Stream Dream: Black Sabbath-Live Evil (1983)

Well today a couple of Sabbath reissues drop those being “Heaven And Hell” and “The Mob Rules”. I thought maybe it would be fun to step back in the time machine with you all…

It was a fellow student at high school back in early 83 who had the vinyl copy of  “Live Evil” by Black Sabbath as it ended up being the farewell album for vocalist Ronnie James Dio and his sidekick drummer Vinny Appice.

Who knew that back in 82?

I sure as hell didn’t..

Anyways that fellow’s name I went to school with was Dave Kumas (M.IA) and he loved, and I mean loved Sabbath. Ozzy era, Dave had all the records. Dio era of Sabbath, Dave had the two Ronnie fronted Sabbath albums at the time (“Heaven and Hell”,”Mob Rules”)

I had one Sabbath album back in 82 and that was “Mob Rules”. I had just gotten for Christmas 1982, Ozzy’s  “Speak of the Devil”. Needless to say I was way behind the times in Sabbath but Dave displayed his loyalty and passion for Sabbath so I respected that as I had some catching up to do.

“Live Evil” in 83 was me making an attempt at catching up on Sabbath as Ronnie,Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Vinny Appice released this double live album recorded on the Mob Rules Tour (Seattle, San Antonio and Dallas were the chosen spots) back in 81-82.

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. E5150 (2:21)
2. Neon Knights (4:36)
3. N.I.B. (5:09)
4. Children of the Sea (6:08)
5. Voodoo (6:07)
6. Black Sabbath (8:39)
7. War Pigs (9:19)
8. Iron Man (7:29)
9. The Mob Rules (4:10)
10. Heaven & Hell (12:04)
11. The Sign of the Southern Cross/Heaven & Hell (Continued) (7:15)
12. Paranoid (3:46)
13. Children of the Grave (5:25)
14. Fluff (0:59)

Total Time 83:27

Line-up / Musicians

Tony Iommi / Lead Guitar
 Geezer Butler / Bass
 Ronnie James Dio / Vocals
 Vinny Appice / Drums
Geoff Nicholls / Keyboards

Looking at this list of songs now and listening to it in 2021 I realized that Ronnie’s interpretations of the Ozzy led material on this album was the first time I heard these tracks musically done by the two guys that created the riffs. (Iommi and Butler) whereas listening to Speak of the Devil by Ozzy I first heard those Sabbath tracks by the vocalist that originally sang on them.

Understand that?

The Ronnie Sabbath material on here like from “Heaven and Hell” and the followup “The Mob Rules” are stellar. Sure, Dio and Appice after quitting accused Iommi and Butler of tweaking the studio dials when they weren’t around as there was a ton of cocaine about so maybe someone was Paranoid (see what I just  did there?).

Looking back Dio does justice to Ozzy songs and there is Ronnie shouting Geezer Butler and and were off and running into “N.I.B”.

Iommi and his guitar tone is stellar. Sounding heavy yet clear while Appice drives the train forward with his drumming.

The band sounds loud on this and the audience is mixed quietly. lol. Yet still this is a great live album that for some reason is kinda forgotten about.

So however much dicking about in the studio that was or wasn’t done on “Live Evil” in the end doesn’t really matter to me as if Sabbath was indeed coked up then so be it.

Why isn’t Snowblind on here then? 

I think I need to track this one down on vinyl at some point or perhaps now that the reissues of “Heaven and Hell” and “The Mob Rules” have surfaced perhaps Iommi and Butler may rerelease “Live Evil” which to me they should.

dEke’s Stream-A-Rater: 8.5/10

 

March 3 – The Northern Pikes Began To Soar — A Sound Day

Check out this great interview done by my blog pal Dave who chats with Jay Semko from the Northern Pikes. Jay gives great insight on what’s it like for a Canadian Bands to break into the American Market… Give the link a click and a read…

> PART 2 OF OUR INTERVIEW WITH JAY SEMKO OF THE NORTHERN PIKES. By late 1990 when Snow In June was certified platinum in Canada, to some it seemed like the Northern Pikes were a bit of an overnight sensation. Of course, that was far from the truth. By then they’d […]

March 3 – The Northern Pikes Began To Soar — A Sound Daya

Aerosmith: Brand New Song & Dance (1986)

Snowman asked…I delivered…

Aerosmith was still in party mode back in the mid 80’s  when they rolled into Worcester, Massachusetts on March 12th 1986 and broadcast nationally over FM radio airwaves this live show while they were promoting the stellar “Done With Mirrors” release from a year before.

Guess the word on the street at the time was Aero was going to take this show and release it themselves as a followup to the mighty “Live Bootleg” that came out 8 years earlier(1978).

That concept was shelved of course but thanks to “Back On Black Records” who bring this show to life on this killer double live album all these years later that I bought off Amazon last summer for $35!

Look at that setlist! Love the fact that “Done With Mirrors” is featured predominately on this set and Tyler and Crew were not just focused on one or two tracks from it and thats it…

Five tracks from DWM’s are featured (“My Fist,Your Face”, “Shela”, “She’s On Fire”, “The Hop” and “Let The Music Do The Talking”) that have that sleazy, sizzle of the guitars of Joe Perry and Mr. Whitford cranked throughout this show.I have to add the sound of this “boot’ is perfect. Basically sounds like a professional release.

Some older “Gems” as I call them are played as opener “Back In The Saddle” followed by “Same Old Song And Dance” set the party ablaze with Tyler in fine form vocally.

Speaking of which, for all the mess that these guys were in they could clean up (ahem) I guess when the chips were on the line as this show proves. 

Aero had there shit together this night….

The real clincher on this set is the fact that “No Surprise” from 79’s “Night In The Ruts” record is featured as well. No Surprise has some to Tylers best lyrics ever and why the band has shelved this song since 86 is beyond me as it is one of their best.

“A Brand New Song And Dance” was recorded when the chips were down as Aero wasn’t selling much yet they still proved that when push came to shove they could pull it together and still bring it live.

This albums proves it…

You have to hand it to Back on Black Records who make this album look legit with the double gatefold sleeve as well as one record is white while the other is black. Going that extra mile is pretty cool.

Krokus: Adios Amigos Live @ Wacken (2021)

Some folks may have forgotten or may not know this but those fun loving Swiss dudes known as “Krokus” had a  decent run in the 80’s of scoring three consecutive Gold Albums in both Canada and the United States.

Those three albums “One Vice At A Time(82)”, “Headhunter(83)” and “The Blitz(84)” solidified some decent momentum for the band which unfortunately went sideways when “Change of Address(86)” came out and no one took notice as Krokus went wham bam shouldn’t have gone too glam and the end result was we all changed addresses on Krokus and moved on.

After giving them another shot with 88’s “Heart Attack” I was off the Krokus express. 

As the years passed into decades I have seen these guys putting out product and flying the Krokus Brand once again. 

Good on them I say..

So back in 2019 Krokus decided to call it a career and while there farewell tour is somewhat on hold like countless others they went ahead and released a final live album that they recorded in Germany at the Wacken Festival.

Since I make no bones about loving live albums I wanted to give this one a spin and I can tell you all that…

I’m surprised that these guys pulled off a pretty damn fine live album.

What! Really?

First of all Krokus is now a six piece with five of the guys being in the band at various times during the roaring 80s so for me there is lots of legitimacy in doing that.

Marc Storace of course is the vocalist but along for the ride are three guitarists that being Mark Kohler, Fernando Von Arb and Mandy Meyer. Slapping Da Bass is Chris Von Rohr and along on drums in what seems like the Spinal Tap scenario in Krokus is Flavio Mezzodi.

“Adios Amigos Live @ Wacken” track listing:

01. Headhunter
02. Long Stick Goes Boom
03. American Woman
04. Hellraiser

05. Winning Man
06. Hoodoo Woman
07. Fire
08. Bedside Radio
09. Rockin’ in The Free World (Neil Young cover)
10. Eat The Rich
11. Easy Rocker
12. Heatstrokes
13. Drumdog On The Loose
14. Quinn The Eskimo (Bob Dylan cover)

14 tracks and right out of the gate Krokus lift off with “Headhunter” and they are not fooling around as they get right down to business. Considering this is the final tour I’m surprised that more originals are not on here but instead covers and thats not a knock on the songwriting on these guys as they could have easily added a couple off” The Blitz” (which is completely ignored) but whatever the case hearing “American Woman” I’m sure makes Randy and Burton happy as they can cash their senior cheques on the royalties this song has made them over the years.

Even during “Long Stick Goes Boom” the tune veers off course for a few bars of The WHO’s “Pinball Wizard”. 

“Eat The Rich” on here is an absolute monster of a track..

Maybe the reason for the covers is these guys are just having fun. Who knows for sure but they really are heavy on this album which with three guitarists they should be plus that Flavio guy on the skins propels the Krokus Bus at full speed.

Nice to see the inclusion of “Heatstrokes” and “Bedside Radio” from the debut North American release 41 years ago (Metal Rendezvous) getting a workout. Seems like yesterday that my pal Muc picked this album up! Even “Winning Man” is played and that was from “Hardware” which is also going back. 

The performances here are solid and Storace’s vocals have held intact but of course they have aged which is expected but he nails it really and thats all you can ask for at the end of the day is that Krokus nailed it.

dEke’s Stream-A-Rater-Rating……8/10

 

                                                                                            

 

 

Impact Albums- Aerosmith:Draw The Line (1977)

 

It was early 1981 when my Dad handed me a copy of Aerosmith’s “Draw The Line” album.

Now as it turns out my Father’s friend Ken(RIP) gave it to my him to pass onto me as Ken did not dig Aerosmith but he knew me being 13 years young  I would likey.

Ken you were right and thanks for the Aero introduction!

Once I heard this album the second Aero album I ended up purchasing in the summer of 81 was the immortal double “Live Bootleg”.

I was used to cover drawn albums as KISS were the leaders in that department back than yet here comes Aerosmith with a cool band drawing on the cover and they call it “Draw The Line”

Cool play on words fellas!

As a 13-year-old at the time I thought Aero was into art class but a little later on realized Aero was into the seedier side of things when you skip art class.

So here we are 40 years down the line and it was time to upgrade from that worn out copy of “Draw The Line” and a RSD title to boot that I bought at Comix Plus here in Tbay that sells some sealed and mostly used records.

Let’s check on Joe Perry,Steve Tyler,Joey Kramer, Tom Hamilton and Brad Whitford and see how they shaped some musical landscapes for a one young dEker!

DRAW THE LINE- What an intro to Aerosmith with this tune. Holy Crap here comes Joe navigating some serious slide guitar and his side kick Steve belting out the cowboy song! “Heads I win Tails You lose” yelps Tyler. You win Steve as  he basically throws up a tonsil in that crazy part of the song you all know it that part that goes “Checkmate don’t be late, take another pull, that’s right impossible” What a rip of an opening song!

I WANNA KNOW WHY- This is a great song, some cool keyboards rock this song along just fine. Being this is my first Aero album and so far so good! If the stories are true that they were totally blasted throughout the recording of this album. Keep blasting!

CRITICAL MASS-The whole band shifts a tempo down from the first two numbers and they still rock it with Tyler telling his story about the seedier side of living kinda like spaced out actually yeah man Tyler’s tripping into who knows where but he makes tripping seem real cool. “Tell me how ya recover from the time in space as it takes you away.” That’s what Steven sings….honestly.

GET IT UP-Perry kick’s  out with some cool slide guitar once again. Steve shoots into town in a police car and your daddy said he took it a little too far! Cool tune. Off the walls is Aero as there is no sobriety in sight.

BRIGHT LIGHT FRIGHT- Joe takes the lead vocal on this one and it’s a steamer of a track. Throw in some cool sax and some wicked leads and this is Joe doin solo time so Steve can ramp it up into the next track!

KINGS AND QUEENS- Wow, this is epic Aerosmith. Steve talks about the “Kings And Queens and Guillotine’s taking lives denied”. Basically Steve is singing about greed in 1877 or perhaps 1977 with all their handlers around. That’s my spin on it and for a band as they say being out of it. They pull one out of the fire here that’s for sure.

THE HAND THAT FEEDS-“Doctor,Doctor,Doctor” Steve shouts. Is someone calling a code on Aeros behalf? I have to say though I think by this point they were starting to lose a bit of creative gas but then the endless lifestyle of craziness may be catching up. Still they pull this one out. Tom and Joey set the rhythm pace.

SIGHT FOR SORE EYES- I prefer the live version on Live Bootleg. This version is kinda a  slow tempo compared to the very amped up live deal. Still it’s neat to hear it In Its original state.

MILK COW BLUES- This is a cover tune jammer that ends the album and I really think Aero ran out of steam by this point so a cover tune was needed to push the album to the 35 minute mark. I’m sure the record company was freaking on them for lack of material but I really don’t think the Smith boys cared too much by this point!

 

Damon Johnson & The Get Ready: Battle Lessons (2021)

Damon Johnson is one talented cat and around these halls known as Arena Rock Thunder Bay, Johnson is respected for the fact that his self titled “Brother Cane” release from 1993 is one of those full album ‘Gems’.

“Brother Cane” came out when Cobain and his tattered up Cardigan were ruling the charts that year.

 Johnson on “Brother Cane” did what he does best and that’s fusing his own style of writing hard blues rock and drove home that point in spades on that release.

Now here we are in 2021 and Damon is back in a power trio format (known as the Get Ready) kicking down the doors on this 9 song 33 minute of an ass kicker release. 

  1. Battle Lessons
  2. Can’t Clap Any Louder
  3. Talk Yourself Into Everything
  4. Shadow Country
  5. Let The Healing Begin
  6. Brace For Impact
  7. Lightning Bolt
  8. Love Is All You Left Behind
  9. Casual Beast

Adding to the fun Damon brought aboard for this project producer Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Rush) so this is a big deal release that what I have been reading and watching Johnson has done this whole release himself in house. In house meaning literally recording “Battle Lessons” and shipping out all the copies himself from the house he lives in!

A one man do it yourself operation with he help of his family as well I might add.

The tunes that make up “Battle Lessons” are rock. No following trends just these fella’s getting down to  doing there own thing.

 Speaking of fella’s, Johnson has added two serious side kicks with him on here that being drummer Jarred Pope(Tom Keifer) and bassist Robbie Harrington(Steve Vai.) who are serious players in their own right and back the Bossman with some tight serious chops of there own.

All of these tracks stand up on their own. They rock. Period. “Love Is All You Left Behind” albeit being an acoustic ballad actually fits the vibe here which surprised me as  the other eight songs on here rock. It’s neat to hear Damon’s sound stripped down to the core.

But I tell ya there are two mindblower tracks that are beyond epic and thats “Shadow Country” and “Let The Healing Begin” which has the power trio flexing some serious chops amongst the time changes and power chords. Freaking classic comes to mind. 

Cheers to “Johnson and the Get Ready” who will definitely make you Get Up and take some notice on “Battle Lessons”

dEke’s Stream-A-Rater-Rating: 9/10

Stream Dream: Northern Pikes- Gig (1993)

What a great title for a live album called simply “gig”

Northern Pikes did some good business in there homeland Canada from 1985 until the release of “gig” in 1993 when they decided to call it day at the time.

The Pikes had a steady stream of Gold and Platinum records and plenty of video and radio play especially when the Snow In June album that was released in 1990.

But by 1993 even though there latest release at the time “Neptune” went Gold they decided to to move on but before that happened the Pikes decided to record a couple of shows (Toronto and Montreal) and put out a fitting (which became a farewell for a while) live capsule.

The Pikes to me are a good time band that wrote good time tunes and this album’s proves that. 

Northern Pikes had their own vibe musically as they weren’t following any trends but what they had was good musical chops and what my pal Max from Nashville says about acts like these as they are ‘Power Pop’.

Power Pop is a great call as there are three lead singers in this band. Bassist Jay Semko,  Lead Guitarist Bryan Potvin and Guitarist Merl Bryck all had great lead vocal capabilities. Rounding out the band on drums is Don Schmid.

Track listing

  1. “The Way You Are” (from the album Neptune, 1992) – 6:39
  2. “Girl With a Problem” (from the album Snow in June, 1990) – 4:08
  3. “Believe” (from the album Neptune, 1992) – 4:26
  4. “Unimportant” (from the album Snow in June, 1990) – 3:18
  5. “Things I Do for Money” (from the album Big Blue Sky, 1987) – 5:06
  6. “Teenland” (from the album Big Blue Sky, 1987) – 7:37
  7. “Worlds Away” (from the album Neptune, 1992) – 4:54
  8. “Hopes Go Astray” (from the album Secrets of the Alibi, 1988) – 5:00
  9. “Why Cry” (from the album Neptune, 1992) – 5:09
  10. “Dancing in a Dance Club” (from the album Big Blue Sky, 1987) – 6:36
  11. “She Ain’t Pretty” (from the album Snow in June, 1990) – 3:40
  12. “Everything” (from the album Neptune, 1992) – 3:28
  13. “Twister” (from the album Neptune, 1992) – 3:30

Lot’s of great tracks and us Canucks out there reading this know the tunes by those days of yesteryear when MuchMusic played videos. (what a concept!)

 

I can tell you all that three of my favourite tracks are on here one of which is Hopes Gone Astray with that fantastic opening paragraph of..

“Just write a letter and mail it to yourself
Read it out loud but to no one else
Pick your pocket a measure of time
And never leave these memories behind”

A great song that builds and builds…

Believe is such a killer song as well and I hate to use the term ballad but the lyrics drip of heartache…

“I can’t believe it’s dwindled away
To a forced “hello. ya I’ll see you someday”

Wow man that’s deep.

Bryan Potvin delivers a killer vocal and guitar action on this one as his voice blends perfectly on the harmonies provided by  Jay Semko and Merl Bryck. 

Course the real big hit on here “She Ain’t Pretty” is definitely a master class in Power Pop. What a great driving tune of Power Pop! (yup I used that term  again). 

She Ain’t Pretty was even getting into the U.S Singles Charts back in 1990 (it reached #86) than disaster happened.

I recently listened to an interview with Semko and he talked openly about having a great A&R guy in the States named Bobby Brooks who championed the band and got them on huge support slot opening for Robert Palmer and bunch of other dates in the States. Just as the Pikes we’re about to get their break in the U.S, Brooks was killed along in a helicopter crash that also took the life of Stevie Ray Vaughn.

Semko said Brooks passing was huge loss to the band both personally and professionally and the momentum they had built up and the person that replaced Brooks did what they could but as Semko said it was never the same.

I caught the Pikes when they tolled into town a few years back and they still delivered a killer live show jammed with the  hits and these cats still had the chops to bring it live. (Bryck though  remaining friendly with the band packed it and has been replaced by Kevin Kane)

Lots of  great rock…

dEke’s Stream A Rater Rating….8.5/10

WEEZER: THE BLUE ALBUM (1994)

 

I call this one “The Blue Album” even though that’s not the original title but for some reason I like that title so “The Blue Album” it is!

1994 was a weird year for us old school rockers that survived the 80s intact. 

Lot’s of rock was still coming out of course but for me perosnllya I drifted always back to what I would consider the classics like Maiden,Priest, AC/DC, RUSH, VH and others. You get the gist of it right?

Sure some bands that came out of the whole Tattered Cobain Cardigan Clubhouse caught my ear like Nirvana (some stuff) STP (damn good band), Soundgarden ( Cornell what a vocalist), Pearl Jam (don’t mind em) but at time’s there would come an album when I would least expect it and BAM!

Weezer “The Blue Album” is that record…

Expertly produced by the Great Late Ric Ocasek there are signs throughout this album that those fun quirky elements of The Cars seep into the grooves of this record.

“The Blue Album” is stuffed with 37 minutes of Weez-Rock!

MY NAME IS JONAS-Some cool guitar starts off “Jonas” and Rivers Cuomo lead singer and guitarist kicks off the album with a real great hard rock little ditty. I just love straight ahead simple hard rock nuggets and this is one of them.

NO ONE ELSE-Oh yeah this could have been a Cars track as it’s so damn catchy and the chorus just flat out takes the cake. I can totally hear the Ocasek Cars Influence on this tune. Great rocker and this song still makes me feel, ahhh quirky.  I do have to add that Cuomo has a real cool rock vibe voice, just laid back but it works!

THE WORLD HAS TURNED AND LEFT ME THERE- We can all relate to this title! The drums, fuzz guitar and some acoustic lead the charge.  Cool tempo and Weezer just keeps the momentum going….no Weezin here folks!

BUDDY HOLLY- Huge video and man props to the creative genius to whose  idea it was to scoop the whole Happy Days TV vibe of the video.  The song itself is a well crafted as I love the middle part where it goes like “Bang bang a knock on the door” I also dig the little quirky blasts of synth after every couple of verses! Good on Weezer being original with song and video.

UNDONE(THE SWEATER SONG)-Drums and acoustic guitar kick off this mid tempo rocker. Rivers Cuomo has a real knack for writing catchy hooks  and after the first chorus it’s like the  bummed out guy talks to a girl…”if you want to destroy my sweater” River sings basically if you want to destroy my fucking heart is how I hear it and another great catchy chorus.

SURF WAX AMERICA-Fast off time tempo. Cool sonic’s on this tune especially the middle section when the drums go a little cuckoo. But in a cool kind of cuckoo way.

SAY IT AIN’T SO- Super chill guitar and vocal until the chorus and the boys ramp it up. Nice arrangement for this song with some real snazzy picking and strumming….

IN MY GARAGE-Cool acoustic and harmonica start off “In My Garage” This is my fav tune on the Weezer album. I mean do these lyrics get any better than…

“I got posters on my wall, my favourite rock group KISS, I got Ace Frehley ,I got Peter Criss waiting for me yes I do!”

 

I mean think back to 1994 for a second as Criss and Frehley were no where to be found in society but River’s name drops em. Stanley/Simmons were probably sulking somewhere in there mansions in the Hollywood Hills at the vocal snub! The guitar solo on this song is wickedly good as I love the heavy fuzz sound on this  song and record.

HOLIDAY-This song is Weezer taking a well deserved Holiday that gets out of the gate with a ton of distorted kinda strumming. The middle part is cool with a little bass some snappin of the fingers and here comes some more cool guitar feedback.

ONLY IN DREAMS-Bass is on tap for the start and here comes some acoustic guitar followed by some nice clean electric guitar. The song ramps up in the chorus and we’re off ! Great way to end this album. Weezer just jam it out, shifting gears in the style as the song goes.

I picked this up last summer at our local Sunrise Shop as the price was right and when I got home that day I shot Mr Geoff a message telling him Say It Ain’t So but I finally got this one on vinyl!

Check out Geoff’s Great stuff below…

https://1001albumsin10years.wordpress.com

Black N’ Blue: Without Love (1985)

Crazy to think that this is my first used vinyl purchase in a year. It didn’t help the cause that a local business that sold used vinyl closed up before the world took a shit and once all that went down there was only two options.

Sunrise Records (a national chain)  and Amazon (with free shipping)

But thanks to my pal Muc who posted a link to local shop Comix Plus that was showing off the stock that they have accumulated in used vinyl I was intrigued.

I checked it out and quickly seen two titles I wanted. Aerosmith “Draw The Line” and Black N’ Blue “Without Love”.

I grabbed them both. Nice to have a local option that we can support and thanks to the owner of Comix Plus, Gary who when I messaged him about the Aerosmith album “Draw The Line”(a sealed RSD copy) messaged me back that he had another copy of “Draw The Line” that was used and in VG condition that If I wanted I could get that one instead. I went with the sealed copy but I appreciate the fact that he could have had saved me some cash. 

Thanks Sir..

Black N’ Blue (from Portland Oregon) were on the up and up back in 1994 with the self titled debut that featured some pretty cool tracks like “Hold Onto 18”, “Chains Around Heaven”, “Autoblast” produced by Dieter Dierks (Scorpions)

By 1985 though the band headed to Vancouver B.C and hooked up with the late  great  Bruce Fairbairn, Bob Rock and Mike Fraser to record “Without Love”.

This is one fine damn hard rock melodic album. You know with the production team of Fairbairn, Rock and Fraze the sonics would be here throughout. 

Opening tune “Rocking On Heavens Door” is killer opening tune. Some great drumming by Pete Holmes drives this song with a catchy chorus. 

Using there Vancouver connections the band enlists Jim Vallance on a couple of co writes that being the title track “Without Love” and the single “Miss Mystery”.

Both are great songs but for my money the title track is the better of the two featuring one of those memorable Vallance choruses. 

Lead vocalist Jamie St James and Guitarist Tommy Thayer are the duo responsible for writing up the tunes on this album and in saying that made a pretty good songwriting team.

Actually listening to this album today the whole first side of  “Without Love” could have been released as singles as that was what Geffen Records probably wanted from the band. 

“Hits Boys, Hits” chirped the cigar smoking Geffen suits back then.

The second side is fairly decent as well. “Swing Time” leads off with a ton thats heavy on the drums and guitar featuring  a swing like pattern.

One of my favourite titles of this album is “Bombastic Plastic”. It’s more of that 80s drive of the guitar power chords to make you raise your fist and yell..

“BOMBASTIC PLASTIC!”

“We Got The Fire” features Mike Reno( Loverboy) guesting on backing vocals on a pretty uptempo little three minute ass kicker of a track.

The album ends with two songs the first being “Strange Things” and closing with “Two Wrongs (Don’t Make It Love)” which has has that slow like sleaze rock pace during the verses and ramps up during the chorus.

Now when I originally bought this back in 85 on vinyl Tbone was with me and he picked up the cassette copy of “Without Love” and look what the bonus track was tacked on the end of Side 2 on the tape is?

A recorded live cover tune of Aerosmith’s “Same Old Song And Dance”  featuring not only the Black N Blue guys but Spider (Streetheart), Matt Frenette (Loverboy) and Bob Rock(guitar) joining along. No artist or bands did this back in time that I know of.  Well here it is posted below..

Overall a pretty good rock album and when we have Mike Fraser back on the “LeBrain Train” in a few months I will hit him up on a few questions about recording this album.

The word is this was one of the albums Jon Bon Jovi heard the production and wanted Bruce Fairbairn to produce the next Jovi record which was? We all know the answer to that one..

Slippery When Wet!

Funny how this album did not go over big time as the songs, performance and production are there. But who can predict these things as Black N’ Blue gave it a shot.

With there next release they went with Gene Simmons at the dials on the “Nasty Nasty” album that Tbone had bought as well. I heard his copy and I will leave it at that.

If you are to seek out any Black N’ Blue give “Without Love”a shot. 

Good record…

 

 

 

Impact Album: The Cult-Sonic Temple (1989)

 

1989 rolls around and The Cult featuring Ian Astbury, Billy Duffy, and Jamie Stewart along with Bob Rock at the control center unleashed one of the best sounding hard rock albums that in 2021 still sounds supreme!

Crazy to think Sonic Temple is 32 years old. Where does the time fly?

Once again this past Christmas I was gifted with “Sonic Temple” on vinyl which is spread out nicely over two double records that even has some bonus material on them.

This album kicks serious ass from the get go. Opener “Sun King” kicks the party off and the sound is massive. Cheers to Bob Rock and Mike Fraser for dialling it in sonically  on this album.

“Fire Woman” has that great opening Duffy street rock riff and the song lifts off from there.  Astbury was in his element here as I can still visual him in the video for this track digging his heals in at becoming that Arena Rock Guy which he dug for a time I’m sure before not too long after he kinda didn’t dig it.

Maybe I’m wrong here but either way the song still sounds good today on local crap radio. 

“Sonic Temple” fuses some huge Zep like rock on tracks like “Soul Asylum” while others like “New York City” is one of those hard driving balls out rock tracks that will smack you you around like if Iggy Pop was doing the smacking! (See what I did there?). Mickey Curry from Bryan Adams band handled the drums on this record and keeps The Cult on track.

“Sweet Soul Sister” with that cool driving bass line courtesy of Jamie Stewart is another bonafide hit. How about that chorus and guitar solo from Billy Duffy.

With it being 1989 sure there would be a ballad included which is “Edie (Ciao Baby)”. For all the sap power ballads that we’re racing up the charts back than “Edie” was a different kind of tune one in which I like and maybe that is because of WolfChilds vocals or the fact that tune ramps up. 

The rest of this album is killer. It’s all a brilliantly written heavy rock record and what better way than to end the sonic assault than all us of hoping on the “Medicine Train”!

ShotGun!

Thats the great thing about Duffy/Astbury and Stewart back than as they didn’t follow the cheese rock formula. Instead they forged their own path sonically and this album delivers that in spades.

Check out Mike Lebrain on Youtube as a few weeks back we chatted with Mike Fraser who told us some great stories about working with these guy’s in the studio.

 

 

 

Hard Rock Album and Concert Reviews! (Odd Book Review as well!)