MUSIC DISCOVERY MONDAY – 1/15/18
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/Editor, Hard Rock Daddy)
SAINTED SINNERS – “Burnin’ The Candle”
Vocalist David Reece’s biggest claim to fame may be a short stint fronting Accept, but the lead single off of Sainted Sinner’s sophomore release doesn’t make you think of the German metalers. However, listening to “Burnin’ The Candle” does bring to mind some of legends of rock, especially the guitar work of Frank Pané.
The bombastic arena rock intro leads into riff that has a “Girls, Girls, Girls” vibe, but that’s where the Motley Crue comparisons end. Pané’s lead sounds like the lovechild of Eddie Van Halen’s “Eruption” and Randy Rhodes on “Crazy Train” (after a frenetic intro reminiscent of Paul Gilbert on “Addicted To That Rush”). Throughout the song, he also throws in runs that would make Yngwie Malmsteen proud.
What makes this song so entertaining is not the influences of others, or the guitar work alone. Pané is able to shine because of the rock solid rhythm section that is Malte Frederik Burkert (bass) and Berci Hirleman (drums).
While the band is the engine that powers the train, the swagger and soul of Sainted Sinners is the powerful vocals of Reece. The American vocalist has certainly found his groove with Sainted Sinners. Accept may be the biggest line on his resume so far, but if Sainted Sinners gets the attention that they deserve, his time in Accept will become an afterthought.
EMPTY TRAIL – “My World”
The brainchild of singer/guitarist Rick Lambert, who began writing songs in Los Angeles in 2013, Empty Trail is now an Austin, TX based power trio. However, when you listen to “My World” for the first time, you don’t think of either Los Angeles or Austin. The city that comes to mind (in a good way) is Seattle.
One of the reasons that grunge and the “Seattle sound” burned so brightly and faded relatively quickly (in the scheme of things) is because of the lack of quality artists who could hold their own. Too many copycats, not enough innovators. Looking back, most of the bands of that era have been forgotten. They’re nothing more than a footnote in the history of hard rock. However, the best of them are still relevant to this day.
The artists that come to mind most when listening to Empty Trail are Soundgarden, Alice In Chains, and Nirvana. However, their sound has a current vibe that would make it a nice fit on Active Rock radio. Tortured at times, Lambert’s melodic vocals allow just enough light to shine through the darkness. Walking the fine line between depressing and uplifting is not one that many achieve. On “My World,” Lambert has done it. Expect to see more from this band on Hard Rock Daddy going forward.
KEVIN GRAYSON – HRD Music Scout
JUDAS PRIEST – “Lightning Strike”
Heavy metal powerhouse Judas Priest is back with a new song (“Lightning Strike”) off of their upcoming album, Firepower (due out in March). This will be the band’s 18th album, and they are still going strong. Back in 2011, guitarist K.K. Downing retired from the band. He was replaced by Richie Faulkner, who has given the band new fire and a fresh new influence on their music. Rob Halford has stated that Faulkner has done some amazing things on the new album, and that his lead playing is incredible. Judas Priest has sold over 50 million records to date. Firepower should be one more great record to add to every fans’ collection.
MONTE PITTMAN – “Be Very Afraid”
Monte Pittman is a seriously talented singer/songwriter/guitar player that used to give guitar lessons in Los Angeles. He taught British film director Guy Ritchie (who had just gotten a guitar as a gift from his girlfriend, Madonna). Ritchie returned the favor to Madonna, and bought her a guitar. She would get her lessons from Pittman as well. In 2001, Madonna hired Pittman, and he has been with her ever since. In 2009, Pittman launched a solo career. He made two albums under his name (one acoustic and one rock) before making the switch to hard rock and metal on his third album, The Power of Three (hence the name). Pittman signed with Metal Blade Records, and is now totally in touch with his metal side. The song “Be Very Afraid” is off of his current album, Inverted Grasp of Balance.
KURT ARFT – HRD Music Scout
INGLORIOUS – “I Don’t Need Your Loving”
Sometimes simple is better, and with this song by UK-based band Inglorious, this is as simple as they come. A catchy riff with groove, hard pounding, driving drums behind it, and a voice that was sent from the hard rock heavens. “I Don’t Need Your Loving” will get your head bobbing and your feet stomping, much like drummer Phil Beaver does with his heavy-footed bass drum stomp throughout the tune.
Inglorious was formed in February 2014 in London. They’re headed up by frontman Nathan James, who has had stints with Trans-Siberian Orchestra, and Uli Jon Roth (as well appearing on TV reality shows The Voice and Superstar).
The band lineup behind James consists of lead guitarist Andreas Eriksson, rhythm guitarist Drew Lowe, bassist guitar Colin Parkinson, and Beaver on drums. Their sound hails from the classic rock era where players could play, write great songs, and singers could sing. James can definitely do that! He may be one of the most underrated voices in hard rock today, but that won’t last long. Listen to this man’s voice…it will send chills up your spine and make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck.
Inglorious has also done some amazing covers of Deep Purple’s “Burn” and Whitesnake’s “Fool For Your Loving,” reinforcing their ‘70s classic rock roots and influences.
The band’s second album (aptly titled II) has been heavily supported in Europe, and is in rotation on UK digital radio station Planet Rock. They were early supporters of the band and really got the word out about them. Inglorious has toured as support for, most notably, The Winery Dogs, The Dead Daisies, and Steel Panther over in Europe. They have yet to make a trek over to North America, but it will be only a matter of time before they do.
SANTA CRUZ – “Young Blood Rising”
What do you get when you take glam rock bands Skid Row and Motley Crue, and mix them with hard rock/metal bands like Bullet For My Valentine and Children Of Bodom? Santa Cruz! “Young Blood Rising” is an anthem for young rock fan audiences, proclaiming to the world that Santa Cruz is here to stay with their amazingly well-crafted brand of glam/hard rock/metal or, as they call it, “glamcore.”
Santa Cruz was formed in 2007 in Helsinki, Finland by vocalist Archie Kuosmanen and guitarist Johnny Parkkonen. They were then joined by bass player Middy Toivonen, and eventually added drummer Taz Fagerström. They have all adopted the last name of “Cruz” as a symbol of their solidarity and brotherhood.
To date, the band has released three studio albums. “Young Blood Rising” is from Santa Cruz’s latest release, Bad Blood Rising. These kids can play. And I don’t mean the term “kids” to be disrespectful. They are young, full of piss ‘n vinegar, and are hungry.
Although Santa Cruz has been around for a little over a decade, they are just now starting to get traction and the exposure they have worked so hard for. It’s great to see young bands evolve and mature. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for them.
Their journey has taken them all over, mostly their homeland of Finland, but also Norway, Sweden, Russia, and the UK. Beginning in February, the band will be making their first appearance in North America in support of Fozzy. Be sure to check their tour dates and catch them if they come to your area.
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