Now Hear This: GOGMAGOG

     In 1985 infamous British record producer Jonathon King, the guy behind George Harrison getting sued, decided to assemble a heavy metal supergroup to record a heavy metal opera. Sounds like an idea. He somehow managed to recruit two former members of Iron Maiden, singer Paul Dianno and drummer Clive Burr, one future member of Iron Maiden, guitarist Janick Gers, who had previously been in White Spirit and Gillan, former Def Leppard guitarist Pete…

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Now Hear This: MC5 – High Time

         MC5 are perhaps best known for their 1969 debut album, Kick Out The Jams, which was recorded live and features the infamous “Kick out the jams motherfuckers!” intro which was censored on some later versions of the album, “brothers and sisters” clumsily dubbed over the four offensive syllables. Many people are also quite fond of the slick garage rock of their second album, Back in the U.S.A., produced by Jon Landau,…

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Now Hear This: VAMP

     So there I am at a Walmart in Austin, Texas, perhaps it was 2003, and I come upon a bin brimming with cassette tapes for a dollar a piece. I don’t need an engraved invitation. I toss aside the Runaway Bride soundtracks and Bushwick Bill opuses and happen upon something that looks interesting, at least to me, not to most people, but to me. Four guys with long, teased blonde hair. It’s a…

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Nature Of The Priest – When "Selling Out" Just Ain't True

 The world of hard rock and heavy metal is a pretty diverse place. Be it the 70s pub rock of Australia or the current wave of speed and glam metal in Canada, one phrase that never ceases to get thrown about is “sell-out”. Perhaps as old as the genre itself, the frustrated cry that eases the pain whenever your favourite band decides to cut their hair, down-tune or throw in clean vocals never fails to…

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Van Halen 5150 album review

1986 was a year of changes, in music and the world. I was a kid then, listened to the radio quite a bit, probably more than I watched TV really. People may find this strange, but some TV was boring to me. The news, that’s what peaked my interests. And music, music was what excited me too. There were quite a few shake ups in this year. Metallica was dealing with the loss of Cliff Burton,…

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True As Steel – 1986

THE WARLOCK FIGHTS FOR ROCK In 1986 Germany’s Warlock issued their third album called True As Steel.  This record brought some interest from North America for the band on the strength of the Fight For Rock single.  My personal journey with Warlock started with the big hit All We Are from the next and last album, Triumph & Agony.  In those days the only way we would get new music was through rifling through my friend’s older brother’s…

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BLACK SABBATH featuring TONY IOMMI – Seventh Star (1986)

         About eleven years ago when I was living in Long Island City, Queens, New York, not far from the former site of the Coventry where Kiss played some of their earliest gigs, I overheard my wife on the phone with her mother. Apparently the night before my mother-in-law had gone to see a man speak who had claimed to have once been the lead singer of Black Sabbath but had come…

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Gettin Nasty Nasty in 1986

Rewind everyone to 1986! Metal was everywhere. Turn on the radio and you’d get blasted with the latest singles by Motley Crue, Whitesnake, David Lee Roth (now solo) and Van Halen (or was that Van Hagar!). MTV and Canada’s Much Music played an endless amount of Poison, Wasp, Ratt and Def Leppard. Life was good for a sixteen year old headbanger like myself. As is always the case, when something becomes popular and makes people…

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Look What the Cat Dragged In in 1986

  What do you get when you cross four hot ROCKIN guys who wear blush and lipstick better than a 15year old girl on a Friday night? POISON!  In 1986, when Poison bust on the scene, the scene wasn’t ready for them, but damn it the scene got ready. Poison’s line up at that time (Bret Michaels-lead singer, C.C. DeVille-guitar, Bobby Dall-bass and Rikki Rockett-drums) came out with pure raw aggression, and ALOT of MAKE UP. Their…

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Night Songs takes Cinderella to the Ball – 1986

I vividly remember the first time I heard Cinderella. Up here in Canada we had a show called Toronto Rocks, a one hour music video show that aired every day at 4pm. On Wednesday’s it was “Midweek Metal Mania” and since I was usually at my after school job during this time, I would have our Sony Betamax (yeah my Dad still insisted it was better than VHS) programmed to record each and every Wednesday…

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