Archive for May, 2006

Lawrence Archer – LA (1986) CD goes for $777.77

This is a rare CD, no question. Very big in collector’s circles. The last time this Laurence Archer disc was offered on Ebay was about a year ago. At that time, it fetched $1000 USD with a BUY IT NOW. Seems the market is down right now!

Hurricane – Take What You Want (1985) CD tops at $154!

I’m going to gloat…..I just acquired this CD for $1 thru a trade on LaLa. There are 2 versions of this disc: the U.S. version pictured here and the Japanese with 3 bonus tracks. Usually the Japanese release goes higher.

Maybe this winner should have waited?

Same CD 2 days later
Japanese version at a bargain 6 days later

Career Review: Buckcherry

Posted: May 15, 2006 in Career Reviews

Buckcherry – s/t (1999)

1. Lit Up
2. Crushed
3. Dead Again
4. Check Your Head
5. Dirty Mind
6. For The Movies
7. Lawless And LuLu
8. Related
9. Borderline
10. Get Back
11. Baby
12. Drink The Water

Buckcherry was a band I started to hear serious buzz about back in early 1998 when I first connected to the Internet. When their debut album dropped in early 1999, I picked it up right away and was blown apart. Lead single Lit Up got major airplay in the RI/MA market. This debut turned into one of my favorite albums and an instant classic.

Add Guns’n Roses, Aerosmith, and AC/DC and that’s the Buckcherry sound. We’re talking basic guitar driven Hard Rock: chunky riffs, actual guitar solos, lyrics about sex/drugs/alcohol/rockin’, and melody. I swear I thought this band would be the next GNR, the next band to make that landmark album, setting the industry ablaze. It was a raw, street type sound: chugging guitars and a raspy/screaming vocal with a sense of groove and punch. Even though the debut went Gold, and the band toured relentlessly, they didn’t set the industry ablaze like Guns did.

A solid album, my fave tracks here are Lit Up, rock chugger Dead Again, the ballad For The Movies, and Lawless And Lulu.

Buckcherry – Time Bomb (2001)

1. Frontside
2. Ridin’
3. Time Bomb
4. Porno Star
5. Place In The Sun
6. (Segue) Helpless
7. Underneath
8. Slit My Wrists
9. Whiskey In The Morning
10. You
11. Slammin’
12. Fall

Another solid album! Buckcherry’s sophomore effort keeps to the same formula as the debut: sex, drugs, and Rock’n’Roll with heavy guitar, melody, and gutter vocals. Lead single Ridin’ is a clone of the previous lead single, Lit Up, but it still does what a good song should do: keep the listener listening! Strong songs all around: opening rocker Frontside, Ridin’, and Porno Star are all highlights for me.

Ridin’ got radio airplay and MTV put the video in heavy rotation. (The video was crap. A car with a bunch of hot chicks is fine, but the dance singer Josh Todd was doing was comical. Buckcherry and dancing don’t mix, Buckcherry and kick ass partying does!) I saw these guys open for AC/DC on the STIFF UPPER LIP tour in Boston, MA…..the band was smoking! Unfortunately, despite the good press, MTV, and AC/DC, Time Bomb struggled to get to 250,000 copies sold. I guess you could say it bombed!

Buckcherry got dropped by their label, Dreamworks. Internal problems caused the band to split. Singer Josh Todd released a solo album, You Made Me, in January 2004.

Buckcherry – 15 (2006)

1. So Far
2. Next To You
3. Out Of Line
4. Everything
5. Carousel
6. Sorry
7. Crazy Bitch
8. Onset
9. Sunshine
10. Brooklyn
11. Broken Glass

It’s 5 years after the Time Bomb album and Buckcherry slams down another slab of pure Hard Rock with 15. The formula hasn’t changed and neither has the songwriting. Some would consider it boring and it’s almost a death knell for an album to contain songs about partying and sex but I find it refreshing in today’s watered down safe Rock radio.

Lead single this time around is Crazy Bitch and is getting radio play here in New England like the previous lead singles. It’s got a catchy lyric and a groove that you remember. Other faves so far are the lead track So Far, Everything, Crazy Bitch, and Carousel.

This album was released on a small label, Eleven Seven Music, but the band was recently picked up by Atlantic in partnership with Eleven Seven.

For more info on Buckcherry, head over to their official website.

Mother’s Day Metal

Posted: May 14, 2006 in Now Playing

Happy Mother’s Day to any and all mom’s that come to the Vicious blog. You all deserve much more than just one day.

My mom is working.
My grandmother refuses to leave the house.
My mother-in-law wants to read a book.
My sister won’t answer her phone.
And my wife ate a Chinese food feast and left me with the kids.

So while one watches SpongeBob and the other is watching a DVD, I can Rock out!

Here is the official Mother’s Day Metal playlist:

1. AC/DC – For Those About To Rock (1981)
Always overlooked due to Back In Black’s success. Aside from the title track, my favorite here is Inject The Venom.

2. Angel Witch – 2000: Live at the LA2 (2000)
A live album on Zoom Club Records, usually means an official bootleg! This is the oldest album in the growing pile of discs on my desk (that means it was the bottom one!). 12 songs recorded live at London’s LA2 in 2000 and a 3 song video disc as a bonus. Haven’t gotten to the video but the audio CD is definitely subpar.

3. Buckcherry – 15 (2006)
New album by a reunited Buckcherry. In 1999, I thought they were the next Guns’n Roses, I was wrong. The debut is excellent, not a bad song on the album. They released Time Bomb in 2001 and toured with AC/DC. Of course then they broke up. The new disc, 15, is another strong album. They aren’t reinventing the Hard Rock wheel but they write good songs and have use the sexual themes a la 1986. Good stuff.

4. Evergrey – Monday Morning Apocalypse (2006)
I still haven’t really absorbed this one yet. I really want to like Evergrey, I read amazing reviews on them but I just can’t seem to get into them.

5. Iron Maiden – Live After Death (1985)
Because Metal Mark had IRON MAIDEN WEEK last week, I can’t get enough of Live After Death. One of my favorite live albums and one of the most important releases of my younger years. I defy anyone to find a dead track in that setlist for the Powerslave Tour. What a solid show!

6. Scorpions – World Wide Live (1985)
Another live classic and essential album from my youth.

- Reminder that VH-1 is debuting the Ratt – Behind The Music tonight (Thurs 5/11 9pm Eastern) followed by the Pantera – BTM at 10pm.

- Lacuna Coil played a couple of tunes on Jimmy Kimmel Live a couple of days ago. I lost the exact link but if you head to YouTube.com and search it, you’ll see it. It’s a good performance and I’m glad to see Lacuna Coil get some national publicity.

- If anyone can translate French, or knows somewhere on the Net that will, this is an interesting blog on ’80s Metal out of France.

- Remember Circus, Hit Parader, Kerrang!, and Rip? How about Metal Dreams, Metal Mania, New Heavy Metal Revue and Metal Forces? All good mags/zines from the good ol’ days. I started acquiring some old issues of Metal Forces recently and I’m fascinated by the ads. I think of all the music I miss now, and all the music I missed then, and I really wish I could win Powerball, LOL!

- Anyone pick up Beyond Fear featuring Tim “Ripper” Owens?
It came out Tuesday but I haven’t bothered yet.

- Speaking of purchases…..I ordered from AOR Heaven Tuesday instead of leaving the house. I ordered Gotthard – Lipservice and the new reissue for Mama’s Boys – Power And Passion. I’ve been meaning to check out Gotthard for some time now and I’ve been after an original issue of the Mama’s Boys disc but it tops out around $100+ every time it pops up on Ebay. I’ll take the reissue for $16…..

- As a Rhode Islander, and a former patron of The Station, I watched the sentencing of Dan Biechele, former tour mgr. of Great White, live. He got 15 yrs, 11 suspended, so he’ll serve 4 at the ACI, for his role in The Station Nightclub fire. He then gets 10 yrs probation when he gets out. Is it enough? Should he have gotten more? I’m not sure but I’m disgusted that the other defendants (Jeff & Mike Dederian, the owners) have not been held accountable yet. I also think the local officials who inspected The Station, and let it pass, should also be held accountable. No matter what we do, what punishments are given, and what money is raised…..people lost their lives, people were seriously injured mentally and physically, and we should never forget.

Blackmore’s Night – The Village Lanterne (2006)

1. 25 Years
2. Village Lanterne
3. I Guess It Doesn’t Matter Anymore
4. The Messenger (instrumental)
5. World Of Stone
6. Faerie Queen – Faerie Dance
7. St. Teresa
8. Village Dance (instrumental)
9. Mond Tanz / Child In Time
10. Streets Of London
11. Just Call My Name (I’ll Be There)
12. Olde Mill Inn
13. Windmills
14. Street Of Dreams (Candice Night vocal)

Bonus tracks:
15. Call It Love
16. Street Of Dreams (featuring Joe Lynn Turner)
17. All Because Of You (Radio Edit)

Blackmore’s Night official website

Here is the post from early April where I said I wouldn’t buy this album:
Blackmore’s Night also released a new one but I’m done with the Medieval music. I have the 1st 3, they’re good for a change of pace but I would rather Ritchie do some ROCK music. (Vicious Steve – 4/4/06)

I caved at the $9.99 price tag, the online reviews saying that Mr. Blackmore had found his Strat, the remake of ‘Street Of Dreams’ with Joe Lynn Turner, and the rumors of a possible Rainbow reunion with Blackmore/Turner. Why don’t I listen to my gut feeling? I usually do but all the factors pushed common sense aside.

Continuing in the tradition of Blackmore’s Night albums, The Village Lanterne is Renaissance music, peppered with some electric guitar, and Candice Night’s vocal stylings. If you’ve heard the first few offerings from Blackmore’s Night, then you’ve heard this all before. I’ll describe the music as – interesting, different, grandiose, intricate, beautiful, cheerful, and boring – depending on how much you enjoy these types of medieval offerings.

There are some bright spots:
The playing is flawless. Ritchie is a master of guitar. Anton Figg is a great drummer. Candice Night has a good singing voice. The strings, keyboards, violin are all extremely well done.

I Guess It Doesn’t Matter Anymore has an upbeat tempo and plenty of Ritchie’s electric guitar. The Messenger is a fine acoustic instrumental by the Minstrel Blackmore. The re-working of Joan Osborne’s St. Teresa is another electric guitar showcase with wonderfully layered keyboards. Just Call My Name has a great Blackmore solo at the end.

There are the 2 versions of the Rainbow classic, Street Of Dreams – the Candice Night version and then the duet with Joe Lynn Turner. The song is Renaissanced up in both versions and Candice’s vocal is good but I just don’t like it. It’s good to hear Joe but he’s a bit laid back on this version…..we all know Joe can still belt this tune out! Good solo by Ritchie.

Mond Tanz/Child In Time is just plain bad and All Because Of You gives off a “dance remix” vibe…..again, bad. The rest of the songs just aren’t memorable, they sound like the rest of the lot from previous albums but not as “medieval”. It’s as if the music is starting to become redundant and maybe a change of direction is in the air? Let’s hope so!

Bottom line: Avoid and hope for a Rainbow reunion with Turner, unless you really, really, really, really like previous Blackmore’s Night albums.

Top 5 lists

Posted: May 8, 2006 in Metal News & Commentary

Top 5 bands
KISS
Judas Priest
Saxon
Queen
UFO

Top 5 Albums
KISS – Rock’n’Roll Over
KISS – Creatures Of The Night
Judas Priest – Defenders Of The faith
Queen – A Night At The Opera
MSG – Assault Attack

Top 5 Live Albums
KISS – Alive 2
Iron Maiden – Live After Death
Scorpions – World Wide Live
UFO – Strangers In The Night
Royal Hunt – Live Japan 1996

Top 5 Album Covers
KISS – Rock’n’Roll Over
Judas Priest – Defenders Of The Faith
Iron Maiden – Piece Of Mind
KISS – Creatures Of The Night
Van Halen – 1984

Top 5 Concerts
KISS – Reunion Tour 1996 (Fleet Center – Boston, MA – 1st night)
Saxon – Metalhead Tour 10/31/99 w/U.D.O. (The Station – West Warwick, RI)
Aerosmith – Done With Mirrors Tour 1986 w/Ted Nugent (Providence Civic Center – Providence, RI – 1st concert ever)
KISS – Crazy Night Tour 1987 w/Ted Nugent (Prov. Civic Center – Prov.,RI – 1st KISS show)
UFO – You Are Here Tour 2004 w/Blue Oyster Cult (Hampton Beach Casino, NH)

I emailed Patrice at Christine16.net to let everyone involved with the project know that I reviewed the CD and it got picked up by KISSonline.com. Here’s Patrice’s response:
—————————————————

Hi Steve! Was I aware? Jebus! The number of visitors to our site sky rocketed since friday night… I was like: “”WTF””… Checked my logs and saw that V&D and the Kissonline were bringing TONS of visitors… 2000 unique visitors in about 48 hours… I spent the week-end updating the site, which I didn’t have the time before… A HUGE thank you for the very nice review and for plugging our CD at both places (it’s also at kissasylum)… It sure was nice of you… The kids are beside themselves…

Sure glad you like the CD…

Thx again…

Patrice
—————————————————-

The CD is sold out but I’m hoping Patrice will do a second pressing if there is enough demand. Last update was that the next tribute would be a Metallica tribute, that would be interesting.

Congratulations to Patrice and all the kids involved on a spectacular effort.

Lana Lane – Storybook: Tales from Europe and Japan (2004)

1. Intro Medley (Japan 2002)
a. Dark Water Part III
b. Fanfare for the Dragon Isle
c. Garden Of The Moon
d. In The Hall Of The Ocean Queen
2. Escher’s Staircase (Japan 2002)
3. Rainbow’s End (Japan 1999)
4. Project Shangri-La (Germany 2003)
5. Queen Of The Ocean (Japan 2002)
6. Destination Roswell (Belgium 2003)
7. Frankenstein Unbound (Japan 2002)
8. Before You Go (Germany 2003)
9. Under The Olive Tree (Japan 1998)
10. The Beast Within You (Japan 2002)
11. Night Falls (Japan 1999)
12. Through The Rain (Germany 2003)
13. Season (Japan 1998)
14. Love Is An Illusion (Japan 1998)
15. Avalon (Germany 1997)
16. Evolution Revolution (Japan 1999)
17. Symphony Of Angels (Japan 1998)
18. Astrology Prelude (Germany 2003)
19. Redemption Part II (Germany 2003)
20. Secrets Of Astrology (Japan 2002)

Bonus Material:
In studio interviews with the musicians
Candid montage 1998-2003
Multiple playlists
5.1 surround mixes

Duration: 3 hrs & 2 mins

Lana Lane official website
Think Tank Media

Storybook is a collection of concert footage from Lana Lane’s tours of Europe and Japan since 1998. It’s a good collection of songs from different performances giving the viewer a great variety of material, an overview of Lana Lane’s music thus far. Some footage is perfect, some less then perfect. Some stages are bigger than others, some audiences are wilder than others. The performances are TOP-NOTCH! The true highlight of the DVD is the band playing the songs with absolute perfection.

The unique thing about this DVD is the multiple playlists:
- all performances
- all interviews
- single clip
- single interview
or
- all performances with each interview for each song

The last option is the best option and the longest. I really like hearing the musicians’ commentary on how they created the song, or how the performance was, etc. before the live footage plays. It gives a little insight into the inner workings of the band. This isn’t Gene and Paul giving us tired old KISS cliches, these are interviews with Lana Lane, Erik Norlander, Mark McCrite, Vinny Appice, and the others going in depth into the songwriting process and/or the live aspects of the show.

Well worth your $20.

A few days ago, I received an email from Keith Leroux from KISSonline.com. He was going to do a piece on the Christine Sixteen Tribute disc but asked if he could use my quick review and credit the V/D blog.

So here’s the link at KISSonline.com

Check this auction out

A bargain bin special!

I am going to the local shops, buying these for 5 bucks each and contacting the 2nd highest bidder who bid $1149 and lost.

Notice the last 2 bidders were NEW users. Shill bidders!

Rolling Stones Steel Wheels promo CD auction

This has to be the most ridiculous thing I’ve seen. This is a 2-track promo from 1989, radio stations in my area sell these type of things at a buck a piece for charity. Granted, if I find one, it’s up for auction!

A fool and his money are soon parted……..

Paul Stanley has more than a new album coming out, he has paintings! He’s in good company with Paul McCartney, Ron Wood, David Bowie, Ringo, and John Lennon all featured. Not bad either, check these out…..

You have to call to get pricing info, can you say EXPENSIVE?!

Check out the Paul Stanley Collection here.