Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 9/8/16
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)
METALLICA – “Don’t Tread On Me” (1991)
James Hetfield describes “Don’t Tread On Me” as one of those “don’t-fuck-with-us” songs, and that it was a reaction to the anti-American tone of their album And Justice For All. With the 15th anniversary of 9/11 happening this weekend, it seemed like an appropriate time to share this defiant, patriotism-inspiring anthem.
There is no arguing that 9/11 was, and always will be, one of the worst moments in American history. For those of us who experienced it in an up-close-and-personal way (as I did), it is a day that will be forever emblazoned in our minds. The only silver lining to come from 9/11 were the feelings of unity and patriotism that blanketed America in the days and weeks following the attack. Who’d have thought that 15 years later we would be more divided than ever? We’d all be better off if everyone cranked up “Don’t Tread On Me” and thought long and hard about the things that unite us, rather than focusing our collective energy on the things that divide us.
SHINEDOWN – “Enemies” (2012)
One of the things that united us post-9/11 was the common enemy that we all shared. Through all of the shock and pain, there was something comforting in unifying against a defined enemy. If only things were that simple today.
When I listened to “Enemies” back in 2012, the song had an entirely different meaning. I was able to appreciate the channeled rage aimed toward any enemy. Listening to it today, the lyrics seem to be more descriptive of the overall animus that exists between people on the opposite sides of the political spectrum, in what is the most divisive presidential election in recent U.S. history. Friends and family members alike have strained relations as this election tears at the fabric of our society.
Back in 2001, when we all shared the same enemies, I never could have imagined that politicians would one day turn us against each other. A sign of the times, I suppose.
ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout
STRAPPING YOUNG LAD – “Love?” (2005)
One of the heaviest bands that I’ve ever encountered is Canada’s Strapping Young Lad – formed by Devin Townsend (who appeared on Steve Vai’s album, Sex & Religion). “Love?” is a single from the band’s second album (Alien), and features one of my favorite drummers in Gene Hoglan. The song is sheer brutal heaviness, incorporating death metal, progressive metal and thrash. Along with Townsend’s trademark growls and screams, Hoglan’s heavy drumming, and an awesome tribute video to Evil Dead, “Love?” is a metal classic not known by many.
STORMTROOPERS OF DEATH – “March Of The S.O.D.” (1985)
Another one of the heaviest bands that I listened to back in the high school days was S.O.D. One of the first supergroups, S.O.D. consisted of Scott Ian and Charlie Benante from Anthrax, Billy Milano from M.O.D. and Dan Lilker from Nuclear Assault. This memorable instrumental – with a heavy, catchy riff – would make anyone get up and move (evident in the video). The band only recorded two albums together (Speak English or Die and Bigger Than the Devil). “March of the S.O.D.” is THE song that makes me reminisce about high school.
ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout
SILENT FORCE – “Circle Of Trust” (2013)
In 1999, guitar prodigy Alex Beyrodt (Primal Fear, Voodoo Circle, Sinner) teamed with vocalist DC Cooper (Royal Hunt) to form the melodic metal band Silent Force. They put out four great albums before taking an extended break. In 2013, Beyrodt re-formed the band with a new lineup, including vocalist Michael Bormann (Jaded Heart, Redrum, Zeno). This call to loyalty is from that comeback album, Rising From The Ashes.
AXENSTAR – “Until Your Dying Breath” (2011)
Swedish power metal band Axenstar released this song on their 2011 album, Aftermath. Stretches of melancholy are buoyed by chugging guitars and a relentless rhythm. The powerful vocals of Magnus Winterwild project over the frenzy.
CHRIS HERZEGOVITCH – HRD Music Scout
TALAS – “Sink Your Teeth Into That” (1982)
The great Billy Sheehan’s first band was Bufflao, NY-based Talas, a power trio formed with Dave Constantino on guitar and Paul Varga on drums. “Sink Your Teeth Into That” is the title track from their second release back in 1982. It’s good ol’ fashioned hard rock with a standout guitar lead and memorable chorus.
EDGUY – “Save Me” (2009)
Germany’s Edguy has been belting out power metal since the early ‘90s, when the band was formed by 14 year-old student Tobias Sammet, Jens Ludwig, Dominik Storch and Dirk Sauer. Edguy is an epithet for the band’s high school math teacher. “Save Me” is a terrific, hopeful, power ballad that was originally featured on the band’s 2006 release, Rocket Ride. In this live version of the song, Sammet shows what a skilled frontman he is as he rallies the crowd during the choruses. This version is featured on the band’s 2009 live album, Fucking With Fire (recorded in Sao Paolo, Brazil).