Tuesday, June 14, 2016

I Don't Care Anymore, a track so awesome it got two covers

As I have mentioned many times on this blog I love the fact that the new Metal and Hard Rock bands give love and respect to the artist who came through earlier by doing some great covers.  For this post I am going to look at two bands who within months covered a great song. Neither are as good as the original but one comes close.

For the original and best version of this song I give you Phil Collins, again.  I know I just reviewed one of Phil's albums just a few weeks ago  but give me a break.  The song covered is from Phil's next release in 82.  The track is I Don't Care Anymore.  There are very few artists who can do a better pissed off, I am Over it, F you song.  The track starts off with pounding drums light synch and Phil's lyrics.  Like his similar dark  work on In The Air Tonight,  the tone is ominous and awesome.  I Don't Care Anymore is either 1 or 1A of my favorite Phil Collin's songs.

The tribute that is almost as good, in my opinion, is from the Metal Band Hell Yeah.  Hell Yeah is a newer Metal supergroup with the drummer Vinnie Paul from Pantera.  The cool thing about this cover is some of the guitar tracks are from the late Dimebag Darrell.  For those who don't know Dimebag was wastefully  killed by a crazed fanatic in 2004 on stage during a concert.  It is a awful thing to happen and we are lucky that at least some of Dimebag's music can live on.  Even without the cool feature with Dimebag I prefer this cover.  I feel it is edger.  The way the lyrics are delivered to start the track which are half sung and half growled leads to a feeling of hinted violence and deep rage.  The guitars are played up more on this version and it is rawer.  I like the fact that Hell Yeah decided to add their flavor to the song, sometimes that can go back but fortunately it works on this track.

Oddly enough the next version was released only a month earlier from the Hell Yeah version.  Saint Ansonia is a Hard Rock band out of Canada.  I heard this release earlier on Sirius XM's Octane channel and thought it was great.  Upon the more I listen to the track and the release of Hell Yeah's version I don't think it is so great anymore.  Don't get me wrong I still like Saint Ansonia's take but it doesn't add anything.  Saint Ansonia's version is very faithful to Phil Collin's, almost too faithful.  You don't have to reinvent the wheel but give me something new, cause if you don't why should I listen to anything you have to say if it isn't at least a little different.

Clearly the best version of I Don't Care Anymore is the Phil Collin's version, but it is great to know that new bands are giving respect to the great artists who came before.

Til next time, listen to the best  - your ears deserve it.

Monday, June 6, 2016

How the Wilson sisters stole my Heart

I still remember the moment like it was yesterday. 16 years old and on a trip for the youth group hanging at the hotel watching MTV. The video for What About Love is on and out comes Nancy Wilson poured from liquid steel holding her Les Paul guitar, ahh young lust.  Even odder this wasn't the first time I had seen the band Heart. For some god knows why reason the band was in a commercial for coffee in the early 80's. It was coffee helps drive Heart to their next album or some crap like that.

I learned of Heart from their release Heart in 85. The album was a slick well produced hit maker. The catchy riffs with major exposure on MTV thrust the Wilson sisters to popularity that the band only dreamed of in the 70's.

Now the Heart of the 70's was a great rock band. The Wilson sisters compared their sound to a female Led Zeppelin, a fair accessment.   Heart of the 80's was driven and written into a band that was taylored for videos and pop rock crossover. To be fair the Heart of the 70's would not be known near as well with the cards exposure so it was a risk well worth taking with their sound.

All the criticism aside, I loved Heart 85 release. The album had 4 top Ten hits and the group's first #1 hit with These Dreams. The filler tracks are great too. All Eyes, What He Don't Know and Nobody Home are solid rock songs.

Are the songs on Heart 85 as good as Majic Man or Baraduda, no they are not. Would as many people know of those great songs without the exposure on MTV probably not. Even more so without Ann and Nancy showing that Women can Rock hard would we have as many great Women who are Rocking now?

Til next time, listen to the best -  your ears deserve it.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Face it Phil Collins has great musical Value

It was nice to be a teenager when Miami Vice was on network TV.  Miami Vice was a great prep on Friday nights before going out.  The best thing was the music.  The soundtrack was dark and modern noir.  A song that goes hand in hand with the mystique of Miami Vice was Phil Collins' smash In the Air Tonight.  The song is a brooding sparse masterpiece whose wildly interpreted lyrics only add .to the legendary status of the song.  Also there isn't a person alive who hasn't played Air Drums during the drum solo.

The album that In the Air Tonight was on was released in 1981 so still a little early for me to have gotten into when it was released.  If any of Phil Collins' CDs I listened to it was No Jacket Required, the monster that was released later in the 80's

So let's give the Face Value CD a listen.  My first reaction to the CD was to come to Phil Collins' defense.  When Peter Gabriel left Genesis there was a huge knock on Phil Collins.  There was feeling that he took the band too pop and less progressive rock.  This CD is very stripped down and other than the track I Missed Again not a pop album at all.  On many tracks you can tell Phil Collins is a drummer first and on others you hear the horns that will be all over the smash CD No Jacket Required.  Any one who thinks Phil Collins doesn't write serious music needs to give this CD a listen.

Unfortunately upon repeated listening to the CD I came away not fully happy with it.  It's very dark and disjointed. The breaks between the happy and the very painful slow tracks are uneven and sudden.  You can tell Phil Collins was not in a good place, going through a divorce with his first wife, when writing this album.  Even the upbeat pop song I Missed Again upon deeper listening is not a happy subject mater.

If you are a fan of Phil Collins this is a great release, but for the casual listener be forewarned the first track on the Album is In The Air Tonight.  That track alone tells you what mood you should get into for rest of the release.

Til next time listen to the best your ears deserve it.