Hard Rock Daddy presents Music Discovery Monday – 3/9/15.
Each week, the HRD team shares songs that fly below radio’s radar, ranging from lesser-known artists to deeper cuts from both up-and-coming and established artists.
In addition to exposing the Hard Rock Daddy audience to new music that isn’t getting the attention that it deserves from radio, Music Discovery Monday also features a segment called “Hard Rock Music Time Machine,” which showcases older songs (from the 70s to today) that hard rock music fans may have missed at the time of release.
In addition to appearing on the embedded YouTube playlists beneath each section, all songs featured on Music Discovery Monday can be listened to by clicking on the hyper-linked song titles.
Some of this week’s songs appear on the recently published Top 100 Hard Rock Songs of 2014.
ADAM WALDMAN – (Publisher, Hard Rock Daddy)
MARENNA – “You Need To Believe”
One of highlights of the launch of Music Discovery Monday is the chance to discover music from all over the world. Today’s featured artist, Rodrigo Marenna, is a powerfully melodic singer hailing from Brazil. If you are a fan of the uplifting, melodic music of a bygone era, “you need to believe” that there are still artists out there who are keeping that style alive. If you appreciate passionate vocals, anthemic harmonies, huge hooks and guitar in the vein of Neal Schon, make sure to give Marenna a listen. From the first note to the last, Marenna delivers an inspiring brand of hard rock.
MESSAGE TO VENUS – “Hollow”
Referring to their sound simply as “21st Century Rock,” this Puerto Rican power quartet has made their home in Florida as they pursue their rock and roll dreams as a DIY band. With influences ranging from Tool to The Mars Volta to Led Zeppelin, M2V has created a unique sound with an Alice In Chains vibe that stands out when played on stations like SiriusXM’s Octane. “Hollow” is a powerful, driving song about living the life that you want to live by making choices for yourself. This is definitely a band to keep on your radar!
JON LOVELESS – HRD Music Scout
SMASH INTO PIECES (f. ELIZE RYD) – “My Cocaine”
One of the best finds of 2015 so far for me has to be this 5-piece group from Sweden. The guest vocal from Elize Ryd (the always strong voice of Amaranthe) takes the song to another level, giving it either a very melodic/symphonic-feeling active rock song, OR a very active rock feeling melodic rock song. It would make this a perfect introduction to North American audiences if radio took a little time to think it through and add this into rotation, but instead of waiting for that to happen, I’m more than happy to share it here and help readers get a jump on things!
ART OF DYING (f. DAN DONEGAN) – “Rise Up”
The title track off of the third studio album from this Vancouver, BC quartet was unveiled in the past week. It could very well help the band pick up where they left off after a trio of top 20 hits from their last album (almost four years ago). It never hurts to get a little help from your friends, so the appearance of guest Dan Donegan (Disturbed) certainly adds a little extra weight (although I’m not sure this radio-friendly track will need much additional help). Johnny Hetherington has a new look (see the video for evidence), but remains in fine voice.
ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout
BLIND GUARDIAN – “At The Edge Of Time”
There may be more going on here than the human ear can follow. Symphonic, progressive power metal featuring blazing guitars, soaring vocals and a full orchestra. The song drives forward without relent, but if you don’t linger here and there, you will surely miss the insane detail lovingly crafted into every measure. Everything about this song, and indeed the whole album, screams masterpiece. The band, hailing from Germany, worked with three world class choirs and two ninety-piece orchestras for this latest release.
STARGAZERY – “Dim The Halo”
Two great musicians well known in their native Finland, vocalist Jari Tiura and guitarist Pete Ahonen, combine forces in Stargazery to produce the music Rainbow might be playing if they were together today. Their chosen band name evokes memories of Dio-era Rainbow, but on “Dim the Halo” Jari is clearly channeling his inner Graham Bonnett. Filled with classic guitar riffs and prominent keyboards, this is hard rock with lots of groove and a catchy melody.
CHRIS HERZEGOVITCH – HRD Music Scout
SHADOWQUEST – “Last Farewell”
Epic song of final moments from bassist Jari Kainulainen’s new band (formerly of Stratovarious and Kotipelto). Awesome passion in the great vocals of Pata Johansson and the guitar of Peter Huss.
KIRK – “Time”
You really feel time running out fast in this pressure-packed track off of the album, Masquerade, from Swiss power metal band, Kirk. The guitar work (Sammy Lasagni) is reminiscent of Ritchie Blackmore, but at a furious pace kept in time expertly by Philipp Eichenberger.
HARD ROCK MUSIC TIME MACHINE
NUCLEAR VALDEZ – “Summer” (1989)
Hailing from Miami, and comprised of all Hispanic members, Nuclear Valdez offered up something truly unique when they made their debut in 1989 with their vastly underrated album, I Am I. Although “Summer” gained some attention at radio and MTV, the band never got the recognition that they so richly deserved. This single offers a politically charged commentary about the Cuban revolution of 1959. Unfortunately, the band would only go on to release two more albums (in 1991 and 2002).
THE DEAD DAISIES (f. SLASH) – “Lock ‘N’ Load” (2013)
Though The Dead Daisies are not a Latin hard rock band like the rest of my selections this week, they do feature Marco Mendoza (who spent his formative years in Mexico) on bass. However, the inspiration for including The Dead Daisies with other Latin hard rock bands is their recent historic performances in Cuba. There is a lot to love about this band (beyond the guest appearance by Slash). Though they are far from a household name right now, this supergroup has incredible potential to become a transcendent band in the genre. In addition to Mendoza (Thin Lizzy, Whitesnake), the band also features GNR members Richard Fortus (guitar) and Dizzy Reed (keyboard), drummer Brian Tichy (Whitesnake, Ozzy Osbourne), guitarist David Lowy and frontman Jon Stevens (INXS, Noiseworks). One listen to “Lock ‘N’ Load,” and you will undoubtedly become a fan of The Dead Daisies!
SMASH INTO PIECES – “A Friend Like You” (2013)
One of the benefits of discovering a new song from a previously unheard band is the opportunity to dig back into their catalog and find what you may have missed originally. This was the second single from the band’s first full-length album (Unbreakable). Lead vocalist, Chris Adam Hedman Sörbye does a fine job telling the story in song. The accompanying video fleshes out the story even more, providing a different take on complicated relationships from an angle that isn’t often addressed.
ART OF DYING (f. ADAM GONTIER) – “Raining” (2011)
The 2011 album Vices and Virtues produced three radio hits for the band, but I wonder, if not for circumstances, perhaps there might have been a fourth? Adam Gontier exited Three Days Grace just weeks after this song was released as a single, and airplay for it never really materialized. It seemed like a natural radio hit, and the relationship between the singer and the band was natural as well as band bassist, Cale Gontier, is the guest’s cousin. For whatever reason(s), this solid track was underexposed.
TERRY BROCK – “Up All Night” (2001)
Terry Brock showcases the perfect voice for melodic rock on his solo album. Add in some cool riffs and tight writing, and you have a combination that cannot miss. Now you might think that this is a love song as you start to listen, but by the time you reach the end, you’ll understand what the singer’s frustration is really about!
PLACE VENDOME – “Cross The Line” (2005)
When Michael Kiske (ex-Helloween) teamed up with members of Pink Cream 69 and Vanden Plas in 2005, the resulting all-star project was nothing less than magic. They’ve put out two more albums since, but “Cross the Line” (from their eponymous debut) boldly announced their arrival on the melodic rock scene.
MEGADETH – “Elysian Fields” (1994)
Just over 20 years old, one of my favorite tracks from Mustaine and company off of 1994’s Youthanasia. Great and memorable song of glory, appropriate to a resting place for heroes.
Y&T – “Mean Streak” (1982)
Another favorite. Unforgettable riffs open up this heavy and classic “man-eater” track from Y&T from way back in 1983. Dave Meniketti and the band are still going strong.
To be considered for Music Discovery Monday, please e-mail a link to the song being submitted on YouTube and an artist bio to…