Bob Kulick talks Skeletons In The Closet

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It’s not every day you get the chance to talk with a legend. When we were offered the opportunity to talk with Bob Kulick, I immediately thought Mike Araiza would be the perfect host for this interview. Boy was I right, you can check out the stellar interview below.

Make sure you also check out Bob’s new record “Skeletons In The Closet” which  will be released on September 15 through Vanity Music.
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it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s Rock N’ Roll!!!

(Bob Kulick Style!)

-the Hellion

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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

Devil City Angels releases a really fun debut record

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You ever listen to a record and “feel” the fun that was had in making it? I heard rumors of this band and have been patiently awaiting their debut release.  I am fortunate and have the opportunities to have spoken with Rikki Rockett, Tracii Guns, and Rudy Sarzo (Rudy replaced previous bassist Eric Brittingham) during the past several years so I know of their enthusiasm and passion for music.

I have been listening to this record for a while now and find myself returning to it again and again. Let’s get one thing straight right out of the gates: there is no trace of L.A. Guns, Poison,  Cinderella, or Quiet Riot on this record. It’s just good old fun Rock n’ Roll!

I received this record at work and was a captive audience for it on my 90 minute drive home. From the opening notes of “Numb” to the closing of “Bad Decisions” it grabs you and makes you feel like you were actually sitting in the studio having a good time while they were recording.

It seems to me that more and more “seasoned ” artists are getting back to their roots and getting involved with these kind of projects. Rikki Rockett’s drumming shines throughout this project. Many people seem to have written Rikki off because of his work in Poison. He is really a heavy hitter and very talented. I have been a Tracii Guns fan since forever and he steps outside of his normal playing and brings us some solid feel good riffs here. While Rudy Sarzo has taken over bass duties Eric Brittingham was the one who laid down the heavy groove this record brings. Brandon Gibbs is unknown to many but brings a style that fits the vibe of Devil City Angels to a T.

The track listing is as follows and I can’s recommend any one track above any other because this is a whole package that should be enjoyed in its totality. So grab this record, your best girl/guy, your friends, the car keys, and just drive around and listen.

 1. Numb

2. All My People

3. Boneyard

4. I’m Living

5. No Angels

6. Goodbye Forever

7. Ride With Me

8. All I Need

9, Back To The Drive

10. Bad Decisions

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Rudy Sarzo, Brandon Gibbs, Tracii Guns, Rikki Rockett

     This is one record that gets a 15 out of 10 stars folks, seriously. Check out Devil City Angels online at:

https://twitter.com/devilcityangels

https://www.facebook.com/DevilCityAngels

      Check out the track “All My People” right here:

     it’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s DEVIL CITY ANGELS!!!

     -the Hellion

Immortal Randy Rhoads – The Ultimate Tribute – DVD thoughts and review

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September 27 1980- My friend Brett came over to my apartment to hang out with me on my 16th birthday. He smiled as he handed me a wrapped package. I eagerly tore the wrapping off to discover the Blizzard Of Ozz record. “I knew you loved Sabbath so I saw this and figured you would enjoy it.” We raced to my room and found ourselves entranced by the music. I was most impressed by the guitar playing album on this record. The passion and power of the guitar playing on it was enough to make me weep. Brett and I instantly became Randy Rhoads fanatics. A lot of our friends were Eddie Van Halen nuts through and through, but there was something a bit more magical about Randy Rhoads for me. We read everything we could find and tried our best to wear out my copy of Blizzard Of Ozz.

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When Diary Of A Madman came out in late 1981 I was there at the record store and raced home to hear what Randy had come up with to blow our minds, I was not disappointed in the least. This record too found itself being quickly worn out on my turntable. Again, I read every bit of press, had the posters, t-shirts, and all of the necessary accessories. Brett and I even figured out the secret codes on the album. Then, miracle of miracles, Ozzy was coming to our town!!! I did odd jobs to earn my $8.50 for my ticket. We went and positioned ourselves in front of Randy and witnessed a show that has yet to be repeated. The way Randy commanded the stage was sheer magic, and the way he played the songs live was utter brilliance. We left the show elated and sold that Randy was the greatest guitar player ever. Then, three months later he was gone, and I openly wept.

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         Now in March of 2015 I find myself watching a DVD about people who were influenced by Randy and his music. Kelle Rhoads let us into the world that he and his brother developed their musical skills in by walking us through the legendary Musonia Music School. Kelle told us of  how his mother, Delores, influenced Randy to audition for Ozzy. He also shared some moments of the younger Randy and himself performing is the school. I really felt the emotional bond and the sense of loss Kelle has for Randy when he showed the room where Randy taught guitar. It was stated that the room has been restored to the way it was when Randy packed up and left for his gig with Ozzy. It is truly a room frozen in time.

     The legendary Bob Kulick hosts Bob’s interaction with Kelle was enlightening and I learned new things about Randy. Bob spoke with drummer Frankie Banali and I learned things about the formation of the Ozzy solo band that I never knew. Dana Strum? Frankie’s involvement? You have to watch it and see. Hearing the stage stories from my friend Rudy Sarzo was amazing as well. Bob talks on with George Lynch, Doug Aldrich, Dweezil Zappa, Joel Hoekstra, George Lynch. Bruce Kulick, and Jon Donias. They all tell how Randy affected them musically.

     This DVD has led me to appreciate Randy “the person” more than I previously had. It is quite obvious how much his peers loved and respected him.  I am glad that the time was taken to produce this in tribute to the great Randy Rhoads who continues to live on inside me and others who listen and truly appreciate his musical legacy.  Please be sure to pick this up and allocate an hour and a half to learn about and share the life of this great musician and human being, you will NOT be disappointed. Randy truly is immortal.

     it’s loud, it’s beautiful, it’s Randy Rhoads

     -the Hellion

Announcing “Immortal RANDY RHOADS – The Ultimate Tribute” – A Celebratory Album Feat. All-Star Guests SERJ TANKIAN, TOM MORELLO and More‏

Announcing “Immortal RANDY RHOADS – The Ultimate Tribute”

A Celebratory Album Feat. All-Star Guests SERJ TANKIAN, TOM MORELLO and More

 

Out March 3, 2015 via UDR Music

 

The Late Legendary Guitar Hero Memorialized in Sensational Cover Tracks

 

Featuring an All-Star Line-Up of Music Greats:

TOM MORELLO

SERJ TANKIAN

RUDY SARZO

FRANKIE BANALI

VINNY APPICE

TIM “RIPPER” OWENS

CHUCK BILLY

ALEXI LAIHO

GEORGE LYNCH

GUS G.

BRUCE KULICK

DOUG ALDRICH

DWEEZIL ZAPPA

         BERNIE TORME              

JON DONAIS

BRAD GILLIS

… and More

 

Album Includes Bonus DVD w/ Artist and Producer Interviews and More

 

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One of the most venerated guitarists ever to grace hard rock music, the late, great Randy Rhoads (heralded as the legendary lead guitarist forOzzy Osbourne and Quiet Riot) will be celebrated in the truest of fashions with the release of Immortal Randy Rhoads – The Ultimate Tributeon March 3, 2015 via UDR Music.

 

A collection of 11 classic Rhoads co-written songs, Immortal Randy Rhoads – The Ultimate Tribute is performed by twenty top contemporary artists, including old friends and performing partners Rudy Sarzo and Frankie Banali, his brother Kelle Rhoads and more designated musicians like Serj Tankian, Tom Morello, Vinny Appice, Tim “Ripper” Owens, Chuck Billy, Alexi Laiho, George Lynch, Gus G., Bruce Kulick, Doug Aldrich, Dweezil Zappa and others.

 

The album was produced and compiled by the Grammy-award winning guitarist and producer Bob Kulick at his own studio.

 

Along with the album, Immortal Randy Rhoads – The Ultimate Tribute will also contain a bonus DVD available in the digipack version, including interesting interviews with some of the involved artists, hosted by Bob Kulick and a feature on the Musonia School of Music, a teaching school on North Hollywood, California, set up by Randy’s mother and run by his brother Kelle Rhoads.

 

Pre-order details coming soon! Immortal Randy Rhoads – The Ultimate Tribute will also be available in double vinyl gatefold and digital formats.

 

 

Full track listing with performers:

 

1. Crazy Train

Vocals: Serj Tankian

Gtrs:  Tom Morello

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums:  Vinny Appice

 

2. Over the Mountain

Vocals: Tim “Ripper” Owens

Gtrs: Jon Donais

Bass:  Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Frankie Banali

 

3. Mr Crowley

Vocals: Chuck Billy

Gtrs:  Alexi Laiho

Keyboards: Kelle Rhoads

Bass Rudy: Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Vinny Appice

 

4. Believer

Vocals: Tim “Ripper” Owens

Gtrs:  Doug Aldrich

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Vinny Appice

 

5. Back To The Coast (Quiet Riot)

Vocals: Kelle Rhoads

Gtrs:  Bruce Kulick

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Frankie Banali

 

6. I Don’t Know

Vocals: Tim “Ripper” Owens

Gtrs: George Lynch

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Brett Chassen

 

7. S A T 0

Vocals: Tim “Ripper” Owens

Rhythm guitars: Bob Kulick

Lead guitar: Dweezil Zappa

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Vinny Appice

 

8. Killer Girls (Quiet Riot)

Vocals:  Tim “Ripper” Owens

Gtrs: Joel Hoekstra

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Brett Chassen

 

9. Goodbye to Romance

Vocals: Tim “Ripper” Owens

Gtrs: Gus G.

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Brett Chassen

 

10. Suicide Solution

Vocals: Tim “Ripper” Owens

Gtrs:  Brad Gillis

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums: Brett Chassen

 

11. Flying High Again

Vocals: Tim “Ripper” Owens

Gtrs:  Bernie Torme

Bass: Rudy Sarzo

Drums:  Brett Chassen

 

 

A lover of classical music, Rhoads had taken initial steps into rock’n’roll as a 16 year old when he formed a band, that soon became Quiet Riot. Rhoads was vaulted to the limelight in 1979 when Ozzy Osbourne chose the relatively unknown guitarist to help shape a new future for him via his band, Blizzard of Oz. The result saw Rhoads co-script two of the most famous albums in hard rock history, Blizzard Of Oz and Diary of A Madman, and rapidly ascended the stairway of fame and recognition for his virtuoso playing and writing. Famed for the way he fused classical flavors with technically-excellent hard rock, Rhoads became one of the most influential lead guitarists in rock.

 

When he tragically passed away on March 19, 1982 in a plane accident, Rhoads was only 25 years old, but thankfully, the legend of his work, ethos and their continuing influence on a whole new generation of guitarists, has never dimmed.

 

Celebrate the life and legend of Randy Rhoads with Immortal Randy Rhoads – The Ultimate Tribute.

 

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

     -the Hellion

 

 

Mike Araiza covers Geoff Tate’s Queensryche in Albuquerque, NM!!!

I am fortunate with the accomplishments achieved on the Hellion Rocks. I am proud to work with and call people like Charlie Owens and Randy Norris my brethren in arms with this crazy world of Rock N’ Roll journalism. I am now pleased to announce the addition of Mike Araiza to the fold as a guest correspondent. Mike was gracious enough to cover the Geoff Tate fronted Queensryche for me while I am away in New York. Here is Mike’s coverage so enjoy:

     When a living legend TAKES HOLD of the stage

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In a world of smartphones, tablets, online streaming and disposable trends I was
excited to drive up to the Sunshine Theater in Albuquerque, NM and see a line around
the building for a Rock show. Excitement was definitely in the air to see the one and
only Geoff Tate and his band of living legends which consists of Randy Gane
(keyboards), Kelly Gray (guitars,vocals), Robert Sarzo (Guitars Vocals), Simon Wright
(Drums) and the one and only Rudy Sarzo (Bass Vocals). By the time I got to the photopit
the venue was packed like I have not seen in a long time even to upper level was
full. I could hear fans talking about their favorite song(s) and discussing the hope to
hear them all. I even overheard the “ I saw ’em in 199x in Colorado” stories man I am at
a real rock show with which looks like a sold out venue!
The moment I never get tired of comes. Boom, house lights go off and the crowd erupts
into a loud roar of anticipation man this is what it is all about. The entire band struts out
with pure swagger (think of Jordan walking on the court for a finals game). To be honest
I was absolutely star struck by all of them and the crowd was so epically loud and full of
excitement I had a hard time remembering that I was there to take pictures. Within a few
bars of musical excitement the band forms into a visual balance and Geoff Tate takes
hold of center stage belting out THAT voice which we all grew up on also demonstrating
the true craftsmanship of being a legendary frontman. Not to mention, this band is
opening up a can of rock n’ roll whoop ass. Mix is tight, drums are thundering, bass is
locked hard with the drums, guitars are loud and punchy, keyboards sound fresh. I now
know why Geoff Tate recruited these guys! Chemistry is off the charts here folks!
Each song is accompanied by the crowd singing at the top of their lungs with fists
pumping in the air (which the entire band really appreciated I could see it on all of their
faces you guys kicked ass Albuquerque). It is important to note that each song was
played exactly like the respective albums. This band is loaded with a group of artists
that have been around the world with AC/DC, Ozzy, Quiet Riot just to name a few and
the stage presence shows it as well. After 90 minutes of mind-blowing Rock N Roll and
two outrageously killer encores it was time for the after show meet and greet. I watched
the entire band gracefully sign autographs, take pictures, have conversations with the
fans, this was really cool to watch. Nothing but humble and appreciative vibes going on
with this band. Geoff Tate was a pleasure to meet and was a true gentleman as was the
entire band. In closing I urge you to buy a ticket and go see this band when they come
to your area also check into the VIP as well. Last but not least a huge thanks to James
“The Hellion Rocks” for this awesome privilege and a huge thanks to Geoff Tate and his
team. Rock N Roll is a gift let’s keep giving it…
~ Mike

A tale of two Queensrÿches

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A long time ago on a radio station far away…

I heard a song that caught my attention and drew me in. It was 1983, the song was “Queen Of The Reich”,  and Queensrÿche was the band. Over the years I grew to love the music and eagerly snapped up each and every release. In my humble opinion their music evolved, growing better and better which each new album.

The elements of  Queensrÿche were Geoff Tate on vocals, Chris DeGarmo on guitars, Michael Wilton on guitars, Scott Rockenfield on drums, and Eddie Jackson on bass. This lineup wrote some great, long lasting music that will forever remain in my heart.

Things were great for them until 1998 when Chris DeGarmo left the band. The salad days were over…

Various guitarists came and went in the following years, and then in 2012, the band parted ways with Geoff Tate and Todd La Torre was his replacement.

This is where the trouble started. I tried to stay out of making any statement on the whole mess but I recently read some articles on it and decided to finally weigh in on the subject.

When a band loses someone readily identifiable as their lead vocalist it is quite apparent. Some bands have managed to pull it off successfully (Van Halen, AC/DC for example). While I am familiar with Todd and his voice, he is no Geoff Tate and I feel he has been pushed into a situation where he is trying to live up to Geoff and not develop his own style. While Geoff has had to gather musicians around him to recreate the Queensrÿche sound. What are we left with? In my opinion, watered down versions.

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2013 brought us two Queensrÿche records Frequency Unknown from the Geoff Tate version, and the self titled Queensrÿche from the Todd La Torre version. Here’s where I start pissing some people off. I feel that these two records are mediocre at best, there I said it. Each record has its good points but ultimately both fall short of the mark for the Queensrÿche legacy. I also feel that the inclusion of rerecorded classic Queensrÿche songs on each record were a feeble attempt by each lineup to try and show each other up.

What to do, what to do? I think both Queensrÿches need to take note of what the current lineup of Thin Lizzy has done. The band took stock of what had been and what was to be and made the decision to rebrand themselves as Black Star Riders. This allowed the freedom to create new music under the new name and play the classic Thin Lizzy songs keeping the legacy intact. The guys in Velvet Revolver moved on and still payed tribute to their previous bands as well.

While the Todd La Torre version did briefly appear as Rising West they dropped that and returned to performing under the Queensrÿche moniker. I think that they should have stayed n that path and become a new band and moved forward with it and still honored the Queensrÿche history in their live performances.

The Geoff Tate version should have done the same thing. Geoff and his new crew should have found a new identity under a new name and moved forward as well and honored Queensrÿche in their live performances as well.

Don’t get me wrong, I have the utmost respect for all of the musicians involved and the Queensrÿche legacy,  in fact I have the Tri-Rÿche logo tattooed on my arm, but I feel all parties involved need to let it go and move forward. 20140404_062220_1

 

    ” Your heads in overload.
You’ve reached your threshold
and you’re about to explode.

Open your eyes. Just say what you want to say?
Open your eyes, you see yours isn’t the only way .
Open your eyes. To you everyone is blind.
Open your eyes and your mind.”

     Rest In Peace Queensrÿche – the Hellion