Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The Monkees: Micky Dolenz, Peter Tork, Bobby Hart live at Chiller 2016 NJ

One of the big guests appearances at Chiller Theatre convention in Parsippany NJ this Spring was the reunion of Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork of The Monkees along with songwriter Bobby Hart.

The trio performed as part of the Rock & Roll Party at the Sheraton on Saturday April 23, 2016 backed by the house band for the night, The Dead Elvi.

Setlist:
Last Train to Clarksville
Words
(I'm Not Your) Steppin' Stone

Micky left the stage at this point and Tork and Hart performed "Gonna Buy Me a Dog".

Hart departed and Tork stayed on to kick off the David Bowie tribute with "Diamond Dogs" after which he bid farewell.

I didn't film this, but the whole set is easily found on Youtube.  Here's some shots I took that night though:
















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Monday, April 25, 2016

VIDEO: Martha Davis of the Motels performs David Bowie's "Soul Love" at Chiller 2016



Martha Davis of The Motels and Actor/Saxophonist Tim Cappello were two of the guests at the 2016 Chiller Theatre convention in Parsippany, NJ.  On Saturday night, April 23, 2016 as part of the Rock & Roll Party there was a David Bowie tribute led by the Dead Elvi.  

Davis and Cappello joined the band for this great version of "Soul Love"




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Saturday, April 9, 2016

Metal Allegiance - The Chance, Poughkeepsie NY - April 4, 2016

Evidently not many of the Poughkeepsie area metal heads felt like venturing out in the cold and leftover snow to The Chance this past Monday, but for the few of us that did (I'd say 70 in attendance at this show), we got a hell of a show for twenty bucks.



Metal Allegiance were supposed to hit the stage around 10pm and my buddy Anthony and I had some stuff to do before hand so we met inside the Chance at about 9:30 and the first opening band (of three) was still on.  Ugh...it was going to be rough getting up for work the next day.



The opener (I didn't catch their name) played a very short set and there was a quick turn around between bands and Chains Over Razors were up next.  Good straight ahead metal three piece with just drums, guitar and a vocalist.  Hell, who needs bass?  They played to the small crowd like they were playing to a packed house really working to get everyone involved.  Good stuff, they did about a half hour.



Next to None was next and again very quick breakdown/setup between bands mainly because all they had to do for the drums was uncover Mike Portnoy's set because his son Max is the drummer in this band and played on his dad's kit.



I bet these kids (well, to mid 40's me they're kids) destroy on say the warped tour - super energetic, all obviously good musicians, just not the genre of metal I like - although their Slipknot cover was good and the insane running leap keyboardist/vocalist Thomas Cuce took off his keyboard stand down into the pit was one of the craziest things I've seen at at the Chance in quite some time.  He had to have been easily 12 feet in the air and must have just missed hitting the back of the pit barricade when he landed.  Definitely kept you watching.  I will say as well that even though this crowd was small, Next to None definitely had a contingent of fans there to see them instead of the headliners.  Just seemed an odd fit but has to be cool for the Portnoy's to tour together so rock on.  I think they played about 35 minutes. (one note, the mix for them was HORRIBLE.  The bass kept overblowing the rest of the band and the drums had the sounded like he was hitting the plastic lids of garbage cans.  There were no issues with the mix for the rest of the bands, so not sure why they suffered)



So finally at probably around 11:30 Metal Allegiance hit the stage and oh man...all I can say is if you're a fan of classic metal you NEED to see this band.  



If you look on their website, you'll see they list 25 artists as part of the Allegiance and you never know who is going to show up at a particular show.  At the Chance there were no "Special Guests" just the core band touring at this time which is:

Mike Portnoy on Drums
Mark Menghi on Bass
Alex Skolnick on Guitar
Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal on Guitar
Mark Osegueda on vocals
Chuck Billy on vocals



Mark sings I'd say about 60% of the songs and Chuck does the rest with a couple of tunes where they trade off.  Alex does a bit more lead work (including Van Halen's "Eruption") but Bumblefoot has plenty of time to shine throughout on his doubleneck guitar.



While they have an album and would play three originals, all of which were great, especially the unbelievable showstopper "Pledge of Allegiance", what they really are is the greatest metal cover/tribute band you will ever see.  Check out this amazing setlist:

The Hellion (pre-recorded intro)
Electric Eye (Judas Priest)
The Ides of March (Iron Maiden)
Wrathchild (Iron Maiden)
Can't Kill The Devil
Balls to the Wall (Accept)
Heaven & Hell (Black Sabbath)
Creeping Death (Metallica)
Territory (Sepultura)
Dying Song
Pledge of Allegiance
Into the Void (Black Sabbath - video below)

Iron Fist (Motorhead)
Runnin' With the Devil (Van Halen)
Eruption (Van Halen)
Whole Lotta Rosie (AC/DC)
Encore:
Seek & Destroy (Metallica - video below)


I believe it was after "Pledge of Allegiance" that Mike Portnoy took the mic to address the crowd and said how the band had discussed backstage that at this point they would decide if they would do the whole set or not or end it early.  Hell maybe this is the standard rap at every show, but it didn't seem like it and I think the cheers of those of us who came out, along with the fact that these guys don't get to tour and play together a whole lot gave us the full deal.



So there you have it.  I have no clue why this show wasn't packed.  Testament sells this place out when they play here and this was almost like "hey Chuck and Alex from Testament are coming to town and bringing their incredible musician fans to play all of your favorite tunes."  How this was not packed out boggles the mind...maybe word just isn't out yet on who/what Metal Allegiance is.  I know those of us who were there will be spreading the gospel and hopefully Metal Allegiance will give us another shot on their next tour.



Bonus, at one point Chuck Billy came over and grabbed one of Alex Skolnick's Guitar picks and threw it to me.  Nice!  Thanks Chuck!



Check out the rest of the photos below

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Monday, April 4, 2016

KIX - Wolf Den at Mohegan Sun, CT - April 1, 2016

It's April Fool's Day.  It's a Friday.  I'm at work on break and see Guns n Roses is reuniting at the Troubadour 3000 plus miles away that night.  What am I gonna do here in New York?  Well, certainly not sit at home cause now I have show thoughts on the brain.

Text my buddy Jimmy.  Kix...tonight...free...Wolf Den.  He's in.

It's gonna be a close one.  Wolf Den shows tend to start right at 8:00pm so the casino can get everyone back out and gambling after.  Hopefully we wouldn't hit too much CT rush hour traffic on the ride there.  We did alright.  Parked on the top level parking deck at 7:45.

The Wolf Den was pretty full, but we were able to get inside (hoping the band would do a meet n greet by the merch after, but was not to be on this night, although Steve shock hands and signed some stuff from the side of the stage).  Saw some other friends (Jen, Greg, Andrea) and the rocking commenced.



Because it was last minute and because I kind of wanted to just have a few beers and rock out a bit at this one I didn't bring my camera, just had the ole iPhone so really all this is, is a couple of pics and two videos.

Hell if you're reading this you already like Kix and have probably seen them a ton of times like I have.  A good bunch of you will probably see them again in 25 days at the M3 "Kix-off" Party (if you see me there, say howdy).  I'll also see them again about a month after that when they play The Chance in Poughkeepsie on June 25.  Yep, once a month for three months.  They are that good.



Afterward we stop by the merchandise table and how could I resist the "Cold Shower" umbrella?!  Jimmy got one years ago (although his was the little compact expanding version) and I've always admired it.  I needed it for my collection and because I'm awesome I got one for someone else who has wanted one for ages.



So that's it.  Enjoy the videos and see you at M3 or Poughkeepsie.  Oh here's the setlist:


Here's "Mighty Mouth":



Here's "Yeah, Yeah, Yeah":



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Saturday, April 2, 2016

Iron Maiden - Madison Square Garden, NYC - March 30, 2016

There's something special about Iron Maiden pre-show festivities when they play Madison Sqaure Garden in New York City and this past Wednesday, March 30, 2016 was no different.



Including myself, we had five of our crew coming down, catching the 3:54 out of Poughkeepsie and arriving at Grand Central Station a little before six.  The train was packed by the time it rolled in and it appeared at least half the passengers who got off were headed over to the Garden.  We decided to walk because the weather was perfect.



We usually hit up the Blarney Rock, but thought about checking out Stout right next door as there was going to be a big crew of the M3 gang there, but it was overly packed and the Rock still had a little breathing room at that point and only a two person deep wait at the bar.  I shall have to wait a few more weeks to drink merrily with my M3 friends down in Maryland.



The jukebox was playing non stop Maiden and as the drinks flowed the sing a longs grew louder. Here's a little "Flight of Icarus" for your listening non-pleasure:

video

I think there's so few Metal bands left that are big enough to play the Garden (Hell who's left?  Sabbath just did their last two there...other than Maiden, probably just Metallica who hasn't played there since 2009), that when one comes to town, everyone wants to celebrate.  



You share stories of past shows, talk about hopes for that night's set list and raise your pints and sing some more in unison.  Here's a little "Run To The Hills" to make your eardrums bleed (I promise this is the last one...but yes I have a few more).  I apologize as deciding if I want to keep the camera vertical or horizontal during the length of the recording evidently becomes a major challenge after a few Guinness.

video

We decided to head in about 8:15 so we had time to hit the merchandise booth and to our dismay, all the shirts made specifically for this particular show were already sold out.  I heard it featured the Statue of Liberty (and of course Eddie) and was super cool.  Oh well, next time perhaps perhaps one less drink/song at the bar.



Maiden came on at about 8:45 or 8:50 and honestly I've seen at least a dozen write-ups of the show already so I'll be brief and just share my photos and video I took of "Iron Maiden" which ended the main set.  



For my tastes it was a little too much new album when so many classics were left off the set, but I knew this going in and honestly that's pretty typical for Maiden when they are promoting a new album - they like to play the new stuff like any band does.  



The classics we did get were great and some cool deep cuts that hadn't been played in decades like "Children of the Damned" and "Powerslave" were excellent additions on this tour.



The stage show was killer.  Multiple different Eddie appearances.  The musicianship was amazing.  Bruce's voice was fantastic.  



The set was basically just about 2 hours and was made up of these songs:

If Eternity Should Fail
Speed of Light
Children of the Damned
Tears of a Clown
The Red and the Black
The Trooper
Powerslave
Death or Glory
The Book of Souls
Hallowed Be Thy Name
Fear of the Dark
Iron Maiden (Video Below)



Encore:
Number of the Beast
Blood Brothers
Wasted Years



















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Click any photos to enlarge them to full screen.  Also follow on twitter @MostPeopleBlank   Then, of course, as always - Rock on and Enjoy - Paul