Artist: Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman & Howe
Title: “An Evening Of Yes Music Plus”
Label: Voiceprint Music
Release Date: 4/16/2007
Genre: Progressive Rock
The reunion of four former members of Yes would be nothing short of historic for fans of the legendary Progressive Rock titans and when Jon Anderson, Rick Wakeman, Steve Howe and Bill Bruford formed Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman & Howe the output generated would be pure magic. The concert presented on this CD was originally a televised pay per view event and back in 1989 this was not as common as we find it being today which makes its existence all the more special. The band couldn’t call themselves Yes based on the bands bassist Chris Squire owning the rights to the name but with the membership in this little enterprise being who it was the world would know the score simply by listening. This was as close to pure Yes as it would come and not only would the guys do some of their classics for the screaming audience but they would also offer up some interpretations on other material and include some new compositions as well. Way back when this first aired I remembered the anticipation I had for the reunion and plunked down the necessary monies to have this brought to life in my parents living room, but having seen the DVD I must say that unless you are an absolute diehard fan that there is no real reason to own the CD.
Continue reading “An Evening Of Yes Music Plus” by Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman & Howe
Artist: Carmine & Vinny Appice
Title: “Drum Wars: The Ultimate Battle”
Label: MVD Visual
Release Date: 10/30/2007
If you are not yet familiar with the legendary drumming brothers Carmine and Vinny Appice then I suggest you stop reading, so a little research and then come back to read this review. If you know who I am talking about then fine we can continue without any incident. For decades the pair of powerful percussionists have shown us what can be done with the instrument and each is responsible for their own historic stamp on Rock and Metal music. Carmine is the older brother and as result was a little ahead of Vinny in terms of joining bands and recording. Among Carmine’s most noted groups we have Beck, Bogert & Appice, Vanilla Fudge, King Kobra, Blue Murder and of course Cactus. Each of the groups unique in their own right and all are as such due to the unique input of their drummer. Vinny on the other hand came into prominence first with Black Sabbath and then later with Dio in his own devastating solo act. In today’s music world Carmine has revisited a number of his classic bands while Vinny is reunited with the Sabbath lineup from those days under the new name Heaven And Hell.
Continue reading “Drum Wars: The Ultimate Battle” by Carmine & Vinny Appice
Artist: The Murder Junkies
Title: “European Invasion 2005”
Label: Music Video Distributors
Release Date: 11/21/2006
Genre: Hardcore Punk
The late and not-so-great GG Allin (born Jesus Christ Allin; no, really) was the undisputed most vile and disgusting front man ever to (dis)grace the rock ‘n’ roll stage and his legacy of outright vulgarity lives on thanks to his former backing band, the Murder Junkies, carrying the torch of filth, and this DVD chronicles the band’s first European tour, some twelve years after GG’s inevitable demise via overdose.
Allin’s recorded body of work spanned about thirteen years and was an alleged attempt at reinfusing danger into the moribund corpse he felt rock ‘n’ roll, particularly punk, had become, a mission he tackled with drug and alcohol-fueled gusto while unleashing some of the most over-the-top, intentionally offensive and puerile songs ever conceived. Non-hits such as “I Wanna F*ck Myself” (which got covered by Faith No More, believe it or not), “I Wanna Rape You,” “I Wanna Piss On You,” “F*cking the Dog,” “Abuse Myself I Wanna Die,” “Suck My Ass It Smells,” and the deathless “Expose Yourself To Kids” found an audience that either took Allin seriously for his untamable stance, or found his lyrical antics downright hilarious (after all, the guy did rhyme “ass” with “ass” on several occasions). It was the kind of stuff a particularly nasty eight-year-old would have penned, provided he had a profane and scatological vocabulary that extended beyond “doody” and “pee-pee” and reveled in exhibiting all of the earmarks of a budding sociopath.
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Title: “The DVD”
Label: Independent Release/Music Video Distributors
Release Date: 3/18/2008
Genre: Hard Rock
In 1975 Randy Jackson, Felix Hanemann and Guy Gelso formed Zebra and together the band would break house attendance records in their hometown of New Orleans. They were a Hard Rock band that came into popularity because of their excellent renditions of Rush, and most specifically Led Zeppelin tunes. They also blended in some of their original material to their nightly set and these songs were incredibly powerful and proved that they were not just some run of the mill band. After being convinced about it by Peppy Marchello (from The Good Rats), the band would relocate to Long Island, NY and become kings of the growing Rock club scene out there. It was a scene that found bands such as Twisted Sister also on the same path to success. This move found Zebra becoming immediate favorites of the club crowds on the island and it was as if the band had begun in this area as opposed to New Orleans. A record deal was soon secured on Atlantic Records where the band would release three studio albums and a live recording – the rest of course is Zebra history.
Continue reading “The DVD” by Zebra
Artist: Rick Wakeman
Title: “The Other Side Of Rick Wakeman”
Label: Music Video Distributors
Release Date: 8/28/2007
“How many keyboardists does it take to change a light bulb” or “why did the keyboardist cross the road” are some of the questions that you might find yourself asking as you watch this candid and intimate performance by legendary keyboard wizard Rick Wakeman. The video finds the Yes legend in front of a studio audience where he performs several compositions of his own along with some cover material on the Grand Piano. The aspect of this is interesting enough as Wakeman strips down the compositions to the bare essential roots with the end result being quite a pleasing experience. It’s very different indeed to hear and see Rick perform on the piano as opposed to the multiple levels of synthesizers he is most associated with from Yes and his other projects. The film begins with Rick doing his introductory stuff and giving some idea about what the whole evening would entail for the audience in attendance but here is where it gets all the more interesting. While he talks about the piece he also slips in some humorous tales and anecdotes about the song or the goings on that reflect the song as compared to his own life experiences. For example: He starts to talk about his past marriages and ex-wives before he sits to perform “The Henry Suite” and the audience response to this method is quite complimentary. His manner is pleasant and his sense of humor is quite interesting and more real since it reflects his own life and what was going on in his head to the best of his recollection.
Continue reading “The Other Side Of Rick Wakeman” by Rick Wakeman