Friday New Releases – September 6th

Summer is over and School is back in session, now we need some new music.  Who am I kidding, I don’t need a reason to want new music. Every week is a good week for that.  However, this week is a little limited on the releases.  There are quite a few, but not a lot to excite my senses.  There are a few I will check out and they are highlighted in Blue.  Let me know what interests you and what I might have missed.  Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend!!

  • A1JK4IW57yL._SS500_  Black Star Riders – Another State of Grace – (Nuclear Blast):  Black Star Riders are back with their fourth studio release and I am eager to hear what is in store as well as a little apprehensive since Damon Johnson is no longer in the band.  He was a big draw.  I will keep an open mind and give it a try as Ricky is still on vocals and Scott is still there as well, but I hate they are only down to 2 of the 5 original members.

  • 61UWCoZUdoL._SX522_  Lindsey Stirling – Artemis – (LindseyStomp Records/BMG):  This young lady plays one mean violin.  I find her to be sensational and always entertaining and I don’t expect this to be any different.  A couple vocal tracks on this one as well with guest Amy Lee and Elle King which should be incredible, but the highlight is always her playing.  If you haven’t checked her out, do yourself a service and do so.

Continue reading “Friday New Releases – September 6th”

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Black Star Riders – ‘Heavy Fire’ – Album Review

‘Heavy Fire’ is Black Star Riders third album in just 4 years and they keep getting better.  For those that don’t know Black Star Riders, the band is really made up of the current members of Thin Lizzy.  They wanted to release some new songs, but they didn’t want to release them as Thin Lizzy so they created Black Star Riders.

I think I understand why they did it.  If you think about it, was anyone looking to hear new music from Thin Lizzy…No, probably not.  This was actually a brilliant move as it caused a lot of buzz around the original release and here they are 4 years later getting better and better.

The band members are as follows:

  • Ricky Warwick – vocals
  • Scott Gorham – lead guitar
  • Damon Johnson – lead guitar
  • Robbie Crane – bass
  • Jimmy DeGrasso – drums

The album is a guitar heavy, hard rock release and you wouldn’t expect anything less when you have two lead guitarists.  The opening track and title track, “Heavy Fire”, comes screaming in with the guitars and a nice heavy sound.  Ricky sounds fantastic and they deliver a shot that resonates throughout the album.

The first single, “When the Night Comes In”, keeps up with the opening track and now you are completely invested in this album.  I love guitar rock and they bring it even more on this song.  “Dancing With the Wrong Girl” is a little more pop sound, but that doesn’t take away from anything, but actually adds to its charm.  Jimmy’s drums on this one are perfect.  They aren’t over powering and just enough that set perfectly in the song.

The heaviest and baddest song on the album is “Who Rides the Tiger”.  The song is a full on attack of your senses and even the lyrics are a blast.  They guitar solo was amazing and I don’t think I will ever tire of this duo of Scott & Damon.  This is probably my favorite song they have ever done.

“Cold War Love” is next up, but this is one song that I could never connect with.  It is a nice slow ballad, but I wasn’t feeling it.  Hopefully you can connect with it and enjoy it.  Luckily, the next song was their current single, “Testify or Say Goodbye”.  The song picks the tempo back up and gives us more of the what you love from this album.  The classic rock sound, the vocals and all around musicianship make it another standout on the album.

“Thinking About You Could Get Me Killed” gives us a little more darker sound and is a nice change of pace for the album without losing the flow of the album.  “True Blue Kid” is another song that misses the mark for me.  I can’t pinpoint what it is about the song, but I found myself skipping it which is never a good sign.

“Ticket to Rise” brings me back to the enjoyment with another solid guitar heavy song with a great solo.  Keep it coming and I won’t tire of it. “Letting Go of Me” is the only song on the album not co-written by Damon Johnson and yet it is still a great song.  This one was a fun song with a faster tempo.

The final track, “Fade”, is considered a bonus track but it is too good and fits nicely with the overall album. It doesn’t have the bonus track feel.  It is a slower song and actually kept my interest.  I usually like albums to end with a bang, but this worked for me nonetheless.  A nice way to end the album.

Track Listing:

  1. “Heavy Fire” – Keeper
  2. “When The Night Comes In” – Keeper
  3. “Dancing With the Wrong Girl” – Keeper
  4. “Who Rides the Tiger” – Keeper
  5. “Cold War Love” – Delete
  6. “Testify or Say Goodbye” – Keeper
  7. “Thinking About You Could Get Me Killed” – Keeper
  8. “True Blue Kid” – Delete
  9. “Ticket to Rise” – Keeper
  10. “Letting Go of Me” – Keeper
  11. “Fade” – Keeper

9 keeper out 11 songs – 82% (4.1 out 5 stars).  The Black Star Riders are killing it on this album.  I always talk about how rock today seems to be missing the guitar rock sound and these guys are not missing anything.  The guitars are outstanding and take me back to when guitars were king.  Nobody wanted to be a DJ, they wanted to play guitar.  For that alone this album is worth it, but it has so much more to offer.  Go grab a copy and get ready to have your ears blasted with what rock should sound like.

Friday New Releases – February 3rd

The year is already flying by as we are now in February in what seems like a blink of the eye. I am still getting through all of last week’s releases so luckily there are only 2 I find intriguing this week. They are highlighted in Blue.

  • 170x170bb-10  Black Star Riders – Heavy Fire – (Nuclear Blast):  Black Star Riders returns with their third album.  The band is basically Thin Lizzy but they are not using the name.  Not sure why, but regardless, I love the new material.  The first two albums were great and I feel they are just getting warmed up.  High hopes for the new release.

  • 71wxshqv-8l-_sx522_  Judas Priest – Turbo (30th Anniversary 3CD set) – (Sony Legacy):  Wow!  30 years since the release of Turbo.  I am looking forward to revisiting this classic Judas Priest album and eager to hear what special they might have added to this addition.  Here is the original video to “Turbo Lover” and the video was awful…sorry.

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