Archive for Heavy Metal

Great Rock Albums of 1984: TNT- Knights of New Thunder

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 21, 2018 by 80smetalman

You’ve probably guessed that I’ve been off from my main job the past several days or why else would I be able to post three days in a row? That all changes as I’m back in work tonight so before I go, I thought I’d leave it with a post about an album from whom I call my favourite Norwegian band, TNT. Leaves Eyes does come a close second though. I didn’t hear their second album, “Knights of New Thunder” until 1986 and I have to say that I was quite impressed when I did.

“Knights of New Thunder” was the first album to feature American born Tony Harnell, though for some reason, he is credited on the first few TNT albums as Hansen. Anyway, Tony’s fantastic vocal range completed what is essentially a great band. I can totally understand why my sister put him into her band of underrated musicians. Speaking of underrated, guitarist Ronni Le Tekro doesn’t get the true recognition he deserves either. He does hammer out some really amazing guitar solos on this album.

Things open on the album with probably the best known track on it, “Seven Seas.” It seems to be the one most people remember whenever it is mentioned. The reason for this is a no-brainer. Harnell’s vocals shine through straight away supported by Le Tekro’s guitar work. We must not forget the rhythm section of Morty Black and Diesel Dahl who are as tight as any on this album. While “Seven Seas” is the most well known track on “Knights of New Thunder,” the rest of the album is just as good. In fact, the only tracks that might be called filler are “USA” and “Deadly Metal” though I like both of these tracks too. On a personal note, the lyrics to “Break the Ice” were very important to me in late 1986. The title track ranks right up there with the best album closers.

There is one difference in the tracks on the US version and the European version of the album. Having the US one, I was treated to my favourite track on the album, “Eddie,” while Europeans had the track “Tor With the Hammer” which itself is a pretty good track. “Eddie” is a very good power ballad whose lyrics I found very amusing. I think the song is about a deranged dog but I have known humans who fit in quite nicely with the lyrics of the chorus.

“Eddie likes torture and pain;

And Eddie’s crying in the rain;

Eddie’s got a twisted brain;

And neighours think that he’s insane;

Eddie strikes again.” 

Track listing:

  1. Seven Seas
  2. Ready to Leave
  3. Klassik Romance
  4. Last Summer’s Evil
  5. Lost Without Your Love
  6. Break the Ice
  7. Tor With the Hammer
  8. USA
  9. Deadly Metal
  10. Knights of New Thunder
  11. Eddie (Track 6 on the US version)

TNT

Tony Harnell (Hansen in the credits)- lead vocals

Ronni Le Tekro- guitars, backing vocals

Morty Black- bass, backing vocals, synthesizer

Diesel Dahl- drums

Because of “Eddie,” there are two power ballads on the US version of “Knights of New Thunder.” While I prefer “Eddie” to “Lost Without Your Love,” I do think Le Tekro’s guitar solo on the song is amazing. It has been said that “Knights of New Thunder” would be TNT’s last pure metal album as they would go more glam after. My sister was always jealous of the band’s hair. While, I will explore that theory down the line, I will say for now to just kick back on enjoy the delights of this one.

Next post: Deep Purple- Perfect Strangers

To buy Rock and Roll Children, go to: https://crreadac.cf/current/ebooks-free-download-rock-and-roll-children-fb2-by-michael-d-lefevre.html

 

 

 

 

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Great Metal Albums of 1984: Tank- Honour and Blood

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2018 by 80smetalman

A term that has been batted around quite a lot here on 80smetalman is ‘hidden gem.’ In most cases, I use it to describe a song I really like on an album that has a well known single or two on it. On occasion, I have also used the term to describe albums from bands who have more well known albums than the one I am posting about at the time. Now, I’m going to use it to describe a band or two. Whenever the new wave of British heavy metal, (NWOBHM), is mentioned, the first bands that come to mind, even mine, are Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Def Leppard and maybe Saxon. All of them great bands who have given us more than three and a half decades of great music. However as I tour through the years, I have discovered two hidden gems from the NWOBHM age. One I posted about a couple of months ago, Grimm Reaper. The other is brought to you now, Tank. I knew of both bands back in the day and loved them and often wonder why neither of them were as big as the others.

Back in those days, I had become quite diligent in scouring the heavy metal import section at my local record store and that’s where I came across what I think is their best album, “Honour & Blood.” The problem is that I didn’t appreciate it enough back then, so I’m making up for it now. What you get with this album is seven songs of pure metal magic. The shortest song is a mere four minutes and thirty-seven seconds long and there is only one other song less than five. Tank go off on crazy long metal jams which are just superb. There is not one song, even the two that are eight minutes long, where I am thinking that the song has gone on for too long. BTW, those eight minuters are the opening and closing tracks on the album and a good way to do it. Especially so on the closer because it features the very amusing lyrics, “Kill, the poor bastard’s dying.” What a fun way to the close the album, of course the cool guitar solo kind of punctuates it too.

As for the songs in between, they are all great! “When All Hell Freezes Over” is a typical but well done pure metal jam and I’m hooked by the way they sing the chorus. Blistering guitars adorn the title track. “W.M.L.A. (Wasting My Life Away)” and “Too Tired to Wait For Love” are also great metal anthems and more than just amusing titles. However, my favourite track is the cover of the Aretha Franklin hit, “Chain of Fools.” I admit, the rhythm reminds me a little of the Rolling Stones classic, “Satisfaction,” but the song just kicks it.

Track Listing:

  1. The War Drags Ever On
  2. When All Hell Freezes Over
  3. Honour and Blood
  4. Chain of Fools
  5. W.M.L.A. (Wasting My Life Away)
  6. Too Tired To Wait For Love
  7. Kill

Tank

Algy Ward- bass, vocals

Cliff Evans- guitar

Mick Tucker- guitar

Graeme Crallan- drums

The more I reflect back to those years, the more convinced I am that Tank were a hidden gem in the new wave of British heavy metal. They may not have hit it as big as the others, constant personnel changes didn’t help them there, but they left behind several albums, including “Honour and Blood” for us to enjoy.

Next Post: TNT- Knights of New Thunder

To get Rock and Roll Children, go to: https://crreadac.cf/current/ebooks-free-download-rock-and-roll-children-fb2-by-michael-d-lefevre.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Metal Albums of 1984: Whitesnake- Slide It In

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2018 by 80smetalman

Well, here I go! This is my fourth post in as many days and my fifth in the past six. See what happens when a person has too much time on their hands. It is a good feeling compared to when I am so swamped, I worry that I won’t get out my self appointed quota of two posts a week. What better way to end this run than to post about the first Whitesnake album I seriously listened to, “Slide It In.”

One thing I didn’t realize back in 84 that I learned shortly after was that Whitesnake were going through their normal personnel changes at the time the album was recorded. After the recording of the album, both guitarists and bassist would leave bringing in guitarist John Sykes and bassist Neil Murray to play on the US version of the album. As it was the US version I’m most familiar with, the focus of the post will be in light of that.

For those who have Whitesnake’s “Greatest Hits” album, one would believe that they put out loads of power ballads. However, those who delve further into the band’s discography would quickly discover the misconception of that belief. The two tracks on “Slide It In” that comes even close to being a power ballad are “Love Ain’t No Stranger” and the single, “Slow and Easy.” Even those songs only appear to be such at the beginning before going much harder.

The album also leads off with the title track and my all time favourite Whitesnake song. This song demonstrates that Whitesnake has always had it in them to be more than a commercial metal band who played nothing more than power ballads. These days people say that about Bon Jovi but I digress. The rest of “Slide It In” follows in the vein of my all time favourite song. The songs are harder although there is some good melody in them. I like the Jon Lord’s keyboards sound in “Gambler,” especially the way it links up with the guitar solo. “Guilty of Love” is similar to the title track as a metal tune. It would have sounded even better if the guitar on the mix was turned up a fraction higher. Same things can be said for the remainder of the songs for I can see why some people argue that “Slide it In” was Whitesnake’s last real metal album.

Track Listing:

  1. Slide It In
  2. Slow and Easy
  3. Love Ain’t No Stranger
  4. All Or Nothing
  5. Gambler
  6. Guilty of Love
  7. Hungry for Love
  8. Give Me More Time
  9. Spit It Out
  10. Standing in the Shadow

Whitesnake- 1984

David Coverdale- lead vocals

Mel Galley- guitar, backing vocals

Mick Moody- guitar

Carl Hodgkinson- bass

Jon Lord- keyboards

Cozy Powell- drums

John Sykes- guitar on US release

Neil Murray- bass on US release

John Sykes

Was “Slide It In” Whitesnake’s last real metal album? I won’t get roped into that debate, especially when I hear some of the songs from their next album. However, that wouldn’t come out for another three years so it’s hard to judge. What I do know is that I really liked this album and it compelled me to go check out Whitesnake’s earlier material, particularly when I got to England.

Next post: David Bowie- Tonight

To get Rock and Roll Children, go to: https://crreadac.cf/current/ebooks-free-download-rock-and-roll-children-fb2-by-michael-d-lefevre.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A New Metal Discovery- Slave to Sirens

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 10, 2018 by 80smetalman

“Oh my God,” you’re all probably thinking. Is 80smetalman on speed or has he lost one of his jobs? Neither, hwile I admit it is a rarity that I make three posts in as many days. Actually it will be four in four as I intend to write my Whitesnake post tomorrow but this is something I must post about. While originally created to take readers through the history of 1980’s heavy metal and sell “Rock and Roll Children,” I have expanded to reporting on festivals, concerts and to alert people of new metal acts that people might be interested in hearing about. Cue Black Emerald and Hannah Wicklund and the Steppin Stones but this morning I have, thanks to Google Alerts, been led to another cool metal band, Slave to Sirens.

                                                Slave to Sirens

As you can see from the photo, Slave to Sirens are and all female band and that’s important in light of yesterday’s post. I am on a campaign to stamp out sexism in metal, there’s no need for it. However, being all female isn’t the most interesting part about this band, what is more interesting is the fact that they hail from Lebanon. This is a country that has been experiencing its an East-West clash for several decades and has had problems with Islamic Extremists. So, for these girls to play metal and even daring to wear Western style clothing is a testament to the guts these ladies possess. Furthermore, I think that they display these guts in their music. I’ve listened to their four song demo, which I will share at the bottom of the page.

Slave to Sirens is:

Shery Bachara- lead guitar

Tatyana Boughara- drums

Alma Douhmani- bass

Maya Khairallah- lead vocals

Lilas Mayassi- rhythm guitar

Don’t expect any love songs here, just straight forward fast, speed metal. They cement my belief that heavy metal is for all people regardless of race, gender or culture. I think these five ladies would agree with that.

Track Listing:

Terminal Leeches

Humanesticide

Slave to Sirens

Congenital Evil

 

Listen and enjoy!

 

WOMEN IN METAL: I SALUTE YOU

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on April 9, 2018 by 80smetalman

I think this writer hits the nail on the head here.

Atom Smasher Music

5877F79B-former-arch-enemy-singer-angela-gossow-i-want-to-do-a-new-extreme-metal-project-image “What’s a pretty girl like you doing making a horrible noise like that?” 

 “Are you the groupie or the merch girl?”

 “Watching with the sound off cos I don’t wanna listen to your music but I wanna fuck you so bad.”

“Angela Gossow would kick your ass and Simone Simmons is way hotter than you.” 

These are just a few of the comments I’ve received as a woman playing in a metal band. I think I despise the last one the most.

Firstly, Simone Simmons is the fantastic soprano singer in Epica. I play guitar in a post metal band. But, despite having very little in common musically, our appearances apparently *must* be rated against each other.

No one compares the handsomeness of our male guitarist against say, Bruce Dickinson, because they realize how ABSURD and IRRELEVANT that is. They manage to discuss the boys’ vastly different musical merits without…

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Great Metal Albums of 1984: KISS- Animalize

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 8, 2018 by 80smetalman

Since Queensryche supported KISS in late 1984, I thought it only appropriate for the next post to be KISS’s “Animalize” album. Unlike Queensryche, I was able to put more details of their performance on this tour in “Rock and Roll Children.” Although I didn’t actually see the concert, I did get the video of KISS concert for “Animalize,” so that helped me a lot. This was in spite of the fact that the concert on the video didn’t take place in Philadelphia, which was where I went to see all the concerts at the time.

“Animalize” was the second album by KISS without their make up, following on from their previous album, “Lick It Up.” Now, I know KISS themselves along with many others like to downplay this era of Kisstory. True, they were looking more and more like a glam band but then again, so were many bands. However, I don’t think this album was particularly bad, it has its good moments.

The opener, “I’ve Had Enough (Into the Fire)” opens with some metal sounding riffs, which I’ve always liked. The riffs alone make this song the best choice to open the album. Next comes the big single, “Heaven’s On Fire.” No arguments from me that this song was made for commercial radio and MTV. It is too similar to “Lick It Up” but then again, I don’t dislike it either. I just find myself amused at the similarities between the two singles.

“Burn Bitch Burn” is nothing more than a catchy title and a cool guitar solo. It does give weight to the belief that Gene was too sidetracked with other projects and not putting his full attention to KISS. Paul does succeed in making up for it with “Get All That You Can Take.” With all the “ooohs,” one could probably say it was Paul’s best vocal effort. It too has a cool guitar solo and throughout the years, I’ve wondered if Mark St John hasn’t been given the respect he deserves. Saying that, then future band member Bruce Kullick nails the guitar solo on the next track, “Lonely Is the Hunter” and makes me wonder if KISS should have had him play on the whole album. God, thinking about it can give a person a headache, almost. I will say that the track in question is a better effort from Gene, possibly his best on this album.

It seems that KISS tried to be more speed metal with “Under the Gun.” It is definitely the fastest song on the album and the best part is that Paul’s vocals fit the song. Maybe I’ve underestimated his vocal ability these many years. The song does open side two, if you have vinyl or cassette, very nicely and leads to my choice for hidden gem. I know that “Thrills in the Night” was released as the second single on the album but from what I’ve read, it failed to chart. That makes it a hidden gem in my opinion. It’s hard enough to please metalheads but with some good melody and Gene and Eric give great backing to Paul on the vocals and it has a cool guitar solo. Personally, I think the idea for the big single on their next album was taken from it. While I won’t call the remaining two songs, penned by Gene, filler, I won’t say they’re standout tracks. Just two good songs to end the album in the best way.

Track Listing:

  1. I’ve Had Enough (Into the Fire)
  2. Heaven’s On Fire
  3. Burn Bitch Burn
  4. Get All you Can Take
  5. Lonely is the Hunter
  6. Under the Gun
  7. Thrills in the Night
  8. While the City Sleeps
  9. Murder in High Heels

Paul Stanley- rhythm guitar, lead and backing vocals

Gene Simmons- bass, lead and backing vocals

Eric Carr- drums, backing vocals

Mark St John- lead guitar

Additional musicians

Bruce Kullick- lead guitar on “Lonely is the Night” and “Murder in High Heels”

Jean Beauvour (ex Plasmatics): bass on “Get All You Can Take,” “Thrills in the Night” and “Under the Gun”

Say what you want about KISS during their unmasked 1980s period, but I think that “Animalize” isn’t all that bad. It does have it’s good and amusing points but on the other hand, it never made me want to stop listening to “Destroyer.”

Next post: Whitesnake- Slide It In

To get Rock and Roll Children, go to: https://crreadac.cf/current/ebooks-free-download-rock-and-roll-children-fb2-by-michael-d-lefevre.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great Metal Albums of 1984: Queensryche- The Warning

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 6, 2018 by 80smetalman

One problem with going back in history is that it isn’t always easy to put yourself back in that time. In many instances, I’ve listened to albums with a different attitude than I did when I first listened to them when said album first came out. That is the unfortunate case with Queensryche. When I first heard their debut album, “The Warning,” I thought that it was pretty good. However, I wasn’t chalking up the days for when their second album would come out. Then there’s another dilemma. Sometimes having historical knowledge isn’t always good and in Queensryche’s case, it isn’t. See, what I know now that I didn’t know in 1984 was that this band would go onto to achieve some great things. Without breaking sweat, I can think of three Queensryche albums that are far superior to “The Warning” and that isn’t fair to this album because it’s still pretty cool.

My first experience of Queensryche came when my friend introduced me to them after he had seen them supporting KISS. I couldn’t go to that concert because I had to work and that is why my account in “Rock and Roll Children” of their performance that night is what one critic called ‘bare bones.’ I not only had to take myself 25 years back in time but I had to glean knowledge from another person’s memory. Still, I’m sure they kicked ass that evening.

I’ve decided not to review “The Warning” as if I was in 1984 because subsequent recent re-listens have led me to conclude that the debut album was simply a marker for the better things Queensryche would aspire too. The band might have not liked how the album was mixed but I can hear all the trademark elements that make a good Queensryche album. There are the anthems like tracks of “En Force” and “No Sanctuary.” Both of these songs represent what I’ve always liked about this band, as do the opening riffs of “Deliverance.” “Take Hold of the Flame” incorporates a little bit of everything. It has an acoustic intro before Geoff Tate’s vocals take things up a couple of notches. Additionally, the guitar solo of one Chris De Garmo has me agreeing with my sister’s assertion that the band hasn’t been the same since he left.

For me, the second half of the album is the better half. All four tracks are what I can call classic Queensryche metal. There is some interesting harmonizing on “Behold the Storm” and though “Child of Fire” and “Road to Madness” are cool tracks,  my vote for favourite track is “Warning.” It definitely has the catchiest licks of all the songs. It sounds like a true metal anthem and Tate puts his vocal stamp on it perfectly. In reference to the guitars, while I still stand by my remark about Chris, Michael Wilton shows he’s just as good on the axe. Great song!

Track Listing:

  1. N M 156
  2. En Force
  3. No Sanctuary
  4. Deliverance
  5. Take Hold the Flame
  6. Behold the Storm
  7. Child of Fire
  8. Warning
  9. Road to Madness

Queensryche

Geoff Tate- lead vocals

Chris De Garmo- guitar, backing vocals

Michael Wilton- guitar, backing vocals

Eddie Jackson- bass, backing vocals

Scott Rockenfield- drums

Who says a little knowledge is a dangerous thing? If I knew back in 1984 what I know now about Queensryche, I would have called this album, “a promising start.” Because that is exactly what “The Warning” was.

Next post: KISS- Animalyze

To get Rock and Roll Children, go to: https://crreadac.cf/current/ebooks-free-download-rock-and-roll-children-fb2-by-michael-d-lefevre.html