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That time Genghis said...
Album of the Month - April
  • Madness
    Madness
    by All That Remains
Video of the Month - April
  • Awaken the Guardian LIVE [Blu-ray]
    Awaken the Guardian LIVE [Blu-ray]
    by Fates Warning
#AceOfSpayeds
  • Metal Cats
    Metal Cats
    by Alexandra Crockett
Props

CD of the Month
  • Mudvayne
    Mudvayne
    by Mudvayne
Inspiration
  • Lords of Chaos: The Bloody Rise of the Satanic Metal Underground New Edition
    Lords of Chaos: The Bloody Rise of the Satanic Metal Underground New Edition
    by Michael Moynihan, Didrik Soderlind
  • Retribution
    Retribution
    by Shadows Fall
  • Brutal Legend
    Brutal Legend
    Electronic Arts
Thursday
Dec012016

Podcast #211: Buff

Rags talks to none other than Tom Englund and Henrik Denhage of Evergrey and we all DRINK.The lads ventured out the weekend after Thanksgiving for a special event at their beloved local Buffalo Bayou Brewing Company and thought you might want to hear what went on. As you know, Genghis & Ragman always talk hard rock and metal while they drink beer and BuffBrew's Friendsgiving 2016 event was no different. So, enjoy some libation while the boys jabber, eh?

Later, Rags chats it up with Tom Englund and Henrik Danhage of one of his favorite European metal bands of all time, Evergrey, in an interview he did earlier this fall. Tom and Henrik discuss the new album, The Storm Within, and subsequent tour plans. HORNS UP!

NOTE: McCheese wanted us to remind you all that you should drink responsibly. To which we replied "DUH!"

Featured Tracks: Nitrogods - At Least I'm Drunk; Mr. Big - Merciless; Gama Bomb - Drinkers Inc.; AC/DC - Have A Drink On Me; Honky - Snorting Whiskey, Drinking Cocaine; Evergrey - More Than Ever, In Orbit, Someday, Distance, Passing Through, and The Masterplan

- Genghis is now getting his beer trading on (got some white whales to find)...

Podcast #211: Buff

Tuesday
Nov222016

ARW: An Evening Of Yes Music And More

"One down, one to go. Another town and one more show."

I remember when I first heard Owner Of A Lonely Heart and thinking "This is Yes? I like it!", which isn't to say I didn't already like Yes before that. But, it heralded a new chapter in the history of the venerable progressive rock band. That change was largely the result of adding South African guitarist Trevor Rabin to the roster and what became the spontaneous reformation of the band. And while Trevor may have been reluctant to do exactly that, his input helped to make for one of the band's most successful eras - if not the most. The celebration of that era was the setting for the ARW: An Evening Of Yes Music And More show I had the pleasure of seeing at San Antonio's historic Majestic Theatre recently.

I won't bore you with the theatre's history (check it out here, if you like), but the beautiful venue was the perfect setting for the evening's event, which started with me realizing that Jackie Earle Haley was briefly behind me in line for beer. The venue's baroque decor provided a certain sophistication to compliment the simplicity of the band's art deco backdrop lit in soft pastels, and I spent every spare moment admiring its charm.

After a symphonic overture, the band hit with Cinema, the Grammy-winning namesake of the nascent band that eventually became the reformed Yes in the 90s. This was a good start to things, but where I really perked up was for one of my favorites from 90125, the bluesy, dirty guitar-driven Hold On. One would assume that Chris Squire missing from the vocal mix would be an issue, but bassist Lee Pomeroy did a good job of making up for it. This show was particularly poignant for me since I never got to see Yes before now and I miss Chris Squire keenly as one of the icons of bass guitar. RIP, Chris.

The mix of old Yes songs was much approved by the audience. Classics like I've Seen All Good People, And You And I, and Long Distance Runaround (one of my all time favorites) made for wonderful connections between the Rabin-era and older material, prefaced by the anecdotal musings of the thoroughly affable Jon Anderson.

Near the end of the evening, Owner Of A Lonely Heart - the band's only number one hit in America - was naturally well-received including some of Trevor's most impressive soloing (and he hasn't lost a note in over 30 years, let me tell you), followed by the inevitable encore with the classic Roundabout to end the proceedings perfectly. This was an amazing show, plain and simple, and I was thrilled to see the band in such a beautiful venue for the first and only time. Bravo, gentlemen!

- Genghis would love to see a Blu-Ray release of this tour...

Monday
Nov212016

Lucid Fly - Building Castles In The Air

I'm betting this chick might want to sue her hairdresser.I love me some progressive music, as well you know, almost as much as I love Eva Green (it's true, I always turn off Casino Royale after she leaves for the bank). But like any other genre, it's hard to find something that sets any one act apart when it follows the genre's conventions as closely as new bands tend to do. When one of them adds something new to the mix or simply does what's expected but takes it to a higher standard of quality, that's when jaded old cynics like myself take notice. This is where bands like Lucid Fly come in.

Moving from one side of the country to the other in order to take their music to the next level, the melodic prog rockers have released Building Castles In Air, an album that both impresses and satisfies genre votaries like myself. Part of that credit goes to singer Nikki Layne, whose confident crooning can range from ethereal to ringing as the mood calls for it. Guitarist Doug Mecca however has a deft touch on the rhythymic side of things, with moody textures that never overpower the song as a whole. Apparently, having earned copious praise throughout their expanding realm of influence, they were hand-picked by Mike Portnoy to play on the Progressive Nation at Sea cruise in 2014 which put them in front and alongside many notable bands and upping their exposure considerably. And it is well-deserved, I can assure you.

The Bottom Line: Lucid Fly isn't just a progressive band with a female lead singer, they're a truly well-rounded band in terms of influences and they've got the chops to put out some truly impressive material. Keep an eye on this band.

- Genghis sure does want to go on one of those metal cruises one day...

Monday
Nov212016

Podcast #210: Video

The lads decide to take it easy this Hallow's Eve - and talk to Steve Grimmett to boot!This year's Halloween episode started off like any other, only with the boys deciding to spend the evening in the studio with a good old-fashioned horror movie (this one provided by none other than Mr. Lordi himself) and a nice little chat with the man himself, Steve Grimmett of Grim Reaper who discusses the band's tour and career. But strange things are afoot on this stormy evening as paranormal disturbances cause a reality shift for - well, it's probably best that you check things out for yourselves...

NOTE: With the lads' personal lives getting pretty hectic this year, there's not a traditional follow-up Day of the Dead show, but instead they're just skipping on ahead to the impending Christmas spectacular, the 10th Annual Kicks and Kisses show, where G & R pick the best and worst of 2016's heavy metal offerings. Coming soon. Horns up!

Video of the show: Dark Floors (2008) - Starring Mr. Lordi

Beer of the Show: Evil Dead Red (Alesmith Brewing Co.)
 
Appearance: 3.5
Aroma: 3.0
Palate: 3.0
Taste: 3.0
Overall: 3.0
"A beer that manages to pull off the tricky act of being very complex and balanced at the same time. Kudos to Alesmith!"
 

Featured Tracks: Lordi - The Kids Who Want To Play With The Dead; The Bloody Hammers - Lights Come Alive; Lordi - Hard Rock Halleluia; Grim Reaper - Fear No Evil; Steve Grimmet's Grim Reaper - Walking in the Shadows and Now You See Me; Grim Reaper - See You in Hell; Fastway - After Midnight; King Diamond - Spider's Lullaby; Trick Or Treat - They Must Die; Rage - Spirits Of The Night; Type O Negative - Wolf Moon

Genghis' Pick of the Show: Slayer - World Painted Blood

Ragman's Pick of the Show: Cradle Of Filth - Her Ghost In The Fog

- Genghis is still kind of trying to get back into the swing of things...

Podcast #210: Video

Wednesday
Nov162016

Dead End Drive-In

Over the last couple of years, the kind folks at Arrow Films have started unearthing some classic 80's horror films.  The latest one to get a makeover is Dead End Drive-In.  Man, I can still remember the trailer for this one as well as the song they played at the end.  Cool stuff.  This one was originally release in 1986, and yes, when you're watching it, it does feel dated, but does it really matter?  One huge improvement from the original is the transfer to 2K restoration.  The film quality looks great, and better than it's original release.

Dead End Drive-In is set in a futuristic city, ala Mad Max, but not quite that apocalyptic.  There is still structure, but the town is full of chaos.  Apparently the town is up to their ears in mischief, so the powers that be decided to imprison the troubled youth, of the town, at a drive-in theater.  Long story short, the kids go to the theater to see a flick, and unbeknownst to them, after the movie is over, they are now trapped.  I know if sounds kooky, but it is a fun watch, especially with the added clarity of the restoration.  Though this one isn't a Halloween or Friday the 13th, it's still a fun one to put on, with some pizza and a cold beer.

Bottom Line: Another cult classic, given the 5 star treatment by Arrow.  A fun flick with lots of action.

-Ragman is re-thinking taking the family to a drive-in, anytime soon.