Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 8/4/16
Each Thursday, Hard Rock Music Time Machine takes a journey back in time to feature a variety of songs that date back as far as the ’70s, the ’80s (the glory days of hard rock), hidden gems of the ’90s and hard rock/metal songs of the new millennium (as recent as a few years ago).
Whenever possible, it will also contain interviews from featured artists discussing the inspiration and meaning behind their songs. On the last Thursday of each month, we will be doing special themes that feature songs based on specific categories or years.
In addition to appearing on the embedded YouTube playlist below, all songs featured on Hard Rock Music Time Machine can be listened to individually by clicking on the hyper-linked song titles above each review.
ADAM WALDMAN – (Publisher, Hard Rock Daddy)
SEVENDUST – “Unraveling” (2010)
There’s a saying that goes…“when words fail, music speaks.” Often times in life, I find that songs come to mind that seem to have been written for that moment in time. Of course, more often than not, my interpretation is different than the actual inspiration for the song. Such is the case with “Unraveling,” which is about the collapse of a relationship, but in recent weeks, the song has been playing in my head for other reasons.
“Unraveling” is the lead single from Sevendust’s 2010 release, Cold Day Memory, the first album featuring Clint Lowery back on guitar after taking time away from the band to play with his brother (Corey) in Dark New Day.
Although “Unraveling” has some intense moments for emphasis, overall, this song showcases the more moody, melodic side of Sevendust. The lead vocals and harmonies drip with tortured beauty over a heart-pounding rhythm. Clearly, the band picked up right where they left off with Lowery back in the fold.
MEGADETH – “Sweating Bullets” (1992)
“Hello me…meet the real me!” This classic song has gone through three incarnations for me. For two decades, “Sweating Bullets” was simply one of my favorite Megadeth songs. For a time brief period, it became a source of pride and joy as my young daughter would sing the opening lines in her car seat as she flashed the horns on her tiny hands. During the current election cycle, the song has taken on a whole new meaning, as we are often left to wonder if we even get to meet “the real me” from candidates who appear to be in a race to the bottom. Who knows? Maybe Dave Mustaine will be inspired to write a sequel to this song in the not-too-distant future.
ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout
BAD RELIGION – “Los Angeles Is Burning” (2004)
I don’t know if it’s because of all the political rantings and ravings recently, but I’ve been listening to a lot of Bad Religion lately. One of the best lyricists to write politically charged lyrics is Greg Gaffin. “Los Angeles is Burning,” from The Empire Strikes First, is a song that condemns the media as a tool of evil, rather than good. It is the epitome of a great punk rock song with its heavy riff, melodic choruses and hard-hitting drums. As long as the political wheel keeps turning, bands like Bad Religion will be inspired to write great songs like this.
TYPE-O-NEGATIVE – “Everything Dies” (1999)
From their 1999 album World Coming Down, “Everything Dies” is the song that encompasses the message of Type-O-Negative to me. Negativity, doom, depression and sadness. The band sets the mood perfectly with the slow drone of the musical arrangement, and Peter Steele’s deep baritone wailings. One of the best goth metal bands to ever exist, Type-O-Negative disbanded in 2010 when Peter Steele died. Ironic?
ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout
DYNAZTY – “Sultans Of Sin” (2012)
These Swedish rockers cranked out some heavy harmonies on this title track from their third album. Formed in 2007, the band of musicians came together first and then launched a Myspace search for a vocalist. They found one with style and a whole lotta range in Nils Molin. Dynazty has a new album out this year called Titanic Mass.
SAXON – “Valley Of The Kings” (2009)
It’s an amazing moment for me when a band that I’ve followed for decades releases a new song that simply soars to the top of my list of their best work. British heavy metal band Saxon is approaching four decades of great material, replete with classics and concert must-hears, and yet this melodic masterpiece from 2009 instantly became one of my favorites.
CHRIS HERZEGOVITCH – HRD Music Scout
VAN HALEN – “Crossing Over” (1995)
Here’s a relatively unknown bonus track from one of my favorite albums – 1995’s Balance. As the story goes, “Crossing Over” was originally written and recorded by Eddie Van Halen in 1983 after he lost a friend to suicide. Fast forward ten years – Van Halen’s tour manager died, and this song was given another shot. Eddie’s guitar wizardry and Sammy Hagar’s soulful vocals create an appropriate, supernatural feel, while Alex Van Halen’s percussion and Michael Anthony’s bass line keep it dramatic and heavy. This track was included in the Japanese release of Balance. In the U.S., UK and Germany, it was the “b-side” to “Can’t Stop Lovin’ You.”
TURISAS – “Stand Up And Fight” (2011)
Turisas is a Finnish symphonic battle metal band from Hämeenlinna. Founded by vocalist Mathias “Warlord” Nygård and guitarist Jussi Wickström in 1997, they are named after an ancient Finnish God of war. “Stand Up and Fight” is an epic change-of-pace anthem that weaves its story through an eclectic mix of styles. From serene to heavy to hardcore, this song is supported by orchestration that makes the sound truly massive. The chorus is rousing and thrilling as you might expect from a band that prides itself in being “as unique sounding battle metal as it gets.” Turisas is known to play most of their solos on electric violin (Olli Vänskä), as opposed to traditional guitar solos.