Since Badlands’ 1991 release, Voodoo Highway, Jake E. Lee has led an incredibly low-profile musical existence. He has resurfaced from time to time with a few solo releases and a very short club tour with the short lived band Wicked Alliance, but none of his projects seem to take root and before too long he would be back living under the radar. Read more
It looks like 2014 is getting off to a killer start for Kivel Records with its latest release Unhinged, first from new labelmates Madman’s Lullaby. Right from the first track “What If” I could hear the influence from some of the late 80’s best hard rock acts such as Tesla and, especially vocally, early Lynch Mob. This record has tons of groove and some very clever lyrics. If you’re looking for a feel good kind of album with romantic tunes with everyone in a happy state, turn away! Read more
It’s really hard to imagine that Precious Metal is the 9th studio album from House of Lords but then again after 1992’s Demon’s Down who would have thought that HOL would have to wait another 12 years to get to record album number 4? In fact during those 12 years from 1992-2004 I played those first three albums constantly, always in regular rotation especially on long drives because those records were just that damn good. Read more
The only reason there’s peace in Ireland is because we’re all over here!” – Dave King at the House of Blues, Boston
Flogging Molly played the House of Blues Boston last Wednesday to a packed house. Boston is a very Irish town and provided a lively audience for the Celtic punk band. For those of you unfamiliar with Flogging Molly: when I say Celtic punk, I don’t mean they are a punk band that simply started in Ireland. They are just as much Irish folk as anything else. To give you an idea of the atmosphere: picture a night at the Black Rose with an incredibly good and hard rocking band. Now, pack in 2400 people and add a mosh pit.
This is the 10th year of Flogging Molly’s Green 17 Tour. Each year, they take to the road around St. Patrick’s Day to support Boston’s hardest drinking holiday (no, New Year’s Eve isn’t close). Other bands do well to throw picks and drumsticks to the crowd. These guys throw cans of Guinness (really). No contest what I’d rather be catching.
I myself have had plenty of great St. Patrick’s days in Boston. After graduation, I moved in to a house in Southie (Boston’s Irish district) with 4 of my college buddies1 and one dog. When I say it was a dog, I’m being charitable. I doubt that Dreyfus had two brain cells to rub together. Incredibly stupid, and on top of that, my housemate Russ actively trained him to hump people’s legs. The house was right on the parade route, so we always had a huge St Patrick’s Day party. During these parties, we used food coloring to dye the dog green. With all the attention people lavished on Dreyfus, he had to be the happiest green dog in the world. No one even complained very much about the leg humping.2
Covering Irish bands like Flogging Molly brings me back to these wild parties. In addition to the standard rock instruments, this largish 7 piece band has people manning the accordion, flute, violin, mandolin, and banjo. These instruments help give the band their folk sound. For example, listen to Drunken Lullabies for great banjo and violin, and Devil’s Dance Floor features a flute and accordion riffing off of each other.
The band played “Rise Up” as a tribute to folk singer / activist Pete Seegar who passed away this January. Seegar, always one to stand up for what he thought was right, was blacklisted and indicted for contempt of Congress during the McCarthy era. Check out his Wikipedia entry, it is an interesting read. Also credited with popularizing the banjo as an American folk instrument, Seeger got a dedication stenciled on the band’s banjo.
Bridget Regan the band’s flautist and violinist is not only an incredible musician, but also married the front man Dave King. I guess the family that tours together stays together. However, while combing through the night’s photos, I came across this spousal moment. Hilarious. Her face is just shouting, “Back off honey, I’m busy.”
Flogging Molly puts on a great show. For the last decade, they’ve been getting people in the St. Patrick’s Day spirit with the Green 17 Tour. So go see them and have a happy St. Patty’s day. Just keep a wary eye on the green dog.
1 Five if you count Eugene, who crashed for a while for free on the back screened in porch in a kind of semi-homeless state.
2 After we moved out of the house, we saddled Eugene and Ed’s parents with Dreyfus. I’d just like to apologize to Mrs. Sweeney for any “training” issues they may have had, and would like to point out that it was all Russ’ fault.
- Wailing Wall
- Paddy’s Lament
- Every Dog
- Whistles the Wind
- Drunken Lullabies
- Tenement Square
- Saints and Sinners
- Requiem for a Dying Song
- Present State of Grace
- Son Neve Shines
- Us of Lesser Gods
- Tobacco Island
- Rare Old Times
- Devil’s Dance Floor
- Likes of You
- Rise Up
- Salty Dog
- What’s Left of the Flag
- Seven Deadly Sins
- World Alive
Check out our photo gallery from the Flogging Molly show:
Russell Allen may well be the greatest singer on the planet at this time and I was really looking forward to the Mob’s second album Men of Honor. What really was going to be the wild card with this release was new drummer A.J. Pero of Twisted Sister fame. With the success of The Winery Dogs, Mike Portnoy had to leave yet another band he created.
Let’s face it A.J. has nothing to prove in terms of his chops to Mob fans and the metal community at large but it has to do more with his style and it fitting into the rest of the band while making sure there is no drop off with the departure of Portnoy. Well I’m happy to report that not only is Pero a welcome addition to the Mob family but this record truly represents a milestone in the Allen legacy as this album is better than the first record Omerta (2012) and quite possibly my favorite Allen album ever. Full of vigor, melodic charm and beastly range Allen carries Men of Honor which is now my favorite album so far in 2014 and will be tough to top moving forward. Read more
Reviewed by: B. Cross
Want some classic shred backed by harsh vocals and some serious power-thrash melodies? Your search has ended. Marking their Prosthetic Records debut, Exmortus recently unleashed their third album Slave to the Sword.
“Rising” kicks things right into high gear with blistering dual guitars that would make Judas Priest proud. Jadran “Conan” Gonzales and David Rivera showcase extreme talent and musicianship across the entire record, and the rhythm section of Jovanni Perez (bass) and Mario Moreno (drums) are not to be denied, either. There’s enough low end and double-bass pounding to make any fan raise their horns in triumph. Read more
Well it’s great to see that even though RATT is hard at work on a new album for 2014 vocalist and sometimes solo artist Stephen Pearcy still feels like hitting the road (in the Northeast no less) in January for a round of dates performing with his RATT Bastards solo band.
Add into the mix local rock legends MASS as an opener (also soon to start work on a new record) and this has the potential to be a night of power rock with an old school flavor. That’s really what this show felt like to me. Stepping back in time for sure and kudos to Club Rain for making it feel like an 80’s rock show with spacious new amenities, great lighting and a world class sound system. Anyone who remembers Narcissus in Kenmore Square or The Channel recalls that Boston did have great clubs at one time. Let’s hope the management at Rain keeps booking national acts and the task of bringing in the crowds will take care of itself. Read more
What happens when two bands you can’t miss are both playing the same night? Well, if the set-time stars align in just the right way, you may be able to turn an ordinary concert experience into a Build-Your-Own-Festival, which is precisely what I did this weekend with the sultry Cate Le Bon playing an early show at the Middle East Upstairs, and the dynamic gaggle that is Mother Falcon headlining a late show at Great Scott. Read more
Reviewed By: Roger Scales
What a banner year 2013 has been for fans of melodic rock music. Search no further than Kivel Records which has added yet another stellar band to its already impressive Kamp lineup. No Love Lost is a Carolina based band that brings aspects of Whitesnake, Triumph, early Def Leppard and Tesla thrown into a little bit of a mix of Badlands and Keel on the side. These are the groups I heard when I gave their impressive debut self-titled album a first listen. Read more
Reviewed by: Roger Scales
Perfect Shade of Black is the second release from the L.A. based band Edge of Paradise featuring the partnership of Margarita Monet on vocals and Dave Bates on guitar. Formed in 2011 their first record Mask featured a rhythm section of Tony Franklin and Greg Bissonette added along with Monet and Bates. The album was co-written by rock legend Robin McAuley and was guitar heavy, hook orientated metal but contained many modern progressive elements. Fast forward to 2013 and the new E.P. Perfect Shade of Black picks up right where the band left off and also shows some musical maturity in the songwriting and production as well. Also by adding in a new bass player Nick Ericson and drummer John Chominsky Edge of Paradise has the potential to be one of the top new bands to watch out for heading into 2014. Read more