Talisman – ‘World’s Best Kept Secret’ (2005) – DVD Review (The Jeff Scott Soto Series)

Back in 2003, Talisman hit the Festival Circuit in Europe and a lot of those shows were recorded. Two shows in particular were captured and were finally released by Frontiers Records in 2005. We got a Live CD, which we reviewed last week, and then a DVD set. Today, we review the DVD set. The DVD set was called ‘World’s Best Kept Secret’ and was a 2DVD set. The first DVD giving us the two shows released on the CD and the 2nd DVD giving us a retrospective of Talisman and including all the videos from throughout the years plus pieces of several other live shows. It is magnificent set and a great time capsule of a band that was not know across the globe and is one of my favorite bands which is why I think the title to this set is more than appropriate. They were like a little secret that I had and I wish more people knew about them when they were around as I think they are awesome. I have tried to tell the world about them now with this Jeff Scott Soto Series so hopefully I make a few new fans from this series.

The two shows captured were at Club Mondo in Stockholm, Sweden in August 2003 and the second show was from the Sweden Rock Festival from June 2003. This would be the 2nd Sweden Rock Festival live show we’ve been given from the band. The line-up was interesting as the band was usually a 4-piece band. This time we have the return of the great axeman, Fredrik Akesson as Pontus Norgren had left. The other interesting was they added a fifth member with Howie Simon on guitar. Howie at the time was Soto’s solo band’s guitarist and friend.

If I had to pick to listening to the CD or watching the DVD for these two shows, I would pick the DVD any day of the week. The CD is fantastic and I rated it as such, but the DVD lets you see the action going on with this cast of characters on stage. Jeff Scott Soto is a mad man and his energy level is 110% the whole show. He starts off fully clothed but by the end he only has pants on as he sweated up enough to fill a kiddie pool. You get to see the great drumming by Jamie Borger, Howie Simon’s great playing and that fast finger work by Fredrik Akesson. And of course, you can watch Marcel Jacob pound on that bass like so few people can do. It is totally brilliant. You feel the energy feeding off the band and the crowd.

Continue reading “Talisman – ‘World’s Best Kept Secret’ (2005) – DVD Review (The Jeff Scott Soto Series)”

My Sunday Song – “How Did You Love?” by Shinedown

For My Sunday Song #328, we will dive in to the song “How Did You Love?” by Shinedown. The song is off their 2015 album ‘Threat to Survival’. It was released as a single on October 4, 2016 and went to #1 on the Mainstream Rock Chart. It was written by Brent Smith and Scott Stevens who you know from the band The Exies. He’s also co-written a ton of songs and a lot with Halestorm on their album ‘Into the Wild Life’.

The song is about making sure you understand that you are going to die and being okay with that. Once you are, make sure you live each day to the fullest. When you think back, are you at peace with how you loved during your lifetime. Are you comfortable with that? If not, do something about it. Go out inspire people…and love people.

The song starts off with a slow melody that keeps building with the vocals. It is accented with a beautiful piano and some great rhythm guitar by Zach Myers. The song explodes at the chorus and it turns in to an 80’s power ballad in style. Barry Kerch’s drums are powerful, almost tribal. Brent’s vocals are melodic and heartfelt as they sweep through the verses and soar in the chorus. I love a good power ballad and this fits that mold nicely. The band also released an acoustic version of the song that is quite haunting and beautiful. Check it out as well.

Give the song a listen and let me know what you think. Are you happy with how you’ve loved? I also included the acoustic version as well for your listening pleasure. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you all have a wonderful and Happy Sunday.

“How Did You Love?”

You can have the sound of a thousand voices calling your name
You can have the light of the world blind you, bathe you in grace
But I don’t see so easily what you hold in your hands
Cause castles crumble, kingdoms fall and turn into sand

You can be an angel of mercy or give into hate
You can try to buy it just like it every other careless mistake
How do you justify I’m mystified by the ways of your heart
With a million lies the truth will rise to tear you apart
Woah!

No one gets out alive, every day is do or die
The one thing you leave behind
Is how did you love, how did you love?
It’s not what you believe; those prayers will make you bleed
But while you’re on your knees
How did you love, how did you love, how did you love?

Nothing ever feels quite the same when you are what you dreamed
And you will never look at anything the same when you see what I see
How we forget ourselves, lose our way from the cradle to the grave
You can’t replicate or duplicate, gotta find your own way
Yeah!

No one gets out alive, every day is do or die
The one thing you leave behind
Is how did you love, how did you love?
It’s not what you believe; those prayers will make you bleed
But while you’re on your knees
How did you love, how did you love, how did you love?

This ain’t no cross to carry
We are the judge and jury; we are the judge and jury

No one gets out alive, every day is do or die
The one thing you leave behind
Is how did you love, how did you love?
It’s not what you believe; those prayers will make you bleed
But while you’re on your knees

How did you love, how did you love, how did you love?

This ain’t no cross to carry
We are the judge and jury, we are the judge and jury

How did you love, how did you love?
How did you love, how did you love?

Written by Brent Smith and Scott Stevens

Hall & Oates – “Out of Touch” – 7″ Single

In my journey through the 7″ Singles in my collection, we are to one I don’t know when or where I ever bought this one. The single is for Hall & Oates song “Out of Touch”. I do like Hall & Oates and this song so I’m sure I bought it, but for the life of me can’t remember anything. I do know this was the first single off the band’s 1984 album ‘Big Bam Boom’. It was the band’s last #1 song and it was their 14th Consecutive Top 40 hit since 1980. That was a pretty impressive run.

The song was written by Daryl Hall and John Oates. The chorus had come to John when he was playing around on his synthesizer and thought it would be great for the band The Stylistics since had this whole Philly swing to it. The producer of their album, Bob Clearmountain, thought differently the next in the studio and said they have a hit. Well, he was right, they did.

My copy is the standard U.S. version and the B-Side is another album tracks called “Cold, Dark And Yesterday”. What I find interesting about my copy is the wear & tear on the piece of vinyl. Is that circular fading a result of being played a million times in a Jukebox or regular turntable. I would think a Jukebox as whatever was grabbing it wore off the label. But it still plays beautifully with no pops or any other noises.

Continue reading “Hall & Oates – “Out of Touch” – 7″ Single”

Friday New Releases – December 2, 2022

We are getting closer to Christmas and the end of the year so releases tend to start slowing down and this week is pretty slow. A couple great box sets coming and I can’t believe Kenny Wayne Shepherd’s album ‘Trouble’ is 25 years old already. I think I’ll give that one a listen for sure. Let me know what you want to hear this week and what we may have missed on the list. Thanks for stopping by and next week will have a few more releases then this week.

  • 81vqT8FPJoL._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  Kenny Wayne Shepherd – Trouble is 25 – (Mascot Label Group / Provogue)
  • 81L+W--B49L._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  Janis Joplin & Jorma Kaukonen – The Legendary Typewrite Tape: 6/25/64 Jorma’s House – (Fantility Corp & Jorma Kaukonen / Omnivore Recordings)
  • 811uUJhGR8L._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  The Beach Boys – Sail On Sailor 1972 (Super Deluxe Edition) – (Capitol Records / Brother Records)
  • 71tfZoyqMWL._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  Paul McCartney – The 7″ Singles – (MPL Communications)
  • 91jAjIsXtPL._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  Cody Johnson – Cody Johnson & the Rockin’ CJB Live – (CoJo Music / Warner Music)
  • 91sOJCPZ96L._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  NOFX – Double Album – (Fat Wreck Chords)
  • 81fp9elQ8tL._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  Elvis Presley – Elvis on Tour – (RCA Records / Sony Music)
Continue reading “Friday New Releases – December 2, 2022”

Scorpions – ‘Best of Rockers ‘N’ Ballads’ (1989) – Album Review (The Scorpions Collection Series)

The Scorpions were flying high. From the release of ‘Lovedrive’ in 1979 all the way up to ‘Savage Amusement’ in 1988, they could do no wrong. Their label, Mercury Records, thought, “hey, good time for a greatest hits compilation”…and ‘Best of Rockers ‘N’ Ballads’ was born. Since they have had other compilations focusing on Pre-‘Lovedrive’, Mercury Records released a compilation of only songs that were during the bands tenure on Mercury from 1979-1988. To make it enticing to fans, they added a few new remixes and unreleased tracks and I am a fan of new mixes and unreleased tracks.

The album was released on November 29, 1989 just in time for Christmas. And what a present it was. The album sold over 1,000,000 copies and is the only Scorpions compilation to be certified Platinum. The album went to #43 on the U.S. charts and had one single that went to #5 on the Mainstream Rock Charts. Now, depending on where you were in the world, you got a different track list. The European version had an extra track, “Is There Anybody There” from ‘Lovedrive, but this was a remix and previously unreleased. They also got a remix of “Hey You” which is a Non-Album single from 1980 that hasn’t been released on any album up to this point. The US and Japanese releases did not have either of those tracks, but did have the original version of “Hey You”. The European CD release also included one more rare track. It was the version of “China White” which features the guitar solo that was only available on the US Blackout release. If you are a completist on the Scorpions, you have a lot to buy here.

Continue reading “Scorpions – ‘Best of Rockers ‘N’ Ballads’ (1989) – Album Review (The Scorpions Collection Series)”

November 2022 Purchases – Vinyl & CD’s

Welcome to the November 2022 Purchases update. You will notice that my cover picture is a little different this month. Normally, I have all my purchases stacked on top of the turntable, but there was a problem this time around. My cat, Chandler, decided it was nap time and wouldn’t move. Actually, Chandler naps up there a lot when I am working from home so no big surprise. So, I didn’t want to disturb him as he needs his beauty sleep so I took a picture of him instead. Believe it or not, he is still a kitten as he is only 9 months old. Once full grown he will be 20-25 lbs and won’t be able to fit on the turntable so I am letting him enjoy it while he can.

Okay, enough of that. Let us get to the real reason we are here…the music. And what did I get this month. I will say it was a better month than last one as I went a little nuts on the vinyl this time around and very little on the CDs. First up, I have been holding off on buying Def Leppard stuff on vinyl because I want to see what is in the Collection, Volume 4, but I’m tired of waiting and I realize it is generally not any one specific live album that has already been released, so I bought these three things so I finally had them on vinyl.

Now, I did hit one real record store this month, but didn’t score a bunch. The only thing I picked up from Mad Jack’s are a couple of Asia albums that I didn’t have in my collection for some strange reason. And they were clean!

Continue reading “November 2022 Purchases – Vinyl & CD’s”

Matt Nathanson – ‘Left & Right: Live at Fingerprints / Live at Park Ave.’ E.P. – Album Review

Matt Nathanson is one of my favorite artist and songwriters, if you haven’t noticed by all the stuff I post on here about him. I am not officially doing a series on him, but merely posting all the cool Singles and E.P,’s I have of his. One of those is called ‘Left & Right: Live at Fingerprints. Live at Park Ave’ and it is an E.P. that was released back on August 5, 2008. It was recorded at two separate solo acoustic in store appearances along his 2007-2008 tour for his ‘Some Mad Hope’ album. The shows were the ones at Fingerprints in Long Beach, California (Tracks 1-3 & 7-8) and the other was at Park Ave CDs which I believe is in Orlando, Florida (Tracks 4-6).

What is great about this release is how intimate the shows are. How casual the whole thing is. It is basically Matt and a guitar and the crowd. His banter is pretty hilarious at times like when he curses and then he sees a little kid the crowd and apologizes to the little person, but still goes on with his totally inappropriate banter. He opens with an acoustic performance of the song “Car Crash” which is already an amazing song, but here, it feels so personal and emotional as Matt really digs deep and gives it his all. Quite stunning.

Continue reading “Matt Nathanson – ‘Left & Right: Live at Fingerprints / Live at Park Ave.’ E.P. – Album Review”

Talisman – ‘Five Men Live’ (2005) – Album Review (The Jeff Scott Soto Series)

During the early 2000’s, Marcel Jacob came forward and revealed he was suffering from chronic rheumatism and it would limit his live shows. By 2003, he must have felt up to it because the band played several festivals during that Summer and thankfully for us, a lot of those were recorded. Two shows in particular were captured and were finally released by Frontiers Records in 2005. We got a Live CD and then a DVD set. Today, we are talking about the CD set. We’ll do the DVD next time because it has more than just the shows.

The two shows captured were at Club Mondo in Stockholm, Sweden in August 2003 and the second show was from the Sweden Rock Festival from June 2003. This would be the 2nd Sweden Rock Festival live show we’ve been given from the band. The line-up was interesting as the band was usually a 4-piece band. This time we have the return of the great axeman, Fredrik Akesson as Pontus Norgren had left. The other interesting was they added a fifth member with Howie Simon on guitar. Howie at the time was Soto’s solo band’s guitarist and friend. They really brought the music and delivered two great shows so let us get to them.

Continue reading “Talisman – ‘Five Men Live’ (2005) – Album Review (The Jeff Scott Soto Series)”

My Sunday Song – “Sound of Madness” by Shinedown

For My Sunday Song #327, we are talking about the song “Sound of Madness” by Shinedown. The song is from the album ‘The Sound of Madness’ from 2008. The single was released on February 23, 2009 and went to #1 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks and #85 on the Billboard Top 100. It helped propel the album to double platinum status with over 2,000,000 copies sold.

The song was written by Brent Smith and Dave Bassett and is basically a rant by Brent against people who sit and complain about their problems all the time. They feel they are always the victim and that they need to get off their ass and fight to fix their problems and not be consumed by them. He feels their misery is a self-serving prophecy as if you are always negative only negative things will happen to you. Brent states he knows as he wrote the book on it, but the difference is he stood up for himself.

The song is heavy with pounding, thunderous drums from Barry Kerch. And Zach Myer’s guitar is almost seamless with Eric Bass’ bass to give a great thumping rhythm. Nick Perri’s lead guitar is brutal and all together everything is loud and pulls you in. Brent’s vocals show an anger yet it is so melodic. The chorus is catchy and is hook-filled greatness. A killer track and easily to see why they named the album after it.

Give the song a listen and let me know what you think. Are you always negative or are you a fighter? Or do you know someone like who the song describes? Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed the song. Have a wonderful and a Happy Sunday!! Stay positive!!

“Sound Of Madness”

Yeah, I get it
You’re an outcast
Always under attack
Always coming in last
Bringing up the past
No one owes you anything

I think
You need a shotgun blast
A kick in the ass
So paranoid
Watch your back

Oh my, here we go

Another loose cannon gone bi-polar
Slipped down, couldn’t get much lower
Quicksand’s got no sense of humor
I’m still laughing like hell

You think that by crying to me
Looking so sorry that I’m gonna believe
You’ve been infected by a social disease
Well, then take your medicine

I created the sound of madness
Wrote the book on pain
Somehow I’m still here to explain
That the darkest hour never comes in the night
You can sleep with a gun
When you gonna wake up and fight
For yourself?

I’m so sick of this tombstone mentality
If there’s an afterlife
Then it’ll set you free
But I’m not gonna part the seas
You’re a self-fulfilling prophecy

You think that by crying to me
Looking so sorry that I’m gonna believe
You’ve been infected by a social disease
Well, then take your medicine

I created the sound of madness
Wrote the book on pain
Somehow I’m still here to explain
That the darkest hour never comes in the night
You can sleep with a gun
When you gonna wake up and fight
For yourself

I created the sound of madness
Wrote the book on pain
Somehow I’m still here
To explain
That the darkest hour never comes in the night
You can sleep with a gun
When you gonna wake up
When you gonna wake up and fight

I created the sound of madness
Wrote the book on pain
Somehow I’m still here
To explain
That the darkest hour never comes in the night
You can sleep with a gun
When you gonna wake up and fight
For yourself

When you gonna wake up and fight for yourself?
When you gonna wake up and fight for yourself?
When you gonna wake up and fight for yourself?

Written by Brent Smith and Dave Bassett

Matt Nathanson – “I Saw” – CD Promotional Single

In my further quest for owning all Matt Nathanson items listed on Discogs, I found another gem. This Promo CD is for the song “I Saw” off his 2003 album and major label debut called ‘Beneath These Fireworks’. The song was from 2004 and sadly it didn’t chart. No real surprise as he’s never been a big radio hits guy (even though his stuff is better than radio). The album didn’t do well either and shortly after releasing his first major label debut on Universal, Universal dropped him. Such is the story of so many artists and bands.

Yes, it has a cracked case!!

The song was written by Matt Nathanson and Mark Weinberg and it seems to be about a break up. The two people were together and one still aches and longs for the other. It sounds like he screwed up, she broke up. He wants her back and is sorry for what he did. He wants her to save him so badly by taking him back. She’s consoling him and telling him everything will be alright, but she isn’t going to take him back. It is over. He dreams about her and can’t get her out of his head, but it doesn’t happen. They are done.

Continue reading “Matt Nathanson – “I Saw” – CD Promotional Single”