Kiss – ‘Gods of Thunder: The Legendary Concert Broadcast – Sao Paulo, August 27, 1994’ – Album Review (The Bootleg Series)

In my quest for bootlegs, another one popped up at a record show here in Charlotte. This one was fairly new as it was released in 2020 and it was still sealed. It is simply called ‘Gods of Thunder”. The show is only a partial show from the Monsters of Rock show in Sao Paulo, Brazil on August 27, 1994. That setlist had 22 tracks and this is a streamlined vinyl with only 10 tracks and not even sure these are the best 10 tracks. But the good news is, they did omit “Rock & Roll All Nite” which we didn’t really need to have another live version of that as I have a million of it already.

I’m not sure what they were going for with the cover but I am sure with the lightning and cloudy skies is the God of Thunder part, but what is with the chess board at the bottom and the poorly cropped faces on the cover. That looks about as shitty of job that I could do. The bright side is, they at least got the right people as that would’ve been the line-up in 1994. The back cover is the same scene minus the heads and the track list instead. The cool thing about it is the beautiful blue vinyl. I like that a lot. And as far as sound, it is from a radio broadcast, so the sound is fantastic. There is no denying it is a live show as nothing has been done to fix the imperfections, which is what we like about the bootlegs.


Continue reading “Kiss – ‘Gods of Thunder: The Legendary Concert Broadcast – Sao Paulo, August 27, 1994’ – Album Review (The Bootleg Series)”

SOTO – ‘Origami’ (2019) – Album Review (The Jeff Scott Soto Series)

For those following along on the series, you know by now that SOTO is Jeff Scott Soto’s band that he uses to differentiate his solo stuff from his more heavier sounding metal songs. And this is heavy. This is the band’s third album now in the last 4/5 years and the only difference in the band is at bass. Sadly, bassist David Z (of Z02 & Adrenaline Mob) passed away in a tragic accident. In his stead is none other than Tony Dickinson and he also helped produce the album. We still have Jeff on vocals, obviously, along with BJ on keys and guitars, Edu Cominato on drums along with Jorge Salan on guitars.

The album was released on May 19, 2019 and it doesn’t stray far from the first two albums. It is a heavy rock album, a little at times and a modern, electronic sound also. But…I can’t say they’ve been my favorite projects from Jeff. Yes, I do like the heavier sound and Jeff does a fine job of singing, but the songs haven’t been as melodic as I like, the hooks aren’t as catchy and the choruses are a little lackluster at times. That doesn’t mean the first two albums were bad album, I just haven’t enjoyed them as much. And is this one any different? Well, it might be my favorite of the bunch, but is it a favorite of the Soto collection? We first need to dig deeper and explore these tracks to see how they stack up.

The album kicks off with “Hypermania” and a full on electronica bit before kicking in hard & heavy. Musically the song is really awesome, but I can’t get past the horrible lyrics in the chorus. The rhyming of hypermania with the words insania and no brainia. Totally childish and lame. Take out the lyrics and this is a killer modern metal track. For me, I just skip the whole thing and start the album with the title track.

The title track, “Origami”, explodes with some ear-splitting drum pounding, a vicious riff and then it turns in to a speed metal attack. Jeff’s vocals are aggressive and he attacks the song with a killer’s rage and it is awesome. One of the heaviest tracks on the album and it really grabs hold and slams it home. The guitars are freaking nasty, the solo is cool and Jeff even gives off a scream which he does so well. A real ballbuster of a track and should be the opening track!!

“Belie” is up next and it slows things down a little. No, not a ballad, just a slower tempo. There is a darkness tone to it, it is still heavy. The verses give off a sadness and don’t really connect with the music. The payoff comes with the chorus with layers of harmonies and Jeff does sound great. The cool thing about it is you get a bass break, a drum break and a guitar break in it which is nice to see all areas shine. And the guitar solo is a screamer. One of the best on the album.

More great guitar work opens “World Gone Colder” and the guitar never lets up. It is full of piss and vigor throughout the song. A roller coaster of riffs. The chorus is enjoyable and Jeff really goes all out, but you can’t say enough about the guitars on this one as they are the star. The solo will seal the deal for you.

“Detonate” is the only song to feature the late, great David Z on bass. For that, it is a little special. It starts with a slow build, a whispering Jeff Scott Soto on vocals and then the band comes roaring in and the song gets going. If you listen close, you can hear David just smacking the bass. The song is hard & heavy, and with a title like detonate, you’d expect this song to explode and it doesn’t quite get as explosive as I’d expect and starts to lose me by the end.

Things slow down with “Torn”, a quasi-power ballad. The foot comes off the gas with this one and Jeff gives a very pleasant vocal delivery. Musically, everything is toned down, softer yet full of emotion. The chorus is catchy and Jeff really takes it up a notch. The drum sound on this one is solid, the guitars give a melancholic tone and when Jeff screams “GO”, the guitars lay down a solo that fits perfectly with the song. The guys show they aren’t one-dimensional.

The heavy comes back with “Dance with the Devil” and if you are going to have devil in the title, it better kick ass. There is a whole Sons of Apollo vibe here with even hints of Dio. The riffs are speedy, gritty and brutal, the drum work is powerful and destructive especially the double kick drum whose speed is insane. A rocking track, but also a little forgettable when its over as it doesn’t stick with you.

“Afterglow” is up next and the sound is more like a Soto solo album as it is more melodic, a little funky at times and has a big band swing groove. The chorus is full on harmonies and the song is although has a serious tone, is a lot of fun for me as the groove is really cool. One of my favorite tracks on the album.

“Vanity Lane” takes it back to the heavy and it has a darker tone and more serious feel to it. The chorus is better than the verses and the guitar solo is great, however, I like the song well enough, but it doesn’t stick with you. Not memorable enough.

The final song on the album is a Michael Jackson cover of his song “Give In To Me” which is one of Michael’s more rocking songs and SOTO does it justice. It starts off slow and Jeff goes in to a deeper register and when the chorus explodes, he goes back to that Jeff sound he is so famous for. I love this song already, so I do enjoy it here as it is hard to screw up a Michael Jackson song.

But there is a bonus track so it ain’t over yet. “KMAG” closes things out and what is a KMAG? It is Kiss My Ass Goodbye! It is heavy as hell and the drums are earth shatteringly hard. I like this one a lot and the big payoff is that chorus as anytime you can scream out Kiss My Ass Goodbye it just feels great. A great way to go out on the album.

Track Listing:

  1. Hypermania – Delete
  2. Origami – Keeper
  3. Belie – Keeper
  4. World Gone Colder – Keeper
  5. Detonate – Delete
  6. Torn – Keeper
  7. Dance with the Devil – Keeper (1/2 Point)
  8. Afterglow – Keeper
  9. Vanity Lane – Delete
  10. Give In To Me – Keeper
  11. KMAG (Bonus Track) – Keeper

The Track Score is 7.5 out of 11 Tracks or 68%.  SOTO didn’t impress me much with the first two albums, and the third didn’t do much better.  The songwriting is still subpar as the lyrics at times are cringe worthy and the songs aren’t as memorable as most of Jeff’s work, however, this one held my interest a little more and had more songs that I liked.  If I had to pick a favorite of the three so far, this would be it, but not by much.  My Overall Score is a 3.5 out of 5.0 Stars which is the same as the 2nd album, but since I like this one a little more maybe it should be 3.6, who knows.  I’ll stick with Jeff’s other albums more than I will with SOTO…sorry Jeff.



  1. Panther – ‘Panther’ (1986) – recorded in 1984
  2. Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force – ‘Rising Force’ (1984)
  3. Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force – ‘Marching Out’ (1985)
  4. Kuni – ‘Lookin’ For Action’ (1988)
  5. Kryst the Conqueror – ‘Deliver Us From Evil’ (1989) / ‘Soldiers of Light: The Complete Recordings (2019)
  6. Eyes – ‘Eyes’ (1990)
  7. Eyes – “Nobody Said It Was Easy” (1990) – 7″ Single – Bonus Edition
  8. Talisman – ‘Talisman’ (1990)
  9. Talisman – “I’ll Be Waiting” (1990) – 7″ Single – Bonus Edition
  10. Skrapp Mettle – ‘Sensitive’ (1991)
  11. Axel Rudi Pell – ‘Eternal Prisoner’ (1992)
  12. Bakteria – ‘Deficate! Suffocate! Mutilate! Masturbate!’ (1992 / 2009)
  13. Eyes – ‘Windows of the Soul’ (1993)
  14. Talisman – ‘Genesis’ (1993)
  15. Axel Rudi Pell – ‘The Ballads’ (1993)
  16. Biker Mice From Mars – ‘Biker Mice From Mars (Soundtrack)’ (1993)
  17. Takara – ‘Eternal Faith’ (1993)
  18. Talisman – ‘5 Out Of 5 (Live in Japan)’ (1994)
  19. Talisman – ‘Humanimal’ (1994)
  20. Axel Rudi Pell – ‘Between the Walls’ (1994)
  21. Gary Schutt – ‘Sentimetal’ (1994)
  22. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Love Parade’ (1994)
  23. Axel Rudi Pell – ‘Made in Germany (Live)’ (1995)
  24. Takara – ‘Taste of Heaven’ (1995)
  25. Talisman – ‘Life’ (1995)
  26. Axel Rudi Pell – ‘Black Moon Pyramid’ (1996)
  27. Human Clay – ‘Human Clay’ (1996)
  28. Talisman – ‘Best of’ (1996)
  29. Axel Rudi Pell – ‘Magic’ (1997)
  30. Human Clay – ‘U4IA’ (1997)
  31. Boogie Knights – ‘Welcome to the Jungle Boogie’ (1997)
  32. Takara – ‘Blind in Paradise’ (1998)
  33. Talisman – ‘Truth’ (1998)
  34. ‘Rock Star: Music from the Motion Picture (Soundtrack)’ – Various Artists (2001)
  35. Humanimal – ‘Humanimal’ (2002)
  36. Humanimal – Find My Way Home: Limited Edition E.P. (2002)
  37. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Holding On E.P.’ (2002)
  38. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Prism’ (2002)
  39. Talisman – ‘Live at Sweden Rock Festival’ (2002)
  40. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘JSS Live at the Gods 2002’ (2003)
  41. Talisman – ‘Cats & Dogs’ (2003)
  42. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Believe in Me E.P.’ (2004
  43. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Lost in the Translation’ (2004)
  44. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Live at the Queen Convention 2003’ (2004)
  45. Soul SirkUS – ‘World Play’ (2004/2005)
  46. Talisman – ‘Five Men Live’ (2005)
  47. Talisman – ‘World’s Best Kept Secret DVD (2005)
  48. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Essential Ballads’ (2006)
  49. Journey – ‘Live from Atlanta (Bootleg)’ (2006)
  50. Talisman – ‘7’ (2006)
  51. Talisman – The Albums Ranked Worst to First
  52. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘B-Sides’ (2006)
  53. Redlist – ‘Ignorance’ (2007)
  54. Jeff Scott Soto – LA Rocks Demo / Vinnie Vincent Demo 1988 (2008)
  55. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Beautiful Mess’ (2009)
  56. Jeff Scott Soto – “21st Century” / “Gin & Tonic Sky” CD Single (2009) – Bonus Edition
  57. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘One Night in Madrid’ (2009)
  58. Trans-Siberian Orchestra – ‘Night Castle’ (2009)
  59. W.E.T. – ‘W.E.T.’ (2009)
  60. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Live at Firefest 2008’ (2010)
  61. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Damage Control’ (2012)
  62. W.E.T. – ‘Rise Up’ (2013)
  63. W.E.T. – ‘One Live in Stockholm’ (2014)
  64. Jeff Scott Soto – The Authorized Biography (2014)
  65. SOTO – ‘Inside the Vertigo’ (2015)
  66. Joel Hoekstra’s 13 – Dying to Live (2015)
  67. SOTO – ‘Divak’ (2016)
  68. Sons of Apollo – ‘Psychotic Symphony’ (2017)
  69. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Retribution’ (2017)
  70. W.E.T. – ‘Earthrage’ (2018)
  71. SOTO – ‘Origami’ (2019)
  72. Sons of Apollo – ‘Live With the Plovdiv Psychotic Symphony’ (2019)
  73. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Wide Awake (In My Dreamland)’ (2020)
  74. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Live and Loud in Milan 2019’ (2020)
  75. Sons of Apollo – ‘MMXX’ (2020)
  76. SOTO – ‘Revision’ (2020)
  77. Talisman – “Never Say Die (A Song For Marcel)” – 7″ Single (2020)
  78. W.E.T. – ‘Retransmission’ (2021)
  79. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘The Duets Collection, Vol. 1’ (2021)
  80. Jeff Scott Soto – ‘Complicated’ (2022)
  81. Ellefson/Soto – ‘Vacation in the Underground’ (2022)
  82. Jeff Scott Soto / Jason Bieler – Live In Concert (2022) – Bonus Edition

My Sunday Song – “Monkey On Your Back” by Aldo Nova

For My Sunday Song #359, we are talking about the song “Monkey On Your Back” off Aldo Nova’s 2nd album, 1983’s ‘Subject…Aldo Nova’. The song was the first single off the album and although it didn’t make the Top 100, it did rise to #12 on the Mainstream Rock Chart which helped send the album to Gold status in the U.S. and Platinum in his home country of Canada. Not a bad start, however, the promotion was lacking and the album didn’t hit the level it probably should have as this is my favorite Aldo Nova album.

Before there was Bon Jovi’s Tommy & Gina, we get the sad stories of Timmy and Sally. “Monkey On Your Back” is about the monkey on your back and in their case that monkey is drugs. Tommy got addicted to Heroin and it took all his money and ruined his life. Sally had it worst, she met a guy name Willy and Willy was a pimp. He was kind enough to turn her into a prostitute and got her addicted to heroin. What a swell guy. Both tragic stories with no happy ending. The song is Aldo’s commentary on the drug problem in this world and how easily it is to get addicted and take over you life. It is a dark, disturbing world and something needs to be done.

The song opens with some pounding drums, a killer guitar riff by Aldo accompanied by some solo work by Aldo as well. The keyboards are massive adding to the whole sci-fi vibe of the album giving it more texture and color. Aldo’s vocals are aggressive and at times he even uses the talk box for more dramatic effect and this was before Bon Jovi did it. But the hero of this story is the guitars as Aldo is so underrated in this area. His mixture of the keyboards and the guitar are always great together. The song was probably ahead of its time but does sound a little dated, but when that solo kicks in with the robotic like growl, you don’t care one bit. You just want to rock out.

Continue reading “My Sunday Song – “Monkey On Your Back” by Aldo Nova”

Friday New releases – May 5, 2023

Happy Friday and Happy Day After Star Wars Day. The Force is strong this week with new releases…yeah, that was pretty bad. But we do have a lot of new releases for you today and hopefully there is something for everyone. The only one I’m waiting on this week is Winger’s new one. Can’t wait for that to arrive today as I’m ready to crank that one. I am sure I’ll have to listen to Ed Sheeran’s new one as my kids tend to play him. Let me know what you want to hear this week and what we may have missed. Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend.

  • 817GBJeKfAL._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  Winger – Seven – (Frontiers Records)
  • download  Ed Sheeran – “-” – (Asylum Records / Atlantic Records / Warner Music)
Continue reading “Friday New releases – May 5, 2023”

Whitesnake – The Best & Worst Song From Every Album

I have done two posts already on the Best & Worst songs from every Judas Priest album and also from Cheap Trick. I really enjoyed doing that so I thought I would continue that process and this time we would go through every Whitesnake album and see what is the best song and the worst one off each album as well. Whitesnake has 13 studio albums to go through so sit back and take it all in. Now, let’s preface this with the fact that these are my choices and not necessarily yours as we can have different opinions. If you watched the show you will see that sometimes my worst song was their favorite so you never know what people like and we all like different things or this would be a very dull world. I hope you enjoy!!

TROUBLE’ (1978)

BEST SONG“Belgian Tom’s Hat Trick”: The coolest song on the album and probably the best is “Belgian Tom’s Hat Trick” which is a full assault of an instrumental with 3 different solos.  One for Moody, One for Lord and One for Marsden.  I don’t see it as out of place as Purple threw in an instrumental on ‘Burn’ and this one is way better.  I really love when Jon Lord lays it down and he does just that.  The guitar’s have a riff that plays through-out that is the main feel for the song and everything is played beautifully off of that riff. No David Coverdale on this one, so sorry, but this is too killer not to include.

WORST SONG – “Day Tripper”: The worst is this horrible cover of the Beatles’ “Day Tripper”.  It is…let’s say…not good.  It is uninspiring and bluh.  The adding in of the Framptonesque Talk Box doesn’t help and I really can’t stand it.  I hope that point is coming across. Skip/Delete whatever you do, just avoid it.


Continue reading “Whitesnake – The Best & Worst Song From Every Album”

Kiss – ‘Destroyer: 45th Anniversary 2-LP Deluxe Edition (Colored Vinyl) (2021) – Album Review (The Kiss Review Series)

With the album ‘Alive’ in 1975, Kiss finally broke through and were on their ways to be Rock Gods!! But their next album needed to make a statement. It needed to capture the band like none of their other albums had been able to do. Famed record producer, Bob Ezrin, was brought in to man the boards all based on the work he was doing with Alice Cooper. Kiss needed that same energy and success. And did Bob deliver? Oh hell yeah he did!! ‘Destroyer’ was released on March 15, 1976 and with songs like “Beth”, ‘Detroit Rock City” and “Shout it Out Loud”, Kiss was on top. They had made it! A now platinum selling artist, a massive touring act and they were starting to reach heights they only dreamed about. At first thought, the album was slow out of the gate until “Beth” was played on the radio…it was the B-Side to “Detroit Rock City” and then Bam!! Everything changed. To celebrate this pivotal album, Kiss delivered the 45th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition Box Set which we’ve already reviewed and it is jammed pack with goodness. This time we have the 2-LP Deluxe Edition Colored Vinyl which we are discussing. It isn’t as jammed pack but it is still pretty great for what it is.

One thing I really like about this set is the gatefold. It is stunning. When you open up the gatefold and there are the members of Kiss in full gear on their choppers, you get excited. It is really cool.

Continue reading “Kiss – ‘Destroyer: 45th Anniversary 2-LP Deluxe Edition (Colored Vinyl) (2021) – Album Review (The Kiss Review Series)”

W.E.T. – ‘Earthrage’ (2018) – Album Review (The Jeff Scott Soto Series)

Almost a decade earlier, Serafino Perugino of Frontiers Records, thought a supergroup with Jeff Scott Soto doing Journey type AOR music would be a smart idea. He is notorious for putting all these great musicians together for so-called supergroups and some would say he does it WAY TOO MUCH! And I would agree, except for W.E.T. W.E.T. is a culmination of some great artist including Robert Sall of the band Work of Art (The “W”); Erik Martensson of the band Eclipses (The “E”) and Jeff Scott Soto of the band Talisman (The “T”). All three bands are Swedish bands and all on Frontiers so it made it easy to bring these three guys together. Rounding out the band are Magnus Henriksson and Robban Back both from the band Eclipse as well. What most thought would be a one-off project has now turned in to 3 studio albums and one live album and we couldn’t be happier.

But, will the third time be the charm? Will this be as good or better than the first two or have they outlived their usefulness? The answer to those questions is that this band keeps getting better and better with age. They are like a fine wine and although there is a little cheese in this sound, the album gives us a group of songs that has so many hooks that the US Fish and Wildlife Service has issued a warning about that fact. So, sit back and get ready to get caught up in the music hook, line and sinker. And I am sure all that sounded as bad as it felt writing it. Since I’m only writing bad jokes at this point, lets get to the music.

The album opens with the stellar first single “Watch the Fire” and mine it is something to behold. It opens with an atmospheric keyboard sound, then the guitars and drums come roaring in and then we get Erik’s vocals to kick off the song and Jeff joins in as well. Another fantastic duet between the two and it is shame this is the only song they do it on, but what a song. The melodies, the harmonies, the hook-ridden chorus, the wicked guitar solo, it is melodic rock at its absolute best!! This is one of the best songs they have done on the three albums.

Continue reading “W.E.T. – ‘Earthrage’ (2018) – Album Review (The Jeff Scott Soto Series)”

My Sunday Song – “Blood on the Bricks” by Aldo Nova

For My Sunday Song #358, we are going to dive in to the title track of Aldo Nova’s 1991 comeback album ‘Blood on the Bricks’. The song kicks off the album and was the first single. It is also a collaboration between Aldo Nova and his long time friend Jon Bon Jovi. After Aldo helped Jon with his debut solo, Jon returned the favor and helped on this one. The song and the album were released on Jon’s own label Jambco Records which was part of Mercury Records.

The song is a dark view on inner city life. It is a sad commentary on the amount of crime in the big cities, the increase in gang violence, how unsafe life is there and a very unfavorable opinion of how the police handle it all. What is awful about this commentary is that 30 years later, it really isn’t any better and might be worse now. This song is really just as relevant today as it was back in 1991.

The drum barrage to kick it off gets the blood flowing. Then the guitars and bass coming roaring in and Aldo comes in with the vocals and there is a heck of a lot more energy as this song is a pure on rocker with heavy guitar, blistering riffs and a solo that will knock on your ass. The vocal deliver is a cross between Bon Jovi’s “Living on a Prayer” and Kiss’ “Hide Your Heart” as it is telling a story of a hard, rough life. Aldo does sound great, but it is the guitar’s that are the star here as Aldo rips and shreds all over the place with this one. The second star is Kenny Aronoff’s drumming as it is spectacular and the driving force to the song. A stellar comeback track for Aldo Nova!!

Continue reading “My Sunday Song – “Blood on the Bricks” by Aldo Nova”

Friday New Releases – April 28, 2023

How is we are already to the end of April…crazy. Well, things are starting to heat up here and definitely in the new releases. We get another Whitesnake Box Set and I am thrilled as Coverdale knows how to do these right. This one is on order and hopefully will arrive today. I’m also looking forward to Disciple and Colton Dixon who both are Christian artists just at each end of the spectrum…one metal, one pop. And that is it for me. What do you want to hear this week? Let me know what it is and what we may have missed even though we have around 45 release for you, we might’ve missed something. It happens. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

  • 91LDsOWcINL._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  Whitesnake – Still…Good to Be Bad (Super Deluxe Edition) – (Rhino Entertainment / Saltburn / Warner Music)
  • 816jwW6xMqL._AC_UY436_FMwebp_QL65_  Disciple – Skeleton Psalms – (BEC Recordings)
  • 71M6-Oxl-KL._AC_UL800_FMwebp_QL65_  Colton Dixon – Canvas – (Atlantic Records)

And all the rest….

Continue reading “Friday New Releases – April 28, 2023”

April 2023 Purchases – Vinyl & CDs & DVDs

Okay, grab a cup of coffee, sit back and relax as we are going to be here awhile as April turned in to a stellar month. And let’s just jump right in to this shall we. Before March even closed and after I wrote the March post on the purchases, this arrived in the mail…Needtobreathe’s Fan Club Exclusive vinyl autographed by the band. It is the 1st Edition from 2022 and took awhile to get here. And two weeks or so later. the 2nd Edition for 2023 arrived, autographed by the band. These are two of my favorite pieces now in my collection. As they are one of my favorite bands (after Kiss & Def Leppard of course).

And if that wasn’t enough with autographs, Jason Bieler released his latest album and I was able to grab on CD with his signature. I could’ve done vinyl, but I don’t have of his albums on vinyl so why start now. And this another great one. His stuff is so interesting and eclectic, Love it!!

Continue reading “April 2023 Purchases – Vinyl & CDs & DVDs”