Posts Tagged “Cozy Powell”

Back in May, Honduras rock journalist Alvaro Villatoro (a.k.a. Lemmy Simmons) of Hard Heavy conducted an interview with former BLACK SABBATH singer Tony Martin. You can now listen to the chat using the SoundCloud widget below.

In January 2013, Martin was signed to a new music publishing deal by Alan Bambrough of Sony/ATV Music Publishing Limited. Martin said he was “very pleased” and was “looking forward to expanding into other areas.”

Martin‘s latest release was the fourth album from GIUNTINI PROJECT, the Italian heavy metal band started in 1988 by guitarist Aldo Giuntini as a solo project. GIUNTINI “Project IV” came out on May 24 via Escape Music and features additional contributions from Ezio Secomandi (on drums), Dario Patti (on keyboards) and Fulvio Gaslini (on bass).

Martin‘s last solo album, “Scream”, was released in November 2005 via MTM Music. The CD featured legendary drummer Cozy Powell (BLACK SABBATH, RAINBOW, WHITESNAKE) on the track “Raising Hell” as well as songwriting contributions by another SABBATH member, Geoff Nicholls.

BLACK SABBATH released six albums with Tony Martin on vocals: “The Eternal Idol” (1987), “Headless Cross” (1989), “Tyr” (1990), “Cross Purposes” (1994), “Cross Purposes Live” (1995) and “Forbidden” (1995).

Comments No Comments »

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to join a band that’s a bona fide rock institution? URIAH HEEP drummer Russell Gilbrook (who previously played with Tony Iommi, Cozy Powell’s former band BEDLAM, and the GENERATORS OF DISTORTED SOUND, among others) found out when he joined the band in 2007, 38 years into the group’s existence.

Comments No Comments »

A teaser for “Dance With The Devil: The Cozy Powell Story”, the proposed documentary about late drummer Cozy Powell (RAINBOW, MICHAEL SCHENKER GROUP, BLACK SABBATH, WHITESNAKE, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN), can be seen below.

Comments No Comments »

10. Rainbow – Rising

This album deserves an iconic status yet only receives one depending on certain circles. Arguably better songwriting than Ritchie Blackmore’s time in Deep Purple and here is where Ronnie James Dio first made his name, not to mention Cozy Powell, Jimmy Bain and Tony Carey. Every song on Rising is letter perfection. “Stargazer” is heavy metal’s answer to Zeppelin’s “Kashmir,” while the hyperactive band soloing on “A Light in the Black” stands as a heavy metal highlight worthy of constant re-investigation.

9. Opeth – Blackwater Park

The high priests of Goth metal. While I wanted to include My Dying Bride on this list, this sector of metal belongs almost exclusively to Opeth. Nobody of their breed possesses Opeth’s collective song theory and precise sculptures of four bars per each segment to their music. You can sit there and count off the fourths, it’s that exact. Rembrandts of their dark art, Blackwater Park has been said to have brought tears to some listeners and it is that emotional.

8. Mastodon – Leviathan

One of the most mind-blowing albums in the past ten years, much less metal’s history. It’s nearly too much to consume on the first couple go-rounds, that’s how intricate Mastodon is. Detailed to excellence and heavier than your senior aunt’s bra, there’s not enough accolades one can heap upon Leviathan.

7. Metallica – Master of Puppets

This is an album I literally ran from my bedroom and up the train tracks to the music store to buy after borrowing it from a friend. I was that devasted by Master the first time I heard it. It rightly deserves a high mark on anyone’s list, but nowadays, it carries an air of melancholy. I remember when Cliff Burton was killed just as Master was gaining steam in the metal community. And unfortunately, I just cannot stomach hearing any of these songs on “Mandatory Metallica” segments on FM radio but it’s just too damned hypocritical.

6. Judas Priest – British Steel

Even non-metal fans love “Breaking the Law” and that’s scary, but it’s also testament to what a great freaking band Judas Priest is and how revered British Steel as an album is. We’ll miss you, guys, the past decade-plus has been controversial, but thanks for British Steel and all the amazing works that stand proud in the name of metal.

5. Guns N’ Roses – Appetite for Destruction

It’s fashionable for everyone ranking as a critic to a beer-drinking, living for the weekender to cite Appetite for Destruction as a world class album. Well, yeah, it is. I’ve reached the point where I could go without ever hearing “Welcome to the Jungle,” “Paradise City” and “Sweet Child ‘O Mine” on the goddamn radio again, but I could never live without having access to “My Michelle,” “Think About You” and “Nightrain.”

4. Black Sabbath – s/t

When everyone claims Black Sabbath to be the original heavy metal band, this is the album, not necessarily Paranoid (as great as the latter is) which backs all of it up. Black Sabbath still stands as one of the most confrontational albums the world’s ever known. Diabolical in sound, yet carrying an urgency to call out social injustice, Black Sabbath were bigger hippies than most ever acknowledged them to be. Think about that, you hippie bashers.

3. Iron Maiden – Number of the Beast

This album is so much more about “Run to the Hills,” the song which everyone will remember Iron Maiden for. So much more. Number of the Beast is one of the first genuine metal masterpieces boasting an improbable switch-up in vocals that surpassed anyone’s expectations. Even the lesser-cited songs like “Badlands” and “Invaders” are sheer brilliance. In much shorter time than Iron Maiden’s later albums, they carry their listeners on a metal odyssey very few can match.

2. Iron Maiden – Powerslave

This is my personal favorite heavy metal album of all-time. Everything preceding Powerslave are supreme classics, yet I have never felt anything for a metal album in quite the same manner as I do Powerslave. “2 Minutes to Midnight” and “Aces High” are a pair of Maiden’s most-respected individual songs, yet I feel literally carried aloft by “Losfer Words (Big ‘Orra),” “The Duellists,” “Flash of the Blade,” “Back in the Village” and of course, the titanic “Rime of the Ancient Mariner.” Creatively-speaking, this is Iron Maiden’s most adventurous and escapist record, and not a single lick is out of whack. Powerslave and the final selection on this list are, in my opinion, the most perfect albums of the genre.

1. Slayer – Reign in Blood

This is the album we should all ask one another the question “What were you doing the first time you heard Reign in Blood?” It’s this album that made the entire music world bend an ear and say “Whoa…” It’s been empirically proven in studies that Slayer has reached more diverse professions than any other band in metal’s history. A half hour is all they needed to lift everyone by their collective chin and knock ’em on their duffs. Speed metal sovereignty, of course, but it is still the penultimate metal listening experience for all generations and those to come. For the record, I was sitting on my bedroom floor in 1987 once I finally caught up to Reign in Blood (released the year prior) and saying “Whoa…”

Comments No Comments »

Rockpalast Hard Rock Legends Vol. 2: Michael Schenker Group
2010 MIG-Music
Ray Van Horn, Jr.

I’ve said it plenty of times before and I’ll say it again. Music just isn’t valued today like it used to be, at least in terms of televised presentation. No, American Idol does not count, nor will it ever, given the fact it’s a shrewd marketing ploy designed to hedge out demographics in the cheapest and most far-reaching platform possible. Not a genuine live music vehicle. Sad we likely will never see another Midnight Special or a 24-hour pure music, damn the Snookies MTV in this lifetime.

In case you’re unfamiliar with it, Germany’s Rockpalast is a historic live music program rivaling the best the world has ever seen. Airing full concerts (or at least large chunks of them), Rockpalast has showcased some of the greatest rock, blues and metal acts of all-time from Thin Lizzy to ZZ Top to Skynard and even the Superfreak himself, Rick James.

While this might be a tricky task hunting down a copy of the Rockpalast DVD concert series outside of Europe, do consider making the effort to trail after Rockpalast Hard Rock Legends Vol. 2: Michael Schenker Group.

If for nothing else, the opportunity to behold the flinging arms of Cozy Powell in 1981 is worth the hunt. Of course, Michael Schenker is his own draw in this sizzling performance at the Markthalle in Hamburg. Already having done his stints with the Scorps and UFO, Schenker in the beginning years of his solo unit ranks amongst the most formidable metal units of the day.

Interesting how the early MSG frequently misses the history pages of metal, which might have to do with Schenker’s one-time social aversion. I can tell you personally after a 4.5 hour interview with the man years ago there’s more to Michael Schenker than folks realize. At this point in ’81, Schenker musically is at his zenith. This set corrals a large portion of the first MSG album,i.e. “Armed and Ready,” “Cry for the Nations,” “Lookin’ Out from Nowhere” and the titanic instrumental (which should be considered one of Iron Maiden’s building blocks), “Into the Arena.”

Though Billy Sheehan and Denny Carmassi had left the Michael Shencker Group at the time of this live filming, original MSG vocalist Gary Barden was still prowling his position and this concert shows him at his leery best. Skulking, vamping, wide-eyed, borderline maniacal, Barden centers the mike with a primal energy you don’t dare miss, even when the cameras widen to bring in bassist Chris Glen and guitarist/keyboards Paul Raymond. Barden is perhaps one of hard rock’s most underrated frontmen and you’ll see why in this performance.

Cozy Powell is so thunderous and so extensive in his work for Michael Schenker you actually see him panting, heaving and drenched about three-fourths of the way into the set when the band pauses between songs. Still, it’s heartwarming to watch Powell paintbrush his kit like a professional and with his trademark boyish enthusiasm.

Schenker is frequently in near isolation at stage left for much of the show, but Lord, what intensity he brings to the Rockpalast gig! His venomous shredding and string yanking is to be savored like imported tea. Even when he turns the UFO classic “Rock Bottom” into a prolonged jam, you feel like you’re watching a chemist at work. Very rare in that respect considering today the jam session is widely considered a wank.

Nothing wanking about this concert. Though this lineup is often dismissed, Schenker and his post-Sheehan posse give it all they have for a ravenous Hamburg audience who are seen in 1981 literally pulling their hair in admiration. It’s timeless stuff and shame on anyone for buying into American Idol as a music show. Put their best night up against this beast of a concert? Like Danny Zuko said to Sandy in Grease: Jealous of that jockstrap? Don’t make me laugh, ha ha ha…

Rating: ****1/2

Comments No Comments »