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Monday, October 02, 2006

WASP have delayed their new album until early next year.

Megadeth guitarist Dave Mustaine may have re-ignited his long-running feud with former band Metallica. At a gig in New York he messed around with an intentionally jumbled version of Mechanix, the song that Metallica recorded as The Four Horsemen after sacking him, before sarcastically telling the crowd: “That’s how they [Metallica] play it... This is how we [Megadeth] play it”.

Blackmore’s Night have replaced bassist Sir Robert of Normandy, with an individual called Baron St James. The band’s Christmas album, Winter Carols, is released via AFM Records on November 24.

According to the Sunday Mirror, vocalist Peter Gabriel has decided to sit out a 'money-spinning' reunion tour with Genesis. Gabriel’s schedule is booked until 2008, though vocalist/drummer Phil Collins, guitarist Steve Hackett, bassist Mike Rutherford and keyboard player Tony Banks want to get things moving by next summer.

Audioslave guitarist Tom Morello was among around 400 people arrested for protesting the rights of immigrant hotel workers at Los Angeles Airport. “They make 20 per cent less wages than hotel workers around the rest of Los Angeles,” Morello told reporters. “We’re here to express our solidarity with them.”

COLDPLAY are set to take five-year hiatus from recording to concentrate on their families.

DANZIG has enlisted TYPE O NEGATIVE's Kenny Hickey as the group's new guitarist.

PRESS RELEASES

Liberation Entertainment announces the 6th November 2006 U.K. release of the first-ever live DVD from U.S based, multi-platinum recording artists, Collective Soul. Recorded in April 2005, this out-standing concert was filmed in the band’s hometown of Atlanta, during two special sold-out performances featuring the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra.

Not only will ‘Home’ be available on DVD, but fans will also have the chance to purchase ‘Home’ as a 2 disc CD, comprising of the concert soundtrack with bonus tracks, and finally, the ultimate audio – visual treat, a DVD and CD double-bill package.

The 20-song collection spans ninety minutes and encompasses hits from Collective Soul’s seven studio albums, including their most recent release, ‘Youth’. The talented youngsters who make up the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra do a sterling job, aided by the fact that Collective Soul’s alternative rock lends itself to their atmospheric sounds. Band and orchestra engage brilliantly, providing an audio and visual experience set to entertain and satisfy existing fans, but strong and unique enough to capture and hold the attention of those only just discovering the music of Collective Soul.

The DVD special features include behind-the-scenes footage and documentary, and the CD is enhanced with video, never-before-released tracks, and more. Recording in an orchestral setting enabled the group to reinterpret their hits. Songs such as ‘Shine’, ‘December’, ‘The World I Know’, and ‘Precious Declaration’ have all been given a new twist.

Collective Soul have sold over 10 million records worldwide, and their most recent studio album charted high in the U.S. Billboard 100. Their songs feature in the hit films ‘Scream 2’ and Wes Craven’s ‘Cursed’, plus their 1994 single ‘Shine’ was recently covered by Country legend Dolly Parton, who went on to make it a world-wide hit.

REVIEWS

ED ALLEYNE-JOHNSON ‘Reflections’ (2006) Wingspan Records

Former New Model Army member Alleyne-Johnson’s ‘Purple Violin Concerto’ is a real ‘must have’ for any music collection with some wonderful music contained on that album. He now turns his attention to covering rock classics that were an influence on him and unlike other covers albums this has no vocals and no guitars, instead he weaves some magic on his violin!
Nine tracks in all with stand outs being ‘Kashmir’ (although like the rest of this album a deeper drum sound would have been nice) and a stunning run through ‘Freebird’. It’s amazing to hear the violin replace triple guitar parts. ‘Child In Time’ just doesn’t sound right without Ian Gillan’s screaming vocals, whereas Pink Floyd’s ‘Shine On You Crazy Diamond’ takes on a whole new life.
Very enjoyable album and one that you will keep coming back to.

***1/2
Jason Ritchie

NEW RHODES ‘Songs From The Lodge’ (2006) www.newrhodes.com

Bristol based band tipped for becoming ‘the next big thing’ and gaining some rave reviews from the music press according to the PR blurb. I am always wary of hyped bands as like most music buyers prefer to make my own mind up and having listened to this album they have the musical ability but lack killer tunes. Vocally they are a cross between the Smiths and Belle & Sebastian, although sadly nowhere as good as either band. The single, ‘History of Britain’ and ‘I’m Bored Of You’ are worth downloading for sure but otherwise try as I might I can’t really find much else to like on this album.

**1/2
Jason Ritchie

Axel Rudi Pell – Mystica (SPV 2006)

Axel Rudi Pell, has been around for many years, making music for over 25 years. For some reason, he seems to have passed me by, until now. I’ve always known the name, know he was a talented guitarist, yet never managed to hear a single not of his music. I was expecting a healthy dose of European melodic hard rock, and I was partly correct.
After the obligatory brief into, the album’s real opener, ‘Fly To The Moon’, kicks off things in fine style.
Yet, some how manages to fall flat on it’s face midway through the chorus. A song begging for a strong chorus, yet , Johnny Gioeli’s golden vox, cannot carry an average song to any dizzy heights.
The next song does exactly the same, ‘Rock The Nation’, good idea, yet apart from the ripping solo from ARP, there is nothing memorable about it.
The rest of the album follows suit, a set of decent songs, that are okay, but not great, nothing that hasn’t been done a million times already, yet ARP doesn’t seem to be able to breath fire into, what could have been a more than excellent album. His soloing is spot on, his choice of notes, sound, style, everything, as a guitarist is top notch. A couple of moments save, Mystica’, from the scrapheap. ‘Valley Of Sin’ and the epic title track, stretch things out a little and show that ARP can pen a decent tune or two. The album’s true highlight, is the blistering instrumental ‘Haunted Castle Serenade’, a true showcase for the wonderful fingers of Mr.Pell.
The best is saved for last, closing in on ten minutes, ‘The Curse Of The Damned’, is almost Rainboweque.
But I think it’s the songwriting, the bread and butter of any band, some how dosen’t match ARP guitar prowess.
There’s nothing indulgent, over the top, nor is ARP using the songs on offer as a vehicle for his guitar histrionics.
Maybe he should have been a little more indulgent and done a, ‘Yngwie’!

3/5
Graham Boyle

Dead Or American – Ends

With a name like Dead Or American, the listener or reviewer is going to take notice of any band baring such a name.
I don’t know, if you’d call this nu-rock, garage hard rock, whatever, Dead Or American, take the low tech road. Sounding very lively, and what could be recorded live in the studio with minimal takes, ‘Ends’ is the band’s second release.
I really don’t know what to say about this, it’s not my thing at all, but I can see the younger crowd liking this. The vocals are bearable, just, not in the much of singing, some shouting, screaming and some loud guitars. I cannot hear much in the way of any vocal or musical melodies, 52 minutes of forgettable, for a better word, noise’.
Towards the end of this album, the words, Indie rock, came into my mind, and a sense of relief, knowing, I didn’t have to hear this again.

1/5
Graham Boyle

WHITE ‘White’ (2006) The Store For Music www.thestoreformusic.com

Featuring Yes drummer Alan White and former Yes colleague & Asia member Geoff Downes this is an enjoyable set of melodic progressive rock. The rest of the line-up features vocalist Kevin Currie, bassist Steve Boyce and guitarist Karl Haug. The sound is a mix of ‘Drama’ era Yes plus a hint of Asia although Geoff Downes reigns in his more grandiose keyboard runs instead providing a Hammond driven sound to many of the songs. ‘Fate’ and ‘Crazy Believer’ really see the band let loose and vocalist Kevin Currie is a real find as he has a very melodic style. Many of the song arrangements bring to mind Magnum as the melodies are every strong and although the guitar is always present it never drowns out the overall sound.
Asia and Magnum fans in particular will enjoy this album I am sure. Hopefully this album won’t disappear in the flood of albums out there as it is very enjoyable listen.

***1/2
Jason Ritchie

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