Red Sky Mary – There is hope for new Rock N’ Roll

red Sky mary

I don’t know how I came across Red Sky Mary, but I am glad that I did. The minute I listened to their music it was if a defibrillator shocked me back to life. REAL bluesy Rock N’ Roll music from a new band. The music that I found on you tube took me back to the time when it was all about the music and not the paycheck.  I used my internet detective skills and hunted down their contact info and was rewarded by a quick response from their label Carved Records. In the process of locking down an interview with Red Sky Mary I was given an advance listen to their upcoming release River Child which drops on May 12. River Child is everything I expected and then some! Soulful vocals that reach right in to you and tickles your inner self, LOUD guitar riffs that get the job done with being over pretentious, a rhythm section worthy of the power bands of old, and old school haunting harmonies. Hailing from Portsmouth, NH Red Sky Mary is made up of: Sam Vlasich (Vocals), Tom Boisse (Guitar), Gary Boisse (Bass), Barrett Goeman (Drums).

River Child is a 10 song shot in the arm to straight up Rock N’ Roll. The tracks are:

1. “All Hell’s Breakin’ Loose”
2. “Payback”
3. “Gone”
4. “Run Ragged”
5. “South OF The City”
6. “Howl”
7. “Pride”
8. “I Will Wait For You”
9. “Too Much”
10. “River Child”

     Stand out tracks for me are “I will Wait For You” which reminds me of the Black Crowes in their heyday. Blues based and soulful it drags all kinds of emotions out of you with it haunting melodies and vocals. The Album opener “All Hell’s Breaking Loose” is just that hell does break loose on this raucous track. A feel good rocker that will make you want to gather you best buds and ride around with the windows down and the music cranked. An infectious chorus with have you singing along with your fists in the air. The title track “River Child” carries you along with a cool groove. Again, the vocals and harmonies are top notch and rival many of the great bands from the past. “Howl” which is the lead off single will have you doing just that. Your blood will begin pumping and you will fell the magic of pure Rock N’ Roll course through your body.

     Red Sky Mary has a definite throwback sound to them and yet their sound remains fresh as well. I get the feeling this is band making music for the sake of making music. I would give the new Red Sky Mary release a 15 out of 10 stars in my book. This record has a definite spot in my top 10 of 2015 and is a contender for number 1.

     Some say Rock N’ Roll is dead, I laugh in their faces because bands like Red Sky Mary prove them wrong. Keep Rockin’ fellas because it’s working. Be sure to check them out online at:

https://www.facebook.com/redskymary

http://www.redskymary.com/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCorWo1Wb0EtFkwy9tODdF6Q

http://www.carvedrecords.com/artists/red-sky-mary/

     It’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s Red Sky Mary!!!

     -the Hellion

Skid Row or Skid No?

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rant

     I find myself again in the position of commenting on a band who has made multiple vocalist changes. The first time I heard Skid Row was when I heard “Youth Gone Wild” from their self titled release in 1989. I, like so many others,  was blown away by the powerhouse vocals of Sebastian Bach. Upon further listening I came to realize the talent that the entire band held as song writers and musicians. The three studio releases with Sebastian: Skid Row, Slave To The Grind, and Subhuman Race were all fantastic and still get their fair share of play from me.

     It saddened me when I heard Skid Row had parted ways with Sebastian in 1996. There was a brief stint where Sean McCabe (Shawn Mars) picked vocal duties before they settled on Johnny Solinger.

     Johnny and Skid row released Thickskin, Revolutions Per Minute, United World Rebellion: Chapter One, and Rise of the Damnation Army – United World Rebellion: Chapter Two. I had managed to catch them a couple of times with Johnny and felt he did a bang up job and was a good fit with the band. I even managed to squeeze in an interview with guitarist Dave “the Snake” Sabo with my cohort Charlie Owens. Things were good within the Skid Row camp, or so we thought.

     On April 6th the news was released that Skid Row had parted ways with Johnny Solinger and had picked up Tony Harnell as their new vocalist.

     I am very familiar with the vocal stylings of Tony Harnell and TNT. I have always liked Tony and his voice is powerful and great for Rock N’ Roll music. Would he fit the mighty Skid Row? We would see….

     April 13th 2015- I was forwarded a newly recorded version of “18 And Life” with new vocalist Tony and……was not blown away. While the elements for this formula were all stellar, something about it just fell flat for me. I haven’t counted them out yet as I will wait to see what their NEW work will sound like. I just don’t understand why they had to revisit that classic song.

     So far Skid Row has had five, yes five vocalists:

     Matt Fallon (1986-1987)

     Sebastian Bach (1987 – 1996)

     Sean McCabe (Shawn Mars) (1997–1998)

     Johnny Solinger (1999 – 2015)

     Tony Harnell (2015 –

     Only time will tell if Skid Row has made the right decision with this move. I will always remain hopeful of a Sebastian Bach reunion although I think it will only remain on my wish list.

     Skid Row, or Skid No, what is your take on the matter?

     it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s Rock N’ Roll!!!

     -the Hellion

Talkin’ with UFO bassist Rob De Luca

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Having been a long time UFO fan, I jumped at the chance to sit down with bassist Rob De Luca. I have had Rob on my radar for a few years now and was excited to learn of his addition to the UFO lineup. We had a great conversation and are sharing it with you here:

     Thanks to Rob, UFO, and Jon Freeman for making this happen. Be sure to check out the new UFO release “A Conspiracy Of Stars”.

     it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s Rock N’ Roll!!!

     -the Hellion

Bar Bands, Bar Bands, Bar Bands…2

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First off I want to thank you all for the overwhelming response to last nights Bar Bands post. I was however, reminded of a few more things regarding bar bands and I am addressing them now.

Promoters, you need to do just that. I have seen an unfortunate trend as of late with putting up an event page on social media sites, dusting off your hands and calling it a day. I am sorry that is not good enough, period. I cannot tell you how many times at the last minute I get a message “hey you coming to the show tonight?” and because of the lack of show promotion this is the first time I hear of the show. Shame on you, shame. You are doing the band a complete disservice to say the least. EVERYONE should know about a show you put together.

Club owners, pay the bands a decent rate!!!!! These guys are traveling on their own usually on limited means throughout the country. Club owners wake up because you know they are talking to each other about clubs to play in and which to avoid. Imagine if you treat a band decently and they spread the word and you have bands knocking your door down to play your venue. Word gets around, locals will see the bands are dying to play your venue and will be beating your door down to attend.

Promoters and Club owners, ADVERTISE!!!!!! There are usually on most towns several means of advertising the show.  If people don’t know, they wont go!!! If you work with the advertising outlets I am sure a bond can be made and some kind of deal can be made.

Lastly, remember these bands are providing us a service and we should be thanking them.

it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s Rock N’ Roll!!!

-the Hellion

Bar Bands, Bar Bands, Bar Bands…

rant

Recently a couple of people have made disparaging comments about bar bands. One person in particular  made it known that bar bands were beneath him and a waste of time. Well I am here to tell you that most bands you have heard of and listen to today got their starts in a bar somewhere. Ok, ok there are those few anomalies out there I’m sure who jumped immediately into arena gigs.

The Doors, Motley Crue, the Beatles, Guns N’ Roses, the list goes on and on. These bands played to small crowds at first and honed themselves into arena machines.

Now, in today’s world, arena bands are mostly extinct so the return of the bar/club band is more important than ever. There are several bar/club bands that live in my heart these days. They are there because I have insight as to the blood,sweat, and tears they exude. Their craft is important to them and they are willing to go that extra mile to give their all to their fans. I wish to personally thank the following bands/performers in no particular order: Dellacoma, Nomada, Skulldron, Throw The Temple, Scattered Hamlet, Darken The day, Wulf, Beard, Ragdoll, Crowned By Fire, Mike Araiza,  and many, many more. I salute you all for being the warriors you are and for flying the Rock N’ Roll flag high. All you other local bands, STEP UP!!! And to you naysayers out there, I’ll debate you on camera anytime, you know how to reach me.

it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s Rock N’ Roll!!!

-the Hellion

 

 

Van Halen….again

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1978- Who doesn’t remember when you first heard “Eruption”? Myself and my local group of ne’er do wells were stopped dead in our tracks when we did. It was a sonic assault unlike any we had heard before. How could this be a guitar? Who could be behind this? And when it lead into “You Really Got Me” (being a Kinks fan I knew the track very well.) their rendition blew me away. I finally got my hands on a copy of this tasty piece of vinyl and proceeded to wear it the hell out. The raw power and swagger of this band was unbelievable. I found my self lost in the music and fancied myself a DLR clone. I mustered up as much swagger as I could and failed miserably, there was only one David Lee Roth.

Throughout the years I caught them every chance I could (Van Halen today remains the band I have seen live the most) and was never disappointed. The albums changed and the music evolved as did the members of Van Halen.

Things started going south for me with the 1982 release of Diver Down. Some of the tracks were incredibly awesome, and others left me scratching my head in bewilderment. What was going on here? I sucked it up however, and remained a loyal fan.

1984- WTF?!?!? What happened to my band of badasses? “Jump” really? As much as I tried to like this record it never really happened for me. And then, the king of swagger was gone David Lee Roth was no longer a part of the mighty Van Halen.

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I had been a fan of Sammy Hagar for quite a while when I heard the news of his replacing DLR. I thought to myself “this should be interesting with Sammy being quite an accomplished songwriter and guitarist. I waited in anticipation for the results.

When 5150 hit the stores I snapped it up eager to see what direction they were taking. While not the dangerous “you’re gonna go to jail if you hang out with those guys” band they used to be, it was good. Different but good. Van Halen had become a more mainstream act and it seemed stronger song writers. I found myself at that point in my life more mature as well, and I enjoyed the music. The four studio albums with Sammy gave some great songs and the memories that went a long with them .

Van_Halen_-_Van_Halen_III

And then, like a bad dream, Sammy was out and Gary Cherone (really guys, I thought to myself) from Extreme was in. it was 1998 and was a 34 year old family man now but still a loyal rocker. I put aside my misgivings and entered Van Halen III with an open mind. I actually found this record quite good, a departure from the VH sound but good. And then, again, Gary was out and so was Michael Anthony.

Van Halen then kind of faded away in the eyes and ears of most people. They remained ever present in the rotation of music that I played, never far from my ears. Rumors and stories abounded but never came to fruition.

A couple of Reunions with Hagar and Roth came and went and rumors of new album with Roth began. In 2012 we finally got A Different Kind Of Truth and learned that Wolfgang Van Halen was now the bassist for Van Halen. It was through this record I realized my precious Van Halen was no more.

I had been there though it all: Van Halen, Van Hagar, Extreme Van Halen, and now Van Halen3 plus Dave.

In the past few days Van Halen has been asplash on the internet with their appearance on Jimmy Kimmel. I watched with baited breath hoping to catch a glimpse of my heroes of old. Alas, I was disappointed and a little embarrassed for them. While Eddie as usual had killer tone and chops, and Alex still brought the thunder, Young Wolfgang was no Michael Anthony, and David Lee Roth, well, let’s just say sometimes it’s better to leave on a high note. I will not speak of the current Sammy project because this was about me and Van Halen and I want to keep it that way.

I will always love and respect the music Van Halen has given me throughout the years and yes I will buy any and everything they release, I just feel that it’s time to move on for them….

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Van Halen I love you guys (all of you) now and forever

-the Hellion

 

 

This just in from the Megadeth newsdesk!

CHRIS ADLER of LAMB OF GOD Joins DAVE MUSTAINE in the Studio for New MEGADETH Album

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Dave Mustaine, the creative driving force behind original American metal and hard rock crossover giants MEGADETH, and Chris Adler, drummer for the leaders of modern American heavy metal LAMB OF GOD, will join bassist David Ellefson in the creation of MEGADETH’s anticipated forthcoming album. Adler will be appearing as a guest on the album and contributing his thundering, hard-hitting, and technically precise style and skill, adding new blood and drive into the mix while staying true to MEGADETH’s roots.

Dave Mustaine comments, “Chris is a tremendous talent, and an amazing person. He is going to bring a new level of excitement and energy toMEGADETH that the fans are going to lose their minds over. I have nothing but respect for my previous drummers, but this is going to absolutely KILL! Back in 1989, MEGADETH originally worked as a three piece – guitar, bass and drums – when we laid down the framework to our GRAMMY® nominated platinum album ‘Rust In Peace.’ I want to thank the other members of Lamb Of God for allowing this opportunity to take place for all of us in the metal community.”

David Ellefson adds, “Chris has been an endearing friend to us in MEGADETH for many years now, and he truly appreciates our music and its legacy. His drumming has forged such an innovative and ferocious path for metal music and I’m very proud that he is anchoring our rhythm section with us on this new album. I can clearly see a new dawn of ‘utmost heaviness’ unfolding in MEGADETH’s next chapter.”

Chris Adler offers, “MEGADETH was the game changer for me. Growing up, there was no other band that meant as much to my musical interest and direction. There is no doubt I would not be doing what I have been doing for the past three decades had I not stumbled across ‘Killing Is My Business’ and the bible of all metal, ‘Peace Sells‘ in my formative years.”

“About 10 years ago, LAMB OF GOD toured with MEGADETH and I was able to share that story with Dave and David, and we have kept in touch ever since,” adds Adler. “When Dave called me a while ago and asked if I was interested in making a thrash metal album with him, I felt like I must’ve been on a hidden camera show. “I was trying to play it cool, but I was speechless other than YES! Once I called my wife and my band guys to let everyone know, I had some time to really think about it and how I can best fit into this situation. I’m coming into this on fire. There is an incredible amount of respect, but the goal here is to make the very best thrash album we can. Together, I believe we can do something very special! Get ready for a very exciting chapter in the MEGADETH legacy.”

The new album is the follow up to MEGADETH’s 2013 release, Super Collider. Super Collider hit No. 6 on The Billboard 200 and No. 3 on both the Top Rock Albums and Top Hard Rock Albums charts consecutively. To date, MEGADETH has sold more than 38 million albums worldwide and has scored five Top 10 albums, two Top 5 releases.

http://www.megadeth.com

https://www.facebook.com/Megadeth

      it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s MEGADETH!!!!

     -the Hellion