The Metal Files

My Life. My Music. Your Voyeurism.

Archive for the ‘riot’ Category

Joe Lynn Turner & Blackfoot Concert Review, San Antonio, TX, August 20, 2016

leave a comment »

I had a ticket and flight booked to see Joe Lynn Turner (JLT) at the Whisky in West Hollywood a couple of months ago and had to cancel the trip.  That was a major bummer.  That blow got lessened recently when Sean McNabb, bassist for George Lynch, mentioned to me that he was also playing with JLT and that they were playing in San Antonio.  Shortly after that Lynch show, the JLT show was announced.

Also announced was Blackfoot as the opener.  A quick check to see who was still in the band led me to their website which showed that they had no original members but were still managed by Ricky Medlocke.  Alright then.  I’ve never been a big fan fan of southern rock although hearing Strikes takes me back to being a kid as one of best friends, Petey, always loved that record.

After some time bouncing around San Antonio record stores, Rodney and I grabbed some dinner then headed to the venue to meet up with Matt who had tickets for another friend, Diego, and me.  The weather was complete shit.  The show was originally scheduled to be outside rain or shine but the rain was pretty heavy and it was moved inside.  Upon walking in, the place was packed, uncomfortably so.  I stayed inside for part of Seance’s set then just decided to wait out Blackfoot outside.  I could hear them perfectly and they were solid.  This new lineup had been together for 4 years.  It was weird after seeing them arrive to think that they were Blackfoot.  They looked like kids and 2 of the guys in the band were sporting mohawks.  Even prior to them finishing their set, I noticed some people leaving making comments about the lineup as they were walking out.

Then it was time for JLT.  I was pretty excited since I hadn’t seen him since he sang on Odyssey tour with Yngwie Malmsteen, one of my favorite concerts ever.  The band hit the stage to a thinned out crowd opening with the snippet of Over the Rainbow and going right in Death Alley Driver. The band was tight and Joe’s voice sounded great.  I Surrender and Power were up next.  The crowd was really into it.  Unfortunately they were plagued with some technical difficulties throughout the night but they worked through them and completely rocked.  Street of Dreams was a highlight as were Stone Cold, Spotlight Kid and Malmsteen’s Rising Force.  JLT has Steve Brown from Trixter on guitar and he was pretty damned good, even handled the Yngwie guitar solo pretty well.  It was a fun set.

After the show was the meet and greet with Joe.  It was inexpensive and I wanted Joe added to The Book.  They were letting us in 2 at a time and Matt and I went in together towards the end of the line.  Joe was very talkative and inquisitive about the patches on our jackets.  He was loving Matt’s Riot patch and mentioned how much he had loved that band since their early days.  I mentioned as I was pulling out The Book that I brought Riot’s Privilege of Power CD cover with me.  “Whoa, let me see that.  I haven’t thought about this one in years.”  I mentioned seeing the 1988 Yngwie show at The Boathouse and he said, “I remember that place.  A bit of a dump.”  Most bands say that.  haha.  We talked briefly about his time with Yngwie and both agreed that there should have been a second album with him on vocals.  While finishing up the signing and photos, I mentioned that he was my favorite singer for Rainbow.  I know that is not a popular opinion but whatever.  Totally true.  I like the Dio era a lot but it’s the JLT era for me any day.  He was also quite pleased to see the Odyssey album.

What a great show although I’d prefer not to see another show at this venue.

 

 

Riot V Concert Review, Detroit, MI, July 9, 2016

leave a comment »

And away I go to Detroit.  That was a long drive on minimal sleep.  I booked a hotel while I had stopped for breakfast at a truck stop.  As soon as I arrived to my hotel in Romulus, MI right by the airport, I took a shower and a quick nap.  I had a bunch of things I wanted to do and see that day but was just too wiped out to do them all.  The only thing I did do was to see my old friend Nikki.  We met in 1999 or 2000, went on a couple of dates and just ended up quickly becoming close friends.  We recorded an album together in 2002(?) and had seen each other since about 2004.  It was great to see her and her fiancee, laugh about old times and just be around her.  She’s always been one of the most positive people I’ve ever known.

From there I went back to the hotel to catch a Lyft ride up to the Token Lounge in Westland, MI.  I arrived right when the opener was starting.  I hadn’t eaten since breakfast and was getting hungry.  I noticed a pizza place on the end of the building and as I was leaving to go grab a slice or two, the door guy said, “No re-entry.”  I didn’t notice the sign when I had walked in.  He said to just phone in the order and they’ll walk it down.  I was about to do just that then he said, “Fuck it, there’s no one here yet, just go.”  Sweet.  The pizza place was called “Krustyzz.”  I ordered it to go and took it back to the bar.  They had some hightop tables behind the soundboard in an area that was separated by glass.  It was nice to sit and eat and not be blasted out.  The pizza was greasy but delicious.

The opener was called SixE SixE (Sixe Sixe?).  I don’t know.  They were pretty awful.  Not sure if they were a brand new band or what, but it wasn’t solid at all and the 2 songs I heard sounded like 90s style hard rock.  Glad I missed most of their set.  Terminus was up next.  Unfortunately it wasn’t the Irish band of the same name.  These guys were pure new metal and even covered Lamb of God.  I almost threw up my pizza.  Guitar players were good, though.  Heard a few solos that were impressive.  There came Acoustic Hell.  It was everything you’d think it was with that name.  Three acoustic guitars, a guy 50ish yrs old in flip flops and his hat on backwards and a female backup singer.  They played stuff like Crazy Train, Screaming in the Night and some other stuff that I couldn’t care about.  Luckily my pal Ryan showed up and I hung out with him and his friends on the back patio for the rest of their set.  Wulfhook was up next.  I neither loved nor hated them at Ragnarokkr and my reaction was the same at this show.  I’m not sure what it is that doesn’t quite catch my ear.  Singer has a powerful range, the rest of the band is solid and competent, but I’m just not into them.  Then…THEN, they did an encore version of Powerslave.  Maiden is my favorite band ever and I am picky about hearing cover versions of their music.  They played it pretty well then I heard, “When the life givers die.”  Not just once, but every time that section was played.  WTF.  No.

Riot time.  Thankfully.  They played the same set as the night before, flawlessly.  Such a powerful band to watch.  The crowd was considerably smaller, though.  Maybe a 100 people or so when they took the stage and it cleared out little by little throughout their set.  But I enjoyed it just as much.

After the show, the bar didn’t kick anyone out and we got to hang out.  It was drummer, Frank Gilchrist’s birthday, so we did a shot of whisky together.  I didn’t get to talk to him much at the Chicago show, but we caught up for quite a bit on Saturday.  He’s a good dude for sure.  I also got some one on one time with Mike Flyntz.  I requested Maryanne to get added to the set and he said that it’s the most requested song that they get.  I’d also like to hear more from the Mike Demeo era.  He was super cool as always and thanked me for making the trip.  As I was going over to talk with Donnie, he introduced me to his merch guy.  I saw him in Chicago and thought he looked familiar but couldn’t place it.  It was Giles Lavery who sang for Warlord for a little while.  I was shocked to see him and it was great to finally meet him in person.  What a great guy.  We talked for a while and had a beer.  He mentioned that his main band, Dragonsclaw, had a new album coming out.  It was quite a great night.  That venue is really cool, too.  Medium sized, great staff, great sound.  I’d like to visit the area again and hopefully that trip can coincide with a show here.

Sunday morning I just popped into a record store before heading to an airport.  I got a Paul Stanley shirt which just has the ’77 solo album cover on it with no lettering.  The store was certainly into ICP as their merch was everywhere and even a sign out front stating that they had tickets to the juggalo gathering.  Ha.

Twas a great weekend overall getting to see a band that I love in 2 other cities.

 

Written by The Metal Files

July 11, 2016 at 3:38 pm

Riot V Concert Review, Chicago, IL, July 8, 2016

leave a comment »

I like Riot/Riot V.  All incarnations.  Period.  They’ve never released a bad album.  Some better than others, but never a bad one.

I ran into their bassist, Donnie Van Stavern, at a RUSH tribute show in San Antonio a few weeks ago and asked him about upcoming shows.  He mentioned the Chicago and Detroit shows and I checked my concert calendar and my Southwest account and took the decision to just go.  He said he’d hook me up with guestlist for both shows, so that was an added bonus.

I left for Chicago Friday morning on a direct flight, got there, grabbed my rental car and headed straight to the north side of town to pick up Bob, one of the organizers of the Ragnarokkr festival.  He graciously offered up his place for the night.  We headed first to Metal Haven Grill and I pigged out on their tasty Italian beef and a char polish sausage.  It was entirely too much food but it was delicious.  You gotta go if you’re ever in Chicago.  Their record and CD selection is ever expanding and there is a ton of great original heavy metal artwork on display, mind-numbingly so.  From there we went to one of the locations of Reckless Records.  I didn’t find anything but it was a cool place.  Afterwards we headed back to Bob’s.  I changed clothes and off we went to the red line EL train to Reggie’s.

We got in and I saw a couple of folks I knew from the area that I had met at previous Ragnarokkr shows.  Crusader was the opening act and they played the whole time I was upstairs at Record Breakers store where I bought a bunch of albums to have shipped back to Texas.  Didn’t hear a note of them so I can’t comment.  Scars of Armageddon were on next and they were a proggy/power metal/slight hint of nu-metal band with excellent guitar work and a good singer.  I’d never buy an album by them but wouldn’t be upset to see them again.  Direct support for Riot was a local Judas Priest tribute band called Judas Rising.  Pass.  I mean, sure, they sounded alright although their singer I think would sound better doing a Di’Anno era Maiden tribute.  I don’t know, I just wasn’t feeling it at all.

After a quick set change, the lights go down and you hear the taped live version of Narita and then Frank leads in with the drum into to Flight of the Warrior.  The crowd of 200+ was into it, singing every word.  They then went into Ride Hard, Live Free from the latest album and then Fight or Fall.  I was on the stage left side where Van Stavern and Lance Barnewold (filling in for Nick Lee for this mini tour) we located.  Lance is Nick’s perfect replacement.  Both guys have flawless execution of riffs and solos.  They mix the set up with old and new songs.  The whole band was great.  I also appreciated getting handed the bottle of tequila from Donnie a couple of times.  And just let me say this, Todd Michael Hall is one of the best singers in metal out there right now.  That guy’s range is phenomenal.  He’s really just a freak of nature vocally like Harry Conklin and Mike Soliz.  It was great to hear Black Leather and Glittering Steel in the set as well.  They did 6 from Thundersteel including my fave, Johnny’s Back.

At the end of their set, Todd announced that they’d com out to the merch booth right after a quick break.  Two minutes after that, Reggie’s staff was kicking everyone out.  It wasn’t even 1:30 AM yet.  So we just hung out on the street with the locals friends and then went around to their back door to shoot the breeze with Donnie, Mike and Lance.  During their set, I took a pick of Lance and posted it on NIck’s Facebook page with the words, “Fake Nick is getting it done.”  haha.

It was a great show but I was beat so we hopped on the train back to Bob’s.  We got delayed at one stop because of some dude raising hell at the stand and not letting the doors close.  The guy sitting across from me woke up and said, “Fucking crackies!”  A few moments we were on our way.

I got to sleep around 4AM but I didn’t sleep well at all.  I was up and ready to go by 745AM, said adios to Bob and was on my almost 5hr drive to Detroit.

click fotos

 

Written by The Metal Files

July 11, 2016 at 2:26 pm

Riot – Immortal Soul Review

with one comment

I’ve talked about Riot more than once on this site and about how I really love the Thundersteel era over the Fire Down Under era.  Don’t get me wrong, FDU is a great album and extremely influential, but I prefer the more metal/powermetal version of Riot, partially because of Bobby Jarzombek.

I was fortunate enough to see the Riot reunion show in June of 2009 in San Antonio.  It was quite special.  They mentioned at that show that a new album would be forthcoming, then I believe Tony Moore left…then came back.  Great news!

Once the album buzz started getting posted around the web, it got me excited.  I love this band with Moore on vocals.  He sounded really good live in 09.  I finally got the album via iTunes a while back after hearing a few songs that had been posted around the YouTube and such and liked what I heard.

Upon getting the full version, I gave it several listens, at least 15 now.  This is a strong album and well worth owning if you’re a fan of that era of the band’s music.  Bobby Jarzombek shows off his amazing skills as expected.  That guy is awesome, period.  The guitar work is really good, some of the best I’ve ever heard from Reale.  I assume that Flyntz is doing some of the solos too, but not 100% sure.

Lyrically it’s what you would expect.  They obviously made an effort to make this sound like the followup to Thundersteel and not necessarily the followup to Privilege of Power.  The songs are strong and some have their fair amount of lyrical cheese, but it works well.  It’s a fun album.

If I had to make a complaint, it would be on the vocals.   To my ears there sounds like a lot of fixes to Tony’s vocals.  Lots of harmonizer.  It does get annoying in spots but generally doesn’t detract from the album as a whole.

Highlight tracks for me would be Still Your Man (which is basically Johnny’s Back pt 2), Riot, Sins of the Father, Fall Before Me, Wings are for angels.

If you don’t have this album yet, get it.  8/10

Written by The Metal Files

December 18, 2011 at 5:44 pm

Evil United – S/T Album Review

leave a comment »

I’ve been meaning to post my review of this one for months now.  I was given an advanced copy  and have even seen them live 3 or 4 times now, but yet, no review.  So here it is.  Who is Evil United you may ask?  Evil United features some legendary dudes like Jason McMaster (Broken Teeth, Dangerous Toys, ex-Watchtower, Ignitor etc), Don Van Stavern (Riot, SA Slayer, Pitbull Daycare), JohnValenzuela (Pitbull Daycare), TC Connally and Json West (Muderdolls, Sebastian Bach).  Not  a shabby group of folks to get together and make a band, eh?

This album is…well…this album is HEAVY.  Very heavy.   From beginning to end it’s in your face.  McMaster’s vocals go from his shrill to a good tenor backed with power.  I really like it when he’s in his lower registers.    It’s a nice change and he’s got a great clean voice which he has used with Ignitor.

The band is as solid as it gets.  The riffs are tight and the drums are as solid as you would want.  In a live setting this band is especially tight.  Again, the drummer is a badass.  The styles on this album flash from old school thrash and some power metal to some nu-metal sounds with some homage to Pantera.  The production is the one thing that bothers me on this.  It’s a bit too clean and the drums are overtriggered (at least they sound that way to my ears).  But that’s my opinion.  I want all albums to sound like an old Omen record.  haha

Highlight tracks include Walking to Sodom, Dawn of Armageddon, Rise and Fall of Earth and Man, Blasphemer and Hexorcism.

If you need a dose of heavy that’s not of the normal cookie cutter brand, I recommend this album for you.  And thankfully there’s no screamo/growling/cookie monster vocals.  It’s a nice change of pace.

You can stream the whole album on their Reverbnation page.

Thrash!

8/10

Written by The Metal Files

September 27, 2011 at 6:47 pm

Riot – Fight or Fall & Outlaw videos from 6/2/09 in San Antonio

with one comment

I filmed these in San Antonio.  My camera sucks.  Read the show review here.

Turn your audio down a bit as the sound is a bit distorted.

Written by The Metal Files

June 11, 2009 at 9:32 pm

Concert Review – RIOT – San Antonio – 6/2/09

with 7 comments

So let’s go back in time…

I remember somewhere around 1984ish and I was over at Daniel’s house for a bit and we would go into his brother’s room and check out his records and cool Kramer Baretta guitars.  I remember seeing Riot’s Fire Down Under (probably on cassette) and we listened to some of it.  I think we only listened to Swords and Tequila as his brother’s band used to cover that song.  I thought it was cool but never really explored them any further.

Flash forward to sometime in 1988.  I was over at Kelz’ house and we stepped outside into Thomas’ car, the 4dr Chevy Cavalier, beige/crème color.  He pulled out Riot’s Thundersteel tape and said “You have to hear this.”  I was reluctant and explained to him that I saw the record at Skinnie’s recently and that the album cover looked too silly to even give them a chance, not to mention their photo on the back.  WTF?  In perfect Thomas fashion he cut me off and said, “Just shut the fuck up and listen to it asshole.”

Thank you Thomas.

I was blown away by it, mainly by the drums.  The only other drummer that I heard play similar styles to this was Deen Castronovo.  It was shortly after getting into this era of riot that I met Deen and asked if Bobby Jarzombek was his pupil.  Deen just replied with, “I wish I could lay claim to that.  That kid is good.”  Yes, Deen, very good.  Back to Thundersteel, this album has great hooks and melodies, not to mention the insane drumming by Bobby, Tony Moore’s almost-out-of-control vocals and Mark Reale’s great solos.  I should mention Mark Edward’s competent drumming on the LP as well.  Nothing too flashy, but solid.  The only song I never cared about was Run For Your Life.  It just seemed too stiff.  Since 1988 this album has stayed in steady listening rotation.  I also picked up the follow-up album Privilege of Power.  There are some blazing songs on there and Bobby J just simply owns that record.

Flash forward again to early May 2009.  I saw online that Riot was performing a one-off show in their partial home of San Antonio and expected it to sell out as they don’t play very often and especially with this line-up, the reunited Thundersteel era band.  So I bought 2 tickets the morning they went on sale, one for THE Doug Morrison and one for me.

So I go to Doug’s after work yesterday and we have some dinner at his house.  The doors were at 7pm and we had about an hour of drive time each way.  Since it was only about 6pm at this point, I went down into our studio and took a 45 minute nap as I was super tired from being up in the middle of the night with a sick cat.  After my little nap, we hop in the car and head to SA.  I was happy of the fact that Jason McMaster’s Broken Teeth were added to the bill but we assumed that they would be the opener of the 4 bands and we figured we would miss them.  Jason is one of my best friends and it’s no biggie for him if we missed the show.  Both he and Doug are in the Motorhead tribute band with me, so we see each other plenty.

We arrived at the show around 8:15pm and I noticed that the crowd was very light in attendance.  I figured since it was still early that people were waiting to come out.  We saw the Broken Teeth guys when we walked in and gave our usual pleasantries and they said they were moved into the slot right before Riot.  Great news!  It meant that we would have on less shitty band to sit through until seeing a band that we liked.  A local band called Eden Burning opened the show and we missed them completely.  From what I was it was no loss.  Top Dead Center played next.  Apparently their singer has another band with Riot’s Don van Stavern called Pitbull Daycare.  Whatever.  TDC wasn’t very good in general.  The highlight of their performance was their drummer.  That guy was rock solid.  I was glad when they were done.  Broken Teeth took the stage and did what they do best, they rocked.  Jason has got to be one of the most underrated front men in rock and roll.  He knows how to grab a crowd’s attention and keep it.  Before they went on, it was cool seeing people who have known him since the Watchtower days.  I am not sure he has ever made an enemy.  The crowd got into Broken Teeth and I am sure most of the folks there had never seen them.  It was a bit ironic that the club uses Dangerous Toys’ old road cases for side stage monitor stands.

By the time that Broken Teeth finished, there may have been 250 people there, certainly no more than that.  I was shocked.  The legendary Riot.  At Home.  Thundersteel lineup.  Sure it was a Tuesday night but c’mon.  The ONLY American show!  WTF?!

So Riot is setting up, erm…their roadies are setting up.  They put this projector on a stand on the stage and Doug and I were trying to figure out if they were going to keep that on stage for the whole show.  Luckily is was just there for their intro and promptly removed.

So the lights go down and the band sans Tony Moore get on stage and play an instrumental assuredly from one of their older albums.  I’m not that familiar with the pre-Thundersteel stuff…yet.

After the instrumental, Moore comes out and they go into Fight or Fall.  His voice is still strong after all these years but he was struggling in some parts and understandably so.  His vocals on that old stuff are pretty high ranged in places.  But in general he sounded fine for the night.  Mark Reale played great and does good backing vocals.    Mike Flynt’s playing was good too.  He did a few solos and he’s a really solid player.  His vocals harmonies were really really good.  I didn’t care for Van Stavern’s tone in the least.  He was playing what looked like a higher end Ibanez bass through an Ampeg rig (ugh).  It sounded like ass.  Seriously.

But most impressively the highlight of the night for me was Bobby Jarzombek’s drumming.  Sure, I’ve known for 20+ years that he was a phenomenal player but you really can’t grasp it until you see him play live.  I saw him with Halford in 2000 in Brooklyn @ Lamour’s Rock Club and he was awesome there too…but not as awesome as he was last night.  His performance was seemingly flawless.  He can do anything.  He really reminds me a lot of how I think Stewart Copeland would play if he was in a metal band and could play double bass.  The handwork is incredible.  I really think Bobby is the best drummer in metal nowadays.  That is difficult for me to say as a HUGE Gene Hoglan fan.  Hoglan and Van Williams (Nevermore) are probably the only guys who can play this style and retain a feel in their playing.  Guys like Mike Portnoy can play it, but have no feel.  Boring.

We ran into Ron Jarzombek after the show and I just shook his hand and said hello.  Doug met him 25+ years ago when he took Dave McClain (SA Slayer/Sacred Reich/Machinehead) out of San Antonio to come play with him in LA in Neil Turbin’s post-Anthrax band.  It took Ron a second to remember then he said, “Oh yeah, I do remember now.  Wow.  Been a long time.”  Then we left.  We drove through one of the scariest lightning storms I have ever seen.  It’s not very often that I get nervous in a storm but I was nervous last night.  Doug was too but we made it back to his place safely and subsequently I was home safely shortly thereafter.

Overall the night was great.  I needed a night like that.  June 2 is a day that lives in infamy for me and in the week leading up to it every year I tend to get a little down.  But there was no time for such feelings last night.  It was a positive night and we had fun.  The only real drawback about the show was that Riot had no merch to sell and I really wanted a shirt.  Oh well.

I shot some video and snapped a few pics.  I’ll try and post them later.  Unfortunately my camera ran out of battery right as I was ready to film Johnny’s Back.  Keep an eye on Youtube as I am sure there will be a lot of footage from the show.

Here’s the setlist in order:

Narita (Instrumental intro)
Fight or Fall
On Your Knees
Metal Soldiers
Speedin’
Johnny’s Back
Crimson Storm
Swords and Tequila
Wings are for Angels (from their forthcoming album)
Tokyo Rose/Rock City
Flight of the Warrior
Bloodstreets
Storming the Gates of Hell/Race with the Devil/Storming the Gates of Hell
Road Racin’/Killer(no lyrics)/Road Racin’
Dance of Death
Thundersteel
————-
Warrior