Up From The Ashes – Don Dokken

I really do just like some classic cock-rock. And this I think is classic cock-rock. I don’t know anything about the history of Dokken and Don Dokken, it’s mid to late 80s stuff and all information about rock bands came from magazines in those days. I didn’t really care for that stuff. Does it matter who leaves what band and who fought whom? I guess it’s a bit like a soap opera if you are really into that stuff but I don’t think I was really bothered by it. When Izzy left G ‘n’ R it was more a understanding of “yes that makes sense” than OMG G ‘n’R are breaking up. Bruce left Iron Maiden and I wasn’t fussed and so on.

Sometimes I wonder why people give up on a thing that clearly makes them plenty of money. If I had an acting job that meant loads of money but it was shit TV then part of me would want to keep doing that job. However, the motivation of money is much higher in my personal priorities having grown up with not much of it and as an adult choosing a career where the financial rewards aren’t great [even diminished under the tories]. Ah, now I see my motivation – I chose a career path that I find fascinating and fun and the lack of money is just a side product which I cope with – hence other people choosing to leave their success and seek fulfilment. Good on them.

I don’t think Dokken were ever megastars with the ability to retire whenever they want. One of their songs was used for a film soundtrack and that’s about the limit of their fame and fortune. Their favourite album of mine was recorded in Japan and as a previous headteacher of mine said to me once regarding his own music success in Japan – they buy any old shit over there. So as I write this the songs are playing and they are broadly speaking very well constructed rock songs with reasonable riffs and verses that are a little too ballad for my tastes now. I don’t really like songs which slow down. The verse should be upbeat and then the chorus should be even more so. It’s an 80s thing to have ballad shit in songs and keep repeating it. I don’t think I’ve ever really liked it.

Some song highlights are:

  • When Some Nights – I like the guitar and bass combo in this one. It’s the fist song with some life in the album.
  • Give It Up – good bass sound. Good quality sing along song.
  • Down In Flames – interesting opening with mechanical voice.
  • The Hunger – opening drums – amazing, riff – amazing. Balled verse – shit.

Comms #1991, so here are some things from that year:

  • I was working at Raytheon/Cossors and almost considered joining the air force if the Gulf War became “bad” whatever that means.
  • I started university and met some great people.
  • Dissolution of the Soviet Union.
  • The Moby Prince sinks killing 140 people.

United Abominations – Megadeth

Here’s the thing with Megadeth; since they gave up drugs and became all christian they’ve kinda gone a bit shit. I understand the reasons for coming off drugs, that makes loads of sense, I’m not sure I understand the christian part because doesn’t that mean that god made them an addict in the first place and he’s a fucking asshole? I do know that twelve step programmes might not work that well and one of the steps is to surrender yourself to a higher power. Fuck that shit. In Scandinavia they have a programme that doesn’t depend on abstinence and that works better I suspect. Anyway, it’s a complicated picture and not one that I’m going to do justice to in this here little blog.

This album is not on my iPhone. I think that says it all really. While it’s in my collection and on the NAS drive in the house I won’t listen to it anywhere else. To be perfectly honest if I want some Megadeth in the house I wouldn’t even put this album on. I think there’s only so much twiddly thrash metal you can have in your head at one time before all the songs start to sound the same [I will admit that typing that just made me sick]. The Megadeth albums on my phone are:

  • Killing is my business . . . And business is good.
  • Peace sells . . . But Who’s Buying.
  • So Far So Good . . . So What.
  • Rust In Peace.
  • That One Night – Live In Buenos Aires.

So, there. You now know what I think of this album.

This is communication number 1989 and as has become a recent tradition these are some things, curated by me, that happened in that year.

  • 47 died in the Kegworth air disaster.
  • Union Carbide agree to pay the Indian government 470million for causing the deaths of 3,700 in the Bhopal disaster of 1984. [$127,000 per human life in case you wondered].
  • 97 people die in the Hillsborough disaster.
  • 51 people die in the Marchioness disaster.
  • 11 die in bomb attack at Deal Barracks, Kent.

Unholy Terror – W.A.S.P.

I had this album playing while I was flying X-Plane yesterday. I had thought that I might recognise some of the songs, but I did not. It could be that yesterday was the first time I actually played this album. W.A.S.P. are a comically larger than life band who sought out the controversy and I’m hoping to see them soon. But this album left me unfazed. Just go listen to Live . . . In The Raw.

This is communication number 1988 and it’s quite exciting writing and finding these little happenings each year as we enter a period of time when I was quite aware of the world and the goings on therein. I was sixteen in this year. ATC summer camp was at RAF Coningsby, I took my GCSEs, it was the very first year of those examinations.

  • 3 members of the IRA are shot dead by SAS in Gibraltar.
  • 167 die in the Piper Alpha oil platform explosion.
  • 75 people are killed in an airshow accident at Ramstein.
  • Total one million dead as Iran Iraq war ends.
  • F-117 acknowledged as existing and first B-2 is revealed.
  • Pan Am flight 103 is blown up over Scotland, the debris lands on town of Lockerbie.

Undaunted – Mordecai

I saw this band live at Download 2013. They were in a smaller tent and Smith and I just went there out of curiosity. They were not terrible. It was perfectly good rock/metal music. So, I bought their album.

I’m not sure there’s anything special about the album. There’s not really anything that stands out enough to say that this band should be massive. But, that might be the crux. The whole album is crafted really well. There aren’t any shit songs and it all works pretty well. It’s a pretty good choice when I want to listen to rock but nothing superstar.

This is communication number 1987 and as with recent traditions I have been adding a few things that happened in that particular year in the current calendar system. Having typed this I’ve remembered I didn’t do it for my previous communication so I’ll head back that way and adjust it shortly.

  • The Archbishop of Canterbury had sent an envoy to the middle east to try and help but Terry Waite was kidnapped and not released until 1991.
  • 193 people die in the Herald Of Free Enterprise ferry disaster at Zeebrugge.
  • 16 people are killed in a massacre in Hungerford, UK.
  • Mathias Rust lands a small light plane in Red Square Moscow.

Ultra Payloaded – Satellite Party

I think I got to hear about this album from a television show I watched in Australia, something like that. It’s a side project of the singer for Jane’s Addiction and as such, this is an OK album. I enjoy the songs when they pop up on a shuffle but I don’t think it’s an album I would normally reach for unless it’s summer time and maybe I’m outside in the garden, it’s got that kind of feel to it.

This is the first of the “U” albums and it’s a quite exclusive club. Definitely not as many as “T”, thank goodness. We’ll be at the end of the list soon I guess unless the “W”s have a surprise for us.

This should be communication number 1973 because all the other communications before this one have been building up to number 2000. That’s why I started added year-information-stuff. But now there’s a controversy. WordPress thinks this is number 1972 and not 1973 and I really am unsure why.

I get a “posts” count at the top of my WordPress page and have been using that to figure out the particular comms# but systems have gone wrong somehow. Now I don’t want to repeat a load of information and maybe I should make the content dynamic somehow but I’m going to stick with the system I have been using and hope WordPress catches up with me soon. Maybe this is my “millennium bug”.

Here are some things that happened in 1973:

  • The UK joins the EEC, fore-runner of the EU.
  • US dollar is devalued by 10%.
  • Dark Side Of The Moon is released.
  • Tu-144 crashes.
  • Sydney Opera house is formally opened.

Tummy – Wat Tyler

Gosh, it has taken a while to get to this point but this is the last of the “T” albums. Once I complete all the albums alphabetically it’ll be time to go back to the beginning and start reviewing all the EBM, aggrotech, albums that I have. Sorry about that but I don’t think there is an end to this portion of this site. If you think these are boring just wait for my list of airports I have used in the Round The World Trip in X-Plane!!

I saw Wat Tyler at a gig in the Square in Harlow way back when I had more hair than now. They were funny and I bought this CD at the merch table. This album is the perfect mix of well written songs and joke songs which make me laugh. I love it.

Here are some of the highlights:

  • Justify Your Book – is it just me or is the singer’s voice remarkably sexy here?
  • It Makes Me Belch – heavy riff and shouty vocals with a great hook into the chorus.
  • Hops And Barley – such an amazing wholesome song.
  • Coming Home – a lovely sea shanty from before sea shanties being popular.
  • Perry Groves – apparently a song about soccer.
  • The Definitive Love Song – a bit of a Freebird rip off with spoken lyrics to make you laugh.
  • Dodgepotterydo – a song with the lyrics of Rolf Harris songs sung to the tune of “Stairway To Heaven”.
  • James Whale – sung to the tune of “I just called to say I love you” but with a chorus of “James Whale you’re a fucking cunt, you’re a fucking cunt”. If you aren’t sure who James Whale is then think Piers Morgan but slightly less offensive.
  • Ruder Girl – If I can find the lyrics I will put them at the end of this communication.
  • God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen – you will love this.
  • Wet Wet Wet (The Fucking Bed) – hilarious.
  • The Little People Make Lurve – a classic operatic story of elves and dwarves and shit.

Gosh, we’ve reached the 1970s in terms of communications and here are some things that happened that year:

  • Unix time epoch.
  • The USA invades Cambodia.
  • Tu-144 exceeds Mach 2.
  • Stonewall Riot.

Troublegum – Therapy?

Opening lines:

“I’m gonna get drunk, Come round and fuck you up
I’m gonna get drunk, Come round and fuck you up”

This album has the speed and power of a classic punk album but with a little more subtlety. The melodies are great and I do enjoy playing this. While I might not know what the songs are called when they are played I definitely know the songs and this album gets played or at least not-skipped when it comes up in a shuffle. Heavy riffs with disturbing lyrics, you can’t get better than that I guess. This is well worth getting.

The song Nowhere is super single material, very well crafted.

This is communication number 1967 and curating events that happened in certain years seemed a good idea at the time but I do find it irritating now. But, I want to get to the point where I am making up shit for the future, that’s my dream, that’s my nightmare. These shitty few pages are going to make me the Nostradamus of the future, I best get good at being vague as shit.

  • Apollo 1 fire.
  • North Sea Gas starts pumping.
  • China tests its first H-Bomb.
  • First cash machine in world.
  • Race Riots in USA.

TRON: Legacy – Daft Punk

I got this because I quite liked the music in the film Tron: Legacy. Also because I’m aware of Daft Punk and don’t really mind their stuff. I haven’t played it that often and so pretty much I have no views on this album.

This is communication number 1966 and here are some things that happened that year:

  • SR-71 goes into service.
  • Plenty of racism in USA. Also evident in UK but less noticed.
  • A B-52 crashes and drops three hydrogen bombs on Spain. They don’t go off.
  • Hovercraft service starts across the Channel.
  • An XB-70 crashes.
  • Aberfan disaster where 144 are killed.

Trial By Fire: Live In Leningrad – Yngwie Malmsteen

I bought this album on music cassette form in Saffron Walden in the run up to some Christmas sometime. I knew of Yngwie Malmsteen as he was kind of infamous in my sixth form. A number of people had seen him in concert and so I got this. I think he was the first super-speedy, how does he do that, kind of guitarists I had heard about. There are plenty more but there’s a certain melody to his playing. I have and continue to listen to this album regularly.

Now, here’s the thing. When I played this album a while ago I was trying to come up with ways to describe the differences in the songs. You, know , to be able to do a track listing and description of each. Now, the rub is, they all sound quite similar. Same pace, beat, style. I don’t mean to diminish how good this album is because I really do enjoy it. I like every song. If I had to choose a favourite then I would go for “Heaven Tonight”, it’s a lovely romantic song.

All I can say is that Yngwie can play very well. I enjoy this stuff. He was pretty good when I saw him in Shepherds Bush however many years ago.

Comms#1963 so here are some things that happened that year as curated by me:

  • George Wallace becomes Alabama Governor, what a cunt.
  • Valentina Tereshkova is first woman in space.
  • Kenya gains independence from the UK.
  • Sam Cooke and his band are arrested after trying to register at a “whites only” motel in Louisiana.

Tres Hombres – ZZ Top

I have played this album precisely three times in its entity. I was given this by Shredder as a recommended thing to listen to. He was not wrong. I have played this album when I drove some pupils to Canterbury for a school visit – you want something you think most people will appreciate when driving others around. I have so much obnoxious music that it’s hard sometimes to find something suitable. I played this album over my Sonos system when building a climbing frame for the kids and then finally I played it the other day in preparation for this communication.

This is a brilliant album full of dirty, gritty, blues inspired songs that all sound great. It has a real down low feel to it whilst not being obnoxious. I do like it. I think it’s an album I will go for more often when I need something decent in the background.

This album is not anything like you would expect if all you know about ZZ Top is their songs from the eighties. It’s actually way better and I even like their rock stuff.

This is communication number 1957 so here are some things that happened then in the year of our lord:

  • The first frisbee
  • A hydrogen bomb accidentally falls from a bomber near Albuquerque.
  • A hurricane killed 400 people in Louisiana.
  • The Wolfenden Report was published in the UK recommending the legalisation of gay sex between consenting adults.
  • Gordon Gould invents the LASER.