Montrose – I Got the Fire: Complete Recordings (1973-1976)

I Got the Fire Complete Recordings (1973-1976) Album Cover Art

Montrose – I Got the Fire: Complete Recordings (1973-1976)
Cherry Red Records
Release Date: 29/07/22
Review by Paul Hutchings
8/10

For many of us born in the 70s but not finding our musical roots until the 1980s, Montrose were one of those bands who were heard on rock stations thanks to covers of their music by other bands. Tunes like ‘I Got the Fire’ and ‘Space Station #5’ as well as the classic ‘Bad Motor Scooter’, which is still a favourite on the likes of Planet Rock. But now, this comprehensive collection of the band’s music allows a much deeper dive into the Montrose catalogue, and its an interesting voyage from start to finish. 

Formed in 1973, the original Montrose comprised of guitarist Ronnie Montrose and singer Sammy Hagar, bassist Bill Church and drummer Denny Carmassi. Montrose had formerly been a member of the Edgar Winter Group, playing on the hit ‘Frankenstein’ as well a being a successful session musician with credits for Van Morrison amongst others. The band’s self-titled debut is a genuine classic, and whilst it didn’t set the world alight on release in 1973, one listen to it in this collection demonstrates exactly why it has now sold over a million copies. Tracks such as ‘Rock Candy’, ‘Rock the Nation’ and of course, ‘Space Station #5’ and ‘Bad Motor Scooter’, are hard rock classics. It’s worth a listen just to hear the fluidity of the band, with Hagar bringing a defining vocal performance that would later land him the role in Van Halen, as well as huge success as a solo artist. Accompanying “Montrose” we have a selection of demo tracks as well as their debut performance for KSAN radio recorded at the Record Plant in Sausalito, California on 21st April 1973. 

The second album, “Paper Money”, saw Alan Fitzgerald replace Church, with producer Ted Templeman again at the helm. The album features similar hard rocking songs such as the riff heavy ‘The Dreamer,’ the sci-fi edge of ‘Starliner’ and of course ‘I Got the Fire,’ whilst ‘Connection’ demonstrated the softer side of the band, and echoes of Led Zeppelin. Interestingly, Montrose were sometimes called the US answer to Zeppelin, and you can see why with some flashes of musical genius and variety that match the UK behemoths at times. With additional stereo and mono singles of the title track and ‘Connection’, this is another excellent copy for the collection. Disc four sees another KSAN radio recording session with some of the debut classics featured alongside newer tracks.

1975 saw Hagar depart, due to building acrimony, and singer Bob James replaced him. Keyboardist Jim Alcivar also joined the band, bringing a wider and broader sound. “Warner Bros. Presents Montrose!” saw Ronnie Montrose taking over production duties. Whilst it may not have the instancy of the first two albums, there’s plenty of rock ‘n’ roll in evidence with the ‘Twenty Flight Rock’ bringing the jive, and James proving to be a more than capable replacement for Hagar. 

The final disc sees album number four, “Jump on It” which boasts one of the most appalling covers of all time (I’ll leave you to search for it). Alcivar brings the bottom end on the album, but only three songs feature an actual bassist with Randy Jo Hobbs filling in. It’s another solid if unspectacular release, but the guitar work is especially pleasing with some sparkling play on opener ‘Let’s Go’ as your starter for ten. ‘Music Man’ may be one of the more recognisable songs here, a slower, melodic piece which verges on ballad at times. 

This is a lovely package which showcases what a superb musician Ronnie Montrose was. He sadly took his own life a decade ago. It’s a worthy tribute to a fine guitarist and if you are curious about this influential US rock band, then this is the ideal place to start your journey. 

‘Bad Motor Scooter’ Video

TRACKLISTING:

Disc One: Montrose (1973) 
01. Rock the Nation
02. Bad Motor Scooter 
03. Space Station #5 
04. I Don’t Want It 
05. Good Rockin’ Tonight 
06. Rock Candy 
07. One Thing on My Mind 
08. Make It Last 

Bonus Tracks: 
09. Rock the Nation (mono) 
10. Rock the Nation (stereo) 
11. Space Station #5 (mono edit) 
12. Space Station #5 (stereo edit) 

Disc Two: Demos (1973) 
01. One Thing on My Mind (Demo) 
02. Shoot Us Down (Demo) 
03. Rock Candy (Demo) 
04. Good Rockin’ Tonight (Demo) 
05. I Don’t Want It (Demo) 
06. Make It Last (Demo) Live KSAN Radio Session. Record Plant, Sausalito, CA, USA 21st April 1973 
07. Intro 8 Good Rockin’ Tonight 
09. Rock Candy 
10. Bad Motor Scooter 1
11. Shoot Us Down 
12. One Thing on My Mind 
13. Rock the Nation 
14. Make It Last 
15. You’re Out of Time 
16. Roll Over Beethoven 
17. I Don’t Want It 

Disc Three: Paper Money (1974) 
01. Underground 
02. Connection 
03. The Dreamer 
04. Starliner 
05. I Got the Fire 
06. Spaceage Sacrifice 
07. We’re Going Home 
08. Paper Money 

Bonus Tracks: 
09. Paper Money (stereo edit) 
10. Paper Money (mono edit) 
11. Connection (mono edit

Disc Four: Live KSAN Radio Session, Record Plant, Sausalito, CA, USA 26th December 1974
01. Intro 
02. I Got the Fire 
03. Rock Candy
04. Bad Motor Scooter
05. Spaceage Sacrifice 
06. One and A Half 
07. Roll Over Beethoven 
08. Trouble
09. Space Station #5 

Disc Five: Warner Bros. Presents Montrose! (1975) 
01. Matriarch 
02. All I Need 
03. Twenty Flight Rock 
04. Whaler 
05. Dancin’ Feet 
06. O Lucky Man 
07. One and A Half 
08. Clown Woman 
09. Black Train 

Bonus Track: 
10. Matriarch (mono edit) 

Disc Six: Jump On It (1976) 
01. Let’s Go 
02. What Are You Waiting For? 
03. Tuft-Sedge 
04. Music Man 
05. Jump On It
06. Rich Man 
07. Crazy For You 
08. Merry Go-Round

Bonus Tracks: 
09. Music Man (stereo edit)
10. Music Man (mono edit) 
11. Let’s Go (stereo edit) 
12. Let’s Go (mono edit

LINE-UP:

Montrose
Sammy Hagar – vocals
Ronnie Montrose – Guitar
Bill Church – Bass
Denny Carmassi – Drums

Paper Money
Sammy Hagar – vocals
Ronnie Montrose – Guitar
Alan Fitzgerald – Bass
Denny Carmassi – Drums

Warner Bros. Presents Montrose!
Bob James – Vocals
Ronnie Montrose – Guitar
Alan Fitzgerald – Bass
Denny Carmassi – Drums
Jim Alcivar – Keyboards
Randy Jo Hobbs – bass

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Hutchings and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Fozzy – Boombox

Boombox Album Cover Art

Fozzy – Boombox
Mascot Records
Release Date: 06/05/22
Running Time: 46:19
Review by Simon Black
8/10

For a band that started as a bit of fun from a chap who like covering Ozzy’s songs, Fozzy (geddit?) have really evolved into a credible and truly formidable Rock outfit. Annoyingly I’ve managed to miss most of their sets the last couple of times they’ve graced Bloodstock, but what I saw on the tail end of both was a band on fire, an audience mainlining energy and a natural born frontman in Chris Jerico loving every darned minute of it. The last time round I made the effort to get hold of a copy of “Judas”, and since then must confess to being something of a convert.

That energy and sensibility Jericho oozes on stage flows vibrantly and equally into the studio presentations and in that resepct “Boombox” picks up where “Judas” left off. This time round there’s a bit more Melodic Hard Rock sensibility, rather than the slightly more edgy and street feel of its predecessor, but it nevertheless manages to pack a considerable punch despite opting for a subtly more commercial feel. The reason for this is simple – punchy, effective and well-written songs convincingly delivered.

OK, the retro AOR ballad ‘Army Of One’ jars a little, as Fozzy are at their best when there’s a little danger in the mix – and this is way too radio safe, but that said its nice hearing Jericho singing that cleanly and reminds one just how much range he actually has. Tracks like the bouncing ‘Sane’, the more evenly paced but slab-like ‘Ugly On The Inside’ work because they have that distinctive Fozzy energy, but deliver it in measured slabs. Balancing this is a strong, reverb rich and fat 80’s production sound, which borders on the Synthwave. This becomes most extreme with the cover of Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s ‘Relax’, which despite a bit more double bass drumming is in no way a heavy version of the song at all. It’s a bit of a mis-fire to be fair and lets the overall flow of the record down somewhat.

Generally the songs balance between these two points, with the catchy bouncy and distinctive rhythms and riffs Fozzy deliver so well, counterpointed with a fat retro feel, with a little Modern Metal sensibility in there for good measure. With a few more like the more familiar style of ‘What Hell Is Like’ and ‘Omen’ in the mix, this would have sounded more traditionally like their back catalogue, but then after eight studio albums you need to mix things up a bit.

The album title is meant to evoke that fat sound of the 80’s and does it very well, as does the lavishly rich production sound, but for my money the more street and edgy feel of this album’s predecessor wins out. That said, the back end of the record is going to be what the established fans want to hear if they can just let the more commercial bits wash over them. Despite that, I suspect this album has the potential to win a way larger audience, which is no doubt exactly what it was intended to do. It’s still going to rip the audience a new one when played loud and live, so still works for my money.

‘Sane’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Sane
02. I Still Burn
03. Purifier
04. Army Of One
05. Ugly On The Inside
06. Relax (Frankie Goes To Hollywood)
07. Nowhere To Run
08. My Great Wall
09. What Hell Is Like
10. Omen
11. The Worst Is Yet To Come
12. The Vulture Club

LINE-UP:
Chris Jericho – Vocals
Rich Ward – Guitars, Vocals
Grant Brooks – Drums
Billy Grey – Guitars
PJ Farley – Bass

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Warrior Soul – Out On Bail

Out On Bail Album Cover Art

Warrior Soul – Out On Bail (after being sentenced to imprisonment for crimes against music)
Livewire/ Cargo Records UK
Release Date: 04.03.22
Running Time: Too bastard long (33:36)
Review by Dark Juan
Score: Just don’t fucking bother, OK? The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System doesn’t go below -10,000,000/10. It’s been broken. Thaaaaaanks, Warrior Soul.

There are times I think that fate is out to get me. Whether it was the black Vauxhall Astra that tried T-boning me from a side-street this morning, provoking what can only be described as a sage and responsible and polite exchange of views with the “driver” of it or the fact that the august and otherwise sensible Beth “You’ll Pay For Your Crimes In Whatever Manner I See Fit, You Massive Twat” Jones assigned me this pile of foetid rat wank to review, it does sometimes feel that Dark Juan is on to a bit of a loser. However, Dark Juan is not cowed by poor fortune (and a VERY poor monetary fortune) and has risen above the horror of the past 48 hours at work (one of my young gentlemen refused to be effectively wrangled and also refused to understand just why a 1922 Chateau Yquem is an excellent accompaniment to a meat course, leading to a disagreement that lasted several hours and some mild bruising on my part. He’s from an affluent area and INSISTS on addressing me as “Blood” or “Fam”, or even more horrifically, “Famalam”. I am NO-ONE’S fucking famalam and I am not from fucking Tower bastard Hamlets. I am in fact excruciatingly white and Northern) to bring you this exquisitely crafted review of… sigh… Warrior bloody Soul.

Warrior Soul. A band that released a passable record in the early Nineties and appear to have been fooled into thinking that the difficult second album can be put off indefinitely by releasing hare-brained, turgid, “gritty” rock and roll platters on a regular basis, with vocals (I hesitate to call it singing) from a man who looks like he should live on a low-rent Florida trailer park and sounds like the Marlboro Red habit is going to cause health issues to him very soon. He also writes lyrics that are fucking stuck in hair metal heaven, chock full of bone-headed sex and meaningless, unimpressive swaggering. Kory, drugs ain’t fucking cool and when you’re a fifty-something man who performs (judging by the EPK picture I have of him) in a pair of trousers BADLY in need of repair, you frankly just make yourself look like a bit of a tit. In fact, you’re the kind of man who teenage Dark Juan used to mock and revile in Jilly’s Rockworld back in the Nineties. The old one who would be wearing tight blue Levi jeans, and the original Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow t-shirt, barely covering their expanding paunch and still trying to get off with the young ladies who were obviously and vocally repulsed by them. Drug references and howling about how rock and roll you are so fucking out of date it’s nearly as cringeworthy as being called “Famalam” by a white teenager whose home village has a fucking Rolls-Royce dealership in the middle of it. Especially when you’re old enough to be someone’s fucking grandad. Grow up, lad. 

Surprisingly, there is a passable song on “Out On Bail” (even the fucking title of the album is so banal it has made my nose bleed), ruined only by the cracked and damaged vocals of Kory Clarke and that song is ‘End Of The World’ – which rattles along quite nicely on a grungy sort of a vibe, with lyrics that eschew the normal drink / drugs / shagging / any combination of the three subject matter that dear old Kory normally employs. Clearly a moment of clarity was had and the lyrics are timely and accurate, especially around the current unpleasantness in the world. However, Kory undoes all the good work he’s done with this song by coming up with the fucking GEM of a lyric I have reproduced below:

“I’ll meet you in the lobby.
Someone’s done all the coke again,
Or maybe it was a robbery… yeah…”

Oh my good lord, Satan. I heard that lyric and physically felt my IQ drop into some kind of extra-dimensional black hole. Then I went and beat a child to get rid of the rage I felt after having my intelligence insulted so gravely. Then I called everyone “Fam” for several hours because it was that stupendously dumb and it had reduced my mental capacity to that of a white boy thinking he’s a grime rapper and from da streetz, when he actually comes from Ascot. This was from the second track in, entitled ‘One More For The Road’. Of course it is…

Disclaimer: I didn’t actually beat a child. Or anything.

Can I also point out that Kory Clarke doesn’t appear to be able to vocalise (I’m still not calling it singing) in tune? ‘Yo-Yo’ (correctly hyphenated) being a classic example of this as he caterwauls brokenly through multiple keys and basically turns the ears of the unfortunate listener to minced meat. “The New Paradigm” also shows this off to good advantage, being a particularly (and spectacularly) shit power ballad where Kory gets serious after putting down the Jack Daniels and running out of cocaine and whores. Regular readers of my bullshit will know that I have an extreme and deep-seated hatred of power ballads, viewing them as filler at best and having a rigid system of belief about them (‘18 And Life’ by Skid Row is the second best power ballad ever written, after Heart’s ‘Alone’ mainly because they don’t have the glorious voice that Ann Wilson has) and that they are a transparent and obvious attempt at a lighter waving hit chant-a-long record or the long suffering spouse of the rock star has finally had enough of the heroin binges, endless parties and all-encompassing egotism and fucked off with that nice Spanish gardener, Enrique, who works hard, isn’t a has-been waste of space in dodgy trousers, doesn’t have a drug habit and a face like it’s been hit by a poorly parked Volkswagen, and is generally kind and attentive and not a swaggering dickhead, therefore prompting a lament for their lost love. Or in the case of Tenacious D, the Metal. Thankfully, ‘The New Paradigm’ was the last song and I don’t have to listen to it anymore. Mrs Dark Juan has been vastly amused by my physical cringing as I managed to tick off even more boxes on the rock and roll cliché bingo I always play with myself when I listen to Warrior Soul. 

Mention of jail – Check.
Drug references – Check.
Surviving – Fucking Check.
Living the lifestyle of rock and roll – Oh, yes. Checkety check check.
Being on the road – Yawn. Check.
Extraneous “Baby” in the lyrics– Yes, indeed. Check-a-rama, baby.

BONUS ROUND! – “Yeah!” – Liberal checking going on right now!

Even the opening song on this record is poor as fuck. ‘We’re Alive’ starts with the tolling of a bell (for the remnants of my sanity as it was compromised severely after a mere one minute and forty-one seconds) before an ill-timed riff has absolutely fuck-all to do with the drumming until the rest of the band pull themselves together and start playing properly. The band aren’t too bad, though and they are very poorly served by their, ahem… vocalist. Because he can’t FUCKING SING!!!!!

The production on the album is also exactly as previous Warrior Soul releases. I knew just from the sound of it that Kory Clarke produced the fucking thing. His ruined, excruciating voice is massively forward in the mix to the detriment of EVERYONE ELSE and the guitars far, far too low. At least the drums and bass are audible and snappy, but I rather think that was by accident rather than by design. The blurb that came with this… product, claims that Kory Clarke is one of rock’s “Most prolific, prophetic and controversial songwriters”. He really isn’t. “Put your hands together, because we’re rocking out” is a sample of the quality of controversy on offer, unless you class lyrics that Poison would have rejected for being outdated and misogynist in 1990 as controversial, and they wrote ‘Unskinny Bop’. Neither is he a fucking prophet. He’s a fucking dinosaur. Wading through a sea of retarded sexuality, singing about drugs and booze and pretending you’re hard aren’t controversial. It makes you sound like a fucking colossal knobjockey. This kind of misguided toxic masculinity just makes me want to puke and it cheapens the music I have given my life to listening to. We have come so much further than where Warrior Soul are still.

It really upsets me that ‘End Of The World’ is on this album because it is a good song and I’d be excited if that was the basis of Warrior Soul’s sound. But it isn’t. The well-worn rock cliché show just keeps on coming back and Clarke’s vocal on ‘Yo-Yo’ is particularly unpleasant when he’s trying to hold notes on the pre-chorus. He wobbles all over the fucking place and is screamingly off-key and… and… and…

I’ve run out of words. I want to kill this record’s siblings in a curiously misplaced act of vengeance for ever having heard it. I hate it on a molecular level. I even listened to it twice, dear, valued readers, to make sure it wasn’t my prejudices talking. It wasn’t. Warrior Soul are truly, desperately shite.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System cannot be fucking arsed because it knew exactly what was going to happen within twenty-seven seconds of the opening song starting. It refuses to give Warrior Soul a score that doesn’t make a mockery of the Ever-Metal.com scoring system. Thank fuck there is ample booze in the house to blot out the horror via the medium of medicinal drinking.

Dark Juan and The Blood Splat Rating System do agree with Kory Clarke on one thing, you’ll be surprised to know, and that is that we all share a desire to see the destruction of the GOP. Especially with that fucking mangled apricot hellbeast Trump involved with it.

TRACKLISTING:
01. We’re Alive (For the love of God, no)
02. One More For The Road (For some reason this title keeps reminding me of Boz Scaggs’ “Lido Shuffle”)
03. Hip Hip Hurray (I left the horrible spelling intact even though it should be hooray. Yes, I am a grammar Nazi.)
04. Out On Bail (I really wish they weren’t by this point of the record)
05. Cancelled Culture (I still can’t work out whether Kory is feeling cancelled or he is lamenting culture being eradicated because of cancel culture)
06. End Of The World (I wish it would fucking hurry up, right now)
07. Yo-Yo (Wasn’t this a female rapper signed to East West Records ages ago?)
08. The New Paradigm (Ah, brings back memories of good old Warzone 2100 on the PC, back in the day)

LINE-UP:
Kory Clarke – Vocals, Drums on ‘One More For The Road’Dennis ‘El Guapo’ Post – Guitars
Christian Kimmett – Bass
Ivan Tambac – Drums on ‘The New Paradigm’, ‘End Of The World’
John Besser – Drums on ‘We’re Alive’, ‘Hip Hip Hurray’, ‘Out On Bail’, ‘Cancelled Culture’, ‘Yo-Yo’
John ‘Baby H’ Hodgson – Guitars on ‘Out On Bail’
Adam Arling – Guitars on ‘We’re Alive’, ‘The New Paradigm’
John ‘Full Throttle’ Polachek – Guitars on ‘One More For The Road’, ‘Cancelled
Culture’
Maria Hatzina – Special Guest Vocals on ‘Hip Hip Hurray’

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of ‘Dark Juan’ and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Faster Pussycat – Babylon: The Elektra Years (1987-1992)

Babylon The Elektra Years 1987-1992 Album Cover Art

Faster Pussycat – Babylon: The Elektra Years (1987-1992)
Cherry Red Records
Release Date: 28/01/22
Running Time: 03:44:12
Review by Simon Black
Faster Pussycat 8/10
Wake Me When It’s Over 9/10

Live And Rare 5/10
Whipped! 6/10
Overall – 7/10

Listening to this set of disks is like a time bomb from another life. The scary thing is that it’s my own…

When I first started listening to heavier music circa 1987 bands like this were my gateway. At the time teenage me missed a seminal show at my home town of Nottingham’s Rock City with Faster Pussycat opening and an at that point completely unknown fellow act from the L.A. Sunset Strip scene headlining (Guns and something or other). Attendees who weren’t too spotty to get past the biker bouncers related that Faster Pussycat were, to say the least, something of an eye opener that night – not least for the rather key fact that Pussycat (as the support act) blew the somewhat out of it Guns ’N’ Roses off  the stage (although to be fair that’s probably because of the somewhat earlier opening times bands had to work with due to UK’s very backward licencing laws in 1987, they simply had not time to get as fucked up as the headliners by the time they needed to perform. The eponymous debut album that opens this set really has encapsulated the time capsule feel of that era, perhaps helped by the fact that unlike G’n’R, I haven’t listened to it or any of its successors for several decades.

Time has not been kind to Sleaze of this era, which is where these guys firmly sit on their debut. Ignoring for the moment the scene’s contribution to the hole in the ozone layer, there is the fact that although down and dirty lyrics might have appealed to my teenage schoolboy self at the time, they really have not stood the test of time well. Sexism and the objectification of women of the kind that so many acts of this time were guilty of is quite frankly up there with the casual racism on TV in the 80’s as something best forgotten, as thankfully we have moved on. Faster Pussycat dipped their toes in this dirty and shallow end of the pool, but to be fair are far less worse than the crudity of some of their peers, but at least kept some semblance of subtlety through their use of double entendre. Either way, it’s the part that jars now, although to be fair only a couple of songs suffer from it and fortunately the delivery in its wrapper of punchy Rock’n’Roll and low slung guitars still feels fresh and raw as it did back then. The choice of title for this box set comes from the 80’s floor-filler ‘Babylon’ from that first album – a brash statement about the craziness of the Sunset Strip, wrapped up in a less than subtle poke at some of the other musical genres of the time (not that anyone remembers The Beastie Boys), but it encapsulates my memories of the band and this debut record. It’s not only their best known song, it’s a statement, but with the wink and a nudge that underlies everything they did in their early years.

A couple of years later, with the scene still riding high ‘Wake Me When It’s Over’ landed. It’s still Faster Pussycat, but it’s a musically much stronger record with much more going on in the arrangements, playing honed from many graveyard opening slots around the globe and a wealth of story material to feed the lyrics. The songs are all way longer than the ten times three and a half minutes of “Wham! Bang! Thank you, Ma’am” of the debut and although it’s still Rock ’N’ Roll, there’s more overt Blues overtones, some great guitar weaving interplay jams and the addition of a honky-tonk pianos, harmonicas and saxophone breaks into the mix making this feel a much more well-crafted and structured beast than its brash predecessor and singer Taime Downe (yes, really) sounds a million times better having learned to use his voice and phrasing to good effect with experience. 

Stylistically as well there’s more on offer here, with the most memorable song from this period being the soulful ballad ‘House of Pain’ which really has aged far better than anything on their first record. That said, even the songs that hark back a couple of years, like ‘Slip Of The Tongue’ are far better crafted than anything from the starting point. The subject matter is still sleazy as hell, but it’s not as immature and reflects a lifestyle of a band used to the edgy craziness of the road rather than the schoolboy smut of before. I remember seeing the band this time round, this time graduated to headline status and more than capable of holding an audience. This album sold better than anything else they wrote to boot (mainly off of the back of ‘House of Pain’), but also from the invaluable experience spent grinding the arena and stadia aisles on support slots with Kiss and Mötley Crüe. This is probably as good as it got for these chaps, with the band at the peak of both their popularity and in terms of the quality of their output, which it tightly delivered and aged way better than where they started from. 

The third disk is a filler EP and a relic of the days when re-issuing the same material with coloured vinyl or different covers, different mixes and edits was a crucial part of a business focussed on selling physical pieces of plastic to people, ideally more than once (for the benefit of millennials, this was the dark ages before we had the internet when ‘instant messaging’ involved two tin cans and a piece of string). With only a couple of remixes and live tracks from this period on here (and although hearing Downe’s frankly insane delivery of the live version of ‘Babylon’ was a bit of an eye opener), it’s not adding much to the story so I will move on to what turned out to be the dénouement for this incarnation of the band.

Whipped! however sounds like it’s been made by a completely different band. The line-up was still more or less the same apart from a change on the drum stool necessitated by Mark Michals’ being caught by the fuzz for signing for a parcel delivery of heroin whilst on tour in the mid-West, but the sound is moving away from the Sleaze (as indeed had the whole world at this point) and started to bring some Industrial elements to the mix at a couple of points. If you add in the lyrical obsession with S&M, this feels like its warming up the market for Trent Reznor and Marilyn Manson rather than continuing the cheekiness of the first two albums. The album really lacks an identity of its own and effectively stifle the richness of songwriting that we had in their last studio album, which felt like a controlled Rock ’n’ Roll jam and although it’s an interesting foretaste of evolutions in the scene to come, it fails for simply not being either a Faster Pussycat album or enough of a jump into new genres. The market was ready for starker change and their fan base hated it, so not long after and after a bit more line-up churn the party fizzled out and they called it a day in 1993. 

There was the inevitable reboot a few decades later of course, but with only Downe remaining and no one else to rein in his Industrial obsession it didn’t really register. In addition (thanks to the American judicial system’s flawed view that its acceptable for two different versions of an act to compete in the same diminishing marketplace until one survives in a bizarre game of musical Highlander) you also now have founding guitarist Brent Muscat (along with others from the original line-up) competing in parallel with a version of the act that’s more retrospective to their heyday. Having listened to the whole set ‘Wake Me When It’s Over’ feels most likely the album that is worthy of further consideration and stands the test of time better than the rest, but it’s clear that they are never going to come back from the past as anything other than their own tribute act, regardless of whether one version wins out or pride is swallowed. As a time capsule this is fascinating though, particularly as these recordings have clearly been shown a lot of love in the repackaging and remixing process, sounding way more consistent in sound quality and mix calibre than any of the originals could. They were good old days, but they have definitely gone…

TRACKLISTING:
Disc One: Faster Pussycat
01. Don’t Change That Song
02. Bathroom Wall
03. No Room For Emotion
04. Cathouse
05. Babylon
06. Smash Alley
07. Shooting You Down
08. City Has No Heart
09. Ship Rolls In
10. Bottle In Front Of Me

Disc Two: Wake Me When It’s Over
01. Where There’s A Whip, There’s A Way
02. Little Dove
03. Poison Ivy
04. House Of Pain
05. Gonna Walk
06. Pulling Weeds
07. Slip Of The Tongue
08. Cryin’ Shame
09. Tattoo
10. Ain’t No Way Around It
11. Arizona Indian Doll
12. Please Dear

Disc Three: Live And Rare
01. Bathroom Wall
02. Poison Ivy
03. Pulling Weeds
04. Slip Of The Tongue
05. Babylon
06. House Of Pain

Disc Four: Whipped!
01. Nonstop To Nowhere
02. The Body Thief
03. Jack The Bastard
04. Big Dictionary
05. Madam Ruby’s Love Boutique
06. Only Way Out
07. Maid In Wonderland
08. Friends
09. Cat Bash
10. Loose Booty
11. Mr. Lovedog
12. Out With A Bang

Bonus Tracks
13. Nonstop To Nowhere (CHR Version)
14. Too Tight
15. Charge Me Up
16. You’re So Vain

LINE-UP:
Taime Downe – Lead Vocals
Greg Steele – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Brent Muscat – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Eric Stacy – Bass Guitar, Backing Vocals
Mark Michals – Drums, Backing Vocals (disks 1-3)
Brett Bradshaw – Drums, Percussion, Backing Vocals (Disk 4)

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s With PISTOLS AT DAWN

Pistols At Dawn Logo

EMQ’s With PISTOLS AT DAWN

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview, with Atlanta, Georgia based Hard Rock band, Pistols At Dawn. Huge thanks to drummer Adam Jaffe, for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Adam Jaffe, drummer.

Pistols At Dawn is an American professional rock band formed in 2015 by drummer Adam Jaffe, guitarist Devin White, guitarist Mike Buffa, and bassist Billy Sullivan. Virtuoso guitarist Buffa died tragically in 2018, and the band reunited with incendiary guitarist Tommy Richardson in 2019 with its first worldwide releases in early 2020. Vocals are led by elite Frontman and former VH1 Rockstar Supernova finalist Chris Pierson.

Pistols at Dawn released 3 new singles and videos in 2020, ‘Cold’, ‘Gauntlet’ and ‘All You Offer’. The singles were recorded/engineered by famed producer Jeff Tomei (Smashing Pumpkins/Matchbox 20) at Cock the Walk Studio in Atlanta, GA. Pistols At Dawn entered the studio again in mid-2020 and wrapped up its new EP “Nocturnal Youth” with Producer Jeff Tomei and “Faith No More” Mastering Guru Maor Appelbaum.

Pistols At Dawn is a high energy, heavy hitting, heart pumping, radio ready hard rock band with lyrics and visuals of the times pushing the listener not to accept the status quo. PAD has been compared to a combination of Godsmack, Breaking Benjamin, Shinedown, Tool, AC/DC, Metallica, Disturbed and other universal hard rock acts, while retaining a uniquely electric, powerful, and vintage sound singular to Pistols At Dawn.

How did you come up with your band name?

I came up with the band name after seeing a bunch of movies where people would challenge each other to shooting duels in order to protect their honour, and they would always call out “pistols at dawn!” and I just always remembered that, so I pitched that to the band and everybody loved it.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We’re from the South-eastern United States, from Atlanta, GA more specifically. The rock and metal scene is huge down in the Southern States. Many of the biggest hard rock and metal acts come from the southeast and there are a gazillion tours that flow through. Atlanta has always had a thriving rock and metal scene with bands such as Sevendust and Mastodon and we hope to be the next big act out of the south.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

Our latest release is the “Nocturnal Youth” EP (www.smarturl.it/StreamNocturnalYouth). The EP released in the US in early May and releases in the UK in late July. Our latest video is for ‘Voices’!

‘Voices’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

My greatest influences are Steven Adler (Guns N’ Roses), Will Calhoun (Living Colour), Steven Perkins (Jane’s Addiction), Lars Ulrich (Metallica), Neil Pert (Rush), Joey Kramer (Aerosmith), and Morgan Rose (Sevendust)!

The band’s top influences are Pantera, Slayer, Tool, Killswitch Engage, Metallica, Led Zeppelin.

What first got you into music?

My best friend had a band when we were little kids and I would watch them rehearse. He asked me if I wanted to get on the drums and play one day. ‘What It Takes’ by Aerosmith was on the radio…he showed me some basic playing and I was able to do it naturally. I was hooked, and I had to be in a rock band. I took two years of lessons with a top pro and joined a band as soon as I possibly could.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician, who would it be?

We would love to have Eminem do a feature on one of our tracks, and it would be pretty cool to have Amy Lee from Evanescence to do a feature with us.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Download Festival in Europe because it is the quintessential gig for every aspiring metal artist. It would be a dream come true. We hope to be at Donington next summer.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

A nasty worn pair of panties.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Get ready for a marathon because we are gonna be around for a really long time.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

John Bonham.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

The best thing about being a musician is being in a band. There’s nothing like the magic we can create when we have a mix of the right people.

Business decisions within a band can make things stressful sometimes.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

I would change the way the record labels contract with their artists so that artists would be more financially successful.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Metallica – “Black Album”

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

It’s always awesome to hear a band on Vinyl.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

A packed outdoor festival in Atlanta.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

There is no other option than to play music.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Robert Plant, Sully Erna, James Hetfield, Mick Jagger, and Slash.

What’s next for the band?

We recently announced a four show series to thank our supporters for their dedication through the pandemic and to basically say farewell to Covid. We’re giving them a free series of shows in at least 4 different cities in the United States as a big thank you and to celebrate making it through the insanity. Our first show of that series will be in Atlanta on 18/9/2021. We have also signed on for a food bank benefit with Atlanta’s main rock station and will be performing 13/11/2021. We are currently working on additional shows and touring for the new year. We are also tracking our new album in July and it will be ready in the late fall.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

www.pistolsatdawnband.com
www.facebook.com/PistolsAtDawnBand
www.instagram.com/pistolsatdawnofficial/
www.smarturl.it/StreamVoicesNow
www.youtube.com/channel/UCUh-gegH1rkEIePrCIX-KwA
www.open.spotify.com/artist/49BPg2vDSF1bWsH0zUnNSz

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

We’re American, and we’ve never had or seen one, but we can’t wait to try one and answer this question down the road!

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

We are grateful for the feature and look forward to touring in your neck of the woods.

Pistols At Dawn Promo Pic1

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

INTERVIEW WITH GEARS

See Me Single Cover Art

INTERVIEW WITH GEARS
Hard Rock Coming Out Of Miami
By Stephanie Stevens

Miami, FL has a hidden gem in the hard rock band GEARS. They indulge you with a heavy, groove laden, melody driven sound that will be a game changer for active rock radio.

The band just recently released a killer new track called ‘SEE ME’. A song that delivers a message along with solid melodic, rock attributes. The more I work with up ‘n’ coming bands, the more I love that they are putting some thought into their message and lyrical content in 2021.

Bands like GEARS have a huge platform to help people who might think they are alone or having a struggle with something in their lives and GEARS seem to want to get solid messages out to the world. Just take a listen to the new single. ‘SEE ME’. As band member Tripp Six explains, “is being wise enough to know that one’s expectations influence their perceptions. What we believe to be true about someone or a situation may be our perspective and not the actual reality” and that is just a powerful statement and is something everyone should think about.

With a knack for songwriting along with that monster sound of pure rock n roll and a live show that has been described as high energy and impactful GEARS has all the traits to be a force to be reckoned with in the Rock world.

I had a chance to speak with drummer Jimmy Wooten and found out how he views the Miami music scene, how they have impacted the local community, working with Corey Lowery and what made the bands influences such a motivating factor to them!

Q: Who are GEARS and what does your band bring to the table when it comes to sound and meaning?

JW: GEARS is a Hard Rock band from Miami, FL that just tries to write great, groove-based songs with an edge. We pair that with a high-energy stage show that engages the audience and makes them want to give their energy back.

Q: You guys are from Miami, FL what inspires you about the scene you have in the area?

JW: South Florida has a great rock and metal scene. I often think that its talent is overlooked and undervalued. There’s a certain attitude that is inspiring to me personally in the music that comes out of the area. It’s something that isn’t necessarily easy to explain, but I feel like when you see it at a show, you know it.

Q: What is one thing you think you have helped with being a band in the scene that has improved or made attention to the area or local community?

JW: We have done multiple fundraising/donations to organizations that mean a lot to us. A couple of examples from the recent past would be exclusive Merch items that benefited those that were devastated by the hurricanes in Puerto Rico. We also did an exclusive T-Shirt sale that benefited CASA, Court Appointed Special Advocates for abused and neglected children. We not only donated the proceeds from the shirt sales but also matched the amount that was sold. This was done to help raise funds during the pandemic as they couldn’t do any of their normal fundraising events.

Q: Your new single ‘SEE ME’; has a great message. What do you hope people walk away with after hearing it?

JW: I personally hope that the vibe and attitude of the song empower people to see someone or a situation for what they really are, rather than what they want them to be. From that, to have the courage to eliminate the toxicity from their lives in order to not let anyone negatively affect them.

Q: How was it working with Corey Lowery and what was the biggest thing he taught you guys about songwriting, finishing touches on a track, and the music industry as a whole?

JW: Corey is a great friend and producer. He has been involved with the band since the beginning. He breaks it down so simply, “just write great songs and crush it live.” I know that sounds oversimplified, but when you say it to yourself a few times, no matter what you’re trying to do, go back to this mantra and it will keep you on track.

Q: ‘SEE ME’; Is sort of the platform single for a new EP your working on. How will the rest of this disc relate to the sound of the new single? Any branches or diversity that will be surprising to your fans at all?

JW: ‘SEE ME’ is actually the 3rd single off this EP. It’s sort of a continuation of the songs from the sessions during which they were recorded. We didn’t do it intentionally, but we found after releasing the first two singles that they were very much connected, almost similar to the way a concept album is constructed. In addition, to the 4 songs from these sessions, there will be a few other tracks that some may have heard before from previous releases. It gets a little heavier in spots and more groovy in others. I think people will like it.

Q: I read your guys were influenced by Prince, Bowie, and Deftones. Three icons of their genres. If you could give one statement about each artist that would sum up what they did that moved, you enough to call them an influence?

JW: Prince was the ultimate musician and performer, PERIOD. Bowie was the only artist that could literally evolve and almost reinvent himself with each record and it never felt forced. It was always genuine and organic. Deftones put all of my favourite musical elements together. They take great guitar riffs and put them together with dynamic and powerful drums. On top of that, they layer these amazing soundscapes and interesting melody ideas with a great vocal performance to finish it out.

Q: You also have made some cool ‘n’ fun cover songs in your career thus far. How does it feel to put your twists on songs that encouraged and inspired you growing up? And your favourite song you covered so far?

JW: I like both of the covers equally, but for different reasons. The cover of ‘BORED’ was fun because it was taking a song that we had been covering live from the band’s first tour and getting in a studio situation where we could really work out some cool, different parts while trying to stay true to the original. With, ‘CULT OF PERSONALITY’, that was one of THE songs that got me into music. I mean, the groove, the vocals, the guitars, subject matter…everything about that song has made it a timeless classic. Add the fact the Corey Glover was into appearing on it, what’s not to love about that?!

Q: As the world becomes “normal” again what are a few things you are ready to get back into?

JW: PLAYING LIVE SHOWS AND TOURING.

Q: Have you guys talked about shows/tours and if so are there any dates or special events you want to share with the readers?

JW: As of right now, the only thing we have planned is CENTRAL FLORIDA METAL FEST on August 22 in Winter Park. We have a few more recording things to focus on, then we’ll look at touring on a larger scale.

Q: If your older music self could tell your younger music self, something to help them through either a struggle or growth, etc what would it be and why?

JW: “Just write great songs that you can believe in.” I think that that really is the best advice. Of course, that is an oversimplification, but if you don’t believe in what you’re doing, how can you expect others to? There is so much more to the business of music than that, but I feel you have to get that first step right to build a solid foundation for all the other stuff to matter.

Q: Acoustic sounds/or electric sounds and why?

JW: Depends on my mood, I guess. I think both have their place. A good mix and knowing where to utilize both would probably be my preference, ultimately.

Q: Any last comments?

JW: Thanks for having me and keep an eye out. We have a ton of cool stuff coming!

CONNECT WITH THE BAND:

‘See Me’ (Lyric Video)

Gears Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Stephanie Stevens and East Coast Romper, and has been released to Ever Metal on this basis. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

INTERVIEW WITH FACE THE FIRE

Remember What You're Made Of Single Cover Art

INTERVIEW WITH FACE THE FIRE
Finding Strength With Their New Single ‘Remember What You’re Made Of
By Stephanie Stevens

FACE THE FIRE ignites your senses with all the hard rock vibes. Energy induced moments, power and fiery atmospheres. Melodies that stay in your head for hours after, these guys are going to rise up quick and I love being a part of the beginnings.

Their new single ‘REMEMBER WHAT YOU’RE MADE OF’ has growth written all over it. From the uplifting, highly infectious, chorus to the verses that ring with rock sensibilities and those vocals that just glide seamlessly throughout your eardrums. A song about remembering your strength when you don’t think you have anything else to give. It’s a pure package of honesty, positive vibes and that hard driving and melody driven tone, making it a heavy hitting single to gain the band a ton of attention as the music world gets ready to take back the planet in 2021!

If the bands new single gets you moving then you need to check out the band’s older arsenal like the songs ‘DROWNING’ and SUMMER SONG’, smash hits in my eyes.

FACE THE FIRE are from Chicago, IL and have been able to work with such artists like Morgan Rose of Sevendust, Jose Urquiza of 3 Years Hollow and Jordan Popp of Seven Day Sonnet; so, to say these guys are in good hands is an understatement! To create, learn and grow with people like this, then it’s no wonder these guys write some stellar kick ass tunes.

I had a chance to speak with drummer Mike Kozlick about new single ‘REMEMBER WHAT YOU’RE MADE OF’, the background on how he found music and what band he would have wanted to sit in on as they created one of their albums.

Q: Tell me the backstory about FACE THE FIRE and what made you guys take on this particular name for the band?

A: So, we formed as a band in the spring of 2015. we recorded an EP over at The Nook studios in New Lenox, IL. Honestly, our producer at the time, had asked if this project had a name, we all looked around, based off of a story from a prior conversation we came up with Face The Fire.

Q: I saw you worked with Morgan Rose of Sevendust and recently I just interviewed another band who had his help in their music, I love seeing him helping up ‘n’ coming bands and I’m sure him and Jose Urquiza of 3 Years Hollow had a lot of advice for you guys from a music and business standpoint. What do you feel was the most important thing you took away from working with them?

A: We love those guys! Being in a room with Morgan Rose and Jose Urquiza It becomes a very knowledgeable experience. You’re like a sponge and you just take it all in. I can’t really pinpoint one piece of information that was most important, I feel like the whole experience in itself and information they had given us, was important.

Q: Let’s talk about your newest single! The song ‘REMEMBER WHAT YOU’RE MADE OF’ hit home; in this song you guys talk about strength when you don’t think you have anything left to give, it really spoke to me and made me look within myself. How does it feel knowing something you wrote can have an impact in others’ lives?

A: Well, that is a great compliment! Thank you so much! It’s one of the most rewarding feelings. We can only hope someone can take away something from our songs. Whether that be the lyrics or the music itself. It’s a very humbling thing!

Q: Have you ever written a song that got you through a really tough time but when writing it you never knew it was going to open your eyes to helping you? If you haven’t written a song, has another artist’s song done that for you?

A: For me personally, I would say that I was going through a really tough time a couple years ago and an artist by the name of Bilmuri had a couple songs out that helped me through those times. I was able to thank him in person for getting me through those times at a show he played in Chicago. It was a really cool moment.

Q: What do you feel has been your biggest growth in songwriting since your debut album “BUILT TO BURN”?

A: I’ll say that our newest single ‘Remember What You’re Made Of’ was in my opinion, kind of a turning point with our songwriting. I feel like it’s a very well-balanced song where it can attract to different crowds.

Q: Are you guys more of studio “nerds” (in a good way) or do you thrive in the live experience and what are the biggest challenges in both atmospheres?

A: I would have to say the live experience. The biggest challenges, with playing shows, is making sure you’re really drawing the crowd in and getting that nice reception at the end. With studio, it’s just about wanting to be perfect and making sure everything is exactly what you want in the song.

Q: You released the single ‘DROWNING’ in 2020 while the chaos of life was happening. Plus, it has a more aggressive tone to it. Was this written from the perspective of being in lockdown and was writing something that got you guys through everything the world was going through?

A: So that song was actually written before lockdown. Nothing to do with it whatsoever. But when we released it, it just fell on bad timing. But still had a very good reception to it amid The chaos that 2020 was.

Q: Did you always have music growing up and when was it that you decided to take it seriously and try to make something of it?

A: Yeah, I had music growing up, my dad has been a musician his whole life, and I had a couple brothers growing up that also were into music and played some instruments. I started taking it seriously when I was about 17 years old. I then started joining bands from there and the rest is history.

Q: Who influences you from a lyrical standpoint and why do you think you are inspired by them?

A: I feel like there’s too many to choose from! That’s a tough one!

Q: If you could sit in on any band’s writing process what band would it be and what album would you have loved to be a fly on the wall for?

A: I would have to say Sevendust – “Cold Day Memory”. Top to bottom that album is just fantastic!

Q: Have you guys been able to talk about local shows or even a possible tour and, if so, can you tell us some info for fans who are craving shows and live interaction?

A: Thankfully yes! Saturday, August 7th we are playing at Bottom Lounge in Chicago. We just booked another show at WC Social Club in West Chicago on August 21st as well!

Q: For people just hearing about you now, what do you want to let people know about the band that will help you connect with others?

A: We are just 5 guys that love music. That love playing shows. We love when our music can connect with our friends. We try not to use the word fans, because if you’re supporting us, you’re a friend of ours!

Q: Anything else happening in the near future that I didn’t hit upon for you guys and any words you want to tell your fans that have been there since the beginning?

A: Right now, we’re just getting our new single ‘Remember What You’re Made Of’ to as many people as possible. We have the few shows coming up. You can follow us and find the most up to date on our socials:

THANK YOU so much for the continued support over the years, we can promise you, it does not go unnoticed and we are forever grateful!

CONNECT WITH THE BAND:

‘Remember What You’re Made Of’ (Official Video)

Face The Fire Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Stephanie Stevens and East Coast Romper, and has been released to Ever Metal on this basis. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

INTERVIEW WITH ZERO THEOREM

Zero Theorem - Threat (Violent Idols Remix)
Zero Theorem – Threat (Violent Idols Remix) – Artwork

INTERVIEW WITH ZERO THEOREM
Heavy, Rock Chameleons of the music world!
By Stephanie Stevens

I always love hearing that ZERO THEOREM are coming out with new stuff or working on new music because this Los Angeles band always bring out fresh ‘n’ new aspects to their music and they grow on each new single or album they put out. This time around the guys in ZT collaborated with the Violent Idols to mix up and remix the hell out of one of their hard hitting tracks called ‘THREAT’. Bringing in that “industrial, electro” feel to the song really puts it on another level of interest. But the guys in ZT always bring that interesting vibe and the heavy hitting intricate memorization of music into everything they do; just give their song ‘JOKE’ a listen and you will get it! Then they can swoon you with a track like ‘AREA’ with its infectious chorus, it’s a totally solid track, or the darker and rocking vibe of ‘BECOMING’ with its impactful and massive vocal display. This band are the chameleons of the hard rock world and I am loving every moment of it.

I had another opportunity to catch up with lead vocalist Caesar about the work they did with Violent Idols, future collaborations, how they make some cool ass videos for their music and their up ‘n’ coming tour with Fozzy.

Q: First off, how Is the camp of ZERO THEOREM doing, getting back to some normalcy in life? And is your sanity still intact after this past year and a half?

A: It’s certainly great to begin returning to normalcy, and we’re especially excited to experience live music again. We all particularly enjoy live shows, whether we’re performing or part of the audience. We’d like to think our sanity is completely intact, but we’d probably be fooling ourselves. The virus has undoubtedly affected us all and may continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

Q: Congrats on the release of the Violent Idols remix of ‘Threat’. This track has been a crowd favourite at your live shows – was this the main reason you wanted to put a new twist to it? What does the song mean to you?

A: Yes, that was part of it. It’s always been an effective closer and generated a lot of positive feedback. When we toured with Nonpoint, multiple people who showed up toward the end of our set told us they were sorry they didn’t attend earlier. The song was never a single, so we wanted to give it some attention in a different way.

Q: When picking a song to remix – do you guys have a vision of the “twist” you want it to take? Or was there more of a fluid collaboration with Violent Idols to get to this new version?

A: It starts with an idea, and ‘Threat’ seemed to lend itself to a more industrial or electronic interpretation. From there, Violent Idols began to work on the remix while continuing to consult and collaborate with us. We love what they did with it and how it turned out.

Q: In your years as music fans were you big on the industrial and electronic genre? If so, what do you find the most interesting about that way of creating music & songwriting?

A: We’re definitely influenced by those genres, including work by artists such as Nine Inch Nails, Ministry, Fear Factory, Prodigy, and Static X. For us, the most interesting aspect is blending sounds that are more synthetic or mechanical with a traditional hard rock or heavy metal approach. It’s fun to widen the range of the sound spectrum and explore different textural possibilities in that way.

Q: Do you plan to keep working with other artists down the line on new material as ZERO THEOREM continues to evolve?

A: We had great fun collaborating with Violent Idols and will definitely work with others in the future. ZT will always be looking for ways to work outside the box creatively.

Q: Do you feel your songwriting grows more when working with other artists outside the ZERO THEOREM camp? Does that motivate you as a creator?

A: Others constantly inspire us, so having the opportunity to work directly with them is a genuine pleasure and definitely provides us more perspective and motivation.

Q: You also did a cool thing working with YouTube artist Goop Wizard on a really gnarly visualizer video. How did that partnership happen?

A:We were fans of his work and felt it would be a good fit for the remix. Thankfully, he was available and agreed to work together.

Q: All your videos are very different and pretty sweet to watch – is someone in the band into videography and how important do you feel a video is to a song on the whole?

A: The founding members of the band have always been heavily into film and animation, especially within the genre of science fiction. Zero Theorem is meant to be a multimedia project with the visuals offering another layer to the experience. Additionally, some of the newer videos we’ve created offer a stand-alone interpretation of the songs that connect to a wider fictional universe we’re building.

Q: Your EP’s “THE KILLING I” and “THE KILLING II” have been out for a while and brought your fans and music world some heavy hitting singles. You just recently put out a limited edition of this two-part series. Other than it including the ‘Threat’ (Violent Idols Remix) what did you do in addition for this special limited-edition release package?

A: First of all, thank you! We wanted it to be special, so we’ve made it available in physical form, both CD and our first ever vinyl, along with different pieces of art, which are the last of THE KILLING series.

Fans can also purchase a shirt made for the release.

Q: Looking back on both EP’s – what is your proudest moment of those songs you created (if you could narrow it down to one) and why does that moment stand out the most for you?

A: I think I’m most proud of the progression and how we’re continuing to expand the sound of the band. It’s difficult to pick favourites, and we all have different ones, but I’m a big fan of ‘Joke’ and ‘Swarm’ and can’t wait to play those live.

Q: Rumour has it, in September, you are back on the road with Fozzy. Are you guys putting an even more intense look into your shows with everyone having that live aspect missing for so long?

A: We’re going to need to contain ourselves a bit because we are beyond excited. We’re committed to busting that tour open every night.

Q: What’s one thing you’re going to have to brush the rust off of tour life when it happens?

A: Long drives become second nature once you’re out there, but since it’s been a while, those first couple drives might be rough!

Q: Has the band been writing for new EP’s or full-length album and if so – can you give the world a small hint into the sound or vibe you’re currently creating for new music?

A: We have! I think we’re really pushing the metal and industrial vibes with the new music. It’s our heaviest material to date along with some of the most personal. We’re also working on our first ever cover.

Q: Any last comments to your fans?

A: Thank you so much! Also, anything you can do – follow us everywhere you can and spread the word about ZT…it all matters! And don’t forget to come see us or shoot us a message!

CONNECT WITH THE BAND:

‘Threat’ Zero Theorem & Violent Idols Remix (Visualizer Video)

‘Threat’ Original (Official Audio)

Zero Theorem Promo Pic (Credit Dead Level Media)
Photo by Dead Level Media

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Stephanie Stevens and East Coast Romper, and has been released to Ever Metal on this basis. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

INTERVIEW WITH KINGDOM COLLAPSE

Unbreakable Album Cover Art

INTERVIEW WITH KINGDOM COLLAPSE
By Stephanie Stevens

The world is so much better with San Antonio, TX hard hitting band KINGDOM COLLPASE in it. The band features, Jonathan Norris (Vocals), David Work (Guitar), Aaron Smith (Bass) and Elijah Santucci (Drums) and they came together to make some prominent, exceptional hard rocking music. I got introduced to the band when I happened to find them on Spotify and heard there single ‘SUFFER’ which was appeasing to the ears due to the hard, diverse, melodically impressive tones and a storyline everyone can relate to, one way or another. The next thing I knew I had a press release about the band in my inbox and I was stoked to get to know them better. They are releasing a new single in their arsenal ‘UNBREAKABLE’, an anthem that will jolt you emotionally and bleeds with honesty.

They have just signed with Dynamic Talent International’s roster (which includes Red, Alesana, The Veer Union and more) and, with this partnership in hand, tour dates will be coming soon as life gets back to normal. So, once you fall in love with the sound of this band you can jump on tickets to see them kill these killer hard rock tunes live.

I had a chance to chat with Singer Jonathan Norris about the lyrical value in their music, how the band got together, videos and being on mainstream radio so early in their career.

Q: Introduce me to the world of KINGDOM COLLAPSE, how is it being a band coming out of Texas and how you all met?

A: How’s it going, Stephanie! Good question! Me and the guys grew up playing in several different bands and I knew everybody for a while before we actually formed this line-up! Aaron Smith and I go way back to our early childhood days. David Work and I played in an old band together and Elijah, our drummer used to play in another band in the Houston area that we would play shows with when we came to town. Being in a Hard Rock band from Texas is funny because everyone and their mother listens to country around here. So, we’re very much against the grain of what’s going in the area right now, musically-speaking.

Q: After hearing a few tracks it seems you guys are almost like the therapist Rock band, lyrically bringing out relatable and relevant topics in your music. How does it feel having fans being helped by your music and, for you personally, how does it feel to be able to write music that can be real and honest?

A: Thank you! That’s exactly what music did for me growing up. It’s always been a form of therapy and an emotional release. I write about real-life struggles and situations that left their mark on me. It’s been so awesome seeing our songs have that same effect on people and help them in a positive way. That’s something that is signature to Kingdom Collapse and we never want to lose that.

Q: Your newest single ‘UNBREAKABLE’ is keeping on track with the emotion and honesty. On a personal level, how has a past struggle helped you guys as a band get stronger and grow?

A: Definitely! ‘Unbreakable’ was written last year, (fun fact) shortly after I actually had COVID-19. I could hardly breathe for almost two months after the fact and had to really push my lungs back into shape to sing again. But to really dive deeper, the song was written about WAY more than that. It’s about all of the life struggles that we all go through from the time we’re born to the time we die. Loss, cancer, heartache, betrayal, divorce, financial disaster, etc. The list goes on and on, but it’s about those things making you stronger.

Q: When will or when did the new single drop and is this a teaser for a full-length or EP coming our way soon?

A: The single dropped Friday, June 18th and is available everywhere! This will be a single from the upcoming album. Still in the album process as of right now but this is the first taste of the new album, sometime in 2022.

Q: You guys always have some killer videos to go along with your songs. Do You think that, with the topics you write about in the songs, a video is very important to base the story around it and how do you all enjoy the video process?

A:We love doing our music videos! Kevin from Kreuked Media has been with us since the beginning and it’s incredible to see how much we’ve grown as a team since our first video, ‘Suffer’.

Q: You covered Saliva’s ‘Always’. What made you take on that particular song and band?

A: Good question! I always loved Saliva growing up and ‘Always’ was a favourite of mine. It started as something fun during the shutdown and then I went to the guys with the recording and was like “We got to put this out!”.

Q: What other artists or musicians inspire you guys and who were the first band that made you want to be a musician in a serious manner?

A: I would say the first band to really inspire me as a kid was definitely Creed. Love them or hate them, they were the SHIT back in the day! Tremonti inspired me to pick up the guitar in the first place. I know David would say the same thing! Haha.

Q: One song and video of yours I was very interested in was ‘Payback’. Give me a brief description of where the lyrical topic came from and, with all the videos you have done, how did the making of this one differ?

A: Yeah! “Payback” was written about the feeling of being backstabbed by someone that you thought was there for you and had your back. It’s just about immersing yourself in that angry feeling and letting it all out. Which is why it makes such an awesome workout song too! Haha.

Q: Being an up ‘n’ coming band on the scene, how does it feel knowing your music has been on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Top 40 and Sirius XM Octane? If you hear your stuff on the radio what emotions run through you?

A: It’s so surreal! We’re coming up on our third single that has gone to Sirius XM Octane and it’s crazy to see us wedged in between bands that we’ve looked up to for so long! The Billboard thing is nuts! It’s something that we always had our sights on and it’s awesome to see things consistently moving up and in the right direction.

Q: If you had any advice to people heading into the latter half of 2021, what would it be?

A: My advice would be too keep your head up! It’s been a crazy last year and a half but it’s awesome to see life somewhat return to a sense of normalcy.

Q: In May 2021 you signed with Dynamic Talent Int, one of the leading booking agents. Before this were you guys booking your own tours (Pre-Covid) and are you ready to become road dogs? What are you most excited about with this? Any Tours you can leak out or local shows you are gearing up for?

A: Yeah! Everything booked before this point was booked by us, DIY. With the success of our last radio single, ‘UPRISE’, that really changed the game for us so we’re ready to get out there and meet all of our incredible fans.

Q: Any last comments or words to your fans that you want to express before we end the interview?

A:Thank you so much for reaching out and having us do an interview with you! Looking forward to meeting you out on the road and we will see you soon! ‘Unbreakable’ is out NOW!

CONNECT WITH THE BAND:

‘Unbreakable’ (Audio)

Kingdom Collapse Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Stephanie Stevens and East Coast Romper, and has been released to Ever Metal on this basis. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with TRUE VILLAINS

True Villains Logo

EMQ’s with TRUE VILLAINS

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Nashville, Tennessee based Hard Rock band, True Villains. Huge thanks to them for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

True Villains was founded on a mutual passion for rock. Moving to Nashville from all over the country, the band met and began planting a foothold in the local scene. Quickly coming up in the Nashville scene, we were graced with awesome opportunities like opening for Tyler Bryant, Stryper, Tremonti, and eventually touring with Steel Panther. Through word of mouth, the band soon caught the attention of producer Nick Raskulinecz who has produced our latest three singles.

How did you come up with your band name?

Being based in Nashville, we felt like the black sheep of the scene.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We are based out Nashville, Tennessee, US. There is a small rock scene, but most of the music industry in the area is country or pop.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

As of March 5th, ‘Dig Your Grave’ is our latest single. There are two other singles currently available as well: ‘The Villain’ and ‘Blood In The Water’.

‘Dig Your Grave’ (Official Video)

‘The Villain’ (Official Video)

‘Blood In The Water’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Led Zeppelin, Guns ’N Roses, Aerosmith, Royal Blood, Foo Fighters, Avenged Sevenfold, Metallica, Audioslave, Alice in Chains.

What first got you into music?

Hearing Motley Crüe’s Greatest Hits record, growing up in households with music blasting, getting a guitar for Christmas, getting Guitar Hero for Christmas and thinking it was as easy to play bass.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Post Malone or Dave Grohl

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Rock am Ring because we’ve grown up watching the live videos of our favourite bands playing there for years.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Collage of pictures from personal Instagram page. Package of video tapes of home videos mixed with live Led Zeppelin footage.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

If you had a choice between being a musician or going to law school, we hope you don’t mind six years of college.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Chris Cornell

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

The best part is definitely playing live shows. When you’re so called “tour manager” doesn’t get your veggie tray from catering after the shows.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

The internet created an over saturation of the music industry and as a result has made it more difficult for bands to rise above without backing from labels or high streaming numbers.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

“Bad” – Michael Jackson, “Appetite For Destruction” – Guns ’N Roses, “Pump” – Aerosmith, “Animosity” – Sevendust!

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

Vinyl, but with an awesome system for it.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

Norfolk, VA at the NorVa opening for Steel Panther 2019.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Harley Davidson Sales Rep, Dentist, Military Officer, High School History Teacher, Physical Education Teacher.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Michael Jordan, Jim Gaffigan, Benmont Tench, Rob Zombie, Mark Tremonti.

What’s next for the band?

Writing and recording more tracks with Nick. Hitting the road when venues open back up.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

All major music streaming outlets as well as Facebook, Instagram. Our handle for everything is @truevillainsnashville

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Biscuit

True Villains Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.