Category Archives: STREAM DREAM

Cheap Trick: In Another World (2021)

So here we are in a Rock N Roll Lockdown so to speak yet those four fun dudes from RockFord Illinois keep on turning out some pretty decent rock considering that the Tricksters are now on their 20th album.

The recently released “In Another World” has Cheap Trick again putting out another solid release consisting of 12 originals and one cover tune that being John Lennon’s “Gimmie Some Truth”

The album is filled with typical Trick like rockers (The Summer Looks Good On You, Boys & Girls & Rock N Roll,Light Up The Fire) whereas at times the band shows its softer sensitive side (Passing Through, So It Goes).

Where the band really shines though is on the title track which is featured twice. One version is slow almost ballad like whereas the second version of Another World (reprise) is a full out rocker.

A real cool move if you ask me and a creative one at that.

Considering in 2021 when bands like KISS won’t release new music and rely on the same ol same ol you can’t say the same about Cheap Trick.

So if your a fan of loud guitars, drums and bass and a singer named Robin Zander who still sings brilliantly like its 1977 than this album is right in your wheelhouse.

dEke’s stream a rater rating…..8/10

Stream Dream: Triumph- Surveillance(1987)

Triumph was a big deal in the 80s as they had a great run of albums that I would call a Classic-3- Pack.

“Allied Forces(1981)-Never Surrender(1983)-Thunder7(1984)” were stellar releases from Toronto’s Rock N Roll Machine but than something happened in 1986 when “The Sport of Kings” came out.

Was it record company pressure or internal squabbling or maybe a bit of both but Triumph released from “Sport of Kings” the first single which was “Somebody’s Out There” which is a good Triumph song not a great Triumph song.

I bought “Sport of Kings” on cassette tape and it was a tough listen. It just did not click with me as the songs sounded light weight almost hard pop rock.  Tracks like “Tears In The Rain” and “Take A Stand” were good but “Just One Night” lacked anything. 

The Rock N Roll Machine’s tires had come off..

So when “Surveillance” was released in 87 I passed on buying it. Over the years though I thought about giving it another shot and basically that shot came now in 2021! 

Tracklist

1. Prolouge: Into the Forever (1:01)
2. Never Say Never (3:37)
3. Headed for Nowhere (6:09)
4. All the King’s Horses (1:47)
5. Carry on the Flame (5:16)
6. Let the Light (Shine on Me) (5:34)
7. Long Time Gone (5:12)
8. Rock You Down (3:58)
9. Prelude: The Waking Dream (1:13)
10. On and On (3:48)
11. All Over Again (3:59)
12. Running in the Night (3:48)

Total Time: 45:28

I remember MuchMusic back in the day playing the video for “Never Say Never” which I actually liked but I still didn’t take the Triumph bait.

The next track is I would say the best tune on here as “Headed For Nowhere” and its 6 plus minutes is a guitar smorgasbord between Rik Emmett and Steve Morse who trade off solos and what a duel. Who wins you ask! No one and we will call it a draw between Rik and Steve.

“Carry On The Flame” has JD Roberts and his new voice guest on this track reading the news. 

Triumph succeeds for the most part on the rock tracks of the album but as I listen to the album some of the songs begin to tail off and the drums sound weird. What happened here man?

Actually the last three songs have Triumph headed into Journey like rock. “On And On” is an attempt at getting on the radio and didn’t Gil learn his lesson with the balled like stuff like the “Just One Night” from “Sport of Kings”. Yet here is Gil crooning “All Over You” which has a mid tempo AOR vibe.

“Running In The Night” has Gil trying to have Triumph ramp up the pace after  the ball  was dropped in the end zone song “All Over You”.

Triumph in 87 was going for the comeback. It did not work as both the album and singles did not catch on. 

By 1988 Rik split for about two decades and it is good to see them getting along but back then in 87 Triumph blew an engine and never recovered.

deKe’s Stream-A-Rater- 5.5/10

 

 

 

 

Stream Dream: Ted Nugent- Nugent (1982)

 

Yup, this is a Ted review. No political views will be expressed here as it’s only rock n roll and I like it like it yes I do and want to keep it that way.

The Nuge was one of those guys who actually came to Thunder Bay albeit when his success was on that early 80’s decline when Ted showed up here in town in 1981 and once again in 1986.

Both shows I attended and both shows I left the arena deaf!

Ted when he rolled through town in 81 that was a show that I went  with my buddy Muc in tow.

Ted at the time was promoting the pretty decent “Intensities In 10 Cities” and if you ever listen to it it’s a barrage of some heavy crazy rock that even to this day I would consider one of Ted’s best but that may be as that record was my entry point into the world of Gonzo.

So even though me and Muc were too young to know that Ted’s career was hitting the shitter the fact that this guy came here was a mind blower.

So in the summer of 82 when I went to hang out with Muc he had gotten the new Nugent record called just that “Nugent”

There’s Ted on the cover in the dark wearing leather and looking rough. Unfortunately once I heard this album back in 82 it sounded umm lightweight compared the previous stuff I heard from the Whack master.

So did my feeling’s change in the last 39 years since I last heard Nugent?

Let’s get to it!

No, No, No 3:38
Bound And Gagged 4:32
Habitual Offender 3:06
Fightin’ Words 4:01
Good And Ready 4:20
Ebony 4:30
Don’t Push Me 2:33
Can’t Stop Me Now 2:34
We’re Gonna Rock Tonight 3:20
Tailgunner 7:00
Ted enlisted his usual cast of characters that being co lead vocalist Derek St Holmes and Bassist Dave Kishweny and on the drums is Carmine Appice of Rod ‘Do You Think I’m Sexy Fame” Stewart.
 
Ted is the producer of this album and for all the fire power that Ted had going on the “Intensities” album  that was a live one you would think with Ted manning the dials in the studio the guitars would be jacked but that is not the case here.
 
Opener “No, No, No” has St Holmes on vocals and you can tell this one is geared for radio actually a lot of this record is what I would call light weight rock. Weird as what was Ted thinking?  If you want political Ted well that happens on “Bound And Gagged” which if you ever seen the video you will know what I’m talking about.
 
Kinda of a wimpy record compared to the other bands putting out records in 1982. Iron Maiden/Judas Priest and KISS with the huge sounding “Creatures of the Night” all outclass the sonics on this record.
 
I will say that the last track “Tailgunnner” is the one tune that harkens back to Ted’s glory days of Gold and Platinum as Derek sings for his supper and Ted solo’s away like a lunatic but it’s the little to late theory as this album cannot be saved.
 
dEke’s Stream A Rater- 4/10

Thunder: All The Right Noises (2021)

It was at the Snowman’s site this past Friday that John under his new release Friday’s had posted  that Thunder had a new album out. I was intrigued as I had bought the first two Thunder albums which were “Backstreet Symphony”(1990) and “Laughing On Judgement Day”(1992) than Thunder like a few other acts skidded off of my radar shortly after.

This past Friday I was zipping around on the pages of Facebook and super producer/engineer Mike Fraser posted a picture congratulating the guys in Thunder on there latest release “All The Right Noises.”

Well, if Fraze has his name attached to this release you know the sonics are going to be dialled in.

So right away I added it to my Apple Library and I can tell you all that this is one fantastic rock album.

Quickly doing a bit of research Thunder has been sitting on this album since 2019 and now is the time when the world has been knocked on its ass for some good old fashioned stadium rock to come back.

Thunder covers all the bases over the course of this album’s 11 songs.

Last One Out Turn Off The Lights
Destruction
The Smoking Gun
Going To Sin City
Don’t Forget To Live Before You Die
I’ll Be The One
Young Man
You’re Gonna Be My Girl
St George’s Day
Force Of Nature
She’s A Millionairess

If there is an underlying theme in Thunder I think you could use the word ‘continuity’ as its 4/5th’s of the original band as well as having Fraser back mixing who originally did the first two Thunder releases  as well is a win win!

The songs are stellar and well written as Lead Singer Danny Bowes and Guitarist Luke Morley know that fine art of creating crafty arena rock without going down Cheesey-Ville Avenue.

The album opens with Drummer Harry James laying down some serious groove action on “Last One Out To Turn Off The Lights”. Bowes vocals are brilliant on this one and throughout as the man’s vocals have not aged whatsoever. 

“Destruction” is a slow heavy groove and tackles a subject which I’m aware of and that is dementia. 

 

I like those tunes that can take you on sonic journey one way and then shift gears in what I call ear candy. “Going To Sin City” is that track as Bassist Chris Childs slaps down at one point a tasty little bass run and the boys follow his lead.

“Don’t Forget To Live Before You Die” is stomp of a track featuring some distorted vocals and some huge bass and it’s a great catchy piece of rock.

Thunder does and I hate to use  the term ‘ballad’  but they do it with class. “I’ll Be The One” is that tune which compared to the other tracks on here has Thunder stepping off the gas but still packing a bit more punch than many of they’re contemporaries could do at this point in their careers.

Thunder has stepped up and delivered an album that harkens back to the golden days of classic rock (Zeppelin,Bad Company) yet they manage to retain they’re own style of hard rock that is found on the tracks of this album.

dEke’s Stream-A-Rater Rating: 9/10

If your a collector of such things (Hello Mikey Ladano!) you may be interested in the CD copy that has a ton of bonus studio tracks as well as 8 songs from this album played live in the studio!

Give the Snowman a follow here and stay on top of Fridays New Releases…

http://2loud2oldmusic.com

 

 

 

 

Black Sabbath: Mob Rules (1981)

Since I’m on a DIO kick at the moment and as Amazon has not made available the deluxe reissues of both Heaven and Hell and Mob Rules available on vinyl, streaming will have to do..

“Sam The Record Man” was a record store chain here in Canada that was quite popular in the 80’s.

Tbay had one store and every Saturday morning from 9-9:15 am you could buy the new release that week on vinyl for $4.99. I saw that cover of Mob Rules and I was hooked.

I have always dug this cover even now. I mean album artwork was huge with the Iron Maiden covers, Judas Priest’s “Screaming For Vengeance”  even AC/DC’s For Those About To Rock cover was simple yet effective statement that made you take notice and Salute!

Let’s check out what Geezer Butler, Ronnie James Dio, Tony Iommi and Vinny Appice had cooking in those grooves…

Sabbath 1982 and I finally hop aboard the Slippery  Sludge Slope  Known as Black Sabbath!

“TURN UP THE NIGHT”- New drum boy Appice goes to town on the drums and we’re off! No Sludgey Pudgey Sabbath here as this is Iommi, Geezer and Ronnie forging new sonics! Martin Birch of Iron Maiden production fame twiddled the knobs here and I love the gruffness of the sound not clear, not mucky, not 80’s sounding  Martin just makes it sound like a Metal record.  The chorus here is real catchy…

“VOODOO”-Iommi the King  of Doom Riffs plays a not so doom riff and the boys all join in and Dio and company write a real catchy tune! The verses are beyond solid and the chorus is awesome! 2 songs in and I’m in…

“SIGN OF THE SOUTHERN CROSS”-Some real nice chill Iommi electric with Dio’s voice that starts this tune and just like whoosh here comes Geezer and Vinny laying down some Sabbath Sludge and it’s so good.  Appice is a monster on the drums here no doubt! This song just goes and goes where it stops only Ozzy knows! Hahahaha! Seriously though this is to my ears old school Sabbath but packed with a little more punch. Dio man he sings it and he delivers ….

“E5150”-I think this  was written on the studio console with a huge bag of (Ahem!)  party treats as it’s just a bunch of twiddling Synthy sounds that goes Into the immortal …

“MOB RULES”-Gem,Gem,Gem! Iommi pastes this song from  the get go and once “My Cousin Vinny” pounds his drums and Ol Geezer slams his bass this is a lean mean Sabbath Sonic Rocket Machine. Ronnie once he joins in with his opening line of… 

“Close the city and tell the people that something’s coming to call, death and darkness are rushing forward to take a bite from the wall!”

Holy shit this is the real deal as Dio spews it I buy into it! It’s as easy as that. Iommi  tosses down a very memorable solo and it’s back to mega riffs,bombastic drums,wicked lead vocals and Yep I got a sonic hard on!  Dio sings it best “Your all fools…..Mob Rules!” Ditto that RJD!

“COUNTRY GIRL”-Country Girl! Track 6 and here’s the Sludgey Sabbath I have been waiting for! The song gets out of the gate with the boys slamming the song with cymbal smashes and doom riffs and Ronnie throws down a real wicked vocal. This is a dirty Sabbath which has Country Girl burning down the Farmhouse with the witches she met at Black Masses!

“SLIPPING AWAY”-Vinny totally rocks this song he pounds the tom toms into submission while Iommi and crew keep up to his pace and Dio brings a melodic approach to the vocals and melodies and that with Tony’s riffing they make a great one two punch! Geezer is baked as the crispy sun shines slaps the crap out of his Bass and Vinny he’s a beast, plain and simple.

“FALLING OFF THE EDGE OF THE WORLD”-7 plus minutes of classic 70s Sabbath.The song starts off at a snails pace and slowly builds and builds up and than of course the song shifts into overdrive close to halfway thru and 80s Sabbath does 70s Sabbath Justice. It doesn’t conform to the 3 minute Shake N Bake Cheese Rock of many! (I ain’t naming names but if your a reader here you  know the deal!) instead these are songs that have no rules attached to no formula! Hey were Sabbath!

“OVER AND OVER”-Doomie an Gloomie are on tap! Iommi powers down every last stitch of doom rock he’s got Into Over and Over! Sabbath saves the last two tracks of Mob Rules to my ears anyways that I thought the whole record was gonna sound like! Them Sabbath fellas fooled me.  Dio belts it out. Vinny slams it out. Geezer 4 strings it out. Iommi dooms it out and Over And Over knocks me out. You want heavy, this is and heavy not played a million miles a hour!

Now if you buy the Deluxe version of  “Mob Rules” on CD here is a show that may interest you. “Live At Portland Memorial Coliseum, Portland, OR, April 22, 1982″ which features pretty much the same track listing as the Live Evil which was to come at the conclusion of the Mob Rules Tour.

It’s a great live recording(listen to Geezer smack the Bass at the beginning of “N.I.B”) and being totally live the keyboards are jacked up which takes a few listens to get used to but once you get past that this is Sabbath Live. Period.

Lot’s of extra goodies stuffed on this…

Bonus Tracks
10.    “The Mob Rules” – Heavy Metal Soundtrack Version
11.    “Die Young” – Live B-Side Of “Mob Rules” 7” *
12.    “The Mob Rules” – New 2021 Mix **
Live At The Hammersmith Odeon London (31/12/81 – 2/1/82)
13.    “Country Girl”
14.    “Slipping Away” 
15.    “The Mob Rules”
16.    “Voodoo”
Live At Portland Memorial Coliseum, Portland, OR, April 22, 1982 
17.    Intro **
18.    “Neon Knights” **
 
Live At Portland Memorial Coliseum, Portland, OR, April 22, 1982
1.       “N.I.B.” **
2.       “Children Of The Sea” **
3.       “Voodoo” **
4.       “Black Sabbath” **
5.       “War Pigs” **
6.       Drum Solo **
7.       “Iron Man” **
8.       “The Mob Rules” **
9.       “Heaven And Hell” **
10.    Guitar Solo **
11.    “Sign Of The Southern Cross/Heaven And Hell” – Reprise **
12.    “Paranoid” **
13.    “Children Of The Grave” **

More value bang for the buck!

dEke’s Stream-A-Rater-Rating….10/10
 

 

 

 

 

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

 

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

 

                                                                                            

 

 

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

Stream Dream: Y&T- 10(1990)

Y&T is one of those bands that put out some stellar rock in the 80’s those being “Black Tiger”(1982), “Meanstreak”(1983) and “In Rock We Trust” (1984).

Also in the Y&T catalog to me have been a few misfires like 87s  “Contagious” (which had some good songs but also some so so songs) and “Down For The Count”(86) that I really could not wrap my head around but for my pal Tbone it ranks pretty high at his Rock Alter!

Speaking of Tbone this album cover is right in his wheelhouse! 

Cha-Ching!

After “Contagious” in 87 I checked out on Y&T but yet they soldiered on and in 1990 released the “10” album which you guessed was Y&T’s 10th album. That’s saying something really so you have to hand it to them.

So I seen somewhere out on the Facebook wasteland someone posted that it was the 30th Anniversary of Y&T “10” in 2020

What better way than to discover a 30 year old release 31 years later.

About that for a second…

Upon listening to 10’s  twelve songs it’s totally apparent that Lead Singer/Guitar Slinger Dave Meniketti was searching for that breakout album/single yet it never happened. It should have really as they came close back in 84 but for some reason success eluded them. No lack in effort though.

Listening to “10” it lacks that punch. Y&T on there previous albums would lead off with a good kicking track that would make you take notice like “Meanstreak” or “Open Fire.” Hell, even “Contagious” which was the title track from that album was a good opener. “Hard Times” is indeed hard times for Y&T as the song just does not do anything to lead off an album. No raising the fist and yelling here folks just a mid tempo whimper of a band than a kick in the ass!

Does it get better?

Some parts yes and some parts no. Tracks like “Lucy”, “City” and “Red Hot & Ready” (which should have been the opening track) are pretty good songs.

The problem is I’m sure Geffen Records by this point wanted a return on there investment.

There are tunes with the back in the day ‘Whoa Whoa’ vocals to get on the radio in songs like “Don’t Be Afraid of The Dark” and “Come In From The Rain”  whichhas these guys trying way too hard. 

Y&T was indeed down for the count on “10” as the band called it quits in 1991.

Most of the drums on “10” were played by Steve Smith(Journey) as drum guy Jimmy Degrasso and guitarist Joey Alves(RIP) had aborted ship by this point.

Give Dave credit though as he rebooted Y&T and they still sound good from the clips I have watched when they play the old stuff that is..

deKe’s Stream A Rater … 5/10

 

 

Stream Dream: Yngwie Malmsteen- Eclipse (1990)

Leave it to my younger brother Todd who back in the summer of 1990  at the young tender age of 13  was reading those Guitar Mags of the day while learning to play the six string himself and came home one day with Mr Yngwie J’s “Eclipse” on cassette tape!

Myself being about 10 years older(I was 23 years old at the time) I was glad on two fronts that Todd  bought this tape.

1- I seen the video of the single “Bedroom Eyes” which I thought was a brilliant tune.(I will explain why later)

2-The fact that I had gotten my brother both “Guitar World” and “Guitar For The Practicing Musician” subscriptions that previous Christmas  meant that Todd was reading the mags!

Good Boy.

I borrowed this tape off of Todd and it was a Walkman listen. I liked it in 1990 but for some crazy unexplained reason I never bought it. 

2021 let’s give it a stream and see what I think about it..

Yngwie Mach 90 assembled a full band of Swedes and off they went into the forest^ and recorded “Eclipse”.  The real  key of this album is Goran Edman who has a great voice and delivers an total American vibe as he can somehow wrap his vocals around the cranked Strat n Marshall sound of Malmsteen!

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Making Love (4:56)
2. Bedroom Eyes (4:02)
3. Save Our Love (5:24)
4. Motherless Child (4:13)
5. Devil in Disguise (6:11)
6. Judas (4:25)
7. What Do You Want (3:49)
8. Demon Driver (3:25)
9. Faultline (5:08)
10. See You in Hell (Don’t Be Late) (3:39)
11. Eclipse (3:46)

Total time 49:04

When streaming “Eclipse” it’s totally apparent that this album was geared for 1990 MTV.  Hard Rock plain and simple as that was what was being played back then.

Yngwie being the captain of the ship leads the charge with opening track “Making Love” which has Yngwie cooped up, trying his best to keep his fingers bellow 100 mph on his fretboard  by keeping his playing in check with the composition of the songs.

This style of rock must have driven him bonkers as he couldn’t unleash the fury. (see what I did there)

 For the most part that is the key and perhaps the reason I like this album as he is not doing all the guitar wanky wanky with the wang bar stuff. 

“Bedroom Eyes” is a killer track which should have driven the album up the charts as Edman is the perfect foil to Yngwie in the tune. Goran is awesome on this tune and how about that riff that leads right into the chorus. I’ll post the video below so you can see Yngwie J swinging his Strat, tossing his Strat and rubbing his arse on his Strat!

The fact that Malmsteen (who produced the album) was buying into the format of a rock album featuring rock songs is the reason I don’t mind it.

Sure the sound has that generic hard rock crystal clear production but this band had chops and could flex some cool muscle on rockers like “Judas”  and yes if your looking for Yngwie circa 1985 he does let loose on some stuff like “What Do You Want” and “See You In Hell” which as you can say old habits die hard.  

For the most part this is a good listen other than the usual go to move of a ballad back in 90 (“Save Our Love”) which does nothing for me but other than that “Eclipse” is a pretty decent listen.

deKe’s Stream A Rater- 7.5/10

^- Yngwie did not record this album in a forest I just thought it sounded funny to write and to see if you were paying attention.