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Book review: The Sweet in the 1970s by Darren Johnson

The Sweet in the 1970s DecadesSonicbond Publishing [Publication date 20.07.21; 24.09.21 US only] Reviewing a book by a fellow GRTR! writer, ooh tricky one but luckily Darren Johnson has written a short, concise, informative and entertaining book on 70s glam rock icons the Sweet. Sweet … Continue reading

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LIVE REVIEW: Rise Against – Asbury Park, New Jersey July 31st 2021

Rise Against - Asbury Park, NJ July 31st 2021 | Photo Credit: Andris Jansons


Hello friends. Let me start by saying this not about the music. It has been a while since we have experienced what would be called as a normal life. Some time ago we were still confined to restrictions and directives how to live, now we are starting to get some sense of the life as we knew it. Nothing says more that we are free to live now, as being cramped in the crowd of a thousand people having a few beers, screaming, singing, and moshing during the concert. For me this show is the first after the pandemic, and what a feeling it is!


While some shows in the Northeast US have been happening since mid-July, the concert season is just kicking into the full gear now. For the legendary New Jersey rock music venue, The Stone Pony this is the first show of the season. Their summer stage has already scheduled a slate of big ticket shows that will run all the way into the month of October.

Outspoken punk rock band Rise Against is touring this summer in support of their latest album Nowhere Generation, that was released this year on June 4th. They are supported in this tour by American punk rock Descendents, who have been rocking on and off since 1977.

Rise Against’s current lineup have been together since 2007 and have produced five of the bands nine studio albums. Tim McIlrath (lead singer, guitar), Brandon Barnes (drums), Joe Principe (bass) and Zach Blair (lead guitar) have always been involved in politics and have never shied away from having their voices heard. Their songs always touch sensitive social and political issues in the country and world. As a band that believes that a music can be a catalyst for a change, they try to speak to their listeners to embolden them to fight for a change.

Stone Pony show was their second of the tour. The night before they rocked New York City. Both shows were sold out. Band opened the set with call-to-action song The Numbers, setting up the stage for the night with their melodic yet hard hitting punk rock style. They followed up with Re-Education (Through Labor) and Satellite.

The whole show was packed with the tremendous energy on and off the stage. The band’s appeal stretches beyond your everyday punk rock fan and is inclusive of people of different walks of life, age, and music tastes. Packed venue was loud and raucous. Typical mayhem with mosh pits and crowd surfing were popular sight.

Other notable songs performed by the band were – Ready To Fall, Give It All and Prayer Of The Refugee. While for the encore the band performed Survive and arguably their most notable song written Savior.

Rise Against continues to tour the United States for another month, before participating in festivals and heading overseas.


Photos by Andris Jansons


The post LIVE REVIEW: Rise Against – Asbury Park, New Jersey July 31st 2021 appeared first on The Rockpit.

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Rebellion punk festival announce first raft of bands for 2022

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The Blues Rock Show with Caleb Johnson

Caleb Johnson joins the Blues Rock Show to discuss his new album, Mountain Mojo Vol. 1, his thoughts on rock music today, which singers he admires, plus whether his win on American Idol created a stigma around his music for rock fans.

The post The Blues Rock Show with Caleb Johnson appeared first on Blues Rock Review.

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Playlist: Sirius XM’s ‘Dark Wave’ — hosted by Slicing Up Eyeballs (8/1/21)

“Dark Wave,” hosted by Slicing Up Eyeballs’ Matt Sebastian, airs 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. Eastern every Sunday on Sirius XM satellite radio’s 1st Wave (Channel 33). The most recent two episodes also are available via Sirius XM’s On Demand service for online subscribers. Here’s the full playlist from tonight’s show.

The post Playlist: Sirius XM’s ‘Dark Wave’ — hosted by Slicing Up Eyeballs (8/1/21) appeared first on slicing up eyeballs // 80s alternative music, college rock, indie.

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LORDI Leader Gets Second COVID-19 Jab At ‘Pop-Up’ Vaccination Event

According to YLE, LORDI leader Mr. Lordi received his second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Sunday (August 1) at a “pop-up” vaccination event in his hometown of Rovaniemi, Finland. Rovaniemi is the capital of Lapland, and is known for being the “official” home town of Santa Claus, who also made an appearance at the event.

“They put a big needle in my arm, and that’s exactly why I came here. This was my second vaccine dose,” Mr. Lordi said.

The 47-year-old singer also lamented the number of tours that have had to be postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic. But he said that he hasn’t let the downtime from the road go to waste.

“There’s also good sides to all of this. It’s given us an opportunity to be creative. We’ve recorded seven albums [during the epidemic],” he said.

As of July 23, a total of 102,042 positive test results had been recorded in Finland, a country with a population of 5.5 million. Just under a thousand people died as a result of the pandemic.

As Mr. Lordi suggested, LORDI will release no less than seven new studio albums in October. The LPs will mark the first new music from LORDI since the arrival of 2020’s “Killection”, a fictional compilation album which contained songs that LORDI would have written had the band existed between the early 1970s and the mid-1990s.

Mr. Lordi previously explained how all the new music came about: “Within a week when the ‘Killectour’ was cut short in March 2020, I realized we’re gonna have to use the sudden extra time somehow. It was clear that it is the time to start planning the new album, even though ‘Killection’ was released not even two months before. I was thinking that the most boring thing we could do after ‘Killection’ is to do another basic LORDI album. And I was very much enjoying the different styles of songwriting, recording and production on ‘Killection’, but another boring idea would have been to do a part 2. Since ‘Killection’ is a fictional compilation album from a fictional back catalogue that doesn’t exist, I got the idea that the only thing that could top that is to record and release that fictional back catalogue. And until Halloween 2021 the fictional back catalogue will be no longer fictional, it actually will exist… at least for the most part. My original idea was to release 10 albums, but the label said that is insane. But seven is a number they felt that is somewhat sane, hahahaha!”

LORDI won the Eurovision Song Contest in 2006 with the song “Hard Rock Hallelujah” and remains the first and only winner from Finland in the history of the competition. Since then, the band has gone through several lineup changes. The original members who are still active with the band are Mr. Lordi and guitarist Amen.

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PAPA ROACH Teams Up With FEVER 333’s JASON AALON BUTLER, Rapper SUECO On New Single ‘Swerve’

PAPA ROACH has released a new single called “Swerve”. The track, which is a collaboration with FEVER 333 frontman Jason Aalon Butler and Los Angeles rapper Sueco, is expected to appear on PAPA ROACH‘s upcoming eleventh studio album, due next year via the band’s own record company, New Noize Records, Inc., under exclusive license to ADA.

This past May, PAPA ROACH frontman Jacoby Shaddix spoke to the FM99 WNOR radio station about the band’s decision to release its next LP through its own label. Asked how the move came about, Jacoby said: “Way back in the day when we were with DreamWorks Records — this was right after we released our album ‘Infest’ — we had this pact with this band ALIEN ANT FARM. We were, like, ‘Whoever gets signed first, let’s try to get an imprint, which is a subsidiary of the record company, where we can release music.’ And we had made good on our promise and we had a record company called New Noise Records. And this was in, like, 2001. So fast forward so many years and a few record companies later, we just released out greatest hits with Better Noise Music, and that was the last record company we were with. And we were kind of in negotiation of going, ‘All right. Are we gonna stick with this company?’ which we’ve had a lot of great success and learned a lot of great things from, and I have nothing but great things to say about them. But we were, like, ‘All right. Let’s take the temperature and go see if we have what it takes to do this on our own, do it independent.’ And so we took meetings, and we ended up with Warner/ADA, which we have our record label now of our own and we use their in-house staff to do the promo and all that kind of stuff. But we are the record company. So we’re using our knowledge over the years that we’ve accumulated with our team and ourselves to take the reins and run with this one ourselves. And it’s very exciting. It’s kind of scary. ‘Cause you don’t know. But guess what? I just feel like we can’t fail.”

He continued: “You know when your gut tells you something? I just go, we’ve been doing this; we know a lot; we know what our fans want; we know what we want; we know that we are inspired; we know that we are passionate; and we know we’ve got a fanbase that loves us. Let’s do this. And we have a great relationship with radio too. I mean, we just had another No. 1 on rock radio — after 20-plus years of being in the format. And I go, ‘You know what? I think we can do this.’ And so we made the jump. And so P-ROACH, we’ve got New Noise Records back up and running.”

Regarding what’s involved in releasing album without the participation of an outside record company, Jacoby said: “After this call with you, I get on with the band and we’re wrapping on creative calls to finish up the artwork for the album and getting ready for the photos shoots and all that kind of stuff. It’s been cool, man. It’s a different — I guess — creative progression of making an album. You get the music, but then we talk about marketing, we’re talking about music videos, imaging, photo shoots, different ways of packaging the album — all that kind of fun stuff, that’s what we’re in the middle of now. And I really enjoy that; it’s a fun process. And it’s cool to just dream some stuff up, and we then we build it and we make it and it happens, and I really love that process.”

In January, a snippet of a brand new PAPA ROACH song called “Stand Up” was included in commercial for Ultimate Fighting Championship‘s (UFC) partnership with ESPN.

PAPA ROACH‘s second greatest-hits collection, “Greatest Hits Vol. 2: The Better Noise Years”, was released on March 19 on Better Noise Music.

“Greatest Hits Vol. 2 – The Better Noise Years” includes 12 of the band’s top 10 hits released between 2010 to 2019 as well as three previously unreleased remixes and two unreleased acoustic recordings recorded live at the YouTube Studios in New York City.

PAPA ROACH‘s latest album, “Who Do You Trust?”, was released in January 2019. The disc was produced by Nick “RAS” Furlong and Colin Cunningham except for the song “Top Of The World”, which is helmed by Jason Evigan.

In December, PAPA ROACH released a five-song EP, “20/20”, featuring “new takes on old jams,” including “Last Resort” and “Scars”.

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DAVE MUSTAINE Shares Brutal New Riff From Upcoming MEGADETH Album

Dave Mustaine has shared another song snippet from MEGADETH‘s upcoming album.

The MEGADETH leader offered a brief preview of the track at the end of a promotional video for his account on Cameo, which lets users hire celebrities to record brief, personalized video messages about virtually any topic. Check out the punishing new riff starting at the 22-second mark in the YouTube clip below.

Earlier in the week, Mustaine revealed in a Cameo message that MEGADETH‘s long-awaited sixteenth studio album is “almost done.” He added: “I’m just listening to the last little bits right now. Kiko‘s [Loureiro, guitar] stuff is all done. We should be turning this in any day now. We’ve been turning in individual songs, and right now it’s down to just approving the last couple of songs. So, keep your fingers crossed and hold your breath. It won’t be long till there’s a new MEGADETH record.”

Last month, Mustaine confirmed that the new MEGADETH album will be titled “The Sick, The Dying And The Dead”.

Dave previously floated “The Sick, The Dying And The Dead” as a “tentative” title for the new MEGADETH disc during a January 2021 Zoom chat with fans.

Mustaine has yet to reveal who played bass on the new MEGADETH album after David Ellefson‘s tracks were removed from the LP following his dismissal from the band in late May.

Ellefson laid down his bass tracks on MEGADETH‘s sixteenth LP in May 2020 at a studio in Nashville, Tennessee. A short time later, he raved about his performance on the record, telling the 96.7 KCAL-FM radio program “Wired In The Empire” that his musical chemistry with MEGADETH drummer Dirk Verbeuren was comparable to the interplay between Geddy Lee and Neil Peart on classic RUSH albums. “I feel like on the new MEGADETH record, me and Dirk have those same moments,” he said. “It’s MEGADETH — it’s not RUSH, obviously — but in the field of what we do, there were these moments that I was just going, ‘Oh, my God.’ This is me as a kid going, ‘This is my Geddy/Neil moment right here.'”

Last month, Mustaine announced during an episode of his Gimme Radio program “The Dave Mustaine Show” that Ellefson‘s bass tracks would not be used on the new MEGADETH LP.

“I just wanna thank you for all the kinds words and support as we get ready for this next tour and continue to hunt for a new bass player,” the MEGADETH leader said. “We are making progress. The record’s being completed, and we’re gonna have someone coming in in a couple of weeks to replace the bass tracks that we had. Which should be relatively quick because the person we’re talking to is a stellar bass player. And hopefully this will be an ongoing thing after the recording. Or we will find someone prior to the recording that will be our permanent guy going forward.”

In early May, on the same day that sexually tinged messages and explicit video footage involving Ellefson were posted on Twitter, he released a statement on Instagram denying all social media chatter that he “groomed” an underage fan. He also filed a report with the police department in Scottsdale, Arizona alleging unlawful distribution of sexually explicit images of Ellefson by unknown offenders. In the report, Ellefson admitted that he had been exchanging sexual text messages with a Dutch teenager, who captured a video of several of their virtual “masturbating encounters” without his consent and shared them with friends. (According to Ellefson, the woman was 19 at the time of their first virtual sexual encounter.) The 56-year-old Ellefson, who lives in Scottsdale, first became aware of the video on May 9, when the claim “David Ellefson of MEGADETH is a pedophile” appeared on Instagram. Ellefson told police he was notified on May 14 by MEGADETH that the band would be parting ways with him. Three days later, he was fired.

On May 24, Mustaine — who formed MEGADETH with Ellefson in 1983 — announced the bassist’s departure from the band, saying, “We do not take this decision lightly. While we do not know every detail of what occurred, with an already strained relationship, what has already been revealed now is enough to make working together impossible moving forward,” Mustaine wrote. Two days later, Ellefson released a follow-up statement in which he vowed to file a “defamation lawsuit” against the person who “illegally posted a very private video” of the bassist and made “false allegations” against him. He also said he was working with the police in Scottsdale “in their investigation into charges regarding revenge pornography to be filed against the person who posted the video. This person will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” Ellefson wrote. He went on to say that he was “taking this time to be with my family” and wished his “bandmates” the best with their upcoming tour.

MEGADETH is currently scheduled to take part in “The Metal Tour Of The Year” with LAMB OF GOD, beginning on August 20 in Austin.

Ellefson was in MEGADETH from the band’s inception in 1983 to 2002, and again from 2010 until his latest departure.

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EP review: Insurgent – Sentient

Formed in 2019 in Birmingham, where the band’s members were all studying at BIMM, Insurgent have crafted a debut release that’s every bit as powerful and energising as their moniker. Across six breathless songs, the band – vocalist Kate Teitge, guitarist Joe Rowley, bassist Jake Brette and drummer Mike Tabone – have marked themselves as some of the brightest new lights in the UK metal scene.

Infusing soaring melodies and chugging power chords with proggy tendencies, the six songs on this EP are emotive and intelligent in equal measure. They’re all written from the point of view of a God-like figure, through which the band offer their perspective on what it means to be both human and alive. It’s certainly a lofty concept, but thanks to Kate’s commanding, bombastic vocals and the band’s impressive technical proficiency, they pull it off, all the while ensuring the emotion of these songs isn’t lost to either the ideas at the heart of them or the band’s virtuoso abilities. 

Opener Zero Sum is exhilarating – a constant crescendo with a symphonic metal edge that leads into the gloomier, moodier but not less enthralling Counterpart, which itself builds into a rousing, raging conclusion. The jittery rhythms of Dogma aren’t quite so compelling, but the two songs that follow – the pulverising ebb and flow of Colours Bleed and the tense, insistent riffs of Eclipse – soon get things back on track. 

It all comes to a close with the more nuanced, tender strains of My Sentence Awaits. Billed as a spiritual reflection and criticism’ of that God-like figure, it rounds off the concept with a knowing, self-aware flourish. But you don’t need to necessarily buy into the themes if you don’t want – these songs more than stand their own ground without. It all makes for a bold and invigorating introduction to band brimming with ideas and the talent to bring them to life. 

Verdict: 4/5

For Fans Of: Trivium, TesseracT, Alter Bridge

Sentient is self-released on August 6,

READ THIS: The 20 greatest Trivium songs – ranked

Posted on August 2nd 2021, 1:00p.m.

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Album review: THE ROLLING STONES – A Bigger Bang live on Copacabana Beach

THE ROLLING STONES - A Bigger Bang live on Copacabana BeachMercury Studios [Release date 09.07.21] Originally released on DVD in 2007, this Rolling Stones release has been remixed, re-mastered, re-edited and re-released. At the time The Stones were touring in support of their recent “A Bigger Bang” album and this … Continue reading

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