The top 10 of 2015

     2015 is over but it brought us some great new music. Here are my top 10 in no particular order, enjoy:

Stryper – Fallen

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Stryper’s new release, Fallen, is a supercharged release to say the least. For a band that has been around for 32 years they have continued to impress. This record is full of killer riffs and powerhouse vocals. I am totally impressed by the production quality of this record. I was even surprised to see a Black Sabbath cover on here “After Forever” is done very well by Stryper.  The track that grabs hold and will not let go is “Fallen” :

     Check out Stryper online:

https://www.facebook.com/Stryper/?fref=ts

http://www.stryper.com/

Ugly Kid Joe – Uglier Than They Used Ta Be

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     Ahhh Ugly Kid Joe, 19 years after Motel California UKJ is back with a full album. These hold a very special place in my heart and always will. This record shows that UKJ has not lost a bit of the attitude that made them so great. This is rock n’ roll pure and undistilled. The stand out here is “Hell Ain’t Hard To Find”:

     Ugly Kid Joe online:

https://www.facebook.com/uglykidjoetheband/?fref=ts

http://www.uglykidjoe.net/

Throw The Temple – No Way But Down

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     Throw The Temple is a hard working band that takes itself serious without being serious about it. Believe me, every move they make is calculated and planned. After seeing them perform for several years they have finally put out and album to be proud of. Full of deep lyrics and catchy tunes ( I even persuaded them to provide the theme song for the Hellion Rocks) this is an album which should be garnering national attention. Enjoy the video for “We Got It Goin'” right here:

     Throw The Temple online:

https://www.facebook.com/throwthetemple/?fref=ts

http://www.throwthetemple.com/

Devil City Angels – Devil City Angels

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     This record was a complete surprise to me. While technically a “supergroup” it sounds nothing like one. I was ina bad mood the first time I played this record, by the end not so much. This is just a feel good record that you can tell was fun to make.  Comprised of the legendary Tracii Guns, Rudy Sarzo, Rikki Rockett, and Brandon Gibbs, this is a DO NOT MISS record. Here’s the video for “Boneyard”:

     Devil City Angels online:

https://www.facebook.com/DevilCityAngels/

Motorhead – Bad Magic

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     Motörhead has always been a guilty pleasure for me. I have always listened to them and probably always will. I have seen the fairweather fans come and go as the trends change. I was extremely saddened to hear of the deaths of Lemmy and Phil “Philthy Animal” Taylor. This final album from Motörhead is to savor and enjoy.  Take a listen to “Electricity” and pay your respects:

       Motörhead online:

https://www.facebook.com/OfficialMotorhead/?fref=ts

http://www.imotorhead.com/tablet/index.html

Skulldron – Through The Smoke

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     Skulldron rocks, plain and simple. I have known these guys for years and years and enjoyed them immensely. Skulldron falls into the Stoner/Doom metal category and they do it so very well. This is a band that NEEDS some worldwide acclaim. This is another record that SHOULD be in your collection. Well crafted and put together Through The Smoke takes you on a trip to a very cool place in your head. Take a peek at G.O.A.T. :

     Skulldron online:

https://www.facebook.com/skulldron/?fref=ts

http://skulldron.com/

Clutch – Psychic Warfare

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     Clutch is band that, to me, everyone should be running to the store and buying all of their records. Firing on all cylinders and then some,  Clutch  simply rules. This album continues Clutch’s streak of aggressive, hard charging rock. I have one thing to say about Clutch, if you don’t like them, you haven’t listened  to them. Psychic Warfare is a great record to introduce you to the awesomeness that is Clutch. “X-Ray Visions” will whet your appetite:

     Clutch online:

 https://www.facebook.com/Clutchband/?fref=ts

http://www.pro-rock.com/

Dellacoma – South Of Everything

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     Dellacoma Rio, vocalist for Dellacoma is one of the hardest working men in rock n’ roll. Hailing from Australia, Del continually works on world domination. Putting together an outstanding band of three world class musicians: Art Struck, Matt Cook, and Rick Reynolds,  Dellacoma wrote and recorded a well crafted piece of art. No frill, no filler, just straight up feel good music. This is my pick for road music of the year. Put this on, roll down the windows,  and hit the road. Let me show you what I mean:

     Dellacoma online:

https://www.facebook.com/dellacoma

http://www.dellacoma.com/

Red Sky Mary – River Child

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     Red Sky Mary was an accidental find for me. I was completely taken aback by the soul in this young band. It was as if someone jumped into a time machine and collected the DNA from several 70’s bands and somehow fused them into Red Sky Mary. I find so much depth and beauty in this record it amazes me that their are bands still making music that you can truly feel. Here is the latest from Red Sky Mary:

     Red Sky Mary online:

https://www.facebook.com/redskymary/

http://www.redskymary.com/

Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators – Live at the Roxy 9.25.14

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     Slash and crew deliver on this live recording from the Roxy. I f you have never had the chance to catch them live this is the next best thing. Relaxed and fun this record showcases Slash’s and Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators talent. With songs that span throughout Slash’s career from GNR, Velvet Revolver, through today this one is a winner. My favorite track from this record:

 

Slash and the boys online:

https://www.facebook.com/Slash/

http://www.slashonline.com/

     it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s ROCK N’ ROLL!!!

     -the Hellion

So you want to be a promoter?

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So you wanna be a promoter huh? Well you better put your big boy/girl pants on and get ready to work. If you think it’s a cool thing to do and you get to hang out with the band, you have another thing coming.

What exactly is a promoter? According to the internet it says: Tour promoters (also known as concert promoters or talent buyers) are the individuals or companies responsible for organizing a live concert tour or special event performance. The tour promoter makes an offer of employment to a particular artist, usually through the artist’s agent or music manager. The promoter and agent then negotiate the live performance contract.

Let’s be real, most bands these days deal with local “in town” promoters. This means a lot of work for the small time promoter because most don’t really have the money or staff to back them. This also means a lot of upfront money out of pocket for said promoter. First things first, MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE FUCKING MONEY TO PAY THE BANDS!!!!!!! The minute you book a show you should set aside your guarantees. There is nothing more heinous than for a traveling band to get stiffed on their guarantee. Most of these bands are getting show to show on the money from the previous show. Now, let’s talk venue. Make sure you completely check out the venue and ensure load in/out locations, if there is a “green room” for the band, if there is sound equipment and a person to man it (here’s a tip: a good promoter should be able to put their hands on a PA and sound guy in a minute. ALWAYS HAVE A BACK UP, AND A BACK UP BACK UP!) The MINUTE you book a show PROMOTE THE SHIT OUT OF IT!!! This does NOT mean just create a Facebook event page and sit back and expect the masses to show up. Make flyers, call people, hand out said flyers at other shows, hit up the local radio shows, HIT THE STREETS!!! Night of show, BE THE FIRST PERSON THERE!!!! You are the director of traffic for the evening, period. Make sure everything and everyone has a place and they are in it. Make the bands feel welcomed and appreciated (THEY WILL TELL OTHER BANDS HOW THEY WERE TREATED!!!) and they will do their best and will love to work with you again. The fans will come to know that your shows are well run and incredible and the word will spread. There are no excuses for putting on a lame show.

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…

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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

 

 

Dellacoma is back with South Of Everything

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WAKE UP!!! There’s no sleeping when you fire up the new release from Dellacoma. This is a hard charging album straight from the gate!

Loud guitars, punchy bass, powerful drums, and vocals reminiscent of Rock Stars past, it’s all here.

Following the amicable dissolution of the Australian based Sunset Riot Dellacoma Rio found himself at a crossroad.Thankfully for us he chose to continue his musical journey.

Like a superhero,  Del summoned forth a new band of musical warriors to assault the world anew. Gathering fellow Australian Rick Reynolds on bass, and from Dallas Texas: Matt Cook on drums and Art Stuck on guitars, Dellacoma was complete.

They then went to ground and began recording the record that was to become South Of Everything. If you have ever felt music in the past and can remember how it made you feel you will welcome this album.

One can hear the many influences this band pays homage to and yet it remains distinctly unique. I find myself thinking of the swagger of Aerosmith and early Def Leppard to Buckcherry even.

The standout tracks for are “Under My Skin” which opens with drums that remind me of a Saxon tune and then quickly transitions into a sleazy rockin’ tune that is near and dear to me. “FJH (Get Me Out)” has a kind of Motley Crue vibe yet retains the Dellacoma swagger we all know and love. “Fame-Slaves-Gold” will take you back to when Aerosmith was still cool, powerful and bluesy I have hit repeat on this track several times.

Those are a few of the standout tracks for me on the record but believe me there is no filler here. This is the kind of record you want to put on in your car, roll the windows down, drive fast and share with the world.

I am proud to say that I have become close to Dellacoma Rio over the years and have seen the behind the scenes struggle this man has endured to get the music that burns so brightly within him out to the world. Now Del, Rick, Art, and Matt are proud to unveil their recipe for good rock n’ roll to the world.

As a bonus for me I was asked by Del to provide him with a photograph for inclusion in the cover art and I am proud to sat it was used for the back cover and CD face. Thank you for that Del and the gang.

Setting my friendship with Del and the guys aside and basing solely on the music I would give this record a solid 10 out of 10 stars. I say this because of this records ability to transport me to a different time and place, a feat that is hard to come by in this day and age of fast food music.

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Thank you Del, Rick, Art, and Matt for a kick ass rock n’ roll journey!

it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s DELLACOMA!!!

-the Hellion

 

 

 

DELLACOMA signs to Shock Records

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We are very pleased to announce that we have signed our very first record contract! Shock Records will be releasing our debut album “South of Everything” in Australia and New Zealand on 10 April. Unfortunately we still do not have a release date for the rest of the world but the good news is that if you pre-ordered we will be shipping out within the next couple of weeks and even if you missed out on the pre-order you will still be able to order either off the Shock Records website or by messaging the band directly.
This is a giant step forward for us as a band and we are so incredibly grateful for all your support and patience, none of this would have been possible without YOU our dedicated fans. We look forward to seeing many of you soon as we hit the road for more epic adventures.

     DELLACOMA is:

Rick Reynolds- bass
Art Struck- guitar
Matt Cook- drums
Dellacoma Rio- vocals

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     Check out DELLACOMA online at:

http://www.dellacoma.com/

https://www.facebook.com/dellacoma

 

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Check out Shock Records online at:

http://www.shockrecords.com.au/

https://www.facebook.com/shockrecordsaus

     I also feel mighty proud that one of my photographs was used by DELLACOMA for the rear cover!

     it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s ROCK N’ ROLL!!!

     – the Hellion

 

 

Rock N’ Roll is NOT dead Mr. Simmons

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So I recently read the article where Nick Simmons interviewed his father Gene Simmons in Esquire:

GENE SIMMONS: ‘ROCK IS FINALLY DEAD’

The Kiss rocker expands on his thoughts about the past, present, and future of recorded music.

I have a few things to say about this. I have seen that this article has recently been trending on Facebook. I am of the opinion that it is indeed NOT dead.  Gene has pretty much killed the hopes and dreams of future musicians. I remember when music was made for the sake of creating art, the success that followed was a bonus. Imagine if Beethoven or Van Gogh only were only creating art for commercial or monetary gain. That is where the music industry has seemed to have gone. I blame the industry itself for becoming too corporate. If they don’t see an immediate gain for it they don’t see fit to put any money behind it. THAT is the problem. I think that someone that holds the status of Gene Simmons should put his experiences back into helping the industry not discouraging it.

I have a very good friend who is named Dellacoma Rio. He is a vocalist from Australia. He, to me, embodies the spirit of Rock N’ Roll. While he was in previous band Sunset Riot they managed to book shows and gain exposure in the US while still being based in Australia. They toured the US extensively and successfully gaining ground at every turn. Unfortunately due to creative differences and life changes Sunset Riot chose to mutually dissolve. Dellacoma Rio, however, was not done. The spirit and fire of Rock N’ Roll burned passionately within him. With a little bit of reinvention and tenacity he put together a new band and hit the road again. Booking gigs and festivals across the US the newly formed DELLACOMA began the process of making themselves seen and heard. In the midst of touring across the US they took the time to stop and make an old fashioned Rock N’ Roll record. No processing, no extreme overdubs, just raw and fresh. A record that translates to live performances seamlessly. The evening of finishing in the studio they played a gig and set off on the road again. All of this from a gentleman who comes from modest means. There is no one bank rolling this gentleman or his band, just blood, sweat, and tears. Rock N’ Roll is alive and well within DELLACOMA. That is an example of one of many bands I know and love who work equally as hard.

Getting back to Gene Simmons, KISS has always had the opportunity to be trend setters. I feel that they have let us down as of late. When the reunion, and farewell tours were done they had the chance to reinvent themselves and continue to gain new ground. Instead of putting others in the classic makeup they could have invented new “characters” for Eric Singer and Tommy Thayer. It was done before with Eric Carr and Vinnie Vincent. I am of the opinion that what we have now is Diet KISS, or KISS Lite now with 50% less KISS. They have put out two mediocre records and continue to rely on their back catalog instead of searching within and getting in touch with  the part of them that drove them in the early days.

Now, to basically tell young rockers to give up is a pretty crappy thing to say. When Rock N’ Roll was in its infancy there was no one there handing out checks or promoting or playing the music. It was all word of mouth and shameless self promotion. I feel that we have returned to those days. While the internet has been a curse to the industry due to the whole downloading issue it has also allowed bands to use it to promote and reach out on their own. OK in the vast sea of bands putting out their stuff on the internet how do they get heard? Well that falls to people who do what I do and the bands themselves. By taking that step and getting out, touring, not taking no for an answer and promotion, promotion, promotion they can be heard. Is the money still there, of course not,  it is still lining the pockets of the greedy corporations. I’m sure Gene has his pockets full. I challenge those rockers who have “succeeded” to reach out and help bands be heard and succeed in their musical endeavors. There IS new music being made that defies the current slop being force fed to us by corporate radio and the bloated industry, you just have to open your ears and eyes and look and listen for it.  No Gene, Rock is NOT dead by any means, like everything else we just have to work a little harder at it.

 

thump thump, thump thump, THUMP THUMP….

you hear that? That’s the pulse of Rock N’ Roll and it’s still strong.

 

it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s ROCK N’ ROLL…and we love it!

the Hellion