26 September 2008

(No Prog Content) Wacken Records Overview, Part I

Wacken Records is a ‘new’ label with a longer history. Previously releasing music under the Armageddon Music banner, they release heavy metal and hard rock albums from an international range of artists.

While metal is usually o
utside my normal remit here (I love metal, but this is a prog blog, not a metal blog, and as such generally don’t cover it unless there is a crossing of genres...progressive metal certainly has its place here), I’d be remiss to not mention the new releases that have been sent to me, in the hopes that some of you have similarly wide musical interests and might find some of this interesting. I certainly do.

Rose Tattoo
Blood Brothers (Special Tour Edition): These guys have been around for practically ever. Hailing from Australia, their early releases were even produced by George Young and Harry Vanda, best known for their work with country mates AC/DC. Given this background, one might not be surprised to find out these guys share a similar musical sound to AC/DC. Having said that, they are definitely not cut from the exact same musical cloth.

Blood Brothers is the band’s 11th album, and comes close to the 30th anniversary of the band’s first full-length release. Expect energetic bluesy hard rock and roll, with punch, power, and a decided lack of finesse. “Black Eyed Bruiser” and “Slipping Away” are a powerful one-two punch as album openers, and “Once In A Lifetime” features some fantastically grungey slide guitar work courtesy of either Mick Cocks or Dai Pritchard.

Being that this is a Tour Edition release, extras have been packed into this re-release (the album came out originally in 2007). Wacken Records have packed in a 16:9, 5.1 DVD of the band’s performance from the 2006 Wacken Open Air Festival as a bonus.

Black Eyed Bruiser 3:31

02. Slipping Away 3:01
03. Once In A Lifetime 4:44
04. 1854 3:38

05. City Blues 4:47
06. Sweet Meat 3:53
07. Man About Town 3:18

08. Creeper 5:25

09. Stand Over Man 2:43

10. Nothing To Lose 3:20

11. Lubricated 2:27

- Live At Wacken Open Air 2006
01. Rock N´Roll Outlaw

02. Man About Town

03. Remedy
04. Black Eyed Bruiser

05. Assault & Battery

06. Tramp
07. Sweet Meat

08. Rock N´Roll Is King

09. Manzil Madness

10. Once In A Lifetime

11. Nice Boys

12. Bad Boys For Love

13. Astra Wally

GirlschoolLegacy: Girlschool is one of the seminal NWOBHM (New Wave of British Heavy Metal) bands. While they never got much critical recognition beyond the early 1980’s, they are the longest running all-female band in hard rock. Their style influenced bands like The Donnas, while their sound is straight ahead punk-influenced hard rock/metal…choppy guitar chords, pounding drums and a hundred pounds of attitude packed into each 4 minute blast of sound.

Legacy is the band’s first release in 4 years, and 28 years on from their first album, it’s obvious that the women of Girlschool feel they have as much to prove now as they ever have. The album is solid throughout…while no individual songs necessarily stand out, there’s a level of consistency here that is refreshing. The songs are all solid rockers, played with lots of panache and energy. Guests abound on Legacy, including Ronnie James Dio, Tony Iommi, Lemmy Kilminster, Phil Campbell, ‘Fast’ Eddie Clark, J.J. French, Eddie Ojeda and Neil Murray…a plethora of NWOBHM and classic metal guests.

Despite a history filled with changes, one things seems constant…Girlschool remains true to their rock and roll roots, sounding every bit as vital and alive with musical fire today as they did bursting out of the gate in the 1970’s.

01. Everything's The Same (feat. Kelly Johnson on percussion - her ashes)

02. From The Other Side

03. I Spy (Girlschool Mix)

04. Spend Spend Spend (feat. J.J. French - guitar solo)

05. Whole New World (feat. Neil Murray - bass, Phil Campbell - lead guitar solo)
06. Just Another Day (feat. Phil Campbell - guitar solo)
07. Legend (feat. Neil Murray - bass)
08. Still Waters
09. Metropolis (feat. Fast Eddie Clarke - guitar solo) Motörhead cover

10. Don`t Mess Around (feat. Eddie Ojeda - guitar solo)

11. Zeitgeist

12. Don't Talk To Me (feat. Lemmy on bass, vocals and triangle)

13. I Spy (Dio/Iommi Mix) (feat. Ronnie James Dio on vocals, Tony Iommi - lead guitar) - Bonus Track

14. Emergency - Bonus Track

15. London - Bonus Track

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