Signal From Mars – Can I Get A Redo

Posted in Signals From Mars on April 17th, 2015 by marsaries

Skid Row have decided to rerecord their classic 18 & Life with new singer Tony Harnell, no doubt this was done to showcase Tony’s talent and let people know that he can sing a lot like Sebastian Bach. They’re trying to get the point across that like Miller Lite it is the same great taste, but less filling. In other words, you’re going to hear the songs a lot closer to how they were originally sung, without the band members having to deal with a collective hemorrhoid behind the scenes. How will this pan out for the band? I haven’t read any comments online regarding this issue, but I’m sure the fans will still be torn between Tony is great, and bring Sebastian back. Again, move on in your relationship, or bring back that ex-wife of yours.

A lot of bands go through personnel issues, it always baffles me that people don’t realize that human nature applies to everyone. If something happens at your job, it can be applied to a band as well. Case in point the bickering going on between Ozzy and Bill Ward. I have sided with Ozzy and Black Sabbath on this issue for years. Being a drummer I understand how physical it can be to play, and if you don’t take care of yourself, or practice when you’re away from consistent playing, most lose their ability to play like they once did. Also, there is a big difference between being coked up early on in life, having your heart pump a million miles a minute, while you’re recording or on stage, and everything is a blur, as opposed to being close to 70 with health issues creeping up continuously. The debauchery they lived catches up to most, Keith Richards maybe being the only exception. But look, if someone can’t perform a job, they are let go, it’s that simple. People have this utopian idea that Bill needs to be in the band for there to be some sort of closure, I don’t subscribe to that as he hasn’t even played drums on the majority of his solo work! So if he leaves the drumming on his albums to others, why shouldn’t Sabbath do the same? I am a huge Bill Ward fan, and have often argued that he is as influential as John Bonham. Although I have to say, most stoner bands actually copy Vinny Appice’s playing and not Bill’s. Dispute it all you want, but the Vinny’s calling card is his use of the ride, it is synonymous with his playing, this is what most bands emulate.

Getting back to the redo scenario, most bands rerecord their hits to get them on movie or video game soundtracks. You name it, Guns N Roses, Kiss, Def Leppard have all done this for various reasons, usually it is because the label that owns the original recording is asking an arm and a leg for a track, and the band is receiving only a fraction of what the label is receiving. Guns N Roses however did this to cut former band members out so they had little to no claim to royalties for tracks used during a movie. Then you have the case of L.A. Guns who has redone their hits multiple times, and their biggest selling album. I have a strange feeling that there aren’t too many film makers begging for The Ballad Of Jane. Similar to GNR, the constant infighting within Ratt made Stephen Pearcy rerecord all of the Ratt material you hear during the acclaimed movie The Wrestler. Wait you thought that was Ratt? Well no, that’s Stephen and his solo band. After years of disputes over royalties, Ozzy (Sharon) famously rerecorded Blizzard Of Oz and Diary Of A Madman with then Ozzy band members Robert Trujillo (Metallica) and Mike Borden (Faith No More), just to cut Bob Daisley and Lee Kerslake out. Years later the original recordings were restored and offered via the boxed set commemorating both albums releases.

Is this fair to fans? Especially when you may have to purchase an import to complete your collection in order to get your hands on redone material? Is there ever a case where the redone track is played on a station more than once? Wouldn’t it make more sense to release a live rendition of a track with your current line up? Oh wait, that live album was probably recorded in the studio anyway. At least Skid Row is offering 18 & Life as a free download, below you can stream or download the track. Check it out and let us know what you think on our Facebook page.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Podcast Episode 104 – Music Based Episode

Posted in Audio, Feed on April 17th, 2015 by marsaries

This is a music based episode that contains pieces of music from Slipknot, Fear Factory, Fu Manchu, Fuel, Armored Saint, Yngwie Malmsteen, Impellitteri, Bruce Dickinson and Widowmaker. Support the bands you love and help support the podcast at the same time, go to our Amazon store and pick up any of the albums featured during this episode here.

The episode can be streamed or downloaded from here:

Download From iTunes
Download From Stitcher

Play
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Signals From Mars – The Rules Don’t Apply To You

Posted in Signals From Mars on April 10th, 2015 by marsaries

So last week I nailed it by suggesting Mike Portnoy might be the fill in for A.J. Pero in Twisted Sister. Not saying I told you so, but it was easy to figure out that his name would draw more money than Joe Franco to the band. What I find interesting is that the band has come out and said they’re doing a farewell tour. Well it will extend from this year to next year. Listen, I love the band, but come on, Twisted Sister has not done a full blown tour in 30 years. They play select festival dates around the world, and that’s about it. In this day and age when playing a few festivals gets you a huge chunk of change it is too tempting to just say no. This isn’t Metallica, Kiss, or Iron Maiden dropping the mic on stage saying “we out”. Kudos to them if they never play again, but too many bands have already said “nope this is it”, and guess what a few months later come back with “oh we were wrong, we’re having too much fun”, oh and by the way the money for us to continue playing isn’t bad either. I think it’s a joke for bands to have to come out and say “we’re done”. You’re done when you’re in the ground, seriously look at every other form of popular music that has come and gone, doo-wop, big band, Motown, etc. and what is happening now with rock and metal acts has been happening to them for a while. Select acts continuing with a guy that was in the fourth version of the band, or a relative of an original member. So get ready for Twisted Sister with Jessie Blaze Snider, or something similar. Not pointing a finger at them specifically, but it is an easy example to make. Don’t be shocked for this to begin to happen, it has happened, and rock and metal is not exempt from human behavior. And again, more power to them, or any band that decides to continue on, it should be their choice, and no one else’s decision to make.

People have this cartoon world like idea that “rock stars” live on a different plain than the rest of us. We grew up with Dick Dastardly, Bugs Bunny, The Simpsons, The Munsters, Spider-Man etc. and think musicians are somehow the same because they show off a cartoonish image or fantasy world like setting in their videos and photo shoots, but that’s far from the norm. Most bands tour when they’re on vacation, case in point Greg Chaisson who just had to leave Red Dragon Cartel, or Mark Mendoza himself of Twisted Sister who is a bounty hunter and the main reason why they do not tour more.

“Why don’t they change their name” is something I’ve read a ton this week. “Why don’t they bring back Sebastian” a bunch more have mentioned. “I guess Skid Row doesn’t like making money” is something else that has been thrown out there. “The band only existed from 89 to 95”. Listen I grew up in New Jersey, and we had Skid Row jammed down our throats, as a result, I never really cared for the band. Do they have tracks that I can listen to? Sure, but I need to move on quickly after, sorry. A lot of it has to do with the diva like attitude Sebastian has displayed since day one. If this is what he is giving off to the general public, I can’t even imagine what it might be like to actually work with him! This is the same guy that got pissy and started a fight in a bar because people wouldn’t recognize him as a “rock star”.

So to answer some of these rather ridiculous quotes, “I guess Skid Row doesn’t like making money” really? “Why don’t they bring Sebastian Bach back, it’s what the fans want”. So Sebastian is playing 30 to 80 thousand seat stadiums and festivals on his own? Or that happening because he’s opening up for Guns N Roses and he knows how to behave himself around Axl Rose? How many seat theaters is he playing at the moment? What about Skid Row? Around the same right? So what they could hope for is maybe getting on a summer tour as an opener for a larger band. Maybe that reward does not merit working with him? Maybe there really isn’t that much money involved in having to put up with him, and it just isn’t worth it? Folks, you and your wife or ex-girlfriend could not make things happen, but your friends, and family wanted to see you guys get back together, how many times does that work out? Why does human nature not apply to bands? Oh they live in a fantasy world, that’s why. Also, look at the revolving door Bach has had with his solo band, talk of him reneging on paying players, forcing musicians to hand over writing credits to him in order for a track to make an album, etc. So would you deal with that? Would you work for your boss, and have them only pay you a fraction of what was promised? Or how about you patenting a product, and the company forcing you to hand the patent over in order for them to manufacture your invention? I know there are a lot of die-hard Skid Row fans out there, but even at the height of their popularity they were not Motley Crue, Aerosmith or Kiss where money ultimately made them put aside differences, all be it on separate busses, planes, or what have you, but it facilitated getting them up on stage.

“Why doesn’t the band change their name?”, first off they own the name, why shouldn’t they be allowed to do what they want with a property they own. If you own a house or business, do you want someone coming in telling you how to run the place? Should you be forced to change the name because the chef or the hostess has moved on to another job? This comes up all the time, when Jeff Hanneman died people called for Slayer to change their name. Do you understand how much money that name generates? The Kerry King Band, regardless of his stature in the metal community will not pull in as much, sorry, but that’s just how it is. So why should they be forced to abandon a name they cultivated? Skid Row tried, but Ozone Monday didn’t have the same pull, people should applaud them for at least trying. How many “fans” say “oh I didn’t know they were still together” playing as Skid Row, so that further proves that changing the name and starting from scratch will not help in any way shape or form. In the end people will unfortunately only be there to hear their hits, so even if they’re playing as Slave To The Grind, there will still be some drunken asshole screaming Youth Gone Wild between each song. “The band only existed from 89 to 95”, so because you lost sight, or interest in the band, it can’t exist for the rest of us? “Iron Maiden died after DiAnno left” similar deal, just because you’re emotionally bound to a certain period of the band does not mean they somehow died off.

Last point on Skid Row, Tony Harnell is a great singer, he’s a known commodity, an established singer around the world that could actually help the band bring some old time fans back. The switch to Johnny Sollinger was a lot like Iron Maiden going with Blaze Bayley. I saw them open for Kiss years ago, and although I was not a big fan, Sollinger seemed to just be going through the motions, not sure why it took them this long to realize it and make the change. Being close to the situation a lot of times you fight to make your decisions stick, like dating the wrong person. Even though everyone else sees things not working, you fight all you can to prove them wrong, until one day you realize that what everyone else is saying was true.

Wrapping up with Dee Snider, he was great to me back in the day. Was my first interview, he was down to Earth, could not have been nicer to a deer in headlights nineteen year old conducting his first interview. But back then he had a taste of what it was like to be in and out of stardom. This is someone that was left with no money at all, zero, had to sell everything, rode a bike to work every day, and he built everything back up. But not as the guy on those early albums, singing about rebellion, and over coming, but by being the guy in the white denim doing Leader Of The Pack and Be Chrool To Your Scuel. He has done it becoming a clown, a loud mouth that does what it takes to get his name out there on TV, or any other medium that will allow him to pontificate. So after all he’s gone through, one of his first public appearances discussing A.J. Pero’s death he comes off with no tact bashing him. People will say “what’s the big deal, he’s telling the truth, why does he have to be P.C. about it?” You can’t go on and complain about A.J. not having his affairs in order, divulge the goings on of his family, and essentially throw gasoline in the press regarding A.J.’s personal family life. Why should anyone cast judgment on how he dealt with things? Dee is pissed, I get that, but choose your words wisely. As Lemmy once said “just cause you got the power, that don’t mean you have the right”. Dee has gone on record to say playing these shows will help A.J.’s family straighten things out. So if you want to help them out, don’t go out in public and air his family’s business. Should he have been checkout due to his family’s health issues, yes, without a doubt, we should all do this. He didn’t want to? Well again, his business. Selfish as Dee put it? Perhaps, but life is complicated, it is easy to point fingers and get up on a pedestal and say “I would have done this”, but guess what, you’re not in that situation, and until you are, you really don’t know how you would actually react.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Signals From Mars – Hits You Don’t Have Any Stinken Hits

Posted in Signals From Mars on April 3rd, 2015 by marsaries

I was about to kick off my first opinion post a few weeks ago. The topic was to be Dee Snider’s recent comments about Doug Aldrich, Kiss, and others. He more or less stated that musicians like Aldrich do not deserve to use the name Whitesnake as a reference since he joined the band after their “big hits”. Then that same afternoon as I’m ready to put my ideas to post I found out that A.J. Pero passed away. My heart goes out to him, his family, bandmates and fans. His passing is a huge loss to the hard rock and metal community, his intro to We’re Not Going To Take It is as influential, and important in my opinion as tracks like When The Levee Breaks, War Pigs, or other track that you might look to learn when first picking up the sticks. I know, I played the hell out of it, and it is the perfect example of how each player has his own technique and feel, and no matter how much you practice, you’ll never nail the part down like A.J. did. There was also a who’s who of known players that came out of the woodworks stating how A.J. helped him or his band out at some point in their career. Truly a tragic loss.

Getting back to Dee, look, I love Twisted Sister, and although this is the first thing a lot of people write when they are about to torpedo a band, I truly mean it. Dee was my first ever interview when I was a teenager and he was launching his band Widowmaker (I’ll bring them up again later). They also hold a huge emotional piece of my heart, due to their show at the now legendary NY Steel benefit. As someone that was there on 9/11, and later at that show, hearing and seeing them play The Price made me start crying and realize that it was time to start healing and move forward. It was a long journey, but that was the starting point.

So recently Dee mentioned that he had an issue with Doug Aldrich using the name Whitesnake at a review he is a part of in Las Vegas. I thought this was a complete slap in the face given the fact that Doug has played with a ton of bands, including Dio and Whitesnake. He has done sessions work, and let’s be honest he’s recently sold a ton more than most metal bands due to his work with Lady Gaga. For anyone that wants to pigeon-hole that, check out Dee’s album of Broadway hits. And here’s the thing, A.J. did not play on Twisted Sister’s last studio album Love Is For Suckers, it was Joe Franco, who later went on to play with Dee in Widowmaker, and Van Helsing’s Curse. Joe’s biggest claim to fame is playing with Twisted Sister, why shouldn’t he be allowed to say he played with the band? Reb Beech who currently plays in Whitesnake and Winger coincidentally also contributed solos to that same album, he wasn’t an official member of TS, so it makes sense he doesn’t label himself as a member, but Aldrich was an official member of Whitesnake, David Coverdale signed off on him. So now that A.J. has passed on, Joe is the logical replacement, but let’s say he isn’t available, or doesn’t want to play with the band, does who ever join the band have a right to say he plays in Twisted Sister even though he was not on Stay Hungry? What if the person that steps in is Mike Portnoy, he’s a huge name onto himself, would it be ok for him to say he played in TS? Or does that actually make Portnoy fans go out and see TS? He makes reference to the fact that Al Pitrelli was in Megadeth, but that he’s only a paid musician, not an actual member. Dee questions why should Pitrelli is listing himself as once being part of the band. Let me think, if an endorser comes along are they going to use the names Megadeth, Alice Cooper, TSO or Savatage, or are they going to say Al Pitrelli of Widowmaker?

Also, he says they don’t play any Kiss post Bruce Kulick era on House Of Hair, due to the fact that the band has not had any hits after Bruce left. This is a head scratcher to me on two counts. First off, Dee is the first one to complain that he will not do any new Twisted Sister music because stations will not play the new material. He himself does not try and break any new music on his shows either, so that’s part of the problem. Others won’t do it, so we’re not going to do it either. He also makes the argument saying that Aldrich joined Whitesnake after their hits, not playing anything from Kiss after a certain album, etc. Let’s be objective here, if this is the case, then Twisted Sister really only had two hits, We’re Not Going To Take It, and I Wanna Rock. How many times have you heard You Can’t Stop Rock N Roll on a 80s hits show? How many times have you heard it on something other than collage radio or a station or podcast that specializes in hard rock or metal? I can tell you how many, zero. If we’re being honest than the only person that can claim to be a former member of Whitesnake then is John Sykes, as he’s the only one that played on all of their radio hits. So that means you’re poo-pooing Steve Vai, Adrian Vandenberg, Vivian Campbell, etc. Just doesn’t make sense to me.

What is considered Greatest Hits for a band, is usually what they play live, but those are hits for those fans, you go beyond that fanbase and 99% of the music buying fans have no idea that the majority of a setlist exists, unless it is on the radio. That unfortunately means only two songs for TS when you are counting hits.

Recently it was announced that Chris Adler and Kiko Loureiro will officially play on the next Megadeth album. It has astonished me that people have complained about the brief snippets being released, stating that Adler does not play like he usually does with Lamb Of God. Folks, seriously Megadeth has been around for how many years, and you expect him to just take over and do his thing? None of us have heard enough to make an actual assessment of how the new Megadeth tracks sound, but the band has always, and will always be directed by Dave Mustaine. Is that really a shock to anyone? The press release sent out when Adler was confirmed covers all you need to know in the first sentence “Dave Mustaine, the creative driving force behind original American metal and hard rock crossover giants Megadeth….” Need we say more?

If you’re successful enough to make it in the music industry your band has to be run like a business. People lose track of this and they think it is some made up cartoon world. I’m surprised that Dee has lost track of that, especially given his financial ups and downs over the years. All of his comments need to be taken with a grain of salt because these types of comments come up when he’s promoting something. Wow look at that, he’s going to be releasing a new solo album shortly, sucks that they didn’t get one last album out of the original line up of TS before A.J. passed away, hope this does not become a what if situation for the band.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

My Favorite Kiss – Guitarists Part 2 – Playlist

Posted in Audio, My Favorite Kiss on March 21st, 2015 by marsaries

If you want to check out the tracks Mitch, Chris, and Victor discussed during the second installment of the My Favorite Kiss series. This time around we feature tracks by Ace, Vinnie and Bruce:

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , ,

Podcast Episode 103 – Decades – Volume 3 with Scott Thompson of Focus On Metal

Posted in Audio, Decades, Feed on March 13th, 2015 by marsaries

The Decades Series continues, this time around we are joined by Scott Thompson of Focus On Metal. For those joining us for the first time, we kick things off in the present, and start jumping back 10 years at a time to 2005, 1995, 1985 and 1975. Scott was hesitant to come on board, but as usual I had a great time talking about all things hard rock and metal with him.

Throughout the episode you’ll hear our selections, including U.D.O., Judas Priest, Mudvayne, Dokken, Ozzy Osbourne, Dio, White Lion, Aerosmith and Queen. Support the bands you love and help support the podcast at the same time, go to our Amazon store and pick up any of the albums featured during this episode here.

The episode can be streamed or downloaded from here:

Download From iTunes
Download From Stitcher

Play
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Podcast Episode 102 – Worship ACDC – Jesse Fink

Posted in Audio, Feed, Worship on March 5th, 2015 by marsaries

The latest episode of Mars Attacks is a new entry into the Worship Series. This time around the episode focuses on the band AC/DC, as a result we have author Jesse Fink on the show to discuss his book The Youngs: The Brothers Who Built AC/DC. During the show we discuss, among other things, various aspects of the book, the band, the influence their older brother George had on them, the contrast between the album George was at the helm to others, and the Zapruder like question facing the band, did any of Bon Scott’s work end up on Back In Black?

Throughout the episode you’ll hear tracks by AC/DC that have been selected by Jesse Fink. Support the bands you love and help support the podcast at the same time, go to our Amazon store and pick up any of the albums featured during this episode here. You may also purchase The Youngs: The Brothers Who Built AC/DC from the same link.

The episode can be streamed or downloaded from here:

Download From iTunes
Download From Stitcher

Play
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Podcast Episode 101 – My Favorite Kiss – Guitarists Part 2

Posted in Audio, Feed, Interviews, My Favorite Kiss on February 20th, 2015 by marsaries

Continuing the My Favorite Kiss series, we are joined by Mitch Lafon of One On One With Mitch, and Chris Czynszak of the Decibel Geek Podcast to discuss some of Ace Frehley, Vinnie Vincent and Bruce Kulick greatest Kiss tracks. You’ll also hear plenty of other Kiss talk throughout the episode, and along the way we’ll pick the “definitive” Kiss track to represent each of these great lead guitarists.

As with the previous episode in this series, there is a slight glitch in audio during the episode, we apologize in advance, and have tried to recover as much of the original audio as possible. The episode could have been re-recorded but it would lose a lot of the spontaneity you hear during the show.

Support the bands you love, and help the show out at the same time. All of the tracks discussed during this episode can be purchased from here.

The episode can be streamed or downloaded from here:

Download From iTunes
Download From Stitcher

Play
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Podcast Episode 100 – All Music

Posted in Audio, Feed on February 5th, 2015 by marsaries

Episode 100 celebrates, the show, and what is most important the music that so often feature. Without it, there would be nothing to discuss!

Throughout the episode you’ll hear our selections, including sound samples from Dio, Kiss, Shotgun Messiah, Helloween, The Michael Schenker Group, Yngwie J. Malmsteen, Scorpions and Faith No More. Support the bands you love and help support the podcast at the same time, go to our Amazon store and pick up any of the albums featured during this episode here.

The episode can be streamed or downloaded from here:

Download From iTunes
Download From Stitcher

Play
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Podcast Episode 99 – Decades – Volume 2 with Chris Vaglio

Posted in Audio, Decades, Feed on January 29th, 2015 by marsaries

This episode jumps right back into the Decades Series, this time around we are joined by Chris Vaglio a friend and college radio cohort from back in the early 90s. Although we had some technical glitches, thanks to having my Zoom H2 MP3 recorders setup as a back up, we were able to pull the interview off. During this episode we will visit tracks from the present, 2015 that is, and start jumping back 10 years at a time to 2005, 1995, 1985 and 1975. Both Chris and I pick some cool tracks, and discuss music that affected us, enjoy, etc. for each of the years in question.

Throughout the episode you’ll hear our selections, including sound samples from Angelus Apatrida, Municipal Waste, Down, Quicksand, S.O.D., Anthrax, Black Sabbath and Rainbow. Support the bands you love and help support the podcast at the same time, go to our Amazon store and pick up any of the albums featured during this episode here.

The episode can be streamed or downloaded from here:

Download From iTunes
Download From Stitcher

Play
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on RedditEmail this to someone
Tags: , , , , , , , ,
%d bloggers like this: