Archive for Rock

Open Season…

Posted in City Of Lights, Music, Music Review, News, Review, Rock with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 17, 2012 by Rex Bussey

Times change, and recently a lot of rock focused news outlets have been focusing on the negative, on the recent retirement of Foo Fighters, Motley Crue’s announcement that they are set to close shop in the near future, and Steven Tyler’s unpleasant dig at Paul Stanley of Kiss. But it’s not all doom and gloom.

There are up and coming bands that promise to replace the masters of old. Hardcore Superstar, the indomitable Reckless love, Foxy Shazzam, and, closer to home, City of Lights.

COL, as they are affectionately known, are a Leeds based band that play surprisingly meaty melody driven pop Rock. It isn’t, technically, hard rock, but it’s still worth a mention. Since they started touring the UK earlier this year, they have been going from strength to strength. They have sold out shows in Leeds and Manchester, they’ve played encore after encore, their album sales have spiked through the roof. Why? Their musics good, that’s why. Maybe they aren’t Aerosmith, or the Rolling Stones. Maybe they don’t swagger quite as hard as Axl Rose or pout as convincingly as Gary Cherone, but they do produce catchy tunes, and they will make you smile. Take their new CD, Seasons change (available here:http://www.facebook.com/cityoflightsmusic) and give it a listen. Energetic, bouncy, light hearted fun. You might not find yourself subconsciously banging your head in a helpless parody of the hapless Ozzy Osbourne, but you will enjoy it. Their gigs are the same, fun fuelled, full of vigour, and thoroughly enjoyable.

And I guess that’s the point really;  seasons do change, but just because we’re watching old growth die back, doesn’t mean that there isn’t new talent rising up to fill the gaps. There is always hope, always something to believe in.

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On Spiders, Hairspray, and Old Men That Sing About Sex

Posted in Motley Crue, Music, Music Review, Review, Rock with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 15, 2012 by Rex Bussey

Spiders are simple creatures bound by simple laws. When you cut the leg off a spider, the leg dies, but the nerves inside do not. Long after death the leg twitches madly, spasaming across the floor, writhing in a mad dance, a hopeless parody of life. Motley Crue were once the spider; brooding, ominous, genre defying. once upon a time they scuttled back and forth, playing hair metal, hard rock, even a little pop. They were never afraid to innovate and they influenced more bands than I could possibly count. Once, Motley Crue were a force to be reckoned with.

The Crue are not, however, whisky or cheese. They have not matured well.

Their  newest song is, I think, testament to that.  It’s called Sex, and it’s disappointing to say the least.

It’s a 3 minute slice of mediocre hard rock. It’s not original, particularly striking, or incredibly relevant. It’s marred by Tommy Lee’s overenthusiastic drumming, it suffers from an over-abundance of backing vocals and a rather flaccid chorus. Vince’s vocal performance is noteworthy; he sounds better than ever before, and Mick Mars hasn’t lost his touch. The riffs are still catchy, the structure’s acceptable, but it isn’t special, and it won’t wow you. It feels underwhelming.

After 30+ years of writing, recording and producing music, you’d expect the Crue to be on top of their game, to still be brooding, ominous and innovative, to produce something noteworthy, something powerful. Unfortunately Motley Crue seem hell bent on becoming a parody of themselves. They write and produce music that sounds identical to the mush they spewed out pre Baker. They have become the spiders leg; writhing about on the floor, twitching, a reflexive self parody, still desperately clinging to youth and vitality, still screaming about sex despite their flabby jowls and wrinkled faces.

Don’t just take my word for it though. Listen to it here, form your own opinion, tell me what you think.

 

A Long Way Down

Posted in Music Review with tags , , , on October 3, 2012 by Rex Bussey

You know what’s old hat? Criticizing Kiss for being bad musicians. Yes we know Gene Simmons is a money hungry, child-gobbling monster, and yes we know that Paul Stanley wears a wig and prances about like a flea bitten flamingo, but that doesn’t make them a bad band. I know, I know; Fireworks? Explosions? they obviously value showmanship more than technical prowess; their music must suck. Right? WRONG! Go listen to Long Way Down, right now. It’s Kiss’s newest attempt to rob you of your hard earned dollars and you know what? It Rocks. It’s louder than a hastily tasered eunuch, it drips more attitude and charisma than a freshly blended Steven Tyler smoothie, and it will eat your ears alive.

 

‘Another anthem?’ I hear you jeer, ‘how many more can we possibly need?’ well one more at least, obviously. Pause at 2:59, hear that angry, raw bass fill? Yeah that’s good music right there. Pause at 1:38 and listen to Eric singers mini drum solo, that wall of sound, those Bonham-esque flourishes…what’s not to love? This is an anthem, a loud, brash crowd pleaser, but it’s also full of clever little pauses and innovative little licks. It’s tight, controlled mayhem, it’s orgasm inducing walls of sound all neatly packaged and perfectly arranged. It’s Kiss on top of their game. Don’t take my word for it though, go give it a listen here or find out more about their album Monster here

 

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