Judgement Night – Various Artists

This perfectly amazing album is what happens when a music label crosses over its artists. I will write about this album as if the second song had never appeared on it as I think it’s a travesty. Here’s what you need to know:

“Just Another Victim” by Helmet and House Of Pain: an excellent opener giving you a taste of what’s coming. The grinding opening riff rips your brain out. The pace change half way through bounces your grey cells once more. Brilliant.

“Me, myself & my microphone” by Run DMC and Living Colour: ringing chords leading to heavy riffs and a hiphop beat. Heavy crashing sounds.

“Judgement Night” by Biohazard and Onyx: Yeah, motherfucker. A bouncy beat with squealy guitar sounds throughout. A bonkers song.

“Disorder” by Slayer and Ice-T: Sorry Ice-T but Tom Araya smashes your scream, he takes it, rolls it up into a small box and disintegrates it to a million pieces. We don’t need your war. A rolling beat with classic Slayer riff and solo until halfway. Hold on to your hats because this song knocks you off your feet. It hits you the way the LA riots hit LA.

“Another Body Murdered” by Faith No More and Boo Ya T.R.I.B.E. A classic Faith No More start to this song with pumping rap lyrics and the gentle piano in the background. The screams part way through are horror-movie standard.

“I Love You Mary Jane” by Cypress Hill and Sonic Youth: this is one chilled out song. A slow rolling beat with the distinct vocal style of Cypress Hill. This works. It’s relaxed. It’s strange and smooth.

“Freak Momma” by Mudhone and Sir Mix-A-Lot: I know little of Mudhone but what I do know is this song is in their distinctive style. The beat catches up with itself at times and tries to overtake in your head. Almost a summer garden song.

“Missing Link” by  Dinosaur Jr. and Del the Funky Homosapien: a groovy bass line with rapping and a singing lead guitar. Another chilled out song. Something to relax to.

“Come and Die” by Therapy? and Fatal: imagine you’ve got zombies chasing you around the neighbourhood. You are jogging away, hoping you don’t turn a corner and get caught by a separate hoard. That’s the pace and feel of this song. It’s also the music that should be playing in the movie where you are running from zombies. It’s a meta song.

“Real Thing” by Pearl Jam and Cypress Hill: want to bounce your head, nodding with the beat while walking or chilling in your sofa in the garden. Well, get the wickerwear out, put the cushions on and lay back and relax. Hold a finger in the air and direct the music from your slouch. Feel the beat take you.

The song I’ve not mentioned is “Fallin'” because it’s shit.

This entire album was the soundtrack to a chunk of my time at university. It was amazing and still is. It has that raw powerful sound of anger and sadness. I feel like we haven’t moved on. Society is still suffering and these songs and artists could easily make all this again.

At its time this was an amazing album, a collaboration of artists of metal and rap who weren’t Aerosmith. This crossover is brilliant. I love it. I really love it.

These Will Probably Get Removed

After such a busy week spending time visiting cool stuff around East Anglia, I had to spend a few more hours at work because I was playing in the band. Disaster Area has been going a while and we normally open the Rock Evenings. Last Friday was no exception although normally we have been practising the songs for a few months rather than the two run throughs we managed an hour before the show.

We opened with Crazy Train.

And continued with Learn To Fly. There will probably be official videos somewhere on Faceshit.

Disaster Area Gig 20 March 2015

So, here’re some photos from the Disaster Area gig on the 20 March. Our set list, although small, was perfectly formed.

  • Detroit Rock City
  • Symphony of Destruction

The quality of these photos is terrible, mainly because they’ve come from the Disaster Area Facebook page. If you really want to see more head over to that stuff. As I’ve explained before: I don’t do Facebook.


I travelled to the big smoke last night to see Therapy? play at the Scala near Kings Cross. The journey out was good, the trains were on time and the sun was out. London looked gorgeous. While I waited for Smith to turn up I sat and watched the world go by. I’m sure I remember more nutters hanging around train stations when I was younger!

The venue was good. It was smaller than I expected but there were plenty of balconies and raised areas where a good view of the band could be found. We waited in the middle of the pit.

The first band on were called Only The Brave. It was guitar based music and not my stuff. I was wondering what it was about the music that I didn’t like and finally Andy told me it was Indie Wank. I suddenly understood why it did noting for me! For the last few songs I spent the time browsing various news sites and apps on my phone. I was glad to get 4G service inside the venue.


These were a funny band. The singer looked as though he had personality issues and spent his time staring at the side of the stage [which doesn’t really matter as long as he can sing], the RH guitarist never looked up, the bassist seemed worried about stuff and the frontman was too happy. All their songs sounded the same and rubbish [sorry, not my stuff].

Therapy?, by contrast, were an active band who looked at the crowd and actually seemed to enjoy what they were doing. It is twenty years since the release of the Troublegum album and they played it in its entirety. It’s a very good album and the show was dynamic. The crowd were jumping and I sweated loads in the middle of the pit. Smith had someone try to steal his mobile phone a few times and so he was disappointed with some members of the crowd. I had noticed around three people looking for their phones on the floor. I can’t imagine that you would put a phone somewhere where it would fall out so maybe their phones were stolen?

The sound was good and I really enjoyed the show. I stayed in the pit for around 3/4 of the set and then spent the last few songs watching from the edge of the pit. I will confirm to @trusmoov that it was a “normal” pit.


The real excitement of the evening was waiting for me at the train station. Smith and I wandered to Kings Cross and said our farewells. Then I headed to the correct platforms in St Pancras. There was a queue of people nearside of the barriers all talking to the railway people. I glanced a the departures board and saw that the 20 past was about to leave. I was wrong. It was the 2220 train and the time now was 2318. There were delays.

Apparently some kids had entered a tunnel near to Stratford station and so we were waiting for the police to make sure that the route was clear. I boarded the train and found a seat. I was feeling a little tired and tried to read a book on the Kindle app. There were announcements about how we could head to Victoria or London Bridge to get trains from there, but a quick check of the app on my phone told me that there were no other departures to Ebbsfleet, where my car was parked. I was stuck waiting for the fast train to leave.

At about 0130 we had the announcement that we would be departing soon. I arrived at Ebbsfleet at around 0150 and was home by 0215. I guess the journey could have been a lot worse but I was tired. I didn’t care. I was just glad to be home.

Rock Identity

For practically all my life I have been a fan of heavy metal. See this communication about my descent into metal.

For me the 80s were filled with early flirtations with pop, from Madonna to Frankie Goes To Hollywood and then into Heavy Metal and Rock. I love Iron Maiden and AD/DC following on from Bon Jovi and Def Leppard in 1987. Come the very late 80s and early 90s I descend into thrash with Megadeth, Metallica, Slayer and Anthrax. I see these bands regularly along with new British metal bands such as Wolfsbane and The Almighty.

During university I don’t really expand my musical tastes a great deal. My major discovery (via Smith) is Senser and their cross-over political rock and rap. This sustains me for a few more years along with Alice In Chains.

My music buying diminishes as I start my career and I don’t really get into new bands for a few years. I don’t have a network of friends who can inform me of new things and I don’t live in London. I spend a number of years sustaining myself on the stuff I already own. I still see bands like Iron Maiden and Slayer when they come along, but nothing small or new.

In the early 2000s someone gives me her Rammstein CDs (Sara T) and I find the sound fascinating and new. It’s exciting. Along with seeing Slipknot perform on the TFI Friday television programme I have found something new. Something a little scary and something that seems dangerous. All the music I have grown up with seems rather tame in comparison to these new sounds. I played them over and over. Until around 2009 not much happened until Smith returned from abroad and he and I started attending gigs and concerts together again.

In 2009 I saw two bands. AC/DC at Wembley Stadium and I loved it. They were brilliant and I their music has brought me so much pleasure over the years [so much so that I wore out my musical cassette version of “If You Want Blood, You’ve Got It”]. The other band I saw that year was Rammstein. Their stage show is just absolutely brilliant. If you don’t believe me then just search YouTube for “Buch Dich”, it is quite brilliant, a little bit dangerous and something to cause moral outrage amongst the leading classes. The support band for Rammstein was Combichrist and that is when the trouble started.

After hearing Combichrist and being impressed with their sound I ordered a CD.

Today We Are All Demons

This music was exciting, different, morally dubious, scary and just damn brilliant. It made me want to dance (something I just don’t do). The big problem was that there were NO GUITARS and it was all SAMPLES and DRUM MACHINES. For someone who likes his music live and reproducible without machines this caused major issues. Why did I like this? Was I going insane? How can I like music with a complete lack of heavy guitars and bursting riffs? I was at the tip of the mountain staring down a great big slippery slope to the valley of “not real” music [as far as my metal head would tell you].

I bought more Combichrist stuff and started to look at their influences and associated acts. I bought more. Bands like:

  • Aesthetic Perfection
  • Reaper
  • Suicide Commando
  • Funker Vogt
  • Hex-Rx
  • Panzer AG

Pretty much all of this is what I would now call EBM, Aggrotech or Hellektro. These names are good because it means I am back on the edge of society and seeking to be different with my music. When Metallica took the world by storm in 1992 or so I was done with them. Their sound had changed and I didn’t like it any more. The “edge” had gone. This new music I had found has an edge. It makes me feel uncomfortable [sometimes] and it is different.

I have tried to describe it to friends and I say:

It’s heavy metal without any guitars. The lyrics are nasty and the tunes are awesome.


It’s kinda dance music but without the nice lyrics and happy stuff.

I have leant this stuff to friends who like the same sort of metal as me and they don’t really get on with it. They apologised and handed back the USB stick. That’s fine by me because it means I can carry on feeling “on the edge” and liking the music. This stuff ain’t ever going to be mainstream. It sometimes sounds like it should be playing in a night club on a Saturday night but then I have no idea what sort of stuff these people would play. I’d love to be in a club and hear this stuff come on and the crowd just freak out because it hurts them.

I am struggling to come to terms with my new found musical taste. It irks me that I’ve gone for samples and drum machines. I’ve been to see these people play. I’ve liked their music. I’ve had a great time. Yet still the 18 year old me is somewhat miffed at this odd turn in my ear pleasures. As an extreme I have seen a “band” with three Apple Macs on stage and a few leads and then they danced around pressing the odd key here and there. I loved it. There’s a tiny part of me that isn’t sure it’s music but I like it anyway. Over time I’m sure I’ll heal this mental riff. Much like I’ve got used to being a university snob when at the age of 17 I hated that person!

If you want to try this stuff then have a look for the following tracks:

  • 190 – Reaper
  • X-Junkie – Reaper
  • Hit The Streets – Aesthetic Perfection
  • In The Pit – Combichrist
  • God Bless – Combichrist
  • Tip The Dancer – Panzer AG

I am now listening to more industrial stuff. The following bands are on my current active list:

  • Faderhead
  • Eisbecher
  • Rotersand
  • Front 242
  • VNV Nation

My metal taste buds are still there. I watched Mentallica last night. I went to Download last year. I’m going to see Therapy? and FFDP soon. However, this Hellektro is here to stay and just wonderfully stunning: suck on that 18 year old me!

Alt-Fest [1]

This is my first communication about a music festival in 2014 that I am going to attend. In 2013 I went to the Download festival at Donington Circuit, see here for more information.

So, the basic story:

There’s a pretty good “gig” app on the iPhone called Songkick. It scanned my music library and then lets me know when bands I like are going to tour the UK (and other places) and generally keeps me informed, avoiding the need for me to regularly scan magazines or the web for information.

The phone beeped one day and Aesthetic Perfection had announced they were playing in February. I immediately got in touch with my gig-buddy and he said that he thought he was busy on the London date. After checking it turns out it is his wedding anniversary and so we agreed to pass that particular concert. I had thought about going by myself, when he asked if AP were playing anywhere else in the year. Looking through the app it turns out that they are playing something called Alt-Fest [this was a web link but the site is dead]..

A bit more digging and the line-up looked very interesting and the tickets were very reasonably priced. Andy said he thought he was in Italy during that time. After checking his diary and plans it turns out that Andy is indeed in Italy. I held off buying tickets for a while, thinking it would be unfair to go without him, and he thought about changing his flights.

One Friday morning I caved in and bought a couple of tickets and booked a hotel in Kettering. I’m not going to camp at a festival however lovely all the people there are. I like the idea of electricity and a warm shower and proper toilet.

So, next year I am going to Alt-Fest, which as far as I can gather is a crowd funded festival, they campaigned on Kickstarter and have gone from there. The only problem with that is it will become mainstream after just one season and will have to cope with all the commercial interests of all festival promoters. I hope they do well. There are going to be 50,000 people there and the acts look awesome.

Bands I’m looking forward to seeing:

  • Killing Joke
  • Senser
  • Aesthetic Perfection
  • Marylin Manson
  • Gary Numan
  • Blut Engel
  • Fuckshovel
  • Onslaught
  • Cradle of Filth
  • SAM
  • Suicide Commando
  • Concrete Lung

It is going to be good fun.

Crunch – Impellitteri

In about 1990 I was given a music cassette with “Stand In Line” by Impellitteri. I was stunned. It’s a brilliant album with some seriously cracking songs and heavy riffs. Fast forward 15 years and I noticed that there was a double album deal on Amazon for some Impellitteri stuff. I bought it.

This is very much speed metal in the vain of Yngwie or Gamma Ray. My concerns were raised after playing the album through a few times. Let me show you the titles:

  • Beware of the Devil
  • Slay the Dragon
  • Fear No Evil
  • Speed Demon

My curiosity was piqued and I did a little Wikipedia-ing. This is what they say there:

Chris and I and Ken Mary are all Christians, but James and Ed and Glen, our touring drummer, don’t necessarily proclaim themselves as Christians, so it’s not a Christian band.

The themes of the songs are religious. I would say they are a Christian band.
Does this affect what I think of the music? Yes.
Should it? Probably not, but then I think that religion is immoral and particularly offensive and serves no place in the modern world.
Do I still listen now and then? Yes, I quite like the style, it’s worth a play now and then.
I still think that “Stand In Line” is stunning.

Cross Road – Bon Jovi

I bought/downloaded/borrowed this originally because I wanted some Bon Jovi on my phone but didn’t want to buy the original albums. I sometimes go for “Best Of” albums because you are meant to get the best of that artist. I don’t think it always works out like that though. It appears that there are restrictions on the songs put on these “Best Of” albums. Also, some albums work as albums and you should listen through the whole thing.

So, I have since bought the albums I like and so only have a few songs left in this. The six songs left are:

  • Someday I’ll be Saturday night
  • Blaze of Glory
  • Prayer ’94
  • In and Out of Love
  • Runaway
  • I’ll Be There For You (version 2)

I’m not sure why I still have the last song there. I find both versions really tedious. When I saw the Jovi at Twickenham I just wanted “I’ll Be There For You” to stop. I also hate key changes. Look, get the original albums. There’s a reason the Jovi are as big as they are, it’s good stuff.

Crazy World – Scorpions

Old dog, old tricks.

I bought this album on music cassette in the late 80s, I’m ashamed to say it but it was probably not long after “Winds of Change” was in the charts. A good ballad is always an indication of a good band as long you then forget the ballad (they annoy me).

This album is a stunner. It’s exactly the sort of music I like. There’re songs with gang vocals, guitar slides, cheeky riffs, excellent bass work, it’s as though the Scorpions know exactly what sort of music works well in an arena. Given how long the “boys” have been around it’s no surprise that this album is well-crafted and wonderful.

I like all the songs. It’s precisely the sort of album that, when in the correct mood, you can play in its entirety.


  • Tease Me Please Me
  • Don’t Believe Her
  • Restless Nights