Scorpions – Blackout (1982)

Scorpions - Blackout (1982)

Scorpions – Blackout (1982, Mercury/Polygram)

  1. Blackout
  2. Can’t Live Without You
  3. No One Like You
  4. You Give Me All I Need
  5. Now!
  6. Dynamite
  7. Arizona
  8. China White
  9. When The Smoke Is Going Down

Band Lineup:
Klaus Meine – Vocals
Rudolf Schenker – Guitars
Matthias Jabs – Guitars
Francis Buchholz – Bass
Herman Rarebell – Drums

Producer: Dieter Dierks

Total Time – 36:44

Scorpions official website

Back in 1982, I remember watching MTV and this video came on that was set in Alcatraz Prison and had a crazy guy with forks on his eyes…..’No One Like You’ was my first introduction to the Scorpions and I was hooked. Add the original album art in and the 10 year old I was bought it right away!

The album starts off with the high powered title track that is catchy and heavy at the same time. This is song is a perfect example of the potent twin guitar attack the Scorpions do so well, Schenker and Jabs maintaining the main riff and weaving in potent licks and solos. ‘Blackout’ is a driving song that retains it’s melody and remains heavy.

‘Can’t Live Without You’ follows the title track and continues the melodic heaviness with a sing-a-long chorus that is a concert staple to this day. Again, the main riff is so solid and chugs right along allowing another guitar layer over the top. Best solos on the album featured here.

‘No One Like You’ was the band’s breakthrough in the U.S. and sent many of us young MTV generation addicts straight to the record store. Combining a Pop sensibility and melodic hooks, this song was clearly the big hit it was to become. Very simple lyrically but it is delivered with an intensity by Klaus Meine that makes the song sound bigger.

‘You Give Me All I Need’ slows down to a mid-pace, almost ballad like, tempo until the main riff from the intro kicks into the chorus. I look at this song as the bridge between the 1970s Scorpions ballads and the ones to follow from 1984 on. It comes off as hard, catchy Pop but still retains a grit from the band’s early years before Matthias Jabs took over guitar duties in 1979. The chorus is extremely basic, just repeating the title over and over, but Klaus’ performance is solid as he shows he can go to a slow pace and kick it into high power right away. Hard to believe he had surgery on his vocal chords prior to this album’s recording.

To this day I’ve never liked ‘Now!’. It’s a very fast song with some blistering solos but it just sounds too busy, too frantic. I think it’s heavy and fast just to be heavy and fast, not much melody as on the first four tracks. Can anyone tell what Klaus is singing on the first listen? I sure couldn’t then and I still have a hard time today, the pace and the accent make it a jumble. Thank goodness for lyrics in the liner notes!

The heaviness continues with ‘Dynamite’, one of the most underrated songs on the record. Solid guitars and a pounding drum sound drive this song with speed and precision. The frenetic pace is equalled by Mr. Meine but he is clearer in delivery than previously on ‘Now!’. Another concert favorite.

The Scorpions hail from Germany but ‘Arizona’ retains a NWOBHM meets L.A. Glam sound. It’s slower than the previous two tracks but not mid-paced, it’s more of a Hard Rock groove a la the mid-’80s. It’s similar to the future hit smash, ‘Rock You Like A Hurricane’ (from LOVE AT FIRST STING), as far as pace and structure but ‘Arizona’ seems to be less aggressive and more akin to ’70s flavored Hard Rock. Another gem of a song that gets overlooked because the big guns are the first three songs on the album.

Slow and brooding, ‘China White’ sounds like a heavy riff machine until the guitars cut out for Meine to sing some lines and then they kick back in. There’s a dark aura to this track, a little doom-ish and rooted in ’70s proto-Metal and Progressive. Sounds like the band circa the mid-’70s with Uli Jon Roth. The solos are slowed down but filled with power and attitude.

Ballad time! Combine early Scorpions with a preview of ballads to come and you get ‘When The Smoke Is Going Down’. This song didn’t really do it for me back in ’82, especially at the end of the album. You have heavy tunes all over this platter and you end it with a ballad? I would have put it somewhere in the middle. It’s not a bad tune but the future would prove that the Scorpions would master the ballad and leave this in the dust.

Bottom Line:
A classic album that I reach for more than any other Scorpions offering. Four of the nine songs still make it into the live set today and they are also the strongest on the record: ‘Blackout’, ‘Can’t Live Without You’, ‘No One Like You’ and ‘Dynamite’…..these are also my favorite tunes. The last great Scorpions album BEFORE they became radio/MTV darlings and the master of the power ballad. A true Metal classic!

Scorpions Playlist – 9/16/07

With the release of HUMANITY HOUR 1 (2007) in North America a couple of weeks ago, I’ve been on a major Scorpions binge. I don’t have every single Scorpions album but I have most. Here’s the albums I’ve been spinning:

  • Tokyo Tapes (1978) - One of the best live albums that no one ever mentions. If you want to hear early Scorpions, this is the album to put on.
  • Blackout (1982) – My first introduction to the band with the early MTV video for ‘No One Like You’ but my favorite here is ‘Can’t Live Without You’.
  • Savage Amusement (1988) – This is the “lost” Scorpions album. It’s sandwiched between the two blockbusters LOVE AT FIRST STING (1984) and CRAZY WORLD (1990). No one ever talks about this record.
  • Crazy World (1990) – There is more to this album than ‘Wind Of Change’. The better ballad is ‘Send Me An Angel’ and there are some underrated rockers.
  • Eye II Eye (1999) – The most controversial album by the band due to the change in sound and image. The songs were better live and the album is a grower.
  • Humanity Hour 1 (2007) – This is a Top 10 of 2007 selection, a solid album that I am really enjoying.

Shuffle Mode – Scorpions Edition – 9/16/07

Tale Of The Tape:
Dell DJ 30 (1st gen)
3584 songs (301 full albums)

Scorpions albums – 16

In the spirit of Scorpions Week, here are the first 20 songs in Shuffle Mode (song-album-year):

  1. ‘Can You Feel It’ – Unbreakable (2004)
  2. ‘Bad Boys Running Wild’ – Love At First Sting (1984)
  3. ‘Are You The One?’ – Pure Instinct (1996)
  4. ‘The Zoo’ – Acoustica (2001)
  5. ‘Catch Your Train’ – Acoustica (2001)
  6. ‘The Zoo’ – World Wide Live (1985)
  7. ‘Yellow Butterfly’ – Eye II Eye (1999)
  8. ‘Time Will Call Your Name’ – Pure Instinct (1996)
  9. ‘Big City Nights’ – Love At First Sting (1984)
  10. ‘This Time’ – Unbreakable (2004)
  11. ‘Aleyah’ – Eye II Eye (1999)
  12. ‘Mysterious’ – Eye II Eye (1999)
  13. ‘Your Last Song’ – Humanity Hour 1 (2007)
  14. ‘In Search Of The Peace Of Mind’ – Lonesome Crow (1972)
  15. ‘Wind Of Change’ – Crazy World (1990)
  16. ‘We Let It Rock…..You Let It Roll’ – Savage Amusement (1988)
  17. ‘321’ – Humanity Hour 1 (2007)
  18. ‘China White’ – Blackout (1982)
  19. ‘Nightmare Avenue’ – Face The Heat (1993)
  20. ‘In Trance’ – Tokyo Tapes (1978)

Bonus Track: ‘Arizona’ – Blackout (1982)

Scorpions Week

This week is all about the Scorpions.

Scorpions lineup 2007

Sunday — a special Scorpions Shuffle Mode and Scorpions Current Playlist

Monday BLACKOUT (1982) album review and Videos from the album

TuesdayScorpions WANTED!

WednesdayEYE II EYE (1999) album review and Videos from the album

ThursdayA SAVAGE CRAZY WORLD (2002) DVD review

FridayHUMANITY HOUR 1 (2007) album review and Videos from the album

SaturdayMy thoughts on the Scorpions

Locofest 2007: Heaven & Hell, Alice Cooper, & Queensryche in concert at the Tweeter Center – 9/9/07

I wasn’t going to go to this show because of the high ticket prices and fees but the free tickets I got from Live Nation made the decision easier. My buddy and I went to the Tweeter Center in Mansfield, MA around 6pm knowing that Queensryche would take the stage around 7pm, as most three band lineups usually start.

Let me explain the Locofest:

107.3 WAAF in Boston, MA is the best FM radio station in Massachusetts that plays Hard Rock and Heavy Metal. They play the more popular bands like Godsmack, Shadows Fall, System Of A Down, etc. but at least they are playing this form of music. Every year for the last 16 years, they have put on a festival featuring national, international, and local bands…..very similar to the Ozzfest. This festival started at 1pm, had 5 stages, and 50 bands (including the 3 headliners). Looking over the lineup, there were some familiar names on the smaller stages: Meliah Rage, Godhead, Waltham, Shadows Fall, Leaving Eden, Bang Camaro. The problem was that most bands only got 20 minutes onstage and many of the bands crossed into each other’s times…..bands like Bang Camaro and Roadsteamer were playing during the Queensryche and Alice Cooper sets! This makes for a hectic day and my buddy was only there to see Alice so I didn’t bother with the other stages.

The parking situation is usually a pain for big shows but we were able to park really close to the arena…..a bad omen! Walked in no problem and noticed that half the souveneir and concession stands were closed…..bad omen #2! We went to the main area to get onto the grass lawn and the entire lawn area (seats and grass) is non-accessible…..bad omen #3! No ushers were present except for the lower area under the roof, seems that they didn’t sell enough reserved seating and everyone with a $90 reserved ticket was moved down to the first 15 rows. The majority of the crowd was Lawn seats and they were all moved under the roof as general admission seating. This was good because the forecast had rain coming and my friend and I were able to get really good seats.

Queesryche took the stage at 6:30pm and played until 7pm.

  1. The Whisper
  2. Damaged
  3. Speak
  4. I’m American
  5. NM 156
  6. Screaming In Digital
  7. Empire
  8. Welcome To The Machine (Pink Floyd cover)
  9. Take Hold Of The Flame

As usual, the band played great and their Pink Floyd cover really won the crowd over. For an opener, Queensryche had a packed house under the roof.

Alice Cooper took the stage around 7:20pm and brought as many special effects he could fit into his 70 minute time slot.

  1. It’s Hot Tonight
  2. No More Mr Nice Guy
  3. Under My Wheels
  4. I’m Eighteen
  5. Is It My Body?
  6. Billion Dollar Babies
  7. Halo Of Flies (incl. Drum Solo by Eric Singer)
  8. Welcome To My Nightmare
  9. Only Women Bleed
  10. Steven
  11. Dead Babies
  12. Medley: Devils Food – Killer – I Love The Dead
  13. School’s Out
  14. Poison
  15. Elected

Alice Cooper always puts on a great show, true Hard Rock theatre at it’s finest. He had all the props, staging, and effects. Usually he uses the guillotine but he’s hanging himself this tour so that was a nice surprise. The seats under the pavilion were the most crowded during Alice’s performance and he didn’t disappoint anyone and may have actually stole the show! Surprise of the set was opening with ‘It’s Hot Tonight’, a really great deep track off LACE & WHISKEY (1977). What really made the performance for me was the family of five sitting in front of us. Mom & Dad brought their kids with them, all around 8-10 yrs old. These kids knew all the songs word for word and I had a good time singing right along with them…..literally. They were right in front of me and the four of us belted out ‘Only Women Bleed’, ‘Dead Babies’, etc. and high-fived all night. Always great to see young kids enjoying REAL music.

Heaven & Hell came on around 9:15 and they inherited the packed house that Alice Cooper generated. As disturbed as I was about the lack of ticket sales for this festival, my reservations had been dashed by Queensryche and Alice Cooper putting on solid performances, I expected no less from Heaven & Hell. I honestly don’t remember the setlist order but I do know the songs:

  • E5150
  • After All (The Dead)
  • Mob Rules
  • Children Of The Sea
  • I
  • The Sign Of The Southern Cross
  • Voodoo
  • drum solo
  • Computer God
  • Falling Off The Edge Of The World
  • Shadow Of The Wind
  • Die Young
  • Heaven And Hell (with guitar solo)
  • Neon Knights

The problem with the Heaven & Hell set wasn’t the performance, it was spectacular like the one I saw in May, it was the crowd. About five songs into the set, people started to leave. As the set went on, more people left. By the time the band got to the last song (‘Neon Knights’), there were a lot of seats empty in the general admission seating. I was disappointed in the crowd leaving and I noticed that the band might have been as well because Ronnie and Tony were talking to each other during ‘Heaven & Hell’ and they may have decided to cut the set short. In fact, two songs were missing from the setlist that have been played at most of the shows: ‘Lady Evil’ and ‘The Devil Cried’. I’m not saying that they cut the set due to a smaller crowd, it could have been due to time constraints. The Tweeter Center has a strict curfew of 11pm, as of the ‘Neon Knights’ encore it was 10:45pm. A lot of time was taken up by ‘Children Of The Sea’, ‘Falling Off The Edge Of The World’, and ‘The Sign Of The Southern Cross’ (my friend timed this one as almost 10 minutes long!)as well. Personally, I didn’t complain about the setlist or the performance, my only complaint was that the band is putting on a great show and people are leaving!

For me, a great time: free seats, awesome bands, and great music. I recommend everyone go see this tour before Heaven & Hell ends their run and Alice Cooper heads to the studio. Also, that Queensryche cover of ‘Welcome To The Machine’ was so good that I am actually interested in buying their new covers album when it’s released, breaking my own rules and distaste for covers albums.

AC/DC – Plug Me In box set tracklisting and artwork

From Bravewords.com

Columbia Records will release Plug Me In – the ultimate career-spanning DVD box set of live performances, interviews and more from AC/DC, the world’s most electrifying rock & roll band – on Tuesday, October 16.

AC/DC - Plug Me In front artwork

The complete tracklisting is as follows:

AC/DC DVD 1 (2 hours 22 mins):

‘High Voltage’ (King Of Pop awards) – October 1975 – 4.02
‘It’s A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘N’ Roll)’ (Bandstand) – 4.41
‘School Days’ (St Albans) – March 1976 – 5.40
‘TNT’ (St Albans) – March 1976 – 4.46
‘Live Wire’ (Rollin Bolan) – July 1976 – 6.12
‘Can I Sit Next To You Girl’ (Rollin Bolan) – July 1976 – 4.14
‘Baby Please Don’t Go’ (Melbourne) – December 1976 – 11.49
‘Hell Aint A Bad Place To Be’ (Sight & Sound) – October 1977 – 5.13
‘Rocker’ (Sight and Sound) – October 1977 – 8.10
‘Rock ‘n Roll Damnation’ (Apollo) – April 1978 – 3.44
‘Dog Eat Dog’ (Apollo Glasgow) – April 1978 – 4.26
‘Let There Be Rock’ (Apollo) – April 1978 – 8.27
‘Problem Child’ (Rock Goes To College) – October 1978 – 4.44
‘Sin City’ (Rock Goes To College) – October 1978 – 5.23
‘Bad Boy Boogie’ (Rock Goes To College) – October1978 – 9.06
‘Highway To Hell’ (Veronika) – July 1979 – 4.12
‘The Jack’ (Veronika) – July 1979 – 5.19
‘Whole Lotta Rosie’ (Veronika) – July 1979 – 5.19

DVD 1 Bonus Footage
Band Interview at Airport 1976 – 2.16
Band Interview at Covent Garden – 2.27
‘Problem Child’ – Melbourne – 3.56
‘Baby Please Don’t Go’ (Germany, incomplete) – 2.10
‘Dirty Deeds’ on Network Sounds – 0.40
Bon Scott Interview – 15.11
‘Rock n’ Roll Damnation’ – TOTP – 2.47
Australian Music to the world i/v in Atlanta – 1.31
Nice Super 8 movie – 3.34

AC/DC DVD 2 (2hours 30 mins):

‘Shot Down In Flames’ (Tokyo) – February 1981 – 3.27
‘What Do You Do For The Money’ – (Tokyo) – February 1981 – 2.38
‘Shook Me All Night’ – February 1981 – 4.55
‘Let There Be Rock’ (Tokyo) – February 1981 – 5.29
‘Back In Black’ (Largo 81) – December 1981 – 3.34
‘TNT’ (Largo 81) – 3.39
‘Shoot To Thrill’ (Houston) – October 1983 – 5.23
‘Guns For Hire’ (Detroit) – November 1983 – 5.24
‘Dirty Deeds’ (Detroit) – November 1983 – 4.12
‘Flick Of The Switch’ (Largo 83) – 3.27
‘Bedlam In Belgium’ (Largo 83) – 3.24
‘Back In Black’/ Doco (USSR) – September 1991 – 2.15
‘Highway To Hell’ (USSR) – September 1991 – 3.36
‘Whole Lotta Rosie’ (USSR) – September 1991 – 4.16
‘For Those About To Rock’ (USSR) – September 1991 – 6.52
‘Gone Shooting’ (VH1 Session) – July 1996 – 6.03
‘Hail Caesar’ (Sydney Screen Mix) – 1996 Tour – 5.43
‘Ballbreaker’ (Sydney Screen Mix) – 1996 Tour – 4.29
‘Rock N Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution’ (Sydney Screen Mix) – Tour 1996 – 6.34
‘Hard As a Rock’ (Stade De France) – June 2001 – 5.02
‘Hells Bells’ (Stade De France) – June 2001 – 5.49
‘Ride On’ (Stade De France) – June 2001 – 6.27
‘Stiff Upper Lip’ (Munich) – June 2003 – 3.54
‘Thunderstruck’ (Munich) – June 2003 – 5.24
‘If You Want Blood’ (Toronto) – July 2003 – 5.35
‘The Jack’ (Toronto) – July 2003 – 9.50
‘You Shook Me All Night’ (Toronto) – July 2003 – 4.27

DVD 2 Bonus Footage
Beavis and Butthead intro to Ballbreaker tour – 1.16
‘Hells Bells’ in Brussells – 3.40
Donnington BBC interview with Angus – 1.03
Warmup for VH1 – 4.20
‘Rock Me Baby’ – jam with THE ROLLING STONES – 6.43

AC/DC DVD 3 (BONUS DVD) (2 hours 7 mins):

‘Girl’s Got Rhythm’ (Australian TV) – 1979 3.30
‘She’s Got Balls’ (St. Albans High School 76) 6.20
‘Long Way To the Top’ (St Albans High School 76) 7.08
‘Let There Be Rock’ (BBC Sight & Sound 77) 5.57
‘Bad Boy Boogie’ (Apollo Glasgow 78) 7.49
‘House Is On Fire (Detroit 83) 3.06
‘Guns For Hire’ (Band rehearsals 84) 3.50
‘Bogey Man’ (Sydney 96) 10.49Girl’s Got Rhythm (Sydney 96) 4.08
‘Highway to Hell’ (Dublin 1996) 7.01
‘Let There Be Rock’ (Stuttgart 2000) 10.55
Angus Statue Intro (Stiff Upper Lip Tour Film 2001) 1.26

AC/DC Live at Houston Summit 83 (Whole Concert segment runs 53 mins):
‘Guns For Hire’ 5.31
‘Shoot To Thrill’ 5.32
‘Sin City’ 5.24
‘House Is On Fire’ 3.58
‘Back In Black’ 4.12
‘Bad Boy Boogie’ 14.33
‘Rock ‘n Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution’ 5.07
‘Flick Of The Switch’ 3.25
‘Hells Bells’ 5.24

You can pre-order the box set at Amazon.com

Tommy Lee quits Motley Crue

From Bravewords.com:

Los Angeles Superior Court Document No. BC372846, dated September 11, 2007, filed by attorneys for Mötley Crüe Inc., Red, White & Crue Inc., Nikki Sixx and Mick Mars reveals that Mötley Crüe had four members: Nikki Sixx, Vince Neil, Mick Mars and Tommy Lee. Lee recently informed Sixx and Mars, the shareholders of MCI, that he was resigning from the band and his resignation was accepted.

This comes as a direct result of the plaintiffs demanding a jury trial to resolve actions brought against the defendants, citing breach of fiduciary duty and constructive fraud. Specifically, Tommy Lee’s manager, Carl Stubner, is accused of orchestrating, devising and implementing a self-serving scheme promoting Lee’s solo activities to the harm and detriment of the band. During the times relevant to this action, band members Lee and Neil were employees and/or agents of MCI.

Additionally, following the Red, White & Crüe album and 2005 tour, Mötley Crüe entered into a deal with Wal Mart. Wal Mart paid Mötley Crüe a $900,000 advance to record a new studio album, of which $300,000 was dispersed to the band and $600,000 kept for the production of the album. The new album was scheduled to be recorded in 2006 for release in 2007. An international tour in support of the new album was also planned. This deal with Wal Mart was designed to generate a new album and result in higher album, ticket and merchandise revenue. It is the band’s first full-length studio album with all-new material in ten years.

Ultimately, because Defendants influenced and persuaded Lee to engage in individual projects and not perform with the band, Mötley Crüe was forced to cancel its Southeast Asia tour in August 2006. Mötley Crüe was also forced to miss numerous dates on the band’s tour with Aerosmith from September through December 2006. As a result, Mötley Crüe lost over $8,000,000 in ticket, merchandise and album sales associated with those tour dates.

Despite continuous requests from other band members to “get Tommy into the studio” to record the new album, Defendants withheld his services. Defendants convinced Lee to refrain from recording the new album as part of their extortive scheme to obtain more money from their other fiduciary, Mötley Crüe. These actions by Defendants have significantly delayed the release of the band’s new album resulting in more than $1,500,000 in lost album sales. Additionally, Mötley Crüe was forced to pay taxes on Wal Mart’s $600,000 album advance because the money was not used for recording the new album.

———————————————–

If you didn’t see this one coming, then you haven’t been paying attention. I’ve been to every Motley Crue tour since GENERATION SWINE (1997) and the writing on the wall has become clearer every tour about Tommy’s involvement. The guy has given 100% at each show but he’s also tried to incorporate his passions for DJing and Hip-Hop into his Crue performances. Tommy’s left once already (replaced by the late Randy Castillo) to pursue his current musical interests…..it wasn’t as successful as he’d hoped. I can’t fault the guy for wanting to do something he enjoys but, when you add in all these legal details, it’s obvious a split needs to happen for Tommy and the band to continue forward.

BTW, isn’t it the Motley Crue/Wal-Mart pairing a little odd? One of the most notorious Hard Rock bands of all time partnered with a retail outlet that prides itself on family values?

— Steve

Led Zeppelin reunion news

From Bravewords:

LED ZEPPELIN will reform for a one-off show at the O2 arena in London it was confirmed today (September 12th).

The band will reunite for the show on November 26th, topping a bill that also includes PETE TOWNSHEND, FOREIGNER and PAULO NUTINI with BILL WYMAN AND THE RHYTHM KINGS backing those three acts as well as playing themselves.

The show is being held to raise money for the Ahmet Ertegun Education Fund, which pays for university scholarships in the UK, US and Turkey.

The fund was created in honour of Atlantic Records founder Ahmet Ertegun who died last year. He worked helped further the career of a host of acts including Led Zeppelin.

“During the Zeppelin years, Ahmet Ertegun was a major foundation of solidarity and accord. For us he was Atlantic Records and remained a close friend and conspirator,” explained Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant of the band’s decision to reform. “This performance stands alone as our tribute to the work and the life of our long standing friend.”

Tickets for the show cost £125 each and they are limited to two per person and will be distributed by ballot only.

Those wishing to go must register on Ahmettribute.com to be in the ballot. Registration closes on Monday (September 17th), while any tickets that appear on online auction sites afterwards will be immediately cancelled.

A big after show for the gig is set to take place on the night at the O2’s Indigo venue.

Led Zeppelin will feature original members Plant, Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones, while Jason Bonham, the son of their late drummer John Bonham, will play with the band.

The band will also release a new best of compilation, Mothership, on November 13th.

Promoter Harvey Goldsmith said at the moment the band “have no plans to tour but hopes they will”. He added they were enjoying working together again and were currently planning a two hour for the gig.

Led Zeppelin’s three original members – singer Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page and bassist John Paul Jones – will be joined by Jason Bonham, son of the late drummer John Bonham.

———————————————————-

The inevitable has happened! This is the only reunion, aside from any Beatles configuration, that everyone has been waiting for. Ever since the Live Aid performance in 1985, fans have been hoping for Led Zep to take the stage.

I’ve never been a huge Zeppelin fan. I know all the songs, I know the band history, but they have never been at the top of my favorites list. I like the band and I’m glad that I will be able to catch a glimpse of Rock history (when they release the DVD that has to be coming) but I really hope they do a one-off and not a full tour. There has always been a mystery to Led Zeppelin, and an anticipation, that only adds to their legacy. I’d hate to see that tarnished.

—- Steve

Remembering 9/11/2001

Just a quick post tonight…..

I would just like to take the time to remember the victims, the families, and the rescue workers that were effected by the tragic events in New York City on 9/11/2001. We should never forget the lives lost and the toll on the rest of the country, if not, the world.

To all of you: stay safe, be good to each other, and live every day to the fullest.

Press Release: Iron Maiden announce the Somewhere Back In Time World Tour 2008

From IronMaiden.com:

IRON MAIDEN announce their most ambitious and extraordinary touring plans ever – and are very pleased to announce that this will include Australia for the first time in 15 years!

Somewhere Back In Time Tour 2008

The Somewhere Back In Time World Tour 2008 will be in three sections, starting in February and March 2008 with the first leg encompassing major concerts in 20 selected cities on five continents in seven weeks including India, Japan, North America, Central and South America, and, of course, Australia, opening in Perth on February 4 and continuing through Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane:

Somewhere Back In Time, Australia 2008

February
4 – Burswood Dome – Perth
6 – Rod Laver Arena – Melbourne
9 – Acer Arena – Sydney
12 – Entertainment Centre – Brisbane

The tour then continues with more concerts in North America in late May and June before finishing with a third leg in July and August encompassing major stadiums and festivals all over Europe. During the tour the band is expected to play to well over one and a half million fans and travel close to 100,000 miles.

Iron Maiden 2008

In an historic first, Iron Maiden, their 60-strong crew and support staff and over 12 tons of equipment will be traveling around the world en masse for the first leg of the tour in a specially commissioned and converted Astraeus Boeing 757 decorated with Maiden and Eddie designs! Vocalist Bruce Dickinson, who is a qualified Airline Captain flying for Astraeus Airlines, will pilot the plane on its epic mission, flying over 50,000 miles.

Iron Maiden jet

Comments Bruce Dickinson, “We had the idea last year of converting a jumbo jet into effectively what would be a flying 113 ton ‘splitter bus’ for touring and we have been working seriously on it ever since. It’s pretty complex but in the end we were able, with a lot of help from Astraeus Airlines, to overcome all the technicalities of customizing the plane for our purposes. We are taking out the back 10 rows of seats to fit in a customized cargo hold that we can use again in the future if this jaunt works. This is in addition to all the standard storage holds. By taking band, personnel and equipment in one form of transport it makes all the touring so much easier and overcomes the logistical difficulty of people and equipment going in different planes. We can even work out exactly how big our carbon footprint is and take care of that responsibility! We will be packing as much of the show into the plane as we possibly can for this first leg and intend to give the fans something very special to remember. And it allows me to combine 2 of my greatest passions, music and flying!!

To tie in with forthcoming 2008 releases on DVD of the classic Live After Death and Maiden England concert videos (more details coming soon) this tour, aptly entitled Somewhere Back In Time, will revisit the band’s history by focusing almost entirely on the 80’s in both choice of songs played and the stage set, which will be based around the legendary Egyptian Production of the 1984-85 Powerslave Tour. This will arguably be the most elaborate and spectacular show the band have ever presented, and will include some key elements of their Somewhere In Time tour of 1986/7, such as the Cyborg Eddie.

Steve Harris comments; “On the last tour we opened the show by playing our new album A Matter of Life And Death in its 80 minute entirety. We thought we needed the challenge and it proved the right thing to do. However, it can be hard on the fans playing so much new material and we really appreciated the superb support they gave us. So now l guess it’s payback time. It’s tremendous to be able to use the profile of the DVDs to do what is effectively an 80’s show. It will be enormous fun and by changing the approach to the songs we play tour by tour it keeps it fresh and interesting for both the band and the fans alike. l think ‘Powerslave’ was an incredible show with the Egyptian theme and look forward to seeing it all again myself. We have been planning this for a few years and hoping to take it to Australia — so we are all delighted that it has now worked out. I would also like to say that we are all are very grateful to our loyal fans in Oz who have kept the Maiden flag flying all these years and we are sorry to have disappointed you for so long. Thanks and see you there”

Rod Smallwood, Iron Maiden’s Manager, further commented; “Following Bruce’s various hints from on stage this last year about our plans for 2008 (“We are taking some time off to build some pyramids!”), fans have been pestering me for details of the tour and especially asking which songs from that era will be played. That may be as easy as a run in the hills but we will keep our aces close to our chest on this issue. I know it would only take a couple of minutes but at this stage of planning, I’d have to be clairvoyant to know what they will do. I’m sure though it will be no revelation for you that we intend to make up for those wasted years by visiting a large number of hallowed metal venues around the world. Historically Powerslave was an incredibly important album for the band and it would be madness if we didn’t give the fans a taste of the full on Iron Maiden show from that time. With our jumbo there really is no rime nor reason why the band cannot now visit fans almost everywhere as many have been real troopers to have waited this long. Heaven only knows what the band will choose but if l could and did tell you now l would have to shoot you! You’ll all have to be patient and see. But it will be spectacular. No fear!!”

Historically, this will be Maiden’s fourth Australian Tour having first toured in 1982 when The Number Of The Beast was Australia’s number one album, then again in 1985 with the original ‘Powerslave’ show and most recently in 1992 with Fear Of The Dark. However a great deal has happened with the band since then, especially in recent years when ticket sales have continued to explode around the world as the band’s loyal fan base continues to flourish. As Maiden have never had airplay or much video channel exposure anywhere in the world their popularity spread mainly by word of mouth on the back of a legacy of many great albums and an awesome live reputation. With the ever increasing power of the internet the Maiden legend has fired the imagination of new young fans around the planet, and, although their audience spans two generations, it is now predominantly a young one, inspired by the massive legacy and influence of this unique band (and, of course, Eddie).

To allow Iron Maiden fans in Australia to get right up close to the band,the fan club are organizing advance booking of tickets for members and running a special draw for them whereby 60 winners and friend at each show will be given first access to the venue and be first to the stage barrier. Full details will be on www.ironmaiden.com.

Tickets go on sale to the public 9am Thursday 27th September, but members of the Iron Maiden fan club get exclusive first access to purchase tickets from 12 noon Thursday 20th September through to 12 noon Monday 24th September. More details soon!

Update from High School Tributes.com – Teach’em All: A High School Tribute To Metallica

Patrice Beaudette at Highschooltributes.com, the website that brought you Christine Sixteen: A High School Tribute To KISS and Chrisine Sixteen 2, has re-launched their website in conjunction with their upcoming release:

TEACH’EM ALL : A HIGH-SCHOOL TRIBUTE TO METALLICA

The CD will be available sometime in April 2008 and the planned tracklisting is:

  1. Seek & Destroy
  2. Creeping Death
  3. For Whom The Bell Tolls
  4. Master of Puppets
  5. The Thing That Should Not Be
  6. Welcome Home (Sanitarium)
  7. Eye Of The Beholder
  8. Enter Sandman
  9. Sad But True
  10. I Disappear
  11. Am I Evil (originally performed by Diamond Head)

I’ll have more details on this release in the coming months…..stay tuned!

Free Heaven & Hell tickets…..sort of

They always say that nothing in life is free so, when I received an email from Live Nation last week stating I was entitled to two free tickets to see Heaven & Hell, I was skeptical.

I went to the Heaven & Hell tour stop at Mohegan Sun Casino in May. It was an excellent show with all three bands (Megadeth and Machine Head opened) performing extremely well. I had such a great time that I was definitely in for the second leg of the tour…..until I saw the prices and charges. I don’t mind paying $66 for a ticket to see H&H, Alice Cooper, & Queensryche but I couldn’t stomach the extra $22 in Ticketmaster fees…..that’s a third of the ticket price. The tour stops at the Tweeter Center in Mansfield, MA this coming Sunday (9/9/07) and, as of last week, I wasn’t attending. Then the email arrived with an offer for two “free” tickets…..

I get all the Live Nation emails because I fill out all the venue surveys they send. When I saw the Extreme reunion a year ago, I filled out a survey at the venue…..I’ve received Rolling Stone magazine for free ever since. Now I fill them all out.

So this email states that I am able to receive two free general admission lawn seats for the Heaven & Hell show as long as I pay the ticket fees of $7 per ticket. So it’s not entirely free but $14 for two lawn tix is better than the $174 I would have paid for two seats under the pavilion roof. I figure it’s a bargain I can’t pass up for a better show lineup than the one I saw already. The tickets are printed and I am going Sunday! Free is always for me…..well almost free!