Pick Your Rock and Metal

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Volbeat gig cancelled :(

Unfortunately this Friday's Volbeat show has been cancelled. Refunds are available from point of purchase.

Here's the official statement from the band:
"After a strenuous sold-out tour across main land Europe and Scandinavia, Volbeat are forced to cancel their first week of UK shows. The band did personally not want to cancel this tour but unfortunately Michael Poulsen was ordered by doctors not to fly or travel until his medical condition is stabilized to doctors’ satisfaction.

"At this moment Michael Poulsen is currently under doctor’s supervision and a full recovery is expected within time to be able to pursue engagements from mid next week.
Beyond Hell / Above Heaven

Saturday, November 20, 2010

True cause of recession revealed - hard rock and heavy metal

ECONOMISTS have been agonising over the slump in retail spending, despairing as to why shop receipts have been tumbling, and rending their hair working out where all the money in the economy has gone.

Traditional economic theories have been junked, the bank bail-out didn't really cost that much and we can't blame the Tories for everything (just almost everything).

Thankfully the ghosts or Thomas Malthus and Adam Smith have arisen from the crypts, rattling the abacus of doom and the spreadsheets of satan, with the answer.

It's all the fault of hard rock and heavy metal.

The micro-economy that constitutes rock and metal is sucking vast amounts of cash in, with then result that retail stores are no longer able to keep their doors open and distraught telesales have threatened to strangle themselves with their headsets.

Some examples of this economic malaise have surfaced this week. Tickets go on sale for Iron Maiden at the Odyssey in mere hours, then there's Journey, Foreigner (Odyssey, June 12th) and Rush (O2, Dublin May 12th) and the plethora of gigs from The Distortion Project, the Diamond Rock Club and too many others to mention.

Credit card transactions have ceased to be the preserve of panicky parents of toddlers and pre-teens; now the credit and debit cards sit poised by the keyboard or the phone awaiting the next gig announcement.

Of course, if it were just the tickets the effect on the economy would be vast, but not crippling. But, then there is the monetary substitute sometimes referred to as beer tokens that is sucking cold hard cash out of the system. And this is not to mention the curreconfused merchandise exchange rate causing havoc on the bond and future markets!

To ease fears of meltdown for the global economy there is only on solution: a delegation led by Lemmy, Helfield, Harris and Iommi should be received by the International Monetary Fund, and the European Bank.

Their proposal will be simple: 10% of ticket sales in Ireland (north and south) for the next two years will be used to bail out the global economy. That will have the effect of wiping out the UK, Irish, Spanish and Greek debts. The delegation will have only two pre-conditions. These are: disembowel "that c**t Cowell" (Copyright Jake Burns, SLF) and shoot on sight all Strictly C**ts Dancing.

There - with the global economic crisis solved I can now move into complete panic mode: how in the name of all that is diabolically satanically majestic is an hard working fan of Lucifer's own soundtrack going to afford all these glorious concerts both in terms of money and time?

One could sell a (moderately abused) kidney, but eBay have cracked down on that sort of thing...
Sell sperm to needy women wanting children (should have thought of that before the vasectomy!)
Sell my body (would have to be for medical science as no self-respecting homo sapiens would want it for anything else)
...ahh feck it, there's no hope! Will just have to hope that Lord Hetfield and Lemmy have remembered to rig the Lotto for me tomorrow night!

So: even though I've not been keeping up here's as many upcoming gigs that my beer saddled brain cares to recall at this time of the night:
  • Diamond Head
  • Exodus
  • Decapitated
  • Toby Jepson
  • WASP
  • Airbourne
  • Entombed
  • Nile
  • Dan Reed
  • Gun
  • Accept
  • Rush
  • Journey/Foreigner
  • Iron Maiden

Ahh feck it - there's no way to keep up! Will have to sober up and sit down and list all the forthcoming gigs from national and international acts, not to mention the hundreds of fantastic local gigging and recording bands!

Friday, November 19, 2010

this one's for Baal

 Have to mention this gig announcement for Mark - Rush playing O2 in Dublin on May 12th next year: tickets on sale 26th November
Rush - Beyond the Lighted Stage [2 DVD]

Accept the past

TEUTONIC metal stars of the eighties, Accept, are preparing  for a Belfast date at the Spring and Airbrake on the 20th March hosted by the Distortion Project. Balls the Wall people!
Blood of the Nations
And a reminder that Diamond Head are on tomorrow night and Exodus on Sunday.

Heavy or what!

More soon!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

XL vibes? That’ll be Double-Wide

SOME of you who read this column on a regular basis may (or may not!) know that for six years I was a full-time journalist. Even when I sold out to the PR and Communications profession I still penned articles for many a publication.

In penning such articles, drafting text and submitting clean copy one always has to retain a certain professional detachment. One has to take a slightly jaundiced, cynical eye on what you are doing, what you are told, and exercise restraint before raising expectant fingers above the keyboard.

But this is my blog, this is about hard rock and heavy metal. And if I like something, I’m gonna damn well say so, with a hell yeah and horns thrust aloft in between keystrokes.

Thus when Double-Wide’s CD 18 Wheels of Misery landed on the doormat, it was slammed into an unsuspecting car CD player and later copied on to ye olde iTunes for future listening while walking the dog...

There are those that say it takes little to impress me, but they do not know the discarded CDs sent to me for review now decaying in a bottom drawer, the hyperlinks to hopeful contenders that have accorded nary an aural glance and been subjected to that button marked delete on the keyboard.

And, truth be told I do have varied tastes, from the nastiest thrash through to the groove of classic rock.

Double-Wide have established themselves as an act deserving of a place on my iTunes rotations; having already accorded themselves mucho plays on Rock Radio NI.

Not that Double-Wide are easy to classify... They proudly declare their influences: a heady mix of Southern rock with Pantera, Down and even Black Stone Cherry all balled up to create a unique sound.

Check out Dead River and the Devil’s Ride to hear what rock from our wee island can do to the Black Stone Cherry dry county stylings.

And listen to Hell’s Redemption...it emerges from the speakers like the sludge from a Louisiana swamp, slow swagger that snarls dreadfully like Phil Anselmo in a bad mood.

Double-Wide are not just another derivative wannabe acts. Yes the production and mix on this does not always convey the power of the tunes, and the vocal lines are sometimes overtaken by the geetar, but such a slickly dirty geetar tone reeks of commitment to bourbon, beer and bar-wrecking good times.

The subject matter lyrically has that balance between darkness and that nod to the listener that while all is not well we’re gonna have a swell time riding a big truck all the way down to hell.

Title track 18 Wheels of Misery rides that dark highway where blues legends draw their scales from Satan’s fingers at deserted crossroads.

That they have named themselves after a Corrosion of Conformity track tells you a lot about the band.

There is a mysterious area of music where the blues, rock and metal somewhere melded to form a genre that isn’t that easy to define, but is always pleasurable to play and listen to.

A little work on arrangements and slight improvement on production and mixing and Double-Wide could stand shoulder to shoulder with many of the best recent contenders from Norn Iron.

In the meantime I’m thumbing a lift on the Devil’s Ride of 18 Wheels of Misery, hooked up to a Twin Demon powering 18 Wheels of Misery...hell that’s a torturous way to say that I pretty well like the XL sounds of Double-Wide!