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Great Metal Albums of 1987: TT Quick- Metal of Honor

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on January 16, 2022 by 80smetalman

I’m afraid it’s back to bands who came by and went shortly after, though unlike, Envy, TT Quick would record another album in 1989, but let’s not worry about that now. TT Quick were another band which came to me compliments of my sister sending me tracks of the American metal scene at the time. And of course, the track on the tape led me to explore the band’s album and that’s how I discovered TT Quick’s debut album, “Metal of Honor.”

If the lead singer, Mark Tornillo, sounds familiar, it is because he has been the lead singer for Accept since 2009. That’s the first thing I found amusing when doing my research for the album and band. After the title cut opens the album and grabs your attention, tracks two through five sound as if he is auditioning for his spot in Accept. All of those tracks scream the German band’s name. If more evidence is needed, then the second track, “Front Burner” provides it. Accept have been accused of being AC/DC rip offs, (I don’t think so) but you can not only hear Accept on the track but a bit of AC/DC influence as well. None of this is a bad thing by the way because when you listen to Mark’s vocals through the album, you can hear why he was chosen to replace Udo Dirkschneider, especially on the track, “Child of Sin.”

On the second half of “Metal of Honor,” TT Quick sound a little less like Accept and more themselves. This could be down to the shredding of guitarist Dave DiPietro. While he lays down some cool solos during the Accept phase, he comes into his own on “Asleep At the Wheel” and goes on that way for the rest of the album. After that track, the band goes a bit boogie blues on the track “Come Beat the Band.” Some so-called heavy metal purists might scoff at this track because of its blues swagger but I think TT Quick do a great job on it. Mark shows that he isn’t necessarily a Udo clone and boy does Dave shred! Of course, you got to give full marks to the rhythm section as well as they keep up very well.

Now we come to my favourite track on the album. Proof that my sister and I are on the same metal page because “Hell to Pay” stands head and shoulders above the rest of the tracks. It sounds like it might be a power ballad but the blasting of power chords at the chorus and beyond is just mind blowing. If there is any track where you can say Dave DiPietro is a brilliant guitarist, it is this one. The way he switches between melodic chords and power ones is excellent and then there is his solo, magnifique!

While “Hell to Pay” is the track of the album, the remainder doesn’t go out in a whimper. “Queen of the Scene” is a cool straight-forward metal tracks which keep things chugging nicely. Then we get to “Glad All Over” which is a Dave Clark Five cover. One reviewer of the album hated this track but I like it. Okay, maybe the chorus sounds a bit cheesy but the way TT Quick metalizes this song, especially with Dave’s shredding, who cares? Saying that, it took me several listens before I came to appreciate the closer power ballad, “Siren Song.” It’s one of those tracks which would be out of place anywhere else on the album.

Track Listing:

  1. Metal of Honor
  2. Front Burner
  3. Hard As a Rock
  4. Child of Sin
  5. Asleep at the Wheel
  6. Come Beat the Band
  7. Hell to Pay
  8. Queen of the Scene
  9. Glad All Over
  10. Siren Song

Mark Tornillo- vocals

Dave DiPietro- guitar

Walt Fortune- bass

Erik Ferro- drums

My verdict here is that while “Metal of Honor” is another great metal album which has been forgotten by many, it proved to be a springboard for greater glories for Mark Tornillo and Dave DiPietro as both would have success elsewhere.

Next post: Judas Priest- Priest … Live

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com

Great Metal Albums of 1987: Testament- The Legacy

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 13, 2022 by 80smetalman

So far, I have posted about several bands whose albums caught my attention, or in most cases, my sister’s attention, but came an went with little notice, only to remain in my memory. However, some bands made their debut in 1987 and have hung around since, thrilling us with many great albums and live performances. Testament was one of these bands who launched their debut album, “The Legacy,” and have continued to enthrall us since.

By 1987, thrash bands were coming out of the woodwork in every direction and it would have been easy to simply say Testament were just another thrash band. The thing is, they weren’t and are still not just another thrash band. Not only that, they, along with Exodus, are constantly mentioned when there is talk about expanding the Big 4 to the Big 5. Actually, I would include both bands and make it the Big 6. Then again, I would also include Kreator to make the Big 7. I’m digressing again but with their album, “The Legacy,” it is plain to see why Testament deserve such honours.

“Over the Wall” begins Testament’s full frontal assault on your delicate ears. It is exactly what an opening track to any thrash album should be. It begins with a flurry of speedy riffs before going mad with pounding guitar, bass and drum. Chuck Billy’s vocals blend right in and of course, there is a cool guitar solo. It has everything an album opener needs to make the listener stick around.

The intro of the second track, along with the title gives the impression “The Haunting” is going to be some black metal type of song. The opening riffs are reminiscent of a King Diamond song but things speed up and you are looking for a mosh pit. We also get the first guitar solo trade off between Eric Peterson and Alex Skolnick. A song which could be more akin to black metal, at least with the intro is “Burnt Offerings.” It’s intro sounds very haunting until the guitars really kick in and go total speed metal. There are several good mosh parts as well. Eric and Alex are in tune with one another on the rhythm guitar parts just as much as when they trade off solos.

No haunting intro on “Raging Waters” as it goes straight forward thrash. Still, the theme doesn’t go away as Chuck sings about ‘the devil’s triangle’ and sacrifices that must be done. All of which are done at breakneck speed. The speed only increases on “Curse of the Legions of Death.” With a title like that, you know it’s going to be murderous thrash song, which it is. After an unintelligible spoken word, the drumming of Louie Clemente dominates “First Strike is Deadly.” You could apply the deadly to Chuck’s screams as well.

Maybe because it was the track on the tape Dawn sent me but for me, the song of the album is “Do or Die.” It could also be that many years ago, I had the tape set to go off to my alarm clock and it was on this song. Later that day, my ex wife, asked me what crap I was listening to and told me not to use it to wake up to again. Then again, it does slow down so you can hear the line in the chorus, “I’m the hunter you’re the prey,” sung clearly. Furthermore, it’s a very fast song with some cool guitar solos.

The riffing continues on the penultimate “Alone in the Dark.” I do like how melodic the vocals are at the chorus. Closing track, “Apocalyptic City” starts as if it’s going to be a ballad before some heavy guitars kick in. Then things go total thrash and then a great guitar solo trade off. I won’t get cliche and say it’s a great way to end the album because it makes you remember the entire album.

Track Listing:

  1. Over the Wall
  2. The Haunting
  3. Burnt Offering
  4. Ragin Waters
  5. Curse of the Legions of Death
  6. First Strike is Deadly
  7. Do or Die
  8. Alone in the Dark
  9. Apocalyptic City
Testament

Chuck Billy- lead vocals

Eric Peterson- guitar

Alex Skolnick- guitar

Greg Christian- bass

Louie Clemente- drums

Loudwire cited “The Legacy” as the third best thrash album not made by the Big 4 of all time. Listening to it, I find the statement hard to attack. But it’s easy to see why Testament have stood the test of time and are still around today and would make a welcome addition should they ever expand the Big 4.

Next post: TT Quick- Metal of Honor

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com

Great Metal Albums of 1987: Envy- Ain’t It a Sin

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 9, 2022 by 80smetalman

Before I launch into the album, I thought I’d share another photo of my metalhead granddaughter Juliana.

Ain’t she cute?

Once again, I have to thank my sister for sending me a track on a cassette from a band which would have totally passed me by in 1987. In fact, this post reminds me of two things which was wrong with music back in the 1980s and the first one is probably true today. My last post was about the phenomenal “Hysteria” album from Def Leppard, which received accolades worldwide. Like the album or not, it was a huge success. However, for every Def Leppard there must be at least 100 bands like Envy, who in 1987, had an album just as good but didn’t get the commercial break. This is why I feel it’s even more important to post about their only album, “Ain’t It a Sin.”

The only track from the album that made my sister’s tape was the opening title cut and it’s good. After all, it has stuck in my memory for more than thirty years. However and this is no criticism of my sister, there are better tracks on the album. If there was any track which screams, commercial single, it’s the second one, “I Believe in You.” It has that catchy melody after opening with a keyboard intro that lures you into thinking it’s going to be a ballad but the guitars kick in right after obliterating any such thoughts. If I had seen Envy live, I would have been at the front banging my head and flashing the horns along to it. Oops, it was the 80s, so at the song’s conclusion, I would have held my cigarette lighter aloft. This is the track of the album.

Right after, things get serious with the much harder song, “Heartache.” That sets the tone for practically the remainder of the album as the next few tracks really rock, which brings me to the other thing wrong with music and particularly metal back in the day. Envy is led by the sister combo of Rhonni and Gina Stile. Rhonni handles the vocal duties and does a brilliant job. However, it is Gina on guitar that really steals the show on the album and that was the black eye for heavy metal back then. With the exception of Lita Ford, female shredders were overlooked. Even Kelly Johnson of Girlschool fame didn’t get the recognition she deserved. This was a damn shame because Gina Stile can totally shred and does so on each and every song. Some of her best efforts are on “Lie Here Waiting.” Even her rhythm guitar riffs are exceptional as highlighted on the track, “Wait On You.” She shreds on that track as well.

Gina Stile

I keep asking myself, why didn’t “Ain’t It a Sin” make a bigger impact and Envy become a household name in the metal world? This is the big question, especially since the album was produced by none other than Dee Snider, yes, that Dee Snider. One clue could lie in the record label. The name ATCO rings a bell but I never heard of ATCO/Wounded Bird Records. So maybe the band wasn’t marketed properly or simply it could be down to the fact of an over saturated metal market. In either case, it’s a shame because this is one hell of a fine album.

Another great thing about this album is that it doesn’t tail off at the end. The finish is just as strong as the start. One track which could have been a second single is “I See the Light (Let Me Rock and Roll).” This has a catchy vibe that would have been good for commercial radio but not losing it’s hard rock edge. Once again, Gina shreds magnificently.

Yet another plus is that unlike on many albums, the penultimate track isn’t the least strongest track. In fact, it’s hard to discern which track should get that dishonour because the tracks are that good! “I’m Not Your Lover” is a brilliant track and though they shine on every track, the rhythm section is brilliant here. And the closer, “Hurt Me,” might start out like it’s going to be a ballad but it changes into a rocker, though I do like the acoustic guitar accompaniment.

Track Listing:

  1. Ain’t It a Sin
  2. I Believe in You
  3. Heartache
  4. Lie in Waiting
  5. Wait On You
  6. You’re So Hot
  7. All the Reasons
  8. I See the Light (Let Me Rock and Roll)
  9. I’m Not Your Lover
  10. Hurt Me
Envy

Rhonni Stile- lead vocals

Gina Stile- guitar, backing vocals

Bill Spencer- bass

Danny Kapps- drums

Additional Musicians

Alan St. John- keyboards

Arthur Stead- keyboards

Taylor Dane- backing vocals

I put the title track in for Dawn. May I ask a favour of all of you out there? Could you all go on Youtube and have a listen to the great, forgotten album which is “Ain’t It a Sin” by Envy? I am sure you’ll like it and even if you don’t feel free to comment either way. However, I am confident you will because the big sin is the fact that the album didn’t make the headway it should have.

Next post: Testament- The Legacy

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com

Third Generation Metalhead

Posted in Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on January 7, 2022 by 80smetalman

My son and daughter in law are carrying out my corruption of my grandchildren. This is my granddaughter Juliana.

Great Metal Albums of 1987: Def Leppard- Hysteria

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on January 6, 2022 by 80smetalman

The challenge for me writing about Def Leppard’s 1987 “Hysteria” album is what I can I say or write about it which hasn’t been said before? I mean this album spawned seven singles, went platinum in many countries and gold in a few more as well as going to number one in the charts. Furthermore, the album was finally recorded four years after their previous sensational album, “Pyromania,” in which the band had to overcome the tragic accident which cost drummer Rick Allen his arm and Steve Clark’s battle with alcohol. There was also the problem with producers. Mutt Lange started producing but walked out and Jim Steinman didn’t last. The band tried to produce it themselves but Mutt came back and helped the band make history. So, in many ways, this album was a remarkable triumph for the band.

As soon as I heard the opening riffs to “Women,” I knew this album was going to be a good one. True, many heavy metal purists said that it was a slide away from metal to more power pop but the songs are so good, I don’t care. There is a lot of good metal bits on the album for me to enjoy. The entire first side of the album, (I first got it on cassette), was nothing but the hits. Most of you know them already so I don’t feel the need to go through each one individually. Besides, some of you have written a lot about the album that I fear that I would simply be repeating.

On the subject of metal vs power pop, the one track and it’s my favourite on the album and second favourite Def Leppard song of all time, “Pour Some Sugar on Me” is definitely a heavy metal song. Those power chords just blow me away and yes the way they sing the title in the chorus may sound cheesy to some but this song just knocks it out of the park. A grand slam because the previous tracks load the bases. (For my non North American readers, I’m using baseball terms). In addition, it sets up very nicely for the next track, “Armageddon It.” Love those opening riffs.

With all of the singles, you might be asking which track do I put for hidden gem. Okay, you’re probably not asking that but I’m going to answer anyway. The hidden gem is “Gods of War.” True, nowadays some might think the exploding bombs and machine gun noises in the background are a bit silly but at the time I thought they were cool. I thought the same when they used excerpts from Ronald Reagan’s and Margaret Thatcher’s speeches about the 1986 US bombing of Libya and the Falklands War. On top of that, I really love Rick Savage’s bass line and the guitars on it, great song.

With the exception of the title track, the rest of the second side weren’t singles, even the hidden gem. However, it would be wrong to call any of these tracks filler. They are certainly not in my book. “Run Riot” comes pretty close to being another hidden gem.

Track Listing:

  1. Women
  2. Rocket
  3. Animal
  4. Love Bites
  5. Pour Some Sugar on Me
  6. Armageddon It
  7. Gods of War
  8. Don’t Shoot Shotgun
  9. Run Riot
  10. Hysteria
  11. Excitable
  12. Love and Affection

Joe Elliot- lead and backing vocals

Steve Clark- guitar, backing vocals

Phil Collen- guitar, backing vocals

Rick Savage- bass, backing vocals

Rick Allen- drums, backing vocals

While I don’t agree with those who say that Def Leppard sold out with “Hysteria,” they’re laughing all the way to the bank, I wouldn’t debate those who say that it was the start of the slippery slope away from metal and more into commercial rock. But in 1987, I didn’t give two and a half shits about that, I just really liked the album.

Next post: Envy- Ain’t It a Sin

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobchainsaw@hotmail.com

Great Metal Albums of 1987: Reckless- No Frills

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on January 3, 2022 by 80smetalman

Sometimes some of the tracks on the tapes my sister would send me were somewhat misleading. Often times, I thought that some of these bands were bigger in America than they actually were. Such was the case with New York band, Reckless. The track on the tape was the closer, “Holding On” from their album “No Frills.” I have always liked the song. It’s good straight forward metal. Plus, lyrics like these have always amused me for the past thirty-four years.

JD and Hennessy are old friends of mine

We get together and have a glass

And talk about old times.

As a result, I was somewhat disappointed at the amount of digging I had to do in order to find out the details about this album. My go to sources, Wikipedia, Heavy Harmonies and Metal Emporium did not house them. Fortunately, a general Google search provided the information I required for the post. Saying that, I didn’t need much back story to appreciate their album. Influences can be heard throughout. The opener, “Nitty Gritty” is definitely AC/DC influenced. Maybe a little of The Who as the opening notes do sound a little like their hit “Substitute” but the AC/DC influence is definitely there. The next track, “Wild in the Streets,” has a Judas Priest feel to it while the third, “Deadly Game,” is the closest to a power ballad on the album. It has a slower pace but does speed up in places and a killer guitar solo from Bob Gam.

It is the fourth track that really gets me. It sounds maybe a little too similar to my favourite Twisted Sister song of all time, “You Can’t Stop Rock and Roll.” Then when I read the credits, I discovered why this might be the case. The album was produced by none other than Jay Jay French and Mark ‘The Animal’ Mendoza, yep, those guys from Twisted Sister. In my opinion, the chose the right Twisted Sister song to emulate.

I thought I would put the picture in the post because it was a good shot of Jay Jay French and Mark Mendoza. Twisted Sister come out and play, taken at Bloodstock 2016

The second half of the album, while in no way bad, isn’t quite as good as the first half. I think the problem is that Reckless were so influenced by other bands that they never really stamp their uniqueness on the album. Another example is that the track “Breakin’ Up” sounds pretty much like what KISS was doing at the time and though they do it quite well, there is nothing that screams, “Reckless is different.” It’s a bit of shame because listening to the album, I can say that Reckless are a very capable band. You get some good riffs and solos from Gam. Chris Cintron is a very good vocalist. He doesn’t have to scream but delivers a sound performance on every song. Furthermore, Gary Kriss and Bob Smith make an excellent rhythm section, as good as any out there at the time.

A perfect example of what I am trying to convey is the track “Railroad Alley.” The performance of the band on this track is absolutely phenomenal. However the song is let down by a rather lackluster chorus. Speaking of influence, I do believe I hear a Motorhead influence on “Eye For an Eye” and it’s another example of a great band playing an “it’s all been done before song.” Anyway, Reckless do stamp their own mark on the already mentioned closer, “Holding On.” Even though I have listened to the album four times now, this song is still the best one on the album. They literally save the best for the last.

Track Listing:

  1. Nitty Gritty
  2. Wild in the Streets
  3. Deadly Game
  4. Voices in the Night
  5. Crazy Over You
  6. Breakin’ Up
  7. Night After Night
  8. Railroad Alley
  9. Eye for an Eye
  10. Holding On
Reckless

Chris Cintron- lead vocals

Bob Gam- guitar, backing vocals

Gary Kriss- bass, backing vocals

Bob Smith- drums, backing vocals

Normally I lament over why a band such as Reckless didn’t go further. They definitely had the tools to do so. However, what they needed is better song writing and to find their own niche instead of letting so many influences dictate. Still, this is a good album which should be dusted off and listened to.

Next post: Def Leppard- Hysteria

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com

An Early Happy New Year!

Posted in Death, Heavy Metal, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2021 by 80smetalman

I’m wishing everyone a happy new year a day early as I will be in work on tomorrow and Saturday, can’t resist the double time. Therefore, I will wish everyone a happy and safe new year now and reflect over 2021 as it comes to an end.

Rest in peace Dusty Hill

Always wanting to get the negative out of the way, like with many of the previous years, we lost more of the rock legends we grew up with decades earlier including three in one day! One of those was the legendary bassist for ZZTop, Dusty Hill. Others include Joey Jordison, Mike Howe and Jeff LaBar and there were more. May they all rest in peace.

Of course, outside of music, we still had the Covid to deal with and while things seemed to be improving throughout the year, it appears it has all gone backwards in the end on account of the Omnicron strain. As usual, it’s been a pain in the rear end and we have to make adjustments but hopefully, things will get better in 2022.

My son Will and me celebrating our 60th and 30th birthdays

One major change for me in 2021 was the fact that I have been alive for six decades. Part of me feels like the old man ready to impart wisdom on the youth. Okay maybe not, but I can educate them on heavy metal history. This has led me to get my will sorted although I am waiting for a response from the people at Bloodstock as to whether they will honour my request to have my ashes poured from the Ronnie James Dio Stage when I do depart this world. While I might be an old man, I did receive the compliment while playing in a softball tournament that I moved around the bases pretty well for someone my age. In addition, I had added joy when both of my daughters in law bore me beautiful granddaughters in 2021.

With my granddaughter Primrose. In the foreground is my three year old grandson Alex.
My granddaughter Juliana

As the pandemic seemed to be easing throughout the year, there was a slow but steady return to live music. I have enjoyed reading some of your accounts of the gigs you went to. I managed to get to one at a club in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, when I saw the bands Logoz and Silverjet. Okay, neither band is well known outside the Northeast of England but they both put on a great show that evening.

Logoz in Newcastle

Like the rest of you, I am also looking towards 2022 with careful optimism. I hope that the pandemic will no longer be a inconvenience to our lives and we can move on. In the meantime, I will look forward to reading your posts and hearing what you all have to say about music new and old. BTW, I did get the new Iron Maiden album for Christmas and because of it’s length, I only have listened to the first CD. So far, I pretty much like what I hear.

Happy New Year to all!

Next post: Reckless- No Frills

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com

Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays to All!

Posted in Music, Uncategorized with tags , , , on December 24, 2021 by 80smetalman
My provisions for Christmas

I would like to wish all of you out there a very Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays. I hope you all get all the great music you are wanting. Here’s a couple of Christmas ditties for you.

Merry Christmas!

Great Metal Albums of 1987: Lee Aaron

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on December 20, 2021 by 80smetalman

When I learned that Lee Aaron had come out with a new album in 1987, I awaited it with full optimism. It was my sister who broke the news when she sent me a couple of tracks from her self-titled album. She lamented, “Lee, Lee, what are you dong?” She went onto say that Lee had ‘wimped out’ and added keyboards to her music. When I heard the two tracks on the tape, the first two, “Powerline” and “Hands Are Tied,” I had to agree with Dawn. The keyboards were a little too much for this metalhead back in 1987.

But what about now? And is the album that bad? The answer to the first question is the way the keys were used on the album makes it sound a bit dated. As to the second question, the album is not that bad. While there are keyboards all over the album, there are still rocking moments on it. In fact, what saves the album for me is the guitar work of the very underrated guitarist, John Albani. With his guitar hooks and cool solos, none of the songs suck.

Lee with John Albani

It is true with the opening track, I agreed with my sister but the second track sounded much better and gave me hope for the rest of the album. Coming after, “Only Human” has a strong bass line and a very interesting choir sounding chorus. Lee’s vocals are especially good on this track, not that I expected any less. She was a good a singer as anyone and even today, could sing Kylie Minogue under the table. The next few tracks remind me of her previous album, “Call of the Wild,” which is not a bad thing. You get Lee’s amazing voice leading the way backed up with more great guitar work from John. The keyboards are there but not dominating and because for some reason, I am now able to tune into the bass line more on albums and Chris Brockaway does a superb job on this one.

The track “Don’t Rain on My Parade” is a bit of a paradox for me. It sounds rather 80s synth pop but there is something about it that makes me like it. Then we come to one of the hardest rock songs on the album, “Goin’ Off the Deep End.” This is the track that has me headbanging away to it, even with the keyboard fills. John’s guitar hooks and subsequent solo make this song the rocker that it is. Continuing the one-two-three punch comes the power ballad, “If This is Love.” I never had any doubt that Lee couldn’t deliver a great ballad and this is one if I had had the fortune to have seen her live, the cigarette lighter would have be held high in the air. The final blow is struck with what I think is the hardest song on the album, “Eye for an Eye.” If it wasn’t for the keyboards on the chorus, it would have taken me back to the great album which is “Metal Queen.” Some good guitar riffs on this one as well as the harmony vocals on the choruses.

“Heartbeat of the World” is a great rocking song as well and John plays his best solos on this track, maybe I was a bit premature in picking my favourite track as this one is just as good as “Eye for an Eye.” On the other hand, “Dream With Me” could only be the closer and it’s an all right one. It would feel out of place anywhere else on the album.

Track Listing:

  1. Powerline
  2. Hands Are Tied
  3. Only Human
  4. Empty Heart
  5. Number One
  6. Don’t Rain on My Parade
  7. Goin’ Off the Deep End
  8. If This is Love
  9. Eye for An Eye
  10. Heartbeat of the World
  11. Dream With Me
Lee Aaron

Lee Aaron- vocals

John Albani- guitar, backing vocals

Jim Geicer- keyboards, backing vocals

Chris Brockaway- bass, backing vocals

Randy Cooke- drums, percussion

David Roberts- backing vocals, (tracks 3 and 5)

I ask myself, have I been too hard on Lee for this album? After all, her vocals are as good as ever. My theory is that her record label was so focused on commercial success that they softened her sound a little too much. This album is pretty good but it didn’t make me want to stop listening to “Metal Queen” back then and it doesn’t now.

Next post: Merry Christmas

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com

London’s Aladdin’s Cave of Heavy Metal

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 16, 2021 by 80smetalman

Now that I am back from my weekend of playing Santa Clause to my step-grandchildren in Cleethorpes, I can return to posting about the golden age of heavy metal. However, this post isn’t for an album or event which happened in 1987. Instead it’s about a record store in London called Shade’s. A few years back, fellow blogger Every Record Tells a Story wrote a post about the store and now that it has been several years, I thought I’d put my own spin on it.

The best way I can describe Shade’s is using the words I used in “Rock and Roll Children,” an Aladdin’s cave of heavy metal. Although in the book, I changed the name to “Snakes” so I wouldn’t infringe any laws. It was down an narrow lane, so you had to actually be looking for it in order to find it and once inside the door, the staircase leading down to the main room added to the cave effect. Actually, I think I described it better here than I did when I wrote “Rock and Roll Children.”

Inside Shade’s

Shade’s had everything a metalhead could possibly hope for. Records, tapes, t-shirts and all other types of metal paraphernalia was on sale. I thought it particularly cool when I say a t-shirt of Kreator’s “Pleasure to Kill” album cover. However, I procrastinated and when I tried to buy it a few months later, it was no longer available. The attitude of the sales attendant when I inquired confirmed the belief that Londoners didn’t do customer service very well. They also sold concert tickets as it was there that I bought my ticket to see Possessed, Voi Vod and the English Dogs. Furthermore, while they had the classics, they also seemed to get the albums from the US when they first came out. That’s how I learned of new releases from the likes of KISS, Whitesnake, Billy Squier and the Killer Dwarfs. My one regret is that I wasn’t able to attend when Poison showed up for an autograph signing.

Unfortunately, Shade’s is no more. I heard it had become an internet cafe but I can’t be sure. I also wonder if they had been around in 2010, if they would have sold copies of “Rock And Roll Children.” I hope they would have. Still, I have fond memories of this great store.

Next post: Lee Aaron

To buy Rock and Roll Children, email me at: tobychainsaw@hotmail.com