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State Cows - 2013 The Second One (Germusica Promo)
Judge Jackson - 2013 '6' (Head First Ent Promo)
Amaranthe - 2013 The Nexus (CD just landed!)
Snowfall - 2013 Cold Silence
Phil Vincent - 2013 Face It/Solar Flare
The Vicar - 2013 Songbook #1
Yes- 1979 Tormato
Oasis - 2002 Heathen Chemistry
Wigwam- 1970 Tombstone Valentine
Blast Furnace - 1971 Blast Furnace
Jim Capaldi - 1978 The Contender
Brian Davison - 1970 Every Which Way
Freedom - 1970 Freedom At Last
Kings X - 1989 Gretchen Goes To Nebraska
Leggat - 1982 Illuminations
Three Man Army - 1971 A Third Of A Lifetime
Ambrosia - 1978 Life Beyond L.A. (2013 Friday Music 2CD Reissue)
Manfred Mann's Earth Band - 1996 The Best Of (Warner Brothers US Compilation)
Wings - 1975 Venus And Mars
Helen Schneider - 1981 Schneider With The Kick
Carly Simon - 1979 Spy
Omega - 1986 A Fold Arnyekos Oldalan
Bow Wow - Locus 1976 - 1983
FSB - Singles Collection
Blue Oyster Cult - 1986 Club Ninja
Stingray - Revisited
Son Of A Bitch - 1996 Victim You
Six Feet Under - 2013 Unborn
Sammy Hagar - 1977 Red
Suffocation - 2013 Pinnacle Of Bedlam
Jaguar - 1983 Power Games
Kelv Hellrazer 22/04/2013
Shea Roxi - Crying Eyes demo
Shea Roxi - I Got What You Want demo
David A Saylor - Pre Mini LP Demos
Huwey Lucas - Forever
Lowside - Lowside
David Shaw 01/05/2013
Six Shot Revival - Greatest Hits Vol 1
Hogjaw - Sons Of The Western Skies
Aerosmith - 1878 Live In Boston (FM Broadcast)
Beitthemeans - Head Held High
Hooker - Rock N Roll
|Total Content Panel|
Blogs by this user:|
Mar, 26 -12 20:00 Retroshare!!! (0)
Feb, 03 -12 08:00 The Megaupload Saga (6)
Nov, 26 -11 02:15 November 2011 Blog (3)
Jun, 26 -11 03:44 Latest Blog (4)
Jun, 26 -11 03:34 What is it with Facebook? (10)
Feb, 10 -11 15:16 What a weird time to be alive.. (2)
Dec, 31 -10 00:21 Year end wrap (3)
Nov, 05 -10 02:19 The case of: RIAA vs Thomas-Rasset (3)
Jul, 12 -10 15:09 New Glossary & Dictionary tool (4)
Jun, 26 -10 14:22 Changing Times Ahead (7)
Apr, 20 -10 15:17 Volcanoes, Gigs, Playing Live, the Industry (20 April 2010) (1)
Feb, 02 -10 13:54 The News Section (1)
Jan, 31 -10 23:26 The return of Audio (3)
Nov, 17 -09 02:08 What's Going On? (17 Nov 2009) (0)
Sep, 05 -09 08:23 Todaze Snippets (4 Sept 2009) (3)
Sep, 02 -09 08:57 It's been an interesting ol' time Down Under.. music wise.. (2)
Aug, 14 -09 05:04 20 Greatest Anthems (8)
Aug, 12 -09 10:05 Blog: Is the LP/Album format on the outer? (1)
Aug, 08 -09 03:47 Blog: The Rise Of The Blogspot Phenomenon (2)
Jun, 27 -09 14:44 The passing of Michael Jackson (10)
Jun, 03 -09 03:34 Blog: Z Rock = Zero! (2)
May, 26 -09 09:22 Blog: Who's Got Talent? (7)
May, 21 -09 13:23 Blog: Wintry Weather, Illegal Downloads, Piracy, and some new Releases! (1)
May, 13 -09 07:37 Blog: It's our 10TH Anniversary! (6)
May, 13 -09 06:50 Blog: May 2009 Happenings and other general stuff (0)
Call me paranoid, call me cautious. After all, we've seen the downfall of Megaupload in the online cyberlocker world, plus we've seen the departure of the excellent Torrent site BTJunkie from Internet Disneyland.|
Now we've got Google changing it's usage policy, Facebook are doing the same, and does one really trust Dropbox to do the right thing by looking after your data? Not to mention, just about every IT vendor wants you (imagine a picture if you will, of Uncle Sam pointing at a finger at you) to join their Cloud Services. Yeah right!! Fuck off all of you. My data is my data and I don't need no fricken cloud to store it all.
Seeing as some of us (some, not most) are into filesharing, no online bastion of music can be considered safe these days. I heard of one poor soul (going by the name of Lostryder) who lost all his online shares in one foul swoop of a button push over at Mediafire. Our Argentinian friend Kissmar has been jumping around different fileshare environments like a cat on a hot tin roof. You know, there was some merit in using older havens such as DC Plus, Soulseek and good old Usenet. However, we've moved from there, and though the last three examples were sort of de-centralised environments, nowadays, you really can't go past an application like Retroshare, which gets my vote as the filesharing application that we should ALL be using.
With Retroshare now available for all platforms, you can do away with the following:
All central server repositories like Rapidshare, Crocko, DepositFiles blah blah.
So let me explain about Retroshare. This is a one stop shop for private, encrypted end to end transmission between trusted friends. It's called an F2F application (Friend To Friend), and relies on encrypted and secure connections between individuals. Retroshare can also be used as an Instant Messenger tool, and again, I emphasise the word 'private' as you will not be hounded by people you don't know or trust (Facebook anyone?). But the real deal comes in the form of shared folders, which are viewable between friends and family such as shared photo albums on your machine, or music and video files. Shared Folders can be set up so that 'friends' only have read only, or download access only, without there being a middle man (a company server storing all your messages, emails, file uploads.. again Facebook anyone?). You can have as many shared folders as you like. It's ideal if you leave home for a few days, leave the home Server on, where you'll be able to access your files over the wire. Great too, if you don't want to be caught with a barrel load of files on your person when intercepted at Airport Security.. bummer dude!
The other cool thing with Retroshare is this: users can set their own Channels, much like You Tube, but without the restrictive user sign-in policy (another one of Google's lasso and lariat catch-all manoeuvres).
You can grab Retroshare off the Net for FREE (as in free beer!!) from: http://retroshare...loads.html. Grab whatever version you need (Win, Lin, Mac), and install. Follow the instructions, get set up, and give me a call @email@example.com. I'm on already. See you there! Let's get together and cause a revolution and leave the past behind!
|The Megaupload Saga
The start to the 2012 year has seen tumultuous change across the technology sector. Though these impacts are spread widely across society, they have touched upon many of us in different ways. |
Obviously the Megaupload situation is a huge one, and one that will reverberate throughout the online cyberlocker industry. The Authorities will have us know that a centralised repository such as Megaupload, and many of its peers (hotfile, rapidshare, easy-share, depositfiles and so on) are easier to target. In the past, overbearing organisations such as the RIAA (who, let's be honest here, are the mouthpiece and foot-solider of 'Hollywood Inc' ) have wanted to pin down ISP's to be the Policemen of the Internet.
A ridiculous suggestion considering the resources required to man such operations for the benefit of a few - and at no cost to organisations like the RIAA either. ISP's would need to foot the bill, in turn passing the costs onto consumers. A double dipping exercise as many legitimate owners of media (CD's, DVD's etc) get hit with a second set of costs to access the Internet at higher prices. That was never going to fly, and the recent court battle of Australian internet provider iiNet as an example throughout the industry, fell flat on its face. Consumers are already getting ripped off left right and center, so it's no wonder there is no sympathy toward 'Hollywood Inc' and its Media Minions.
So with that failure in mind, it was clear to the Authorities that if ISP's weren't the way to close down these cyberlocker sites, then closing them down directly would be the next option.
Also, the difficulty, and time/effort to prosecute individual downloaders (and uploaders) was another principal reason why the RIAA decided to go for the big fish and not the small-fry. Similar outcomes are being pursued by other countries where they have direct jurisdiction, but you can be assured that the sneaky finger of 'Hollywood Inc' is in there right up to their fist. Just this week, one of the biggest filesharing sites in the Ukraine (ex.ua) was shut down, with the RIAA stating it was one of largest of it's kind in Europe.
However, there is a suggestion coming out the US legal fraternity that the US Authorities may have overstepped the mark in terms of making the Megaupload case a 'criminal law' case to the point that it could collapse in court. To effect extradition, the Authorities needed to apply criminal law, but the circumstances should see Megaupload being tried under civil law, particularly if it were seen that Kim Dotcom and his associates were seen to be doing their best to comply with Safe Haven provisions under the DCMA.
Also in the news, the SOPA bill that got turfed out of the US Congress. Thank god for sensibility, but you can be assured that those with Big Pockets and with lobbyist friends in Washington DC, will try and strike again in the near future. Many of these buckethead nay-sayers have a firm mindset that the Internet should never have been given to the Public, and in a PR like endorsement, Jay Rockefeller is absolutely hell-bent on shutting down the Internet, deeming it a security risk. To whom I wonder? Big business? Rockefeller interests? You can see where I'm going with this right?
Not to be outdone, Europe is not the free haven for those wanting to undermine legitimate activity on the Net. Sweden is doing its best to wipe Pirate Bay off the map, though in other countries such as Germany and Spain, liberties are still quite abundant for Internet users. In Germany, you cannot be extradited to the US if you are found to have breached copyright laws. Still, many of the online facilities that are used for cyberlocking or torrenting emanate out of Europe.
All this will do is drive the entire downloading industry (and it is an industry) underground, to the point of using stealth and darknet related technologies. 256 bit encryption, disguised VPN-like trafficking across the Net, proxy IP addresses and many other tricks of the trade.
Over the last few days, what these events have done is to turn many regularly sourced sites upside down in panic. Some opting to remove their presence off the Net completely for fear of being targeted. So in a way, the Authorities have begun a dominoe effect by knocking over Kim Dotcom's empire and snowballing to all the others around him.
However, I doubt this will stop Hollywood Inc's Minions from going after others, because at the end of the day, what's at stake for them is simple, and they only want one thing: YOUR MONEY!!!
|November 2011 Blog
Well, it's time to write a blog entry. This will be the last before Christmas I suspect. I'll take time out to write about a few things that have cropped up over the last few days and weeks. Some of you have mentioned things in the Shoutbox that need expanding upon I reckon, so I'll do that here.|
First, let me start by saying how absolutely surprised I am as to the quality of releases during 2011. At the start of the year I would have put 100/1 odds that 2011 would be even close to the last great year - which was 2008. There have been some awesome releases of late. I won't go into too much detail, that can wait until the Best Of 2011 Writers wrap-up's start appearing in January or February 2012. For me, I can tell you now that acts such as Presto Ballet, The Magnificent, Toby Hitchcock and Pagans Mind will be right up there..
The reissue scene has also been a fantastic surprise. Glad to see Wounded Bird getting the RIGGS album out onto CD, very happy. So too all the goodies from Rock Candy, with more in the pipeline, re: Angel and Roadmaster. Looking forward to that.
Good also to see the magazine 'Classic Rock presents AOR..' doing very well, now venturing on to Issue 5. I can't help think this is like the AOR section of the old Sounds Magazine getting a second life. If any of you were around during the 1978 to 1985 timeframe, and were regular readers of Sounds (back then, in competition with New Musical Express and Melody Maker), then you'll recognise many of the names once popular making a return in the 21st century. Geoff Barton, Xavier Russell, and of course our regular Reyno-Roxx (Dave Reynolds) who held the AOR fort for awhile at Kerrang during that mag's decline into grunge purgatory. I'll happily support the magazine despite my initial distrust and 360 degree turnaround by some of it's management toward our favourite sub-genre.
Most of you know that GLORY-DAZE is not a fulltime site. The financial and marketing model of today's music industry does not make a fulltime situation viable. I'll give my hat off to a guy like Andrew McNeice for trying to make a full-time go of it with melodicock.com but quite clearly, the numbers do not stack up. I've had the odd email or two with Andrew, and he more or less agrees that tough times lie ahead in our 'genre of the woods'! I knew this some years ago, and the diminishing melodic rock scene worldwide goes some way to proving that theory correct. I earn much more lucrative coin working in the Australian Resources industry, enough to know that GLORY-DAZE can survive quite happily into the future on a part-time basis, without being answerable to anyone but you guys.. the regulars.
Onto another subject dear to mine.. and that is 'intolerance'. No, I'm not talking about how many jugs of milk you drink, which leads to excessive lactose intolerance and an all day bout of farting. No, I'm talking about how many out there can not control their mouths or virtual pens and have to get in the last word on a particular subject. I partake in many discussion forums (not all of them music I might add), and I can tell quite easily which Forums and Boards to avoid if I want to make it out alive. One of those is the melodicrock.com noticeboard. The recent Mecca shout-down on that board was an absolute disgrace. The two major instigators of idiocy (namely Coco and Rocknut) are a discredit to that site. In a recent email to Andrew McNeice, I suggested to him that: 1) he needs to move to an integrated site so he can mange his users more effectively, and 2) if it were me, I would've given those two idiots the boot many years ago. They hold back many other creditable and constructive people from contributing to that site. If it were a business, and those two were preventing other people from joining because of their incessant behaviour, then I would have no hesitation giving Coco and Rocknut the flick. As for the new Mecca release, I'm sure it's a good album, but it will not get a review at GLORY-DAZE due to some past distasteful incidents concerning Joe Vana. I will not elaborate so please don't ask.
Returning to 2011 releases.. Look, there have been so many albums of late, that it's hard to keep up. In some ways, it's worse than what it was back in the old days because so many albums took ages to land on your doorstep, now, you get given links to new albums (for review purposes), sometimes 10-20 new albums a month.. or more! Try as I might, I just don't have the time, so as some of you have mentioned on the Shoutbox, we might have to be a bit more discerning about what albums to review. Or, to perhaps share it around some of the regular readers, who might want to see how they fare as a reviewer.. lol! If you are interested in writing the odd album, then let us know.
I still believe our core mission is to cover off the treasured table lands of 1970 through to 1990. Anything beyond those years is a bonus, but for me personally, I found the whole 90's decade a bit of a disaster really. Sure, some great albums came out, but they were far and few between.
Another subject dear to my heart is what's happening around the world in terms of exo and geo-politics. Right now, we are living in the most exciting time of the planets history. So many monumental things are going on, and the things that have happened in 2011 beggars belief. The events of the Arabic Spring, which has seen Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, and as of today, Yemen, all seen their leaders and corrupt Governments been given the axe. Syria too is next cab on the rank, though the supposed Western intrusion into that country brings back reminders of the Iraq/WMD lie. Then of course there is the Euro debacle. A German centric Euro is not the way of the future, nor are Banker led incursions into Italy and Greece, both new leaders having sticky fingers into the cabal of the European Commission. Somehow, I think the Euro is a dead duck. Everyone wants to borrow more money, but because the Fiat currency is no longer available (you can't keep an illegal printing press running where there is no collateral behind the currency) there is not so much money to go around. Today, Germany wanted to borrow 6 billion Euro, but were knocked back by the ECB to a tune of 3.6 billion Euro. Even the once mighty German economy is running out of breath, and staggering under its collective responsibility. The Germans know how much they have to lose if the Euro currency dies a death.
And what about the circus that was the Republican Leaders Debate. They all looked like they were participating in a Police Lineup, except for Minnesota's Michelle Bachmann who looked way out of place next to some of those jackals (excluding Ron Paul). If that was any indication of a potential President for the USA, then one can only say, 'god help America'. What a bunch of losers! And what's with picking on Pakistan, the impression given they wanted to give the Muslim State a Christmas gift of nukes! Perhaps they needed to get the Super Committee sorted out first. But it's a bit difficult when you have two diametrically opposed philosophies sitting around the table. The Democrats want to share the budget burden of 1.2 trillion dollars right across the nation. The Republicans however don't want any part of sharing the burden, instead wanting the vast majority of poor-to-middle income Americans to pick up the tab at the expense of the rich and wealthy, who do not want to contribute to the burden at all. The irony is, the US national debt of some 15 trillion dollars was to some extent, created by the very few, in terms of defence commitments and the sheer greed perpetuated on Wall Street, which now sees the OWS (Occupy Wall Street) movement spread right out across the USA and to other nations abroad. It's time that the economy as we know it, should be shot in the head with a silver bullet so that we can start all over again from scratch. Enough of the bullshit.
Talking of bullshit, there's been a non-stop stream of it so far in Australia this week. Firstly, Sydney based DJ and shock jock Kyle Sandilands (a recent but former Australian judge on X Factor) has been given a hard time over his 'you're nothing but a fat slag' rant on radio. So much so, that all the corporate sponsors are deserting him like lifeboats on the Titanic. His apparent spat, was in response to a TV show commentator who gave his new show a bad rap. Sandilands is a known arsehole anyway who can't take criticism. At last report, $8 million worth of sponsors have left the show.
PM Julia Gillard is also having a rough week. After last weeks cozy-up to US President Obama down-under, she's under pressure from conservatives who belittle her attempt at easing up on gay marriage, as well as getting heat from Indonesia over the Bali-boy drug scandal, and now the U.S military taking up residence in the Northern Territory, much to the annoyance of Iron Ore business partner China. And now the Western Australian DEC (Environment and Conservation) Department, are in the firing line for allegedly but accidently, starting a massive bushfire in the Margaret River region yesterday, which has seen close on 30 homes destroyed, and vast tracks of land burnt to a cinder. We're only days into the W.A bushfire season and the whole state is like a tinderbox, with bushfires in the north (Carnavon and Geraldton), all the way to the south (Nannup, Margaret River, Gnarabup and Denmark). I'm not in safety where I live either. Surrounded by bush, and only earlier this year, we had a major bushfire just 30km south of where I live. Not good.
Well, I'm getting riled up as I write this, so perhaps it's time to sign off.. you never know, I might get one last blog in before Christmas, as I'm flying back home to New Zealand for the Christmas/New Year break, free from poisonous spiders, snakes, sharks and 40 degree heat. Yay!
Just recently, I have observed a few people out there creating compilations of songs and then releasing them on blog sites. They package them up with artwork and notes, and some have even given themselves catalogue numbers! Say what?|
I find this to be a very cheeky thing to do, considering the music is not theirs in the first place, the compilations are not authorised, and god forbid if they are selling these dubious collections for money as that it is an obvious no-no and is an offence under law (doesn't matter where you are living).
You can find some of these compilations on the Net, where people under the names of Deemon and Camelblue and a few others are packaging these up for distribution.
How would you like it if your precious work was being given away by third parties for nothing? Perhaps some computer hacker should go in and replicate their Blog Sites and put it up on the Net, or better yet, shut it down.
Some of you consider these people to be some sort of online hero, but in reality, they nothing more than pilferers who do nothing but leach off the Net.
There, I've had my rant for the week.
|What is it with Facebook?
I have a love/hate affair with social media sites. Remember the days when MySpace was the 'it' place to hang out online? Now look at it in 2011. It looks like a dog, and numbers are leaving in droves. MySpace was always a terribly slow site to navigate, and the thing that always amused me was the number of other MySpace users who tagged you as a friend, even if you didn't really know them. To an extent, this has continued on in Facebook, and if I may so, has gotten worse.|
Some of you will know I have entered and exited Facebook as a member on several occasions. There are times when I can't be half arsed reading about people's minutiae detail of their micro-cosmed lives. I mean: 'who really cares'? There are more important things in life than seeing a plethora of You Tube videos come across my computer. Perhaps I need to read the fine print of Facebook's access controls a little more. I've mainly used Facebook for music purposes, but I think once again I may disappear off the map as there are things in my life other than music which interest me a lot more.
I know you all use Facebook for varying reasons - least being Farmville. Please, I hope none of you are playing Farmville, for your sake, ask for your wasted time back.. lol
I find that the more the world becomes technocratic, the less I want to be a part of it. Call me a luddite, but sometimes reverting back to a simpler existence means that there is less to worry about it.
|What a weird time to be alive..
2011 has witnessed a crazy start to the year. Some of us live in Australia, and it's hard to know whether we are blessed or cursed. Out East, of course we all saw what happened to Queensland. Lesser known globally were the floods that also hit NSW, northwestern Victoria, and Tasmania too! |
And then out West where I live, we've had a very bad run of bush fires. One just close to where I live (Lake Clifton) caused untold damage, then there were a spate of 4 bushfires in outer Perth which did even more damage. You really do take your life into your own hands when you buy a property adjacent to the bush here in Australia.
Then of course we had the Blizzard from Hell causing all sorts of havoc along the eastern seaboard of the USA. Someone said to me that it could be the beginning of a new ice age. Well, the tell tale sign is if the Gulf Stream gives up the ghost, then the situation could be exacerbated. If you read all the Conspiracy Theory websites out there, they will tell you we only have weeks to go.. Yeah right, not before the release of the next Journey album please!! lol!
And what's with all these political upheavals in the Middle East? Is a trend being set for all the Banana Republics around the globe to be ruled by the Monkeys? It reads like a who's who of despots:
Tunisia, Egypt, Syria, Zimbabwe, Yemen, Somalia, and goodness knows where else..
I think it's a good idea to find solace in your favorite website - so that distraction from all the nonsense of the world is diverted. You could do no worse than GLORY-DAZE... LOL!
|Year end wrap
I sit here pondering on New Years Eve 2010, thinking about the year nearly departed, and the year about to arrive. It has certainly been a year full of surprises, upsets, quirks and quarks, and somehow the meaningless rather than the meaningful makes it into the public eye (if you think this is squarely aimed at Justin Bieber, then you'd be right).
Musically, in our favorite sub-genres of music, I would have to say that 2010 has not been a great year for new music. On the reissue front though, there have been some fantastic releases. Kudos to Rock Candy for their continued good efforts, and also Retrospect for delivering the awesome Kristina Nichols and The Storm and right on the 11th hour of 2010 - the long overdue MPG album, with 4 bonus tracks to boot. Hopefully 2011 will change the trend and deliver a great years worth of music, not seen since the heady days of 2008!
On the technology front, we saw the rise of Android devices, the iPad, 2TB and 4TB storage drives, and the continuing upward trend of Linux as a viable (and free) operating system. It looks as if the days of the Operating System Wars are now over, as people focus on the second rung down: which is the Browser. But 2011 should see new battle fronts appear, as we drop down another rung on the ladder to a third level ('Inception' anyone?) where the war will be waged in theaters such as Facebook, Twitter and GoogleSearch. The war really is just a war for your mind and attention. If you can see beyond the bullshit and brimstone, you'll be fine in 2011.
Another new trend for 2011 could be the emergence of HTML5 as the web developers platform of choice. Tools for HTML5 are being readied, as soon as the software language has passed all the critical peer review tests. This might be a few months away yet, but expect to hear more about it. I doubt GDAZE will move to HTML5 immediately, as I prefer to see all the bugs ironed out during the initial usage phase, which is typically the first 6 months of its life.
Here in Australia, we have this nationwide policy (and Election gimmick) called the NBN.. a.k.a the National Broadband Network. The current Government is throwing billions of dollars to upgrade Australia's national internet coverage. I have to say, coverage is actually quite good for 98% of the country, and in the Metro areas of each state, the speeds are beyond average. I mean, we're not talking South Korea here, which has an average bandwidth speed between 8 and 15mbps, but still it's very good. Regional areas are usually the ones that are caught out, and if you live in a community with less than a 1000 people, then it's unlikely that Broadband provisioning will be made available to you. I suspect that is pretty much the case with other Western World nations too. Unfortunately, the Government has a rather paranoid Minister of Communications (Stephen Conroy) who, if he had his own way, would firewall the entire Australian domain space, and cherry pick those overseas sites that Australian citizens could access. It's one step away from the situation that China sees itself in, and that is bad.
Recently in Australia, we have seen the Oprah phenomenon pass through just prior to Christmas. Despite the shlock value, it was great seeing her down under, and for her to get a first hand appreciation of life on the Red Continent, and not just hearing it second hand from her buddy Russell 'Rusty' Crowe.
On a sadder note, the Australian cricket team have lost their aura of invincibility (actually they lost their mojo some time ago), with England having retained The Ashes. For me, the star of the show has been bowler Chris Tremlett, who really should be playing pro Basketball because he's just so tall! Despite his detractors, it would be good if Ricky Ponting were allowed to continue playing test cricket, if only to get the opportunity to pass 40 test centuries and perhaps overtake Sunil Gavaskar's position as 2nd highest century maker (Ponting is currently third on 39, Sachin Tendulkar tops the list at 50). I don't think the current array of Australian cricketers are mature enough to go it alone without Ponting just yet, perhaps in another year or so, but right now, Australia are incredibly exposed at the moment.
Another man in the sporting highlight is the NFL's best running Quarterback Michael Vick, currently in the employ of the Philadelphia Eagles after a couple of years in prison for running a dog-fighting racket. We are getting close to play-offs stage, so it will be interesting to see who makes it the Superbowl Sunday. Despite what you think of Vick, he has shown some remarkable ability, the Eagles recent win over the New York Giants where Philly were down 20+ points with 7 minutes to go shows what a team can do when they have someone with that 'X' factor on their books. Should be a good couple of weeks regardless of the wintry weather.
To all my friends up in the NH, I feel for your plight as Blizzards continue to dominate your weather map. Here in Western Australia, feel for us poor souls too, as we are about to head into a 5 day continuance of 40+ degree temperatures. The only dangers being:
1) how hot the sand will be as I struggle to get to the waters edge down at the beach?
2) will the fire-bugs come out of the wood work, and cause untold damage due to arson?
3) how high will my power bill be as my Air Conditioner is on just about all the time?
4) will I be able to sleep at night?
5) how much insect repellent do I have to use to keep the moisture seeking bush flies off my person?
That said, there is a tropical cyclone further up the State, which could make its way south (not as far south as Perth though), so at least we have dry ground, unlike our other Australian brethren over in Queensland which is practically under water!
OK, time to catch up on some music articles. enough pondering for the moment.
|The case of: RIAA vs Thomas-Rasset
There is something to be said about the ethics of the RIAA. For those of you who don't know who this godawful and heinous group are: they are the Recording Industry Association of America. They supposedly represent the interests of recording artists in the main, but truth be known, they are the 'hatchet man' for the world's largest music labels.|
This week's drawn out hearings regarding single mother of four - Jammie Thomas-Rasset, who a few years ago downloaded 24 songs off the Kazaa network, speaks volumes for the reputation of the RIAA, and the overwhelming silliness of their court case against Ms Thomas-Rasset, who has been ordered by a jury to pay a fine of $1.5 million for the privilege.
It's quite clear to all and sundry (with the exception of the RIAA who obviously have no ears and morals when it comes to this case.. makes you wonder why they are in the music business at all), that Ms Thomas-Rasset is a pawn in this matter, and is being used (yes, used and abused by the RIAA) as the public scrutiny scapegoat in the RIAA's ongoing fight with pirates and downloaders.
They are attempting to use this case as a means to scare off other downloaders with the threat of civil court action. Let's get back to case in question.. $1.5 million for 24 songs works out at about $62,000 a song. No one in their right mind would put a value like that on a song.. not even the original artist, who it would seem, gets nothing out of the proceeds of the court case, should Ms Thomas-Rasset be in a position to pay it back (she says she isn't.. not surprisingly).
We are talking about a classic case of using a anvil to stamp on an ant. Considering the RIAA doesn't know any better, we can expect their dubious behaviour to continue, until such time as they realise they are confronting a tsunami like wave of confrontation from consumers, and let's face it, we now have a generation of kids who know nothing else but downloading music and film off the Internet for free. When it gets to the 100th monkey syndrome, then the RIAA war becomes a war that cannot be won.
Also, there are many artists out there who are using viral marketing techniques to get their music across to the general internet population. This flies in the face of RIAA policy, who deem it worse than having music/film pirated. But because many of these artists are not represented by the RIAA, the RIAA can't do anything about it. Tough titties..
Say what you like about the Thomas-Rasset case, but to me, it's simply a bullshit case with a flimsy background and flaky outcomes. To me, the RIAA have about as much goodwill going as companies like Monsanto, Exxon and BP.
|New Glossary & Dictionary tool
Today we have bolted on a new Glossary & Dictionary tool. This is available from the left-side navigation menu.|
Many of you are disciples of the International Encyclopedia of Hard Rock and Heavy Metal. We have used it ourselves over the course of this website's 11 year history, and we think it's a great way to replicate the many entries in that publication, but instead we'll put our spin on it, and build an Artist/Act database using the same quirky humour and writing style used before by Messrs Jasper and Oliver.
Once you start seeing the entries build up you'll understand how it will come together.
Our aim is to build a huge profile of Acts from the past, that may not necessarily have released an album as such, but may have released demos, or played on the local scene. We can see that the G&D tool (that's glossary and dictionary, not glory daze!!) could contain thousands of entries. That's the aim anyway.
Feel free to generate feedback.
GD Writers: you all have admin access to this via the dropdown Infusion panel (right-side user profile menu). When creating entries, set the status to 'Approved' rather than 'submitted'.
|Changing Times Ahead
As much as it pains me to say it, 2010 will be the last year in which this website will undertake reviews of current albums. There seems to be no point in reviewing current product, as it appears to hit download and blog sites days - even weeks before official release, rendering it useless for review sites to make a judgement on it prior to release.|
Part of the reason for a site like this back in the early (pre blog) days was to give bands an opportunity to be written about before actual release dates. This seems to be no longer the case.
In the event, GLORYDAZE will revert to music, articles and reviews of yesteryear albums, in keeping with its website title.
I will keep current arrangement in place until the end of the calendar year. However, we will not be seeking submissions of NEW material into 2011.
George and the GDAZE Team
|Volcanoes, Gigs, Playing Live, the Industry (20 April 2010)
Well it's been a long time since I've last written a piece for our news and blog section. I am inspired by a number of things that are going on around the planet at the moment, and strangely enough these integrate with the melodic rock scene in some strange and distorted way. |
Firstly, let's look at the impact of the two volcanoes that are causing havoc way up there in Iceland. The airline schedules have been blown out of kilter. It is a bit of a worry considering we are about to head into the concert/festival season throughout Europe, notwithstanding North America. Planes and people are unable to travel and when they do there will be an almighty backlog to get through. You can bet your bottom dollar that liability issues and insurance companies will call on that rarely used cop-out called 'Force Majeure' to extricate themselves from blame and insurance payout. Here's hoping that European travellers to MRF2 in Chicago in the next two weeks are not affected in any great way.
Which leads me on to my second issue. And that is, bands in the modern rock genre being able to play live, notwithstanding being unable to travel because of volcanoes. I have seen a whole lot of dialogue related to the viability of the melodic rock industry, relating to the sale of CDs, piracy, illegal downloads, and how can bands and artists make any money under this type of regime. Nowadays we are seeing limited issues of CDs (some original pressings/runs are now down to 1000 or less) simply because some people aren't buying and because downloads of such material are readily available online -- unfortunately. It's a dog eat dog world out there. If downloaders are using excuses such as saving money and ready availability (convenience), in all likelihood they won't bother to step outside their front door to go and watch a band play live. It's a vicious circle for many bands/acts, you wonder why they bother? So when people ask the question 'why don't these bands play live?' Well, you have your answer. Bands are not making any money, therefore, there is not enough dollars in the kitty to allow for live performances. I feel the situation is getting worse year by year -- something is going to have to give. If you think the melodic rock genre is marginalised now, my prediction is that it will narrow even further into the future.
Another inspiration for writing this blog came after I watched the movie 'The Story of Anvil'. I'm sure many of you have already seen it, and with the real-life documentary story that was told by Steve Kudrow and Robb Reiner, many of the problems that Anvil faced during the 80s, 90s and into the current day can be retold 1000 times over with other bands. There was a scene towards the end of the movie where they were invited to play live in Japan, only to be told that they had an 11:30am kickoff as the first band on stage. The band were worried that no one would turn up that early to watch them play. Steve was freaking out, after coming all the way from Canada it could have been a huge letdown. To their horror and pleasant surprise, the hall was sold out and full when they went on stage! It was a huge success for them. What I took from that movie was that adversity can always be overridden with tenacity and courage. For hard rock bands to survive into the future, they need look no further than this movie for inspiration.
The last part of this blog will touch on what the authorities are trying to do to stamp out illegal downloading. It seems to me that the only people who are jumping up and down are the record companies. Internet providers, consumer protection groups and to a lesser extent governments, don't seem to be as vociferous as record companies. I see this week that the RIAA are looking at things such as Internet filters, IP tracking, preventative search filtering, restricting torrent functionality and analysis of download/blog sites where legal proceedings may take place. Already we have seen China put up an Internet filter nationwide, Australia is proposing something similar, though there is some expectation that Australian citizens may jump up and down about this. Other countries are following this with interest. I am pretty certain that within a few years illegal downloads will be stopped in its tracks due to uncrackable technology that will be deployed, in conjunction with hardware manufacturers and all record companies. Count on it! Call it speculation, guessing, or hedging one's bets. To record companies this would be the holy grail. To be fair, I don't really give much consideration to larger record companies, I am more interested in protecting the rights of independent artists who go it alone. For them to release their hard earned material and to see it being downloaded with the same voracious appetite as mainstream bands on larger labels, this to me is a huge disparity. Even if independent artists had access to the same uncrackable technology, at least they would be protecting their copyright. I am all for bands and artists to protect their music, I hope a solution can be found very soon.
|The News Section
Well, after analysing the News Section on this site, I found it was a bit of work trying to keep it up to date.|
I find it much easier to dispense 'sometimes organised' and 'sometimes random' thoughts on the fly, and that is where a tool like Twitter comes in real handy. Like txting on a mobile phone, you are constrained to using a set number of characters (140), so it makes it easy to update the Twitter account, knowing it is going directly to the frontpage of the GDAZE Site.
All of the old news items are still there, and if there is anything majorly important that needs to go there, we will still do so, just click on NEWS from the top menu.
|The return of Audio
For a few years we had audio attached to some of our reviews. It was a great feature as we were able to provide a playlist of a few songs here and there, so people could take a listen.
Unfortunately, my Web Host asked that I remove them due to: performance issues with the site, and 2ndly, they weren't supposed to be there. They did say however that I could link to other sites where audio and video were hosted (a la You Tube) because by doing this, it would not impact on the performance of GDAZE nor the webhost itself - which is only fair.
Linking to You Tube is great, but it does not give me the flexibility to post material that I want up online. So, what I have done is built my own Audio/Streaming Server using Linux Ubuntu Server 9.10, which enables me to load up the server with all the music and video I want, and then to stream them online using a Port Forwarding facility.
There are heaps of streaming applications out there, but I am quite fond of the PHP/Flash application we used previously called FLAM PLAYER, which i am used to working with, but I need to test it behind a Firewall and Router configuration first.
So, be aware that audio is returning, and then video too, which will essentially be Flash video (FLV files), because these are smaller and more compressed than MPEG files. You Tube uses FLV files mostly, so it will be similar.
OK, I'll keep you posted as to progress.
|What's Going On? (17 Nov 2009)
A well overdue blog update is needed. Things are ramping up toward Christmas, inevitably things are going by at a rapid rate of knots.|
So what's been happening down under? It's a busy old time music wise, with lots of acts coming and going, even here in Western Australia. No doubt many of you would have heard about the lip synching debacle that Britney Spears put on two weekends ago. For her first concert of her current tour in Australia, it really was a shambles. Quite how the American audiences tolerated her shows during the Northern Hemisphere summer.. well, she must've been doing something right, either that or the audience was completely dumbed down to it all. Not so discerning Aussie patrons. Put it this way, if Pink, Beyonce and Lady Gaga can all sing and do their dance moves at the same time, then so too can Britney. It's not as if she's inexperienced at this sort of thing. Anyway.. who really cares right? lol!
There are heaps more acts coming to town. Seal is here this weekend, bringing his jazz/soul revue. I'm not sure it's going to be in the style of his 1991 debut album, as I understand there will be a small orchestra involved. I wonder if patrons will feel equally annoyed? Perth also has its biggest horse raceday of the year this Saturday (apart from New Years Day when the Perth Cup is on) with the 1 million dollar Railway Stakes up for grabs, and Jimmy Barnes and his band will be the main musical attraction. I hope Jimmy and the boys aren't subject to searing 30 degree heat during the middle of the day! I was at the races on New Years Day this year, and it was hot! Believe me, even the flies can't stand the heat of the day. Welsh rockers Budgie are here this weekend too, playing Perth and Fremantle, so it will be a busy
As we near the end of 2009, there are a number of strong releases from Frontiers. I take my hat off to these guys. Their product is consistently good now, apart from one or two misses, but by and large the AOR community should be pleased that their sub-genre is being looked after. New releases from Winger, Blanc Faces, Mastedon and the new supergroup W.E.T are all worthy of inclusion in your CD collection. There are a handful of releases coming through for December, so hold off compiling your 'Best Of 2009' and 'Best Of 2000-2009 Decade' lists just yet.
Lee Aspin, one of our writing team from a few years ago has written in to advise his new reviews blog called http://www.realgo...ogspot.com Real Gone Reviews. Lee will be using some of his previously submitted material review here at GLORY-DAZE on his blog, in conjunction with many of his other reviews of albums which weren't a good fit for this site. A very entertaining reviewer/writer, his style continues on thanks to the efforts of Chris Harper (a.k.a englandashes).
Talking of Lee's, I wonder where our South African friend Lee Bradfield has disappeared to? Anyone with any information as to the whereabouts of Mr Bradfield, please let us know. He is a much missed writing colleague who needs to get his A into G once more!
Yes, it's getting to that time of year (and decade) when we can gather our thoughts and summarise the first decade of the 21st century in terms of our favorite sub-genre's of AOR, melodic hard rock, power-pop, progressive, and of course all the metal genre's. If we recall, the first years (2000-2001) was racked with a load of modern rock/nu-breed styled releases which was a continuation of what fell out of the record label industry between 1996 and 1999. AOR was still around, but looking back, the quality of releases wasn't particularly strong. 2002 was a much better year, it was the year that many reissues started to come to the fore, which continues on to this day with much better quality. I think 2002 along with 2008 were two of the better years in melodic rock and metal. 2009 is starting to accelerate along too, after a not so convincing start to the year. Come January 2010, we will publish our Best Of Lists.. no doubt it will be a talking point among many.
Great to see Maryland favorites Face Dancer back on a roll again. The band have reactivated themselves and can be viewed over at their latest website http://www.faceda...ficial.com. FD have a December show coming up playing alongside another Maryland institution: Kix. If you hook up as a member of the FD Official website, you will be able to download the 'Midnite Raid' and 'Face Dancer Live' albums (both reviewed here at GD). Go to it!
That's all for today.. more soon..
|Todaze Snippets (4 Sept 2009)
Here's a collection of news briefs from around the Internet.|
The Murder Of My Sweet
Coming soon of Frontiers is Swedish combo The Murder Of My Sweet. Featuring female lead singer Angelica Rylin, the five piece band also features Johan Niemann and Daniel Flores from Minds Eye and former Platitude keyboardist Andreas Lindahl. All of the band had participated just recently on the new Crash The System CD 'The Crowning'. It seems the band name was nicked from former Billy Idol guitarist's Mark Younger-Smith's band Murder My Sweet.
I recently read on melodic.net that the band were the tenth most popular Swedish band on MySpace. Not sure how they came to that conclusion.. but anyway.. From my initial hearing of the band on their MySpace page, it seems there is a Nightwish type thing happening. No doubt we'll see the PR material from Frontiers shortly.
Site links: http://www.myspac...rofmysweet
Fab Box video
Recently signed to Avenue Of Allies, and previously reviewed here, Italian combo Fab Box have just released their video of the track 'Always'. The track also featured on Danny Vaughn's 'From The Inside' album from last year. Check out the video link below..
AOR-FM Records going into hibernation
Bruce from AOR-FM Records advises us that his label is going into recession (along with the economy it would seem), and will not be releasing any more new reissue CD's in the near future.
This from Rikk Currence of the band JoyFocus, who we reviewed a few months back.
A month ago, well known movie director John Hughes ('Breakfast Club', 'Ferris Buellers Day Off', 'Pretty In Pink', 'Home Alone' etc) died of a heart attack while out taking a morning stroll while on a trip to Manhattan, NY.
Rikk says.. 'A few years ago, JoyFocus was asked to participate in a documentary film titled 'Don't You Forget About Me - The Movie'. The producers contacted us because they had heard a song we had written called 'Mr. Hughes Come Home', which eventually ended up on our EP 'Ultra Catch Atomic Pop Interlude'.
Long story short, we were cut from the film once it started to gain momentum by the studio that got involved - it's a long very stereotypical scenario. We were hoping you might be able to get the word out about our song and encourage people to check it out. It's been a very popular song for us since it's release in 2007 and with Mr. Hughes' passing seems more appropriate than ever.'
The song - 'Mr. Hughes Come Home' - check it out at: http://www.joyfoc....
Rikk from JoyFocus
Some of you may have read about the comeback of the band 101 South featuring former Fortune and Harlan Cage keyboardist Roger Scott Craig. They have a new website up, plus a great new album called 'No U Turn', which can only be acquired online from their website. Roger has long been an opponent of the free downloads movement, and has racked up some interesting facts about how the whole online downloading thing is hurting the industry. Taking control of his own material/content, means that 'No U Turn' will not be sold via any other distribution method, meaning that no one else is involved as a third party and indirectly taking a cut of the profits.
I think this is the way of the future, so long as the marketing is done properly online. As an ironic twist, it seems there are many downloaders asking where they can obtain a 'free' copy of the CD. (refer zona-musical.com, hardrockaorheaven.blogspot.com). Now isn't that a bit rich? I hope to have a chat with Roger about 101 South, and the new MTUNZ concept he is promoting. Stay tuned.
Wings Of Light
As part of my ongoing research into obscure bands from the past, I've dug one up from the late 70's. The band are called Wings Of Light, and were a Christian outfit with a heap of band members. There's been a bit of interest in their very good 1985 album 'Alien', which is very much excellent AOR in the vein of Toto and Neilsen/Pearson. There's very little info I've found on the band initially, but after sending Google into spazz mode with a bit of intuitive detective work, I managed to do some deep diving to uncover some more interesting facts about the band.
As far as I can tell, the band released three albums:
Wings Of Light - s/t (1979, Daystar Records, private recording)
Wings Of Light - In A Different Light (1982, Christian Artists Records)
Wings Of Light - Alien (1985, Emerald Records USA, Dayspring (UK)
The first two albums appear to be very gospel oriented 'jesus rock', with loads of schmaltzy horns and rhodes keyboard work a la Herb Alpert. It was typical of the era, WOL undertaking a lot of evangelical work, not unlike Matthew Ward and 2nd Chapter Of Acts. There are a couple of sound files that can be heard on the 'http://souldennis.blogspot.com' site (soul - as in the music genre), so you can tell it ain't quite AOR.
Band members in Wings Of Light varied over the years, but they included: John Barbour, Fred Heumann, Keith Boll, La Roy Cadiz, Ed Deckard, Steve Gabrielse, Patti Grover, Leann Hendrickson, Glen Holmen, Dave Mullins, Mike Ross, Larry Tardy and Jeff Taylor. Crikey, any larger and we'd be calling this lot the Mike Curb Congregation!
Not exactly sure of the lineup by the time 1985's 'Alien' turned up, though the name David Jackson has been linked to the band as their keyboardist. Honestly, it's like unravelling a long piece of string. Anyone out there who was active with the band or active in the CCM/Jesus movement, please drop me a line (refer the Contact Us page).
|It's been an interesting ol' time Down Under.. music wise..
Australia has a culture all of its own, identifiable from afar, from its sporting heritage, tourist locations, world famous landmarks, and of course its music.|
Just last week, we had the annual ARIA Awards, with a couple of notable identities added to the ARIA Hall Of Fame. This years two acts that resonate more with GDAZE readers include: John Paul Young ('Love Is In The Air' ) and pop/rock band Mental As Anything, who had a couple of hits including 'Live It Up' and 'If You Leave Me (Can I Come Too)'. The others were Kev Carmody, Little Pattie and The Dingoes - neither of whom I have heard.
Interestingly, the ARIA HOF in past years includes quite a number of acts featured here. Let's take a look:
Sherbet, AC/DC, Cold Chisel, John Farnham, The Angels, Rose Tattoo, Bee Gees, Little River Band, Dragon, Midnight Oil, Icehouse, INXS, Men At Work, Jimmy Barnes and the late Billy Thorpe.
Some good names there for sure.
Also starting up in the last few weeks was Australian Idol. The lovely Delta Goodrem is one of the judges. Interesting to see her name in the Aussie tabloid press, reputedly under some relationship stress with fiance/partner Brian McFadden (formerly of Westlife).
Heading down under very shortly are THE SWEET, doing a number of gigs around the continent during November. Also travelling around at the same time are Welsh legends BUDGIE, with new guitarist Craig Goldy (ex Dio, Giuffria blah blah), They are playing two shows out in West Australia, one in Perth and one in Fremantle. Might just get along to one of those shows!
Also noticeable to see Aussie's top rock distributor RiotOz heading into the record label market. They are attempting to rev up the Aussie market with a selection of good hard rock/metal releases - in much the same way as various labels attempt to do in Europe (Frontiers, Nuclear Blast, Massacre etc). Look to see some notable names on their label shortly.
On ABC telly last week, there was a documentary on Gary 'Angry' Anderson - of Rose Tattoo fame. Many of you living outside of Australia won't be aware that Gary has been a supporter of children's charities for many years, mainly to do with victims of child violence and sexual abuse. He has been involved as far back as the early 80's, and was at one point, a TV commentator/guest working with the legendary Ray Martin on Australian television. Australia has one of the highest rates of men's prostrate cancer, so it was great to see Angry in a TV ad about prostrate cancer, following the 2006 death of Rose Tattoo guitarist Pete Wells to the disease..
More tales from down under to follow..
|20 Greatest Anthems
Down here in Australia, there is a show on regularly called '20 to 1' - countdown of the 20 greatest ... fill in the spaces ..|
Well last night, it was 20 Greatest Anthems.. and we're talking about anthems of the hard rock variety.
For those who live in Aussie, you'll know that the very queer and very strange Bert Newton hosts the show, and of the 20 songs listed, most are a 'hands fit glove' selection for this website.
As I was watching it, I got 19 of the 20 songs.. I think it was the 19th one that I missed.. anyway.. we've got:
Twisted Sister - We're Not Gonna Take It
Boston - More Than A Feeling
Bon Jovi - You Give Love A Bad Name
Cheap Trick - The Flame
Shannon Noll - What About Me (Aussie Idol runner up, this is The Moving Pictures track)
REO Speedwagon - Keep On Lovin' You
Pat Benatar - Love Is A Battlefield
Joan Jett - I Love Rock N Roll
Foreigner - I Wanna Know What Love Is
The Kinks - Lola
Whitesnake - Is This Love
Heart - Alone
Deep Purple - Smoke On The Water
Bonnie Tyler - Total Eclipse Of The Heart
Jimmy Barnes - Working Class Man
Meatloaf - I'll Do Anything For You
Queen - We Will Rock You
Rolling Stones - Satisfaction
And the winner..
AC/DC - It's A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock N Roll)
Most of these selections were based on how popular each song was on the charts in Australia. For instance, 'Love Is A Battlefield' spent five weeks at #1, Heart's 'Alone' did similar business.
Interesting selections.. I though Europe's 'Final Countdown' might have been on the list, as well as John Farnham's 'Your The Voice'. Still a good selection of anthems! Led Zeppelin's 'Stairway To Heaven' is missing, as is Free's 'Alright Now', possibly 'The Who's 'My Generation' and Survivor's 80's anthem 'Eye Of The Tiger'.
Surely they've got contenders for a 20 Greatest Anthems Vol 2? hehe..
|Blog: Is the LP/Album format on the outer?
I was interested to read an alternative view about the concept of the 'album', from well known band Radiohead, and their lead singer Thom Yorke. It was reported earlier this week that the band will not release anymore albums, instead they will release single songs online. It appears that the rigours of recording an albums worth of material was having a detrimental impact on the band, with Yorke adding that none of the band members want to get involved with the creative hoo-ha of a long-play record again. |
Though this stance seems confined to the world of Radiohead, it could set the trend for the next generation of rockers to keep it short, simple and sweet - by providing less on quantity and more on quality - though the latter must be surely be subjective.
Let's flesh this out a little bit more, with a couple of observations about todays situation for the listening public as it stands in 2009..
* The 'Next Generation' are surrounded by iPod like devices, MP4 players, plus a whole raft of 21st century gizmos. This is the 'I want it now' generation, meeting the 'me' generation, colliding with the 'i expect to get it for free' generation. Today, this is all that Western World teenagers know. Everything on a platter, whether it's one song or one album..
* This generation also has an attention span erring somewhere between 5 seconds and 0.5 nano seconds. In other words, things in their world needs to attract their attention within a short space of time. Everything is going so fast for them that keeping up is a fulltime occupation.
* Technology is changing the landscape and soundscape at alarming rates. What is in vogue today will be outdated by the end of the week.. literally. So you can see how some monolithic record labels and hangers-on (i.e RIAA) appear much like dinosaurs running around on the set of The Jetsons! The same can be said for trendy technologies such as Facebook, Twitter, Flock, YouTube. These days it's not the record label that calls the shots, it's the e-communities and their legions of fans who do. Information and power in the future - will be dictated by these e-communities. Sheer weight of numbers can provide massive pulling power. The recent Walmart ploy by Journey, AC/DC, The Eagles and soon Foreigner - is a classic case of a large retail community being used to sell their wares. I wonder what the RIAA has to say about that? But you get my point...
Keeping that in mind, has the well worn but much loved concept of the 'Long Player', LP, album etc - become an antiquated trinket from our past that is well beyond its use-by date?
Just by perusing the many album reviews on this site, you can see quite clearly that most of the albums contain one or two good songs.. perhaps three of four at a pinch, with the remainder reserved for the filler list. This pattern has been recurring since the 60's when albums first started coming into fashion. Having learned the lessons of nearly 50 years of recordings, maybe it's about time that some trendsetters came along and reinvented the music industry - away from a model that has benefited record labels for years, and sucked the dollars out of consumers for what was mostly shoddy product - let's be honest.
* Perhaps it is time that artists/labels retrenched, and provided consumers with quality instead of quantity.
* Perhaps it is time that the EP makes a comeback, and gives listeners a tighter selection of songs, cherry-picked by the artist in question, but again I stress, quality is subjective.. 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder' as they say. One persons treasure is someone else's trash.
If the LP/album was to disappear as a format, then this site would probably be out of business. That's not a bad thing. Put it this way, a proliferation of EP's are far easier to review.
However, it would be a sad loss, as the LP/Album has driven entire generations and dominated pop culture for half a century or more. Albums have built legacies and empires. Just look at The Beatles, Michael Jackson, KISS, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and many more. Albums have also made many people millionaires. I doubt any shorter format of music will have the same impact. And while we're on that subject, just when was the last greatest rock album ever released? I don't think I can recall anything probably since 'Metallica's 'Black' album or perhaps GnR's 'Appetite For Destruction', and those were nearly 20 years ago!
Is there life in the 'album' yet? I think so. I'm certain that swords will be drawn and blood spilt by many in the existing recording industry to keep the format intact. However, remember what I said just before.. it's the consumer/e-community that holds the power now - not the recording industry.
|Blog: The Rise Of The Blogspot Phenomenon
The last year has seen the explosive growth and rise of the Blogspot world. The Blogspot community is mainly used for the upload of music, though there are other sites used for other content, but are less interesting. Whatever your principles, policy or beliefs around the upload/download of music from these sites, what is a fact is that these sites are proliferating at a great rate of knots. After observing such sites for the best part of a year, I have decided to summarise my thoughts about all of this.|
Initially, what started out as 'just a few sites', has ended up with (literally) thousands of blogspot sites. If you were to do a google search on a particular album (albeit something relatively easy to find), chances are, you'll find it on a blogspot site. The demographics of these sites, in relation to the sort of music that interests the GDAZE readership, are mainly generated in Europe (Spain, Portugal, Russia), and occasionally in South America (Brazil, Argentina). Very rarely do I come across blogspot sites out of the Western world countries such as Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand etc.. which in itself lends to some interesting demographic statistics and theories.
One of the biggest bug-bears I have with the blogspot community is the way that brand new albums make it up onto a download site even before it's been officially released. Last year we had the Marcello Vestry album uploaded before it's launch date, this year we have Steel Panther's CD out in the rest of the world, long before it's official release date in the USA (their home country by the way) in September 2009! What the hell are Island Records doing? Talk about leaving the gate open for the horse to bolt! To me, it's just more of the same shenanigans that record labels were up to back in the 70's and 80's. Certainly, some of the larger record labels are shooting themselves in the foot. The way that some labels get around it, is by limiting to a set number of pressings for the disc, so they can at least sell them all and recoup their costs before the downloading begins. This is a subject that I may discuss with various label heads (Sam @ Retrospect, Bruce @ AOR-FM, Stephen @ Eonian, Lasse @ Lion Music for instance), just to get their take on the situation, given the circumstances.
Bootlegs/Poor Quality CD Reissues
Some of our readers have raised good points about bootlegs and poor quality CD reissues. If a CD vendor is hawking off so called rarities as official CD's, but the resulting quality is nothing more than a scrubbed up vinyl recording, why would you waste precious dollars on them, when you could possibly pick these up as a download somewhere else? This was recently bought into question by the dubious record label Renaissance Records, who's owner John Marshall has repeatedly denied over the years that he is doing anything wrong. Well into 2009, his latest batch of CD's prove he is still not delivering on quality, so obviously John is not heeding his own advice. Renaissance aren't the only label at fault. Zoom Records, Krescendo Records, Escape Music (refer the 3 LP Tantrum CD) and MTM Music can all be accused of tossing out sub-standard fare over the years. And they wonder why people are downloading music off the Internet? Well, there's one of your reasons.
You really do have to dig your way through a pile of manure to find the diamonds and gems in our exclusive AOR/hard rock community. Many of the blogspot sites aren't particularly imaginative in their selection of uploads. If you are a hair metal fan from the 80's, chances are, you could live at the blogspot trough and dine forever! Less so for AOR fans. From what I've seen, there are a handful of sites that specialize by hard rock genre: whether it be 70's classic rock, christian rock, 70's prog, 80's hair metal, and/or todays crop of prog metal/HM releases. You'll see a select few, such as Robots For Ronnie, Alocacoc (which is pretty much defunct now), or CamelBlue's excellent resource, that focus on AOR, but they are the minority not majority. At GLORY-DAZE, registered members have access to our Download Links sub-forum, where we have added a few rarities for download. You have to be a registered member to view and download these though.. I'm not making them publicly available like blogspot sites. If you are serious about AOR, then you know what to do.. sign on and register.
There are a great many upload services on the Net, we've all heard of them by now.. Rapidshare, Megaupload, easyShare, Badongo etc etc. Many of the links you see have been put up by people anonymously, so do not assume that every blogspot site owner is in fact the owner of a share that they have linked to. More times than most, they aren't, all they've done is found a link somewhere else, and copied it onto their site. It is plagurism I know, but because it's anonymous, everyone is none the wiser.
Some of the better sites have very large fileshares available now, using mp3's at 320bps rate, or even the larger raw FLAC format files, which is better quality but have larger file sizes. This is an issue for many people, as most are on capped download limits per month (like me), and the larger these files are, the faster your download cap is eaten into. Personally, files ripped at 192bps is fine by me, and if it's an old vinyl LP that is the source, I'm not really that fussed to hear the odd crackle and pop sampled at 320bps! Seems pointless really..
I believe that many of these sites will eventually fall by the wayside, due to lack of time, committment and reward. Indeed, if one was to study to rise, proliferation and fall of many melodic rock websites from between 1996 and 2003, you'll see that many of those sites weren't able to sustain their presence for very much those same reasons. I feel that these blogspot sites will suffer from the same symptom. It is a survival of the fittest. Look at it this way: it takes a huge resource of time and effort to source, clean, tag and upload albums to a blogspot site. Sometimes, hackers get in and remove links, which then frustrates the blogspot site owner no end. Just look at Kissmar's constant shuffling around of his blogspot sites (kissmar, kissmar2, kissmar3, believing, theheaven..) One day, he may just decide to chuck it all in because it's too much work for too little reward. Philanthropic though it may be, others (particularly bands and record labels) don't see it that way.
The other thing to consider is that blogspot site owners don't have total control over their domain. They are in effect using a free domain (blogger.com, affiliated to Google) to create accounts and upload content. It's not as if they have gone out and built a proper website from scratch. This also gives rise to the suggestion that many of these blogpot sites are nothing more than 'fly-by-nighters', who - once they get tired of the whole thing, will just shut down their sites and go about their lives as if nothing ever happened.
In 2009, the blogspot world is very much a phenomenon. It looks as if it is here to stay in the short term. Beyond that, who knows. I am thinking that technology might have a big part to play in all of this.. whether for the right reasons or wrong, there may be some future and dire consequences for us all in the way that we obtain and listen to our music. All because today's generation of Netizens have come to expect that just about everything available on the Net is for free.
|The passing of Michael Jackson
In my very early life growing up in a musical household, I will say a few things that I remember vividly. Firstly, my older sister was a huge fan of music. Yep, she was a subscriber of teen magazines such as Tiger Beat, and I grew up knowing full well who the Patridge Family, The Osmonds, The Jackson 5. Bobby Sherman etc were.. as well as other outfits such as The Raspberries. As our own Eric Abramhamsen will testify, the early 70's pop scene was an age of innocence at face value, but deep down there were darker secrets to be held, as I'm sure all will be revealed with the history of the late Michael Jackson - the proclaimed King Of Pop. It doesn't matter what era you are from, and who can rightfully be called the 'King Of Pop' (Elvis fans bite your tongue), it goes without saying that Michael Jackson's contribution to popular music over three decades is immense.|
I will admit to admiring Michael as a little tyke during his Jackson 5 days, not fully appreciating the childhood turmoil that he endured. I certainly admired his late 70's and early 80's era. his 1979 album 'Off The Wall' was a wonderful slab of pop/disco that remains a catalyst for that sub-genre to this day. His venture into MTV with songs such as 'Billie Jean', 'Beat It' and his tour-de-force 'Thriller' remain fixtures of that era. Certainly, these were good days for Jackson, prior to his era of 'wacko-ness'.
Just what prompted Michael to venture down his path of eccentricity will be up for conjecture by everybody. No doubt everybody has an opinion as to his decline, but let it be known that only those closest to him should be the ones that will have the full picture. Media harvesters such as Perez Hilton and TMZ will tell you that they have the full disclosure on Jackson, but don't let their false testimony be the fulcrum of truth, because it isn't. Let's hear it from sisters Janet and Latoya, brothers Jermaine, Tito, Marlon etc to tell it how it is from a family perspective.
Michael Jackson has been described by good friend Sir Paul McCartney, and elsewhere throughout the media since Thursday - as a boy who never grew up. Interesting also, that those who turned their backs on him during his court-case for child abuse are the first to jump on the band wagon of solace and remembrance. Some friends you had Michael! That's all I will say to those turncoats.
Yes, in later days, it was easy to see how much of a freakshow Michael had become. Physical disfigurement (the nose, the whitening, the chin etc), his bizarre behaviour, his financial crises, it was all there for everyone to see. The strange irony in all of this, is that Michael had left debts of up to half a billion dollars. It now seems that with the execution of his estate, will etc, recent sales of his back catalogue after his death, will see that all debts will be paid off with $$ to spare.
And of his impending concerts in London that he was rehearsing for (some 50 shows worth).. It seems that the Concert promoters who have pocketed all the $$ from pre-sold tickets, have suddenly gone to ground.. will the punters be able to get their money back? MJ won't be back from the dead to perform, no last minute surprises can be offered up from the Promoters..
Personally, this is a great tragedy for pop culture in general. In some ways I am glad that Michael does not have to put up with all the media bullshit that has surrounded him like a wagon wheel since those accusations of child abuse were levelled at him. I am also glad that all the vultures who have scavenged off his existence will no longer be able to. I was hoping that Michael would've been able to burn his demons at the stake by delivering high quality performances through his London shows.. sadly this will not happen.
Though not a huge fan, I am an admirer, and will continue to be so - long after his passing.
|Blog: Z Rock = Zero!
When is a Rock Festival a festival? What constitutes the title as such? The quality of the acts turning up, the venue, the efficiency of the organizers? The numbers of people turning up? Over the last few years we've seen 'Fests' come and go. Z Rock, Firefest, Rocklahoma, Sweden Rock, the Melodic Rock event back in 2007, and no doubt a few others.|
Like anything in life, for all the 99 things that are good in the world, there are one or two things that polarise everybody, and spoil it for the majority. Case in point: Z Rock, or Z Records, or Z boss Mark Alger - who it seems can't buy a trick even it was given away free to him.
In the melodic hard rock (MHR) community, Mark is one guy that has for years done the wrong thing more often than the right. And from what I hear on the grapevine, he doesn't really care! If we wind the clock back to before the millennium, Z Records gathered a reputation for not honoring its contracts with their artist base. Our good friend Tommy Denander has recounted over the years his absolute distrust of the Z organisation and Mr Alger. Add to that D2's Ted Poley, Marcel Jacob, and a handful of others. How Mark Alger has managed to stay in business this long and get away with this nonsense defies belief.
Though it has been mentioned often, about how this seems to be a repetitive issue, some level of blame needs to be pointed at those people who perpetuate the problem by allowing him the luxury of doing it time after time, and getting ripped off again and again. I'm talking about those who say 'I'll give him another chance', or 'I still want to support the MHR scene, so I should attend'. What suckers! what absolute suckers.. This is exactly the sentiment he wants to hear, and stupid idiots (I'm pointing the finger at mainly British fans who should know better) just keep feeding him the money by purchasing tickets, and getting a raw deal in the process.
And just how successful an event is it anyway? How many punters turn up? 100, 200, 300? Surely no more than 500?
Some blame should be levelled at bands/acts too. An eight year track record of more misses than hits should've been the red alert flag for all potential attendees to steer a wide berth. Hopefully, guys like Steve Augeri and Kevin Chalfant should be forewarned before the organising of Z Rock 2010 kicks into high gear.
Anyone involved in promoting Z Rock events should be held accountable too. It's good to see Andrew McNeice finally pulling the pin on any Z Rock thread started up on the mr.com Noticeboard. GLORY-DAZE has for years, made it a policy not to get involved with Z Management, nor promote any of its activity.
Some of our readers, most over at Heavy Harmonies as well as mr.com have previously laid into Sam McCaslin for his attempts at promoting Retrospect Records. Honestly, Sam has been doing the right thing by paying royalties to his roster, and that label is now reaping the benefits of its association with such acts. The same can't be said for Z Records, which as far as I'm aware, has very rarely paid out any royalties on the albums it has released. It just seems to be a money train for Mr Alger to continue on his wicked way.
Now is the time to make a stand people. Root out this man once and for all. The only way to deny him continued and unfettered access in the world of MHR is to hit him in the pocket. That means buying no more Z product, no more Z promotion, no more Z Rock events. Basically, it is time to make this man a pariah. Enough is enough..
|Blog: Who's Got Talent?
What is going on in our world? We're ruled by Politicians who think they know best for us, Reality TV shows are everywhere. Forensic television ensures that we've all become a bunch of homicide investigators - outdoing Grissom, Horatio and Bones at their own game.. or so you would think. |
So what to make of shows like American (substitute for country) Idol, (Country substitute): Got Talent, So You Think You Can Dance, Dancing With The Stars and Stars In Their Eyes etc etc etc. We look back over the years and remark at how successful Daughtry, Bo Bice, Kelly Clarkson, Paul Potts, J.D Fortune (INXS Superstar), Clay Aiken (ok, he came second, but where has Reuben Studdard disappeared to?), Australia's Guy Sebastian, Shannon Knoll (ok, he finished second too) and the uber talented Bianca Ryan have become. There have been more, but these ones are off the top of my head.
And of course, just around the corner we have the media juggernaut that is Susan Boyle (at the time of writing, she's only into the finals of UK's Got Talent), and just last week we saw Adam Lambert and Kris Allen fight it out for top dog on American Idol. Is it a bit too much to ask where the A&R guys are now? And how come there are no more surprises out there - away from TV shows, MySpace and.... MySpace? (haha!)
The likes of Simon Cowell have taken over the identification of talent, along with an audience of millions who vote with their mobiles via texting. It sure was a lot different in my day, when bands had to pay their dues by slogging away in some no-name bar with some no-name talent scout in the audience - who was more interested in the broads and beer on display. There is a certain irony that many of the new kids on the block are rehashing old ideas with scant disregard for originality. Now that might be more by design rather than by choice (TV Execs, managers, suits etc).
Even Adam Lambert, who I think is a pretty good talent, has bought into the dark hair look and glam style/threads that guys like Bowie, Ferry, Ronson et al were doing 30 years ago. After performing with Kiss and Queen, one has to wonder what is in store with Mr Lambert? Perhaps a phone call from Messrs May and Taylor? I reckon he has this mid 80's Paul Sabu look goin' on - but that's just me!
Same goes for Bianca Ryan, a young kid with a massive voice on her (part Celine Dion and LeeAnn Rimes). She sings with such power and clarity, you have to wonder, what else does she need to achieve? She's already released her debut album. Who does she need to impress? I say - nothing and no-one. She could give singing away right now.. Perhaps someone could persuade her to release a hard rock album with songs provided by Diane Warren, Holly Knight and Robin Randall. Now wouldn't that be something!
In our hard-pressed genre of AOR and melodic rock, I kinda like the underground nature of the scene at the moment, and I'm pretty certain that it will never rise to the heights (if it actually ever did rise to any significant height) ever again. The only reason why it's still around is that good music has a hard time disappearing off the map. The most important thing is whether we'll still be discussing the subject in 50 years time, and ... if Music TV Shows will still be pumping out one-hit wonders in 2050.
|Blog: Wintry Weather, Illegal Downloads, Piracy, and some new Releases!
ENGLISH WEATHER - FINALLY..|
They say the English weather is not something to be proud of. Winter temperatures during spring and occasionally summer. That must be one of the reasons why there is a high ex pat population of Poms, Kiwis, and South Africans living out here on the edge of the desert. Well here in West Australia, it's just been dry, hot, and more of the same. Winter doesn't officially kick in until June down here in the Antipodes, but it seems the cold snap has landed early back home in Kiwi-land, while over in the land of Rooze and Qwalas (kangaroos and koalas to everybody else on this planet) we've all forgotten what rain looked like, and what it smelt and felt like. Until today that is..
When it rains in Australia, it isn't a small spit here, or a passing squall there. It comes in dumpster truck loads thereof, and as of today, Southeast Queensland is under water, New South Wales is in for some liquid drenching, while the Southwest of W.A where I am, we've seen more rain in one day than in the past 9 months put together. Some mothers even remarked that their newborn babies have no idea what rain is! It's pretty wild and wooly here, though not cold. I'm still running around in a tee-shirt.. the locals think I'm mad..
Seems some people were slightly annoyed that the new Dream Theater album 'Black Clouds And Silver Linings' has been leaked out onto the Internet. The band are now signed to Roadrunner - the album officially released on June 23rd, so any brickbats for illegal downloads should be thrown at people who have dubious connections to the label - as traditionally, this is how the album is leaked in the first place.
Previous DT recordings were distributed through Europe and the UK via InsideOut Music - and if my memory serves me correctly, the label did pre-distribute many of their new releases out to certain parties (Journos, distributors, website editors etc), so it was only a matter of time before these made it out onto the Blogspot and BitTorrent Universii long before the official release date. I know in my time dealing with InsideOut and SPV/Steamhammer, you do notice that many of their new releases can be located on the Internet this way, which certainly points the finger at people (again) loosely associated with the label.
I suspect that there will be a change of business model by many of these companies - to limit pre-releases to either: audio clips on MySpace, audio clips on bands websites, videos on YouTube, or crippled pre-release CD's with voiceovers. Once the CD has hit the market upon release date, then it becomes a bit harder to prevent illegal downloads.
One solution for smaller labels is to keep CD releases to a set quantity (say 1000 copies), give them unique numbering, make the inner jackets and liner notes exceptional, lyric information, and to add value to it that you will not find on an mp3 download, like a mpeg of FLV video clip. Selling the benefits of the physical CD product is the best way for labels to re-attract buyers, not complain that they are being ripped off.
With online distribution portals such as ITunes and Amazon, the days of the physical CD might soon be at an end, in which case, discerning between a 'legal' download and an 'illegal' download borders on the fuzzy!
SPAIN - THE WORST ILLEGAL PIRACY OFFENDER?
Last month saw the media circus turn up in Stockholm for the Pirate Bay court hearing, which by all accounts, was a bit of a jack-up and media beat-up. For goodness sake, the presiding judge has spider fingers into the industry that is trying to prevent illegal downloads! Where's the transparency in that? The European Union seems to be at odds in how to combat illegal downloads of entertainment media - the biggest loser is the movie industry, less so the recording industry, though the RIAA in their infinite wisdom will tell you otherwise. The RIAA do not have the sphere of influence in Europe that they tell everyone they do. I mean.. RIAA = Recording Industry Association of America. So why are they sounding as if they are a global industry watchdog? They aren't..
Reading reports this week, that Spain has cropped up as the biggest serial offender of downloads does not surprise me. Just look at all the blogspot sites offloading rock music for instance. They are everywhere, not forgetting our friends in that other Spanish haven.. Argentina, who seem to be hell bent on sharing everything and sundry. Is there no such thing as discretion and privacy anymore?
And then you get the Industry Cabal in the UK who are trying to put pressure on the UK ISP's - asking them in effect, to become 'their' Internet Traffic Police. Quite rightly, the ISP's have told them (more or less) to fuck off.
I'm sure we haven't seen or heard the last of this business, but how about we try asking the RIAA that they should embrace technology and the future, and redesign their business models to play 'catch up'. Seems to me that the RIAA and their record label cronies are still lost in the past. And as for the name/title 'record label', who the hell makes records these days? To me, this just reinforces just how far back in the past some of these moguls are. Get with the times for goodness sake!
NEW RELEASES SHORTLY
This week saw the release of the three Babys albums plus Sammy Hagar's 'Street Machine' album via Rock Candy Records. You can get a special deal if you buy them in bulk. See our news item (front page) on this.
What else is out soon? There are three Frontiers releases today (22 May): Pathosray - 'Sunless Skies', Norwegian metallers Saint Deamon and their second release 'Pandeamonium', plus Primal Fear's 16:6' album.
Simple Minds have a new release called 'Graffiti Soul' - might be worth having a catch up with them to see what they sound like these days. Not forgetting the new Escape Music CD from Vindictiv, and their second effort 'Ground Effort'. Talking of Escape, a third release from Alistair Gordon's Radio Silence will be released in a few weeks. His backing band includes members of Gypsy Rose and White Wolf, albeit the Swedish members thereof..
UFO, Magnum, Saga all have new releases out on SPV/Steamhammer, plus of course the new Roswell Six release 'Terra Incognita' - mentioned in our news section, released through Progrock Records.
More bloggin' on the way..
|Blog: It's our 10TH Anniversary!
Well wouldn't you know it! Ten years has snuck up on us just like that!|
Yes GLORY-DAZE, And its predecessor before that - HEART of the ROCK, is now officially ten years old!
Life for the website kicked off on May 9th, 1999, however it was nothing like how it is now.
For those of you that are interested, let me give you a brief run through of our history.
It started out as a small site hosted on the (now defunct) webhost XOOM.com. It was built using very rudimentary HTML pages using the Netscape Communicator (god, anyone remember that?) set of tools. It survived well into 2000, before I then went serious and bought the domain name heartoftherock.com. We still used Netscape tools well into 2002 but by 2003 we looked at other tools, mainly for interactive purposes. We even went into a Forum environment for awhile, man, that was a disaster, until finally settling on Web Portal tools such as PHP-Nuke, Dragonfly, and now PHP-Fusion, where we have lived ever since 2005.
We changed the name to GLORY-DAZE back in 2003. It was about then that we attempted to place all our monthly content into a digital E-Book environment. For the months of March 2003 through to July 2003 we gave it a go, but the workload was too much, and the uptake to the new format fizzled big time - so back to the web we went.
We've stayed on the web ever since, and have a low to medium presence on the web. I for one am not particularly interested in building this site up to be big and spectacular. I much prefer it to be in the AOR Underground, in keeping with the style of music we support and love.
Some Interesting Memories
Here are few notable memories. There are many more, but these ones stick out, for obvious reasons..
2002 saw the release of the debut 'Mecca' album. Our reviewer of this album at the time was South African AORster Lee Bradfield. He gave it a fair review, but only rated it 7/10 on the AOR richter scale. Well, when Joe Vana found out about it, he gave us merry hell! The situation ended up with me advising him of the dangers of 'believing your own hype', and that he should be careful who he chooses as his friends to promote his work. I also removed the Mecca review of our site, never to be resurrected, and in future, we plan to never have anything to do with him or his band. Period.
2001 also saw the White Diamond drama unfold! Well, what a bizarre set of circumstances this was! If people may remember, a chap called Don Lemmon (who passed away a couple of years ago now) was behind the situation involving a band called White Diamond. The story goes, the band were originally from Ohio, relocated to L.A, weren't successful though they were popular apparently, and somehow their life history was going to be converted into a movie. We did a full interview with Don Lemmon, and somehow, the pieces just didn't seem to fit. Many shakers and movers in the L.A scene at the time the band were in operation don't ever remember seeing or hearing the band. Many thought that White Diamond was nothing more than an invented story to 'hype' up the forthcoming movie. Even more bizarre when Don mentioned that he was the bass player in the band! You had to be there to experience what was going on. If there is one chap (who is close to us here at GDAZE) who knows the complete story, it is Per Riise from the Norwegian band Winter Parade, who were also tied into Don Lemmon back in the day. One day we might get the full picture!
John Ryan and Church Of Scientology
Interviewing the late Greg Guidry back in Nov 2000 was an interesting experience, considering his producer John Ryan (you know the guy, Styx, Climax Blues Band) did not agree with the comments when he saw our initial first published interview. I was surprised that John found our interview so soon online, considering Google was still in the 'egg' so to speak. Greg mentioned that JR was not happy about Greg's suggestion to use a studio novice and very green guitarist called Dann Huff to play on his album. John said Dann did not have any experience and that they should be using someone else. Greg refused, and threatened that the album's production was 'on the line'. JR relented, and as time would have it, Huff became a major studio legend - all thanks to Greg's insistence. Greg was none too happy about the way the album 'Over The Line' came out production wise. He mentioned that it came out far too soft, and wanted it to be a bit more rockier, instead it became a west coast classic. During that period, there was three way dialog going across the email, with Greg and John in a slanging match (me watching via cc), until it got to the point where John threatened legal action if we did not remove the bits of the interview which he deemed incriminating. I asked Greg if he was happy that his words stood firm, he said yes. That was enough for me. Until, I had a look online to see John Ryan's track-record for taking out lawsuits against people he didn't like, or get on with. The list was mind-boggling. Also in the list, was the fact that his wife was Ron L Hubbard's daughter! Ron L Hubbard - you might know from his 'Dianetics' book, and also as the founder of the Church Of Scientology. Eeks! John had even taken his father in law to court! Erring on the side of caution, I removed/tidied up the written interview with Greg to avoid any future legal hassles. To this day, the flurry of email exchanges was enough to put me off a career of Record Label Management forever!
METALLICA - ST ANGER
This was another bizarre circumstance that occurred during 2003, and dumbfounded both myself and the album reviewer: Alun Thomas (aka Dangerzone). Alun had reviewed 'St Anger', and in complete contrast to all the other major reviews of the album (which weren't that great), gave it a high score, and a very good reason as to why he thought so. At the time, our website was inside a Forum based system, and I allowed the general public to be able to comment on Alun's review. Unbeknown to us, a major news site for rock/metal (I think it was Blabbermouth, but I can't remember who it was) reported our review in a news item on their site, which in turn, saw hundreds of thousands of hits to our site/review. There were so many comments on the album, it just defied belief! I guess it was because the Metallica boys had just completely polarized their audience with the album, and everyone just wanted to have a say about it - and our review seemed to be the place to do it!
Currently we have about 3600 reviews on the site, my short aim is to get it to 5000, and move on from there.
GLORY-DAZE has a dedicated bunch of guys that have been long time supporters. I think you know who you are. Thanks for that.
We have stayed true to our heritage, and we've tried to put the emphasis on writing interesting stuff that won't bore you, or turn you off. We have also tried to make our reviews as articulate and full - as possible. Band lineups, record labels, track listings, history, other related reviews, audio and video samples - not too many review sites have as good a quality of information as we do, and we will continue to do so into the future.
Thanks for sticking around for the first TEN years, let's see what the next ten may bring.
Regards to all the supporters of GLORY-DAZE!!!
George Thatcher (Editor, Webmaster) and the GLORY-DAZE team.
|Blog: May 2009 Happenings and other general stuff
Well what's happening this month of May 2009? |
We're doing a few 'under the hood' things with the website. Looking at some new functionality to jazz it up a bit more.
We'll provide a bit of focus on what the Record Labels are up to. Would like to have a series of pages devoted just to Record Labels, and their reps, and would like for them to keep us updated on their latest developments, new releases, new signed artists etc.
We've recently gone back to putting a Public Guestbook back on the site. We took it off some time ago, because of security concerns, but technology has come some way since then, so it's back on! We occasionally do a full site backup anyway, just in case something goes wrong, and we can reload everything again pretty quickly.. so all good there..
Most of you will know I upped and left Godzone (a.k.a New Zealand) for the warm sunny climate of West Australia late last year. Things are going great, and I've made a few observations about the music scene here in Aust and W.A in particular.
Firstly, I will admit that the music scene is very vibrant here in W.A, but understandably, not so in the sub-genre of melodic hard rock and AOR. Yes, if you are into modern pop, country/folk, and obviously the Aussie styles. Radio here is appalling. There is only one decent station here in W.A, and it happens to be an AM station, not FM. So travelling around the vast distances of West Australia is not helped by listening to useless jibbering idiots and their annoying Aussie vernacular. Phrases like 'gidday mate', 'strewth', oi oi oi' you can only take so much..
However, on a national scale, hard rock and metal is still an active market. Recently, bands such as Armored Saint, Black Tide and Trivium have made their way 'down under', but these international bands usually only travel between Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne - no doubt due to keep the travel costs down and there being more popularity out East. Chris Maric from Riot Entertainment keeps us Aussie rockheads in the loop with his weekly email blasts.
WHAT'S UP WITH THE GLAM ROCK SCENE?
Over the last few weeks, I've had many inquiries from rock bands in the glam genre, reviewed a few albums too, which leads me to ask, 'is the glam rock scene on the comeback trail'? I asked Kelv Hellrazer this question a few weeks ago via Skype. He laughed and said, 'the scene will be back when either Kim Fowley or myself says it is'.. Haha, it certainly seems that way in places like Sweden and Italy. No doubt we'll be hearing more over the next few months.
MY TAKE ON THE ANGELMILK DEBACLE
I don't usually like to talk about one's dirty laundry in public, but the recent spat on the melodicrock.com Noticeboard regarding the record label Angelmilk was an absolute PR disaster. The problem where you have an arrangement between a record label and a very popular website is that the lines of responsibility get blurred. Andrew McNeice does a wonderful job there, and is mostly responsible for keeping a low-flying genre such as AOR from digging trenches with it's rotor blades! It's not for me to say that he should never have taken up a role with Angelmilk in the first place. Time is a great redeemer, but the arrangement sounds like it was never going to be a 'manna from heaven' quite purely because of the small logistics involved. Again, kudos to Andy Bramhall for putting his own money on the line to create a label like this, but unfortunately the circumstances did not work out. For this to degenerate like it did on the Noticeboard, and for other parties to poke their nose in on the discussion when it wasn't warranted was completely disgraceful. Honestly, some of the idiots on that Board need to get a life!
ESCAPE MUSIC RELEASES?
What is going on at Escape Music? The next few releases coming up from them include a couple of Australian bands: ERUPTION and ILIUM. I'm not sure what convinced the boys over at Escape to release these. From reports I've read, they both sound pretty ordinary. I also had a look at some of Ilium's previous releases (including video) from their past three releases. I was not impressed. Someone has obviously done a good 'sell job'.
HANGLOOSE RECORDS - GERMANY
This well known German mailorder company has some interesting releases on their catalog. Some so good, you really have to wonder if they are legitimate releases or bootlegs? My guess is. .they are the latter. Regular GDAZER rostoned, has pointed out many times in the past that some of the Euro reissue labels have very dubious items on their catalog, and if there is anyone who should know, it will be Filippo!
Anyone happen to listen to the new Saga album 'The Human Condition'? Of course, it features top Canuck singer Rob Moratti as the new voice for the band. It was always going to be an interesting situation to find out how both he and the band would handle the change in vocal style with their new songs. I guess we'll be sooner the wiser come end of the month and into June 2009. Head over to Saga's Myspace page for a listen..
More blogging soon..
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