Saturday, August 29, 2015

Concert Review: Adler Brings A New Appetite For Hard Rock To Mohegan Sun

Former Guns N Roses drummer, Steven Adler has been on a rollercoaster of extreme highs and death-defying lows. Having played on one of the biggest selling rock albums of all-time, Adler was given the world on a silver platter, but his addictions to drugs got the better of him.

After being fired from the band in 1990, he took a hiatus from music, suffering a drug-induced stroke in 1996. He once again made a presence in the music industry, but did not become a household name again until his appearance on the reality TV shows "Celebrity Rehab" and "Sober House." As Steven Adler continues to fight his addictions, he has also put together his latest, and most successful solo band entitled simply, Adler. Consisting of leading singer Jacob Bunton, guitarist Lonny Paul and bassist Johnny Martin, Adler brought some classic hard rock from the Sunset Strip to the Wolf Den at Mohegan Sun on Friday night.

With the crowd in front of the stage beginning to swell, Steven Adler and the rest of the band took up their positions, to which all except singer Jacob Bunton would remain in for the next hour. Four hits of the cymbal from Adler signaled the start of the show with the well-known Guns N Roses song "Nighttrain." Lead singer Jacob Bunton distributed great energy that flowed throughout the rest of the band as they dove into some originals from their debut album "Back From The Dead." Bunton was very talkative with the small, club-like audience, while Steven Adler smiled throughout the performance, especially during the GNR classics "Mr. Brownstone" and "Rocket Queen."

Not until the electrifying guitar solo at the close of "Blown Away" did you realize the full talents of Bunton, as he covered the stage, showing off his guitar skills. After the quick, punk-like feel of "Habit," a very well-known, behind the head guitar intro signaled everyone to get on their feet, let loose and sing along to the GNR hit "Sweet Child O' Mine."

After a very quick break, another well-known guitar intro raised the energy in the Wolf Den with an spirited performance of "Welcome To The Jungle." Bunton made sure to involve everyone as he ventured out into the audience to get everyone singing along to the chorus. As eighty-minutes quickly passed, Steven Adler and his band stood on stage, excited by what the future holds as he thanked everyone for giving his dream another chance.

A new Adler album is to be released early next year and with recent rumors surrounding the reuniting of the original line-up of Guns N Roses, Steven Adler is now in the drivers seat. The grin that dons his face now has meaning behind it as he may still be writing the best chapter of his musical career.

Setlist: Nighttrain, Own Worse Enemy, Back From The Dead, Mr. Brownstone, The One That You Hated, Good To Be Bad, Waterfall, Rocket Queen, Dead Wrong, Blown Away, Habit, Sweet Child O' Mine
Encore: Welcome To The Jungle

Friday, August 28, 2015

CD Review: New Music From Metal Blade Records Artists Act Of Defiance, The Black Dahlia Murder And Blood Divisions

From California comes the debut album from heavy metal band Act Of Defiance entitled "Birth And The Burial." It is the latest project from former Megadeth guitarist Chris Broderick, who invited along fellow Megadeth drummer Shawn Drover and Shadows Fall bassist Matt Banchand to join him. The lead vocals on the album were provided by former Scar The Martyr singer Henry Derek, who was chosen out of 30 or so heavy metal vocalist to complete this heavy metal supergroup. The new ten-song release begins with the appropriately titled song "Throwback," as their sound certain gives you a feeling of the early thrash metal days as the band's shear force will blow you away. They mix-up the tempo with the dark tones of "Legion Of Lies," but they never let up with the fast-paced attack of "Thy Lord Belial" and "Dead Stare." Act Of Defiance does lets up on the speed momentarily to feature the amazing musicianship of "Poison Dream," led by Broderick's amazing fretboard work. The album finishes with the title song "Birth And The Burial," which actually sounds the most like Broderick and Drover's former band. To find out more about Act Of Defiance and their latest release "Birth And The Burial," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/actofdefiancemusic.

One of the top death metal bands in the world, The Black Dahlia Murder, return with their latest release on Metal Blade Records entitled "Abysmal." The band's popularity has grown with each new album and this one is sure not to disappoint. Beginning with the thunderous, machine-gun rhythm of "Receipt," the music gets thrown into overdrive right from the start. They blast their way through "Vlad, Son Of The Dragon," while the title-song "Abysmal" delivers the perfect death metal anthem. They get the adrenaline pumping with the quick-pace of "Threat Level No. 3," then bring on the slow-paced "Stygiophobic" in order to showcase their diversity. The album closes with the grand death metal delivery of "That Cannot Die Which Eternally Is Dead." The Black Dahlia Murder will be heading up to Canada in October before hitting some dates in the U.S. To find out more about their new album "Abysmal," please visit tbdmofficial.com.
 
Finally, we get the new two-song EP from the heavy metal supergroup Blood Divisions, lead by vocalist Chris Jericho. The album features members from bands like Nasty Savage, Testament, Obituary, Six Feet Under and others. Both songs on this release are covers, the first being the Nasty Savage track "The Morgue." Nasty Savage guitarist Dave Austin asked Jericho to lay down the vocals for this nine-minute goth-metal epic number. The other song is an almost spot-on rendition of The Scorpions' classic "Top Of The Bill" from their 1976 album "In Trance." Proceeds from the sale of this EP will benefit the Rock & Rescue charity. To find out more about Blood Divisions, check out their Facebook page at facebook.com/Blooddivisions.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

CD Review: Randall Bramblett Conjures Up "Devil Music" With New Release

American born singer/songwriter/musician Randall Bramblett will be releasing his new studio album "Devil Music" on September 18th through New West Records. The album features special appearances from guitarists Mark Knopfler and Derek Trucks as well as pianist Chuck Leavell. Bramblett explains that the album was inspired by Howlin' Wolf's biography "Moanin' At Midnight" and how Wolf used to play "Devil Music."
 
The new eleven song release begins with the album's first single "Dead In The Water," which features Mark Knopfler on guitar. The song's dark chugging blues rhythm is highlighted by Knopfler pealing off guitar riffs whenever there is an opening in the song. Bramblett sounds like the veteran blues man in the title-song, "Devil Music," while "Bottom Of The Ocean" has a bigger, gospel-like quality to its delivery. Slide-guitarist extraordinaire Derek Trucks accentuates Bramblett's falsetto vocals in "Angel Child," while former Allman Brothers Band pianist Chuck Leavell adds some southern dixieland jazzy soul to "Reptile Pilot." Randall Bramblett returns to his rock roots with "Strong Love," before finishing with the slow blues of "Ride" and the R&B flavor of "Missing Link."
 
Following the release of the album, Randall Bramblett with be heading out on the road for a couple months. For a complete list of dates and to find out more about his new album "Devil Music," please visit his website at randallbramblett.com.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Vinyl Review: Nirvana's Greatest Hits Gets New Release On Vinyl And On Blu-ray Audio

Seattle grunge band Nirvana have sold millions of records and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014. All these amazing feats were completed following the death of frontman Kurt Cobain in 1994. With a new documentary based on the private life of Cobain, "Montage Of Heck," and a new soundtrack stirring up controversy about featuring unreleased Cobain recordings, Nirvana is once again a major subject in today's music news. To add to this new rise in popularity, Universal Music Enterprise (UMe) with be re-releasing the band's 2002, platinum-selling, self-titled "greatest hits" album on vinyl for the first time on August 28th.
 
The new release will be available as a 200-gram, heavyweight, 45rpm double LP vinyl set, a 150-gram, standard, 33rpm single vinyl edition and as a Blu-ray Pure Audio, high resolution release. The original fourteen song album covers the band's entire career, with "About A Girl" from their debut album "Bleach," right up until their cover of David Bowie's "The Man Who Sold The World" from their appearance on MTV unplugged. The buzz surrounding this album was the inclusion of the previously unreleased song "You Know You're Right," which was recorded at one of Cobain's final sessions with the band.
 
This latest release has Nirvana's most well-known songs sounding as good as ever and is definitely worth checking out as you will notice pieces within the songs that have been buried in early releases of this music. To find out more about this release, please visit nirvana.com.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

CD Review: Auburn Continues To Grow With "Mixed Feelings" Album

From the U.K. comes the latest release from the acoustic, Americana, roots band Auburn entitled "Mixed Feelings." They are looking to build upon the success of their last album "Nashville" (Review: jpsmusicblog.blogspot.com) which debuted at #1 on the U.K. Americana music chart.

Their new twelve song release begins with the slow jaunt of the title-song, "Mixed Feelings" as lead singer Liz Lenten works her jazzy vocals into the song. The country-blues of "New Years Day" and the gentle touch of "Friends" is an awakening to the amazing songwriting within the band. They look to pick up the pace with "Hell Hath No Fury" as Liz' sweet vocals does not match the intensity of the song's quick, country tempo. It all comes together for the sweet country twang of "Out There" and "Wood For The Trees," before closing with the folk gem "Feel The Sun." Auburn are following the release of the their new album with some live shows beginning September 11th. To find out more about their latest release "Mixed Feelings, please visit their website at auburn.org.uk.