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Dave Mustaine gets angry at guitar tech for warming up during Megadeth set

Megadeth main man Dave Mustaine has never been shy of sharing his opinions, or voicing his frustrations when he feels he has been wronged. You probably wouldn’t want to get on the wrong side of MegaDave though, as one unlucky guitar tech found at last weekend’s Barcelona Rock Fest. 

Set up in Parc de Can Zam, Barcelona Rock Fest features two side-by-side ‘main’ stages, meaning punters can often watch bands back to back without having to run from one stage to the other. Unfortunately, that does present some logistical challenges for the crew who need to soundtrack while other bands are playing. 

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Listen to Journey’s New Single ‘United We Stand’

Journey has released “United We Stand,” the latest single from their upcoming album Freedom. You can listen to the song below.

The mid-tempo track is classic Journey, with Neal Schon‘s repeating guitar melody anchoring the song and Arnel Pineda‘s impassioned, soaring vocals bolstered by rich backing harmonies and dramatic horns as he sings, “United we stand / Divided we fall / Just hold on to me, girl / And together we can face it all.”

“United We Stand” is the fifth song released from Freedom, following “Don’t Give Up on Us,”  “Let It Rain,” “You Got the Best of Me” and “The Way We Used to Be.” The upcoming LP, which arrives July 8, will mark Journey’s first album in over a decade and the 16th studio album of their illustrious career.

Freedom was almost the title of a different Journey release. During a conversation with UCR, Schon revealed the band’s late manager, Herbie Herbert, had pitched the title for their 1986 album, which was eventually called Raised on Radio. “He wanted to call Raised on Radio, Freedom. Steve Perry did not want that and he fought him profusely,” Schon recalled. “So Steve ended up getting Raised on Radio. Herbie wanted to stay with a one-word title.”

More than 30 years later, Schon and the group revisited the title and realized it had taken on new meaning. “We had just gone through this whole lawsuit with the ex-band members. We went through this whole divorce from old attorneys, old managers, old accountants,” he explained. “It became more evident to me that the word ‘freedom’ meant a lot of different things to me.”

“Not only was it something that Herbie wanted to do a long time ago, but [it represented] everything that we just went through,” the guitarist continued. “I felt like freedom is what I want to know about. That became our new actual LLC as well for our business. We just figured, let’s tie it all in. It all makes sense.”

Coincidentally, the title “United We Stand” has also previously appeared in Journey’s orbit. In 1998, the same year Perry left Journey for the second (and seemingly final) time, the singer released a tune also called “United We Stand” on the soundtrack to the animated film Quest for Camelot.

The Best Song From Every Journey Album

Singers may come, and singers most certainly may go, but some great songs remain.

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Review – Bright Eyes Seized Their Indie Crown at Mission Ballroom

Bright Eyes brought the “highs and lows” to Mission Ballroom. The Mile High City welcomed indie band Bright Eyes last Thursday night, June 30, for their first tour since the pandemic. This spring and summer tour supports their latest full-length album Down in the Weeds, Where the World Once Was. An arrangement of unique styles hit the stage with a fiery presence. Sans guitarist Mike Mogis, who was out with COVID, the band stepped out of the dark into the eyes of their awaiting fans. Their animated and funky vibes provided a pulsating release for any anguish Thursday night. 

Doors opened as the sun set in the cloudy sky, allowing for the seasoned audience to settle with their beers and peers. Platform combat boots and mom jeans filled the venue. General admission included general seating, likely to allow guests to enjoy the show comfortably. Many moved their party after one too many shots of Maker’s MarkFans brought anyone they could think of to the show.

Hurray for the Riff-Raff lit the stage pink with their kaleidoscopic and mind-expanding sound as the opener for the night. Led by Alynda Segarra, the band floated onto select tour dates. Their hour set was filled with guests like three-fourths of Canine Heart Sounds and instrumentalist Miwi La Lupa from the Bright Eyes backing band. Segarra’s “nature punk” voice carried through the crowd like a sonic wave. Each note enchantingly left the audience in a dreamy haze.

Bright Eyes sported a Snellen Eye Chart in the background — the eye chart most commonly used for eye exams. The play on their moniker was inspired by a scene from Planet of the Apes. The audience lost their minds when Bright Eyes’ backing band hit the stage. This crowd was ready and would not be disappointed. Shirts were lost within the first three songs. And who could pull off mic drops on the intro? Conor Oberst. He had the right after nailing a dance break and capturing the energy of the audience within seconds. “I need my oxygen,” he said with sweat caked in his hair.

Bright Eyes switched between emotions rapidly. During one song your heart raced along with the sticks hitting each drum; the next, you could feel a tear sliding down your cheek. Bright Eyes took the audience through grief, trauma and survival. Oberst took a moment to remind everyone to take the next person’s health into consideration because, as the age-old saying goes, you don’t know what they’re going through. “Everyone had plans in 2020,” he said. The band not only touched on the political but also unfolded memories of the past two and a half years.

The mastery behind the backing band was breathtaking. The variety of instruments included clarinet, baritone saxophone, violins and more. The various style changes progressed throughout the show easy as a breeze. The band was all smiles as they played along to the experimental indie rock featuring head-turning soloists with a clear passion for their art. The set list spanned the breadth of their catalog, but Bright Eyes’ emotional take on indie-folk primed the crowd for whatever was to come next, including an emotional encore.

Photography by Adrienne Thomas 

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Stephen Pearcy Reveals He Almost Started Band With Crue Members

As it turned out, the ’80s were pretty great for Motley Crue and Ratt, but Stephen Pearcy reveals there was a moment in the early ’80s where both acts could have had a different trajectory if a proposed band pairing had worked out. Pearcy reveals that a foursome of himself, Robbin Crosby, Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee had gotten so far as rehearsing together, but ultimately continued with their respective bands and decided not to pursue their collective.

The revelation came up as the singer was speaking with Tommy London of SiriusXM’s Hair Nation. As transcribed by Blabbermouth, Pearcy says the formation of their group came about from their Sunset Strip days of the early ’80s. “Robbin and I used to go out all the time into Hollywood — you know, ‘The [Sunset] Strip, yeah. You’ve gotta be seen. You’ve gotta be out there.’ Well, Motley was doing the same thing. Nikki, Tommy, Vince — they’d be doing the same thing. You know, tripping down the Strip, going to the Rainbow, going here, getting fucked up,” he recalled.

“So anyway, we meet them on the Strip, hanging out. We became friends and we became The Gladiators, which was our street thing there, when we went out together. And we each had names, which goes back to [Robbin’s nickname] ‘King’. I don’t know if it was Nikki who gave him that nickname or Robbin gave it to himself,” continued the singer.

He then added, “So in ’82, we really became close friends. I don’t think Nikki was ever really satisfied. Musicians were coming and going in bands, as the whole implosion was getting going — [in] ’81, ’82 in L.A. and that whole Strip thing. He wasn’t happy with his band at that moment. So, yes, it’s a true story. Robbin, Nikki, Tommy and myself, and me on guitar, were rehearsing at Mickey Ratt’s rehearsal in Culver City there. And I believe we rehearsed for a couple of times.”

Reflecting on that time, Pearcy says, “I don’t know if we wanted to start a band or if we were just jamming, but something was getting intense in there. And Nikki is, like, ‘Nah. I’m gonna go do my thing.’ And I said, ‘Well, I’m here. Me and Robbin are doing our thing.’ And so be it.”

The singer adds, “True story. True story. So, if that would have been a band, it would have been a great band, actually. I don’t know what songs we played, but we were very supportive of each other back in the day, in the beginning, yeah. It was great.”

As it turns out, Motley Crue would find their breakout with 1983’s Shout at the Devil album, their second release as a band. And they would be one of the biggest heavy bands of the ’80s. Ratt also fared quite well in the ’80s. Their biggest success came with 1984’s Out of the Cellar debut album featuring the single “Round and Round.”

Top 80 Hard Rock + Metal Albums of the 1980s

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Scorpions: World Wide Live album review

Scorpions: World Wide Live

(Image credit: Havest/EMI)

Countdown
Coming Home
Blackout
Bad Boys Running Wild
Loving You Sunday Morning
Make It Real
Big City Nights
Coast to Coast
Holiday
Still Loving You
Rock You Like a Hurricane
Can’t Live Without You
Another Piece of Meat
Dynamite
The Zoo
No One Like You
Can’t Get Enough
Six String Sting
Can’t Get Enough

While 1978’s Tokyo Tapes might be the hardcore fans’ favourite, 1985’s World Wide Live captures Scorpions at their captures the band at their pyramid-building,  imposingly practised and highly commercial peak, with the occasional flower-powered excursions of the Uli Jon Roth era consigned to rock’s great dustbin. Instead, the performances were relentlessly taut and ruthlessly delivered.  

The recording was a by-product of a documentary project that centred around the band’s their life as a touring rock band. The film crew followed the band around the US, Asia, Europe and South America, and recorded five shows in San Diego, Los Angeles, Costa Mesa, Paris and Cologne for the album.

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Kiss Remake Is Now a Dance Club Hit

A remake of Kiss’ 1979 classic “I Was Made for Lovin’ You” has become a 2022 dance hit.

The new version comes courtesy of Oliver Heldens, a Dutch electronic music producer who is regarded as one of the top DJs in the world. Heldens initially created a “funk and disco inspired bassline” in 2015, then connected with Chic’s Nile Rodgers to expand the tune further.

“He also loved it and he blessed the track with his signature jamming electric funk guitars, which was a dream come true for me,” Heldens admitted, before explaining how he decided to infuse Kiss into his creation.

“Finding the right vocal for this track has been a real journey,” the DJ revealed. “I’ve done over a dozen toplines on it with several singers/songwriters, but in the end the hook of Kiss’ iconic hit ‘I Was Made for Lovin’ You’ turned out to be a match made in heaven.”

The new version omits the original’s verses and instead just repeats the chorus in various ways with instrumental dance fills in between. The track was released in May and has steadily climbed the charts ever since. It recently cracked the Top 20 on Mediabase’s Dance Chart and has racked up more than 8 million streams on Spotify.

Released in May 1979, “I Was Made for Lovin’ You” was a major hit for Kiss. Still, the tune was polarizing, as it featured the hard rock group embracing a disco sound which turned off many of their hardcore fans.

Despite its success, Kiss bassist Gene Simmons has admitted disdain for the track. “I hate playing that song to [this] day,” the rocker revealed in 2018. “Stadiums full of people jump up and down like Biblical locusts, they go nuts, with tattoos and grills on … they’re all jumping up and down and I’m going, ‘Do, do, do, do do … ’ Kill me now!”

The success of the new version of “I Was Made for Lovin’ You” follows a recent trend of classic tracks getting reworked for modern dance audiences. In 2021, “Cold Heart” — a collaboration of Elton John, pop star Dua Lipa and Australian electronic trio Pnau — became a worldwide hit. The tune mashed-up John’s previous songs “Rocket Man,” “Sacrifice,” “Where’s the Shoorah?” and “Kiss the Bride.”

Listen to Oliver Heldens’ Version of ‘I Was Made For Lovin’ You’

Kiss Lineup Changes: A Complete Guide

An in-depth guide to all of the personnel changes undergone by the “hottest band in the land,” Kiss.

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Arkells wow Jazz Fest crowd and Bessborough Gardens main stage

Arkells left behind the trappings of the indie rock pigeonhole years ago. They’re going for something grander.

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Arkells are more or less built for this.

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The band has its summer festival shows down to a science, honed over years and refined down to the minute. They delivered an infectious pop-rock performance to a packed crowd at the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival TD Mainstage at Bessborough Gardens on Saturday night.

They also don’t have to twist anyone’s arm. The first few driving chords of well-loved set mainstays “Leather Jacket” and “Michigan Left” were easy sells for an audience who have memorized the lyrics to the point that frontman Max Kerman hardly had to sing.

Kerman, regularly running the length of the stage and flashing a megawatt grin, had an easy rapport with his audience, able to give chapter and verse on a Saskatoon Arkells show from 2008 in his stage banter. It’s a winning way to build a relationship with a crowd and make them dance, even if the band has come a long way from those early days.

Make no mistake: Arkells left behind the trappings of the indie rock pigeonhole years ago. They’re going for something grander.

Backed by a four-piece brass band who slipped in and out of some light choreography, it was almost a spectacle. Some of came from tongue-in-cheek staging, like when Kerman called a “band meeting” to settle a jokey beef between keyboard player Anthony Carone and drummer Tim Oxford that led to some musically impressive duelling solos.

Arkells headline the SaskTel Jazz Festival MainStage at the Bessborough Gardens on July 2, 2022. (Nick Pearce/Saskatoon StarPhoenix)
Arkells headline the SaskTel Jazz Festival MainStage at the Bessborough Gardens on July 2, 2022. (Nick Pearce/Saskatoon StarPhoenix) jpg

When Kerman recited the band’s three rules for its live shows (dance, look after each other and don’t wait), he was hanging his shingle on big, exuberant showmanship that relied on some respectable crowd pleasing.

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Arkells have no qualms about putting their own spins on standards to make that happen. The band dipped into R&B classic “Land of Thousand Dances” before launching into ABBA’s “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)” for an encore. The horn section made these songs sing, but the guest spots of the band’s openers, singer-songwriter Shawnee Kish and hip hop artist Haviah Mighty, to the ABBA hit hint at something welcome.

Arkells have an all of the above strategy to making a crowd dance. It’s let them embrace artists and music that rarely appear in high voltage rock shows like theirs, lending some needed surprise to older songs and a bigger punch to their shows.

It’s far from their first show on the summer festival circuit, but evolving the tried and true feels like a long way from aging.

The news seems to be flying at us faster all the time. From COVID-19 updates to politics and crime and everything in between, it can be hard to keep up. With that in mind, the Saskatoon StarPhoenix has created an Afternoon Headlines newsletter that can be delivered daily to your inbox to help make sure you are up to date with the most vital news of the day. Click here to subscribe.

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A KISS Classic Cover Just Cracked the Top 20 on the Dance Chart

A KISS classic is getting new life in the summer of 2022, as Dutch producer Oliver Heldens currently has his version of “I Was Made for Lovin’ You” inside the Top 20 of the Mediabase Dance Chart this week.

The song, released in May, has enjoyed a steady climb up the charts, climbing another five spots this past week to hit the No. 20 position. And Heldens isn’t alone on the track, pulling in Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Nile Rodgers to play guitar. Rodgers, best known for his work with disco outfit Chic as well as working with Daft Punk, David Bowie, Duran Duran and more, also joins the London-based House Gospel Choir on the song.

The original “I Was Made for Lovin’ You” was released in 1979 and hit No. 11 on the Billboard Hot 100. Being release at the height of the disco era, it clearly has a bit of influence from the predominant musical style at the time. That danceable vibe, it turns out, is one of the things that brought the song to Heldens’ attention.

“When I made the very funk and disco inspired bass line for this track in 2015, I knew it was one of my best bass lines since ‘Gecko,’ and I just had to send it to one of my all-time heroes Nile Rodgers,” recalls Heldens. “He also loved it and he blessed the track with his signature jamming electric funk guitars, which was a dream come true for me!”

He continues, “Finding the right vocal for this track has been a real journey though, I’ve done over a dozen of toplines on it with several singers/songwriters, but in the end the hook of KISS’ iconic hit ‘I Was Made For Lovin’ You’ turned out to be a match made in heaven. And with the extraordinary House Gospel Choir on board, they managed to make it sound even more heavenly! This song has been such a vibe in my sets, so I’m happy it’s finally out now! I hope you like it.”

The track is currently available in multiple platforms here. Check out the song in full below.

Heldens is currently touring in Europe but will return to North America later this month for shows in Quebec City, Denver, Chicago and Toronto. Stay up to date with his touring here.

Oliver Heldens With Nile Rodgers + House Gospel Choir, “I Was Made for Lovin’ You”

Top 70 Hard Rock + Metal Albums of the 1970s

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Burntfield share video for Empty Dream

Finnish prog trio Burntfield have announced that they have released their second album Impermanence on vinyl. You can watch a video for the song Empty Dream below.

Originally released through the Progressive Gears label last year, the follow-up to 2018’s Hereafter debut, was met with critical acclaim upon release.

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Watch Carrie Underwood Guest With Guns N’ Roses in London

Country star Carrie Underwood appeared alongside Guns N’ Roses during their show in London last night.

She guested on the classic track “Sweet Child O’ Mine,” then returned for set-closer “Paradise City” at the 63,000-capacity Tottenham Hotspur soccer stadium. Performance clips can be seen below.

Frontman Axl Rose performed the same two songs with Underwood during her appearance at the Stagecoach country music festival in May – a moment she told fans had been “the greatest night of my life.” She’d previously played the tracks a number of times herself, alongside GNR staples “November Rain” and “Patience.”

In 2020, speaking on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon, Underwood had recalled a trip to Las Vegas to see Rose’s band while her own group was on tour. “It’s kind of a life-long dream of mine I never thought would happen,” she said. “I couldn’t waste that opportunity, so I abandoned my husband, abandoned my children, went to Vegas and saw Guns N’ Roses. Amazing!”

She continued: “Usually when I go to concerts I’m like, in a box on the side, which is great. … But you miss the energy of the crowd. Because we were in Vegas, we were just in there with everyone else; it was absolutely incredible. You could feel everybody – everybody was screaming, I was screaming – I was like, ‘I’m never gonna see none of these people ever again. I’m gonna act like a fool!’”

Watch Carrie Underwood Guest With Guns N’ Roses on ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’

Watch Carrie Underwood Guest With Guns N’ Roses on ‘Paradise City’

Guns N’ Roses Lineup Changes: A Complete Guide (We Think)

Few bands have impacted rock ‘n’ roll the way they have, and even fewer have weathered as many changes.