Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Grim Reaper - St. Vitus, Brooklyn NY - March 18, 2016 Review, Videos and Photos

In 2014, Steve Grimmett's Grim Reaper started their U.S. tour at Saint Vitus Bar in Brooklyn (See that review by clicking here).  Well they say things go in cycles, so here comes Grim Reaper in 2016 starting their U.S. tour at Saint Vitus once again on Friday, March 18.

Like any show at Saint Vitus, we started the night next door having some delicious and cheap Mexican and some cold cervezas (I highly recommend the chicken burrito!).  By the time we went to the club, the last of the opening bands was on as we checked out the merchandise.  Very cool shirts and tour poster!

The place was packed, but this was expected.  Last time they started the tour with two nights here and this single show definitely appeared to be sold out.  We thought we might have trouble getting a good spot but luckily when the opening band ended, everyone went for pee and beer breaks and we got up right next to the stage where guitarist Richie Yeates would shred away mere inches from my face (and camera) all night long (see the videos below).

Speaking of videos, I only brought my new iPhone to this show as the lights which line the back wall of the Saint Vitus stage and shine out towards the audience always make it a bitch to get good photos here, so instead I took a few still shots and mainly got some killer super up close videos to tell the story.

That story is titled "Heavy Metal Fucking Done Right!" (Yeah...it's a bit of a wordy title and probably wouldn't be featured on Oprah's book club, but most definitely rings true.)

Along with Richie on guitar (on his first visit/tour of America - hope it's going great Richie!), we have Chaz Grimaldi back on bass (M3 a mere month away Chaz...our beer will be cold and plentiful) and the skin bashing monster Paul White holding down the beat.  Then there's the metal legend himself, the voice, Steve Grimmett.

No first show of tour issues at all.  The band was tight and the vocals were killer!

The set was book ended by their two "hits" opening with "Rock You To Hell" and closing ninety minutes later with a massive audience sing-a-long of "See You In Hell". In between we had an even mix of tracks off of both of those albums as well as "Fear No Evil" (including the title track).  

Based on my memory and others on setlist.fm (I guess none of us took notes that night) I believe this was the setlist in order (it's at least 90% correct) along with the videos I took:

Rock You to Hell (video below)

Night of the Vampire
Lust For Freedom
Wrath of the Ripper
Now or Never
Fear No Evil (video below)

Let The Thunder Roar
Matter of Time
Rock Me 'Til I Die
Don't Talk To Strangers (Dio cover - video below)

Waysted Love
Final Scream (video below)

See You In Hell (video below)

After the set we headed out to the bar area and got to meet and chat with all the member's of the band. Great guys one and all.

This 30th Anniversary of "Fear No Evil" tour is still running for a few weeks and if it's coming anywhere near you and you don't go, well shit, then you can't be helped.

If you got tickets already or plan on picking them up, you're in for a night of metal done right.  

I look forward to the next tour ("Rock You To Hell" 30th anniversary tour?) and I'll be back up against the stage once again at Saint Vitus helping them kick it off.  Everyone who was at this show I'm sure will be too.

If you dug this go to the MostPeopleAreBlank Facebook page by following this link and click the "Like" button to join to be kept up to date on future posts, to comment, share and take part in our giveaways and contests! 

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

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Autograph - Wolf Den 3/26/16 Review, Pics, Video + WIN SIGNED CD!!

NOTE:  At the bottom of this review is instructions on how to enter a drawing to win a signed copy of Autograph's new CD EP "Louder"  I hope everyone who reads this clicks the link and the "Like" button which is literally all it takes to enter you in this contest and all future contests.

It's early Saturday afternoon, March 26 2016, and I'm bored out of my skull.  Had some potential plans with friends, but one of those weekends where everything fell through.

The Batman vs Superman flick looks alright, but a quick check of venues shows Autograph is playing a free show at The Wolf Den at Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, CT.  I hadn't been in a while so I hopped in the car and two and a half hours later, a little after 5:00pm I was in.

The last time I saw Autograph was in the 80's when all I knew was their iconic hit "Turn Up The Radio".  I had the opportunity to see them two years ago at the M3 festival, but if I remember correctly, they were on around the crack of noon on Saturday that year and it's damn hard to get to M3 when the gates open on day 2 after the annual debauchery of the Friday night Kix-off party.  So thirty or so years later, not much had changed in what I knew about Autograph other than I remembered they had a followup single "Blondes in Black Cars" and knew their red headed cury haired original singer Steve Plunkett was no longer in the band so to be totally honest, I didn't have any expectations for this show, I just figured with a few beers it would be a good hang.  

I'm glad to say lately, much like most of the few bands I saw for the first time on the Monsters of Rock Cruise, I've been very pleasantly surprised.

Autograph were great!

The band currently features original guitarist Steve Lynch and original bassist Randy Rand.  Marc Wieland completes the rhythm section on drums and Simon Daniels handles the lead vocals and guitars.

The set consisted of fifteen songs mainly from their three albums released in the 80's plus two songs from their brand new EP "Louder" - "I Lost My Mind In America" and "You Are Us, We Are You".  Both songs (as well as the other two new songs on "Louder") are catchy rock radio friendly tunes (if friendly rock radio still existed that is) that fit in well with their older material (which I wish I had picked up back in the day), but "You Are Us, We Are You" is something special.

It's basically a thank you/call to arms/celebration of the fans of this scene TODAY.  Those of you who go to shows, who buy the new releases, who travel to the festivals and cruises this song is for you and for the bands that keep it alive. 

Here's the setlist (along with some videos I shot):
Deep End
Dance All Night
Loud and Clear
Bad Boy (Video below.  The sound on this one slightly overblew the mic on my camera.  The other vids are shot right up against the stage and sound is excellent)

Blondes in Black Cars
When The Sun Goes Down
All I'm Gonna Take
You Are Us, We Are You
Send Her To Me
Cloud 10

Steve Lynch Guitar Solo

My Girlfriend's Boyfriend Isn't Me
I Lost My Mind In America
She Never Looked That Good For Me
Crazy World
Turn Up The Radio

So there ya go.  Next time Autograph comes around, I highly suggest you go see them.  If it's in the NY/NJ area, you'll probably see me there too.  Afterward hang out and say hi to the guys who all hung around to meet and greet everyone who wanted something signed or wanted a pic.  

Great Guys.  Great Set.  I'm glad all my original plans fell through.

Now the contest!

So I picked up their new CD and got the band to sign it and figured it was time for another give away.  If you already like the MostPeopleAreBlank Facebook page, then you're already entered. 

If you enjoy this blog (or hell, if this is the first time you're reading it), all you have to do is go to the MostPeopleAreBlank Facebook page by following this link and click the "Like" button (pictured below) to join to be kept up to date on future posts, to comment, share and take part in our giveaways and contests! I'll announce the winner in about a week and it's no cost to you, I'll pay for shipping etc.  Just click and cross your fingers.

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

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Joe Lynn Turner with Steve Brown of Trixter - Blackthorn 51, Elmhurst, NY February 28,2016 - Photos, Videos and Review

I always try to catch Joe Lynn Turner when he comes to the area.  It's been a few years since I last saw him at Dingbatz in NJ.  

He was ending February with three shows in the area, but I was still down in Florida from the Monsters of Rock Cruise on Friday and Saturday was a hellish travel day (and if I went to a show that night it would have been Black Sabbath at Madison Square Garden, but when your plane has to turn around mid-flight to return to the airport and a flight which should take less than three hours has you on the plane for seven and you just partied for a week on a boat...well you tend to go hit the hay when you land).  So that left Sunday night in Queens.  

Sure I had to get up early the next day and Joe wouldn't be coming on until at least 11, but I couldn't miss it.

We arrived at Blackthorn 51 and the last of about six or seven opening bands(!), Pussywolf, was on stage.  I dug 'em.  A heavy as all hell all-gal monster stoner riff-a-rama trio.  Hope to catch them again some time.

After a bit of a break, Joe came out on stage and opened with Rainbow's "Death Alley Driver".  For this short run his killer band featured special guest guitarist Steve Brown of Trixter who definitely seemed to be having a blast playing these classic tunes.

The set was pretty similar to what I've seen him perform in the past...almost all Rainbow with a couple of Deep Purple covers.  The surprise of the set was his inclusion of one of the songs he recorded with Yngwie Malmsteen.  A great version of "Rising Force" where Steve really showed off his shredding chops.  Here's the video:

And here's "Stone Cold"

And one of my favorites, "Can't Happen Here"

The only disappointing aspect of the show was the turnout.  I'd say there were only about 70 attendees by the time Joe came on and that just sucks.  It's why he constantly tours Europe where he plays to packed houses and rarely comes to the US.  I guess I should feel lucky though, when he does come to the US, he always seems to play the NY/NJ area.  I did hear the night before on Long Island was packed though.

I was lucky enough to score a setlist (and drumstick) and here it is below.  I almost got one of Steve's picks but the woman directly in front of me literally headbutted me out of the way.  I think it was an accident...  

On this night they just played the standard 13 song set.  The night before they took requests after this set and evidently played some of the "Alts" listed.  

Bummer that we got the short set, but what we got was killer.

Enjoy the videos and the photos and next time he tours, go see Joe Lynn Turner.  Amazing voice performing classic songs.

If you dug this go to the MostPeopleAreBlank Facebook page by following this link and click the "Follow" button to join to be kept up to date on future posts, to comment, share and take part in our giveaways and contests! Click any photos to enlarge them to full screen.  Also follow on twitter @MostPeopleBlank   Then, of course, as always - Rock on and Enjoy - Paul