Hinder: Harker Heights – All Bottoms Up Bar Concert With Kings Of The Air, Tame Fury, Trine, and Within Reason

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The concert in Harker Heights was at a bar however it was an outside venue and was brutally hot and humid that day. The concert had starting times for either 6 or 6:30 pm depending on the websites you were looking at, so I got there around 6:30 pm. With the uncertainty of the start time, I was hungry and stopped to eat some Mexican food and 99 cent margaritas and missed the first band. It was the down time between the first band The Kings Of The Air which I missed and Tame Fury when I arrived. While waiting for Tame fury to come onto the stage, I walked around to see how the crowd was, it was a small crowd with most of the people there to see Within Reason and main attraction Hinder.

I made my way to the back near the bar so I could have a full view of the crowd and the stage. When it was time for Tame Fury to come onto the stage the crowd was unimpressed by them since they were there for Hinder and Within Reason. Tame Fury came on like being on stage was normal for them. I had only heard their music the day before and I was surprisingly impressed by what I heard online. When the music started to play, I was completely blown away, they had a superb sound that’s like another world between hearing them online and seeing them live. It was high energy, bold, loud, with clear vocals, and a tight sound overall, such amazing talent from a band that just started in 2014. The guys from Tame Fury aren’t flashy, showy, and they don’t need to be, oh no, they had the sound and the lyrics to make up big time for the lack of movement onstage from the heat. While Michael Mcvey was on vocals doing a great job of singing crystal clear and powerfully; drummer Phred Williams was in the background doing his own little show of throwing and spinning his sticks in time with the beats. The sound is rich, full, and engulfs you into a trance of pure bliss. The melody and beats weren’t all over the place or messy and they kept great time and hitting their marks. Erick Villareals, Brandon Williams, Mark Bankston did a wonderful job backing up Michael. The guys did a bunch of tracks, “Leave It All Behind,” “Brainwashed,” “Masquerade,” “Red Carpet,” “Fallen,” “Gift Of Life,” and “Black As The Fire.” Unfortunately, the crowd wasn’t really giving them love so Michael was trying to convince the crowd to give them some love. I did but I was in the back and they couldn’t hear me. Tame Fury is making a name for themselves by bringing a unique sound, image and attitude and presence to a versed crowd, from the older generation to the younger crowd. I cannot make this review solely about them, but they have a new album coming out and I will be able to review that.

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The next band after Tame Fury is another recent band, Trine. Trine is a trio from Austin, Texas. The band members are Deuce Wanier, Ryan Hegefeld, and Jon Yadon Jr. Trine is a very new band so I don’t know too much about them. They had a whole different act than Tame Fury, the energy is different, the sound, everything, perhaps age is a factor. Trine is more alt rock sounding and it’s in your face, bold, bad boy attitude, and slightly raw power comes from it. The sound is rich and full and just engulfs the listener. It was still daylight when Trine hit the stage but the sun was slowly setting so the lights and the smoke from the stage were more visible. The way the lights were flashing just emphases the beat and the overall sound, and unfortunately the mics and the instruments weren’t doing so well in the Texas heat and humidity so I didn’t truly appreciate their sound as much as I could have, but I did notice they had a sound all their own. Their sound is fresh, new, and all ages and generations could easily appreciate their sound and energy.
After Trine had left the stage the sun was setting and shortly after the stage was all lit up and the smoke was really going when Within Reason hit the stage.

Within Reason consists of Chris Dow, David Koone, and Griffin Zarbourgh. The guys did a few songs from their long list of tracks. Unfortunately, the heat was messing with the sound as well for the guys. However, I did get a decent idea of their sound. They did perform some new tracks from their new album, and the vocals were good, smooth, and not as rough around the edges as I had thought since their sound was smooth, not as rough and edgy as their looks, but all in all it’s not bad at all, just a little unexpected. The band has been around since 2005, their style is leaning on the alternative side of rock which works very well for them. The lights and sounds from the stage were very enticing. They were the perfect choice to lead up to Hinder.

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When Hinder hit the stage, the night truly engulfed us all, the stage was fully alive, and the crowd was ready for them. Hinder had a few technical issues due to the heat but that didn’t hold them back from going full force. The band rocked the stage with a mix of old and new songs and the excited crowd ate it up. The relatively new singer Marshal Dutton has grown on me and he did an amazing job of covering the songs from the first and second albums, and he gave the old songs new life and a surreal sound to them. He has a smooth voice that still has plenty of edge and roughness, but it’s not harsh. Marshall covered the tracks that Austin Winkler had originally done nicely. The guys did a few tracks from their As The Smoke Clears album and it was a seamless transition going from the old tracks to the new and back again. Marshall played a duo guitar solo and it was intense hardcore guitar action. All of the guys on the band performed perfectly and with energy and emotion. Marshall even did an acoustic song from their acoustic album. Some of the songs they played were “Intoxicated,” “Up All Night,” “All American Nightmare,” “Lips Of An Angel,” “Better Than Me,” “Two Sides Of Me,” “Hit The Ground,” “Rather Hate Than Hurt,” “Wasted Life,” “See You In Hell,” “Use Me, and “Get Stoned.” They also did a few songs from their new album The Reign. The guys put on a show to remember and all of the bands, not just Hinder were awesome. The strobe lights matched up to each and every song perfectly and seamlessly. It was one hell of a concert and to those who left early and to the ones who didn’t come out, you just don’t know what you missed out on.

Review by Amy East

 

 

 

 

WINTER CALLING: Faces

Formed in Florida in 2013, the band began as a side project between Wayne Hoefle (percussion, piano, and keys), who was composing film scores at the time, and guitarist Ian Medhurst who was touring with national recording artist John Wesley. They soon recruited Texas-bred bassist Tim Gilbreath, and finally to Los Angeles-based vocalist Chris Hodges. They have released two albums and some new videos for their latest album Faces.

This progressive metal band has a powerful sound that I couldn’t get enough of and had to listen to “Not Like You” over and over again. The song is tight, full of emotion and vocals so strong, Superman couldn’t stop them if he tried his best. Chock full of energy and a chorus that got stuck in my head, I listened to the song at least four times before continuing. “Follow Me Down” has more subtle moments in it, a quieter moment here and there, but not wimping out, just not as in your face, and is another amazing track that makes you amazed at the talent in this band and the ability to create such blistering sounds. “A New Me, A Few Me” has whispered vocals mixed in with growling, angry vocals and it adds a sense of menace to the song that carries onto the music which is played both heavy and more subtle in parts. The song has a creepiness to it that is both scary and sends the hairs on your arms on end with the beauty of it. The whole album is great with so many songs that are sure to become favorites, but these are the ones with videos out and ones that you would be able to listen to first and get an idea of the album, which is a treat to listen to.

This band just became one that I will be playing in my car over and over again, especially now that the weather is nice, I will be rolling down the windows and cranking this up loud. I suggest that you grab a copy and do the same.

http://www.wintercalling.com

https://www.facebook.com/wintercalling

HE IS ME – Cleansing

He Is Me is a collaboration between Portland-based songwriter and musician/producer Casey Braunger and Calgary, AB based songwriter/vocalist Steve Moore. Casey and Steve first collaborated on a 2001 track called “Silencer”. Fast forward to 2016, when Casey reached out to Steve about guest vocals on a new song, Steve liked it so much that they decided to form a new project.

This fourth single that they have released is a down tempo, electronic/industrial song that has angst, anger and enough edge to grab you and pull your ears into the swirling morass that they have concocted. The vocals and subtle at times, but then they turn savage and the song goes into a pounding drill into your soul. The guys have come up with a song that takes a little from here and there and makes it into something that you will want to replay over and over again.

This certainly hits the right buttons and makes me anxious to hear what they will come out with in the future. Stop being a tease and get a whole album out already!

Also posted on: http://ripplemusic.blogspot.com/2017/05/he-is-me-cleansing-single.html

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TOKYO BLADE: Knights Of The Blade: 4 Disc Box Set

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Tokyo Blade originally formed in 1982, releasing their self-titled debut in 1983. They formed around guitarist Andy Boulton, he was joined on their debut by Alan Marsh on lead vocals, John Wiggins on guitar, Andy Robbins on bass and Steve Pierce on drums, making a significant impact on the burgeoning NWOBHM scene that had been popularized by Iron Maiden, Saxon, Tygers Of Pan Tang and Def Leppard, as well as finding support in the pages of Kerrang! magazine. This release consists of a four Disc box set of their first three albums, many rare EPs, singles and non-album cuts from the early 1980s, including tracks from “The Cave Sessions”, “Undercover Honeymoon” 12”, “Midnight Rendezvous” EP and “Madame Guillotine” EP. Featuring lengthy and detailed liner notes from note NWOBHM and Tokyo Blade expert John Tucker

Tokyo Blade issued their debut recording in 1983, which was self-titled in the United Kingdom, and titled Midnight Rendezvous everywhere else. The album is classic metal with high-pitched vocals that aren’t too far into the stratosphere like some bands, they are a nice mix of highs and mid-level, the guitar rips throughout the album, the drumming is powerful, and the bass is heavy. The band really sounds like they were having a great time n the studio making this album, with youthful exuberance just dripping from the songs. The songs are catchy and should have been playing out of everyone’s speakers loud. I really liked “Powergame,” “Break The Chains, ” Killer City,” “Liar,” and “Sunrise In Tokyo.” For a first album, you don’t get much better than this.

The Night Of The Blade album arrived a year later, Andy Wrighton having replaced Robbins while Marsh had also left the band. The band was trying to find a new singer for their tour and got lucky with what was supposed to be the temporary throat of Vicki James Wright, but they decided to keep him as singer for the next album. His vocals were a bit more commercial sounding, but the songs were still hard and heavy. Again, the band played tight and really matured since their first album. Songs “Someone To Love,” “Night Of The Blade,” the killer “Rock Me To The Limit,” “Love Struck,” and the more commercial sounding “Lightning Strikes (Straight Through the Heart),” stand out after all of these years.

Blackhearts & Jaded Spades retains the power and singer from the previous album and sounds a bit more polished, but not wimpy. You could hear the band moving towards the huge American market with the added keyboards and more melody than on previous albums. Who can blame them? The market in America was something that pretty much every band wanted to break in and tour and be played on MTV during this period. The hard and heavy stuff was more on underground radio and bands knew where the money was; playing more melodic, adding a touch of keyboards and making the band more in tune with the big bands at the time like Iron Maiden, and Motley Crue. “Dirty Faced Angels,” “Make It Through The Night,” “Always,” are a trio of killer songs, “Loving You Is An Easy Thing To Do” is a blues based track that has a fantastic groove and should have been huge on the radio, “Undercover Honeymoon” gets things back a little heavier, then you get the power ballad “You Are The Heart,” which I could see being thrown in the mix at a high school dance back then, “Blackhearts And Jaded Spades,” “Tough Guys Tumble” get the hard rocking going again, until you come to another power ballad, “Dancing In Blue Moonlight,” which now starts to be a little much, and happily, they end the album with two blistering songs “Playroom Of Poison Dreams,” and “Monkeys Blood.” Not perfect, but still a great album that has more than enough metal to make you happy.

The fourth CD is a nineteen track collection of the band’s singles and EPs.  All of these songs were previously issued on the band’s various reissues, and it’s great to have them all together on a separate disc. This ably illustrates the musical evolution Tokyo Blade underwent from the start of the career, until their third album. Going from a harder sounding band to a more slick and commercial sound, while still retaining the great songs and playing that made you pick up the first album.

With the great liner notes, replica album sleeves and the fantastic music on the four discs, you really can’t go wrong with this purchase. The band definitely is on fire on these albums and even though they still are putting out albums now, the young, hard-edged sound of their hunger is a treasure to behold.

https://www.facebook.com/TokyoBladeOfficialFanPage/

http://www.tokyoblade.com/

https://www.cherryred.co.uk/

https://www.facebook.com/CherryRedRecords/

MATT CHANWAY: Self-titled

Coming from the death metal band Assimilation, Vancouver, BC’s Matt Chanway has his debut self-titled solo record out now that has hints of his day-job band in it. The one major difference between the two projects is that this solo album is all instrumental.

I will be honest, instrumental albums are far from my favorite things to listen to, mostly because I love hearing vocals, something to grab a hold of and keep my interest throughout, but with that said, I did still enjoy this album. This is a bit more in the progressive sound, but still straight up metal, no Pink Floyd noodling here, plus no guitar wankering like Malmsteen. Each track on here ranges from roughly six to eight minutes in length and has enough changes in the songs to keep things sounding fresh and interesting. The added drums (drum machine) and bass really help to keep things flowing and giving the album a depth and thickness. All of the playing is tight and extremely focused with the songs not going on for too long or becoming boring. You can hear the love of playing the guitar that emanates from the fingers of this extremely talented player with song after song of thrills and heavy shredding. I actually liked all the songs the same on this release, mostly because they were tight, heavy, interesting and energetic, and without a vocalist that sometimes can ruin a good album with weak or over-the-top histrionics.

Yes, I did enjoy an instrumental album, luckily the technicality wasn’t overbearing, the songs were engrossing, and the guitar was played with heart and pure talent. This is not an album just for shredders, it’s for anyone who wants an album of great metal that will get your head banging and wear your air guitar out.

Also posted on: http://ripplemusic.blogspot.com/2017/03/matt-chanway-self-titled.html

https://www.facebook.com/mattchanway/

http://mattchanwayguitar.com/

https://mattchanway.bandcamp.com/releases

STERILE JETS: No Gods No Loss

The band featuring singer/guitarist Robert Bly Moore, singer/bass player Wm. Partnoff and drummer GS Bean is a true democracy. They compose and arrange every song to bring out its best elements, delving deeply into punk, post rock, jazz and metal, with stimulating side trips into rockabilly, grunge and even pop. The noisy songs are very similar to what SST Records was putting out in the mid ’80s after they went away from straight punk rock and into more avant-garde music.

The songs are pure noise-filled hellions that challenge the listener with a complete lack of clarity and clean sounds, instead you get an album of intensity and insanity that nowadays is so refreshing since no one really does this anymore. You have touches of John Lydon, Cheech Marin doing his Alice Bowie character, and Jello Biafra in the singing with the inflections that are sometimes all in the same song. The anger and bitterness are like a kick in the groin throughout and really adds to the filthiness of the mix. “Piss On Your God” is a swirling tempest that grabs you and won’t let you go, not that you would want it to because it’s one hell of a ride and one of the greatest songs on here. The playing is sloppy, the vocals are crazed, noise, noise, noise, and the band playing like they are trying to destroy their instruments just make for a debauched and amazing journey.

Put this album on and piss off your family, open your windows and piss off the neighbors, but you will love every second of it, both the music and making people crazy. This kids is what punk rock was blending with back in the old days and very few managed to get it as right as these guys do.

Also posted on: https://ripplemusic.blogspot.com/2017/04/sterile-jets-no-gods-no-loss.html

http://sterilejets.com/

https://www.facebook.com/UpTheJets/

http://sterilejets.bandcamp.com/

THOR: Keep The Dogs Away: Deluxe

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Thor started out as a concept band in 1973. They used the names “Thor,” “Centaur” and “Mikl Body Rock.” These entities were the brainchild of Jon Mikl Thor, a vocalist, musician and body building champion who won titles such as Mr. USA and Mr. Canada. He decided to combine muscle with music and in 1977, they released their debut album Keep the Dogs Away.

This is a remastered and greatly expanded version of that debut album, one that I remember seeing not long after it came out in a record store and bought it because it looked cool, at least to a younger me, and my mom loved body builders and Dobermans. I took it home, showed my mom who loved the cover, loved the cover…she really did, and put it on. It was a bit lighter in the metal, but still had a cool hard rock sound that we both liked a lot. The title track really stuck in my head, from then until I got this CD and heard it again. My mom owned a sub store called Trudy’s Subs and she put that poster up in her store, lots of people bought food there, so I’m sure she helped sell a few copies of the album with her poster placement. So now I sit and listen to the album again after all these years and I’m surprised that it still sounds good, a bit of the times, but still has the hooks and the fun that carries it. I was really surprised at the bonus songs the most. If you just listen to the regular album, it’s full of catchy hard rock, but the bonus songs are a mix of glam rock and punky new wave. I loved the bonus disc so much because it gave me a new side of Thor that I never knew and these songs are amazing. The playing is tight, it sounds like everyone was having fun and the songs could fool people into thinking that they were underground hits back in the old days…lol. The remastering is fantastic with the sound being clear, and clean, the booklet has pictures from when the album came out, information about the album and…a reproduction of the poster that captured my mom so long ago. Not only do you get two CDs, but you get a DVD with a concert from 1980 that is fun to watch. How can you go wrong?

I really am happy that this has been released again, and with so much added to it, giving everyone a chance to see where Thor came from. This brought back great memories for me, hopefully if you are a fan, it will for you as well, and if you are trying just curious, grab this one today! This is a thunder-god that will slay you with melody, not lightning…thank Odin for that!

https://www.facebook.com/THOR.Official.Page

https://thormusic.bandcamp.com/album/keep-the-dogs-away

https://thorcentral.net/index.html

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