Πέμπτη, 6 Οκτωβρίου 2011

Pat Benatar Ultimate Best of compilation by JRD

The Lady of Rock; Not only a gorgeous woman but also a roaring performer. Pat dominated the early 80's with some of the best songs by female artists in rock and later on with some of the most outrageously catchy pop anthems.In the 90's, when her platimun and golden days were over and hipsters mocked her songs, she continued with some low profile but more than decent albums and of course she never stopped touring. It took me a while to compile these songs, I wanted to gather all her great songs from the glory days, hit or no hits, add some live cuts of her fan favorites and some of the unknown stuff from the latest albums, trace some songs that worked better live than studio etc etc, in short I wanted to give you a clear picture of what Pat benatar really is. Wherever I could I replaced original masters with better sounding remasters, that's why the sound quality varies. No lame singles here, just the crop of the material that was graced with Pat's amazing voice.

01. Heartbreaker (1979-In the heat of the night)
02. Hell is for children (1980-Crimes of passion)
03. Hit me with your best shot (1980-Crimes of passion)
04. Treat me right (1980-Crimes of passion)
05. Wuthering heights (1980-Crimes of passion)
06. Evil genius (1981-Precious time)
07. Fire and ice (1981-Precious time)
08. Hell is for children (1981-From the front row:live)
09. In the heat of the night (1981-From the front row:live)
10. Out of touch (1981-From the front row:live)
11. Precious time (1981-Precious time)
12. Precious time (1981-From the front row:live)
13. Promises in the dark (1981- Precious time)
14. Treat me right (1981-From the front row)
15. We live for love (1981-From the front row:live)
16. Anxiety (1982-Get nervous)
17. Fight it out (1982-Get nervous)
18. I'll do it (1982-Get nervous)
19. Looking for a stranger (1982-Get nervous)
20. Shadows in the night (1982-Get nervous)
21. Tell it to her (1982-Get nervous)
22. The victim (1982-Get nervous)
23. Heartbreaker (1983-Live from earth)
24. Love is a battlefield (edit) (1983-Live from earth:studio song)
25. Promises in the dark (1983-Live from earth)
26. Crazy world like this (1984-Tropico)
27. Painted desert (1984-Tropico)
28. We belong (1984-Tropico)
29. Invincible (1985-Seven the hard way)
30. Sex as a weapon (1985-Seven the hard way)
31. Walking in the underground (1985-Seven the hard way)
32. Fire and ice (1986-Portland bootleg:live)
33. Cerebral man (1988-Wide awake in dreamland)
34. Hell is for children (1988-Philadelphia bootleg:live)
35. Suffer the little children (1988-Wide awake in dreamland)
36. Evening (1991-True love)
37. True love (1991-True love)
38. You and I (1993-Gravity's rainbow)
39. I don't want be your friend (1997-Innamorata)
40. Shooting star (1999-Synchronistic wanderings best of, Harry Chaplin cover)
41. I won't (2003-Go)
42. Out of the ruins (2003-Go)


Σάββατο, 27 Αυγούστου 2011

Best Uriah Heep ballads by JRD

Those of you who actually care about my selections rather than just downloading anything from everywhere might be asking themselves: ''why a Heep ballad collection?''. Well I'm under the impression that Heep are widely aknowledged for their rocking material and especially fast paced songs like Easy living, Look at yourself etc. If someone were to think of a Heep ballad the first and probably only that would  jump in mind would be July morning. Think harder and then maybe songs like Lady in black or The Wizard will pop up, but then again those are actually not ballads, at least not in the sense of a ''slow'' song. So I thought it would be worth bringing to the attention of folks not aware of the Heep discography some fine songs that fall into the ballad category as above described. These songs are mostly forgotten and it's a shame. Uriah Heep were blessed with outstanding singers, not only the legendary David Byron, but also John Lawton, Peter Goalby and Berny Shaw, they all had their share and contribution more or less. Melody runs deep in the veins of Uriah Heep. Even when mastermind Ken Hensley left the band it managed to resurface with worthy material despite minor success and criticism.  Just take a look at the softer side of this rock legend and you will be surprised by the gems you probably have overlooked.



Τετάρτη, 29 Ιουνίου 2011


I won't be talking blues again anytime soon so please check this one out. Coco Montoya is a fine blues guitarist who learned his licks from Albert Collins in the 70's and later played with John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers. Since the early 90's he's recording as a solo artist and here's a collection of his finest moments.



Τετάρτη, 1 Ιουνίου 2011

Riot- Inishmore (1996)

Most self admiring metalheads agree on the fact that Riot is underrated compared to the music value of their long discography. ''Inishmore'' is the best album of their recent history, the era they were fronted by Mike DiMeo. The music is pretty much power metal but the bluesy voice of DiMeo makes it sound totally different than the Moore fronted albums. Maybe Reale himself was focusing more on some Rainbow influences at the time. Fact is the whole album is icredible, with outstanding choruses and Reale delivering some of his finest licks. DiMeo fits the style perfectly, his raspy tone emotion are allover the songs. No standout tracks because they all are simply great!



Κυριακή, 22 Μαΐου 2011

THYNN ICE- Thynn Ice (1992)

Time for a really obscure slice of quality heavy metal music. Very few is known about this great band from Concord California. Their album, which is supposed to be just a testpressing never officialy released, leaked on the net a couple of years ago, very much to our pleasure. Recently I discovered a blog (http://thynnicerocks.blogspot.com/) about the band so I'll just copy paste a tinny bio:

''Thynn Ice was a band out of Concord California that consisted of Simon Bryant,Paul Rahn,John Darcy,Jim Siler and Dan Oranje. This band is now considered Rare Vintage Hard Rock. Having shared the stage with many Rock legends such as Pat Traverse ,Vinnie Vincent ,Saxon and Y&T .Their heavy hitting sound was influenced by maiden,Priest and the Scorpions each song features guitar solos from both Simon and Dan often battling back and forth.Many shows were played at the Omni in Oakland and at the Stone on broadway in San Francisco. Thynn Ice was a tough act to follow!''

The music speaks for itself, it's a crime no record label took this great band under it's wings. Some tracks are fantastic, the album rivals some of the most highly regarded obscure gems like Hammeron, Lord, Waxwing, Valhalla, Dark Age etc.. This rip misses most part of the last song, so if you are aware of a better one be a nice guy and let me know, I've no chance to make enough money to buy this ultrarare vinyl (now that I think of it I did play some Lotto last week, maybe I do have the money!).


Τρίτη, 17 Μαΐου 2011

VIRGIN STEELE- Noble savage (1985)

Just as its title implies ''Noble Savage'' balances between the nobility of melody and the savageness of power. Virgin Steele can be credited with achieving one of the most unique of sounds during their early days, before becoming a Manowar copy cat (late 90's). Singer, keyboardist and composer David DeFeis is a strong minded and visionary musician and this comes out in the ambitious, bombastic nature of Virgin Steele's music. I don't think many others could pull off such a great album having just kicked out a great guitarist like Jack Starr. Yet ''Noble Savage'' is a statement of its own. Highlights: The same titled track and the magical Angel of light.



There are very few albums I rate as straight 10/10. This is one of them. Not exactly a hidden gem, but maybe some of the newer kids need some enlightment and the older guys some memory refreshment. ''Marching out'' is the second album Malmsteen  released on his own and the fourth of his official discography (counting Steeler, Alcatrazz and the almost instrumental debut ''Rising force''). Besides Yngwie the album features the best Jeff Scott Soto you could possibly get, Jens Johansson on keyboards, Anders Johansson on drums and last but surely not least the late Marcel Jacob on bass. Every simple song is bursting with perfection. The stuff Malmsteen plays here is seminal. He never again sounded so much on the spot, with tight metal riffs and mindblowing but not wankering solos. Soto helps out with absolutely catchy vocal melodies and an out of this earth majestic performance just at age 19! And the songs...having the absolute epic I am a viking, the passionate Don't let it end and the melodic metal anthem I'll see the light tonight on just one album is more than enough but don't overlook the rest. Caught in the middle or Anguish and fear are great melodic headbangers and don't shy away from the most prominent songs of the album. If only Yngwie listened more to this album...



Δευτέρα, 9 Μαΐου 2011

ANGEL- Angel (1975)

One of the fundamental albums of pomp rock. Everything we love about pomp rock found it's way to the debut of this controversial band. The band was discovered by Gene Simmons of KISS and signed to their label, but never managed to take off into the mainstream. Critics and idiots like Frank Zappa loved to hate them, but I bet my house and my wife (ok the second doesn't really matter) that you won't find even one song in the whole Zappa discography that could rival the brilliance of The tower, Long time or Mariner, the three songs that make up the legend of this album. The tower is one of the most epic songs written in the 70's, Long time takes lyricism into a whole new level and along with the ballad Mariner they display the vocal talents of Frank Dimino. There's pure magic in the musicianship these guys reach. That magic lasted for another album and then the band went for a more commercial sound with less demanding wongs. Keyboardist Gregg Giuffria would later on release a couple of albums with his own band Giuffria, featuring David Glen Eisley (lead vocals), Craig Goldy (guitar) and Chuck Wright (bass) and another 4 albums with House of Lords with James Christian on vocals. The other members of Angel did nothing special, at least nothing I'm aware of. I'd surely love to hear more stuff from Frank Dimino. Anyway....



Σάββατο, 7 Μαΐου 2011

WHITE SISTER- White sister (1984)

White Sister released their debut in 1984 with the help of ex-Angel and future House of Lords keyboardist Gregg Giuffria who discovered and produced them. With such a great debut the future looked bright fro White Sister. Massive guitars, fine keys, two great lead singers and a songwriting power able to produce gems like Can't say no should be enough for success. Still White Sister didn't make it. They released a follow up in 1986, then changed name to Tattoo Rodeo for another two albums in a blues/sleaze hard rock style and finally called it quits in the middle 90's. Recently they reunited for some shows (you can check some videos from the Firefest festival on youtube). I'd love to hear more stuff from this outstanding outfit.



Παρασκευή, 29 Απριλίου 2011

LONELY ROAD fanzine issue No2

Second issue of the Lonely Road fanzine, in the same style as the first, with more pages and a big ''Best of 2010'' article with more than 40 reviews and 100 recommendations. There are also some very interesting interviews and articles (you can read about Abarax and Mystery who have been posted on my blog, among others).
The fanzine can be downloaded in pdf format and this time it comes in a smaller, convenient filesize (6mb). As with the first one we are all invited not only to download and read, but also distribute the link wherever we think right.


DRIVE- Characters in time (1988)

A great US metal band that went under the radar like many others. This is not some obscure stuff meant to please only a small minority of 80's US metal enthousiasts. It's an album that would will convince anyone into quality heavy metal music. David Taylor (R.I.P.) delivered amazing vocals and the band played some really inspired and powerful metal music, in the vein of the best US bands (Lethal, Oliver Magnum). Eric Singer plays session drums on the album according to Metal Archives. A second album was released in 1992, slightly different in style but also great.


Πέμπτη, 7 Απριλίου 2011

HIBRIA- Defying the rules (2004)

Brazil is a significant market for heavy metal, but very few local bands have reached out to the rest of the world. The only really successful band I can think of is Sepultura, while Angra and Angra related bands have made some shy steps too. Still Brazil is home to a vivid heavy metal scene and Brazilians seem to love power metal. Hibria deliver amazing, over the top speed power metal with influences both from US and European metal. All of the musicians are extremely accomplished and solos are out of the earth, especially the bass player is jaw dropping and the vocals reach to the sky. Can’t think of a better way for the band to storm into the metal scene.



Τρίτη, 15 Μαρτίου 2011

MYSTERY- Theater of the mind (1996)

One of my latest discoveries, thanks to a friend who pointed out their 2010 album ''One among the living", one of last year's highlights. Mystery come from Canada and they have released four albums. This one is their second and it combines the melody and musicianship of AOR with the quality and introspection of progressive rock. The album is full of lyrical melodies and passionate vocals and also very ear-friendly. If you like ''Theater of the mind'' support their latest release, this band is all about the love of music and they release their albums through their own record company.