AOR and Melodic Rock News on 12/05/2014

TWO CROWNS UNITE ONCE AGAIN:
Frontiers Records is pleased to announce the signing of Beauvoir / Free for the release of a brand new album during 2015.
Beauvoir / Free sees a new cooperation between famed singer, songwriter and producer Jean Beauvoir (ex-Plasmatics, Voodoo X and collaborator of KISS, Ramones and Little Steven among others) and guitarist Micki Free (ex-Shalamar). The pair was responsible for penning the milestone debut Crown Of Thorns album which was originally signed by Interscope Records and later released independently throughout Europe and Asia in 1994.

With a tour supporting Bon Jovi and Van Halen for three months throughout all of Europe, playing to over a million people and with raving audience response. Crown of Thorns soon become one of the biggest Hard Rock bands to emerge in the second half of the 90’s. Free however had already left the band by the time in which Crown of Thorns second album was released and was replaced by Tommy Lafferty. Free and Beauvoir are now reuniting with a promise to release their most exciting collaboration ever. Beauvoir says: “I truly look forward to this reunion and collaborating with Micki once again! Stay tuned cause It will rock!!!”
The pair played Hard Rock Calling UK and 2 shows in Scandinavia during April and look forward to more shows in the coming months. Frontiers plans to release the album in early 2015.

URIAH HEEP TO RELEASE DIGITALLY THE BRAND NEW SINGLE “ONE MINUTE” TODAY:
Frontiers Records is pleased to announce the digital release of Uriah Heep first single “One Minute” today. The new single is available from today for download (iTunes, Amazon etc) and legal streaming (Spotify, Deezer, etc) on all digital platforms across the world! The new single is also available in a special version with German lyrics and it is called Eine Minute.
The digital single is taken from the forthcoming album entitled Outsider which is planned for release on June 6 in Europe, June 9 in the UK and June 10 in North America on Frontiers. “Outsider” is Uriah Heep’s 24th studio album which follows the success of “Into the Wild” and extensive worldwide touring.
Uriah Heep debuted in 1970 with the release of one of Hard Rock music’s milestones “Very ‘eavy… Very ‘umble” and have since sold in excess of 40 million albums worldwide. They constantly tour in the world, playing in over 56 countries and the band’s live set list features hits from the 70s and 80s, such as “The Wizard”, “Free ‘n Easy”, “Sunrise” and their monster hits “Easy Livin’”, “July Morning” and “Lady in Black”, as well as new material.
Uriah Heep play up to 125 shows a year to a total audience of 500,000 people and a full tour in support of the new release has been already announced.

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DOUG ALDRICH DEPARTS WHITESNAKE:
Guitarist Doug Aldrich has posted this statement on his departure from Whitesnake
“Well I guess news that I have left Whitesnake was leaked… I planned and hoped DC and I could release a joint statement. We will as soon as possible but everything happened so fast that we aren’t ready. Firstly, Thanks to my big bro David for such a killer run together!! So many songs, tours, projects, always inspiring and pushing each other! Mostly I was to thank the loyal WS Choir and fans around the world. You have been so amazing to me and it’s been an honor to play for you with WS.
I love you guys and I’ll see you all again. Thank you so very much for your unending support. Also, not sure how or where the info started about a Solo Career but this is not true or correct information. I have no plans at this time to go solo 🙂 
I’m just not in the Whitesnake/David Coverdale band anymore. I’ll let you guys know what I’m doing ASAP but for now please know I very much appreciate your support and will hopefully do a statement with My Brutal Brother DC shortly.
Big love for the Aldrich clan.”

REDLINE TO HEADLINE AT THE ISLE OF MAN TT RACES THIS YEAR!:
Redline are proud to announce that they have been invited by the official IOM TT organisers to play at the prestigious Villa Marina Royal Hall on Thursday 5th June. This is the first time Redline will have played at the TT Races and are honoured to be playing their song ‘King Of The Mountain’, which has now become an anthem for the event, to all the TT fans! Redline wrote the song as a tribute to the TT Races and have been making the pilgrimage to the event themselves since 2000, so for the band this really is a dream come true!
Ticket information at: villagaiety.ticketsolve.com/shows/873514301/events?show_id%5B0%5D=873514301.


R.I.P. GRAPHIC ARTIST DIRK ILLING:
It is with deep regret and sadness that we inform all Black Majesty fans that our artist and good friend Dirk Illing, who created all art for our album covers/designs has suddenly passed away. Our deepest sympathy goes out to his immediate family and friends. We are truly saddened by this news. May he Rest In Peace. ~ Black Majesty – Melbourne, Australia. www.blackmajesty.com

R.I.P. Dirk. One talented artist.


LUKATHER TALKS TO HUFFINGTON POST:
A great new interview with Toto’s Steve Lukather online now at: www.huffingtonpost.com/mike-ragogna/conversations-with-totos_b_5292767.html. A couple of highlights:

On the new album:
“We’re working on our new album, it’s really strong. We haven’t made one in ten years. Ironically through a lawsuit we go forced back into doing it, but once we got into the process we realized, “We’re going to make a really good one.” We’re making one for the band. We’re not trying to follow a trend or go all EDM or have rap guys do our stuff, we’re going to do a Toto record, our classic sound. We wrote some really good songs..”

On the growing success of the Live In Poland DVD:
“We didn’t hype this thing, but all of a sudden it came out and just took off, it was like, “What the fuck, are you kidding me?” This is fantastic for a bunch of old shits like us.”

Advice for young artists:
“Learn how to f**king play and sing. The big lie to a young person is they go into a studio and maybe they have some raw talent but it’s very rough. Maybe they’ve got a pretty face. But all of a sudden, they achieve fame and then they realize it’s the Milli Vanilli thing, they can’t really pull it off. So once you get found out, your career’s over. If you can really play and really sing and really write material, you’ll have a long career, if you’re really good and you can take punch after punch…” 

POD BRIEFS:
In episode 10 of One On One With Mitch Lafon. Mitch is joined by co-host Russ Dwarf of the Killer Dwarfs. The two discuss bands that have successfully and unsuccessfully changed lead singers including Skid Row, Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Van Halen, Iron Maiden, Journey, Foreigner and more. Plus, Russ talks about whether or not he could be replaced in his band. The two are joined by Tom Gimbel and Jeff Pilson of Foreigner who discuss their singer (Kelly Hansen) as well as their upcoming The Soundtrack Of Summer tour and album with Styx and Don Felder.
Interview link: www.spreaker.com/user/talkingmetal/one-on-one-with-mitch-lafon-episode-10_2?autoplay=1.

This week on the Double Stop Podcast, Jason Bieler explains how he got started as a guitar player, and his first big break playing in Jeff Scott Soto’s Talisman. He covers how Saigon Kick got their start, their early success with Love Is On The Wayќ (the ballad that killed hair metal), his move to lead vocalist, his unexpected success in Indonesia, Super TransAtlantic, Bieler Bros Records, the reunion with Saigon Kick, and his new project ­ Owl Stretching. thedoublestop.com/ep-14-jason-bieler-saigon-kick/

ARTIST/PRODUCER BIG SWEDE TO RELEASE ROCK SINGLE ‘ROCK STAR’:
Los Angeles, CA, May 9th, 2014 – The Swedish born producer/artist known as Big Swede is releasing his new rock single, Rock Star, on May 15, 2014. The release includes a remix and features Johnny Griparic (Slash’s Snakepit), Patrick Stone (Adler’s Appetite) andHowie Simon (Alcatrazz). “I have used these guys on a lot of tracks and now was the time to release a rock track. I have been wanting to do this for a while,” says Big Swede.
The release comes with an original version and a remix. “The original version is a straight up rocker. I was going for hi-energy with a live band feel. Then I started to chop up the guitar riff and play around with the vocals. That became the remix, which also has a halftime feel in certain sections and a short breakdown,” continues Big Swede.
Big Swede released three solo records last year, “Electronic Core District Pt.1-3” and one collaboration, “There Is Still Time”. “It was nice to do some guitar based rock as a lot of my stuff lately has been electronic, in a soundtrack vein. I like to switch between different styles and there is definitely more Big Swede rock coming soon,” continues Big Swede.
Big Swede’s credits include Mercedes Benz “Super Service” Commercial feat. Roger Federer, NCIS, The Mentalist, CSI: Miami, Alphas, 90210, Lie To Me, Keeping Up With The Kardashians, Punk’d, Real World, tour introduction music for Van Halen, and drum samples for KISS and Slash. Collaborations include Reeves Gabrels (The Cure, David Bowie), Paul Ill (James Blunt, Christina Aguilera) and Greg Hampton (Alice Cooper, Lita Ford).
Itunes Preview: itunes.apple.com/us/album/rock-star-feat.-patrick-stone/id872746841 / www.bigswedestudios.com.

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Cinderella Live Album Being Re-Released As ‘Stripped’

Cinderella Live Album Being Re-Released As 'Stripped'A live Cinderella album entitled ‘Stripped’, a solid collection of live tracks from Philadelphia based group, will be released on May 16th through Collectors Dream Records. 

Originally released in 2001 as ‘Live At The Key Club’, the songs contained on ‘Stripped’ were recorded over the course of two nights at the Key Club, in Hollywood, during Cinderella’s ‘Unfished Business’ tour. The shows were staged on October 2nd and 3rd of 1998 and featured the original Cinderella line-up, with main man Tom Keifer out front, commanding with his tortured vocals, along with Jeff LaBar, Fred Coury and Eric Brittingham. 

‘Stripped’ includes fourteen hard rockin’ and blues-based tracks from the group’s recording career and two bonus tracks recorded live in 1991. ‘Stripped’ is a quality set of live cuts that is worth checkin’ out… 

Cinderella guitarist Jeff LaBar is currently in the studio putting the final touches on his brand new solo album, which is slated for release sometime in early spring through Rat Pak Records. The tracks on the album range from classic, early Cinderella-style hard rock, to groove laden blues-rock, and everything in between. LaBar not only sings on this release, but also does a fantastic job of capturing the magic and spirit of the classic genre he helped create. 

Cinderella frontman Tom Keifer released his long-awaited solo album ‘The Way Life Goes’ on April 30th, 2013, via Merovee Records. The album reached the Sleaze Roxx Top 10 and the website stated, “if you enjoyed Cinderella’s last two studio albums I have no doubts that you will appreciate this very personal offering from one hard rock’s true musical talents.” 

‘Stripped’ track listing:
01. The More Things Change
02. Push Push 
03. Gypsy Road 
04. Fallin Apart At The Seams 
05. Heartbreak Station 
06. The Last Mile 
07. Shelter Me 
08. Coming Home 
09. Hot And Bothered 
10. Night Songs 
11. Nobody’s Fool 
12. Somebody Save Me 
13. Shake Me
14. Don’t Know What You Got 
15. Sick For The Cure (bonus track) 
16. Make Your Own Way (bonus track) 

Hessler Rock First Show With New Singer

Show Date: March 20, 2014

Location: Chicago, Illinois, USA

Venue: Double Door (via live internet feed on Gigity TV)

Reviewer: Olivier

 

I only ‘discovered’ Chicago based metal band Hessler in the last three months or so — but that time has been eventful for the band given that they made the bold move of switching lead singers. What I discovered while researching the band a little bit prior to recently interviewing band founderIgz Kincaid and new vocalist Jessikill for Sleaze Roxx (read the interview here) is that the band seems to go the extra mile in terms of innovation to get to the next level. For instance, even though Hessler only formed back in 2010 they are already the feature of a film documentary called ‘The Last Kamikazis Of Heavy Metal’ that was recently screened in Texas. 

Hessler were scheduled to play their first show with Jessikill at the Double Door, a club in Chicago with a capacity of about 500 people. I would love to have attended my first Hessler show there, but distance and life in general were major impediments. Given Hessler‘s penchant for innovation, I was not that surprised to read that the band would offer the opportunity, to whichever fans could not attend their historically groundbreaking show, to see that concert free of charge through a live feed transmitted via the internet. 

The live feed was courtesy of Gigity TV, and to my surprise gave a good shot of pretty much the entire stage along with one additional camera providing a side angle. To Hessler‘s credit, the band also provided the live feed to the opening bands. Although I did appreciate the opportunity to witness Hessler‘s show in Chicago via webcam, there is definitely no substitute for going to see a concert live in person — watching a show while sitting at home instead of live is akin to attending a meeting via telephone or videoconference. I think it is widely known that it’s always better to have a meeting face to face, and the same certainly applies to attending a concert in person — except make that hundredfold! 

Following their opening intro, which I believe featured part of the entrance music from wrestling’s legendary Road Warriors (“What a rush!”), Hessler kicked off their show with their first released single with new singer Jessikill — “Never Lost My Way”. That song’s beginning is highlighted by a long scream courtesy of Jessikill, and she certainly nailed it at the concert which at the same time reinforced that the lead vocalist change may well have been a wise move! As I suspected, the band’s energy level was quite high and despite watching the band move around from my laptop screen (which is pretty shitty in itself), I found them entertaining to watch. 

Surprisingly, the set was heaviest on material from ‘Bad Blood’, the band’s 2011 debut EP, with four songs played from that EP including “Windy City Wild Child”, “Kamikazi” and “Crash ‘N Burn”. Three new songs from the Jessikill Hessler era were played including what appeared to be the debut of the song “Between You And Me”, “Never Lost My Way” and “The Cure” (check out the YouTube video I found for that song from this show). Certainly Hessler‘s live performance viewed from my laptop re-affirmed that I want to see the band play live in person. 

Hats off to Hessler for making their live debut performance with Jessikill available free of charge to everyone around the world. That being said, I hope not to watch too many of these live events through the internet in the future as nothing — and I mean nothing — replaces going to see a band play live in person. 

Hessler setlist:
01. Never Lost My Way
02. Windy City Wild Child
03. Who Will You Run To
04. C’mon
05. Kamikazi
06. The Cure
07. Waste Away
08. Between You And Me
09. Last Alive
10. Crash ‘N Burn
11. Nightrain (Guns N’ Roses cover)