Hard Rock Music Time Machine – 1/26/17
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.
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)
MUSE – “Uprising” (2009)
Rock and roll has always been about rebellion. Now, more than any time in recent memory, that fighting spirit is needed. As the classic quote from Spider-Man says…“with great power comes great responsibility.” We have entered a period in history where we all have a voice thanks to social media, but that doesn’t mean that those in power won’t continue to try and silence our voices. I’d love to use this forum to take nostalgic trips down memory lane, and the power that music has had on me. However, the power of music goes well beyond happy memories.
Music provides us a way of knowing that others feel (or have felt) just as we do now. Muse may not be the first band that comes to mind when you think of anti-establishment rebellion, but “Uprising” taps into the inner turmoil that makes you want to scream when the powers that be act in a manner that goes against everything that you believe in.
The simple (but powerful) drum beat that carries throughout the song sets the marching tone for a unified force. The music is haunting at times, as are the vocals which cut deep with a mixture of defiance and pain. I’ve always been one to pay attention to the lyrics of a song. These lyrics hit home more than anytime that I’ve heard the song since it came out in 2009. I recommend reading the lyrics as you listen.
GREY HOLIDAY – “Revolution” (2007)
When Grey Holiday’s “Revolution” came to mind to feature on HRMTM, I knew very little about them (aside from the fact that they were a Christian Rock band). Truth be told, this is the only song that I even remembered from the band. After doing some research, I found out that they cite this week’s featured artist (Muse) as one of their influences. The career of this Texas quartet was short-lived, but they left their mark with “Revolution.”
“Revolution” is a thought-provoking anthem of hope for a brighter future even when things seem bleak. The song is about letting your voice be heard, and not giving into the madness. While it has an air of rebellion, it doesn’t feel angry, rather uplifting and motivational, especially in the middle when the song takes a dramatic turn with the heavy gang vocals.
Just as with Muse’s “Uprising,” I recommend paying close attention to the lyrics as you listen to a song from a band that never reached their full potential.
ANDY CHEUNG – HRD Music Scout
EXODUS – “Bonded by Blood” (1985)
One of the greatest thrash metal bands (and founders of the genre) was the Bay Area’s Exodus. This album is often coined as one of the most influential thrash metal albums of all-time, and helped shape the genre for years to come. Featuring Gary Holt on guitar (now with Slayer) and original guitarist Kirk Hammett (Metallica), “Bonded by Blood” – the title track off of the band’s 1985 release – is pure thrash metal. In fact, every song on the album boasts signature heavy riffs, blazing guitar solos and fast tempos. How I wish that music nowadays was this innovative.
D.R.I. – “Acid Rain” (1992)
Bands that stand out always have a particular tone and style to their songs. Houston’s D.R.I. has always had a unique sound – from Spike Cassidy’s crunchy, heavy guitar sound to Kurt Brecht’s trademark vocals. One of the premier crossover bands of the ‘80s and early ‘90s, D.R.I. appealed to fans of both the hardcore punk genre and the thrash metal genre. Their music was political, nihilistic and anti-authoritarian. It grooved in such a way that it would be difficult not to move at one of their shows (thus the formation of the band’s logo). I hear that they have re-formed and are touring again. Even though I am sure their music will cause me to move just as much as it did 30 years ago, I’ll leave the moshing to the younger generation this time around.
ROB DELL’AQUILA – HRD Music Scout
ANGRA – “Carry On” (1993)
In 1991, three Brazilian music students formed the band Angra. Just two years later, they would alter the metal landscape with their first album, Angels Cry. Other bands (Dream Theater, Blind Guardian) were experimenting already with the interplay between elements of classical music and metal, but it was this newcomer that brought that fusion full throttle on their debut. The vision for this template came largely from vocalist/keyboardist Andre Matos, who hits some high notes on this rollicking number. Matos has since moved on to a solo career, but the band continues to put out quality power and progressive metal with new front man Fabio Lione.
NIGHTWISH – “Ever Dream” (2002)
Finland’s Nightwish combines sweeping symphonies with blazing guitars and pounding rhythms. This one comes from their fourth album, Century Child, and features the operatic vocals of the band’s original lead singer, Tarja Turunen.