Thursday, 27 November 2014

This weeks most played artist according to Last.fm

This weeks most played tracks acording to Last.FM

GEOFF TATE's QUEENSRYCHE - Frequency Unknown [Billy Sherwood's Mix] (2014)

Genre - Hard Rock / Heavy Metal
Label - Cleopatra Records

Track listing:
01. Cold
02. Dare
03. Give It To You
04. Slave
05. In The Hands Of God
06. Running Backwards
07. Life Without You
08. Everything
09. Fallen
10. The Weight Of The World
 
"Frequency Unknown", the only album released the Geoff Tate-fronted version of QUEENSRŸCHE following his dismissal from the band, arrived in April 2013 amidst a swarm of controversy. The group had just split in two, with Tate leading an all-new group of musicians while the remaining members of QUEENSRŸCHE carried on with a new vocalist, Todd La Torre.
Tate's version of QUEENSRŸCHE included longtime associate Kelly Gray plus former Quiet Riot / Ozzy bassist Rudy Sarzo and legendary AC/DC and DIO drummer Simon Wright. This group quickly recorded and released "Frequency Unknown", and though the album earned some praise from critics, complaints began to surface about the quality of the album's mix.
In response, Cleopatra Records commissioned multi-instrumentalist and producer Billy Sherwood (of YES) to remix the entire album.
However, due to schedule restrictions, Sherwood was never able to complete his mix... until now.
Then, this is it: Cleopatra Recs is presenting a special limited deluxe edition reissue of "Frequency Unknown" with a slightly different coloured artwork, including the original album plus a full-length bonus disc of Sherwood's complete reimagining of the record.
Many of the songs were rearranged almost from scratch, with Sherwood adding orchestral arrangements and his own unique spin on these compositions.
I liked "Frequency Unknown", really. But it's true there were some mixing and mastering flaws.
Now Billy Sherwood has done a clean mastering, at the point we can call this release a 'remastered reissue', while his mix made all instruments more audible, transparent. Many guitar solos have been edited for better result, and the drums sound much, much better now.
But Billy also has added 'some stuff' not heard in the original release (just listen "Everything" as example). And I like it a lot. This sounds almost like a completely different album.
Judge by yourselves...
Rating - 8/10

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Tony Wright (Terrorvision) - Thoughts 'n' All (2014)


Genre - Rock / Acoustic
Label - Pledge Music / Woodcut Records
 
Track listing:
01. Self Portrait (Rock a Boogie Merchant)
02. Love Hold On
03. You Changed
04. Little Things
05. Great Horton
06. Shallow Pool (Train Wreck) 
07. Roll Over
08. Do You Love Me?
09. Gunner Getcha
10. All Of My Love

###### The following review is not my work, but I simply couldn't find a better way to describe things, therefore all credit must please go to the original author! #######

"For some reason, Terrorvision have never been a particularly cool band to like, although, it has to be said, “Tequila” did make them flavour of the month for a short while. However, from the moment I heard “Pretend Best Friend” and “Oblivion” back when I worked in a record shop in 1994, I was hooked on the Yorkshire band's material and have followed their career ever since, quietly resenting and trying to educate the people who seemed to think that the band's quasi-novelty hit was the only thing they'd ever really done. When I happened to stumble on Tony Wright's PledgeMusic solo album project, helping that happen was something I definitely wanted to get on board with. I've had “Thoughts 'n' All” for a few months now, have had plenty of time to get to know it and it's a rather fine acoustic album from Tony and Milly (Milton Evans, also of Terrorvision). I have to confess that I wasn't sure just how much Tony's material and voice would suit an acoustic-based record, but it instantly won me over. This is a collection of well-written, likeable, lovingly performed songs which have many characteristics of Terrorvision's work, but with a greater subtlety and finesse.
The album kicks off with the very decent autobiographical “Self Portrait” which sees Tony taking a bit of a critical look in the mirror, followed by the tender “Love Hold On” relating the often told story of one person loving the other when the feeling is no longer mutual. “You Changed”, with a nice bit of slide guitar, continues the subject where the previous song left off and it's most definitely something that many listeners will be able to relate to. “Little Things” is a fairly pleasant song, but, if I'm honest, the lyrics in the chorus could have been slightly better. The first truly great song of the album is “Great Horton”, describing a typical night out in a suburb of Bradford, including drinking, covers bands, pool, club and curry; seriously, it's worth the price of the album alone. “Shallow Pool” has some great lyrics and an excellent light and shade character to the verse and chorus, whereas the mellow “Roll Over” is probably the most catchy, instantly likeable piece on the whole record. “Do You Love Me” is dramatic, pained, tortured and utterly brilliant, “Gunner Getchta” almost sounds like Terrorvision unplugged and would really benefit from the band's rock treatment, although it does boast a rather fine Spanish guitar solo, and final song “All Of My Love” is a passionate piece featuring some excellent acoustic guitar work. All-in-all, a gratifying forty minutes worth of music.
I don't think that many people who have followed the band over the years will be too surprised by how good “Thoughts 'n' All” is and, perhaps, they will be the main audience for this album anyway. However, it would be a crying shame if this album was only listened to by such a limited circle of music lovers; Tony's début solo effort deserves to be heard by a much wider range of people, as it is a bloody good singer-songwriter album, boasting a high level of musicianship and a great deal of heart. For those not quite sure about the acoustic nature of the release, I would strongly recommend that you leave any of those reservations aside and give it a chance, as many of the elements that make up a classic Terrorvision song are all present and correct here, just in a slightly more refined form. With songs about drinking, nostalgia, love, longing and heartbreak, Tony has released a piece of work that most of his fans will be able to relate to, sing along with and will, most likely, love."
(Reviewed By Andy Sweeney)

Very highly recommended!

Rating 10/10


 

Badger - Time Will Tell

Genre - Hard Rock
Label - Self Released / Pledge Music
 
Track listing:
 
01 - Whatever Happened 2 Us
02 - Inside Out
03 - Lie Behind My Eyes
04 - Losing Faith
05 - When It Rains
06 - Time Will Tell
07 - Freak Me Out
08 - Suicidal Sunday
09 - Lost And Found
10 - Into The Light
11 - C'mon C'mon

Time Will Tell is the debut album from Extreme bassist Pat Badger, (hence the Badger moniker / title!) and its a pretty impressive affair.
"With all due respect to Pat Badger he’s really pushing his own personal boundaries here and putting himself out there in a way that he’s never done before in the past. Having never really been able to break through the Cherone / Bettencourt song writing stronghold that was Extreme, Pat has enlisted the help of songwriter/producer extraordinaire Bleu in order to produce this, his first solo album, though the Pledge Music platform. As you might expect from a Badger/Bleu collaboration the songs here are rocky, poppy, melodic and very, very catchy."
An important thing to note here is that Pat is singing lead vocals for the first time here, and I have to say that he puts in a pretty damn impressive performance. In fact, if you compare this album with Gary Cherone’s ‘Van Halen III’ and you’ll find that this underdog wins single every time!
With a sound that brings to mind Sixx A:M's more melodic rockers this album doesn't have a bad track on it. Opening with the powerhouse duo of Whatever Happened 2 Us and Inside Out, before slowing things down slightly with Lie Behind My Eyes, things get off to a great start.
Losing Faith is a great piano led ballad, whilst When It Rains proves to be a tricky little track. With a string section that almost fools you into thinking that this is going to be the third ballad in a row before kicking into a mid tempo-ed little rocker of a track.
Title track time will tell is up next and whilst proving to be a nice little melodic rocker it seems to lack some of the magic and energy of its predecessors. The same can be said of Freak Me Out, there is absolutely nothing wrong with this song, it just seems to lack that certain little umpth that the albums earlier tracks have. Things pick up again with Suicidal Sunday, which is a darker moodier track, a great little rock track.
Lost And Found is almost a full blown Extreme studio reunion, featuring Gary Cherone and  Kevin Figueiredo and proves to be another great little mid paced rocker.
Into The Light is a beautiful little acoustic guitar track that leads nicely into the albums closer, C'mon C'mon, which in itself is a great track and see's the album returning to the form that was set by its opening couple of tracks.

A great debut effort, and a solid album even if it does seem to loose some energy in the second half.

Well worth checking out!

Rating - 8/10




Arcade Messiah - Arcade Messiah (2014)

Genre - Heavy Metal / Metal / Hard Rock / Progressive Rock / Instrumental
Label - Stereohead Records

Track listing:
01 - Sun Exile
02 - Your Best Line Of Defence Is Obscurity
03 - Traumascope
04 - Aftermath
05 - Everybody Eating Everyone Else
06 - The Most Popular Form Of Escape
07 - Roman Resolution

Arcade Messiah is the latest project from KingBathmat front man John Bassett following hot on the heels of his debut solo album Unearth. With Arcade Messiah, John Bassett manages to combine elements of stoner rock, prog rock, metal, doom and hard rock into a beautiful blend of instrumental music that paints lush soundscapes with brooding atmospheres and great metal guitar workouts within the mind of the listener.
John has been quoted as to saying, "After writing and producing numerous KingBathmat albums and more recently the acoustic solo album Unearth, I decided I wanted to create my first instrumental album. I wanted it to be set audibly and visually is a dark, bleak and apocalyptic aura of despair and anger." Well he has almost managed to pull that off  perfectly, the only problem is that the songs are a touch too melodic and multidimensional to come off as really bleak and apocalyptic, but that's not a bad thing. Here with Arcade Messiah we John has produced a great instrumental album that can be enjoyed on so many levels.
Instrumental albums are not for everyone, but if you want to test the water so to speak then you could do far worse than Arcade Messiah!

Rating - 8/10


 
ARCADE MESSIAH have today released their self titled 7 track debut album as a Free (pay what you want) download on bandcamp.
The entire album can now be streamed/downloaded from their bandcamp site at https://arcademessiah.bandcamp.com/releases



AC/DC - Rock Or Bust [full album] (2014)


Genre - Hard Rock / Classic Rock

Track listing:
01 - Rock or Bust
02 - Play Ball
03 - Rock The Blues Away
04 - Miss Adventure
05 - Dogs of War
06 - Got Some Rock & Roll Thunder
07 - Hard Times
08 - Baptism By Fire
09 - Rock The House
10 - Sweet Candy
11 - Emission Control

Well "Rock Or Bust", its been a long time coming, and boy, its been a little eventful as of late in the world of AC/DC!
It has surely been a turbulent time for AC/DC. Guitarist Malcolm Young recently suffered a stroke, which left him with a case of dementia. Also, drummer Phil Rudd is currently facing charges of 'threatening to kill' along with meth and weed possession.
Regardless, AC/DC march forward, promising that neither dilemma will affect the band’s new album nor their upcoming touring plans.
Produced by Brendan O'Brien who was on board for the hugely successful Black Ice in 2008, "Rock Or Bust" opens with the title track declaring: "You hear the guitar sound/playin' nice & loud… in rock we trust, it's rock or bust".
These aren't just musicians, they're rock'n'roll soldiers. Confirmation from the band that Malcolm Young had retired due to the ongoing health issues came with an assurance the band would carry on and that Malcolm and Angus Young's nephew, Stevie Young, would fill Malcolm's role.
"Turn the amps up high ... the crowd's gonna hit the sky"... Brian Johnson howls on the opening title-track, while Phil Rudd's utterly dependable, familiar rock-solid beat is there and Angus' guitar solo kicks in at the two-minute mark like a surgical strike. It's meat and potatoes stuff for one of the biggest, loudest band's in the world, but after a difficult period for them internally, it's a mighty solid start.
"Play Ball", the lead single from the album features a typically solid, unmistakable groove with Rudd and Williams locking into an unshakable rhythm and Angus noodling over the top. Despite being a simple song, Johnson's ferocious wail helps hit this one out of the park, while "Rock the Blues Away" leans more towards a cleaner, gentler (if that's possible) AC/DC; less rocking and more rollicking.
"Miss Adventure", like all 11 songs here punches in around three minutes and comes not just with a cheeky title, but Stevie playing a shuffle that would make Malcolm proud. A hard to forget, catchy chorus has everyone joining in on the 'nah nah nahs' before its all over and hurriedly onto the next track.
"Dogs of War" continues the idea found with the chanting War Machine off Black Ice, while "Got Some Rock & Roll Thunder" sounds less fully realised than other simpler, more immediately attractive tracks on the album.
There's very little if any fat on "Rock Or Bust", it's deliberately lean, the result of a band (or Angus at the very least) knowing exactly what's wanted upon entering the studio and wasting precious little time.
As such, there's also little in the way of the unexpected appearing around a corner, there's no real surprises and certainly no deviation from the formula that's made AC/DC one of the most popular and widely respected rock'n'roll bands of their generation.
In short; this legendary band won't waste your time. "Rock Or Bust", indeed, Rocks.

Very Highly Recommended!

Rating - 10/10