The Metal Files

My Life. My Music. Your Voyeurism.

Posts Tagged ‘capricorn usa

Upcoming shows…

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Lots of great shows coming to the area.  So many that I have to pick and choose a little more carefully to be able to afford the ones that I really want to see.

Tomorrow night I am heading to San Antonio to see Loudness.  Saw them back in 2006 and they were great.  RIP Munetaka Higuchi.

Next Friday is Orange Goblin and Naam(!!!).  I’m not a huge OG fan but I’ve never seen them.  Naam, however, has become one of my favorite bands.  This is part of the Chaos in Tejas music festival.

There’s also the M.O.D. reunion show in late June that I am fortunate enough to be a part of as Milano asked my Motorhead tribute band to open up.

I just bought tickets earlier this week to see Armored Saint and Hirax at the Key Club in Hollywood.  Should be a fun show.  I’ve never seen Armored Saint and saw Hirax for the first time 2 years ago.  I’m really excited to see Saint.

Odin is doing a reunion show in August at The Whisky and I’ll be heading out there for that one as well.  I love Odin.  Always have.  Do a search for them on this blog site, you’ll see my inner fanboy.  haha

September sees Return To Forever coming back to Austin.  I got to see the first of their reunion shows a few years ago and it was quite mind-numbing.  Unfortunately Al Di Meola isn’t on the tour, but Frank Gambale is a competent enough player to handle the duties.  We get Jean Luc-Ponty this time as well!

Lemmy: The Movie – A Review Of Sorts

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Let’s go back to Norfolk, Virginia 2004.  My friend Jeanne introduced me to Marco who had been doing some tattoo work on her.  She kept telling me, “You should meet this guy.  He’s big into Maiden and Motorhead like you are.”  So at some random show we were introduced and just started talking about music.  When the conversation turned to Motorhead, we both stated that our favorite was the Another Perfect Day album.  That album seems to one that many people love to hate.  I think it’s flawless.  Marco said, “If I could find someone who’d let me put that cover on their back, I’d do it for free.”  Instantly my compulsive side kicked in and I said I’d do it.

So in April 2004 we started work on this major backpiece.  I clearly remember during the first session, which lasted 6 hours, Marco said he ultimately would love to get a pic of my back, him and Lemmy together.  After 88 hours of work over the course of about a year and a half, we finished it.  There were some pretty brutal sessions for both of us.

I moved to Austin, TX in 2006 and after tonight I will have seen Motorhead 4 times since I moved here.  We tried to get this photo with Lemmy 2 years ago and didn’t get it as I was balled up on the floor of my bathroom from a kidney stone.  Marco was at a titty bar with Lemmy trying to call me…no go.  Last year we got backstage at the Motorhead/Rev. Horton Heat show and I thought I’d get the photo done, this time without Marco being in town.  Again, no go.  Lemmy was elusive once again.

So last summer the producer of the The Lemmy Movie emailed me and asked my tribute band to do Ace of Spades to potentially be in the movie.  Of course we obliged.  The producers, Greg Olliver and Wes Orshoshi, was going to piece together a bunch of the tribute bands doing Ace.

A month or so ago I found out that the movie was doing the world premier at Austin’s SxSW Movie Festival.  Sweet!  The theater was 4 blocks from my house.  I called Greg to ask if we made the final cut and he said he had to trim the tribute band stuff out due to time constraints but that it may make the DVD version in the extras or something.  No worries.

So with the movie premiering here, Marco booked a flight to come in to see it and the concert.  Film Festival passes range from $500 and up.  I had no inclination to buy one of those.  The theater released some tickets for $12 with no guarantee of admission.   Festival badge holders had first come first serve right to see all films, but I figured if we got in line early enough, we may still get in.  We got in line at 4pm for the 6:45PM screening.  We were 4th and 5th in line.  The faithful!  The badge line was getting really long, going around the block and I was getting worried that we wouldn’t get in.

Lemmy, the band and the movie producers rolled up in a limo and did some interviews out front on the red carpet and then the SxSW folks let in the badge holders.  We were told that they thought everyone who wanted in would get in.  As the movie started and to the end there were still some vacant seats.  I was a bit surprised.

The movie itself was quite enjoyable.  It wasn’t so much of a chronicle of Lemmy’s life but more of the last 3 years, however there were some good flash backs to the Rocking Vicars and Hawkwind.  Lots of good cameo interviews, especially from Dave Grohl and Billy Bob Thornton.  There were a few moments when Lemmy was sitting with his son that were quite personal and nice to see.  Scott Ian has some really good stuff to add.  It was nice to see Fast Eddie and unfortunately there wasn’t a Philthy interview.

There were a few moments where you saw some emotion come from Lemmy.  It was cool to see it.  It was captured well.  The movie really shows his awesome and witty sense of humor.  When you see it, just remember, “Don’t worry, be happy.”  One of the funniest things I have ever seen.

It was also verycool to see his apartment.  It’s small, unassuming and simple.  Full of his WWI/WWII collectibles and just stuff.  Lemmy has a lot of stuff.

The only thing that I can say that I didn’t like about it was all of the Metallica footage.  I completely understand why it was there, but my long-running dislike for that band just makes me cringe when I see them talk or perform.  But…they are huge fans of Motorhead and have always been vocal about it for as long as I can remember.

So after the movie they did a quick Q&A with the producers and the band.  You could see how excited that Greg and Wes were, as they should be.  They’ve worked on this for 3 years and things like this become a labor of love.  Good work, guys!

After the Q&A, Marco and I just hung out in the theater to see if we could get the photo that we have been trying to get for years.  I was getting nervous.  I’ve been told that I “may” have backstage access for tonight’s show, but it’s not guaranteed.  I caught up with Greg and asked if he could set it up really quickly.  He told us to hit the side exit o the alley as that’s where the band was.  Security had already stopped a few folks from exiting through that door…but we made it.

The band was standing in the alley just talking and making a few jokes about the movie and Marco and I just stood a few feet from them.  Their conversation stopped and I looked at Lemmy and said, “Lem, I’ve got Another Perfect Day tattooed on my back and this is the guy who did the work.  Can we get a photo or 2?”  Thankfully he obliged.  I removed my shirt and he said, “Motherfucker.  That had to fucking hurt.  Looks great.”  We snapped 2 photos, thanked him then headed back to a bar to do a celebratory drink.

I was elated.  It felt like a weight was lifted off of both of our shoulders.  Both Marco and I endured a lot in doing this tattoo and in trying to get this photo done…and finally…por fin…done.  Boom.

So tonight…Motorhead at Stubb’s.  Can’t wait!

Written by The Metal Files

March 16, 2010 at 9:55 am

Watchtower – Energetic Disassembly (1985)

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I remember clearly the first time I saw this on cassette.  It was at the Music Man at Military Circle Mall in Norfolk, VA.  WATCHThe cover was upside down as compared to how the majority of cassette j-cards were printed.  It always struck me as odd but I always felt it was intentional, especially after listening to this album at least 100 times since I first heard it.  It certainly turned my mind upside down several times.

My friends and I were pretty shocked by this one.  Most of us were into thrash ala Overkill’s Feel the Fire, Anthrax, Testament etc…but this was something different.  Something special even.

The album opens with a frenetic frantic pace with crazy guitar riffs, insane bass lines and hyperactive drumming.  They don’t stop until the end of the album.  Mix all of this with Jason McMaster’s incredible vocals that cut through all of this madness and you have a perfect technical thrash album…perhaps the first truly technical thrash album.  Some may debate that one but for me, this is the first.

While I love every song on this album, my absolute favorites are Tyrants In Distress, Violent Change, Meltdown and Argonne Forest.  The whole band really seems to just be together and well-rehearsed.  Billy White (f. Don Dokken), Doug Keyser and Rick Colaluca just flat out lay it down on this album.  Period.

I still don’t feel that this album gets enough respect although some of the major metal players loved them such as Chuck Schuldiner (RIP) and Dream Theater.  Watchtower set the standard early for technical metal.  Their popularity is Europe still seems to be pretty strong as I believe they’re playing one of the Euro-Metal fests in 2010.  It seems that they are still pretty huge in Greece.

While Control and Resistance was a good follow-up and was partially written by Billy White, a lot changed in their sound.  Ron Jarzombek (Spastic Ink) and Allan Tecchio (Hades, Non-Fiction) do a fine job, but the loss of Jason McMaster and Billy White took them down a slightly different progressive thrash metal path.  Both albums are certainly worth owning, but I have always preferred the debut.

Watchtower is in the studio recording a new album with McMaster on vocals (!!!) and I can’t wait to hear the whole thing.  Hopefully I’ll finally get to see them live.

Living here in Austin, TX now, it is great to see how much that band is loved and respected around here.  It gives me a warm tingly feeling.  It’s also pretty incredible for me to have McMaster in my Motorhead tribute band.  He’s a talented musician all the way around and bring a lot of energy to the band on rhythm guitar and backing vocals.  Certainly one of my musical idols.

If you don’t own Energetic Disassembly and you like thrash, prog-metal, RUSH on steroids, you need to own this one.

Just do it.

“Breakdown, warning – Nuclear nightmare, reality”

Motorhead…MOTORHEAD!

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To be truthful, I’m still only a relatively new fan of Motorhead.  I never really checked them out in the 80s and never motorheadowned anything by them until the 1916 album, which I love.  I first saw them live in 1993 and really only went to see Mikkey Dee and got to hang out with him quite a bit that day.  It was seemingly a down time for them as the Peppermint Beach Club in Virginia Beach, VA may have been half full.  I’m glad to see that their popularity has gone back up in the last decade or so.

It really wasn’t until the last 10 years that I started digging deep into their repertoire and became a fan, especially of the Fast Eddie/Philthy era.  One of the first ones that I bought was the debut album, Motorhead.

I can see why a lot of the punk crowd digs this album because it really is a punk record IMHO.  I love it and it’s easily in my top 5 Motorhead albums.

Train Kept A-Rollin’ notwithstanding, this album is almost perfect.  I never cared for that song after hearing the Aerosmith version my whole life.  Blech!  But the title track, Lost Johnny, Vibrator, Keep Us On The Road, IRON HORSE/BORN TO LOSE!!!  C’mon!  Those songs are great!

Oddly enough, though, I don’t think this album gets enough credit.  Granted the production isn’t the greatest and it’s not really a heavy album, it shows their roots quite a bit.  When people ask me what I recommend to start them off on a band, generally I tell them to start at the beginning and work their way up and this is especially true with Motorhead.  The transition from this album to Overkill is perfect.  Getting the On Parole version is worthwhile as well.

Alright!

Motorhead – Concert Review 092009

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Motorhead!  I’m always excited when they come to town.  Last night was my 6th time seeing them since 1993.  They DSCN2416never let me down with the live show.

Until last night.

So let’s backtrack and put some story along with this.  If you don’t know this already, I have the Another Perfect Day album cover tattooed on my back…my whole back.  88 hours worth of tattoo work.  No regrets!  I’ve met Lemmy a few times but not since getting my backpiece done.  I was hoping last night would be the night.  Just wanted a picture of him with my tattoo.  Didn’t happen.  No big deal, I can live with that.  Like I said, met him a few times and always a good experience.

So my guitar player, Doug Morrison, (Turbin, Waysted) and the drummer of Reverend Horton Heat have been close friends since the late 70s and with the Rev on this tour, we got the hookup.  Doug and I get there early and have dinner with Paul Simmons (drummer for the Rev) and some of the roadcrew guys from Rev Heat and Motorhead.  The guy sitting next to me was pretty special though.  It was Hobbs!  Hobbs has been with the band for almost 30 years and is mentioned in the song Going to Brazil.  I think he may even be the one who screams on We Are The Roadcrew from No Sleep Till Hammersmith.  Not important.  Hobbs!  Talk about a weathered old British soul.  He was extremely polite in a typical British sort of way yet as foul mouthed as an old Greek sea captain.  He was awesome!  Hobbs!

After dinner we headed backstage.  Nashville Pussy was setting up their gear and there it was…Lemmy’s bass rack.  From a distance I snap a picture and Paul says, “Come on, man.  Step over here and get a real look at them.”  His beautiful Rickenbacker 4004LK and one of his old Rics with the original hand-carved oak leaves.   I got to hold history in my hands!  And I couldn’t believe how high the action was on those.  Seemingly about 3/8″ off of the fretboard.

So after hyperventilating over that a bit, we all just hung out backstage while Nashville Pussy played.  I’ve never been a fan so I had no interest in seeing them.  Paul was telling the Motorhead roadcrew guys about my backpiece and they flipped out over it.  “Lemmy needs to see this!”  Yes sir, I agree!

NP finishes their set and Paul had to get prepared for the Reverend Horton Heat set.  Doug and I stayed backstage a little longer.  Matt Sorum, (GnR, The Cult, Velvet Revolver) came in and said hi.  I mentioned that I had just seen his episode of the Dog Whisperer.  “Did Ace and I look like total idiots?”   No man, you guys were fine, no worries.  Apparently he hadn’t seen it yet.  The dude is a class act even if I never cared for his other bands.

So after that, Doug and I just went out in to the crowd to watch the Rev’s set.  As always, they were tight.  The Rev works the crowd very well.  I opened for them back in like 93 or 94 and he’s still the same old cool laid back guy.

The gig was at Stubb’s in Austin, TX.  It’s an amphitheater type set up.  I’ve never really cared for it all that much.  Too narrow and when it gets packed it’s difficult to get around.  So we hung out towards the back.  Run into several friends, of course.  Ran into my other guitarist, Jason McMaster (Broken Teeth, Watchtower, Dangerous Toys) and he says, “Hey man!  You need to meet an old friend of mine, Craig Behrhorst.”  I said, “From Ruffians?”  Craig said, “How did you know that?”  Sir, I am an 80s metal nerd.  Plain and simple.  Turned out that Doug knew him as well.  I guess Craig’s sister used to hang out with Doug and his friends back in the old Sunset Strip days.  I also ran into Art Villareal and Bob Catlin, both of SA SLayer/Juggernaut fame.  They are both in Martyhead, a Motorhead tribute from San Antonio.  Of course I have a Motorhead tribute here in town called Capricorn USA.   That’s the band with Doug and Jason.

Whatever, you don’t care.  You want to know about the Motorhead show!

Light’s go down and they open with Iron Fist.  Sweet!  I love that song.  But I swear it sounded a little slower than album speed.  Stay Clean was next.  Same thing.  The band was tight.  Sorum held his own pretty well for the whole night but they really seemed lifeless to me.  Everything seemed slow.  To be honest I was bored until mid-set when they played a few tracks from Another Perfect Day.  Matt’s drumming on everything was pretty good.  Who knew the guy could play double bass?  But then, they played Ace of Spades.  Of course everyone knows that songs and the drunks in the crowd and the kids who only know it from Guitar Hero were freaking out.  Matt’s drumming killed it.  His bass drum pattern was all wrong.  It put the song in a weird dynamic.  I recently saw a vid from one of the shows a few weeks ago with him and it was the same thing.  I hate to say it (again), but I was so bored for most of their show.  They were missing a key element to their modern sound…MIKKEY DEE.

Mikkey’s a phenomenal drummer.  I’ve known it since I first heard King Diamond’s Abigail and got to experience his playing live on the Them tour.  Mikkey was the main reason why I ever went to see Motorhead the very first time in 1993.  I wasn’t into them at all at that point and oddly enough I don’t like but a handful of songs from his era.  But the live show with him is intense.  If you’ve seen him play, you get it.  He’s a monster.  And with Motorhead, he certainly tightened them up.  They were always fast, vicious.  “We may not be the best band in the world, but we’re certainly the fastest” Lemmy said years and years ago on their famous No Sleep TIll Hammersmith album.

Last night they weren’t fast.  There was just no electricity.  Sometimes I think I am just getting old and crotchety.  I do tend to get hyper-critical when it comes to live shows, but I’ve always been that way.  I can never just sit back and enjoy it, I always have to dissect it.  Oh well.  My problem, not yours, eh?

The setlist was pretty good overall, it was just the feel and the pace of the songs that got to me.  Most people I know loved it and I am glad they had a good time.  I did too, actually.  I got to see some people I hadn’t seen in a while and got to meet a few new folks.

Setlist:

Iron Fist
Stay Clean
Be My Baby
Rock Out
Metropolis
Over the Top
One Night Stand
I Got Mine
The Thousand Names of God
Another Perfect Day
In the Name of Tragedy
Just ‘Cos You Got the Power
Going to Brazil
Killed by Death
Bomber
Whorehouse Blues
Ace of Spades
Overkill

Sure Lem’s in his 60s now and not everyone can do it like they used to. No matter the performance from last night, I’ll always go see them.  It’s Motorhead!

He said something last night that I heard him say the previous 2 times I saw them, “Don’t forget us.”

That line saddens me.

After all, who ever could?