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Archive: Columns

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The Rockstar Ramblings: Size Does Matter

As we stumble upon the summer tour season we constantly hear the phrase “big” tour. Whether it is in reference to the number of bands playing, number of asses in the seats, or size of the stage show, a lot of bands claim to own the “big show” title.

Bands like Van Halen, Guns N’ Roses, and Aerosmith (among others) for years have touted their tours in this regard and all (to some degree) have a right to throw their hat in the circle. This year is no exception: Kiss is following up a new album with what they are calling their biggest show ever, Metallica is again filling arenas on the road, and festivals drawing many bands are still going strong. Does tour “size” need to be qualified? Probably not, but what the hell….I personally haven’t given much thought to this until this week when I read the following: As AC/DC prepares for their Australian tour there is word that they will need forty-eight semi trailers to haul their equipment. Forty-eight trailers? I’ll let that one hang there for a minute… More...

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Tales From The Pit: Gwar Defeats A Wall of Death

We've been talking to bands to hear their best pit stories and will be posting a new story every week in this new column dubbed "Tales From The Pit."

This week, we've got a tale from Oderus Urungus, lead singer of GWAR:

"The greatest pit war at any GWAR show was at one of our first gigs at the legendary "City (shitty) Gardens" venue in Trenton. N.J.. We were pretty unknown at the time, but the promoter loved us, so we would show up on any number of weird bills. One month we were opening for Danzig's first show without the Misfits, the next we were playing with Murphy's Law at a huge skinhead show. That's where it happened. Despite Jimmy Gestapo's love of GWAR, the local crew didn't quite know what to make of us, and decided to see what we were made of by forming 'the wall of death.' We looked up about halfway though the set and saw the mosh pit clear, to be replaced by a huge line of bellicose skinheads, linking arms, facing the stage, and preparing to charge. We only had seconds to act as the screaming mob rushed us. The assault wasn't too well-planned and slammed into the front on the five foot stage where it dissolved into a writhing mass of boots, fists, and bald heads. Before they could figure out what to do next (could have taken years), they were met by a barrage of GWAR spew, applied liberally by the Sexecutioner, which completely drenched and befuddled them, rendering their "Wall of Death" into an impotent blob."

Stay tuned for a new tale from the pit next week, when we hear from Jono Garret, drummer for The Destro.

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The Rockstar Ramblings: American Idol Edition

Well, I think this makes it official. Velvet Revolver is unable to find a new lead singer. What else could possibly explain Slash appearing on the Fox family hour better known as American Idol? More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Reunion Recap

Riki Rachtman again hosted the Rock of Love tour reunion. After introducing each of the girls (even the ones eliminated after one episode) he says, “and Big John”, as if was the opening credits of Cheers with “and George Wendt as Norm”. After introducing Bret, Riki gives him a big hug and whispers, “Thanks for the gig man”. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Season Finale Recap

Bret takes the final two girls, Taya and Mindy, to the Dominican Republic where he will spend time with each girl and make his final decision. Michaels sits the girls down and explains in air quotes they are going to take a “private jet” to the “Dominican Republic” as if that is not where they are really going to go. They take a private jet to the Dominican Republic. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 11 Recap

Mindy, Taya, and Jamie, the most boring girls from this season, just happen to be the last three. This group is so dull that heading to Miami (the next stop) doesn’t even sound fun, and Miami is always fun. More...

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Osbournes Reloaded Recap Episode 1

There are two dogs and two f-bombs for shock benefit in the first minute, not exactly Prince of Darkness nor comedy material. Ozzy is standing in front of the stage yet Sharon must announce “Ozzy is here” to the audience.. I believe this was for Ozzy’s benefit and apparently needs to be reminded every five minutes. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 10 Recap

In Orlando, Mindy is the first to breakdown and begin crying. She informs the remaining girls that she is afraid and doesn’t want to get hurt. Also, I believe the stress of recently reaching the age of adulthood is weighing on her. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 9 Recap

The episode starts with the girls disappointed. First, to see that Taya was not eliminated, and secondly they find out they are headed to St Augustine, Florida. From the strip of Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood, California to St. Augustine, Florida: The Bret Michaels story. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 8 Recap

In Panama City the girls dress in tiny bikinis, meet Bret at the pool, and find out they must watch children for the day. We learn that most of the girls have several kids of their own. Ashley speaks for the group when she says, “I may be a stripper on the weekends, but Monday through Friday I’m a Mom.” More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 7 Recap

As the bus travels to Alabama, Taya lets all know she has just won Penthouse Pet of The Year. Big Beverly is sitting next to her, stunned that Bret would be interested in any girl who takes off her clothes. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 6 Recap

The bus is headed to Nashville which is perfect for Mindy and her Southern accent. The girls are paired into two groups for Bret Michael’s Mud Bowl III. A football game where the girls fight for a date with Bret by wearing spandex shorts in a mud field. For those not familiar, Mud Bowl is like the old Bud Bowls, but with players of a lower IQ. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 5 Recap

As the Rock of Love tour buses roll into St. Louis the first stop is naturally Larry Flynt’s Hustler Club. Big Beverly immediately becomes defensive, “Another strip club?” Ashley sees the stripper poles, and says sincerely, “I’m home!” More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 4 Recap

In the beginning of episode four we learn that Maria has been taken to the hospital and will not be continuing. We are not told the cause, but I speculate it has something to do with her missing socks.

The bus rolls on to Chicago and Marcia begins (continues) to drink tequila. She is trashed when they arrive to see Bret Michaels rehearsing. Most disturbing is not the amount of alcohol already inside Marcia, but the view of Big John staring at Bret as he rehearses. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Episode 3 Recap

Episode three begins at a hockey rink where the girls have the task of slapping a Bret Michaels doll with hockey sticks into goals dressed up as cribs. Right away Brittaney lets us know that had she not pursued a career in porn she may have been an Olympic ice skating hopeful. I guess technically, we are all Olympic hopefuls. More...

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Rock of Love Tour Bus Recap

The first two episodes of Bret Michael’s latest reality show have established the following. First, this group of girls is the most insane cast to date (more on this shortly). Second, Bret Michaels, known rock star front man of the hair metal band Poison, can still be shocked (more on this shortly). Finally, despite an enormous amount of drinking during the first two seasons of Rock of Love, this season is going to make the past episodes look like a party hosted by Dr. Drew. More...

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In Search Of...The Best Underground Metal Songs

The vast, expansive world of underground metal can leave even the most persistent headbanger’s music collection lacking of many of the industry’s finest songs. With the depths of MySpace and the many other music sites which lend themselves to the exploration of one’s musical tastes, it can be a bit overwhelming trying to dig up the finest metal gems. Moreover, some metal fans so deeply embed themselves in one sub-genre that they might be missing some truly great stuff. This brief guide is intended to give you, the metalhead, a reference to some of those songs that “make” an album, that rattle around in your head for hours, and that warrant a deeper exploration of a band’s entire body of work. Furthermore, newer metalheads will find a few older songs from current big-name artists that are worthy of tracking down. More...

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This Week In Metal - August 31st, 2006 *Late*

Im aware of the fact that its a little late, and pushed closely together with TWIM for 9-8-06 but nonetheless I would hate to see you guys miss out on a week of news. So without further ado the records chart courtesy of CMJ :

22SlayerChrist Illusion 32
31SYLThe New Black41
44All That RemainsThe Fall of Ideals42
56The Human AbstractNocturne35
6-Bury Your DeadBeauty & The Breakdown26
7 *GwarBeyond Hell17
85UnearthIII: The Eyes Of Fire35
107Shadows FallFallout From The War41

Hatebreed becomes our third #1 ever, beyond Shadows Fall and SYL. It is amazing for them as a band to completly jump Slayer. All That Remains maybe just hitting stride in their young career, the success of this album and the sales and touring they are doing are pushing them over the top of their genre. Bury Your Dead returns to the chart with strong sales following a bouncey chart release. And the boys from Shadows Fall look like their run of 4 weeks in the chart might end as they slip to the #10 slot.

Onto the singles, courtesy of MusicMatch:

15Stone Sour30-30/15041
21UnearthThe Glorious Nightmare31
38SYLYou Suck33
43The Human AbstractCrossing the Rubicon22
54MastodonThe Wolf Is Loose24
69Shadows FallWill To Rebuild41
86Lamb of GodRedneck42
97All That RemainsThis Calling27

Not much change to the charts other then that of Stone Sour resurging to the #1 slot after never reaching it within the first four weeks. Between The Buried and Me makes a debut with Malpractice and the bottom of the chart holds strong with Slayer staying in the #10 slot. All four #1's in the charts 4 weeks remain, including the only 2 songs to be on all 4 weeks.

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This Week In Metal - August 24th, 2006

A third week, and to my surprise Slayer isn't number 1. Strapping Young Lad keeps the #1 spot for the second straight week. Meanwhile Slayer is at their heels and I would bet good money they takeover the top spot next week. Hatebreed's new album Supremecy could be the only thing that comes inbetween all of that but I highly doubt it. All That Remains holds strong as one of 4 bands that have stayed in the top 10 since TWIM was brought back. The second biggest highlight of the chart is the fact that All Shall Perish has broken thru and taken a spot inside the top 10. I've been a fan of these boys for a while and its amazing to see their name share spots with the likes of Shadows Fall and Unearth. And now for the chart courtesy of CMJ :

11Strapping Young LadThe New Black31
2*SlayerChrist Illusion 12
42All That RemainsThe Fall of Ideals32
57UnearthIII: The Eyes of Fire25
610Human AbstractNocturne26
7 3Shadows FallFallout From the War31
94Between the Buried and MeThe Anatomy Of34
10*All Shall PerishThe Price Of Exsistance110

And now for the tunes, with a drastic change in this weeks chart. Unearth jumps from seven to first, while Slayer's Cult drops from first to tenth. Only six songs stayed on the chart, while we had four really strong debuts from great bands. Hatebreed, Mastodon and the new ATR single. Not to mention the ever-growing popularity of Human Abstract debuts. The singles chart is always shaky as the seeming flavor of the week is always ahead here, and now for the music, courtesy of MusicMatch:

17UnearthThe Glorious Nightmare21
2*The Human AbstractCrossing The Rubicon12
4*MastodonThe Wolf Is Loose14
54Stone Sour30-30/15032
62Lamb of GodRedneck32
7*All That RemainsThis Calling17
810Strapping Young LadYou Suck28
93Shadows FallWill To Rebuild31

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This Week In Metal - August 17th, 2006

A new top album ? Its true, this week Strapping Young Lad takes over the top spot from Shadows Fall. Both of these bands are very deserving, but we crown our second #1 in as many weeks. Last weeks top 7 managed to stay on the chart, but jump around a little bit. While we have 3 brand new albums debuting this week, with one going as high as #6 in Voivod's Katorz. This is quite possibly the best album these guys have released and they are finally getting the notority they deserve. Not far behind them in the new releases is Unearths' III: The Eyes Of Fire, which is amazing considering it hasnt been released in alot of areas yet but the pre-orders are astounding. I see a #1 in the future for these guys, but who can knock off the consistancy SYL is showing. All That Remains also leapfrogged The Shads into the #2 slot and the big jumper was Between The Buried And Me gaining three slots, which is hard to do considering the company they are in. Meanwhile, Cellador dropped from 8th to 11th. Acacia Strain from 9th to 14th and BYD to 12th. New albums already making a storm up the charts are Slayers "Christ Illusion" with pre-ordering alone landing it inside the top 20. Hatebreed's Supremecy is also showing strong and will reach the top 10 next week. Also in responding to the comments I am considering making this, and the singles list a top 15. If you think its a good idea please respond so, or if thats too much tell me to keep it at 10. \m/.

12SYLThe New Black21
23All That RemainsThe Fall of Ideas 22
31Shadows FallFallout From The War21
47BTBAMThe Anatomy Of24
54DragonforceImhuman Rampage24
7 -UnearthIII: The Eyes of Fire17
86Stone SourCome What(ever) May26
95Cattle DecapitationKarma.Bloody.Karma25
10-Human AbstractNocturne110

Now for the singles, with a very familiar band to anyone who visits this site, taking over as #1. Lamb of God also stays strong moving up 1 to #2. Shadows Fall and Stone Sour round out the top 4 with a big jumper for the week Celtic Frost's Ground moving up to number 5. Threat Signal holds strong and then we get to three really strong debuts by 3 really strong bands. SYL's new ozzfest anthem boasts the #9 spot as a highlight of the new songs. Roudning out the top 10 is BLS with Concrete Jungle.

23Lamb of GodRedneck22
31Shadows FallWill To Rebuild21
42Stone Sour30-30/15022
58Celtic FrostGround25
67Threat SignalRational Eyes26
7*UnearthThe Glorious Nightmare17
8*TerrorStrike You Down18
9*Strapping Young LadYou Suck19
109Black Label SocietyConcrete Jungle29

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