Tag Archives: Hard rock

RivetSkull : Re-record & reissue Trail Of Souls album, add Aerosmith cover

(photo : Neil Lim Sang)

Seattle and Los Angeles-based heavy metal four-piece RivetSkull’s re-imagined full-length album was released on July 8th of this year. Trail of Souls: Samsara is a complete re-recording of the band’s self-published 2020 album Trail of Souls. The first single released was “Crash and Burn”, along with a psychedelic video. Of the single, RivetSkull says:

“‘Crash and Burn’ is about the pitfalls of relationships. Though you can try to stay clear of danger, sometimes you can’t help but fall into the same traps! The new recording and production convey the drive and momentum a song about recklessness should be swimming in. We think we got there with this song and all the others on the album.”

Oozing energy and easy-to-move-to vibes, the single brings back the classic sound of the 90s, played with precision and expert musicianship. The members of RivetSkull have been playing together previously for many years and vocalist Chad McMurray has training from Maestro David Kyle (vocal coach to Geoff Tate, Layne Staley, Ann Wilson), ensuring that the band is able to deliver a high level of production and professionalism. After self-recording and releasing their debut album during the global pandemic, they’ve revisited their songs with professional production that captures the massive sound that fans have come to expect from their live shows.

Since it’s release, Trail of Souls: Samsara has only been gaining momentum. Within the first month of it’s release, RivetSkull was fortunate enough to be featured on Band in Seattle, KISW’s Loud and Local Band of the Week, and they were interviewed for the Concerts that Made Us podcast.

Recorded at London Bridge Studio (Alice in Chains, Soundgarden, Queensrÿche) and produced by Matt Hyde (Slayer, Deftones, Seether), Trail of Souls: Samsara promises much more than a sonic retouch of the original. The reworked collection features new cover artwork and the previously unreleased recording of a cover of Aerosmith’s “King and Queens”, which has now been issued as the album’s next single/video –

*Recommended for fans of Dio, Black Sabbath, and Judas Priest, RivetSkull is well suited for those with a taste for classic metal).

Track Listing:
1. Crash and Burn (2:49)
2. Forever (5:24)
3. Mystified (3:45)
4. Another Way to Heaven (7:29)
5. Narcissus (5:01)
6. Trail of Souls (4:04)
7. It’s Not Enough (4:02)
8. Kings and Queens (Aerosmith cover) (5:16)

Trail of Souls: Samsara is available on all digital platforms at the following link – https://lnk.to/TrailOfSoulsSamsara

CROSSOVER – British rockers debut CD single

CROSSOVER is a British band of veteran rockers put together by guitarist Paul Gaskin (Gaskin) and drummer Gary Pearson (Vardis) in 2017. Originally, the band also featured singer Mike Starrs (ex Lucifer’s Friend, Colosseum II). Kevin Riddles (Angelwitch, Tytan) on bass and Martin Howells on keyboards. Following a couple of years of major health issues, and a few members moving and leaving the band regrouped with a few new faces, and Gaskin & Starrs writing new songs together. Ken Lorenz joined on bass in early 2020, just as the pandemic kicked in. From then the band was limited in their activities – “We literally could do nothing, except write new songs on our own, or Mike would send me lyrics, and I’d come up with the music. As things were easing in 2021, I decided we should get into the studio and start recording some of the songs, so at least we’d have something to work at and aim for. “ recalls Paul Gaskin. As Ken Lorenz left for a bit, Neil Murray (a friend of Mike Starrs) came in to play on a few songs. There are a few clips of the band on youtube, but at present the band has released a very limited (signed) CD single “Shangri-la” & “Gypsy Blood”. “We are currently looking for a label that suits us. In the meantime, I thought it would be a good idea to bring out a limited edition single to get some airplay. I chose a “radio friendly” number, and it’s one of those that Neil plays on.” PG.

The band: Mike Starrs – vocals Martin Howells – keyboards/vocals Ken Lorenz – bass/vocals David Pick – drums/vocals Me – guitars/vocals Guests; Neil Murray – bass Gary Pearson – percussion Kevin Riddles – bass *The single has Neil on bass and Gary on percussion on “Shangri – la”, and the regular band on “Gypsy Blood”.


*for more info on Crossover (and to order the single) check out the band’s facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/groups/1473501032735111

Also check out Paul Gaskin’s youtube page for to hear a few Crossover songs – https://www.youtube.com/user/Gaskin2000/featured


THY ROW reissue debut album ‘Unchained’ on limited vinyl

Finnish heavy metal band Thy Row will celebrate the one-year anniversary of their debut album Unchained with the release of a limited edition vinyl along with a brand new digital single entitled “Blue Blood”, a cover of one of the biggest hits by the biggest Japanese metal band of all time X Japan.

The band comments:

“We were so proud of how our debut album turned out, that we knew that it deserved a vinyl release with a bonus track as well as a brand new vinyl master. The bonus track which was initially released only in Japan is a cover of the country’s biggest ever metal band X Japan. We’ve had a ton of fun performing the song ‘Blue Blood’ live multiple times, and while recording ‘Unchained’ we decided to record that one as well! The result is energetic and heavy, just as the speed metal classic should be! Join us and our wonderful label Rockshots Records who were open to realizing these wishes in celebrating the one-year anniversary of our first album, and we hope you enjoy what we have to offer with these releases!” 

The vinyl was mastered by Svante Forsbäck (Rammstein, Volbeat) at Chartmakers Studios, and will be released together with the digital single ‘Blue Blood (X Japan Cover)’ on October 7th, 2022.

Recommended for fans of The Scorpions, Megadeth, and Queen, Thy Row’s vinyl of Unchained is available for pre-order at – bit.ly/ThyRowVINYL

Founded in 2017, Thy Row made their first entry on the Finnish scene with their 2019 independently released self-titled EP. The record’s lead single “The Round” reached over 110K streams on Spotify and added to the EP’s overall praise that gave the group the opportunity to tour Japan in 2019 with Beast In Black and Swallow The Sun.

Following the success of that EP, Thy Row’s offered up their first full-length, a fresh mix of the finest heavy metal with modern hard rock that every metalhead can bang their heads to. With ten tracks, there are lots of great melodies spiced up with shakin’ riffs that are sure to encourage fans to turn up their stereo knobs all the way to eleven and enjoy.

Unchained features guest artists Ben Varon (Oceanhoarse, ex-Amoral), Ilja Jalkanen (Raskasta Joulua, Kiuas), and Teemu Mäntysaari (Wintersun, Smackbound) plus was mixed by Jussi Kraft (Starkraft Studio) and partly by Nino Laurenne (Sonic Pump Studios).​

Thy Row is:
Mikael Salo – Vocals
Jussi Laulainen – Guitar
Ville Vase – Guitar
Juho Jokimies – Bass
Teemu “Snake” Laitinen Drums

For more info:



SALLY STEELE – ’80s recordings get released

For fans of ’80s hard rock comes this official release of Sally Steele’s recordings from 1988 and 89. Alone in Love (1988-1989) features six tracks of guitar driven rock that sounds like it could’ve done well had it come out back in the day. Call it ‘hair metal’ or whatever, but there’s some good stuff with rockers like the title track that kicks things off here, as well as “Too Bad (It Had To Be You), and the keyboard infused “Leave My Heart Alone”. There’s also the power ballad “The Only One”. Any of these songs would’ve fit nicely on radio in the ’80s.

Sally Steele would go on to great success starting and publishing Vegas Rocks! Magazine, as well as VegasRocksTV.com

*for more info check out the press release and links below…

Vintage ‘80s Metal Recordings From Video Vixen SALLY STEELE Finally See Worldwide Release!

Los Angeles, CA – With her teased-up blonde hair and supermodel looks, it’s no surprise that Sally Steele found herself cast in music videos by the likes of Loverboy, Eric Carmen, Bruce Willis and others. But her true passion was always in music creation and so, in 1986, she put a band together and started performing shows in the musical mecca of Hollywood’s Sunset Strip.

Soon she crossed paths with mega producer Paul Sabu (Heart, John Waite, Glass Tiger and more) who helped Steele bring two of her songs to life, “Too Bad (It Had To Be You” and “Leave My Heart Alone.” A music video was filmed for the latter and premiered on MTV’s Basement Tapes show in 1988.

After some personnel changes, Steele’s band soldiered on with more songs and recordings. They became regulars at The Coconut Teaser, FM Station, Madame Wong’s and The Whisky. However, as the music scene began to change in the early ‘90s Steele decided it was best to hang up her guitar – but she never lost her true passion. As Steele puts it “It was back when the Seattle grunge scene had replaced the music I loved from the ‘80s and I was told my music was ‘too commercial.’ But here we are today and I am so excited to finally get my material out to the world. I hope you enjoy my songs from the 1980s. And one thing that has never changed is – I still live and breathe rock n’ roll 24 hours a day!”

Stream/download the album: https://orcd.co/8qdbo1a




NESTOR – A new interview on the band’s success, live shows, and a future album

It’s been well over a year since Nestor dropped their first video for their debut track “On The Run”. The video was a huge – an immediate success, with the retro and hilarious clip now at well over 400 thousand views! The band followed with videos for the tracks “1989” and “Tomorrow” (the latter featuring Samantha Fox). Eventually came the band’s awesome full length album, and numerous live dates in Europe, with the band’s own hometow “NestorFest” being their latest highlight. In this exchange singer Tobias Gustavsson details the band’s last year and what is to come. As a fan, I am looking forward to the band’s debut album getting a major re-release next month, as well as talk of a follow-up album coming in the (hopefully) no-so-distant future.

*Be sure to check out links at the end of this interview…

Kids In A Ghost Town has been quite a  success so far. How has the whole success of the videos, the album, and recognition changed your life directions over the past year? And has it all exceeded any expectations when you put out the album? 

Well it has made life a little more interesting for sure, haha! No but it has absolutely exceeded our expectations. I think we had an idea that the music would be received well when we started working on the songs and everything. But you never know when releasing music, so much has to do with timing, luck and other stuff. But the stars seem to have been perfectly aligned and we are totally overwhelmed by the reception we’ve had! We’re super happy, super humble and it’s been super fun!

As to how life has changed, it’s been kind of weird because we’re all grown up men with families, jobs, and ordinary lives. So in one sense things are kind of normal, during the weekdays. But then we have been out quite a lot on weekends lately, playing festivals all over and that’s a totally different beast! We get to be rockstars for a little while you know! But then it’s back to reality, fixing breakfast for kids, going to our regular workplaces and so on. It’s been kind of good to have this happen now, when we can handle all the things happening and keeping our feet on the ground. If this would have happened when we were young teenagers I don’t think we would have handled it as good – or appreciated it like we do now. It’s like we can really take it in and enjoy it now, if you know what I mean.

You guys have played a lot of shows , festivals, opening slots… I am sure there have been many, but are some of the biggest highlights for each of you? Can you mention any favorite bands [ie Kiss] that  you have got to check out or meet?  [any stories — You have got share stages with a few of my favorites like Deep Purple, Uriah Heep, Europe…. ] , biggest crowds, etc.. 

Opening for KISS was awesome for sure, they’re real childhood idols to all of us. We also got to meet them briefly backstage and take a picture. But that was about it, no small talk with Gene really you know, haha! But still very cool! Generally, honestly, we haven’t had the time to watch many other bands. We played the same festival as Europe for instance, but different days. So we missed out on that. But we have met a lot of nice people backstage and talked to a lot of cool people, both artists and others! A fun side note was that when we played Atlas Rock a sound engineer passed us after the gig and complemented the live sound. He told us that he’d better step up his game. So we asked who he was there with, and it was the sound guy for Uriah Heep! Haha, nice compliment! (PS, our sound guy Emil is truly the best btw!)

How much of the album is performed in the band’s live show? And is there any ‘new’ tracks or covers included on occasion?

Depending on how much stage time we have, we’ve played pretty much all the tracks from the album. The only one we haven’t aired live yet is We Are Not Ok, but that might change in the future, we’ll see. Just recently when we played our own hometown Falköping and what we called NESTOR FEST, we played the album tracks, and our new single Signed In Blood, AND the two additional tracks that will be included on the Deluxe Edition of our album that comes out at the end of September. One of those is a cover by the way, and a pretty unexpected choice too I would say! It’s an 80s track, but a big pop hit, but our version sort of! And we also did Gary Moore’s The Loner so our guitar player Jonny could shine a little extra too!

Nestor has signed to Napalm Records. How did that come about and what is the plan – including a 2nd album? [Has writing begun for a 2nd album or is there an estimated released date?] 

There will be a 2nd album! Work on that has been started. But as I mentioned, Napalm will release our debut album Kids In A Ghost Town in a Deluxe Edition with 3 additional tracks. The signing with them was pretty undramatic. We had been holding off signing with a label because we were looking for the right partner. And the guys at Napalm seemed to get our thing so we made a deal to work with them, and yeah, the Deluxe version comes out late September. As for the next proper album, when it comes out and so on, nothing has been set yet, but it won’t be another 30 years at least, promise haha!

What might fans expect on a 2nd Nestor album? Anything you guys would like to try differently, cover, or do more of ?

I think that if you liked what we did on the first album, you will like the next one. It’s going to be all centered around the same era, with the 80s music as a stepping stone, sound wise. For us it all comes down to great songs and great melodies. That’s kind of what the 80s was a lot about. But at the same time, we will absolutely look for ways to push boundaries and what Nestor can be, you know. Hopefully it will be awesome, and it definitely won’t be boring!!!

Has there been offers to get on to some tours outside of Europe, such as the UK, Australia , or Canada and the US ? Any plans or wishes to get to certain territories you haven’t played yet? [Would be great to see the band, along with a number of other Swedish acts over here] 

There have been some stuff, offers and suggestions, but these things take time in my experience (from being in the music industry for many years). You kind of have to bide your time and work each region or geographical area one step at a time. With that said, we would love to come over to North America for instance. But at the same time, we want to do it properly from the start, and not, you know, half-ass it. But hopefully we’ll see you soon!

Lastly, from Canada here, curious how familiar you guys are with Canadian bands and if you might have a few favorite Canadian bands and albums?

Oh, Canada! We kind of feel that you’re our northern sibling from another time zone, friendly, uncomplicated and just great people! There are a lot of awesome Canadian acts. Rush for sure is one that comes to mind first, I mean, who doesn’t love Rush! And Big Wreck, do they count as Canadian? They were awesome! And you can’t be an 80s admirer and not mention Saga, or Loverboy! And honestly, Nickelback gets a lot of bad rep, but man, Chad knows how to write songs, right? As for newer stuff, The Weekend has been doing some amazing things lately, also with a bit of 80s touch in a way, right? And best album? Tough one, but Reckless by Bryan Adams – Come on!


Live photos courtesy of Basse Hellgren, taken at Nestorfest . To see more check out – http://www.rockbladet.se





*thanks to Peter Kjellin


SERPICO – The Chosen Four, out now!

From Finland, Serpico (great name!) has released their 3rd full album – The Chosen Four (cool album cover by Rauli Mard) . A fun set of somewhat ’80s influenced hard rockers. Cool lead off track “Riverbanks” reminds me of early ’80s Kiss (especially that intro). Lots of ‘rock’ here, via anthems “Rock Your Brain”, “I Am A Rocker”, and “Holy Rocks Outta Body” (the latter featuring a nice Chuck Berry sounding inspired intro). All guitar driven rockers, No keyboards! Best cuts being “Midnight Cowboy” and the heavy power ballad “Dark Energy”.

*For more info check out the press bio below …

Finnish rockers Serpico released their latest album  “The Chosen Four” this July 1st, via Rockshots Records. The album was produced by platinum-selling Finnish record producer Anssi Kippo (Children of Bodom, Hanna Pakarinen, Teräsbetoni).

“Warmth of full analog sound is the key word on this particular record. There are many things you have been missing out on in music and in the listening experience, I think. We hope fans will pay full attention to the album and go along with the music. I must say there is no way back from the world of analog recording once you step into it. This is the way we are going to do it from this moment on.” adds vocalist Vee Dour.

“People will definitely notice its high quality in songs, production, the sound & versatility if comparing to nowadays, dull sound world n’ song arrangements. Also, there’s a big difference when doing it all by full analog session, which we did. So, it’s gonna stand out pretty easily from the masses, I think. Although I hope so.” also adds drummer Jani Serpico.

Album pre-order links:
Vinyl – https://bit.ly/TheChosenFourVINYL
CD – https://bit.ly/TheChosenFourCD

Since Serpico‘s inception in 2005, they have released two full-lengths “Rose Tattoo” (2018), ‘Shallow Mistress” (2014), and an EP “Bad Commercial” (2011) along with touring all over Finland, Sweden, Estonia, Latvia, and England. The band is genuine and unique Rock n’ Roll with big respect for the classic titans.

SERPICO is: Vee Dour – Lead Vocals / Snake – Lead guitars & backing vocals / Andy – Bass & backing vocals / Jani Serpico – Drums & backing vocals.

1. Riverbanks
2. Midnight Cowboy
3. Rock Your Brain
4. I Am A Rocker
5. Dark Energy
6. Silent Love
7. Smokin’ Hot Mama
8. Holy Rocks Outta Body
9. The Last Days Of Monopoly

For more info:


LUGNET – Tales From The Great Beyond Interview

Sweden’s LUGNET have recorded 3 albums; including their brand new album – Tales From The Great Beyond, which will be released on August 26. Over the past few years the band went through a few changes, and their new album will appeal to classic hard rock and metal fans, with heavy influences of Rainbow, Sabbath, and a few ’80s metal acts. (*Check out my review in a previous post) . In this new interview bandmembers – (Johan Fahlberg, Lennart “Z” Zethzon, Matti Norlin, Fredrik Jansson-Punkka, and Micke Linder)  answer my questions pertaining to the band’s previous work, influences, and most importantly about their excellent new disc Tales From The Great Beyond.

*Check out more on the band at the links below….

How was reaction to the band’s previous 2 albums, and what did you want to do [perhaps] differently on the new album?

Lennart Zethzon: Overall the reaction has been very good for the first two albums. What we might have lacked a bit is in the production part.
For the third album we decided to focus more on the recording and mixing. We also wanted to record with the whole band at the same time to get a live feeling. For the first two albums we only recorded Drums and Bass at the same time.

Where did the band’s name come from – what is the meaning behind it?

Jansson Punkka: There is a small area close to where we had our first rehearsal space called Lugnet. Our old guitarist Bonden suggested it and it stuck. It means calm in Swedish. Oh the irony…

Can you guys tell me about the band’s last few years since 2019’s Nightwalker album — what’s changed in the band? And was the new album conceived and written during the pandemic?

Jansson Punkka: When the pandemic hit we were lucky enough not to have that much booked so we spent a year writing and arranging songs instead. We also got a new guitar player called Micke Linder that joined us in 2019.

The title Tales From The Great Beyond might suggest some sort of concept of stories [storyline]. Why the album title? and is there any themes or concept to this new album?

Jansson Punkka: No not really, the title just came to me one day, thought it sounded nice and majestic and fitting for the music. Could be the title of an old novel.

There is definitely a ’70s hard rock feel / sound to this album.  Was there any sorta deliberate approach to make it sound a bit old school?

Jansson Punkka: We have always sounded like this so it wasn’t like we planned it. In fact I would say that we might be leaning a bit towards the early 80’s on some of the songs.
Lennart Zethzon: In the mixing and mastering we decided to not press it to hard and let it be more dynamic.

Can you give me a bit of story behind a few of the songs, like Pale Design, Black Sails, Another World, ..? [and any others]

Johan Fahlberg: I guess all of them are about the search for a better place, a better you. Trying to find the inner peace in your self. A life long struggle. I know, it’s a little bit dark but there’s sunshine too, hahaha… Pale Design is about a nightmare, but also a dream of a better world and a better life. 
Black Sails is a feeling of being not normal, being an outsider. A feeling of people looking at you with disgust. Only thing you want is to live your life and be who you are without judgment.  
 Another World is a story of how hard you try to stand your ground and believing in the truth. The struggle to navigate through what’s real and what’s fake, and everyone that believes they have all the right answers.

There is lots of great heavy guitar playing on this album [riffs, solos, etc…]  Can you guys talk a bit about guitar influences and sounds you wanted and how the guitar parts were worked out in the studio?  

For me sound-wise for this band it’s very simple; just my early 70’s sounding Fender Strat’ into a 1971 Marshall Superlead on about 8; that combined with Matti’s a bit more saturated guitar tone I think creates a well balanced, quite heavy humbucker/single coil rhythm guitar sound on this album, with good clarity for the clean parts.
Guitar players that I look up to and have listened to a lot over the years and probably been a bit influenced by: Ritchie Blackmore, Yngwie Malmsteen, Steve Morse, Billy Gibbons…

I wanted the guitar to sound like a mix of AC/DC and early Black Sabbath. Loud. We worked out the parts in our rehearsal studio.

Carl Westholm plays the keyboards on some of the album tracks [?] Was he just recording with the band as a ‘guest’  or might he be performing with the band live?

Lennart Zethzon: Carl was just recording as a guest but who knows, maybe he will guest with us live sometime as well.

Can someone explain the meaning of the final track “Tåsjö Kyrkmarsch”?  It’s quite a piece, and a nice ending to the album. Where did the musical idea and idea to use it at the end come from?

 Matti Norlin: Tåsjö is a village close to where I grew up, and the place where the church is located in that area. I came up with the tune around year 2000, and wrote it down for church organ in 2016 to be played at my father’s funeral in that church (where I also made the recording for our album).

What have been some of the bandmembers biggest and favorite shows in recent years? [certain festivals or opening slots for anyone in particular?] And what major shows have you got coming up that you guys are looking forward to?

It must be Sweden Rock Festival 2018. We played at the same time as Ozzy entered the main stage. One could think that it would give us a reduced audience, but we managed to get around 4000 people choosing Lugnet instead of Ozzy. We got a great review in Sweden Rock Magazine, 8/10 and Ozzy got a 7/10 :))

Can you tell me a bit about the album’s artwork – who created it and how much input and who’s  went in to it?

Jansson Punkka: Vance Kelly did the artwork, he did our first album as well. Such an amazing artist. We sent him the songs and let him do his thing and it turned out great. It’s one of those covers that you could look at forever and still find new things. Make sure to buy the vinyl version if you want to see the whole artwork.

Hard Rock and metal seems to be alive and well in Sweden. Can you comment on the scene there and some of your favorite [or recommended] fellow Swedish acts ?

Jansson Punkka: There is a band called Stew that we had the pleasure of doing a couple of gigs this year. Really nice guys and a great band as well.

Can each of you guys give me a short list of a few favorite players, singers, etc… as well as a Top 10 of favorite albums from your youth?

Jansson Punkka: Favorite drummer of all times would be Bill Ward, if we’re talking about new drummers Eloy Casagrande is something out of this world.
Favorite albums: The first 8 Sabbath-Albums, Born Again and “En ny tid är här with November.

Matti Norlin: In this style of music I list as follows:
Guitarists: Angus Young, Ace Frehley
Albums: Master of reality, Rising, Powerage, Who Do We think we are, Kiss Alive, Iron Maiden, Restless And Wild, Are You Experienced, Sweet FA and Melissa.

Johan Fahlberg
Singers: Ronnie James Dio, Rob Halford, Ian Gillan, Ray Gillen
Albums: Destroyer, Van Halen, A Dangerous Meeting, Let There Be Rock, Defenders Of The Faith, Restless And Wild, Masters Of Reality, Heaven And Hell, Desolation Boulevard, Never Mind The Bollocks.

Lennart Zethzon: In this style of music:
Bass players: Jack Bruce, Geezer Butler, Roger Glover and Neil Murray
Albums: Destroyer, Kiss Alive II, The Jimi Hendrix Concerts, Mob Rules, Mahogany Rush IV, Made in Japan, Rising, Live In the Heart of the City, Strung Up, Foghat Live.

A few of my favorite rock oriented electric guitar players of all time would be Ritchie Blackmore, Yngwie Malmsteen, David Gilmour, Jimi Hendrix, Paul Gilbert, Eric Clapton, Mark Knophler, Eddie Van Halen…there’s so many…
Favorite albums: Machine Head, In Rock, Burn, Voulez Vous, Dark Side Of The Moon, Led Zeppelin IV, Down To Earth, Tyr, Paper Money, Eliminator







AVI ROSENFELD : Latest in Very Heepy Very Purple series out now.

Very Heepy Very Purple XIII is the latest in Avi Rosenfeld’s series of original hard rock influenced by …..Uriah Heep and Deep Purple! Rosenfeld, born in 1980, is from Netany, Israel and has 63 albums to his credit (tho he says it may be 64 by the time I publish this article!). The 2 bands that Avi sites as his favorites are obviously noticeable throughout this album – there’s harmonies, Hammond organ, various keyboards, and plenty of hooks and solos sounding like Blackmore was his major guitar influence. But there’s more than just a Heep/Purple combo thing going on here -lead off track “Icarus Dream” starts off with a symphonic rock keys and piano before the riff [band] kick in, which sounds fairly Iron Maiden, but the song quickly progresses with harmonies, lead vocals, some Hammond organ in the mix, … a good lead off track. There’s bits of blues, symphonic rock, even a bit of an Indian inspired intro on the non-lyric track “Nigun”. Fave cuts include “Silver Shines” [gotta love when the Blackmore-type solo kicks in and it all speeds up], the fast paced “Knights Of The Castle” [Rainbow?], and “Marching To Nowhere”.

Avi Rosenfeld writes all the music & lyrics here, and works with a number of players and different singers on this album, presumably through online connections. He also plays some great guitar throughout. Cool album artwork, as it seems to be with all of Avi’s releases. Very Heep Very Purple – sounds like an interesting series I’ll need to check out further. Avi notes of the album – “Heavy Metal is the cure for these crazy times that we live in. This is another chapter in the Very Heepy Very Purple saga with influences from times where music at its best and played from the heart.
From times where people actually had patience to listen and waited for the cool guitar solo, or even to the end of the song. From times where you could hold up the cover art and imagine the sounds and feelings. Times where every power chord made you move, and every note had a meaning..”

You can listen to the album and order Avi Rosenfeld’s albums at > https://avirosenfeld.bandcamp.com/

*Avi has also since released a new solo album titled 40 Years On The Road

Additional links:




CLASSLESS ACT Release debut album

LA hard rockers Classless Act have released their debut album Welcome To The Show, featuring 12 tracks, and including a couple of big name guests. If you are missing the high energy ’80s hard rock/metal of bands like Motley Crue, Guns ‘n Roses, Faster Pussycat, Slaughter…. Lots of good riffs, hooks, big vocal choruses, and songs geared for a live show. Best picks include “This Is For You” (featuring Justin Hawkins of The Darkness), “Haunting Love”, “Time To Bleed”, and the album’s lone acoustic number “Circles”. The band is currently on The Stadium Tour (w/ Def Leppard, Poison… ) and I’m betting are bringing the most energy to the day. The band does have a solo show booked in Toronto on August 9 at the Horseshoe Tavern. https://www.horseshoetavern.com/event/classless-act

[From press release: ] Today Classless Act, one of the most buzzed-about up-and-coming rock bands, are releasing their much-anticipated debut album, Welcome To The Show via Better Noise Music. Having already earned more than one million streams, the new album gained early traction with three previously released singles, including the self-titled “Classless Act” that features a guest appearance by Mötley Crüe’s Vince Neil, the catchy “This Is For You” with Justin Hawkins of The Darkness, and the bombastic “Time To Bleed.” 

“Just like the song says, we gave you all our blood, our sweat, our tears, our hate, our sex, our deepest, darkest fears. This is for you!” said frontman Derek Day about the album.

Also premiering today is the new single and music video, “All That We Are,” the final installment in the four-part, interlocking video series that loosely follows the band as they set the soundtrack for the misadventures of Farley, an unlucky soul in the wrong place at the wrong time.

“All that we are – is it enough for us to survive?” asks Day. “This is a question, a concept we found ourselves asking after all we have been through over the past two years. Hell, the past seven or so years. We’ve been in a wee bit of a less-than-sunny time in our history. So what are we gonna do? Grow or go! Everyone needs to decide. We’ve got a show tonight, so I know what we’re doing!” 

Classless Act is poised to find a whole new legion of fans, first with their single “Classless Act” appearing on the soundtrack for THE RETALIATORS film, out this fall, and as they continue in their opening spot on this summer’s 36-date North American Stadium Tour, performing alongside Mötley Crüe, Def Leppard, Poison and Joan Jett. The tour kicked off June 16 in Atlanta and runs through September 9 in Las Vegas.

“They’re going to be right at home on this tour,” said Loudwire’s Toni Gonzalez. “They are straight up, fun rock ‘n’ roll, high energy, a little dirty and very reminiscent of when rock reigned supreme.”

Classless Act’s previous tour alongside Dorothy ushered in a slew of positive reviews, with Front Row Perspective writing, “Every now and again you run across a band which you can immediately categorize as ‘I saw them when’ for future conversations. Classless Act is one of those bands!” Or Official Indie who heralded, “Classless Act hit the stage at 100 miles per hour…Watching the high energy act on stage made me think of what it must have been like to have seen Guns N Roses when they first started.”

While the music tells it’s own story, so do the members of the band themselves, hailing from all over the globe, including Hawaii, Los Angeles, Argentina and Dallas. The band, featuring Derek Day (vocals), Dane Pieper (guitar), Griffin Tucker (guitar), Franco Gravante (bass), and Chuck McKissock (drums), first formed in 2018 when the five former strangers met via social media. 

1.     Classless Act (feat. Vince Neil of Mötley Crüe) 
2.     This Is For You (feat. Justin Hawkins of The Darkness)
3.     Time To Bleed
4.     On My Phone 
5.     All That We Are 
6.     Made In Hell 
7.     Storm Before The Calm 
8.     Haunting Love 
9.     Walking Contradiction 
10.  Give It To Me 
11.  Circles 
12.  Thoughts From A Dying Man

Digital, CDs, cassettes and colored vinyl copies of the album can be ordered HERE.

When they released their debut single “Give It To Me” in the summer of 2021, Classless Act were immediately praised for their ability to sound both fresh and timeless. Loudwire instantly added the song to their “Weekly Wire” Spotify playlist, identifying it as one of the top new releases of the summer. And other iconic outlets, like SPIN Magazine, were early to show support. It was a fitting public introduction to a band who embody what it means to be modern rock stars. 

Formed in 2018 and consisting of five former strangers who met via social media, Classless Act — Derek Day/vocals, Dane Pieper/guitar, Griffin Tucker/guitar, Franco Gravante/bass, and Chuck McKissock/drums — quickly formed a brotherhood bonded through a series of double-taps, DM’s, and tagged comments. Their music echoes the hallmarks of previous generations – anthemic rhythms, shreddy guitars, and soaring vocals – but punches its way into the future with clever arrangements, sharp musicianship, and proficient songwriting; and, according to one writer, “…enough energy to power a city.” 

Already making noise in the industry, the band has worked with world-class producers like Bob Rock, Michael Beinhorn and Joe Chiccarrelli, who have helped craft hits for the likes of The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Metallica, Soundgarden, and The White Stripes. The band recently landed a deal with Better Noise Music, Mediabase and Billboard’s #1 rock label for 2021, and their debut album, Welcome to the Show, will be released June 24, 2022.   Having been invited to join the line-up on The Stadium Tour, this summer’s 36-date, co-headline trek with Motley Crue and Def Leppard, Classless Act is well on its way to achieving its collective goal – being a next-generation defining act.

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TALAS – Announce new album 1985

TALAS are back with the release of their new album 1985, which will see a September 23, 2022 release via Metal Blade Records. Fans can preorder the album and check out the new single “Crystal Clear”.

Formed in the mid 70s and dissolved in 1985, TALAS may have never reached arena-headlining status but they were an integral part of the early 80s hard rock scene, and their long awaited return does not disappoint. “The time was right and we were all into it, no one needed any convincing, we were all instantly excited to do it,” explains bassist Billy Sheehan, who is rejoined by drummer Mark Miller and powerhouse vocalist Phil Naro, as well as new recruit Kire Najdovski on guitar. “It’s like we never stopped – everything fell together so easily. It was quite wonderful.” Now they return with 1985, 11 tracks of classic hard rock, picking up where they left off, and it is a release that will have old school fans salivating and new followers fired up with its big riffs, seductive choruses and killer soloing – basically everything that could be wanted from a TALAS record.

Najdovski may be relatively new to the band, but his playing is pure Talas. “He’s a great player with great ideas and a joy to work with. Phil had worked with him previously, so I trusted his judgement, and it worked out perfectly.” The band also welcomed former guitarist Mitch Perry to appear on the record, playing on the two songs that he wrote, “Crystal Clear” and “On The Take”, adding an extra dimension and bringing back more of that old school vibe.

Asked why people should be excited for this comeback, Sheehan answers enthusiastically. “Because so many of them were there, with us, and a million other great bands that made the 80s such a special musical experience. And also there are so many who might not have been there but have fallen in love with that spirit as well. We feel a very special bond with them all.”

With all but one song – “Black And Blue” – written in 1985, the album would have been their fourth full-length had they not split, and while they have worked hard to get the best out of them they have not tampered with the tracks or given them a modern twist, letting them live in the era in which they were created. “We wanted a snapshot of our musical life from 1985,” explains Sheehan. “It’s the same spirit, mostly the same people, and it’s bringing the 80s into 2022. The 80s were an amazing time for music and bands, and we were all excited to go back to that, and I would say the record is raw, real, honest, and exhilarating.”

The album was recorded in Miller’s living room, in the house he built, utilizing a mobile recording setup, and according to Sheehan the sessions were “an absolute joy.” Coordinating everything remotely during the pandemic – with Russ Mackay handling the engineering/mixing/mastering from Toronto – was the hardest aspect of recording, but they managed to pull it all together, making a record that sounds cohesive from start to finish, giving no suggestion that it was anything but a smooth process. As well as Mitch Perry’s guest appearance the band also invited Naro’s son, James, to appear on the record, who “sang some harmonies – like father, like son, he sounded really great.” There are hopes to tour the record, though sadly, after a years long battle with cancer, Naro passed in 2021, but thankfully he recorded all of his parts prior to his death, and 1985 stands as a great epitaph to a great vocalist.

1985 will be available in the following formats:
– Digital
– Digipak-CD
– 180g Black Vinyl (EU exclusive)
– Gold Vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 300 copies)
– Clear/Pale Green Marbled Vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 300 copies)
– White/Black Marbled Vinyl (US)