Last Friday afternoon me and Jolene had the pleasure of covering and representing KISW at this small ceremony groundbreaking of the new future home of the Jimi Hendrix Park. Located at 2400 South Massachusetts Street in Seattle (at the Northwest African American Museum) off I-90, this phase one "Little Wing" ceremony was a great overview of what's happened in the planning process and the future vision for the park. Many guest speakers including Founder/Director Janie Hendrix, informal tables, great food and awesome music from Ayron Jones & The Way filled the 2-hr+ ceremony. For all the current info on the Jimi Hendrix Park download the brochure HERE or go to Facebook: www.facebook.com/JimiHendrixParkFoundation or the official website http://www.jimihendrixparkfoundation.org
The Jimi Hendrix Park Foundation Vision: Create a community space inspired by the electrifying music and story of Jimi Hendrix. To create a gathering place for individuals of diverse backgrounds and ages to celebrate cultural heritage, experience community pride, and enjoy innovative educational programming.
Remember to purchase the limited edition 2014 KISW/Jimi Hendrix Park t-shirts to help support the development of Jimi Hendrix Park. Proceeds from the sale of each shirt will go towards the construction efforts. CLICK HERE TO VIEW/BUY. For more ceremony photos go to KISW photos HERE and for complete photo coverage on my photo page HERE.
Update 7/15/14 6:30pm: Buy Pre-Sale Tickets now @JudasPriest.com or tomorrow at @Tickemaster.com - Pre-Sale Offer Code: DOMEDIRECT - Pre-Sale Starts: Wednesday, July 16th at 10am - Pre-Sale Ends: Thursday, July 17th at 10pm Buy Pre-Sale Tickets here! Full public sale on Ticketmaster.com at 10am Friday 7/18.
The Metal Gods Judas Priest are back! Touring behind their first new album in 6 years, "Redeemer of Souls" just came out last week and it's looking as if this will be their first Top 10 debuting album on the U.S. Billboard charts ever.
"Redeemer of Souls" takes a little getting use to for us long time Priest fans. Maybe we were expecting a pure balls-to-the-wall metal album which it really isn't. More of an over all Priest catalog (40+ years) feel from the early year sounds to the newer accustomed metal edge sounds. I can't get it out of my player, its a good album and needs to be bought especially for "Halls of Valhalla" and (my favorite) "Sword of Damocles" which are 100% classic Judas Priest.
"Metalizer" is the albums "Painkiller" and "Beginning of the End" is the albums closing balled that is to me a title premonition to the nearing future end of arena rock/metal. Our heroes like Priest, Kiss, AC/DC, Scorpions, Black Sabbath, etc are bigger than ever, but creeping near their end and we'll never see such a great genre of music and concerts again in our lifetime so I'm VERY excited I'll get to see Priest at least one more time. I can't remember how many times I've seen Judas Priest over the past 30+ years. You better come out to the show if you've ever been a Priest fan, the last times they played the Tacoma Dome was May 26, 1984 & May 18, 1986! Talk about a time machine in 2014!
Last time Priest was in town was October 29, 2011 at the WaMu Theater in Seattle (view photo album) and rumor had it then they were thinking ending touring as a whole for the band but thankfully the Metal Gods knocked some sense into them and they are back to deliver the goods to us fans and what we live for....METAL!
Opening for the Judas Priest U.S. Tour will be my buds Steel Panther! Known for their potty mouths, humorous sexual-overtoned lyrics and exaggerated on-stage persona that mock the very heavy metal music they play with the lifestyle (Sex, Drugs, Strippers etc.) of the famous 80s hair bands, you won't see a more entertaining opener or flashback to 1984 ever!
Don't let that fool ya, these guys are great musicians and the entertainment value with great tunes will shock and awe the people unaware of the band. Guitarist Satchel (aka Russ Parrish) was an instructor at The Guitar Institute of Technology (G.I.T.) at Hollywood's Musician's Institute and also played in Rob Halford's Fight band back in 1993 on the killer "War of Words" album! Singer Michael Starr is a vocal master and David Lee Roth wishes he still had what Michael Starr can do onstage. Their latest CD "All You Can Eat" just came out and again another crazy classic in the Steel Panther discography.
If your easily offended or have churchly eyes/ears NEVER listen to a Steel Panther song and for your God's sake NEVER watch a Steel Panther video. Remember "Death To All But Metal"!
The 7th annual Rockstar Mayhem Festival rolled into the White River Amphitheatre area on a perfect 90 degree day. Since the announcement of the bands on this tour earlier this year, many felt the bands on the bill were not heavy enough representation for Mayhem compared to its counterpart Uproar Tour. In some ways people were right, but I'm not hear to bitch about that because this was one hell of a great day from start to finish! The side stages were definitely the place to be this year. Erimha opened the whole show on the Victory Records Stage with their symphonic black metal. Unfortunately with this stage far away from the other two stages we never got back over to see any of the other bands scheduled there because show times overlapped with the Coldcock Whiskey and Sumerian Records stages.
So on the Coldcock Whiskey and Sumerian stages you had bands ranging from death metal to good old heavy duty rock/metal. There's no doubt our Top 3 favorite bands on these stages were Mushroomhead, Ice-T's Bodycount, & Texas Hippie Coalition. Mushroomhead should have been on the main stage. The crowd for Mushroomhead in the early afternoon was the biggest I've ever seen at Mayhem for the side stages in all the years I've seen it here. Check out this photo to see what i mean. Not a spot left anywhere.
Mushroomhead came out and just kicked everyone in the balls. Band members Stitch, Waylon and Jackie even went out crowd surfing with the fans. Travesty they only had a 25min set! With 7 masked members running around and stage and fronted with 2 lighted stage water drums its an amazing spectacle. They should be coming back to Seattle on a tour soon with two other theatrical bands that's gonna rule. Can't announce yet. Then in 2015 it's looking like a possible dual tour with Slipknot (Mushroomhead has been around longer) according to Corey Taylor. Now that would be awesome! Check out my exclusive Mushroomhead photos from backstage to onstage. CLICK HERE!
Right before Mushroomhead the Texas gunslinging hard rockers Texas Hippie Coalition laid down some crunch a little different from the more hardcore bands and it was killer to see the crowd enjoyed it! The mosh pit kept rolling while head Hippie "Big Dad Ritch" kept control of the crowd with his larger than life presence and big deep voice. Imagine Lynyrd Skynyrd/BLS meets Pantera! Check out their latest CD "Peacemaker"!
Just before the tour started Upon a Burning Body pulled a little publicity stunt(they won't admit it) stating their singer (Danny Leal) has disappeared. They denied it but the metal world reported it everywhere and I saw their Facebook page get all kinds of new likes. Hmm either way it's old news now cause he was there in the flesh tattoos and all.
Also hailing from Texas, Upon a Burning Body can get a crowd and mosh pit going with the best of them. We've always enjoyed shooting them in the past, especially during their blast-beat screamo anthem "Texas Blood Money" (see video). Also getting the crowd in a frenzy was California's deathcore metal masters Suicide Silence who featured new vocalist Hernan "Eddie" Hermida formally of All Shall Perish. Back in 2012 the band lost original singer Mitch Lucker in a motorcycle accident. Hernan was a perfect fit to the extreme Suicide Silence style. Check out their new video released July 1st "You Can't Stop Me" (see video)..plain BRUTAL! Not our cup of tea, but to each his own. The kings of deathcore Cannibal Corpse also played. Not exciting to watch but man they have such a hardcore legion of fans and that alone watching their pit and fans going crazy is entertainment enough.
Obviously besides Mushroomhead on the side stage the band everyone wanna to check out was Ice-T's Bodycount! 22 years ago they caused a whole media uproar with their song "Cop Killer" that eventually Ice-T pulled from the album (read all about it here) release but not as the last song on the set today. Even though the band is more gansta lyric related, they're more musically influenced by Suicidal Tendencies than any other band. Really was hoping they'd play "Institutionalized 2014" live but no luck. Such a great 2014 updated lyrical approach to the Suicidal classic from 1983. Not only was Sir Mix A-lot watching on one side of the stage but Avenged Sevenfold's M. Shadows & Zacky Vengeance with Mushroomhead's Jackie were on the other side. Their 35 min set was one of the more rememberable of all the bands at the festival.
On to the main stage we went. Trivium, Asking Alexandria, Korn and Avenged Sevenfold. Nothing against Trivium (been following them for years, fun to shoot) but Trivium is Trivium, I don't find anything musically special that catches my interest and really (we both did) questioned their mainstage slot. Surprisingly after we walked out of the photo pit we both looked at each other and said "They were great" at the same time. The weird thing is I can't pinpoint why ha!
Same thing with Asking Alexandria. Hailing for the U.K. this metalcore band with commercial appeal no doubt rocked the stage, but again I scratch my head as too what this band has with the younger crowd that appeals to them. I find nothing special musically that leaves any good impression in wanting to hear more and visually they just look like wannabes. The singer wore a white jacket, beanie and big Axl Rose-like white scarf on a 90 degree day. Really? Don't get me wrong, rather have them playing what they do and have it popular in the sub-genre than them playing some pop-rock crap, but I think popularity wise what they have now is what they are gonna always have.
Up next was Korn. Now this is what I'm talking about. Add that Brian "Head" Welch is back in the band with Munky, Fieldy, Jonathan Davis & the incredible drumming of Ray Luzier, Korn is back at the top of their game. Real rockstars delivering the goods and stageshow proving why they've lasted over 20 years and still going strong. Setlist: Falling Away from Me/Twist/Got the Life/Did My Time/Spike in My Veins/Hater/Get Up!/Shoots and Ladders/Coming Undone/Here to Stay/Never Never/Freak on a Leash/Blind. Really digging their new single "Hater" (which they played live), cross mix of the Korn sound with the Rage Against The Machine wha-wha riffing sound. "Hater" will be on "The Paradigm Shift: World Tour Edition" that will be available exclusively at Best Buy outlets in the U.S. beginning this Tuesday July 15. In addition to the original ‘The Paradigm Shift’ album that was released last fall, this expanded edition comes with several new tracks and live performances of familiar Korn favorites.
Headlining was the bombastic show of Avenged Sevenfold. The last of the arena rock bands? One of the few newer metal bands that can fill arenas around the U.S. and actually put on one hell of a stage show to go along with their dual guitar oriented metal featuring Zacky Vengeance & Synyster Gates. Like it or not they are the carriers of the newer generation of metal to the masses. Always enjoy a A7X show. Setlist: Shepherd of Fire/Nightmare/Bat Country/Hail to the King/Buried Alive/Seize the Day/Critical Acclaim/Afterlife/This Means War/Encore: A Little Piece of Heaven/Unholy Confessions.
Overall with the 2014 Rockstar Mayhem Festival it ended up as one of the better festivals even though we were not impressed originally with the full lineups for this supposed more heavier version of festivals.
Mike's Top 5 Bands of the 2014 Rockstar Mayhem Festival: 1) Mushroomhead 2) Korn 3) Bodycount 4) Texas Hippie Coalition 5) Avenged Sevenfold
Stephanie's Top 5 Bands of the 2014 Rockstar Mayhem Festival:
1) Mushroomhead 2) Body Count 3) Avenged Sevenfold 4) Korn 5) Texas Hippie Coalition
What a day it was! One of Time magazines 10 Greatest Electric-Guitar Players back in Seattle. For Yngwie Malmsteen, it's been over 10 years since he last played Seattle on the G3 Tour in 2003. I first saw Yngwie way back Jun 12, 1985 at the Mountaineers building in Seattle on the Rising Force Tour. Four more times he played Seattle and I saw them all before but last nights show at the Showbox Market took the cake. Before I talk a little bit about the show let me mention that earlier in the day Yngwie, Gary Hoey & Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal (Guns 'N Roses) went all the way to Guitar Center in Lynnwood to do a Q&A and M&G with fans (view all photos). What a great time that was for everyone that packed the place to see the guys.
Yngwie, Gary and Bumblefoot answered tons of questions ranging from beginners to the advance players in the audience. Loved how accommodating they all were to even the most simplest question of "How do I play faster?". Bumblefoot even had some of his hot sauce on hand to sell and when asked about it gave one of the best "ShopHQ" channel-like sales I've ever heard. Everyone got a laugh out of it.
Back to the show. Opening the whole show was Guns 'N Roses lead guitarist Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal. Jamming through a 7 song set that included songs like "Turnaround", "Raygun" and "Abnormal" it was his ending "Pink Panther Theme" song that got everyone's attention.
He rocked out his signature double neck gold Vigier guitar like a madman. One of the necks fretless and the other fretted. Thing is so big he had a hard time bending over to open his bottle of water. I ended up grabbing it and helping him open it in which he thanked me during the show to the crowd. Check out Bumblefoot online at www.bumblefoot.com.
Next up was Gary Hoey. World renowned guitarist who nearly got the Ozzy job back when Zakk Wylde ended getting it but took Ozzy's advice and moved to LA where in 1993 he eventually landed a Top 5 rock radio hit with the Focus cover of "Hocus Pocus".
Gary's new album, “Deja Blues,” takes on his blues side of playing in which he opened his show with "Going Down" and later showcased the title track during his set. Not only is he technical in his playing but he showed complete feel that sets himself from the rest and not pigeonholed in the only shredder category. Check Gary out online at www.garyhoey.com
Of all the years I've seen Yngwie Malmsteen play, I have to admit I've never seen him in such great mind, body and spirit. Saw him smile more times this day than all the years combined. This great spirit really showed.
Blasting through a set that included "Evil Eye", " "Seventh Sign", "Rising Force", "Baroque & Roll", "Overture / From a Thousand Cuts / Arpeggios from Hell", "The Star-Spangled Banner", "Black Star", "Spellbound" and " I'll See the Light Tonight" to name a few, I'm still in awe how fast, precise and technical he is with everything he plays. This God among Gods of the electric guitar kept his show interesting with his showmanship of throwing guitars, kicking guitar picks to the crowd and playing stuff us normal humans can only dream of playing. His neo-classical playing style in heavy metal can be closely viewed when he releases a new live DVD/CD this August. Check Yngwie out online at: www.yngwiemalmsteen.com
Hailed by TIME magazine as one the Top 10 greatest electric guitarists of all time, Yngwie Malmsteen is not of this world. For over 20 years I've been seeing him doing things on guitar your mind just can't comprehend. Yes, "I'm not worthy" will replay in your head over and over watching Yngwie play! Malmsteen became known for his neo-classical playing style in heavy metal back in the early 80s with Steeler & Graham Bonnet's Alcatrazz but it wasn't until he released his first solo album Rising Force in 1984 that slammed the whole guitar world on it's ear changed everything you heard from rock and metal guitarists in the remaining 80s. Not only is he an amazing guitarist he's one hell of a showman and his live shows are always exciting to watch. What's even more cooler is he started playing guitar after seeing our very own Seattleite Jimi Hendrix on TV. So you can probably guess they'll be a cool Hendrix portion to his Seattle show! Check out Yngwie at the 50 Years of Loud (Marshall) at Wembley Arena below.
Also on the bill, Yngwie hand picked the amazing Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal (Guns 'N Roses) & the one and only Gary Hoey!
Unfortunately originally scheduled tour guitarist Uli Jon Roth (ex-Scorpions) had to drop off the tour at the last minute because of a visa issue (see press release at bottom of blog). In his place they added (little confused on this since it's a Guitar God show) the blues rock Gary Douglas Band to the tour.
If you wanna meet Yngwie, Bumblefoot and Gary Hoey they'll be doing a special Q&A and autograph appearance at Guitar Center in Lynnwood, WA at noon the day of the show. Click here to see all the info on Yngwie's website regarding the Guitar Center appearances.
Check this shot I did of Yngwie way back at the Foundations Forum in the Burbank Hilton in Los Angeles like 20 years ago!
ULI JON ROTH’s PRESS RELEASE
“Unfortunately, we are forced to cancel my participation in this tour due to unforeseen circumstances which are beyond our control.
“We don’t know why, but work visas got mysteriously delayed for no apparent reason to the point where we were left with no other reasonable choice but to cancel at this late stage. In over 30 years of obtaining U.S. visas this has never happened to me, but I guess there’s always a first.
“I would have loved to play for the North American audience on this tour, like so many times before, but I’m sure my three guitar-playing friends will be just fine without me and will more than make up for it with their considerable skills. I’m wishing them best luck and lots of inspiration!”
How about this for a #TBT (Throwback Thursday) KISW post. Going through the garage tonight I found a cassette tape that had a clip from KISW's Local Lick's/Metal Shop back on 2/27/85! What did it include? How about Mike McCready's band Shadow before he went global ruling the world with Pearl Jam! Bassist Rick Friel is interviewed (he's 18 here as I was too) and their classic track "Don't Count The Tears" is played. Loved this band, they reminded me of the early Def Lepppard meets Kiss guitar sound. We'd go see 'em at local Skate Kings and other places and I always remembered watching Chris Friel on drums, amazing then and amazing now. I can remember listening to KISW as early as 1980 after the whole KJR am radio phase of the 70s ended and people moved to the better sounding FM dial! So I've probably been listening and following KISW longer than many of you blog readers been alive. Yes, consider me one of the Godfather fans of Seattle's Best Rock KISW 99.9FM! Now go crank this video! Shadow knows!
I know that headline had to catch your eye! You gotta see how awesome Chicago guitarist Rob Scallon is on his ukulele covering Slayer's "War Ensemble" - solos, headbanging and all! What's even cooler is it was mixed by our very own Seattle Riffs, Beards & Gear dude "Fluff" aka Ryan Bruce! Watch the original Slayer video then Rob's "War Ensemble" ukulele instrumental. Hail Don Ho! I mean Slayer ;) "Iron" Mike
Note: Since I was working with Behemoth this same night, Stephanie covered the Steel Panther show/photos for me ;) Here's her quick review & photos:
What can I say about the latest concert given by Steel Panther Saturday night at Showbox SoDo? Bad boys, raunchy music, raunchy shtick, lots of spandex and one hell of a good time. It's their formula and it continues to work. During "Community Property" Michael proudly announced that Seattle was the best crowd so far on the tour. Satchel astutely informed Michael that it was the first night of their North American tour so....... I'm going to hold onto the best crowd comment. The other cities have a high bar to beat us. ;)
I was privileged to have a full show pass to capture photos from their entire set and all of Michael Starr's outfits. I only had to duck and cover a few times as I was standing where a crowd surfer would likely land. Now that the band has 3 full length albums under their belt, some of the songs I had become accustomed to hearing have been dropped off the set list to make room for songs off of their newest release - All You Can Eat.
"Pussywhipped" "Party Like Tomorrow Is the End of the World"
"Just Like Tiger Woods" "If I Was the King"
"Eyes of a Panther" "Gangbang at the Old Folks Home"
Satchel's guitar solo
"Gold Digging Whore" "The Burden of Being Wonderful"
"Death to All but Metal"
"17 Girls in a Row"
"Party All Day"
Are you ready to ROCK tonight Seattle? Hopefully you got your tickets to either show cause they're both SOLD-OUT! Few tickets might possibly be available at the doors.
BEHEMOTH - Studio Seven - Metal Alliance tour with Goatwhore, 1349, Inquisition, and more. SOLD-OUT! This all ages show starts at 5:45 PM.
Poland's Behemoth are on the blazing trail of their new and most successful album release "The Satanist" which debuted the highest of any death/black metal band ever on Billboard's 200 at #34! Brutal, melodic and bone crushing sounds with mood and tempo changes unheard of from this extreme metal genre! Here's my favorite track on the new album - "Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer"
STEEL PANTHER - Showbox Sodo - All You Can Eat Tour with Future Villains opening. SOLD-OUT! This 21 & Over show starts at 8pm.
Steel Panther's latest release "All You Can Eat" just came out 4/1/14. Debuted on Billboards 200 at #40. The greatest 80's Hair Metal band ever still alive and kicking the world's ass, or did I mean licking? HA HA! Death To All But Metal!
Watch for our photos from both these shows soon! "Iron" Mike