Where Are You? Vinnie Vincent

I just got through watching the video for ‘Love Kills’ by the Vinnie Vincent Invasion on VH-1 Classic, that is a damn good song!

I am one of those KISS fans that appreciate Vinnie Vincent. I take a lot of crap for that because many KISS fans believe the propaganda from Mr. Simmons and Mr. Stanley that Vinnie was a greedy egomaniac. While the truth will never truly be told about what went on behind the scenes in KISS with him on lead guitar, I maintain that Vinnie Vincent was vital to KISS’ resurgence in the early ’80s.

The guy can write good songs, bottom line. Take a look at the credits for Creatures Of The Night and Lick It Up, Vinnie co-wrote on some of the best songs on each album. Vinnie also shreds with the best of them. I don’t prefer the “frenzied finger attack” that shredders use but Vinnie Vincent was able to play ballsy and simple as much as he played over-the-top. The guy comes up with some truly unique leads and solos. Take a listen to the first Vinnie Vincent Invasion album to see what I mean. The follow-up, All Systems Go, is even better, one of the most underrated albums from the late ’80s.

So where is he? Where is Vinnie Vincent?

I have no idea, he has been out of the spotlight since 1989. Vinnie did show up briefly when he sued Gene and Paul for unpaid KISS royalties and he was also in the news when his wife was reported missing and, unfortunately, found murdered. On a more positive note, Vinnie did co-write a few songs with Gene Simmons on KISS’ 1992 comeback album, Revenge. (NOTE: If Vinnie is such a band pariah, why did Gene & Paul bring the guy in to write for a new KISS album, one that showcased a stronger and harder KISS).

If anyone has any further info, I’d appreciate it. In the meantime, head to the Pyromessiah website and check it out.

Beyond Fear (featuring Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens) – s/t (2006)

Beyond Fear

Beyond Fear – s/t (2006, SPV)

  1. Scream Machine
  2. And… You Will Die
  3. Save Me
  4. The Human Race
  5. Coming At You
  6. Dreams Come True
  7. Telling Lies
  8. I Don’t Need This
  9. Words Of Wisdom
  10. My Last Words
  11. Your Time Has Come
  12. The Faith

Total Time – 47:21

Band Lineup:
Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens – vocals
Dennis Hayes – Bass
Dwayne Bihary – Rhythm Guitar
Eric Elkins – Drums
John Comprix – Rhythm & Lead Guitar

Tim Owens’ official website

Tim Owens is a premier Metal vocalist. I have all of his albums to date from Winters Bane to Judas Priest to Iced Earth to now. The man’s voice is excellent on record and I’ve witnessed him live fronting the mighty Judas Priest, superb performances every time. At times, Owens is a dead ringer for Priest mainman Rob Halford but then there are the performances when Owens sheds his Halford stylings and crosses them with his own blend of aggression and power. He can sing, bottom line.

Beyond Fear is The Ripper’s best work to date. Take Winters Bane out of the equation and he has been saddled with mediocre songwriting (see Demolition, The Glorious Burden) and the unfortunate task of following premier frontmen (Rob Halford, Matt Barlow). Beyond Fear is Owens’ band, not someone else’s, for once he is not in someone’s shadow. All songs are wriitten by Tim Owens, half in collaboration with guitarist John Comprix. Each song is heavy and well-written, better than anything on Demolition or The Glorious Burden. The band pummels you track by track with basic in-your-face Heavy Metal. It’s straight forward and it works, proving that good bands don’t need to be over dramatic and epic to compete in today’s Metal market.

Favorite tracks on this disc: Scream Machine, Save Me, Dreams Come True

Seriously, every song on this debut is very good. I’ve lived with this album since early May when it was released, I’ve listened to it almost every day and I haven’t grown tired of it. I admit to being skeptical because of the last couple of albums that Tim sang on: the writing was bad and he wasn’t truly part of the process. With his hands firmly entrenched in this new project, Tim Owens has brought some thing fresh to the current Metal scene while retaining a classic feel. I can’t wait for album #2.