Sunday Spins – 7/20/08

Combine a day off with temperatures climbing past 95 degrees and high humidity and you get a nice Summer day in Rhode Island. It’s a day to relax…..forget all the errands, all the housework, and just do what you want. My wife and kids are doing just that and, with a check of any “man of the house” duties, I am free and clear to do my own thing too. Time for some music…..

Judas Priest – Nostradmaus (2008): I worked overnoght shift last night/this morning (12am-8am) and I played this twice on the MP3 player…..a nice way to kill almost four hours! I still think there is more to like on this album if you push your expectations aside.

Ayreon – 01011001 (2008): I’ve been in the music room since about 10am this morning and I have spun both discs of this album twice. I bought this latest Arjen Lucassen masterpiece the day it came out earlier in the year but I haven’t really listened. I gave this a couple of spins and put it in the pile, it’s excellent but there is so much going on musically that you really need to sit down and listen, it’s not background music at all.

White Lion – Return Of The Pride (2008): I admit to liking White Lion back in the day and I still give their albums a spin from time to time. I followed Mike Tramp’s solo career not as closely but a new album under the “White Lion” banner had me interested. I’ve had this since it came out and only gave it a couple of spins.

U.D.O. – Mastercutor (2007): I am a very stupid man! I passed on this album time and time again all of last year and I finally broke down and grabbed it back in January. Probably one of the best albums released in 2007 and that means it would have easily been in my Top Albums list. Rene…..you were right, excellent CD!

The Who – Quadrophenia (1973): My current obsession with The Who has nothing to do with the current accolades the band is getting from VH-1 and other media outlets, it’s due to hearing a block of TOMMY songs during a “block party weekend” while on my vacation. Nothing is better than the local stations playing 3 or 4 tunes in a row from a certain band! ’5:15′ has been one of my faves Who grooves for years.

KISS – Creatures Of The Night (1982): My second favorite KISS album and probably their most metallic.

Vacation is over! Back to work…..

Well, vacation is over and I’m heading back to work this afternoon. How depressing!

It was a nice quiet 7 days off from work with the family. We went to the shore a couple of times and did a few other things but the main thing was that I got to relax. I did some things around the house and spent time with the kids without being exhausted but the thing I did for myself was catch up on some music.

Here’s a few albums I listened to on vacation, I didn’t keep a list but I pulled out a ton from my collection:

The Who – Tommy (1969): A legendary band, a legendary album. I happened to hear a block of three TOMMY songs on one of the classic rock radio stations so I pulled this out for a few spins.

Billy Joel – The Stranger (1977/2008 deluxe reissue): More Classic Rock! I picked this up last Tuesday when it came out (more on that when I post a Hunt!) and I have been listening ever since. My wife and I went to the Billy Joel concert on July 3rd so I’m still on a bit of a Billy Joel kick.

Judas Priest – Nostradamus (2008): The album that will not go away! I keep listening and finding something new but it’s still a long listen at close to 2 hours over two CDs. I’m trying to get ready for a review but there is so much music, and Priest is my second favorite band, that I want to give the album a lot of time.

Motley Crue – Saints Of Los Angeles (2008): One of the biggest releases of the year and I’m definitely still listening. There’s plenty of good songs here but I’ve had to hit the “skip” button on a few songs.

Avantasia – The Scarecrow (2008): So far, my album of the year. Tobias Sammet has really created a masterpiece project with Avantasia, something that was supposed to be a side project that’s now as big as his main band, Edguy. Best song is the Alice Cooper sung ‘The Toy Master’.

Rogue Male – First Visit (1985) and Animal Man (1986): Both of these are reissues from Metal Mind Productions and I have been giving both CDs some serious time. I haven’t heard FIRST VISIT in about 20 years! Reviews coming…..

TKO – Let It Roll (1979) and In Your Face (1984): These two albums are officially reissued CDs from Tribunal Records with tons of bonus tracks. Another time travel back to my early days because I haven’t heard IN YOUR FACE in over 20 years too! I always meant to pick up the vinyl on Ebay but Tribunal has done a solid job with the reissues. Look for reviews soon…..

Temujin – 1000 Tears (2008): The band was nice enough to pass a copy along for review and I have to admit, I was surprised by the excellent music. I had never heard of Temujin but I know them now! The music is like MANDYLION-era and NIGHTTIME BIRDS-era The Gathering with a little Lacuna Coil in there.

Infernophonic – Spark It Up (2007): Another solid Hard Rock band i missed out on in 2007. Solid album, review soon.

Benedictum – Seasons Of Tragedy (2008): It’s a really good album but I think their frist record, UNCREATION (2006), is better. I’m still enjoying it though.

Gene Simmons – Asshole (2004): I was picking through my KISS related albums and I decided that this deserved it’s annual spin to see if it’s as bad as I remembered. Unfortunately, this is just a bad album with maybe one or two songs I like. This ties with Peter Criss – One For All (2007) as the worst KISS related album ever.

Paul Stanley – Live To Win (2006): I had to pull this out to compare it to Gene’s album…..light years better! I haven’t given this a spin in a while but it’s obvious who the true creative force is behind KISS.

Griffen – Linked In Eternity (2008): Just reviewed this one and I thought it was great. Only a 5 song demo but professionally done and very cool to listen to.

There were so many more albums that I pulled from my collection that I hadn’t heard fro a long time. I started to pull out different albums from Ratt, Dokken, Scorpions, Alice Cooper, Megadeth, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, UFO, ZZ Top, and Bruce Dickinson solo. I listened to a few live albums as well from KISS, Maiden, Priest, UFO, Sabbath, Royal Hunt, Motley Crue, Scorpions, Triumph because I want to do a “live album week” in the next couple of months.

It was a great week of music!