CD Review: “Live at Wacken 2016: 27 Years Faster: Harder: Louder”

“Live at Wacken 2016: 27 Years Faster: Harder: Louder”
Silver Lining
4 Discs
Runtime: 271 minutes

Our score:  CD 2.5 out of 5 stars
BluRay/DVD 3.5 our of 5 stars

The ultimate heavy metal event-in-a-box is now available for fans to enjoy in the comfort of their very own home. “Live at Wacken 2016: 27 Years Faster: Harder: Louder” is a collection of some of the best performances from the 2016 Wacken Open Air festival held in Germany each yr. The double disc CD and DVD/BluRay features music from over 30 artists including Arch Enemy, Saxon and Bullet for My Valentine all packaged nicely in multi fold digipack.

No need for lengthy international travel or standing in a soggy bog along the European country side as “Live at Wacken 2016: 27 Years Faster: Harder: Louder” allows you to enjoy a majority of the Wacken Open Air festival from the safety and dryness of your own couch or recliner. Get comfortable as with a runtime of over four hours you are definitely in for a long haul especially if you plan to check it out from start to finish. If you want to skip around a little I highly recommend checking out the performances from Eluveitie, Bullet for My Valentine and Dio Disciples as they were easily my favorite. I also enjoyed the video version of this package a little more as it included in most cases a couple songs from each artist.

Invite a few friends over crack open some drinks and thrown on either the DVD/BluRay or the included audio versions of the release. Though a majority of the performances contained on the set are from European acts I wasn’t too familiar with there is still plenty of other material from bands I had heard before. Though I enjoyed seeing bands like Steel Panther and Saxon I think I had more fun checking out the bands who I hadn’t heard of because those performances were fresh and new to me. It’s always great to be exposed to new music and that’s certainly what “Live at Wacken 2016: 27 Years Faster: Harder: Louder” does. I do feel though that if you are a more casual metal fan there might not be enough familiarity included to warrant purchasing the cumbersome four disc set however, If you are a dedicated, die hard metal head that has yearned for the Wacken experience but couldn’t make the trip then this release is certainly for you as it gets you as close as you can be without actually being there.

BluRay/DVD Track Listing: Disc 1

1.) Phil Campbell and the Bastard Sons- Big Mouth
2.) Profaner- Killing On Command
3.) Hamatom- Alte Liebe Rostet Nicht
4.) Auan- Pjaning Heillar Bjodar
5.) Saxon- Battering Ram
6.) Saxon- Heavy Metal Thunder
7.) Zombies Ate My Girlfriend- Appropriate Hate Crimes
8.) Vader- Triumph of Death
9.) Tsjuder- Demonic Supremacy
10.) Immolation- Despondent Souls
11.) Therapy? Screamager
12.) Michael Monroe- 78
13.) Orden Ogan- F.E.V.E.R.
14.) Orden Ogan- The Things We Believe In
15.) The Vintage Caravan- Expand Your Mind
16.) Bury Tomorrow- Man On Fire
17.) Entombed A.D.- Dead Dawn
18.) Equilibrium- But Im Auge
19.) Equilibrium- Born To Be Epic
20.) Die Krupps- Fatherland
21.) Axel Rudi Pell- Game Of Sins
22.) Axel Rudi Pell- Rock The Nation
23.) Ektomorf- Holocaust
24.) Girlschool- Take It Like a Band
25.) Lemmy- Born To Lose, Live To Win

Bluray/DVD Track Listing: Disc 2

1.) Torfrock- Trunkenbold
2.) Torfrock- PreBlufthammer B B-Bernhard
3.) Eluveitie- Tegernako
4.) Eluveitie- Havoc
5.) Bullet For My Valentine- Tears Don’t Fall
6.) Bullet For My Valentine- Waking The Demon
7.) Tarja- No Bitter End
8.) 1349- Sculptor Of Flesh
9.) Red Fang- Prehistoric Dog
10.) Unisonic- Unisonic
11.) Caliban- Paralyzed
12.) While She Sleeps- Four Walls
13.) Eskimo Callboy- Muffin Purper-Gurk
14.) Myrkur- Jeg er Guden, I er tjenerne
15.) Borknagar- Colossus
16.) Borknagar- Winter Thrice
17.) Metal Church- Gods Of Second Chance
18.) Therion- Sons Of The Sun
19.) Therion- Sons Of The Staves Of Time
20.) Steel Panther- Asian Hooker
21.) Steel Panther- Community Property
22.) Steak Number Eight- Black Eyed
23.) Triptykon- Morbid Tales
24.) Buffalo Summer- Money
25.) Barb Wire Dolls- Heart Attack
26.) Arch Enemy- War Eternal
27.) Budderside- Pain
28.) Dio Disciples- The Last In Line
29.) Dio Disciples- Stargazer

CD Track Listing: Disc 1

1.) Phil Campbell and the Bastard Sons- Big Mouth
2.) Hamatom- Alte Liebe Rostet Nicht
3.) Saxon- Battering Ram
4.) Vader- Triumph Of Death
5.) Tsjuder- Demonic Supremacy
6.) Immolation- Despondent Souls
7.) Theraphy?- Screamager
8.) Michael Monroe- 78
9.) The Vintage Caravan- Expand Your Mind
10.) Bury Tomorrow- Man On Fire
11.) Entombed A.D.- Dead Dawn
12.) Equilibrium- Born To Be Epic
13.) Die Krupps- Fatherland
14.) Axel Rudi Pell- Rock The Nation
15.) Girlschool- Take It Like a Band
16.) Ektomorf- Holocaust
17.) Torfrock- PreBlufthammer B B-Bernhard
18.) Eluveitie- Havoc

CD Track Listing: Disc 2

1.) Bullet For My Valentine- Tears Don’t Fall
2.) Tarja- No Bitter End
3.) 1349- Sculptor Of Flesh
4.) Red Fang- Prehistoric Dog
5.) Unisonic- Unisonic
6.) Caliban- Paralyzed
7.) Eskimo Callboy- Muffin Purper-Gurk
8.) Borknagar- Colossus
9.) Metal Church- Gods Of Second Chance
10.) Therion- Sons Of The Staves Of Time
11.) Steel Panther- Community Property
12.) Steak Number Eight- Black Eyed
13.) Triptykon- Morbid Tales
14.) Buffalo Summer- Money
15.) Barb Wire Dolls- Heart Attack
16.) Arch Enemy- War Eternal
17.) Budderside- Pain
18.) Dio Disciples- Stargazer

PAW Patrol Live! Lands in Orlando June 24 & 25th

PAW Patrol is on a roll with the first-ever live tour! It’s the day of the Great Adventure Bay Race between Adventure Bay’s Mayor Goodway and Foggy Bottom’s Mayor Humdinger, but Mayor Goodway is nowhere to be found.  PAW Patrol to the rescue!   For the mission, Ryder summons Chase, Marshall, Skye, Zuma, Rubble, Rocky, and the newest pup, Everest.  Their mission is to rescue Mayor Goodway and run the race in her place.  Using each of their unique skills and teamwork, the pups make several heroic rescues on their race to the finish line.

Show date: June 24 & 25, 2017
Show time: Show times vary
Tickets start at $21.75
Walt Disney Theater

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE TICKETS

A VStar Entertainment Production. Presented by Pedigree

Be a VIP – Very Important Pup!

VIP package includes:

  • Premium seat
  • Special Gift
  • Exclusive access to a Meet & Greet with Chase, Ryder and Skye after the show

Each adult & child in a group must have a VIP ticket. Pick up your VIP Packet at the VIP Check in table prior to the show. One adult may accompany up to 4 children. For any remaining questions, please contact info@vstarentertainment.com.

How do live online casino games work?

 

Online casinos are growing in popularity and in part this is due to their ability to simulate real-life gambling. While many games are purely virtual and involve no interaction with real people or other players, the best online casino will offer its players live games that can be so much more exciting and realistic than a regular online casino

In essence, a live online casino has live dealers instead of a computer drawing the cards, rolling the dice and spinning the wheel, just like they would do in any real casino, only this time it is being captured on webcam.

Differences Between Live Casinos and Other Online Games

The rules, of course, are the same. However, the biggest difference is that playing the game gives you a stronger feeling of being in the action. When you open the game you see a live video with your dealer standing at a real roulette or blackjack table, or whichever game you have chosen to play. The dealer is in an authentic casino environment, and there may be several other players at the table at the same time playing from home just like you.

Live Dealer Technology

Technology has advanced so far that casinos are able to now stream live footage in real time using cameras showing real dealers in real casinos. Real time means that there is no delay between flipping over cards and what you see on your computer screen. And with high-speed Wi-Fi and fast internet connections, the high image quality makes you feel like you’re truly sitting at the table.

How It Works

Live online casino games work just like you would expect with a dealer at a brick and mortar casino. For a card game you will see the cards being shuffled, for roulette you will see the wheel being set in motion, etc. You will have access to an interactive control panel where you can place your bets on a virtual betting table, check your account balance, communicate with the dealer and more.

The Advantages

Just like with any online casino games, probably the biggest advantage to playing online is convenience. With a live dealer, you add in the ability to play against real opponents and dealers, making the experience feel even more authentic, while still being in the comfort of your own home.

You can play at any time on any day, without having to wait and with a world of opportunities at your fingertips.

Live Nation Celebrates Beginning of Summer Concert Season with “National Concert Day” and Special Offer for Fans.

LIVE NATION CELEBRATES BEGINNING OF SUMMER CONCERT SEASON WITH ‘NATIONAL CONCERT DAY’ AND SPECIAL OFFER FOR FANS:

1,000,000 TICKETS AVAILABLE FOR ONLY $20
  – $20 Tickets Will Be Available for 1000+ Shows at LiveNation.com/20ticket for One Week Only May 2 – May 9, with Special AT&T Pre-sale Beginning May 1–

– Jason Aldean, Foreigner, The Roots, Daughtry, Prince Royce, Nickelback and More to Celebrate Live Nation’s ‘National Concert Day’ Presented by State Farm on May 1 in New York City –

LOS ANGELES (April 25, 2017) – From experiencing live music under the stars at an outdoor amphitheater, to rocking out at an arena, or taking a road trip to a music festival, there is something special about summer concerts, and Live Nation is celebrating the start of the season with National Concert Day on May 1, as well as the “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion,” which offers over 1,000,000 tickets to some of Live Nation’s summer tours for just $20 (that’s all-in, no additional fees).

Presented by State Farm and produced by Live Nation, National Concert Day is a time for the artists and fan communities to unite around their love of live music. With most tours and festivals already announced, it’s also a great time for fans to plan out their summer concert schedule throughout May, June, July and August.

In celebration of National Concert Day, for one week only, Live Nation is launching their “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion” by making over one million tickets available for just $20. There will be tickets for 50+ tours and 1000+ shows at venues across the nation. The general on-sale for the “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion” begins Tuesday, May 2 at 8am local time, and continues for one week through Tuesday, May 9. See below for a highlight of performers offering $20 tickets, and visit livenation.com/20ticket for more information and to purchase tickets.

AT&T is bringing customers to the front of the line for the “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion” with AT&T priority presale ticket access beginning Monday, May 1 at 10am local time through the AT&T THANKS program**. For complete presale details visit att.com/frontoftheline.

Additionally, on National Concert Day, Live Nation is producing a special concert in New York City at Irving Plaza presented by State Farm. This year’s celebration features performances by Jason Aldean, Foreigner, The Roots, Daughtry, Prince Royce, and Nickelback.

Prior to the performance, several of the artists will stop by to chat with media about their upcoming summer tour including, OneRepublic, Rob Thomas and Paul Doucette (Matchbox Twenty), Joan Jett, Adam Lambert (Queen + Adam Lambert), Phillip Phillips, Stephan Jenkins (Third Eye Blind), John Rzeznik (Goo Goo Dolls), Mike Einziger and Brandon Boyd (Incubus), Straight No Chaser, Scott Bradlee (Postmodern Jukebox), Adam Duritz (Counting Crows), Cheap Trick, Jason Bonham, The KIDZ BOP Kids, and more. The National Concert Day event will be hosted by NBC’s Lilliana Vazquez.

Continuing the celebration of National Concert day, and launching the on-sale for the “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion,” OneRepublic will perform live on NBC’s TODAY Show on May 2.

Nationally Touring Artists Included in Live Nation’s $20 “Kickoff to Summer Ticket Promotion”

For a full list of artists, please visit LiveNation.com/20ticket.

Boston with Joan Jett & the Blackhearts
Brad Paisley with Dustin Lynch, Chase Bryant and Lindsay Ell
Brantley Gilbert with Tyler Farr and Luke Combs
Chicago and The Doobie Brothers
Chris Brown
Dead & Company
Deep Purple and Alice Cooper with special guest The Edgar Winter Band
Def Leppard with Poison and Tesla
Deftones & Rise Against
Depeche Mode
Dierks Bentley with Cole Swindell and Jon Pardi
Earth, Wind & Fire and CHIC ft. Nile Rodgers
Enrique Iglesias & Pitbull
Florida Georgia Line with Nelly and Chris Lane
Foreigner and Cheap Trick with special guest Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience
Future
Goo Goo Dolls with special guest Phillip Phillips
Hank Williams Jr and Lynyrd Skynyrd
Incubus with special guest Jimmy Eat World
Jason Aldean with Chris Young and Kane Brown
Jeff & Larry’s Backyard BBQ featuring Jeff Foxworthy & Larry the Cable Guy
Jermaine Dupri Presents SoSoSUMMER 17 Tour
John Mayer
Kings of Leon
Korn with Stone Sour
Lady Antebellum with Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Young
Lifehouse and Switchfoot
Lionel Richie and very special guest Mariah Carey
Luke Bryan with Brett Eldredge
Matchbox Twenty and Counting Crows
Muse with special guest Thirty Seconds to Mars
New Kids on the Block with Paula Abdul and Boyz II Men
Nickelback with special guest Daughtry and Shaman’s Harvest
OneRepublic/The Honda Civic Tour featuring OneRepublic with special guests Fitz & The Tantrums and James Arthur
Prince Royce
Queen + Adam Lambert
Retra Futura
Rod Stewart with very special guest Cyndi Lauper
Sam Hunt with Maren Morris and Chris Janson
Straight No Chaser / Postmodern Jukebox
Styx and REO Speedwagon with special guest star Don Felder
Sublime with Rome and The Offspring
The KIDZ BOP Kids
Third Eye Blind with special guests Silversun Pickups
Train with special guests O.A.R. and Natasha Bedingfield
Young the Giant with special guest Cold War Kids & Joywave
Zac Brown Band

To see a complete list of Live Nation’s summer tours and festivals, please visit livenation.com.

**Priority presale: While supplies last. Eligibility, ticket limits, fees, charges and additional terms & restrictions apply.

CD Review: Gary Clark Jr. “Live North America 2016”

“Live North America 2016”
Gary Clarke Jr.
Warner Bros.
Tracks: 12

Our score: 3 out of 5 stars

To coincide with Gary Clarke’s guest appearances during Eric Clapton’s 50th anniversary shows at Madison Square Garden and at The Forum in Los Angeles in mid March comes the guitarists latest live recording titled “Live North America 2016”. The album is being released via Warner Bros. Records and includes all new and unreleased live recordings from Clark’s 2016 tour which was in support of his acclaimed 2015 release “The Story of Sonny Boy Slim”.

Live recordings can often be hit or miss. Despite the recent advances in digital recording the main brunt of the work still falls on the artists to put forth a worthwhile performance. In the case of the latest Gary Clark Jr. album “Live North America 2016” is mostly all hits. Clark’s performance throughout the albums 12 tracks captures the listener’s attentions and holds it close. Tracks like the soulful “The Healing” and “Down to Ride” showcase Clark’s talents as both a player and vocalist while songs such as “When My Train Pulls In” and “Numb” capture a grittier side of Clark’s musical pallet.

Though I found the albums overall mix to be a touch off at certain points you have to know going in to a live album that there are going to be some audio short comings as there are multiple factors that come in to play with this type of set up some of which are not favorable for recording. However what is consistant across the albums 70 plus minute run time is the musicianship shown by Clark and his band. Each of the twelve performances that make up this album is sure to have something for every listener out there making it worth checking out.

Track Listing:
1.) Grinder
2.) The Healing
3.) Our Love
4.) Cold Blooded
5.) When My Train Pulls In
6.) Down to Ride
7.) You Saved Me
8.) Shake (feat. Leon Bridges with Jeff Dazey)
9.) Church
10.) Honest I Do
11.) My Baby’s Gone
12.) Numb

CD Review: Michael Schenker Fest “Live” Tokyo

Michael Schenker Fest “Live” Tokyo
Michael Schenker
inakustik
Tracks: 18

Our score: 3 out of 5 stars

Michael Schenker, one of music’s greatest rock guitarists has just released a new live album titled “Michael Schenker Fest “Live” Tokyo”. Recorded at Tokyo’s International Forum on August 24, 2016 via inakustik this historic concert features guest appearances from some of the greatest rock vocalists who have worked with Schenker over the years including M.S.G.’S Gary Barden, Graham Bonnet, and Robin McAuley of the McAuley Schenker Group.

For Michael Schenker fans not fortunate enough to have been able to attend the “Michael Schenker Fest” last year in Tokyo, Japan the latest live offering from the prolific guitarist has you covered. Together with inakustik the listen is instantly catapulted front and center for a barrage of riff-tastic goodness courtesy of Schenker and, a bevy special guests from Michael various groups. Tracks like “Attack of the Mad Axeman” featuring Gary Barden, “This Is My Heart” featuring Robin McAuley and probably my favorite track off the release “Doctor Doctor” which features Gary Barden, Graham Bonner and Robin McAuley all side by side with Schenker and his band.

Though I found the albums overall mix to be a touch thin the performances on each of the albums 18 tracks more than made up for any audio short comings as each performance was quite enjoyable. I also liked that the release is available in a variety of formats (CD, DVD, Blu-Ray) allowing you to have two different experiences with the same release. Long time Schenker fans will certainly want to pick this up for their collection.

Track Listing:
CD 1
1.) Intro: Searching For Freedom
2.) Into the Arena
3.) Attack of the Mad Axeman
4.) Victim of Illusion
5.) Cry for the Nations
6.) Let Sleeping Dogs Lie
7.) Armed and Ready
8.) Coast to Coast
9.) Assault Attack
10.) Desert Song
11.) Dancer

CD 2
1.) Captain Nemo
2.) This Is My Heart
3.) Save Yourself
4.) Love Is Not a Game
5.) Shoot Shoot
6.) Rock Bottom
7.) Doctor Doctor

Blu-ray Review “Live by Night”

Actors: Ben Affleck, Elle Fanning, Brendan Gleeson, Chris Messina, Sienna Miller
Directors: Ben Affleck
Rated: R
Studio: Warner Brothers
Release Date: March 21, 2017

Film: 3 out of 5 stars
Blu-ray: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 2 out of 5 stars

I was flat out surprised with the lack of success around Ben Affleck’s “Live by Night”. Personally, I think it was affected by his nonstop headlines with his role of Batman. Fans are torn on him now between popularity. This film I enjoyed. I love Affleck in it as well as his script and his direction. Affleck does best when he is in control of his story and shots. I also loved the supporting cast including Elle Fanning and Brendan Gleeson. This film also came out a tough time of the year during award season. The studio wasn’t pushing this film for awards hard enough and it ended up hurting the film as it disappeared like other missed attempts like “Silence”.

Official Premise: Taking fatherly advice is not in Joe Coughlin’s nature. Instead, the WWI vet is a selfproclaimed anti-establishment outlaw, despite being the son of the Boston Police Deputy Superintendent. Joe’s not all bad, though; in fact, he’s not really bad enough for the life he’s chosen. Unlike the gangsters he refuses to work for, he has a sense of justice and an open heart, and both work against him, leaving him vulnerable time and again—in business and in love. Driven by a need to right the wrongs committed against him and those close to him, Joe heads down a risky path that goes against his upbringing and his own moral code. Leaving the cold Boston winter behind, he and his reckless crew turn up the heat in Tampa. And while revenge may taste sweeter than the molasses that infuses every drop of illegal rum he runs, Joe will learn that it comes at a price.

Oscar-winning cinematographer Robert Richardson (“The Aviator”, “Hugo”) captures the film’s time setting perfectly within its 1080p transfer. Surprisingly this film has a Dolby Atmos available to choose from, which don’t get me wrong is amazing but seems overkill. There is also a DTS-HD MA 5.1 track. The special features are lacking including the rather boring of the audio commentary track with Ben Affleck, Director of Photography Robert Richardson and Production Designer Jess Gonchor. There are three featurettes focusing on the characters, cast interviews and the car chase scene. Lastly there are some deleted scenes included optional commentary.

Twisted Sister’s Jay Jay French talks about the bands new live DVD/CD and upcoming farewell shows.

Jay Jay French is the guitarist/founding member of the heavy metal group Twisted Sister. The band which is gearing up for a run of farewell shows in the summer/fall of this year is set to release a new live CD/DVD release titled “Twisted Sister: Metal Meltdown Live at the Hard Rock Casino Las Vegas- A Concert to Honor A.J. Pero” on July 22nd. Media Mikes spoke with Jay Jay recently about the upcoming release, the group’s final shows and what he will miss most about being on the road.

Adam Lawton: Can you give us an overview of the new CD/DVD Twisted Sister has coming out on July 22nd?

Jay Jay French: The whole focus of “Twisted Sister: Metal Meltdown Live” was to celebrate our drummer A.J. Pero who had recently passed away. This show was the bands first show after A.J.’s death and so much of his life and death was around that show that it made things very important to us. Subsequently this was also our first performance with Mike Portnoy on drums. The sound was produced by our bass player Mark Mendoza and the video was done by Barry Summers. Barry’s first exposure to the band was when he was a kid and saw play in a bar. I think because of that experience Barry brought sort of a fan boy type desire and approach to this project. I think Barry definitely tried to transfer his love of rock and roll over to people through this film.

AL: What was it like for the band going into this show knowing it was being filmed along with the fact that is was also going to be the bands first live performance with Mike on drums?

JJF: What band in their right fucking mind would have a new drummer come on and then have their first performance record for television? (Laughs) Mike is such a pro and a really great guy. I don’t know if we could have done this with any other person. This was a very hard and emotional thing. In the film there is a drum solo that is just A.J. That wasn’t a production trick or anything like that. That was actually up on the screen during the show. We did every show like that last year. Mike is so respectful of A.J. that he was up for whatever we wanted/needed.

AL: How does this film differ from that of the recently released “We Are Twisted F****** Sister” documentary?

JJF: We have a very unusual story. Every other story ends after being told about the ups and downs the band went through to make it. This story ends before we end up getting a record deal. “We Are Twisted F****** Sister” shows the struggle we went through to make it. We were basically just the focal point of that film. We didn’t know where the production was going or what portion of our career it was going to actually cover. It was interesting to see the director’s final interpretation of it. “Metal Meltdown Featuring: Twisted Sister” we were more involved in and I see it acting almost like a book end. The first film shows the beginning of the band and the new film shows the ending. The contrast between the two films is amazing. I think the coda being the Vegas show proves that not every band in their 60’s has to suck. We have a lot of pride in what we do and I think this DVD shows that not only are we still good but we are actually better.

AL: Was the Las Vegas show one you guys picked to film or was it sort of predetermined by the production company?

JFF: We had booked that to be filmed prior to A.J.’s passing. The big question was what we were going to do. The producers of the film as well as all of the promoters we worked with that summer were really great. They all told us that if we wanted to pull out of the events we could and that they would totally understand. We asked for a couple weeks away in order to be able to digest what all had happened. We had planned to end the band that year and I had actually talked with A.J. the day before his passing about the discussion I had with Dee related to this being it. During that conversation A.J. mentioned that he was going to need to drop off his current tour with Adrenalin Mob because he was in need of some rehab on his shoulders. He didn’t want me to be alarmed so he was letting me know ahead of time. That ended up being the heart attack. I guess he had actually had a heart attack three days prior also. I didn’t think anything of it as drummers tend to have aches and pains. I wished him well and that was it. That next morning I got the phone call that had passed. Shortly after I got a call asking if I would come out to the Adrenalin Mob show at the Starland Ballroom in New Jersey to do a song dedicated to A.J. I gladly accepted and that’s when Mike Portnoy came up to me and told me had always been a fan of the band and if we needed any help he would be glad to jump on board. I initially thought that after the funeral we would all sit down and that would be the end of things however after talking we decided to honor all of our commitments for 2015 and then wrap things up in 2016.

AL: What can you tell us about the bands remaining shows and, what are your plans once the band is done?

JJF: Our last show will be on Oct. 1st in New Jersey. We will be doing a bunch of well known festivals leading up to that. Due to all of our personal schedules the band can only play 10 or 15 shows a year as we just don’t all have the time. Outside of the band I write for Ink magazine and also write a business column for their online site. I am doing motivational speaking engagements and I am writing a book as well. I also like to do business advice for people. Those things are really my focus these days.

AL: Is there any part of you that will miss being on the road and in the band?

JJF: I don’t think I am going to miss any part of being on the road. I have done over 9,000 shows which is like being in the heavy metal version of “Cats” accept because were Jewish it’s spelled Katz. (Laughs) Those shows were all fun and everything and I loved being up there but I’m ready for it to be over.

Live Review: Ace Frehley, F.M. Kirby Center, Wilkes Barre, PA

Ace Frehley, KillCode

Date: April 15, 2016
Venue: F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts, Wilkes Barre, PA

Our Score: 2 out of 5 stars

Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley made a stop at the F.M. Kirby Center in Wilkes Barre, PA on April 15th, as part of a 12 show east-coast run promoting his latest album release titled “Origins Vol.1” The night was a series of ups and downs which at one point had the near capacity crowd on their feet cheering and the next moment had them scratching their heads while leaving the theater to a slow din of boo’s.

Being a huge fan of Ace I was certainly well aware of the fact that when it comes to the “Spaceman” you never know what you are going to get and, this night was certainly a testament to that. The show kicked off with the NYC based band KillCode whose modern rock tinged sound was met with a warm response from the Wilkes Barre. This could have been attributed to the fact that one of the bands guitarists was from the rural esque town or possibly that their performance was the most consistent of the night. Either way the band seemed well rehearsed and fit the opening slot well. After a brief set change and following the sounds of “Fractured Mirror” which played over the P.A. Ace and his band consisting of drummer Scot Coogan, guitarist Richie Scarlett and bassist Chris Wyse would take the stage. The group kicked off the set with one of Ace’s signature songs “Rip it Out” which gave way to several Kiss classics such as “Rocket Ride”, “Parasite” and “Love Gun”. It was at the start of “Parasite” that I began to notice that the night was in for an awkward turn. The songs tempo shifted back and forth as it seemed Ace and the rest of the band were clearly on separate pages. Thankfully after a bit of back and forth things leveled out and songs like Thin Lizzy’s “Emerald” and “Rock Soldiers” sounded great. Towards the end of the bands set Ace began to move less and less and at one point he was even sitting on one of his speaker cabinets. After a lackluster solo and his signature smoking guitar trick the band quickly ran through the Kiss/Ace staple “Cold Gin” before immediately leaving the stage. Previous shows on the tour featured a two song encore which the fans were anxiously waiting and cheering for. After several minutes the house lights came fully on and music began playing over the P.A signaling the show was over. As fans made their way out the doors loud boos and other un-pleasantries filled the air. With a set a set that ran just under 90 minutes there was certainly cause for such reactions.

Fast-forward about 12hrs. to when it was announced that immediately after the Wilkes Barre show Ace was rushed to a nearby hospital and treated for exhaustion and dehydration. (As a side note the last show of the tour scheduled for 4/16 was canceled) I understand people get tired and things happen but when you are at the level Ace is at and have been performing as long as he has shouldn’t steps be taken to prevent these types of avoidable occurrences? Especially on a tour consisting of only 12 dates! This however is the typical type of Ace behavior which partly makes him so entertaining yet which has also plagued his career since his early days in Kiss. Will it ever change? That’s very hard to say. What I can say is that on 4/15 Wilkes Barre was treated to classic Ace all the way.

Set List:

1.) Rip It Out
2.) Toys
3.) Rocket Ride
4.) Parasite
5.) Love Gun
6.) Snowblind
7.) Sister
8.) Emerald (Thin Lizzy Cover)
9.) Rock Soldiers
10.) Bass Solo/Strange Ways
11.) New York Groove
12.) 2 Young 2 Die
13.) Shock Me/Guitar Solo
14.) Cold Gin

Is Live Music Dying?

Credit Image Source: thehubuk.com

Most people fall in one of two categories: those who couldn’t live without going to live concerts and shows, and those who just don’t really care.

When did you last go to a gig? Even if you’re someone who loves to see their favorite bands performing, it’s undeniable that many people are being deterred by high ticket costs. Former Music Week editor Tim Ingham told The Guardian back in 2013 that promoters often bump up prices to create further demand when concerts are selling well. This seems to highlight that it’s not about the music and is more about the money. That’s pretty sad.

Across America, venues are closing. Take the iconic CBGB venue in New York, often hailed as the birthplace of rock’n’roll as we know it. Mike Jones told Hypebot that he believes there’s a generational shift. Young American fans don’t have disposable income, and once they’ve bought a ticket they still need money for merch and drinks. They are happier having a drink at home, and sometimes get into gig-going habit later in their adult lives, meaning the live music culture is disappearing. Perhaps this is why the top 50 American tours grossed 15% less in 2010 than in 2009, also according to HypeBot.

America isn’t alone in that phenomenon. London, another musically significant city seems to be the same. The Music Venues Trust of the British capital has observed that grassroots live music venues were in decline across London by 35% between 2007 and 2015. Of the 430 venues that were open, only 245 remain. This means that the 44,000 UK jobs in that industry as recently as 2008 have now seen a decline in numbers as well. However, London isn’t alone or by any means unique in that respect. Some of the UK’s most incredible music venues have suffered in recent years and fans have felt the loss of iconic venues. Mark Davyd of the Trust says that he understands why it’s happening. It all boils down to money. The Tunbridge Wells Forum as a venue, for example, is valued at just 31% of the figure it would reach if used for apartments. This isn’t just happening in Britain, it’s happening worldwide – and America isn’t immune.

Is The Music Scene Really Dead?

Statista has obtained figures from the PwC which show that live music ticket sales revenue in the US is projected to grow from 7.02 billion U.S. dollars in 2014 to 8.73 billion in 2019. Looking again at our friends across the pond, the introduction of a Live Music Act in the UK in October 2015 aims to protect small capacity venues of 200 people or less. The UK Music website believes that this policy will be a real boost to the live music economy. So, it’s not all doom and gloom after all.

 Credit Image Source: http://www.anchornayland.co.uk

There’s also good news in other respects as well. The music scene is actually more alive than ever, thanks to technology. Its omnipresence is incredibly apparent and this is taking off all over the world, even in emerging markets. According to the IFPI, 46% of the music industry’s revenue actually comes from digital channels. Music streaming is especially popular and 34% of the revenue in 2015 was coming from them alone as reported by Time.

When you’re streaming using online platforms, you can literally set a soundtrack to your life. From the chilled out moments to the important things, there’s always a track for you. Or, even better for some people, a curated playlist ready for your auditory pleasure. And there certainly is a lot of them out there. For instance, neuroscientists believe that classical music can heighten positive emotions in our brain and make us better performers. Looking at poker pro Jorge Limon’s poker tournament playlist, it’s quite apparent that he agrees. Apparently classical music helps him concentrate, although he’s also thrown in little Nine Inch Nails in there! His curated playlist is just one of many poker pro playlists recently published by PokerStars in collaboration with Spotify. Limon is not alone on the whole “music being important for sports players” front – NFL player Von Miller said he “loses himself” to Phil Collins, and “gets hyped” to Nirvana’s Lithium. Plus, the England football team confessed to “getting pumped” to the likes of Bastille, Drake… and even One Direction. Scientists at Brunel University also teamed up with Spotify, to come up with the optimum workout playlist, as reported by the Telegraph. All this is of course just the tip of the iceberg. Thanks to playlisting, we can all set our adventures to the music to suit our mood and tastes.

What Is Music Streaming & Why Is It Huge?

Music streaming is a way to listen to music through the internet. Users are usually offered a choice to either pay for such services, or to simply stream for free. Music streaming sites’ appeal comes from the fact that they’re highly accessible and cross-platform. They’re also more affordable than other options, with the market leader, Spotify, reporting that 60 million of their 75 million subscribers as of the end of 2015 opted for their completely free, slightly limited service.

So what makes such platforms so great? As we’ve seen above, playlists have become a really popular option and sites like Spotify and Tidal allows people to design their very own and share them with the world. Gone are the days of carting around several CDs or painstakingly burning a mix CD (or even mixtape!). 70% of the global population will have a smartphone by 2020, says TechCrunch. This means that a lot of people can carry theirs around. So, if you’ve always imagined yourself staring out of a train window to some thoughtful music at a poignant moment in your life, you now can! TechCrunch also say that Spotify users create or edit a staggering 5 million playlists PER DAY!

Credit Image Source: http://www.igyaan.in

As far back as 2011, music studios began to work with services like Spotify, realizing that they’re not the bad guys of the industry. Indeed, they may well be able to save it. Just like Netflix has infiltrated the film industry; music streaming has now become synonymous with the music industry. It’s not going anywhere!

Is Music Streaming The Industry’s Only Savior?

The idea of holding a tangible copy of an old-fashioned record is also becoming exciting to a lot of people. Thanks to Record Store Day making it cool to own a record in a vintage way, more and more people are buying physical 12″ and 7″ records. The BBC reports that vinyl sales managed to hit an 18-year high in 2014, and Forbes reported just months ago that vinyl sales surged a massive 30% in 2015 alone. Vinyl has truly made its comeback with young people!

Plus, if you think it’s all about hipsters, you’re wrong. There’s even a Frozen vinyl. Although, there’s probably a Frozen *everything*.

Credit Image Source: W Leicester Square 

 The Music Industry In Five Years

Who knows where the music industry will be in five years? It’s clear to see that those within the industry need to continue to capitalize on the trends of the moment in order to remain commercially successful. Whether this is through advertising revenue, ensuring vinyl copies are available, or simply making sure bands are on streaming platforms, it’s all about staying ahead of the game. And live music? Well, it’s pretty clear that audiences all over the world are still interested in music, so all the live gig industry has to do is find a way to adapt to the times. It can happen and we’ll certainly be sorry if it doesn’t.

 

CD Review: Steel Panther “Live From Lexxi’s Mom’s Garage

“Live From Lexxi’s Mom’s Garage”

Steel Panther
Open E
Mixing: Jay Ruston
Tracks: 13

Our Score: CD- 4 out of 5 stars
                       DVD- 3 out of 5 stars

The raining kings of spandex metal are back with something a little different this time around. “Live From Lexxi’s Mom’s Garage” is the bands first full length feature film which includes a live 10 song acoustic concert mixed with comedic scenes that show case the bands over the top sexually fueled high jinks. The dual CD/DVD is being released via Open E and features 10 tracks that will have you instantly reaching for the aqua net and eyeliner.

Right of the bat “Live From Lexxi’s Mom’s Garage” was a hit for me. The band wastes no time getting right down to business as the album is a spattering of songs from the bands 3 comedic tinged albums but with an acoustic flavor. Songs like “Party Like Tomorrow is the End of the World” and “Glory Hole” sound as good if not better than the original records. Despite the fact that acoustic instrumentation can be a bit unforgiving especially in live situations the band does an impressive job with each performance. Combine that with a great mix provided by Jay Ruston and you have an album that’s not only fun to listen to because of the songs tongue and cheek subject matter but also because it’s pleasing to the ears and you get to a hear new track from the band titled “That’s When You Came In”. Yes the album is a bit polished for a live album however, keep in mind that very few live albums are truly live making this a moot point. Along with the audio version of the CD fans get a video version of the show which only adds to the entertainment value of this release. Though I found a couple of spots where the audio seemed to be a touch out of sync the brief skits every few songs were funny enough to where you could look past any short comings. Throw in a couple special appearance of 80’s video vixen Bobbi Brown in the role of Lexxi’s mom and you have yourself a pretty killer package.

Yes some of the sexual innuendos used in “Live From Lexxi’s Mom’s Garage” have started to become a bit tiresome however the catchiness of Steel Panthers songs are what keep me coming back time and time again. For long time fans of the band picking up this release is a given. For those new to the group despite having three studio albums under the bands belt I recommend starting here a working your way backwards as the songs just sound so good played acoustically. For those wanting this for just the video performance be warned that that is all you will get on the DVD there are no behind the scenes or bonus footage here. Knowing the bands comedic nature I would have thought there would have been tons of outtakes and gag reels from this shoot that could have been included but when you are already getting both the audio and video version of the show for the price of one you can’t really complain.

Track Listing:
1.) Show Intro/ Say Yeah!
2.) Party Like Tomorrow is the End of the World
3.) Fat Girl (Thar She Blows)
4.) If You Really, Really Love Me
5.) Gloryhole
6.) Bukkake Tears
7.) The Burden of Being Wonderful
8.) Weenie Ride
9.) That’s When You Came In
10.) Michael Don’t Know
11.) Community Property
12.) Grindy and Sexy
13.) Death to All But Metal

Tommy Wiseau talks about “The Room” Rifftrax Live, James Franco in “The Disaster Artist” and his Hulu series “The Neighbors”

Tommy Wiseau is the director, producer, writer and star of the cult classic film “The Room”. Since the film was released back in 2003 it has achieved “Rocky Horror” like fame playing to midnight screenings non-stop to a huge fan base. Some called the film one of the worst ever made but true fans see “The Room” for what it really it, which is fun! The film was parodied live by the Rifftrax gang last year and is heading back to theaters again on January 28th, 2016. Media Mikes had a chance to catch up with Tommy again to discuss “The Room”, James Franco playing him in “The Disaster Artist” film adaptation and what else he is currently working on.

Mike Gencarelli: Tell us how you feel about “The Room” being parodied by Rifftrax Live?
Tommy Wiseau: Yeah they reached out to me about a year ago about doing it. I liked what they did, I mean, I don’t support parts of it 100%, but it does show how fun “The Room” is. People take things too serious and the film isn’t made to be serious, it is made to be fun. If you haven’t seen the Rifftrax Live version of “The Room” in theaters, I would recommend it highly when it comes around again January 28th, 2016. And bring a big group of friends with you as well.

Mike Gencarelli: The film has been out for 13 years now, are you ever taken back by the continued interested in it year after year?
Tommy Wiseau: Yes, I am still surprised. I am happy that people are still talking about it and still seeing it in theaters. I also have been working a few new projects as well that I am excited for fans of “The Room” to see as well. I love touring with the film across the country. I usually show “The Room” and an episode of “The Neighbors” as a double header. It is a lot of fun to do and also getting to interact with the fans.

Mike Gencarelli: Last time we spoke back in 2011, you mentioned you were planning a 3D release for “The Room”; can we expect that soon?
Yeah that is something that I have wanted to do for a while. Making a film into 3D is definitely not an easy process. So yes, I still want to release “The Room” in 3D, but right now I am not sure if I want to reshoot the entire film in 3D or just convert it. But I am definitely still planning and exploring my options. Right now James Franco is making his film of “The Disaster Artist”, so I will let him have that and then I will focus more on the 3D after it is released.

Mike Gencarelli: Speaking of that, tell us about your feelings on James Franco playing you in the film adaption of Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell’s book “The Disaster Artist”?
Tommy Wiseau: I think James is one best actors in the business. I feel good that someone like him is playing me. Of course, I also feel a little like they are taking something away from me since it is based around my life and my movie. I hope that this is a big success for James since then in return I think it will also then bring more people to “The Room” and that’s good.

Mike Gencarelli: Exactly, I think that this will put your film back in the spotlight and also introduce it to a new audience…
Tommy Wiseau: Yes, exactly. I am hoping about that. James and his brothers are doing a very good job so far and I am excited to see it when it comes out later this year.

Mike Gencarelli: Do you have any involvement or input on the upcoming film?
Yeah James did speak with me about the role and I gave him some tips. My life is very complex but I believe he will do a good job. I also have a small part in the film as well, which is cool.

Mike Gencarelli: Did you enjoy playing the villain Linton Kitano in newly released “Samurai Cop 2: Deadly Vengeance”?
Tommy Wiseau: It is always great to play a villain, I loved it. This film was a very fun experience for me I can tell you that.

Mike Gencarelli: You TV series “The Neighbors” has aired 6 episodes on Hulu; any plans for more episodes on that format?
Tommy Wiseau: Yes! Currently 6 episodes have aired on Hulu and the fans really have been excited about what we have so far. I am currently working on another 6 episodes for Hulu. We have been also exploring releasing the episodes in animated format as well. If you inquire on our website, we can send even send them to the fans (free of charge). So that is something that we were trying and it also getting a good response. I hope to have the next 6 episodes on Hulu by the end of 2016.

Mike Gencarelli: You did a Reddit last year where you mentioned a new project called “The Foreclosure”, what can you tell us?
Tommy Wiseau: Yeah that is a project that I am currently working on as well as “The Neighbors”. “The Foreclosure” focuses on the housing market right now and looks into the current situation that we are facing today with people not being able to pay for their houses and being forced to foreclose. It is a current topic. There is also another project that I have that is currently untitled but that I cannot talk about right now…maybe in about 3-4 months, I can. But a lot of very excited stuff coming up for my fans!

Peppa Pig Live! Arrives This Weekend at Hard Rock Live Orlando!

Description: Peppa Pig’s Big Splash is an action-packed live show, based on the popular Peppa Pig television series, designed to deliver to preschoolers and young fans an unforgettable first live theater experience. A fully immersive musical production featuring a dozen familiar and original songs, as well as an interactive sing-a-long, the live stage show will have fans laughing, singing, dancing and of course jumping in muddy puddles too – just like Peppa.

“We’re thrilled that even more families all around the country will have the opportunity to spend the day with Peppa and her family and friends,” said Joan Grasso, VP, Licensing – North America, eOne Family. “The live show is a fresh new way for U.S. fans to experience Peppa Pig and the tour promises to be BIG fun for the whole family.”

In Peppa Pig’s Big Splash, the nursery roof is leaking and Peppa and her friends need to fix it quickly. They set up a fair to raise money so Mr. Bull can do the repairs. There’s plenty of fun to be had as Peppa, George, Mummy and Daddy Pig, along with Danny Dog, Pedro Pony and Suzy Sheep work together to organize an exciting day out complete with a Champion Puddle Jumping competition judged by Mr. Potato, where everyone gets wet! An interactive experience full of singing, dancing, games, and muddy puddles, Peppa Pig’s Big Splash is a guaranteed blast for preschoolers and their parents alike!

Hard Rock Live Orlando
Telephone: 407-351-LIVE (5483)
Address: ​ 6050 Universal Boulevard,Orlando, FL 32819

– See more at: http://www.hardrock.com/live/locations/orlando/eventdetails.aspx?locationid=115&eventid=72171#sthash.xdO1ArbN.dpuf

CD Review: Against Me! “23 Live Sex Acts”

“23 Live Sex Acts”
Against Me!
Total Treble Music
Tracks: 23

Our Score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

“23 Live Sex Acts” is the latest offering from the band Against Me! As the title suggests the album features 23 live tracks which were recorded during various shows from the bands tour last year. The album is being released via Total Treble Music in both digital download and CD formats as well as on special edition colored triple vinyl.

If you have never experienced an Against Me! live show the band’s latest live album will get you as close as possible without actually being there. “23 Live Sex Acts” is easily one of if not the best live album I heard in a very long time. With a set list spanning the groups 13+ year career and capped off by near stellar sound production (I felt the bass could have been more present) I couldn’t have really asked for much more as the tracks blasted through my speakers. Older tracks like “Cliché Guevara” and “Pretty Girls (The Mover) sit perfectly with new tracks like “FUCKMYLIFE666”, “I Was a Teenage Anarchist” and the in your face “Osama Bin Laden and the Crucified Christ”. The album isn’t just a bunch of piped in crowd noise as at one point during the track “New Wave” front woman Laura Jane Grace stops the song to scold security for attempting to throw out a fan. Its brief moments like this that truly put you in the moment making the listening experience very real.

Whether you are a seasoned Against Me! fan who has seen the band countless times or you’re new to the group this album is for you. Over the course of 23 tracks you get an intense live feeling while being presented with a solid representation of the group’s diverse catalog. If you are any type of music fan at all then you would be doing yourself a tremendous disservice not picking up a copy of this album.

Track Listing:
1.) FUCKMYLIFE666
2.) Pints of Guinness Make You Strong
3.) Cliché Guevara
4.) True Trans Soul Rebel
5.) I Was a Teenage Anarchist
6.) New Wave
7.) Walking Is Still Honest
8.) Turn Those Clapping Hands Into Angry Balled Fists
9.) Transgender Dysphoria Blues
10.) Pretty Girls (The Mover)
11.) I Still Love You Julie
12.) High Pressure Low
13.) Don’t Lose Touch
14.) Miami
15.) White Crosses
16.) Osama Bin Laden and the Crucified Christ
17.) How Low
18.) Black Me Out
19.) Thrash Unreal
20.) Unconditional Love
21.) The Ocean
22.) Sink, Florida, Sink
23.) We Laugh at Danger and Break All the Rules

Blu-ray/CD Review “Melissa Etheridge: A Little Bit of Me: Live In L.A.”

Rated: Unrated
Studio: Shout! Factory
Run Time: 60 min
Format: CD/DVD/Blu-Ray

Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

“A Little Bit of Me: Live In L.A.” is the latest live release from singer/songwriter Melissa Etheridge. The performance was recorded on December 12th 2014 at the historic Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles during the last show of Etheridge’s “This is Me” Tour. The package is being released via Shout! Factory and is available on both DVD/CD and Blu-Ray/CD combo’s and Deluxe Digital Edition formats.
2 time Grammy Award winning singer/song writer Melissa Etheridge is back with a brand new concert performance release, Her first new live release since 2001’s “Live and Alone”.

Though “A Little Bit of Me: Live In L.A.” clocks in at just 60 minutes the 13 tracks that make up the set list are pure magic. All the hits are here including “I Want To Come Over”, “Come To My Window” and “I’m The Only One” along with several new tracks from Etheridge’s most recent studio album “This Is M.E.” including “Take My Number” and “A Little Bit of Me”. Though I found the sound and picture to be really great on the Blu-Ray edition I was a little underwhelmed that the entire concert only ran 60 minutes. With Etheridge’s last live release clocking in at over 2 hrs. and packed with bonus footage there was certainly something’s left to be desired. Don’t get me wrong the behind the scenes footage and interviews with the band are ok but nothing that hasn’t already been done.

If you are a long time Melissa fan and have to have everything she release to fulfill your collection then this release is certainly for you. I think this also would make a great piece to have if you saw one of the shows from this tours run. However if you are really looking for a more complete M.E. package then dig into her expansive back catalogue as there are several options that will probably be able to fit what you are looking for.

Track Listing:
1.) I Won’t Be Alone Tonight
2.) I Want To Come Over
3.) Chrome Plated Heart
4.) Take My Number
5.) Come To My Window
6.) Ruins
7.) A Little Bit of Me
8.) If I Wanted To
9.) Meet Me In The Back
10.) Bring Me Some Water
11.) I’m The Only One
12.) Like The Way I Do (Bonus track on Blu-Ray, DVD and Deluxe Digital Edition)
13.) Monster (Bonus track on Blu-Ray, DVD and Deluxe Digital Edition)