So since it’s officially 2015 now and lotsa people are doing fav lists in music/movies/books etc I’m gonna throw down my top 5 of which I posted over at mikeladano.com yesterday but left #3 blank to which it now can be revealed is this Sonic Wave review of Rival Sons/Great Western Valkyrie!
Arena Rocks Top 5 for 2014
1-Slash World On Fire- 17 tracks no filler! Slash and crew rock it to the top with solid well written performed songs and Myles Kennedy further proves on this that he is becoming one of the rocks top vocalists!
2-Tragically Hip/Fully Completely- the bonus show added from the Horseshoe Tavern from 1992 is absolute Gold! The Hip have never sounded better and more importantly Gord Downie is totally off the rails with his in between stage banter! Great stuff!
3-Rival Sons/Great Western Valkyrie-read review below!
4-AC/DC/Rock Or Bust-35 minutes of just good Ol riffs n roll! What’s not to like!
5-Bryan Adams/Reckless Deluxe Edition-Adams steps up and pulls out all the stops on this mid 80s AOR masterpiece! The full Reckless album plus 7 unreleased studio tracks also a full show from the Reckless tour of 1985 from London England is included! Ladies and gents that’s how Ya do a Deluxe!
Since I’m kinda like becoming a bit of an old geezer it takes a lot for me to get into some new musical acts and dig but my buddy at work Metal Todd( who has since upped and moved to Oregon) introduced me to The Rival Sons and boy I’m I glad he ever did! Metal Todd ended up giving me a copy of Rival Sons Head Down album and it’s a very good release which I will have to tackle here as well at some point but Metal Todd dug these guys so much that he took his wife Nic and flew from Tbay to Chicago to see the Sons play infront of a sold out crowd of like 200 people for like $15 a ticket! And hey brother thanks again for the Tee!
This blog is for Metal Todd and Nic!
2014 and Rival Sons release a very solid followup…
Ummm. Let’s go Rockin with Jay Buchanan/ Scott Holiday/Dave Beste/Micheal Miley
ELECTRIC MAN-ok the first thing I dig about these guys is there sound! I mean this is the first song and the guitars are fuzzed up big time and Scott Holiday plays some catchy sounding riffs wheras his foil lead vocalist Jay Buchanan I hear some Paul Rodgers in his voice and man for me that’s a great thing! The sonics on this the first song are awesome and man when Jay lays down the “whoa hey,heeeeey,hey sexy lady” the dude has got the vocal chops no doubt! Also they make use of the keyboards on how they should make use of keyboards! In other words just filling out the sound and thats the way I like it! Also check out the vid above its the Sons playing live at the studios of Q-107 in T.O! Crank it!
GOOD LUCK- ahh yeah man….Scott rips the fuzz out of the box and jams some real cool guitar and man the hook in this tune is so catchy! Also of note the drummer Micheal Miley and Dave Beste rock and hold down the fort and man these cats can all play! No slouch amongst any of em! I love this tune! Good luck baby getting on without me! That ain’t me saying it that’s Jay laying down the Law! Hey there Ya go! Remember Paul Rodgers band from about say 25 years ago The Law? Naa I didn’t think so…I’m just trying to impress Ya with my rock knowledge!
SECRET-this song shows that the Sons can jam it up and drop in and make some cool time changes mid stream and keep it all in check! Actually the keyboard drives this tune but than Scott whacks out some more cool riffage and man what a great guitarist! Holiday does not play his guitar by the rules he kinda goes all over the place with his style But keeps himself and his 6 string in check! But yeah man..he’s got real good guitar style! Dave Cobb (producer)also must get a round of applause! He brings this album to life!
PLAY THE FOOL-Scott lays down the riff and is the driver of the bus on this song! The drums and bass drive it as well and Jay drops down some more cool vocals and its becoming apparent that these dudes love to jam and it shows!
GOOD THINGS- somewhat slows the pace a bit! Not to much though this song has a different kind of groove,more kinda like if your in the middle of the field somewhere and well your baked! Good Things will happen to you and Jays the preacher man on this tune.
OPEN MY EYES- Micheal lays down the drum beat and the boys all chip in and rock this the first single from the album and man it’s a catchy little rock ditty! This song tells us the listener that the Sons are crashing the party and aren’t leaving! Call the cleanup crew Metal Todd!
RICH AND POOR- Micheal slams the drums and the boys join him and man there’s that sneakey little keyboard riding along to the gig with the band! Big chorus/Big Riffs man it’s all in this song! Jay steps up once again with the singing! He’s gotta start topping some peoples lists soon I mean guys with deadly rock voices don’t come along too often! Case in point- when Seattle and the grunge rock noises came along and destroyed everything in its site,here comes this dude named Chris Cornell who easily caught my ear and to this day has to be in my top 5 all time vocalists! Shit man…he always sounds like he’s gonna toss up a lung ….Cornell he’s the man! Anyways Mr Buchanan though he’s making noise at the door of Chris Cornell!
BELLE STAR- cool song number ?? I’ve lost track it’s all good! This song the 4 musos strut there rock knowledge and keep it real! Love the looseness of the middle part of the song ! This is jam song number ?? Who knows and who cares …keep it going Sons!
DESTINATION ON COURSE- ha, so the Sons think your leaving party in a few minutes? Nope make that 7 minutes! What a way to close a album this song just plain trips out kinda like a mash up of mellow Zep slamming into something spacey by Pink Floyd! It’s out there man and for me this is a good chill for 7 minutes! Multilayered instruments on this add to the fire! What a way to end easily in my top 5 albums of 2014! Ok,now I got the munchies!
IN CONCLUSION- some people and myself earlier on would call these guys retro/ throwback rock but after listening to them now for a few years there just forging into some new sonic niches that haven’t been tapped and when they do borrow ..who fuckin cares! Like no one ever borrows musically from no one? Ha! The production and the sonics on this are wickedly brilliant!(take a bow Dave Cobb) This album now don’t laugh at me does totally remind me of U2s last great record Achtung Baby not in the songs but the sound! U2 1991 was making sounds that I had never heard sonically(Edges guitar)and here we are 2015 and Rival Sons are doing it to me again sonically!(Holidays guitar) Congrats fellas for messing with a ol buggers noggin!