Category Archives: Dom Rini Reviews

CD Reviews on Maximum Threshold

CD Review: Life of Agony – A Place Where There’s No More Pain (2017 Napalm Records) 9/10

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CD Review: Life of Agony – A Place Where There’s No More Pain (2017 Napalm Records)

By: Dom Rini

Cutting through the chase let’s get down to business on this new release by Life Of Agony.  “A Place Where There’s No More Pain.” When a band takes a break or a hiatus coming back from that is pretty tough. But Life of Agony does not seem to have done this. What this band did was recharge their batteries and deliver a knock-out blow with their latest release.  Mina is on top with this one. Vocally, this release is a masterpiece even without the other elements of the other members contribution. This release is really catchy, easy to fall feel the vibe and the pocket of the entire release.

The title track “A Place Where There’s No More Pain” really sets the stage for the entire release, it may be an upbeat song by lyrically it hits you right in the heart. This release has covered so much ground in stretching their musical abilities. Opening this release with “Meet My Maker” shows the creativeness that is put into this one and you know this is going to be a helluva release.  Mina’s voice is at its best, to hear that check out the song “Dead Speak Kindly”  and “Right this Wrong.”  This release is a cornucopia of harmony, heavy guitars, pounding drums and vocally superior.  Great use of harmonizing and overdubbing vocals. Great emphasizing on the melodic phrasing throughout. “World Gone Mad” is a sweet upbeat/tempo track that should help put them back on the mainstream map.  Hooky, catchy and a really sweet track.  “Bag of Bones” gives you that down-tuning vibe of evilness, but it is cleverly masked. Mina shines in this one, a really nice breakdown as well. “Walking Catastrophe“ is a really sweet song, great melody lines. “Song For The Abused” delivers a different type of song, it stands out in this release. Its not a bad thing at all, it has its own feel to it. Closing out “A Place Where There’s No More Pain” is “Little Spots Of You” which gives you a dramatic ending of piano and Mina.

Overall: 9/10  If you were a fan of Life of Agony in the past, than you are in for a treat on this one. The band is extremely tight, lyrically and vocally a masterpiece, Alan does a great job and really tackles the blood thirst grooving side, Sal really shines on this one and Joey Z riffs it up big time!  It is full of a lot of messages, melody lines that keep you moving along with the release and you’ll find yourself hitting rewind on these.  I am really digging this and will keep in on high rotation. I am sure once I listen to it a good 20 times I will really be into it. Give “A Place Where There’s No More Pain” a chance to shine with your collection and play it LOUD!

Using the famed River Runs Red lineup featuring vocalist Mina Caputo, guitarist Joey Z, bassist Alan Robert, and drummer Sal Abruscato are excited to take the stage together once again this Spring.

Release Date:
28.04.2017

Tour Dates:

27.04.17 US – Allston, MA / Brighton Music Hall
28.04.17 US – New York, NY / Irving Plaza
29.04.17 US – Poughkeepsie, NY / The Chance
12.05.17 US – Stroudsburg, PA / Sherman Theater
13.05.17 US – Wantaugh, NY / Mulcahy’s
19.05.17 US – Lancaster, PA / Chameleon
20.05.17 US – Sayreville, NJ / Starland Ballroom

29.05.17 DE – Frankfurt / Batschkapp
30.05.17 CH – Zurich / Dynamo
31.05.17 FR – Lyon / CCO
02.06.17 ES – Barcelon / Razzmatazz 2
03.06.17 ES – Bilbao / Santana 27
04.06.17 ES – Madrid / Sala Penelope

09.-12.08.17 CZ – Josefov / Brutal Assault
12.08.17 NL – Leeuwarden / Into The Grave Festival
16.08.17 DE –  Münster Jovel
17.08.17 DE – Dinkelsbuehl / Summer Breeze Festival

23.08.17 DE – Leipzig Werk2

24.08.17 DE – Berlin Huxleys

For More Info Visit:
www.facebook.com/lifeofagonyfamiglia
www.lifeofagony.com

LoCash let it rip at the Cleveland House of Blues

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LoCash destroys Cleveland HOB 2/15/17

One of the most anticipated artist to roll through the Cleveland area made another return visit here. Last time was singing the national anthem at Game 2 of the World Series.

Armed with top hits on the charts and a custom LeBron James robe, the LoCash crusade delivered a knockout performance to the heavily packed venue at the Cleveland House of Blues. This show extra special to us. As the performance really was taken to the fans. The artists would walk through the crowd and sing with their fans. Keeping the crowd well into the mix of the music.

I was especially happy to see that the guys actually paid attention to my 8 year old daughter, they waved at her throughout the show and even stopped to give her guitar pics. LoCash is indeed one of her favorite artists and I am sure that her inclusion in this show will definitely keep her as a strong fan.

LoCash played a deep set and seemed to really be feeling the vibe on stage as they ran through their set and included classic country tracks from the 90’s to get the crowd singing with them. They even played a ZZ Top song. I could ramble on about this band as how great they sounded and the band members were on top of their game. The guitarist were phenomenal and yes even the keyboardist who tours with Poison was good with his rendition of a Journey classic.

Overall: well ranking a show of this caliber is quite easy is was a 9.9/10 a perfect 10 would by if pyro was added. I am sure they would add that at a larger venue. If you are looking for a fun show to check out please take some time and see LoCash when they roll through your town. It is well worth it.

 

CD Review – Bloodbound – War Of Dragons (2017 AFM Records)

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CD Review – Bloodbound – War Of Dragons (2017 AFM Records)

Bloodbound is back with another spectacular release. The Swedish onslaught brings to the fore-front an extremely powerful release that continues the power metal crusade that they have been doing sing the mid 2000’s. Garnering a large fan base with their powerful music and memorable live performances have made this band one of the premiere bands’ to thrive.

“War of Dragons” delivers everything you have grown to love about Bloodbound. The melodic lines throughout this release and the guitar shredding captivates the listeners and keeps you listening. It indeed continues with that European power metal style. It is a pretty sweet release that is far from wimpy. It delivers, it really does. Vocally  Selleby is on top of his game and really pulls the music together. Lyrically alone “War of Dragons” is an instant classic.  This release takes you on a journey and the lyrics are outstanding and stands out.  The Olsson’s do such a great job of pulling the trigger on setting the world on fire with the guitars. Fredrik Bergh on keyboards really stands out on this release. “King of Swords” really reflects this notion. Plus its one of the heaviest tracks on it.

If you are up against the wall on Bloodbound and have not heard of them you need to take a chance on these guys.

Bloodbound- War Of Dragons

 1. A New Era Begins
 2. Battle In The Sky
 3. Tears Of A Dragonheart
 4. War Of Dragons
 5. Silver Wings
 6. Stand And Fight
 7. King Of Swords
 8. Fallen Heroes
 9. Guardians At Heaven’s Gate
10. Symphony Satana
11. Starfall

12. Dragons Are Forever

available as CD, 2CD Digipak, ltd. colored Vinyl & ltd. Box Set

 

LINE- UP:
Patrik J Selleby – vocals
Tomas Olsson – guitars
Henrik Olsson – guitars
Anders Broman – bass
Fredrik Bergh – keyboards
(currently vacant)– drums

www.bloodbound.se

CD Review – Sainted Sinners – Sainted Sinners (2017 El Puerto Records Gbr)

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Ready for some fresh new music to come your way? Are you into the sound of classic Whitesnake, Rainbow, and Deep Purple? Well, these guys put together an outstanding release that will pull you into them. I am talking about the band Sainted Sinners. Fronted with former Accept vocalist David Reece and a great back-lining artist bring the self titled release to the fore-front which is produced by Chris Tsangarides (Judas Priest, Thin Lizzy).  Few of the tracks on this release are powerful, especially with the strong blues influence. It is indeed a guitarist band. Riff after riff and the vocals really bring it full circle.

The most powerful song on this release is “We’re All Sainted Sinners.” Think this song captivates the entire feeling of this release. It has the strength of the vocals as well as the hooky chorus and riff completes it.  “Knight Of The Long Knives” is a classic track that really sets the stage for what to expect, complete with that Rainbow vibe and the lyrics are powerful and chorus is full of catchy juiciness.  “Beauty In The Beast” has a groovy upbeat rhythm to it that makes you want to move around where you are and does not let down. “Blue Lightning Man” sheds that southern swampy vibe, and clean rockin’ upbeat song. Pretty cool to listen to the buildup of the song. Vocally one of the better tracks on this release. “In Need” ah back to the bluesy vibe and the talk about the hard times. Definitely has a ZZ Top feel to it, which is a good thing.

This release is really colorful. Has alot of feeling, expression and lyrically and vocally a masterpiece. It is a really “groove” oriented release and a throw-back kinda vibe. It is a nice feeling release. There are no downsides on this one.

“I feel a very strong sense of pride! I feel it’s a great representation of who I and we are”, summarizes DAVID REECE, who calls the eleven tracks colorful. “Concerning the logistic distance between everybody and the fact that we just started as a band, it’s a very promising debut with many albums to follow”, rejoices FRANK PANÉ. And it becomes obvious, that »Sainted Sinners« is the beginning of a new, exciting hard rocking fairytale.

So if you are looking for something fresh but with that older vibe to it you need to check these guys out and grab this release when it comes out. You will be really satisfied.

SAINTED SINNERS – Sainted Sinners

El Puerto Records
US Release Date: February 24th, 2017

TRACK LISTING:

  1. Knight Of The Long Knives
  2. Beauty In The Beast
  3. Maybe She’s Got Balls
  4. We’re All Sainted Sinners
  5. Blue Lightning Man
  6. The Love That I Have Found
  7. Did You
  8. In Need
  9. Evangeline
  10. Shine Diamond Girl
  11. Truth Is A Lie

www.facebook.com/SaintedSinners
saintedsinners.com

CD Review: Words That Burn – REGRET IS FOR THE DEAD (2016)

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Words That Burn – REGRET IS FOR THE DEAD (2016)

Yes, these bad asses are back at it again! This time the rain has soaked in the ground and everyone had the opportunity to delve deep into their last release “Praey” and it was a success. Words That Burn drew much international attention from their debut and took the time and dedication to follow it up with their latest effort “Regret is For the Dead.”

Overall: 9.5/10Regret is For The Dead” the new release and the vibe is strong and it pulls you in and captivates you.  This release does this to a “T.”  Give this release a few spins and understanding the vibe of the overall; this CD clearly does it. “Regret is For The Dead”, “is like getting your skull smashed in by a speeding truck side-swiping it!”

My favorite tracks on this release are “Unalive“, “Scars” and “In This Moment,” “Hush“, it is really hooky, great drive and power driven vocally as well as musically. As with this release each track is melodically driven and delivers the punch and does not let down. These guys have got to be great to see live. Especially when they perform their newer material.  If you are looking for something fresh and new sounding check out these guys Words That Burn and grab this release today!

Words That BurnRegret is For The Dead (2016)

Tracklisting

  • Our New Sin
  • Unalive
  • Disappear
  • Chalklines
  • Hush
  • Scars
  • Mirror Perfect Mannequin
  • In This Moment
  • The Phoenix
  • Last Breath

In late 2014 WTB signed International record, distribution and publishing deal with Wormholedeath / Aural Records / Warner Chappell Holland (BV). The band hit the rehearsal rooms in January 2015 to hone their sound further and take it to the next level. In July of the same year they flew to beautiful Tuscany in Italy, where they spent a month recording their first full length offering.

Words That Burn
www.facebook.com/wordsthatburn
www.twitter.com/words_that_burn
wordsthatburnband@gmail.com

Styx – Northfield Hard Rocksino and Interview with Lawrence Gowan (Keyboardist/vox Styx)

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Styx – Northfield Hard Rocksino and Interview with Lawrence Gowan (keyboardist/vox Styx)

November 15, 2016

A sold out show at the Rocksino.  It was very evident that this was going to be a great evening. The crowd  in attendance were really excited. The show was sold out months previously. As anticipated, the band bursted onto the stage and performed to the enthusiastic crowd.  Everyone in the venue was standing and really feeling the music. The band’s set consisted of all their greatest hits as well as some deep cuts from their catalog. It was indeed everything you expected from a Styx performance.

Please listen to the interview conducted with keyboardist Lawrence Gowan as we talk about his tenure in the band. Pretty exciting material covered.

 

 

 

CD Review: INDOMINUS – “Legion Within” (2016 Roxx Records)

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indominusINDOMINUS – “Legion Within” release is pretty easy to get a feeling of it. “This release sounds like a nuclear holocaust of mass proportion.”  If you think that INDOMINUS just released a CD that was wimpy or had some filler tracks on it, you would be sadly mistaken. This 5 song release features destruction in every song.

Backbone” sets the stage for this release. It is just a straight up ass-whoopin’ song. Heavy as hell and keeps you in the loop of the song. “Fragile Existence” is the continuation the destruction.  This track is powerful. There is some really sick riffs on this release that you need to hear, as in the song “Leeches” which will make you think “what the hell is he doing.” It is powerful and the vocals are extremely strong, the chorus is pretty hooky which is a great feeling and keeps the vibe alive. I enjoyed the chugging in the song, had that Exodus feel to it. The title track “Legion Within” has that European riffing intro and heavy dropped down pounding squeals. The guitar seems to be in a different realm than the rest of the band which is a great thing. He is playing the melody line over the pounding. Vocally, just hearing him sing (scream) really starts to scare the listener. Such an evil vibe in this track. Heavy as hell and scary as all hell as well, killer little solo in this song as well. Closing the release is “Shadow.” This is a moshing masterpiece, great vibe and chugging. Really feeling this song. Nice melodic guitar driven lines through this song as well. I highly recommend you diving in a letting this song soak in.

Overall: INDOMINUS – “Legion Within” comes in as straight up ass-whoopin or a bat to the skull. You can’t go wrong with these guys. If you are looking for something heavy, melodic and unrelentless you need to get a hold of these cats and really dive into this cauldron of chaos. 4/5 Horns!

Contact INDOMINUS

Email | Facebook | Youtube | Official

Lead Vocals – Currently looking,
Guitar – Logan,
Lead Guitar – Simon,
Bass – Mark,
Drums – Nathan.

The band formed in early 2016, out of the dissolution of a previous band. The band worked tirelessly on new music and signed with USA label Roxx Records to release their debut EP entitled “Legion Within” – which was released as of September 2nd 2016. The band has appeared at multiple European festivals, for example MetalYard in Enschede, Holland.

CD Review: RAVENEYE – Nova (2016 Frontiers Music s.r.l)

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raveneyeRavenEye – Nova (2016 Frontiers Music s.r.l)

The latest release by UK masters RavenEye breaks the mold with Nova. Shedding a refreshing sound to the current stale vibe out there.

Guess you can say this band and release has that sound that crosses a Soundgarden meets Crobot with a Sabbathy feel to it.  Great groove, great lyrics, vocally a masterpiece.  Track after track is completely different but yet is harmoniously in sinc.

Nova will make you happy you purchased this release by RavenEye. This is easy a 9.5 / 10

Do yourself a favor and check them out.

Track Listing for NOVA:

  1. Wanna Feel You
  2. Come With Me
  3. Inside
  4. Hero
  5. Supernova
  6. Walls
  7. Oh My Love
  8. Madeline
  9. Hate
  10. Out Of The Rain
  11. Eternity

About RavenEye

Since forming in 2014, the band has toured globally, supporting bands such as The Darkness, Slash, Deep Purple, Halestorm and Blues Pills. The band has headlined their own tours through Europe and America and have performed at major international rock festivals such as Download Festival (UK), Hellfest Open Air Festival (France), Azkena Rock Festival ARF (Spain), Rock For People (OFFICIAL) (Czech Republic), Louder Than Life (U.S.), and Aftershock Festival (U.S.), and will also perform at this year’s Maximus Festival in Brazil and Argentina this September.  Their incendiary live shows have captivated crowds and put them on the map as a ‘must see live’ band.

Warren Riker (Lauryn Hill, Michael Jackson, Down, Anders Osborne), who engineered the debut EP, took over as producer to capture the band’s true sonic identity on NOVA. Together, Oli Brown, Aussie bassist Aaron Spiers and renowned drummer Gunnar Olsen worked at Water Music in Hoboken, New Jersey for 25 days and created an eleven-track album that pushed the band beyond its boundaries and into new ground. From the hard hitting riffs of “Inside”, “Madeline” and “Hero” to the raw sounds of “Wanna Feel You” and “Oh My Love’ to the stark reality of life and death in “Eternity”, NOVA takes you on a journey of defiance, pain, hate, death and, yes, love. See below for links to two music video premieres of “Hero” and “Inside”:

Power-rock trio RavenEye was formed by multi-award winning guitarist/singer Oli Brown along with drummer Kev Hickman and bassist Aaron Spiers. Having already toured Spain, France and Italy, RavenEye has been slamming audiences with their signature heavy riffs and incendiary live show. Whether it be straddling a bass drum high into the night or jumping into a raucous crowd, RavenEye is a high-energy rock act not to be missed.

Oli Brown has spent 10 years touring the world under his own name and in that time released 4 albums and has established himself as one of the most formidable guitarists/front men in the UK scene. Kev Hickman has also seen his fair share of international touring, and with an unforgettable stage presence he has developed an intense, hi-octane performance. Aaron Spiers tore into the UK in 2012 and since then has established himself as a force to be reckoned with on stage, he’s also released several solo albums and written scores for orchestras in Australia.

After meeting and creating music together, they all knew that this would be their musical future, here begins RavenEye.

Members

Oli Brown
Aaron Spiers
Adam Breeze

CD Review – Secret Sphere : One Night in Tokyo (2016 Frontiers Music s.r.l.)

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secret_sphere_onit_cover_hi-jpgCD Review: Secret Sphere : One Night in Tokyo (2016 Frontiers Music s.r.l.)

Oct 14th release date.

The Italian band that has been a Japanese sensation SECRET SPHERE bring to the forefront this new release showcasing their greatest hits live. Armed with vocalist Michele Luppi, this album helps expand their feverish fanbase in Japan to the rest of the world. Luppi indeed pushes the envelope on the vocal power that he holds.  When not doing the SECRET SPHERE he is the keyboardist in world-wide touring band Whitesnake.

This release is such a great recording and there isn’t anything in it that is filler. It is hit after hit and with true power.  If you have never heard of SECRET SPHERE you need to dive in and give them a listen.   SECRET SPHERE gives you that European prog vibe and great vocals and the band has that strong chemistry and gel that is hard to find in a band, and it shows on this magical live release.

Aldo Lonobile says: “Since I started the band, the idea of recording our first live album in Japan, was the ultimate goal! All my musical heroes described their experiences in Japan with a happiness and a warmth that you could almost feel. That was the truth, among the most loyal fans in the world, and I am 100% happy that Frontiers liked the idea to release our first live album!”

“One Night In Tokyo” track listing:

CD1

01. Intro: A Journey Through Time
02. X
03. Healing
04. Union
05. The Fall
06. Lie To Me
07. Wish And Steadiness
08. Legend
09. Under The Flag Of Mary Read
10. The Scars That You Can’t See
11. Eternity

CD2

01. Mr. Sin
02. Leonardo Da Vinci
03. Lady Of Silence
04. Dance With The Devil
05. Lie To Me (studio bonus track; duet with Anette Olzon)
DVD:

01. Intro: A Journey Through Time
02. X
03. Healing
04. Union
05. The Fall
06. Lie To Me
07. Wish And Steadiness
08. Legend
09. Under The Flag Of Mary Read
10. The Scars That You Can’t See
11. Eternity
12. Mr. Sin
13. Leonardo Da Vinci
14. Lady Of Silence
15. Dance With The Devil

SECRET SPHERE

Michele Luppi: Vocals
Aldo Lonobile: All Lead and Rhythm Guitars
Andrea Buratto: Bass
Marco Pastorino: Rhythm Guitars and Backing Vocals

Expected release date is Oct 14-   Secret Sphere : One Night in Tokyo (2016 Frontiers Music s.r.l.)

CD Review – JIM BREUER AND THE LOUD & ROWDY SONGS FROM THE GARAGE (Metal Blade Records 2016)

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CoverComedian Jim Breuer is back with a new hard rockin’ metal CD and it will blow your mind. The latest release JIM BREUER AND THE LOUD & ROWDY SONGS FROM THE GARAGE is definitely something you are going to really enjoy diving into.

This release gives you all the fun and nutty experiences that Jim has been going through being a garage rocker. It’s sort of a concept CD with the idea of an older family guy who is rocker at heart and lives his childhood dreams of being a rockstar but the parts of being a dad and husband kind of holds his creativity back. So he unleashes it in his privacy and does what all rockin’ kids did, put the headphones on loud and just raise hell.

Jim Breuer – photo by Dom Rini

JIM BREUER AND THE LOUD & ROWDY SONGS FROM THE GARAGE was produced by Rob Caggiano, the famed guitarist (ex Anthrax / and current Volbeat). Caggiano really made this record top notch and you can tell that he was striving for perfection on this one. A grammy winner helps Breuer to make this album a historic classic. Be it a comedy record but it sounds great. So it sort of takes it to a different level. This release would be great to be in rotation on your iPod or whatever with Steel Panther.  The music is phenomenal, lyrically Breuer pulls a masterpiece out of his, you know! Very impressed.  Breuer’s vocals was something that I was not expecting to hear on this release. Breuer actually pulls this off and believe that he will no doubt inspire kids and adults to sing. Hey he’s got it! Plus on this release he has guest vocalist Brian Johnson (ex AC/DC) to lay down a track on the song “Mr. Rock n Roll” and yes it delivers.  You can look at this as a credibility mover on this one. I think it helps it out to push this release. But the release holds up on it’s own. Johnson just gives this Lamborghini record a high gloss to it.

Jim Breuer – photo by Dom Rini

Overall: 9.5/10 Given that this is in my opinion a crossover release from being a straight up comedy album to a hard rockin’ metal CD this combines all the fruits and nuts from both aisles. It comes together great like a sweet marinated juicy steak. It’s perfectly seasoned. Jim has been at it for years and this is indeed his greatest of all his classics.

Jim Breuer and the Loud & Rowdy, Songs From the Garage Track Listing:

1. “Thrash”
2. “Raising Teenage Girls”
3. “Old School”
4. “Be a Dick 2nite”
5. “My Rock n Roll Dream”
6. “Mr. Rock n Roll”
7. “Who’s Better Than Us?!”
8. “Family Warrior”
9. “Sugar Rush”
10. “Wannabe”
11. “The Unexplained”

Get the new release HERE

Jim Breuer – Official | FB | Twitter | Youtube

Jim Breuer – photo by Dom Rini at Rock on the Range

WHITESNAKE – Performed the Greatest Hits at Northfield Hard Rocksino

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davidcoverdale
David Coverdale

June 11th marked the return of Whitesnake to Northfield Hard Rocksino. In one of the record breaking attendances at the venue the fans were delivered knock out punches song after song. It was indeed “The Greatest Hits Tour.”  From the opening note the crowd was engaged. It was really nice to see people in the farthest away seats

Whitesnake’s Reb Beach

standing up and rocking out with Whitesnake.

A few of the key things from the show, David Coverdale was on fire. His vocals are still holding up and of course is dominating on stage, pulling the audience into him and the band. Michael Devin did a great bass solo and really made some new fans from his performance. Mad axemen Reb Beach and Joel Hoekstra tore the ceiling down with their solos. The monster behind the kit, Tommy Aldridge left the fans jaws dropped to the floor with his glorifying drum solo. Extremely memorable.

Whitesnake’s Joel Hoekstra

You expect greatness at a Whitesnake show and this one was no exception. Everyone left the show excited and the performance was the best.

Dom Rini and Derek St. Holmes

Opening the show was Whitford / St. Holmes. Aerosmith’s guitarist and Ted Nugent’s bad-men are out and performing their hard rockin’ bluesy tunes and building up their fan-base once again.  It was nice to see these guys really putting it out there to the ‘Snake fans. A few little classic cuts from the Aerosmith catalog and the Nuge’s as well spiced up the show and drew the crowd in to them. It was evident that it worked by the standing ovation they received at the end of their performance.

Whitesnake's Joel Hoekstra - Northfield Hard Rocksino
Whitesnake’s Joel Hoekstra – Northfield Hard Rocksino

Overall: If you love Whitesnake, get your butt to a show and support these cats. They will bring the roof down and you will not regret it.

CD Review FIRST SIGNAL – One Step Over The Line (Frontiers Music S.R.L. 2016)

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FIRST_SIGNAL_osotl_COVER_HICD Review FIRST SIGNAL – One Step Over The Line (Frontiers Music S.R.L. 2016)

FIRST SIGNAL are at it with Harry Hess in the front and unleash a magical release titled “One Step Over The Line.” This is a melodic hard rocking record with some great vibes that trickle throughout this release. “Love run Free” the opening track definitely sets the stage for this release. It is that great throwback sound to the early 80’s. You would definitely feel like you was at a mix up of Foreigner meets Def Leppard. It’s a refreshing sound a vibe to it.

Armed with Producer Dennis Ward this record soars to new lands and such a nice crisp sound. Very creative approach to this one. “Still Pretending” a solid ballad settles the soul and brings an instant smile to your face. It has that melodic and harmonious prowess that really pulls you into it. “Kharma” is a great track and keeps the vibe in-tact from the beginning of the record. Great guitar solo. This album is extremely cohesive, it doesn’t have any songs that just doesn’t belong on this one. “She Is Getting Away” is that power ballad track that bops you upside your head and makes you really listen to the structure of the song and the great vocals, hooky chorus, and strong keyboards. “December Rain” seems to be one of the strongest tracks on this release. The vocals are strong, lyrically a masterpiece, chorus is dead-on, and is just a great song. You’ll be humming along with it by the end of the song, that’s how strong this one is. “Weigh Me In” has to be my favorite track on this release. It has a glorious kind of sound to it. It’s a happy song, and has that anthemic feeling to it. Vocally all you can say is wow. It’s a powerhouse song.

Overall: If you are into the AOR/Arena music and melodic rock music and looking for something that will touch your soul, you need to get FIRST SIGNAL’s “One Step Over The Line.” You will easily be soothed!

Tracklist

  • 01.Love run free
  • 02.Love gets through
  • 03.Still pretending
  • 04.Broken
  • 05.Kharma
  • 06.Minute of your time
  • 07.She is getting away
  • 08.December rain
  • 09.Weigh me in
  • 10.Pedestal
  • 11.One step over the line

Musicians on the album include the outstanding new talent Michael Palace on guitars and bass, Daniel Flores on drums and keyboards and background vocals from Hess Harem Scarem bandmate (and Red Dragon Cartel singer) Darren Smith, Alessandro Del Vecchio, Nigel Bailey, Daniel Flores, Rolf Pilotti and Angelica Rylin.
Another Melodic Rock gem hits the market and an absolute contender for the AOR album of the year!

FIRST SIGNAL
Harry Hess – Lead and backing vocals
Michael Palace – Acoustic, electric guitar and bass
Daniel Flores – Keyboards and Drums
Additional musicians:
Francesco Marras (solo on She is getting away and Love gets through)
Backing vocals: Darren James Smith, Harry Hess, Alessandro Del Vecchio, Nigel Bailey, Daniel Flores, Rolf Pilotti and Angelica Rylin
Produced by Daniel Flores

METAL CHURCH proves the Congregation is still strong in Cleveland

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Metal Church - Cleveland - L-R- Vanderhoof, Howe, Plate, Unger, Caffery
Metal Church – Cleveland – L-R- Vanderhoof, Howe, Plate, Unger, Caffery

METAL CHURCH – Cleveland, OH – Cleveland Agora 4/6/2016

Vanderhoof and Unger

April 6th marked the return to Cleveland by the legendary band METAL CHURCH. A revitalized band with the return of Mike Howe ( 20 year absence) on vocals fulfilled the anticipated fans. It was really great to see this band in action with Howe on vocals and Chris Caffery filling in on lead guitar. It was evident from the beginning of the show that these guys were excited and having fun on stage together. There were smiles on all their faces and the crowd reacted positively to this. For having Chris Caffery jump on board in a short period and to fill the shoes make his add-in

Chris Caffery – Cleveland

perfect. You can feel the chemistry between them and they were extremely tight. The highlight was indeed Mike Howe, his voice was incredible, he made the hairs on the back of your neck raise by his adoring vocals. You could close your eyes and remember when you was a kid listening to tracks off “The Dark”,  “Blessing in Disguise, and “The Human Factor” and just smile. The new material went over great and he was spot on.

Kurdt Vanderhoof – Cleveland – photo by Dom Rini

Overall:  10/10 This show was tremendous from beginning to end. The highlights, Mike Howe in top form, the band had a strong chemistry and was tight, Chris Caffery fit in great, Jeff Plate put on a drum clinic, Steve Unger had great control of the stage and performed great and his back up vocals were top notch. The Riffmaster General Kurdt Vanderhoof, well what can you say he is a master and will always be one! There were a few songs that I really looked forward to hearing that was cut out probably due to the new material such as the songs “Metal Church”, and “Ton of Bricks.” With or without them this show was still the best of the year!

Mike Howe

METAL CHURCH Cleveland Setlist
1. Fake Healer
2. In Mourning
3. Start the Fire
4. Reset
5. Gods of Second Chance
6. Date with Poverty
7. No Tomorrow
8. Watch the Children Pray
9. No Friend of Mine
10. Killing Your Time
11. Beyond the Black

Encore:
12. Badlands
13. The Human Factor

From L-R- Frank, Jason Causely, MT’s Michael Strong and Dom Rini

CD Review – FILTER – “Crazy Eyes” (Wind-up Records 2016)

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Filter_CrazyEyes_Cover_RGBFilter – Crazy Eyes (Wind-up Records 2016)

The latest release by Filter is planned to drop on April 8th. What to expect in this release? A lot of emotion, reality, and a push back to the roots. Richard Patrick is back at it with Crazy Eyes and this is definitely a strong industrial hypnotic release with full of power and ferocity.

Starting off Crazy Eyes is the track “Mother E” which really sets the stage for this release. It takes you to that hidden place in your head where the emotions are staged and figured out. Lyrically this is phenomenal. It’ll pull you into it. “Nothing in My Hands” is a continuation but the chorus is pretty hooky and is really spot on. “Pride Flag” is another message song which is a strong brewed track with a pretty sweet chorus. “City of Blinding Riots” has some pretty good melodic lines to it. ”Take Me To Heaven” is a pretty exciting track to dive in to. This song has a nice vibe to roll over to mainstream radio. It has a nice drum groove and catchy hooky chorus and pretty sweet riff. “Welcome to the Suck” comes across as an anthemic track. Great build ups. “Head of Fire” the signature bass opening riff lets you know this is a Filter song and has a nice buildup. Bridge build up to the chorus is pretty nice, it’s like an elegant train derailment but it keeps you going with it all the way through. “Tremors” industrial at its best is mostly what I got out of this one. It’s erratic, one of Richard’s best vocal track, and a nice flow to the song. Lyrically, this song has such strong meanings engulfed in it and the message is reached with no problem. “Kid Blue From the Short Bus, Drunk Bus” has a really powerful flow with it. What is lacks in the industrial mix makes up with it in the strong chorus and great lyrics. Really catchy song, one you really melt with and become one with it. “Your Bullets” is a right in your face song. One of the heaviest tracks on this release. Its intense, powerful and great flow make this one of the favored songs on “Crazy Eyes.”  “Under Tongue” starts off with a with a nice pounding piece of drums and bass and then the experimentation begins. Nice progression in this song. “(Can’t She See) Head of Fire, Part 2” delivers the proper ending in this release. This song is an emotional roller coaster ride and doesn’t get heavy but pulls you into it almost as if it was a dream. Pretty interesting to end the release on.

Overall: Filter – “Crazy Eyes” is a strong 8.5 / 10. Gotta love it that Richard Patrick brought back the old Filter vibe. Lyrically this release is a masterpiece. When the songs buildup and unloads it is straight-up genius. It’s an emotional release full of meaning and strong messages.