boasting one of the most distinctive, soulful voices in metal, he was even ranked by the magazine Hit Parader as one of the top 100 metal vocalists of all time (coming in at # 35).

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 2/16/17

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 2/16/17

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.

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)

CINDERELLA – “Long Cold Winter” (1988)

Cinderella’s “Long Cold Winter” is actually a song about a love lost.  The song has nothing to do with the temperature; it’s just poetic license.  However, living in a cold climate that has already been pummeled with snow (and still only half way through the season), this song has been running through my head in recent weeks.

If you look at the photo featured above, it’s plain to see why Cinderella has always been looked at as a “hair band.”  Aesthetics aside, their music has always been more in the realm of blues-based hard rock bands like AC/DC and Led Zeppelin.  Had they arrived on the scene a decade earlier with a different look, there’s an excellent chance that they would have been looked at as one of the great bands of the generation.

“Long Cold Winter” is a brooding, slow-tempo blues rock song that, if not for Tom Keifer’s distinct vocals, may leave you thinking that it was Led Zeppelin as you listen.  Although it is about lost love, the song captures the melancholic feeling that you get from the winter blues.  If “hair band” is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear Cinderella mentioned, I strongly suggest listening to “Long Cold Winter” to see that they are being unfairly categorized.
 

 

SAVATAGE – “Dead Winter Dead” (1995)

If ever there was a band that comes to mind during the winter, it is Savatage.  Well…sort of.  While this underrated band flies below the radar of many, Savatage spawned the tremendously popular Trans-Siberian Orchestra (a band whose music transcends genre preference).  The Savatage name and perception as a metal band ended up creating a barrier to the masses.  Founder Jon Oliva admitted to being frustrated that the success of “Christmas Eve Sarajevo 12/4” (originally featured on the Dead Winter Dead concept album) came under the TSO moniker.

Dead Winter Dead was the first Savatage album after the tragic passing of Oliva’s brother (Criss), who was killed by a drunk driver in 1993.  Criss was the original lead guitarist for the band.  This album featured Al Pitrelli on guitars.

The title track off of the album is a gritty rocker that chugs along underneath theatrical vocals.  Like sun breaking through dark, ominous clouds, Pitrelli’s guitar work shines like a beacon of light.

If you’re only familiar with Trans-Siberian Orchestra, and have yet to discover what Savatage has to offer, this is a good place to start, before working your way backwards through their catalog.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

MACHINE HEAD – “Davidian” (1994)

In 1994, a little heavy metal band from California released an album called Burn My Eyes.  Combining groove-laden Pantera-esque riffs with the thrash metal speed of Slayer and Exodus, Machine Head rose to the top of the metal genre in the mid-‘90s.  One of the more socially aware bands during that time period, the band screamed and tore their way through topics such as the L.A. riots, abuse, urban decay and disillusion for society.  Although their sound has changed a bit in recent times, “Davidian” is a great song that provides a snapshot of life in the mid-‘90s.

 

SOULFLY – “Back to the Primitive” (2000)

Upon leaving Sepultura in 1996, Max Cavalera immediately went to work and started his new band, Soulfly.  Taking the Brazilian tribal influences evident in Sepultura’s roots, Soulfly continued on its course by mixing Brazilian tribal drumming and world music with thrash metal, resulting in a groove-heavy eclectic sound.  The debut of Soulfly boasted a plethora of top-named musician contributions such as Roy Mayorga on drums, Tom Araya from Slayer, Burton C. Bell and Dino Cazares from Fear Factory and Chino Moreno from Deftones.  The band is still going strong, with an album recently released in 2015.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

LORDI – “It Snows In Hell” (2006)

They wear monster masks and litter the stage with horror props, but despite the showmanship, ultimately it’s about the music. Layered and pounding, at times playful, at times chilling, this is some powerful melodic metal. This one comes from the band’s 2006 breakout album, The Arockalypse, and is likely to be performed when the band comes all the way from Finland for their much-anticipated American tour.

 

DAVID READMAN – “Evil Combination” (2007)

When he’s not fronting for Pink Cream 69, Voodoo Circle or Almanac, this busy vocalist can be found putting out some amazing solo material.  This melodic metal piece comes from his 2007 self-titled album.  He is currently reforming that project, bringing on some Dutch musicians and changing the name, slightly, to The David Readman Band.  New music is expected soon!

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 2/9/17

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 2/9/17

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.

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)

APRIL WINE – “Just Between You And Me” (1981)

A number of my recent selections on Hard Rock Music Time Machine have been more politically charged.  With Valentine’s Day coming up, I made the decision a few weeks ago to share some of the songs that take me back to a special time in my life.  I had no idea that this would actually become a bittersweet moment when I made the selection.  This week, April Wine bassist Steve Lang passed away at the age of 67.  Despite the sadness, I still want this to be a positive memory.

Upon doing some research, I found that this beautiful love song was actually the first video played by a Canadian artist on August 1, 1981 (the day that MTV made its debut).  While the band would enjoy some success it the U.S., this song and “Sign Of The Gypsy Queen” are the ones that resonated most with me because the videos were aired on MTV fairly often.

Like all songs, “Just Between You And Me” had its moment in the sun on MTV and then eventually faded.  A decade after its release, the song once again had special meaning to me when it appeared on a compilation album called Heavy Metal Love.  My girlfriend and I nearly wore out that CD, and this song was always one of the favorites.

It’s hard to believe that over 35 years have passed since I first heard this song.  All these years later, it still hasn’t lost its appeal in the slightest.  With an instantly recognizable, emotionally stirring riff and sweet, melodic vocals, this classic is a perfect song to reflect back upon as Valentine’s Day approaches.

 

 
FIREHOUSE – “Love Of A Lifetime” (1990)

The summer of ’91 was a happy time in life.  Hair metal was nearing its demise, but none of us knew it at the time.  It was the last summer that I can recall where rock music (at least in the mainstream) predominantly featured songs about love and other less serious matters.  Sure, the hair might have been huge and the outfits kind of cartoonish in hindsight, but life was good and music like Firehouse’s “Love Of A Lifetime” contributed to the bliss of the times.

This incredible power ballad off of the band’s debut self-titled album ultimately became their biggest hit.  And to think, it was almost left off of the album entirely.

Vocalist CJ Snare wrote “Love Of A Lifetime” from the perspective of finding the perfect love, but he had yet to find it himself.  The song was written after a solo gig in a hotel lounge with only a keyboard and drum machine.  Snare was hesitant to play it for the band after Jon Bon Jovi told him that it would ruin his career if he released it.  It wasn’t until Epic Records told the band that they needed a strong power ballad for the album, and discussed bringing in outside writers that Snare shared it with the other members of Firehouse.  The rest, as they say, is history.

“Love Of A Lifetime” is arguably one of the best power ballads ever written, and continues to be a fan favorite and wedding song for many rockers.  If you’re looking for the perfect song to share with your Valentine, this very well may be it.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

FUGAZI “Waiting Room” (1988)

After Minor Threat (founders of the straight-edge hardcore movement), Ian MacKaye continued his music with Fugazi.  Similar to Minor Threat, Fugazi had a similar DIY work ethic with regards to production and record producing, while giving the middle finger to the music industry.  In a way, Fugazi helped usher in the “alternative rock and metal” genre, being a huge influence to the songwriting styles of the likes of Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam.  Over the years, MacKaye has been considered a “godfather” of punk/hardcore (similar to Henry Rollins).  “Waiting Room” will always bring back high school memories for me.

 

NOFX – “The Idiots Are Taking Over” (2003)

Maybe it’s the current political climate that’s causing me to listen to a lot of old school punk rock lately.  This genre of music preached anti-authoritarian, anti-government and anti-religion.  It gave many modern metal bands their influences, while giving many young ones a sounding board for their frustrations and pessimism in their current lives.  I am not sure what young ones do nowadays, but when I was a teen, I waved the punk flag proudly with songs like this one.  “The Idiots Are Taking Over” (from The War on Errorism) is exactly what you think the song is about.  This punk band from California rants about politics with anger and contempt…

“There’s no point for democracy when ignorance is celebrated.” 

Does this line ring a bell?
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

EDGUY – “The Piper Never Dies” (2004)

German power metal hit a peak in 2004 with Edguy’s Hellfire Club.  The album opened with the majestic “Mysteria” (originally intended to also be the album title), before flowing into this epic masterpiece.  The album continued on from there to pound out some of the band’s biggest hits that they still play live today.

 

RAGE – “Empty Hollow” (2010)

German power metal band Rage has been cranking out the riffs since 1984.  Over their 30 plus years, they’ve gone through many lineup changes.  One constant, however, has been Peter “Peavy” Wagner on vocals and bass. Here, on the band’s nineteenth studio album, Strings to a Web, he teams with guitarist Victor Smolski for a riveting lineup of songs.  This one is the title track of a suite of songs within that album.

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 2/2/17

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 2/2/17

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.

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)

DEF LEPPARD – “Women” (1987)

When Def Leppard’s Hysteria came out 30 years ago, the world was a much different place.  The album that launched Def Leppard into the upper echelon of rock acts remains their most successful release to date.  One of the first singles released was “Women” – a song that goes back to the creation of the gender.  It’s not exactly a song of empowerment, but that was then and this is now.

Fast forward to 2017…an anthem about women takes on a whole new meaning.  There have always been political movements, but the common bond was never a gender.  Many people in America thought that 2017 would be historic because we would have our first woman president.  After a shocking election, 2017 is historic for women, but it is not because the glass ceiling was broken.  Rather, it is historic because millions of women have been galvanized by troubling political times.  They are poised to be the next populist group to make their voices heard.

Given the circumstances, it seems appropriate that Def Leppard’s “Women” comes from an album entitled Hysteria.  This album offers proof positive that good things can come from troubling times, and that the seemingly impossible can be achieved with unwavering determination.

Hysteria is the first Def Leppard album to be released after drummer Rick Allen tragically lost his left arm in a car accident.  Rather than finding a new drummer, the band stuck by their bandmate as he learned to play drums with one arm.

The tour to support Hysteria featured Def Leppard playing in the round.  This gave the audience a unique perspective that is rarely seen in rock and roll.  I still remember seeing this tour.  We were seated on the side of the stage that allowed us to see backside of Allen’s drum kit.  It was awe-inspiring to watch.  It seems impossible, but losing an arm arguably made Allen and even better drummer than he was before.

If a one-armed drummer can become the star of the show, you have to believe that anything is possible.  It gives me hope that the women of today will become the driving force for change in the future.

 

 

QUEENSRYCHE – “Resistance” (1990)

Opening for Def Leppard on many Hysteria tour dates was Queensryche.  Keeping with the theme of the women’s movement, the band was touring in support of their 1986 release, Rage For Order.  It wouldn’t be long after that Queensryche would release their epic, politically-charged concept album, Operation: Mindcrime.  While Mindcrime is the quintessential Queensryche album for die-hard fans, the band garnered their most commercial success with the follow-up album, Empire.

Although the title track of Empire featured Queensryche’s political views front and center, most of the other songs tackled the more customary rock theme…matters of the heart.  However, one other song stayed with the political theme, and seems particularly poignant today – “Resistance.”

The title of this song has become a battle cry for the opposition to the current administration of the United States.  A lifetime ago, “Resistance” was merely one of the deeper cuts on an album filled with hits.  Today, it represents something much more meaningful.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

SUICIDAL TENDENCIES – “How Will I Laugh Tomorrow” (1988)

In my opinion, the first thrash metal album released by Suicidal Tendencies was 1988’s How Will I Laugh Tomorrow When I Can’t Even Smile Today.  The band’s first two albums were rooted in punk and hardcore, but when this album was released, I was blown away by the sheer musicianship and thrash-filled style change.  What made this such a breakthrough album?  The addition of a rhythm guitarist to the lineup, the intense soloing of Rocky George and  the addition of Robert Trujillo (Metallica) on bass.  The songs became more lengthy and structured, and the sound quality was highly polished.  This is one of the best thrash albums to be released in the 1980s.

 

JUDAS PRIEST “Freewheel Burning” (1984)

When this song came out (off of Defenders of the Faith) in 1984, it shook the metal world and knocked us all on our asses.  Sure, there were thrash metal bands playing that speed, but none that incorporated the speed of this song with the elements that Judas Priest displayed…Dave Holland’s drumming, Ian Hill’s thunderous bass, the heavy, fast riff wizardry of Glenn Tipton and KK Downing, topped off with the soaring operatic vocals of Rob Halford.  This was unheard of before “Freewheel Burning.”  This song always takes me back to my middle school years, sitting at the back of the bus with a boom box blasting it.  I memorized every drum fill, every screech of the guitar and every lyric while sketching the Judas Priest logo on my notebook.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

BRUCE DICKINSON – “Devil On A Hog” (2005)

When not fronting Iron Maiden, Bruce Dickinson has put out some amazing solo albums.  This rocker comes from his 2005 album, Tyranny of Souls.  His vocals are as powerful as ever, against a backdrop of driving guitars and pounding drums.  The music is fierce, but always melodic and insanely catchy.

 

AIRTIME – “Headstream/River Runs Deeps” (2007)

Airtime saw guitarist/vocalist Rik Emmett of Triumph pair with Michael Shotton of Von Groove.  They put out only one album together, Liberty Manifesto, but it is filled with everything that made them both stars.  This one tiptoes in on acoustic guitar before racing into some heavier melodies, and shows that, twenty years after Triumph, Emmett could still belt out some powerful notes.

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 1/26/17

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 1/26/17

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.

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)

MUSE – “Uprising” (2009)

Rock and roll has always been about rebellion.  Now, more than any time in recent memory, that fighting spirit is needed.  As the classic quote from Spider-Man says…“with great power comes great responsibility.”  We have entered a period in history where we all have a voice thanks to social media, but that doesn’t mean that those in power won’t continue to try and silence our voices.  I’d love to use this forum to take nostalgic trips down memory lane, and the power that music has had on me.  However, the power of music goes well beyond happy memories.

Music provides us a way of knowing that others feel (or have felt) just as we do now.  Muse may not be the first band that comes to mind when you think of anti-establishment rebellion, but “Uprising” taps into the inner turmoil that makes you want to scream when the powers that be act in a manner that goes against everything that you believe in.

The simple (but powerful) drum beat that carries throughout the song sets the marching tone for a unified force.  The music is haunting at times, as are the vocals which cut deep with a mixture of defiance and pain.  I’ve always been one to pay attention to the lyrics of a song.  These lyrics hit home more than anytime that I’ve heard the song since it came out in 2009.  I recommend reading the lyrics as you listen.
 

 
GREY HOLIDAY – “Revolution” (2007)

When Grey Holiday’s “Revolution” came to mind to feature on HRMTM, I knew very little about them (aside from the fact that they were a Christian Rock band).  Truth be told, this is the only song that I even remembered from the band.  After doing some research, I found out that they cite this week’s featured artist (Muse) as one of their influences.  The career of this Texas quartet was short-lived, but they left their mark with “Revolution.”

“Revolution” is a thought-provoking anthem of hope for a brighter future even when things seem bleak.  The song is about letting your voice be heard, and not giving into the madness.  While it has an air of rebellion, it doesn’t feel angry, rather uplifting and motivational, especially in the middle when the song takes a dramatic turn with the heavy gang vocals.

Just as with Muse’s “Uprising,” I recommend paying close attention to the lyrics as you listen to a song from a band that never reached their full potential.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

EXODUS “Bonded by Blood” (1985)

One of the greatest thrash metal bands (and founders of the genre) was the Bay Area’s Exodus.  This album is often coined as one of the most influential thrash metal albums of all-time, and helped shape the genre for years to come.  Featuring Gary Holt on guitar (now with Slayer) and original guitarist Kirk Hammett (Metallica), “Bonded by Blood” – the title track off of the band’s 1985 release – is pure thrash metal.  In fact, every song on the album boasts signature heavy riffs, blazing guitar solos and fast tempos.  How I wish that music nowadays was this innovative.

 

D.R.I. – “Acid Rain” (1992)

Bands that stand out always have a particular tone and style to their songs.  Houston’s D.R.I. has always had a unique sound – from Spike Cassidy’s crunchy, heavy guitar sound to Kurt Brecht’s trademark vocals.  One of the premier crossover bands of the ‘80s and early ‘90s, D.R.I. appealed to fans of both the hardcore punk genre and the thrash metal genre.  Their music was political, nihilistic and anti-authoritarian.  It grooved in such a way that it would be difficult not to move at one of their shows (thus the formation of the band’s logo).  I hear that they have re-formed and are touring again.  Even though I am sure their music will cause me to move just as much as it did 30 years ago, I’ll leave the moshing to the younger generation this time around.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

ANGRA – “Carry On” (1993)

In 1991, three Brazilian music students formed the band Angra.  Just two years later, they would alter the metal landscape with their first album, Angels Cry.  Other bands (Dream Theater, Blind Guardian) were experimenting already with the interplay between elements of classical music and metal, but it was this newcomer that brought that fusion full throttle on their debut.  The vision for this template came largely from vocalist/keyboardist Andre Matos, who hits some high notes on this rollicking number.  Matos has since moved on to a solo career, but the band continues to put out quality power and progressive metal with new front man Fabio Lione.

 

NIGHTWISH – “Ever Dream” (2002)

Finland’s Nightwish combines sweeping symphonies with blazing guitars and pounding rhythms. This one comes from their fourth album, Century Child, and features the operatic vocals of the band’s original lead singer, Tarja Turunen.

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 1/19/17

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 1/19/17

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)

IRON MAIDEN – “2 Minutes To Midnight” (1984)

Back in 1984, I remember pumping my fist and banging my head as Iron Maiden played “2 Minutes To Midnight” on the Powerslave tour, never giving a thought to the meaning of the lyrics.  It was the year that people were mostly talking about George Orwell’s famous work.  And though the Cold War was still a threat, it certainly wasn’t top of mind.  Nor was the Doomsday Clock (which is what this song is referencing).

As a teenager, there is a feeling of immortality, and concern over the events of the world took a back seat to typical high school life.  It was easy to avoid current events back then, as you had to deliberately watch the news or read the papers.  The ubiquity of social media and 24/7 news channels have made it impossible for the teens of today to enjoy such blissful ignorance.

The 9/11 attacks robbed citizens of the United States of our innocence, but once things settled down, it didn’t feel like time was running out on the Doomsday Clock.  With a much different perspective today than 1984, it feels like “2 Minutes To Midnight” may be something that we reminisce about.  Of course, this feeling only applies to those who believe in climate change and arguably the most dangerous group of world leaders in our lifetime.  These days, when I listen to my favorite track off of Powerslave, it is not with my fist pumping or my head banging, just a sense that this song may be more relevant than many are willing to admit…

“As the madmen play on words and make us all dance their song to the tune of starving millions to make a better gun.”

 

 

JUDAS PRIEST – “Some Heads Are Gonna Roll” (1984)

It’s purely coincidental that my second selection also comes from 1984.  Back in 1984, Judas Priest and Iron Maiden were among the biggest names in metal.  Their music provided the soundtrack to the youth of many Gen Xers.  Like Maiden, Priest wasn’t shy about writing thought-provoking lyrics that questioned power in the wrong hands.

Like “2 Minutes To Midnight,” “Some Heads Are Gonna Roll” was just a song that made you bang your head and pump your fists when it was played live on the Defenders Of The Faith tour.  Fast forward to today, and the song’s lyrics take on an entirely different meaning.

Judas Priest had its share of government interference with the PMRC, but I never realized just how prophetic the lyrics to “Some Heads Are Gonna Roll” were at the time.  Check them out as you listen to the song to see what I mean…

“If the man with the power can’t keep it under control, some heads are gonna roll.”
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

RAMMSTEIN – “Ich Tu Dir Weh” (2009)

Rammstein, in my opinion, is the best reason to learn German.   These industrial metal giants from Germany made it big in the States with their single “Du Hast,” and has had quite the following since that time.  “Ich Tu Dir Weh” comes from their 2009 album, Liebe ist fur alle da, and boasts the Rammstein signature heavy groove and Till Lindemann’s baritone vocals.  When the band plays this song live, they use a ton of pyrotechnics.  Interesting side note: the song was banned in Germany for its lyrical content.  My German isn’t very good, but that’s not going to stop me from singing along when I see these guys in June.

 

SUPERJOINT RITUAL – “Fuck Your Enemy” (2002)

After Pantera’s disbanding, the remaining members of the iconic metal band formed their own projects.  Dimebag Darrell and Vinny Abbott formed Damageplan.  Phil Anselmo and Rex Brown formed Down.  In between recording and touring with Down, Anselmo decided to continue with another project called Superjoint Ritual.  Of all the side projects during this time, Superjoint was the only band that I felt captured the spirit of Pantera (even turned up a notch).  Superjoint took Pantera’s groove and embellished it with hardcore punk, and sprinkled in a little death metal as well.  The result was a heavy, fast and furious metal masterpiece.  “Fuck Your Enemy” comes from the band’s first release, Use Once and Destroy.  Give this song a listen.  I dare you to not move along with the groove!
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

ALLEN LANDE – “Just A Dream” (2005)

Allen-Lande sees two consummate metal vocalists pairing up and singing brilliantly against each other to the backdrop of melodic metal.  Russell Allen (Symphony X) and Jorn Lande (Jorn, ex-Masterplan) made their team debut in 2005 with The Battle, which included this favorite.  The songs were co-written, produced, and performed together with Magnus Karlsson (Primal Fear, Starbreaker, Last Tribe), who would also contribute heavily to the collaboration’s next two albums, before being supplanted in 2013 by guitarist Timo Tolkki (ex-Stratovarius).

 

JORN – “Song For Ronnie James” (2010)

In 2010 the metal world mourned the loss of one of its superstars, Ronnie James Dio.  There were numerous tributes to the legendary vocalist, but perhaps none so poignant as Norwegian vocalist Jorn Lande’s 2010 release, Dio.  In addition to some excellent covers of Ronnie James’s work with Dio, Rainbow and Deep Purple, the album included this moving original.

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 1/12/17

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 1/12/17

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)

ROB ZOMBIE – “The Great American Nightmare” (1997)

In some ways, it’s hard to believe that Rob Zombie’s “The Great American Nightmare” came out 20 years ago.  In other ways, the song seems like a current rock song.  Confused?  This song was originally written to be featured on the soundtrack to Private Parts, a biopic about radio legend Howard Stern.  It quickly became much more than that as it was turned into the theme song for his daily radio show.  It’s the song that I’ve heard more than any other over the past two decades, but ironically, I very rarely hear it in its entirety, as it is always talked over before it ends.  Not only does the song/movie turn 20 this year, but it also happens to be Howard’s birthday today, so this seemed like the most fitting song to choose to kick of Hard Rock Music Time Machine 2017.

 

RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS (f. LL COOL J) – “I Make My Own Rules” (1997)

It certainly hasn’t gotten the exposure that Rob Zombie has gotten, but “I Make My Own Rules” was also featured on the Private Parts soundtrack.  If you are familiar with Howard Stern, you know that this song also would have been an excellent choice to be the theme song to his radio show.  LL opens the song with swagger – “You know the rules of the game baby…We can handle this like gentlemen, or we can get into some gangsta shit…This is big time rock and roll baby” – before the Chili Peppers jump in with their signature funk rock sound, which carries throughout.  LL can be as smooth as silk, but he can also lay the hammer down (as he does on this underrated track).  This is one of the more forgotten rap/rock collaborations, but it’s a good one that is worthy of revisiting.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

AMON AMARTH – “Guardians of Asgaard” (2008)

I admit it; I was watching Vikings when this song was playing in the background, which inspired me to include it on this week’s HRMTM.  This melodic death metal band delivers with a killer track from their seventh studio album, Twilight of the Thunder God.  Their music is heavy, with chugging riffs and a pounding rhythm section that gives you no choice but to bang your head.  Their videos are entertaining as well, taking the Nordic Viking mythos to another level.  Sound the battle horns when you blast Amon Amarth!

 

ARCH ENEMY – “You Will Know My Name” (2014)

In the realm of melodic death metal, props must be given to Sweden’s Arch Enemy.  “You Will Know My Name” – from the band’s 9th studio album, War Eternal – starts off with a classical style guitar riff, some keyboards and an almost flamenco drum beat while exploding into the death metal growls of Alissa White-Gluz.  Arch Enemy is one of few female-fronted melodic death metal bands that is able to produce material that appeals to the fans of this genre.  One cannot think of melodic death metal without including Arch Enemy on that list.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

CIRCUS MAXIMUS – “Game of Life” (2012)

Norwegian progressive metal band Circus Maximus released one of their best albums in 2012 with Nine. This upbeat (but complex) number from that album moves a series of poignant questions through some inspired arrangements.

 

ANDRE MATOS – “Separate Ways” (2007)

In 2007, Brazilian vocalist and pianist Andre Matos (ex-Viper, ex-Angra, ex-Shaman) put out his first solo album, Time To Be Free.  In addition to some amazing original material, he did justice to Steve Perry’s high range vocals while covering this Journey classic.  The guitars are amped up high, together with his voice, as the band brilliantly “metalizes” the song.

 

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 12/29/16: RIP 2016 – A Tribute to Artists Lost

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 12/29/16

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.

The final theme of the year is, unfortunately, very fitting – RIP 2016…A Tribute To Artists Lost This Year.

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)

EMERSON, LAKE & PALMER – “Lucky Man” (1970)

And so it goes.  We end 2016 the same way that it began, and for that matter, carried throughout the year.  Another rock legend gone too soon.  This time, we say goodbye to ELP singer/bassist/producer Greg Lake, who passed away recently at the age of 69.  To fully acknowledge Lake’s brilliance, “Lucky Man” was chosen as the ELP song to feature to honor him.  Not only is it one of the most popular songs from this virtuoso progressive trio, it goes all the way back in time to the band’s debut album (although the song was written many years before the band’s formation).

Lake started playing guitar at the age of 12.  Using the first chords that he learned, he wrote an acoustic version of “Lucky Man” that same year.  Using improvised arrangements by the band, this signature song has more than stood the test of time.

Some of the most well-known/popular songs have been late additions to an album, “Lucky Man” included.  The rest of the band didn’t like the childhood version of the song, and it was only worked on with Carl Palmer when another track was needed for ELP’s debut album.  The lyrics of the song tell a story of a man who had everything, went to war, and then died…pretty deep for a 12-year old.

Having lost Keith Emerson earlier this year, Palmer is the lone living member of this legendary band.  After learning of the passing of Lake, Palmer stated…

“It is with great sadness that I must now say goodbye to my friend and fellow band-mate, Greg Lake.  Greg’s soaring voice and skill as a musician will be remembered by all who knew his music and recordings he made with ELP and King Crimson.  I have fond memories of those great years we had in the 1970s and many memorable shows we performed together.  Having lost Keith this year as well, has made this particularly hard for all of us.”
 

 
KING CRIMSON – “The Court Of The Crimson King” (1969)

A year before forming ELP, Greg Lake was a part of the original incarnation of King Crimson, one of the most influential bands in progressive rock history.  The band’s debut album, In The Court Of The Crimson King, incorporated elements of jazz, classical and symphonic music, a departure from the blues-based influence of most other rock bands at the time.  Although Lake didn’t compose this song, his haunting, charismatic vocals made it incredibly powerful and moving.  The mood of the song was always tinged with sadness.  That feeling is greatly magnified when you listen to it today knowing that Lake is no longer with us.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

THE BUSINESS “Blind Justice” (1983)

Thrash metal, speed metal and a lot of metal genres would have sounded very different if it weren’t for the influences of punk rock and hardcore.  One of the pioneers of Oi! (a subgenre of the punk movement) was a band formed in 1979 in London.  The Business was fronted by Micky Fitz.  Their songs were loud, political and chaotic.  Throughout the years, the band continued to record and tour until the death of Fitz on December 1, 2016.  The punk, hardcore, and Oi! movement has lost an innovator and a pioneer in the genre.

 

MEGADETH “Hangar 18” (1990)

Another great musician we lost in 2016 was Megadeth’s Nick Menza.  As a member of the band from 1990 to 1997, Menza recorded four albums with Megadeth, and was one of the best drummers in the band’s history.  His unique playing style helped to shape and complement Dave Mustaine’s songwriting.  He hit hard, was technical when he needed to be, and in a way, formed the image of a thrash metal drummer.  I have played along with Menza’s drum tracks for 26 years; he was a big influence in my own drumming.  The world will miss one of the best metal drummers in history.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

Y&T – “Mean Streak” (1985)

Leonard Haze was the original drummer for Y&T, from 1972-86, and again from 2002-2006. He also contributed vocals (both lead and backing) on some songs, and co-wrote some of the band’s biggest hits.  He suffered in his later years from COPD.  Still, he managed to stay active on the live music scene with his band Hazel Experience.  Haze took the stage with his old bandmates in Y&T in both 2015 and 2016 when their tour passed through San Francisco.  Hazel Experience had actually been scheduled to open for Y&T when he died.

This talented man co-wrote and performed on “Black Tiger,” “Hurricane,” “Forever,” “Rescue Me,” “Dirty Girl,” and perhaps the band’s biggest hit, this one – the title track from their fifth studio album.

 

BLUE OYSTER CULT – “Flaming Telepaths” (1974)

Rock producer Sandy Pearlman helped to found the band Blue Oyster Cult, and contributed heavily to many of their albums with both production and lyrics.  He also worked with The Clash and many other bands, garnering 17 platinum and gold records.  He was a poet, and on this song, as well as several others from Blue Oyster Cult’s third studio album, Secret Treaties, verses come to life from his 1967 collection of poems, “The Soft Doctrine of the Immaginos.”

 

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 12/22/16

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 12/22/16

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)

THE KINKS – “Father Christmas” (1978)

Classic Christmas songs help put many people in the holiday spirit, but those songs have never done much for me.  For rock fans, original Christmas songs are few and far between, but one that has been a personal favorite for nearly four decades is “Father Christmas” by The Kinks.  I still remember the label on the 45 single that I bought at the local record store.  I realize that the last statement probably seems like a foreign language to our younger readers, but it will be nostalgic for Gen Xers.  Christmas songs tend to be sugary sweet with sentiment, which makes this classic by The Kinks so memorable.  It’s raw, edgy and a bit angry, but it makes me smile when I hear it, and helps me feel the spirit of the season.

 

GREG LAKE – “I Believe In Father Christmas” (1974)

Another song that has been a mainstay in my life every Christmas season is Greg Lake’s “I Believe In Father Christmas.”  Although the song came out in 1974, I didn’t discover it until I saw the video on MTV in the early ‘80s.  There has always been a touch of bittersweet melancholy when listening to this song, but it is magnified this year as the holiday season comes on the heels of Lake’s passing.  Given the tremendous losses that rock fans have endured this year (including that of Lake’s bandmate, Keith Emerson), it almost seems fitting that this loss came at the time of year when Lake is always top of mind.  “I Believe In Father Christmas” will remain a part of my annual holiday playlist for years to come.

Next week, on the final Hard Rock Music Time Machine of the year, I will pay tribute to Greg Lake, and the other members of the HRD Team will be paying tribute to other musicians who passed away during 2016.
 

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

TYPE-O NEGATIVE “Red Water (Christmas Mourning) (1996)

Who says there is no Christmas spirit in metal?  Take a listen to the “Drab Four’s” gloomy take on despair and sadness in “Red Water (Christmas Mourning)” from their album October Rust.  Peter Steele sadly moans and laments about his ghosts of Christmas past.  Even his lyrics will make you feel the sadness that he wails about…“My table’s been set for but seven, just last year I dined with eleven.”  One of the best Type-O-Negative songs ever written, this song sums up the band as a whole…dark and dreary.  Even though I’m sure this song wasn’t meant to be a Christmas song, it amplifies the depressed thoughts and feelings of the band as a whole.

 

KING DIAMOND – “No Presents For Christmas” (1985)

One of the main staples of a heavy metal Christmas party is this song.  Cheesy at best, the jingle bells melody transforms to a head-banging, double-bass drumming, speed-riffing good time.  The song was accidentally written when the band was working on a new tune, and decided that it sounded too much like a Christmas song.  So what’s a heavy metal band to do but write a Christmas song?  Mikkey Dee shows his drumming skills on this tune, which has cemented him as one of the best drummers in the genre.  Couple that with Andy LaRocque’s soloing speed and King’s screeching falsettos and you have a classic King Diamond staple.
 

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA – “Christmas Jam” (2004)

It’s just not Christmas without the blazing guitars and soaring symphonies of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.  Over the past twenty years they have become a mainstay of the season, producing melodies that we expect to hear this time of year, with harmonies and orchestrations that sweep us away.  They also put on the greatest light show and theatrics anywhere at their annual concerts.  They get a little funky here on this holiday favorite.

 

STRYPER – “Winter Wonderland” (2007)

In 2007, several metal and rock bands contributed their takes on various holiday classics for a compilation album called Monster Ballads Xmas.  Michael Sweet and Stryper’s rendition of this one was so powerful that here they’re actually closing a show with it.  They sound amazing.  They’re having a ton of fun with it, and the audience is rocking out with them.

Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 12/15/16

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Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 12/15/16

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)

JUDAS PRIEST – “United”  (1980)

After attending the Epiphone Revolver Music Awards this week (read full story), and being immersed in an environment of like-minded people, it took me back to a time when life was all about music, not politics.  Living in the U.S. these days, the “U” in the abbreviation has felt like something of a misnomer, as we are more divided than ever.  But for one night, all of the troubles of the world disappeared, and I truly felt like I was a part of one big group.  Metal has a way of bringing people together, and no one does it better than Rob Halford and company, with anthems like “United” that feel like much more than a song.  It’s more like a rallying cry to their throngs of fans.  The song is far from the most popular off of 1980’s British Steel, but it’s one of the most powerful.

 

JUDAS PRIEST – “Take On The World” (1978)

Judas Priest fans around the world know their 1978 release as Killing Machine.  In the U.S., the album was released as Hell Bent For Leather.  The title was changed in the U.S. because record company executives didn’t like the “murderous implications” of the title used outside of the country.  Regardless of where you live, or what you call the album, the one thing that is consistent for everyone is that it is a Priest classic.  “Take On The World” is another us-against-the-world anthem from these heavy metal legends that preaches the power of unity.

 

 

 ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout

GOJIRA – “Liquid Fire” (2012)

One of the best metal bands to have come out this past decade is France’s Gojira.  This band is so unique, it’s hard to fit them into a category.  Call them progressive metal or groove metal, but their style stands apart from the masses.  “Liquid Fire” is one of these songs that shoves the emotion of the song into your gut when you listen to it, with nihilistic lyrics that make the listener mourn for the destruction of our world.  From their fifth studio album, L’Enfant Sauvage, “Liquid Fire” is a masterpiece of a song with both technical uniqueness and social commentary.

 

TIAMAT – “Cain” (2003)

One of the best goth metal bands around is Sweden’s Tiamat.  Formed in 1987, the band’s albums have ranged in genre from death metal to gothic rock.  Johan Edlund’s vocals change with the style of the song, from a death metal growl to low whispers building to a crescendo of melodic vocals.  Their music sets the mood for any quiet, moonless night.  It’s dreamy at times, and oftentimes the keyboards give their songs a hypnotic ambiance.  Although I prefer their earlier works (when they were more of a death band), their slowed-down goth rock works for them too.  Fans of bands like Sisters of Mercy would enjoy Tiamat.

 

 

ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout

YNGWIE MALMSTEEN – “Don’t Let It End” (1985)

Guitar virtuoso Yngwie Malmsteen took the metal world by storm in 1984 with his debut album, Rising Force.  He followed it up a year later with another masterful entry into the genre with Marching Out.  This song nicely highlights Yngwie’s blistering riffs and Jeff Scott Solo’s soaring range on vocals as well.

 

IMPELLITTERI – “Stand in Line” (1988)

When forming the band Impellitteri, guitar virtuoso Chris Impelliteri originally recruited Rob Rock for vocals.  They released an EP together, but the band’s first full album was 1988’s Stand In Line, featuring Graham Bonnett (Rainbow, MSG, Alcatrazz) on vocals.  Since then, both singers have appeared on different albums, with Rock as the current singer over the past ten years.  Here on the title track to the band’s first full-length album, Bonnett and Impellitteri work some magic together, playing off each other beautifully.  Also, check out their remake of Rainbow’s “Since You Been Gone.”