Category Archives: Tbones/ Decade Of Decadence

These are all the shows that me & T attended in the 80s til present day!

ZZ TOP Live (October 7th 1990)

 

Crazy to think that as the years pass by so do some  fine musicians who as fans we have been able to have seen live in concert. Dusty Hill may have passed on but he’s certainly not forgotten!

Oct 7th 1990/ZZ TOP-COLIN JAMES- Winnipeg Arena

Me and my best friend TBone were pumped about seeing the two long beards and the moustache  guy from Texas.

I mean rewind seven years prior and Eliminator was all over print media as  the vids were all over tv and that continued right into ’85s Afterburner which too me was sides 3&4 to Eliminator!

So after a few yrs away here comes 1990 as well here comes ZZ Top along with  dEke And TBone to rock the show with the Texas Trio.

ZZ Top was plugging their latest opus “Recycler” except it wasn’t gonna be released  until after the tour started. Recycler hit the Record Shops on Oct. 16th ’90.

The “Recycler Word Tour” started October 2 ’90 in Vancouver and the show we were catching was the fifth show of the tour in the ‘Peg.   Gibbons, Hill and Beard were a serious concert draw as all seven shows of the Canadian Tour were sold out and in arenas. (10,000 plus at each show)

Colin James (the opener) is flying high on the Canuck charts on his current  “Sudden Stop” release. Colin puts on a good show plays the hits including Tbone’s favourite “Voodoo Thing” along with his current big hit “Just Came Back”.

Once Colin wrapped up his well received set from there it’s the waiting game until ZZ hits the stage.

I mean what kind of stage is behind that curtain that stretches across and around the stage? Props? Recycled Legs?? Or just a amps,drums and a light show?….well as it turns out..

The lights went out in the Winnipeg Arena and it’s  pitch black (cue Rock Move 101) and you see two headlights appear in front of the drums with the whole stage draped with a black curtain.

A chain link fence image appears on the curtain,the sound of a car revving and the revving gets louder and along with the motor getting louder you can hear the sounds of a woman getting louder(if u know what I mean) and then bam..curtain drops.

Below is the full show from T.O, four days after  we caught em in Winnipeg. The sound and picture is clear. If anything watch the first 5 minutes including  the conveyer belt! Better yet watch the whole dang thing!

There’s ZZ and they plow right into “Planet Of Women”. I tell ya man that  is one of the best intros I have seen any band take to a stage ever!

Beards drums were on the back of a flatbed and it was like they were playing In a recycled junkyard complete with TV screens and flashing women.

Such a cool setup especially not knowing beforehand what we were going to see.

Billy Gibbons live with that guitar tone was awesome. There are certain guitar players you need to hear in a live setting like of course EVH (if you had the chance), Alex Lifeson, Joe Perry, Slash,  David Gilmour, and of course Rev. Gibbons who has a sound n style all his own.

This was a great show. Glad I caught ’em when they were still doing the arenas.

Setlist: Planet of Women/ Sleeping Bag/ Tell It/ Waitin for the Bus/ Jesus Just Left Chicago/ Ten Foot Pole/ Gimme All Your Lovin /Concrete & Steel/ Manic Mechanic/ Heard It On The X /2000 Blues/ Blue Jean Blues /Just Got Paid /Lovething/ Got Me Under Pressure/ Techno-industrial instrumental/ Sharp Dressed Man/ Give It Up/ Legs/ Tube Snake Boogie/ Jailhouse Rock/ La Grange/ Tush

On a side note I was really surprised ZZ were not playing the stellar track “Double Back” which of course was in the Back To The Future movie. Such a killer chorus. As much as I wanted to hear it I was glad that they did put “Double Back” as the last track on Recycler album so I have to cut Dusty, Frank and Billy some slack on that.

Come to think of it I think I had “Double Back” on a cassette single!!

 

 

 

 

DRINKING WATER FROM THE HOSE!

A few months back when Andy Curran was on the live stream he told us the story about being a kid and drinking water from a hose which I’m sure most of you did if your as old as us!

“Local Tbay Rock N Roll Icon” the one and only Tbone took what Andy said to heart and has cranked out another good time rock n roll tune with a total retro throwback video to go along with it!

Check it out! Crank it up and tell Tbone ya love it!

Done With Mirrors on The Lebrain Train. Live Tonight @7pm EST

So tonight on Mike LeBrain’s live stream we are joined by Tbone and  are going to be throwing it down with Mikey in regards to the “Done With Mirrors” album by Aerosmith.

A record that is highly regarded by both myself and TBone in a song by song online breakdown of each track in which I’m sure it will be a hoot.

Me and Tbone love this album…

Mikey, well here’s his feeling’s about it…

2/5 stars from me. I like about 2 songs. She’s on Fire and Let the Music do the Talking.

How about another comment..

I don’t necessarily think this album is all that ugly, myself. But to me it sounds unfinished like a demo. I also think the big problem is, song for song, it’s not as good as any of the first five Aerosmiths.

Ouch sez dEke…

What is more concerning now is that on Mikey’s Livestream a  few Friday’s back  Mikey told the world on video in a lead into tonights stream that he only likes one song from Done With Mirrors!

Houston! We got a problem! 

Yet when Mikey reviewed DWM’s back in 2015 here is his comment and score.

“Compared to, say, Pump, Done With Mirrors doesn’t fare too well.  Letting it stand on its own and just enjoying it as a batch of rockers, it’s actually not as bad as I remembered.  Maybe all these years I just haven’t been letting it in.”

I’d say somewhere between 3.5 – 4/5 stars.

Than recently as last Friday January 29th Mikey sent this message to Tbone..

Haha. Whut? Now how’s that for a build up?  Easy on the ‘Barf!” Tbone tell’s him! lol

With Tbone becoming a huge factor in our world of blogging I thought it would be fun to bring Uncle Meat and Mr Kevin along to meet Tbone instead of having to talk to the Tbone Paper Plate! (When Tbone comes back on again down the road it would be cool to have Mr Books and The Snowman on to meet him as well)

I thought by having both MEAT and Kev on it would be good for Mikey as shit could go south quickly as we don’t want to get accused of Live Stream Bullying. lol

So tonight at 7pm. Hit up Mike LeBrain on Youtube and watch us hammer It down with some good conversation and some great laughs!

Here’s my spin on DWM’s that I wrote back in 2014…

 

 Dateline 1985…

 Me and TBone are eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Aero album “Done With Mirrors”. This is big news in Thunder Bay (well for me and him) as when we first got into Aerosmith Perry /Whitford were gone and were blessed though in the meantime with a very good Aero record in Rock In A Hard Place(1982) but Brad and Joe were not on it but Jimmy Crespo and Rick Dufay were good subs for a few years.

So when word hit the street that in 85 there was gonna be a new studio opus we were pumped!

Done With Mirrors hit the deck in November of that year and  maybe just maybe Aerosmith would save the day for all of us hard rockers cause now the big empire Van Halen was hidden away in the foothills of LA,  Rothless, so who was gonna carry the hard rock battalion now?

Well sure enough Aerosmith would right?

Well, kinda,  not in those years from 85-87 until Aerosmith shot to the top with “Permanent Vacation” in late 87 but were getting ahead here. “Done With Mirrors” came out floundered around up and down the charts and sank quicker than TBone shotgunning a six pack!

What the hell happened?

Aero enlisted Ted Templeman to produce and we all know who he had produced (Van Halen)so we were kinda shocked to learn that the album did not do well and they cancelled there Duluth appearance as well(1986)not due to tickets but due to someone being sick?? (take your pick).

Who knows what the deal was but for me and TBone, this album cooked liked a batch of Tyler’s Bitches Brew mixed with a dose of Perry’s” I’ve Got The Rock n Rolls Again”…and you know what we loved this record. It was raw, sloppy, and the songs were downright slimy!

Let’s check on the Aeroboys as there headed down a “One Way Street” into oncoming traffic…

LET THE MUSIC DO THE TALKING-Bam and  out of the gate. Ol Joe and his slide guitar are at work here and Aero is playing quicker than a jet taking off of a runway! As any fan knows this is a remake version from Perry’s solo album 5 yrs earlier (1980) but Steve-o changed the lyrics for this version. This album opener is off to a rocking start!

MY FIST YOUR FACE- Perry/Whitford kick it off and  Joey Kramer drums it into the wall with some ass-kicking beats. Lyrically and vocally Tyler is at the top of his game here and we’re only on track two! The only guy that can make the line “Whacha pissing in the wind for” sound mega cool! Actually, all the lyrics on this track are some of my fave Tylerisms ever!

SHAME ON YOU- Slows the pace down to that sleazy, sloppy jam that we all love from Aerosmith! Aerosmith 1985 is beyond stoned! But beyond stoned here is a real good thing for these guys! Glad that they decided not to sober up until after this release!

THE REASON A DOG- Ends side one and holy shit how time has flown. 4 songs in and 4 classics hatched! Once again Tyler at his lyrical best! Kinda neat how during the middle of the song it builds with a bit of Aero-snyth thrown in but they do not overcook it by drowning in a cess pool of Journey like Cain gunk.

SHELA-Starts off with Kramer on the hi-hats and he’s joined by the Aeros and they cook this number, catchy verse catchy chorus. Catchy everything. Just love the rawness of this. No polish!

GYPSY BOOTS- This one is a corker of a rocker. This is the boys not fooling around. Tyler is sharing the mic with Perry and Perry’s trying to keep up! The guitars are blazing along with the drums. This is Aero going 120 mph in a 40 mph zone….these guys cannot drive 55 if their lives depended on it. They manage to keep it on the rails though. No pun intended.

SHE’S ON FIRE-Reminds me of a head-on collision between Aerosmith and Led Zeppelin. Check out the acoustic slide guitar action and Kramers drums just kick it along.  Great tempo, great song!  Aerosmith makes being doped up in the recording studio seem… Um cool!

THE HOP-Is the end of the album jam. Like they threw it together in 5 minutes but Aero putting a song together in 5 minutes some bands can’t put together a cool anything ever! Plus Steve-o says it best at the end ” cause you’ll be kicking ass tonight with the boys in Aerosmith”  Steve was indeed talking to me and TBone!

This is 36 minutes of classic Aerorock in my book! Man, we played this over and over. Laughed at everything being backward in the credits. If your going to get cleaned up in rehab at least check-in after one more bender! Aerosmith made that promise with Done With Mirrors!

World Premiere Video: Current River- Hodder To Hell(2021)

Well the masses have spoken and Tbone has listened and after 27 years the title track of the original 8 song cassette tape has been given the 2021 upgrade including a video! Now everyone out there can see the area in which we all grew up in.

 I will add that the solo on this tune is another one of my favorites from Tbone as he rips off licks from all the greats!

Enjoy Folks… 

Cut The Covid 2020- Current River Playlist.

Well, Folk’s 2020 is now almost behind us but let’s hope for a better 2021!

So to ring in the New Year what better way to celebrate than to have a 4 pack of tracks of Current River videos at your disposal! 

2 Live Tracks (recorded live on TV 1994) which many of you have seen and 2 Studio Tracks (recorded at Graceland North late 1992 early 1993) that Tbone a little ways back made videos for which a few of have seen.

Now your wondering where the title of this post came from? Well, when I told Tbone I was doing this he chirped “Cut The Covid” which is what I went with as back in 94 we released a live tape called “Cut The Crap”

Crap in 93 and Covid in 2020 go hand in hand don’t ya think?

“Masonry Man” posted below was the leadoff track of the infamous “Hodder To Hell” cassette tape that was written about a friend of ours who had I swear to god a noggin made out of cement. The lyrics are self-explanatory for the most part and the best part of the song is the guitar solo in which Tbone goes from a George Harrison vibe to an attempted Eddie Van Halen rapid picking clip and somewhat miraculously pulls it off!

I can honestly say that this is easily in my all-time TOP 10 Guitar Solo’s as no one to my knowledge has inner channeled George and EVH in 15 seconds like Tbone did back in the winter of 1993!

The second track below is “57-90” which is us attempting an Irish Jig like song. For many when they saw the title and heard the lyrics of “57-90” they thought we wrote about someone passing on. Not the case folk’s as 1957-1990  were the years our highschool was open and you can watch the video and spot a young deKe’s (wearing a Krokus shirt) and rock god in waiting- Tbone during the clip.

As many of you have recently seen and commented( God Bless You All!) are the two live songs from the local TV appearance back in the spring of 94. “Cops At Robins” and “Bush Jacket Boys” is our attempt at goofy rock!

Robins was a donut shop in town that the Cops all migrated to for their coffee breaks and living in Current River we had Robin’s donut shop so the Cops were an easy topic to write about!

One of my fav lines in the song is…

“Strap their one-ton truck to the bank machine push the pedal to the metal and get away clean”

That line actually rings true as a couple of dudes did indeed back a truck through a bank here in Thunder Bay and stole a bank machine and supposedly drove it by a donut shop back in 1992! 

Not too sure if they ever got caught but it makes for a great story!

“Cops At Robin’s what do we got here, enough coffee and donuts to last us a year!”

The second song “Bush Jacket Boys” tells the story of a young grunger dude going up to an old aging rocker in the early 90s.  The chorus says it all…

“Before Seattle and the grunge rock noise Current River gave birth to the Bush Jacket Boys”

Happy New Year Folks!

See ya in 2021!

 

 

Current River: Cops At Robins/Bush Jacket Boys-1994

Tbone was digging through his Rock N Roll Vault at “Castle Del Erickson” and has unearthed rare lost footage that is now available for you all to watch.

Here we are in our infinite glory. “CURRENT RIVER” Playing in local talent show here in Thunder Bay back in 1994  which was filmed. 

If anything you will get a good laugh out of watching this.

At the talent show that night there were I believe 8 local bands/artists that competed. We did not Win. Let’s put that out there now. 

It didn’t matter as just three months earlier we put out our “Hodder To Hell” tape and I learned to play hacker-style Bass that Tbone taught me.

We played three songs two of which are featured here.

“Cops & Robins” and “Bush Jacket Boys” were televised whereas our third song “Rockin In A Rubber” was left on the editing room floor. 

Keep in mind when watching we weren’t pros we were just having fun. 5 knuckleheads pretending to be rockers.

Enjoy…

Current River Band:

Tbone- Vocals/Rythm Guitar

Fernando-Lead Guitar and Porn Stache

Moose- Rhythm Guitar/Backing Vocals

dEKe-4 Letter word called Bass

The Baker-Drums

Tbone’s Top 11 All Time Favourite Concerts.

      T-Bone’s Top 11 Live Concerts

HEY FOLK’S! Did you all see Tbone live on Mikey’s stream last night? Well in case you missed it here is the man himself going into full detail about his all-time Top 11 Live Shows! Take it away Tbone….

  1. Tragically Hip. Man Machine Poem- Final Tour. Winnipeg. 2016-Most emotional concert I’ve ever attended. We all saw the final show in Kingston on CBC when Canada shut down for the day to pay our respect. I consider myself extraordinarily fortunate to have been invited to take this one in and will never forget it. The only time I’ve opening cried at a Rock concert “… Get Ry Cooder to sing my eulogy” hit me very hard that night. Gord Downey was on stage by himself at the end of the show looking everywhere in the arena at everyone in the crowd and literally thanking every single person it felt like and the crowd was deafening and this went on for such a long time but yet you didn’t want it to end. Because the end would be final. This one will be very, very hard to top for me personally.

     

    2--Aerosmith Pump Tour 1990-Before the summer of 2016 when I attended what would become my new #1, this was the show for me. Not only was this a phenomenal concert both musically and visually, by a band that only a few years earlier ressurected itself from the Rock’n Roll graveyard, but I was still a somewhat impressionable, Smith fan seeing them live for the first time and this was a bus tour package with an awesome group of people including Deke and my bro’s and the total experience was just incredible. And Skid Row opened so that didn’t hurt either. I could go on and on but I’ll leave it at that.
  2. 3-U2. 360 Tour. Montreal. 2011-This is the biggest concert I’ve ever attended, 80,000+, and U2 did not disappoint. Even though this outdoor show concluded in a huge rainstorm, that only adds to my memories of this show. Great, great show supporting “No Line on the Horizon”, which is one of their better post “Achtung Baby” albums in my opinion.
  1. 4-Van Halen. F.U.C.K. tour. Minneapolis. 1992-Van Halen since 1984 has been unabashedly been my favorite band, and this was my first time actually getting to see them live. This was the height of the Van-Hagar version of the band and myself and a friend (Funk, Deke knows who this is.) actually got to sneak into soundcheck. As we went to the Target Centre to collect our tickets at Will-call, we could here Van Halen riffs pour out of the arena so we snuck down some corridor and popped out in the upper deck and quietly just took it all in. Very cool experience.
  1. 5-Rolling Stones. Voodoo Lounge. TO. 1994-What can you say about the Stones? Legends, awesome tunes, Keith Richards is a God that no drug or substance on the planet can take out. This was a time when many first and second-generation Classic Rock Bands were doing huge reunion tours or in the Stones case, business as usual, and this tour was huge doing huge numbers and Deke I got to experience first hand why. And it didn’t hurt that STP opened the show as I was just becoming a fan of their music and this concert cemented that for me.
  1. 6-Rush. Vapour Trails. Minneapolis 2002-I have only ever had the privilege of experiencing Rush once, live in concert, but it was worth the wait. Wow! Neil Peart in particular just blew me away. Drum solos usually mean Washroom break or let’s go check our the T-shirt mech, but not when he’s on the kit. Geddy and Alex were equally impressive in their business type approach to nailing every song but still maintaining a sense of humor along the way. One of Canada’s most impressive exports for sure. And “ NO Deke” I am not prepared to share any of the Big Red exploits from this trip. LOL
  1. 7-Bon Jovi. Jersey. Winnipeg. 1989-This was my first out of town, big concert event with Deke, and in my opinion, Bon Jovi was supporting their best Album, so for those reasons, it makes the list. Skid Row who I was also into at the time opened, so this was the real-deal…. Full-On, Arena-Cock-Rock as Deke would say, not for the faint of heart. Jon popped out of the stage at the beginning of Lay Your Hands on Me to start the show and from that moment on I wasn’t sure whether to watch the band or the girls throwing their underwear at them. First World Problems, I guess.
  1. 8-Paul McCartney. New World Tour. Winnipeg. 1993-Seeing Paul live was seeing a living legend and as close as I’d ever get to experiencing the Beatles, so what more really needs to be said. Even in his later years the guy could then and still delivers. Only weird memory from this show was he was really pushing a promoting Vegetarianism, which Deke and I found a little humorous. Should have snuck in a couple Big Mac’s or Whoppers just for fun.
  1. 9-Pink Floyd. Division Bell Tour. Winnipeg. 1994– I never have been a huge Pot consumer, beer and whiskey are more my vices, however, I wish I had smoked up before this show as I’m pretty sure Deke and I were the only two in Winnipeg Stadium who weren’t lit up. That said, even though this was the David Gilmour version of Floyd, whom I love as a guitar player, Pink Floyd was and is an iconic name with iconic tunes, and getting a chance to experience that live was not lost on me.
  1. 10-Motley Crüe. Dr. Feelgood. Winnipeg. 1990-I struggled with where to slot this one in as in more recent years my Crue fandom has waned somewhat but still, I knew this show had to make the list. At the time I think it’s fair to say, that Deke and I loved this show. Tommy Lee’s drums rose up off the stage and traveled out above the crowd, the band came on at the very end of the show and played a second encore (Don’t Go Away Mad) with the house lights on which at least felt like an ad-lib at the time with Vince saying to the rabid Winnipeg crowd “You guys have been kicking our asses all night so here’s one more for ya”. This was Motley at their best.
  1. 11-Sloan. Navy Blues. Crocks/NV. 2019– This is the only Thunder Bay show to make my list and I wanted to have at least one and I also needed to have Sloan on this list as I’ve never seen them in a larger setting but have seen them with Deke here in Thunder Bay in the bar/club setting a couple times, and I absolutely love these guys. And since Navy Blues is my favorite Sloan album, slam dunk, easy choice. I love the concept of playing the whole album as a first set and then play a second set of favorites. Also, love watching Chris play drums when Andrew steps up to the mic. His drumming style looks like it’s about to fall off the rails at any point but it never does. Awesome! …. S-L-O-O-A-N!
  1.  

 

Serious contenders but I wanted to keep things one per band. These are in no particular order.

  1. Tragically Hip. Thunder Bay. Crocks. 1988
  2. U2. Vertigo Tour. Minneapolis. 2005. 
  3. Bryan Adams/ Steve Miller/ Extreme. Birds Hill Provincial Park, Manitoba. 1992
  4. Sloan, One Chord to Another, Thunder Bay. Crocks. 2016
  5. Aerosmith Nine Lives, Minneapolis. 1997
  6. Aerosmith. Just Push Play. Minneapolis. 2001. Mainly for opening act The Cult. Ian Astbury was worth the price of admission on his own.
  7. Georgia Satellites, In the Land of Salvation and Sin. Thunder Bay, 1989
  8. ZZ Top with Colin James. Recycler. Winnipeg. 1990
  9. John 5 with Jared James Nichols, Crocks/NV. Thunder Bay. 2020
  10. Helix. Razor’s Edge. Thunder Bay (LU Agora). 1985
  11. Ted Nugent. Little Miss Dangerous. Thunder Bay. 1986
  12. Jeff Healy. CLE Colesium. 1990

 

***Too many cool TBay shows to mention, never mind remembering them all at my age. LOL

 

 

 

 

 

Vinyl Rewrite- RUSH: Signals(1982)

When I received on Friday this text from Tbone’s brother Darr that Neil Peart had passed I was shocked as were millions of others.

I basically spent Friday night(and basically the weekend) surfing FaceBook and Twitter as hundreds of tributes poured into that fella Peart who revolutionized rock drumming.  Guys like Paul Stanley/Peter Criss/Mike Portnoy/Slash/Duff/Gene Simmons/Lars Ulrich/Julian Lennon and Taylor Hawkins who commented that Neil had the ‘Hands of God’ were brilliant and all from the heart.

Fellow Bloggers such as Mikey/HMO/80’s MetalMan/Destroyer of Harmony/Andrew/BOP/Jeff Jap/Bourbon and Vinyl wrote awesome posts about Peart’s passing.

I was going to as well but I thought I would also talk about the very first RUSH album I purchased which was Signals back in 1982.

Tbone in the summer of 1981 got Moving Pictures on vinyl and that was my intro to RUSH as they were HUGE that year as Tom Sawyer and Limelight were everywhere.

Xmas 1981 my parents gave me Moving Pictures along with Exit Stage Left which just blew my mind!

Once Signals hit the streets in  September 1982 we were all snapping it up pretty much the day it hit the streets. What a way to start Grade 10 that year. First week back to school and a new RUSH album to dig into.

Safe to say I blew out a few weeks of doing homework that September as I was studying the lyrics of Neil Peart as well as the riffage brought forth by Lee/Lifeson!

Signals was 80’s Rush. 8 tracks. 4 songs per side. Synthy driven as the opener Subdivisions proves. Analog Kid has to be in my Top 5 all-time Rush Tunes. I love how Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson lock horns with the bass and guitars and Neil just does the rest on the song.

Chemistry is awash in keys but what a fantastic tune. Neil drives the song forward. The wild thing about Chemistry is it’s one of the few Rush tunes that the lyrics were written by Neil/Geddy and Alex!

Countdown details the very first NASA Launch of the Space Shuttle. A total Prog Rock track and the way Neil writes the lyrics you think you were there with him..

Lit up with anticipation
We arrive at the launching site
The sky is still dark, nearing dawn
On the Florida coastline

Circling choppers slash the night
With roving searchlight beams
This magic day when super-science
Mingles with the bright stuff of dreams

Floodlit in the hazy distance
The star of this unearthly show
Venting vapors, like the breath
Of a sleeping white dragon

Crackling speakers voices tense
Resume the final count
All systems check, T-minus-nine
As the sun and the drama start to mount

The air is charged, a humid, motionless mass
The crowds and the cameras
The cars full of spectators pass
Excitement so thick, you could cut it with a knife
Technology high, on the leading edge of life

The earth beneath us starts to tremble
With the spreading of a low black cloud
A thunderous roar shakes the air
Like the whole world exploding

Scorching blast of golden fire
As it slowly leaves the ground
Tears away with a mighty force
The air is shattered by the awesome sound

Excitement so thick, you could cut it with a knife
Technology high, on the leading edge of life
Like a pillar of cloud, the smoke lingers
High in the air
In fascination with the eyes
of the world, we stare

Safe to say that Neil was my favorite teacher in Grade 10 whereas I could lye in my bed and drop the needle on this album and it would just take my mind away as there was always something going on within the parameters of a RUSH song. Whether it was the music or the lyrics.

So Brilliant!

People have gone on at times that Alex was at times buried under the keyboards in the 80s, Perhaps but what I always dug that come solo time the guitar would be upfront as they would just strip it all back to that three-piece band no one could touch em. Then, now or forever! Listen to Alex’s solo from Subdivisions for reference.

New World Man was a cool single that grazed just inside the Top 40 single charts which was impressive, to say the least. New Word Man is RUSH writing a little prog-rock ditty and just kicks into gear when it goes from the pre-chorus to the chorus.

Peart always pushed himself as a drummer. I mean listen to some of his drumming on Signals and I hear at times The Police’s Stewart Copeland (check out Digital Man at the end of SIde 1)who himself is no slouch on the skins. See Neil at that time could adapt some influences and incorporate it into his playing. He always pushed the envelope. Check out and crank up this live clip posted below!

Losing it is another tune with RUSH shifting gears almost into Prog Ballad (is there such a thing?). Losing It tells the tale of a dancer breaking down from wear and tear on her body. You could almost say that about Neil as a drummer as the man played like a beast for over 40 years and even his body began to break down not that anyone of use ever noticed as Neil wouldn’t allow it!

This album is my favorite studio album by RUSH( 2012’s Clockwork Angels is a very close second as is Counterparts). It’s still hard rock but with a different kind of vibe. Along with Iron Maiden at the time. The lyrics made me think. Which was a good thing doncha think?!

Rush at times on Signals kick out some serious jams just listen to the beginning of Digital Man. Geddy basically solos right out of the gate on that Rickybacher. So smooth as Neil and Alex follow his lead.

Classic Stuff! For me, 80’s RUSH was where I discovered the music created by Neil/Geddy and Alex so this period resonates with me. I’m not the only one that feels that way. Ask HMO and he will tell you the same thing!

As many of you know when I turned 50 a few years back I decided to dive headfirst back into acquiring VINYL!

For my 50th, myself and Tbone headed to Montreal and I was on the prowl for used Vinyl. We were in a huge used record store and Tbone went one way and I went another.

A few minutes later I hear ‘DEKE!” I looked over and Tbone was holding a copy of Signals.  I told him “do not put that back down in the bin!”

What a Score!

Cool to have come full circle as back in 1981 Tbone was the first one between us to own RUSH(Moving Pictures) and then 35 years later there’s Tbone holding a copy of another RUSH(Signals) album.

Time Stand Still

You have to hand it to Neils buddies Geddy and Alex who knew all along what was going on but kept Neils condition private through it all. Much RESPECT for those two fine Gents!

Chuck D (Public Enemy) put it best when he wrote a tribute to Neil and said “Rest In Beats”

Thank you, Neil, for the music and lyrics.

 

Coney Hatch: Live in Thunder Bay(Nov 23rd 2019)-eVents Nightclub

 

Pretty psyched to finally have been able to see Coney Hatch after being a fan of these Iconic Rockers since the self-titled debut hit the street’s back in 1982!

Never up until this point have I ever had the opportunity to see Coney live until this show was announced a little over a month ago.

If your a reader of this Blog (I Thank Ya!) then you know have I reviewed the 4 studio Coney albums that the band has put out over the years. Those being the self-titled as previously mentioned debut  (1982) Outta Hand(1983), Friction (1985) and Four (2013).  All of these Hatch albums are fine additions to any Hard Rock Fans Music Collection!

As per rock protocol, my good pal Tbone was along for the ride as he’s been hearing me talk about these guys for well over 3 decades!

So when Carl Dixon (Lead Vocals/Guitar) Andy Curran(Lead Vocals/Bass) Sean Kelly(Lead Guitar/Backing Vocals) and Thunder Bays very own Dave ‘Thumper’ Ketchum (Drums) hit the stage shortly after midnight all bets were off as the Coney fella’s kicked out the jams with opener “We Got The Night” that has Ketchum laying down the backbeat on the drums like he’s the boss!

The real added plus of Coney Hatch was that they have two lead vocalists in both Carl and Andy who takes the lead vocal as they launch into Stand Up which has a real cool slow swagger to it which featured Sean Kelly nailing down a fantastic solo ( as Mr. Kelly did all night).

The AC/DC-driven  “No Sleep Tonight”was next followed by “Don’t Say Make Me” which is, in my opinion, one of my all-time fav’s! Love that driving Bass Line by Andy! 

What a fantastic 4 pack of songs to get the night rolling!

“Some Like It Hot” kept the show moving along and another track from Outta Hand that as Carl explained from the stage that “First Time For Everything” was a song that garnered some MTV and MuchMusic video play

“Hey Operator” one of the two big singles was played halfway through the show which shows you the number of songs these guys have built over the years which when you think of it they could have saved it to the end of the set but didn’t. Keeps us in the audience on our toes!

The band played tracks from all of there records as “Blown Away” andMarseille” were featured from the Four album released already 6 years ago!

“This Ain’t Love/Girl From Last Nights Dream/Wrong Side of Town” and “She’s Gone” were shown some love from the Friction album which in the Coney catalog of rock may be the album that flew under the radar for most but I will tell ya it’s certainly up there with the other three releases with some stellar written and performed songs!

“Devils Deck” and “Monkey Bars” from the self-titled debut album( that went Gold in Canada) ended Coney’s regular set.

Coney left and came right back out and walloped us over the head with a kick-ass cover of AC/DC’s Sin City!

Being a fan of these guys since 1982 I can honestly say it was one of my favorite shows in this town as I was 15 when I discovered Coney and finally had the opportunity 37 years later to finally see the band!

As great as the show was the Coney guys are even better people! Carl was in the audience(before the show) when he cruised by our table I asked if him if he wouldn’t mind signing my Coney albums!  Carl asked me if I was the guy who left a message on his Facebook page telling him to bring a sharpie to the show to sign my records! (Yup it was me!)

Carl even took my 3 Coney records and two Andy Curran solo CD’s backstage and had the fella’s all sign them and Carl brought them back to me along with Sean Kelly!

Thanks, Carl!

It was great meeting Sean as if you recall he was one the first guys to do a ’10 Questions With..’  interview for me and was very gracious. Meeting him though was awesome as we talked about Music, Families, more Music and well you get the drift! Solid dude if there ever was and a fantastic guitar player/singer and performer!

Just as we were about to leave and head home I bumped into Andy as well and we chatted for a few minutes as it was nice to talk to him and tell him that the last time Coney was in Thunder Bay in 1985 I was 17 and couldn’t get into the show as you had to be 19 to get in to Bar’s here in town. Cool to talk to Andy about his past project Soho 69 and the Rush book Wandering The Face of The Earth.

Oddly enough Dave Ketchum was the only guy I didn’t get a chance to speak to and he lives here in town! Maybe next time!

It was a great night period and if ever Coney Hatch comes around do go as you won’t be disappointed!

Check out Coney Hatch on your various streaming devices or buy the reissues on disc from Rock Candy or better yet track these albums down on Vinyl!

Photo of the Coney Hatch stage courtesy of Sean Kelly.

Live band shots were taken by Adriana Coslett (Thanks Buddy!)

Band Photos were taken by Tbone (Whiskey on the Rocks).

BIG WRECK: NV Music Hall (November 15th 2019)-Thunder Bay

Canadian Rockers Big Wreck rolled into Tbay on a Friday night and proved without a doubt that Rock (for one night that is!) is alive and well in this town which may come as a shock to some.

NV Music Hall was packed (Sold Out) and I mean packed for BW leader Ian Thornley who returns to Tbay supporting the latest release  ‘…but for the sun’.

(above shot of Big Wreck in Tbay- Cabin Media took the pic-Nov 15/19)

Taking the stage just after 10pm Big Wreck came out of the gates with the opening track from there latest release called ‘Voices’ followed by ‘In My Head’ which features some really slick off the top soloing by Ian.

And we’re off!

‘That Song’ which was one of the biggie singles from the debut album In Loving Memory of(1997)   proved to be the first of more than a few crowd participation numbers which was actually quite good to see in this town as crowds at shows here (especially at the stuffy Auditorium) can be mellow to say the least.

Shows you the depth of material built up in the BW catalog that they can dial up and blast out one of there most popular tunes third song in the show!

That’s saying something!

(above photo was taken by my pal Jeff Yahn whom I call the Yahnmower Man! Great Shot!)

‘Locomotive’ one of the best if not the best rock radio track I have heard this year soared as Ian and fellow 6 stringer Chris Cadell did some dual slide guitar throughout this track which at times sounded like a Locomotive coming off the tracks! This song was so good that I told Tbone when it ended that I would be ok to hear it played again and again. So good!

Tbone said it best that Thornley is a musician first and foremost as his guitar chops and vocals prove that point! Hell if you don’t believe Tbone ask Myles Kennedy(AlterBridge/Slash) who says Ian is one of the best in the biz!

‘Too Far Gone’ (with that cool ZZ Top guitar jam out at the end of the song) which was another newbie was played as six tracks in total were played from ‘…but for the sun’ that proves that BW is moving forward with music but with also keeping everyone happy about still dipping back in there past and playing the songs that brought them to a prominent level in Canada.

For us Canucks, two Tragically Hip tunes were played the first being a snippet of ‘Ahead by a Century’ which led into ‘Wolves’ which was a cool move. The element of surprise so to speak.

The show had a great pace to it. Some of the songs that the band stretched out(Albatross that featured a double-neck guitar* along with a snippet of Amazing Grace) which would be followed by shorter numbers like the brilliant ‘Inhale’ which features big bombastic riffs of Zep like rock that just soars.

‘Blown Wide Open’ ended the set amidst a bit of feedback of the instruments but before long BW was back out onstage for a encore that featured the second Hip cover of the night that being ‘In View’ which had Drummer Chuck Keeping and Bassist Dave MacMillian holding the rhythm fort down exceptionally! Cool that ‘In View’ was played in full!

Speaking of which there is no musical weak link in Big Wreck as each player is phenomenal on there instrument!

The boys ended the night with ‘The Oaf’ which has that Who like synth opening yet Ian does it on his guitar and the final song must have clocked in at over 10 minutes! What a way to wrap up a solid night of rock!

Openers Texas King hailing from London Ontario are an energetic band on the up and up with there current single ‘Chandelier’ denting the charts in Canada. Never heard of these guys before tonight but if they ever make it back to Tbay they are worth going and checking out as they work every inch of stage afforded to them. Texas King sound is like a Red Bull-Steroid infused shot of Counting Crows!

Good to see BW play in front of a lively crowd here in town as at the last Big Wreck show here back at the local outdoor Bluesfest the word I heard was that Ian was not amused by the lawnchair crowd sitting on there hands so to speak. I wasn’t there so I can’t say for sure. I will add that maybe a jam-filled club is more up Ian’s alley than a bunch of lazy’s in lawn chairs!

I have to thank local promoter Frank Marino who went beyond the call of duty to take care of me and Tbone and for getting us into the show! Thanks a bunch, Frank. It was a blast.

Tbone though was in classic mode as when we arrived at the venue we were still a half-hour away from the door opening. No one here in town is ready for winter about to descend in Tbay so we were  not dressed for the elements.

Tbone took matter into his own hands and sent Frank this message!

Ha! Tbone is a great typer but his fingers were frozen. Within a few seconds the door swung open and a staffer asked if there was fella named Troy present!

Bam we went from the back of the line (about 40 people) to the front! Cold to Heat in seconds!

Felt like a Big Shot for about a minute!

*-kudos to the Guitar and Bass Tech fella’s that continually changed out guitar after guitar after each song!