Search This Blog

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Brief News Update for Wednesday October 3rd, 2012

NIGHT RANGER "24 Strings and a Drummer - Live and Acoustic" EPK

 The new EPk for NIGHT RANGER's forthcoming release "24 Strings and a Drummer", out October 19th in Europe and October 22nd in North America on Frontiers Records

A compelling, all acoustic performance with Night Ranger at their best, watch the video clicking on the image below:
Night Ranger debuted in 1982 with the album “Dawn Patrol”, containing such classic tracks as “Don’t Tell Me You Love Me”, “Sing Me Away” and “Call My Name”.
This record was the beginning of the band’s incredible success story. To date, Night Ranger has sold more than 16 Million records worldwide, has earned and multiple gold and platinum certifications and two Top Ten singles, including the ubiquitous “Sister Christian.”

Their contributions are featured in multiple entertainment realms, including the hit Broadway musical and film “Rock of Ages” and the successful videogame series "Rock Band" and "Guitar Hero".
The band has also been recognized in such significant films and television shows as Boogie Nights and “American Dad”.

As a celebration of the 30th anniversary of their debut album, Night Ranger has planned a very special release: an album/DVD recorded live in an intimate all-acoustic setting, with a select number of fans at The Studio D Recording in Sausalito, CA in May 2012. The result includes exciting live renditions of the band’s classic hits with new, refreshing arrangements; tracks include “(You Can Still) Rock In America”, “Sister Christian”, “This Boy Needs To Rock” or “Four In The Morning.”
Available in CD/DVD package “24 Strings and a Drummer” is a superb release; a testament to Night Ranger’s stellar live show and the strength of their songwriting abilities.

Official weblinks:

Heaven's Basement - Photo: James Minchin III
(New York, NY) - Hard rock fans worldwide brace yourselves because Heaven's Basement, the rising UK quartet, is set to release their debut full-length album, FILTHY EMPIRE, via Red Bull Records in early 2013. 
FILTHY EMPIRE is produced by John Feldmann (The Used, Papa Roach, Black Veil Brides) and is the follow-up to the band's independently-released, acclaimed EP, UNBREAKABLE.  The band just premiered the video for the first single, "Fire, Fire" via broadcast on Scuzz TV and online at 
The clip, directed by Michael Maxxis (Ours, Sum 41, and Our Lady Peace) can be seen here:
Heaven's Basement have been making a name for themselves overseas via their relentless touring and fiery live show plus music that features huge guitar riffs, killer melodies and an arena-rock sound. 
The band is currently on tour as support for Halestorm in The UK and Europe and will then hit the road to support Seether later this year, also in The UK and Europe. 
Please see below for all tour dates.
Originally formed in the East Midlands in England in 2007 (although the band's current line-up came together more recently in 2009), Heaven's Basement have already toured with the likes of Buckcherry, Papa Roach, Theory Of A Deadman, Shinedown, and more and played this year's Download Festival in the UK to a packed tent of more than 5,000 fans.  Kerrang declared, "Heaven's Basement play as if their lives depend on it.  They should already be a big name - bristling riffs and jagged, riotous hooks are their poison and exceptional is not too strong a word." 

Heaven's Basement is Aaron Buchanan (vocals), Sid Glover (guitar), Rob Ellershaw (bass), and Chris Rivers (drums).
Heaven's Basement tour dates:
 3  Cologne, Germany  - Luxor*
 4  Antwerp, Belgium  -  TRIX Centrum voor Muziek*
 5  Paris, France  - Nouveau Casino*
 7  Milan, Italy - Magazzini Generale*
 9 Vienna, Austria  - Szene*
10  Munich, Germany - Backstage*
11  Frankfurt, Germany - Batschkapp*
12  Tiburg, Netherlands - O13*
13   Dortmund, Germany - FZW*
14  Berlin, Germany  -  Lido*
15  Hamburg, Germany - Hamburg*
17  Stockholm, Sweden - Debaser Slussen*
18  Oslo, Norway  - John Dee*
19   Copenhagen, Denmark -  BETA*
21 Zurich, Switzerland - Dynamo*
24 Los Angeles, CA - Club Nokia with The Darkness
26  Plymouth, UK - Plymouth Pavilion
with Duff McKagan's Loaded/Ugly Kid Joe
 3 Dublin, Ireland - The Academy Dublin
with Duff McKagan's Loaded/Ugly Kid Joe
 9   Helsinki, Finland - The Circus**
11  Gothenburg, Sweden - Brewhouse**
15  London, UK - Electric Ballroom**
16  Manchester, UK - Manchester Academy 2**
17  Edinburgh, UK - The Liquid Room**
18  Birmingham, UK - Birmingham Institute**
20  Tiburg, Netherlands - O13**
21  Luzern, Switzerland - Schuur**
23  Bilbao, Spain - Kafe Antzokia**
29  - Trezzo sull'Adda - Live Club**
30  Solothurn, Switzerland - Kulturfabrik Kofmehl**
 1 Munich, Germany - Backstage**
 2  Frankfurt, Germany - Batschkapp**
 4  Hamburg, Germany - Markhalle**
 5  Cologne, Germany - Stollwerk**
 6   Berlin, Germany - C-Club**
*supporting Halestorm
**supporting Seether
For more information, please visit:

Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor announce UK Tour
Tommy and Martin Photo: Allen Clark
Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor are pleased to announce “The Colonel & The Governor UK Tour 2013”. A forthcoming collaborative acoustic album of the same name is scheduled for UK release in February 2013. The 16-date tour, which sees both guitarists playing together and separately, starts March 7 at the Waterside Theatre, Aylesbury. Tickets are available from the 24 hour box office 0844 478 0898,

While they are both serious "men of letters" with Tommy Emmanuel being an honorary Kentucky Colonel, a CGP (Certified Guitar Player), an Order of Australia Medalist (AM) and the holder of an honorary masters (MA) and Martin Taylor being an M.B.E. (Member of the British Empire) and holder of two Honourary Doctorates, they honour each other affectionately with these titles. Both acoustic guitarists are leaders of music in their respective countries - Australia and the UK.
Call it a British Commonwealth thing.
Known for his complex finger-picking style, Tommy Emmanuel is an Australian guitarist who performs energetic concerts, and is highly regarded for the use of percussive effects on the guitar. In 2008 and 2010, Guitar Player Magazine’s Readers Poll voted him Best Acoustic Guitarist. Martin Taylor is a multi-award winning guitarist and Acoustic Guitar magazine calls him, “the acoustic guitarist of his generation.” 
Live dates:
Aylesbury, Waterside Theatre (March 7)
Gateshead, The Sage (March 8)
Manchester, Bridgewater Hall (March 9)
Wolverhampton, Robin 2 (March 10)
Barnstaple, Queen’s Theatre (March 12)
Exeter, Corn Exchange (March 13)
Bristol, Colston Hall (March 14)
London o2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire (March 16)
Folkestone, Leas Cliffe Hall (March 17)
Crawley, Hawth Theatre (March 18)
Ipswich, Corn Exchange (March 20)
Chesterfield, Winding Wheel (March 21)
Halifax, Victoria Theatre (March 22)
Ulverston, Coronation Hall (March 24)
Aberdeen, Lemon Tree (March 26)
Edinburgh, Queen’s Hall (March 28)

Tracer confirm details for next album and announce new member

Australian rock band TRACER started their “Spaces In Between” UK tour on Wednesday September 26 at the Slade Rooms in Wolverhampton with special guests Virgil and the Accelerators.
Nominated as Best New Band at this year’s Classic Rock Roll of Honour Awards, Tracer will be head to LA at the end of the year to record their next album with producer Kevin Shirley (Led Zeppelin, Iron Maiden, Slayer, Silverchair, Cold Chisel). 
The band recently replaced their bassist Leigh Brown with new member, Pat Saracino. Says Tracer’s drummer, Andre Wise, “We'd like to thank Leigh Brown for his tireless efforts and massive contribution to the band. Leigh recently decided his musical journey with Tracer has come to end.”
During the UK tour, Tracer will also perform acoustic sessions with Birmingham’s Kerrang! Radio (Oct 26), Manchester’s Real Radio XS (Oct 27), and Glasgow’s Real Radio XS (Oct 29).
Tickets for Tracer’s UK tour dates can be ordered from the 24 hour box office number 0844 478 0898,

Remaining live dates:

Nottingham Rescue Rooms (Oct 3)
Bath Komedia (Oct 4)
Gloucester Guildhall (Oct 5)
Poole Mr Kyps (Oct 6)
Brighton The Haunt (Oct 7)

For the full online announcement:

Tracer - Official Website:

Tracer - Official Facebook:

Tracer - Official Twitter:!/Tracerband

Lynyrd Skynyrd live at DTE Energy Music Theatre (Pine Knob), Clarkston, Michigan.

Lynyrd Skynyrd live at DTE Energy Music Theatre (Pine Knob), Clarkston, Michigan.
Friday 21st September, 2012.
Photo: Lynyrd Skynyrd onstage in Clarkston, Michigan. - Note: All photos: Alun Willliams
It’s probably five or six years now since I have been to a Lynyrd Skynyrd show and the last time also featured a great opening act in their ‘Southern brothers’ 38 Special and I remember that being a great night, if a lot of people that night, were clearly out of control!

This time around, it’s a rainy night in Michigan, as Fall is upon us and cooler nights are now the norm and the opening act tonight is Los Lonely Boys, a more rootsy style band, think Black Crowes kind of style.
Not really our thing, although they did have one or two good tunes I recall.
We arrived at our seats as they were finishing their set and caught them playing their best known hit, ‘How Far Is Heaven.’
The crowd clearly lapped it up and it really wasn't so bad!
Lynryd Skynryd … If ever a band felt it must be cursed, rather than blessed then surely it’s them.
Most people would say Def Leppard perhaps have had more than their fair share of bad luck, but seriously I don’t believe any band has endured what Skynyrd has and yet persevered on.
Sure they have had a number of big hits and top selling gold and platinum albums, but think back in your history books folks to 1977, when the band had been riding high on the successes of both Sweet Home Alabama and the all-time classic Freebird.
They were on a plane they chartered from Greenville, South Carolina to their next gig in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and it ran out of fuel near the end of their flight and although the pilots tried to make an emergency landing, in Mississippi, the plane ended up crashing into a nearby forest in Gillsburg.
Three band members, singer Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist / singer Steve Gaines and backing vocalist Cassie Gaines were all killed, along with the bands assistant tour manager Dean Kilpatrick and both pilot and co-pilot.
All the other band members were seriously injured too at the time.
Since that crash, a number of the remaining original and replacement band members, have passed away one way or another.
Allen Collins (Guitarist) died in 1990 of pneumonia, bassist Leon Wilkeson was found dead in a hotel room in 2001, Hughie Thomasson (Guitarist) died in his sleep in 2007 and in 2009 keyboard / piano player Billy Powell died.
 From the classic ‘Skynyrd line up then – Unless you included Ricky Medlocke, who was part of the very early ‘70’s incarnation of the band. – only Gary Rossington is still present.
So what does a current lineup of Skynyrd have to offer, now I’ve given you some background?!
Photo: Lynyrd Skynyrd rockin' in Detroit!
Well, there’s no question about the current players abilities.
Alongside Rossington, is the aforementioned Medlocke who’s been back onboard now since 1996, youngest of the Van Zant brothers, Johnny stepped into big brother Ronnie’s shoes in 1987, when the surviving members of the classic lineup hit the road again.
Incidentally, other Van Zant brother Donnie fronts 38 Special, for those that didn’t know it …
 Backing vocalist Dale Krantz-Rossington, has been a part of the band since ’87, fellow backing vocalist Carol Chase since ’91, then drummer Michael Cartellone (Damn Yankees, Accept) has been in since ’99, Mark Matejka (Guitars) since 2006, Peter Keys (Keyboards / Piano) in 2009 and Johnny Colt on bass is a new addition this year.
Photo: Mark Matejka and Ricky Medlocke - Let's jam!
Frequent jamming / posing together, throughout the evening for both Medlocke and Matejka, becomes very much the norm ...
Together, the band all look and play the part of a 2012 Lynyrd Skynyrd in great style.
They hit the stage at 9pm and opened with the title track of their latest album, ‘Last of a Dying Breed,’ which to be honest, sounds like it could’ve been from any of the band’s historic past. Good stuff!
Then they launched right into ‘What’s Your Name,’ to huge cheers and applause, welcome back to your northern home boys!
Johnny says, “Let’s make some noise and do some ‘Down South Jukin’!”
No question, it may not be the original band, but clearly Michigan is loving the sounds tonight!
‘That Smell’ was next which again the fans lapped up, even though they were now getting drenched, as the heavens weren’t about to let up.
Wasting no time at all they gave us ‘Saturday Night Special,’ which is classic Skynyrd once again and boy, do they sound on their game.
Top photo: Johnny Van Zant and Gary Rossington, watched by Michael Cartellone.
Lower photo: Skynyrd caught in great lighting.
Johnny then steps up to the microphone to ask the question, ‘How many real die hard Skynyrd fans are out there tonight then? Let’s boogie!’
Then they pick their third song of the evening from the ‘Street Survivors’ album in ‘I Know A Little.’
Johnny is now in talk mode, as he dedicates the next song to ‘each and every one of our troops out there, in harms ways or any one that’s served their country here,’ and it’s ‘Simple Man.’
A great song and the backdrop behind the band reflects every emblem of the Marines, Army, Navy, Air Force and more.
Moving stuff indeed!
Next they pull together a medley, starting with ‘Gimme Back My Bullets,’ that leads in to ‘Whiskey Rock-a-roller,’ then ‘The Needle and the Spoon,’ from the ‘Second Helping’ album, where Ronnie had written about the dangers of drug usage.
They then pull out the classy ‘Tuesday Gone,’ great song which again is warmly received, closely followed by ‘Good Teacher.’
Photo: Johnny Van Zant, I feel you Detroit ...!'
You start to realize that we must be on the home straight, when a band seems to hitting all their big, big songs, which starts with ‘Gimme Three Steps,’ a classic in anyone’s book, then ‘The Breeze,’ then the big old Confederate flag hangs as the backdrop, with Alabama boldly emblazoned across it, cue ‘Sweet Home Alabama!’
They are on a roll!
Top Photo: These Southern boys rock, no doubt about it!
Lower Photo: Guitarists unite!
A great if somewhat kind of short set, I’m guessing because of the rain teaming down and the band was looking out for the fans.
As they leave the stage and fans are shouting for more, a spotlight focuses on a golden eagle that sits upon a confederate flag on top of the piano.
Photo: The Eagle and 'that' flag!
Then a backdrop falls with all their fallen, former band mates names upon it and Johnny says, “In the words of my great brother Ronnie Van Zant, ‘What song is it you want to hear? Freebird!”
 No question, the most anticipated song of the night by all!
They gave us a good solid hour and a half set and I for one left a happy man, I know more than a few others did too!
Yes, these boys have still got it ..., yes they do!
Rating: 4 out of 5
Official website:

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Brief Note Update - Tuesday October 2nd, 2012

Hi folks,
Yes, I know I'm behind again, it's so crazy right now ... Work and family life, just crazy!
I will catch up with news soon, BUT ... Before I do that, I'm hoping to get the Lynyrd Skynyrd gig review up first ... Great show, only one original member in Gary Rossington, two if you count Ricky Medlocke from the formative years, but what a fun night!
Review up very soon!
Cheers, must run, only just got in from work ... It's 8pm ..., left home at 7am this morning ... Get the picture? That's a normal day it seems.
No privacy in my lunch breaks, not cool ... Just fifteen - twenty minutes tops today ... It's no way to be.
Later, Al