Tuesday’s Memes – Ghost (Part 2)

Okay, I know I did a post of Memes on them last week, but there were so many good ones or just so many depending on your point of view.  I have enjoyed going through these myself, so I hope you like them too…let’s get to it.

Part One – Click HERE

Part Two begins now…RATS!!!

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I Prevail – ‘Trauma’ – Album Review

I Prevail is back after a potential career ending vocal cord injury for singer, Brian Burkheiser.  Brian wasn’t sure if he would be able to continue, but with a successful surgery, that ‘trauma’ has led to the band returning with their sophomore album, ‘Trauma’.  And let me tell you the band is not suffering from any sophomore slump or suffering any side effects from that surgery.  This is a band that has found who they are and delivered one of the most impressive albums of the year.

I Prevail is a metalcore band and as I am not overly familiar with that genre, all I can say is if it sounds like this, I will be getting to know more of this band and this genre.  All I do know is I hear sounds of Linkin Park and Hollywood Undead in their music and since I like both those bands, then this is something for me.  It is at times brutal and other times beautiful.

The unclean vocals, Eric Vanlerberghe, don’t distract from the songs as it is not excessive.  It only enhances the performances and gives it an edge and attitude that fits perfectly with the music.  The clean vocals, Brian Burkheiser, are smooth and so melodic and he has this great rock voice that is quickly becoming a favorite of mine.

The opening track, “Bow Down”, is an assault on the senses.  It comes at you with such power and force that you are immediately engulfed in the shockwave and blown back in your seat.  Then we go into the song “Paranoid” which is so different than the opener. It includes a little rap and Brian’s clean vocals sound great.  It slowly builds up and then drops back slower.

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My Sunday Song – “Unchained” by Van Halen

For My Sunday Song #141, we are now going to tackle 10 songs from Van Halen.  They could be with David Lee Roth, Sammy Hager or even Gary Cherone on lead vocals.  We will cover all the bases.  First up will be “Unchained” off the band’s fourth album, ‘Fair Warning’.  ‘Fair Warning’ came out in April 1981 and “Unchained” was the second single off the album released in July 1981, but I had also heard no singles were ever officially released so not sure what to believe.  Either way, the song reached #13 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Chart.

The album suffered from poor sales, but the album was received very well by the critics.  In fact, “Unchained” is often named as one of the best Van Halen songs of all time.  I can’t say I disagree with that.

The song is noted for its use of the MXR M-117 Flanger which for us non-guitar people is a pedal used that can change the sound of the guitar.  For the guitar people, It uses a Drop Db tuning with suspended fourth chords interspersed (thanks Wikipedia).  Eddie made this effect very popular and helped increase the sales of such equipment. (Picture not actual EVH pedal).

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The song also features producer Ted Templeman on vocals.  During a point in the song, Dave is pontificating on and on and Ted jumps in and says “Come On Dave, Give Me a Break” and Dave replies, “Hey, hey, hey, hey, one break coming up!”.  It is an awesome moment in the song.

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Friday New Releases – April 26th

I should be arriving home today from vacation in Paris, France so I will be a little late getting to these releases, but there are a bunch I want to at least listen to first before I buy.  All my choices are highlighted in Blue.  Let me know what you are interested in or if there is something I might have missed as that happens…a lot!!  Enjoy and have a great weekend.  I know I will be resting from this trip and I am sure suffering major jet lag.

  • 81v8c1Xq1AL._AC_UL115_  Rob Thomas – Chip Tooth Smile – (Atlantic Records):  The former Matchbox 20 frontman is finally back with a new solo album after four years.  I liked his early stuff and definitely early Matchbox 20.  I am hoping he captures a little of that lost magic, but I don’t know yet as I haven’t listened to anything yet, not even the video posted below.  I will try it out, he has earned that.

  • 41o9cEfsGBL._AC_US320_QL65_  Rodrigo y Gabriela – Mettavolution – (Rubyworks):  This might actually be first up on the playlist.  I love these two.  Their instrumental, flamenco style music is at times breathtaking.  High expectations as I have never been disappointed before.  Give them a listen if you have heard them before…it is really cool.

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Mr. Mister – “Kyrie” (The 45 Single)

Back in 1985, Mr. Mister were blowing up the Billboard Hot 100.  All of it a result of one song…”Kyrie”.  “Kyrie” is off the album ‘Welcome to the Real World’ and the song went all the way to #1 in the U.S.  Not just the U.S., it was #1 in Canada and Norway as well.  Mr. Mister were a four-piece band out of Phoenix, Arizona with lead singer Richard Page.

The song, “Kyrie”, was written by Richard Page, Steve George & John Lang.  John wrote the lyrics while Steve and Richard wrote the music.  “Kyrie” means Lord, Have Mercy in Greek and the song actually feels like a prayer. It was inspired by John Lang’s time in church as young child.  It was believed that the song was written due to a traumatic incident with Richard Page, but thankfully that is not the case and it is only an urban legend.

Richard’s vocals on this uptempo song are so smooth and so powerful.  When I said it felt like a prayer that is what it feels like.  Richard is screaming out to God to have mercy on him during his travels.  It was so impactful, it helped drive this song to the top.  However, people didn’t realize at the time that it was religious (even though Mr. Mister are not a Christian band).  People thought he was singing about a girl named Kyrie.

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Billy Idol – ‘Charmed Life’ – Album Review (The Billy Idol Series)

Billy Idol’s world was different now after ‘Whiplash Smile’ and ‘Vital Idol’.  Steve Stevens was gone, his manager Bill Aucoin was gone and he needed a fresh start.  After reconciling with his girlfriend, Perri Lister, they moved from New York City to Los Angeles to give things a go.

Billy and Perri had a baby boy, Billy bought himself a motorcycle, Billy got the acting bug and Billy couldn’t stay faithful to Perri.  A lot was going on.  Oh yeah, and he continued to use drugs.  So, where to begin.  I will give a Cliff Notes version as it would be a rather long synopsis if I didn’t.

I guess we will go with the fact that he had a baby and was now a dad, but it didn’t seem to stop his infidelity. He continually cheated on Perri and even fell for a girl 13 years younger than him.  Well, he knocked her up and she gave Billy a beautiful baby girl.  This of course was the end of Billy & Perri when she found out.

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Billy also met a lot of people in the movie business and actually got a big role in the Oliver Stone movie ‘The Doors’ about Jim Morrison and the band.   But before he could do that role, Billy went and had himself a little motorcycle accident which nearly cost him one of his legs.  As a result, he couldn’t do the role and had to settle for a much lesser role in the movie.  In fact, it was so bad he wasn’t able to promote his new album he had been working on called ‘Charmed Life’.  He did appear in the video for the first single (more on that later), but not much else.

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Kiss – Kissworld: The Best of Kiss – Album Review

I know what you are thinking.  Why do we need another Kiss Greatest Hits compilation?  Honestly, we really don’t.  We have tons already and there is nothing new on here that the real fan doesn’t already have.  So Why?  Well, easy.  Kiss is touring their End of the Road tour and they wanted product out there that the casual fan or new fan that they get from all the press can run out and grab.  Simple!

But is this something worth getting?  As a casual fan…No.  Probably not as there are better compilations out there.  As the Hard Core Fan….Well, I did buy it if that tells you anything.  I had to because I didn’t have it in my ever growing collection.  Plus, it is so pretty.  Yes, pretty.  I bought the Special Edition double LP with Yellow/Red Splatter vinyl.

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The packaging is a gatefold with the Group photo on the front and the track listing on the back such as below…

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My Sunday Song – “Rocket Ride” by Kiss

For My Sunday Song #140 and the final of this 10 song run of Kiss songs, we are discussing “Rocket Ride” by Kiss.  The song is one of the five original songs on the classic live album Kiss Alive II.  For the second live album, Kiss stepped it up a notch and added some original songs to give the album that extra boost.  The song reached #39 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was the band’s seventh song to make it to the Top 40 charts.

The song was written by Ace Frehley and Sean Delaney.  Sean, if you don’t know, worked with Kiss back in the day and was crucial in Kiss becoming Kiss.  He pushed Bill Aucoin to go see the band and then Bill became the manager.  Sean became their road manager and was critical in the development of the band’s onstage choreography and even co-wrote many famous Kiss songs.  He is a big part of the  band’s Kisstory!!

This is the only song of the five that Ace actually appeared on as Bob Kulick was brought in to play the guitar on all the other songs.  Ace and Peter are the only Kiss members to appear on this track in return.  Peter of course on the drums and Ace played all the guitar and bass parts.

The song opens with some electrifying guitar riffs delivered by the master himself.  It speeds by with a blistering pace and Ace truly nails the vocals.  The song is fun, rocking and delivers everything you want in a Kiss song including a stellar solo.  Peter keeps the beats coming with some nice little fills and the two are great together. The guitar riff at the end along with the explosiveness of Peter’s drumming ends the song perfectly and goes out the same way it came in  with bang.

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Friday New Releases – April 19th

Today is Good Friday!!  In more ways than I can explain right now.  Easter is this weekend and, the kids are out of school for a week…oh what should we do!!  First, we should check out the new music.  There isn’t a whole lot as it is Easter weekend. Only one that I will definitely listen to and the rest…maybe or maybe not.  My choices are highlighted in Blue.

  • 81fids1zw7l._ss500_  JohnnySwim – Moonlight – (Johnnyswim):  Johnnyswim are a husband/wife duo who I am not that familiar with.  I saw them open for Needtobreathe and I really enjoyed the show, so I will be checking them out.  Plus Chip Gaines of Fixer Upper loves them and his wife had them play for his birthday…I don’t think I could afford to have any band play for my birthday!!

  • 710paSDGp9L._SX522_  Rolling Stones – Honk – (Universal Music):  Yes, another greatest hits package from the aging rockers.  This was to be for their upcoming tour which is now postponed due to Mick having heart surgery.  Prayers out to you sir!!  I will spin it, but when I feel in the mood for it.  Won’t be rushing out to get.

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