Tag Archives: Music

Ranking the ’90s + albums of Aerosmith, KISS, Blue Oyster Cult, and Ted Nugent (Sea of Tranquility)

Pete Pardo (Sea of Tranquility) & Martin Popoff rank the ’90s & 2000s albums of Aerosmith, KISS, Blue Oyster Cult, and Ted Nugent. #kiss #tednugent #aerosmith #blueoystercult

The 1990s rock and metal scene in the U.S. was characterized by a diverse array of subgenres and a shift towards alternative and grunge rock. Bands like Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Soundgarden emerged from the Pacific Northwest with a raw, introspective sound that resonated with disillusioned youth. Grunge, with its distorted guitars, anguished vocals, and introspective lyrics, captured the zeitgeist of the era, reflecting a sense of alienation and discontent. Meanwhile, alternative rock bands such as Smashing Pumpkins, Alice in Chains, and Stone Temple Pilots found commercial success with their blend of catchy melodies, heavy riffs, and introspective lyrics, offering a counterpoint to the excesses of mainstream rock.

In the realm of metal, the 1990s saw the rise of several influential subgenres, including thrash, death, and nu metal. Bands like Metallica, Megadeth, and Slayer continued to dominate the thrash metal scene, refining their sound and pushing the boundaries of technical proficiency. Death metal bands like Death, Morbid Angel, and Cannibal Corpse explored darker themes and pushed the limits of brutality and speed. Meanwhile, nu metal emerged as a fusion of metal, hip-hop, and alternative rock, with bands like Korn, Limp Bizkit, and Deftones blending aggressive riffs with rap-influenced vocals and electronic elements. Despite the diversity of styles, the 1990s rock and metal scene in the U.S. shared a sense of defiance and authenticity, as artists sought to express themselves honestly in a rapidly changing musical landscape.

This is the pro-level MIDI GUITAR I have wanted for decades! Seriously…

Jamstik just released their Classic MIDI Guitar – a 22-fret electric guitar with full MIDI capabilities. Powered by Jamstik signal processing technology & proprietary algorithms, the Jamstik MIDI guitar line represents state-of-the-art MIDI guitar performance built into a convenient all-in-one solution. As an electric guitar, the Jamstik Classic has everything you need. It features an HSS pickup configuration, 5-position toggle pickup switching, 2 tone knobs, 1 volume knob, and a standard 1/4” out. Wired MIDI-out options include a USB-C to USB-A cable or a 3.5mm TRS-MIDI cable. You can also connect wirelessly via Bluetooth.

Creating a MIDI guitar presents a unique set of challenges due to the fundamental differences between guitars and traditional MIDI controllers like keyboards. One significant hurdle is accurately capturing the nuances of guitar playing, such as string bending, vibrato, and palm muting, and translating them into MIDI data. Guitars produce sound through physical vibrations of strings, while MIDI controllers generate electronic signals, requiring sophisticated sensors and algorithms to interpret the guitarist’s movements accurately. Moreover, the wide variety of playing techniques and styles adds complexity, as the MIDI guitar must accommodate the diverse preferences of musicians, from shredding electric guitar solos to intricate fingerstyle patterns on acoustic guitars.

Another challenge lies in achieving reliable tracking of notes and chords in real-time. Unlike keyboards, where each key triggers a discrete note, guitars allow for polyphonic playing, where multiple notes can sound simultaneously. This requires robust detection algorithms capable of distinguishing between individual notes and chords amidst the complex interplay of strings. Additionally, latency becomes a critical concern, as any delay between the guitarist’s actions and the MIDI output can disrupt the flow of performance. Achieving low latency necessitates optimized hardware and software integration, as well as efficient signal processing techniques to ensure instantaneous response to the guitarist’s input. Despite these challenges, advancements in technology continue to push the boundaries of MIDI guitar innovation, offering new possibilities for musicians to explore and express themselves creatively.

Top 10 Judas Priest Songs

In celebration of the excellent new album Invincible Shield by Judas Priest, let’s Rank the Top 10 Judas Priest Songs!

1. “Painkiller” – This speed metal anthem is often considered one of Judas Priest’s greatest achievements. With its blistering guitar solos, powerful vocals by Rob Halford, and relentless drumming, “Painkiller” showcases the band at the height of their musical prowess.

2. “Breaking the Law” – A classic heavy metal anthem, “Breaking the Law” is instantly recognizable with its catchy riff and rebellious lyrics. It’s become a staple of Judas Priest’s live performances and remains one of their most popular songs.

3. “Electric Eye” – Known for its driving rhythm and futuristic lyrics, “Electric Eye” is a standout track from the album “Screaming for Vengeance.” The song’s catchy chorus and memorable guitar work make it a fan favorite.

4. “Victim of Changes” – This epic track from the album “Sad Wings of Destiny” showcases the band’s versatility and musical complexity. From its haunting intro to its powerful crescendo, “Victim of Changes” is a masterpiece of progressive metal.

5. “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’” – With its anthemic chorus and infectious energy, “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin'” became one of Judas Priest’s biggest hits. The song’s driving rhythm and memorable guitar solo have made it a classic of the heavy metal genre.

6. “The Hellion / Electric Eye” – Opening with the ominous instrumental “The Hellion” before launching into the electrifying “Electric Eye,” this track sets the tone for the album “Screaming for Vengeance.” It’s a perfect example of Judas Priest’s ability to create powerful and memorable music.

7. “Living After Midnight” – A staple of radio airplay and arena sing-alongs, “Living After Midnight” is a quintessential Judas Priest anthem. Its infectious melody and catchy chorus make it impossible not to sing along to. My band would play this as our encore song during live gigs. It always brought the house down.

8. “Turbo Lover” – From the album “Turbo,” this song showcases Judas Priest’s foray into a more glam metal sound. With its synthesizers and catchy hooks, “Turbo Lover” is a departure from their classic style but remains a fan favorite.

9. “Hell Bent for Leather” – This fast-paced anthem is a perfect showcase for Judas Priest’s trademark sound. With its driving rhythm and memorable chorus, “Hell Bent for Leather” is a classic example of heavy metal at its finest.

10. “Beyond the Realms of Death” – Often hailed as one of Judas Priest’s most emotionally powerful songs, “Beyond the Realms of Death” explores themes of isolation and despair. With its haunting melody and poignant lyrics, it’s a standout track from the album “Stained Class.”

Top 10 Gene Simmons of KISS songs!

Gene Simmons, the iconic bassist and co-lead vocalist of KISS, has collaborated on numerous songs throughout his career, both with KISS and other artists. Here are ten notable songs featuring Gene Simmons:

  1. “God of Thunder” by KISS – From the album “Destroyer” (1976). This song features Simmons on lead vocals and has become one of KISS’s signature tracks. It’s also the centerpiece of Gene’s fire breathing bass solo when played live.
  2. “Rock and Roll All Nite” by KISS – From the album “Dressed to Kill” (1975). Another classic KISS anthem featuring Simmons on vocals. Fun fact, it was actually the live version of the song that eventually became the popular version of the song.
  3. “Calling Dr. Love” by KISS – From the album “Rock and Roll Over” (1976). Simmons delivers a commanding vocal performance on this hard-rocking track.
  4. “War Machine” by KISS – From the album “Creatures of the Night” (1982). Simmons’s powerful vocals drive this heavy-hitting song. This song was actually co-written by Bryan Adams of Cuts Like A Knife and Summer of ’69 fame!
  5. “Deuce” by KISS – From the album “KISS” (1974). Simmons sings lead vocals on this track, which has become a staple of KISS’s live performances. “You know your man is working hard…he’s worth a… “
  6. “Christine Sixteen” by KISS – From the album “Love Gun” (1977). Simmons’s distinctive voice shines on this catchy rock tune. This song was famously sampled by Tone Lōc in his 1989 song “Funky Cold Medina”.
  7. “I Love It Loud” by KISS – From the album “Creatures of the Night” (1982). Simmons co-wrote and sings lead vocals on this anthemic track. Probably some of the heaviest drums in any KISS song..and that chorus is a highlight at any live KISS show.
  8. “Unholy” by KISS – From the album “Revenge” (1992). Simmons delivers a gritty vocal performance on this heavy metal song. The song is considered by many fans to be a return to the Demon persona by Gene Simmons in the 90s.
  9. “Domino” by KISS – From the album “Revenge” (1992). Another great track from the “Revenge” album featuring Simmons on lead vocals. This has a killer groove and a fairly naughty bridge spoken by Gene.
  10. “Goin’ Blind” from the album “Hotter than Hell” (1974) is a bit of a deep cut but has a great groove and amazing guitar solo! The Melvins did an amazing cover it as well.

These songs showcase Gene Simmons’s vocal prowess and his significant contributions to the sound and legacy of KISS.

Top 10 Ace Frehley Songs


Ace Frehley, best known as the former lead guitarist of the iconic rock band Kiss, has a number of great songs throughout his career, both as a solo artist and with Kiss. With the release of Ace Frehley’s latest song and album I thought it was a good time to RANK the Top 10 Ace Frehley’s Songs Ever!

  1. “New York Groove” – A cover originally recorded by Hello, this song became one of Frehley’s signature tracks from his 1978 solo album.
  2. “Shock Me” – A classic Kiss song written and sung by Frehley, known for its electrifying guitar solo and catchy chorus.
  3. “Cold Gin” – Another Kiss classic written by Frehley, known for its gritty riff and memorable chorus.
  4. “Rocket Ride” – A high-energy track from Kiss’ “Alive II” album, featuring Frehley’s distinctive guitar work.
  5. “Rip It Out” – A standout track from Frehley’s 1978 solo debut album, showcasing his songwriting and guitar prowess.
  6. “Into the Void” – A heavy-hitting song from Frehley’s 2009 album “Anomaly,” displaying his continued ability to deliver powerful rock anthems.
  7. “Strange Ways” – A dark and intense song from Kiss’ “Hotter Than Hell” album, featuring Frehley’s unique guitar style.
  8. “Snow Blind” – A track from Frehley’s solo album, “Ace Frehley,” known for its infectious groove and memorable guitar melodies.
  9. “Rock Soldiers” – A hard-hitting anthem from Frehley’s 1987 album “Frehley’s Comet,” reflecting on his struggles with addiction and his journey to sobriety, with powerful guitar solos and a memorable chorus.
  10. “Into the Night” – A standout track from Frehley’s 1987 album “Frehley’s Comet,” featuring heartfelt lyrics and melodic guitar work that highlight his versatility as a musician.

These songs represent just a glimpse into Ace Frehley’s impressive catalog of music, showcasing his talent as both a guitarist and songwriter.

Pink Floyd – Album Ranking w/ Brendon Snyder

Pink Floyd has released 15 studio albums. Join me as I count down all 15 studio albums by the legendary band Pink Floyd.

Pink Floyd, an iconic and revolutionary band emerged from London in the 1960s, fundamentally shaped the landscape of progressive and psychedelic rock. Their sonic experimentation, thought-provoking lyrics, and groundbreaking albums defined them as pioneers in the music industry. Formed by Syd Barrett, Roger Waters, Richard Wright, Nick Mason, and later joined by David Gilmour, the band’s early years under Barrett’s influence gave birth to their psychedelic sound, marked by whimsical lyrics and avant-garde compositions. However, after Barrett’s departure due to mental health issues, Waters became the primary creative force behind the band, steering them toward conceptual albums that delved into themes of alienation, societal pressures, and the human condition.

Pink Floyd’s discography boasts monumental albums like “The Dark Side of the Moon,” “Wish You Were Here,” “Animals,” and “The Wall,” which not only showcased their musical virtuosity but also their ability to craft cohesive narratives within their music. Their live performances were as much a visual spectacle as a musical one, incorporating elaborate stage setups and visual effects that amplified the thematic depth of their music. With their distinctive soundscapes, introspective lyrics, and willingness to push the boundaries of what music could achieve, Pink Floyd remains an enduring influence on generations of musicians and continues to captivate audiences with their timeless and ethereal compositions.

Album Review: Blood Lightning ‘Blood Lightning’ (heavy metal)

Join Pete Pardo for a review of the delf-titled debut album from Boston based metal act Blood Lightning.

Speaking of heavy metal…

The 1980s was a golden era for heavy metal, birthing many iconic albums. Here’s a list of ten influential albums from that decade:

  1. Metallica – “Master of Puppets” (1986): A defining album not just for Metallica but for the entire thrash metal genre.
  2. Iron Maiden – “The Number of the Beast” (1982): This album propelled Iron Maiden into international stardom with its powerful anthems.
  3. Judas Priest – “British Steel” (1980): Known for its iconic tracks like “Breaking the Law” and “Living After Midnight,” it’s a classic of the era.
  4. Slayer – “Reign in Blood” (1986): An intense and aggressive record that solidified Slayer as one of the founding bands of extreme metal.
  5. Black Sabbath – “Heaven and Hell” (1980): With the addition of Ronnie James Dio, Black Sabbath crafted an album that reinvigorated their sound.
  6. Motörhead – “Ace of Spades” (1980): A high-octane, fast-paced record that epitomizes Motörhead’s unique brand of heavy metal.
  7. Megadeth – “Peace Sells… but Who’s Buying?” (1986): Featuring complex riffs and politically charged lyrics, it’s a cornerstone of thrash metal.
  8. Dio – “Holy Diver” (1983): Ronnie James Dio’s debut solo album that became an instant classic with its powerful vocals and memorable songs.
  9. Ozzy Osbourne – “Blizzard of Ozz” (1980): Ozzy’s first solo release, showcasing Randy Rhoads’ exceptional guitar work.
  10. Anthrax – “Among the Living” (1987): An influential album in the thrash metal scene, characterized by fast-paced, aggressive tracks.

These albums not only defined the era but continue to influence and inspire heavy metal artists to this day.

DIAMANTE – 1987 (Official Video)

Official music video for ‘”1987″ by DIAMANTE

DIAMANTE is a powerhouse of raw energy and unapologetic rock charisma, fronted by the magnetic and fiercely talented vocalist Diamante Azzura. Hailing from Boston and raised in Los Angeles, this hard rock outfit combines infectious melodies with hard-hitting guitar riffs and anthemic choruses, creating a sonic landscape that fuses the rebellious spirit of punk with the unbridled energy of modern rock. Diamante’s distinctive vocals effortlessly shift from soulful croons to impassioned screams, injecting each song with a blend of vulnerability and unyielding strength. Their electrifying stage presence and lyrical depth draw audiences into a world where empowerment, heartache, and resilience collide, solidifying DIAMANTE as a rising force in the contemporary rock scene.