Music Discovery Monday – 8/8/16
Music Discovery Monday shines a light on artists that are not getting the radio attention that they deserve, while also showcasing new singles by established bands that are likely to get airplay in the future.
In addition to appearing on the embedded YouTube playlist below, all songs featured on Music Discovery Monday can be listened to individually by clicking on the hyper-linked song titles above each review.
ADAM WALDMAN – (Publisher, Hard Rock Daddy)
PUNKY MEADOWS – “Straight Shooter”
The ‘80s and glam metal are virtually synonymous, but not every glam band got the recognition that they deserved during the decade of decadence. Musically and stylistically, Angel should have been one of the biggest bands of that era, but they never rose above the level of having a cult following. The band’s guitarist, Punky Meadows, was well-respected for his playing, but ridiculed by rock critics (along with the rest of Angel) for his all-white outfits and androgynous image. Even Frank Zappa piled on with his song “Punky’s Whips,” but Meadows took it all in good stride, even appearing on stage during a Zappa concert in his Angel costume back in the day.
Between 1975 and 1980, Angel released five studio albums and one live album. By 1981, the band had called it quits, although they would release anthologies and collections in the ‘90s and 2000s. After a lengthy absence, Meadows has returned with a solo album entitled Fallen Angel (an autobiographical play on words). However, one listen to “Straight Shooter” (a single from the album), proves that he certainly would have been justified to call the album “An Angel has Risen” if he so chose.
The song starts off with a huge intro, symbolic of the time period when Angel was at their peak. Meadows couldn’t have chosen a better singer for his return than Chandler Mogel, a brilliant young vocalist with an “old soul” who would have been a household name if he was around during the time that classic rock was current. Meadows’ memorable riffs and leads leave you wondering why he took so long to come out of retirement. In fact, you have to wonder why he ever retired in the first place. No matter. He’s back now and you should make it a point to check out this timeless single (and the rest of the album).
KANSAS – “With This Heart”
You know how you can go years without seeing a good friend and pick up right where you left off as if there was never a separation? That’s the same feeling that you get when you listen to “With This Heart” from Kansas’ first studio album in 16 years (The Prelude Implicit – dropping September 23rd). If you loved Kansas in the ‘70s and ‘80s, “With This Heart” will feel like a reunion of sorts. In fact, with Ronnie Platt’s soaring vocals, highlighted by the beautiful violin work of David Ragsdale and the distinct sound of David Manion’s B3 organ and keyboards, this song makes you feel like you’ve been frozen in time (in a joyfully nostalgic way).
Many years ago, when Steve Walsh was briefly replaced by John Elefante, Kansas released some outstanding material, albeit with a bit of a shift away from their traditional sound. With Platt at the helm (after Walsh’s retirement from the band), Kansas of today seamlessly bridges the gap to Kansas of yesteryear. If “With This Heart” is a “prelude” of things to come in September, Kansas fans will not be disappointed!
ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout
NECROMANCING THE STONE – “The Descent”
One of the newer bands that I have found really impressive is Pittsburgh’s Necromancing The Stone. This band has been around since 2014, and features previous members of bands such as Arsis, The Absence, Brimstone Coven and Black Dahlia Murder. Their blend of traditional and power metal reminds me of an old school, heavier version of bands such as Dio and Judas Priest. Their new album, Jewel of the Vile, is filled to the brim with melodic harmonies, fancy guitar work and a pounding rhythm section that throws in a few surprising blast beats for good measure. Be on the lookout for these guys!
KADAVAR – “Filthy Illusion”
Looking for an old school, classic metal band in 2016? This 3-piece outfit from Germany is what you are looking for! From their album Berlin, “Filthy Illusion” has the look, the feel and the sound straight out of the 1970s. Obviously influenced by Zeppelin and Sabbath (and not afraid to show it), these guys take their stoner/psychedelic rock sound to a whole other level by incorporating a few modern elements to their songs. Take a trip back to the ’70s and check out this album.
ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout
SALIVA – “Trust”
Saliva, out of Memphis, Tennessee, has been on the rock scene for 20 years now. They’ve gone through many lineup changes but keep putting out solid music, including this opener from their latest album, Love, Lies, & Therapy. Brimming with angst and accusations, the lyrics are perfectly conveyed by the brooding music.
MICHAEL SWEET – “Bizarre”
When he’s not fronting ‘80s metal superstars Stryper, collaborating with guitar legend George Lynch, or contributing to any number of other music projects, vocalist Michael Sweet finds the time to put out some amazing solo material. His latest album, One Sided War, is due out later this month, and features guitarist Joel Hoekstra (Whitesnake) and drummer Will Hunt (Evanescence). This thunderous opener sets the pace for what he has called his heaviest solo album yet.
CHRIS HERZEGOVITCH – HRD Music Scout
DYNAZTY – “The Human Paradox”
“The Human Paradox” is the lead track from Dynazty’s fifth studio album, Titanic Mass. Melodic and up-tempo, this track has a great driving rhythm, catchy choruses and a heavy, yet bright, sound. Nils Molin shows off great range and power in his vocals. Excellent work as well from George Egg on drums and bassist Jonathan Olsson, who also split time performing as part of the Paralydium Project.
SOTO – “Weight Of The World”
Jeff Scott Soto leads the band bearing his name on their second album, entitled Divak (pronouced ‘Dee-vok’). With Soto, JSS revisits the heavier side of his career (like his early days with Yngwie Malmsteen). “Weight Of The World” is abundantly heavy, with great vocals complemented by notable contributions from lead guitarist Jorge Salan and drummer Edu Cominato. JSS and Cominato are also the producers of the album.
To be considered for Music Discovery Monday, please e-mail a link to the song being submitted on YouTube and an artist bio to – submissions@MusicDiscoveryMonday.com