In major gig news Foreigner are coming back to the UK and even more exciting is the news they are coming back to Wolverhampton! Yes, they are playing Nottingham Royal Centre on 7th and the Wolverhampton Civic Hall on 15th April 2014, and guess what they aren’t doing this lightly as they are taking Europe and FM out on the road with them! A quality night of melodic rock awaits, I’ll see you all there albeit very very drunk! WOOOOO HOOOO!
It has been announced that Trixter have had to pull out of this year’s Firefest Festival. One of the members was unable to commit to the show due to personal reasons and the remaining members didn’t wish to do the show without the full original line-up. The band has stated they really hope to play the UK sometime in the near future (Firefest 2014?). H.E.A.T has been named as the direct replacement for Trixter and they will perform in the slot left vacated by them.
Firefest have announced a download exclusive of the Firefest Anthem ‘Church of Rock N Roll’ by the band In Faith. It costs 99p and all profits will be used to fund the festival. Follow the link for details on how to get your hands on the song!
Canadian rockers Coney Hatch have released their first digital single from their forthcoming album for the track ‘Blown Away’. The album Four is out on September 27th via Frontiers Records. Check out the video for ‘Blown Away’ below.
I’m very sad to tell you that Skyfest has been cancelled. The organisers behind the melodic rock festival originally scheduled for September 21st and 22nd at the Intake club in Mansfield haven’t given an official reason but have assured those who have brought tickets will receive their refunds quickly. Unofficially the word is there was a lack of advance tickets sales and given the huge line-up that made financing the festival without a dramatic loss to the funders was almost impossible. It is a real shame this fest didn’t get off the ground as it would have been a nice addition to the melodic rock live scene.
To add to the gig cancellation misery the Rage Of Angels with support from Moritz and Daylight Robbery @ the Slade Rooms in Wolverhampton on the 12th of September, has also been cancelled.
Jeff Scott Soto has announced he is hard at work on a new solo album due in spring 2014 to mark his 30th year in the music biz. This time around he has decided to go heavy and deliver a more metallic album harking back to his early days, whilst of course remaining as melodic as possible! As a big fan of JSS, I’m very much looking forward to what this very versatile musician is going to give us next!
French AOR band Chasing Violets has unveiled a brand new website, check it out at http://www.chasingviolets.fr/. Chasing Violets are fronted by sisters Sarah and Melissa Fontaine and are playing the HRH AOR festival next March, and I’m very much looking forward to seeing them perform!
Iconic rock and roll wild man Michael Monroe has a new album out now called Horns & Halos. The legendary Hanoi Rocks front man also hits the road later this year including a performance at Hard Rock Hell and more importantly a gig at The Slade Rooms in Wolvo on December 3rd!
Brighton Rock have just released a video for ‘Creatures Of The Night’. A reimagining of the classic KISS song which was recorded for a charity album called A World Without Heroes check it out below.
The latest House Of Shakira album Pay To Play will be released via Melodic Rock Records on September 23rd!
Silent Rage front man Jesse Damon has a solo album Temptation In The Garden Of Eve ready for release in September. It will be released via AOR Heaven and features the following songs ‘Save The World’, ‘Black Widow’ and ‘Angel In The Starlight’. Jesse has co-write the album with Paul Sabu who also plays bass and it also features contributions from Keyboardist Eric Ragno and Drummer Pete Newdeck.
I stumbled across a new band from Finland BST who have just released a video for ‘She Doesn’t Love You Anymore’, check it out below. Epic melodic rock with shades of Crimson Glory! They should have a new album out soon!
Pure AOR rockers State Of Salazar have a new album due out on Frontiers Records later in the year. For now though you can enjoy their first video for the track ‘Lost My Way With You’.
Look out for a new EP from DNA entitled Life. The band features David Reed Watson (Rage Of Angels) on vocals and guitarist Alexandre Santos who write all the songs. Joining them is guitarist Neil Fraser (Ten/Rage Of Angels) Mikael Carlsson on Bass and drummer Joao Colaco. You can hear the first single from it ‘Broken Hero’ below.
Spanish AOR band Guru released their second album White earlier this summer on Melodic Rock Records. You can check out the video for ‘Straight To Your Heart’ below
It has been announced that guitarist Dan Mitchell has left UK rockers TEN. Dan has left due to a recurring wrist and lower arm problem which makes it very difficult for him to perform standing up so is unable to commit to the bands future live commitments. The band is currently searching for a replacement lead guitarist.
Tony Mills has officially announced his departure from Norwegian melodic rockers TNT. He joined the band in 2006 and has toured extensively with the band, recorded three albums and has decided to leave the band to free up more time to pursue other projects. Mills has a solo album in the works and a possible new and final Siam record in the works. You can check out a new solo song from Tony in the video below for the song ‘Girls of Norway’.
Modern melodic rockers Degreed have just released a video for their song ‘What If’. It’s taken from their new album We Don’t Belong which is out now. I absolutely love this band and the new album is without doubt one of the best of the year, enjoy the video.
Faith Circus returns with a new album Turn Up The Band which will be released in October via Melodic Rock Records. The CD version will include a bonus disc of their debut album totally remixed and with two bonus tracks featuring a duet with Robin Beck! They now feature a new guitarist H.K Rein and bassist Christer Ottesen.
Spanish Melodic Rockers Airless have also signed to Melodic Rock Records. They are set to release a Best Of album via the label in early 2014.
Doogie White & La Paz have issued a video for the track ‘The Good Old Days’ from their brand new album The Dark and The Light. The video features some studio footage as well as some vintage footage from back in the day of the band. Check it out.
Ted Nugent will release a new double live CD Ultralive Ballisticrock via Frontiers Records in October.
Hartmann has a new ‘Best Of’ album in the works and it will see the light of day via the Avenue of Allies record label on September 20th.
Def Leppard will release a new live album Viva Hysteria via Frontiers Records in October. It’s a live album recorded during the bands 11 night residency in Las Vegas earlier this year. The album will feature the Hysteria album played in full with two bonus tracks; the DVD will feature the same track list plus also some bonus footage and goodies.
Iconic Christian melodic rockers Stryper will release an all new album No More Hell To Pay through Frontiers Records in November.
Brazilian singer songwriter Joey Summer has announced an indefinite hiatus from the music biz. This news comes shortly after the release of his third English album Even Saints Are Sinners.
Brummie vocalist David A Saylor has new solo album out at the end of September called Kiss Of Judas; it will be out on the AOR Boulevard record label. Saylor is best known for his work with PUSH UK and the last effort from Greek melodic rockers Wild Rose. The sound bytes I’ve heard on the teaser trailer make it sound rather tasty to me!
Popular melodic rock vocalist Paul Laine has gone Country?! What the hell! Keep an eye out for Laine’s new Country/Rock outfit Dark Horse who have their debut album out in January 2014. This country outfit will have strong rock and pop leanings and guess what it’s produced by Danger Danger’s Bruno Ravel! This promises to be very interesting indeed.
Legendary vocalist Graham Bonnett (Alcatrazz / Rainbow / Impelliteri) will be performing at The Robin in Bilston on March 17th just a few days before his headline show at the HRH AOR festival a few days later. It’s been billed as a ‘Catch The Rainbow’ show so I expect most the set list to consist of songs from his tenure with the iconic rock outfit.
FM have made a promo video for ‘Runaway Train’ which features on their recently released Rockville II album. The video was filmed at The Box venue in Crewe.
Keep your ear to the ground for a new album from genre newbie’s Sparklands! These guys hail from Holland and there fantastic debut album Tomocyclus is out on September 20th via Avenue Of Allies.
Melodic Rock Records have announced another new signing this time it’s Marc Ferreira who many will know from Goodbye Thrill as well as his solo records. His new album 5 will be released worldwide in early November.
Another release from the Avenue Of Allies label in September is The Theander Expression, you can check out their album Strange Nostalgia from 20th of September.
Founder member of Blue Oyster Cult Alan Lanier has passed away aged 67 while battling COPD in Hospital, he retired from the band in 2006. R.I.P Alan
Promising pop rockers Last Breath have just released a new video for the song ‘The Weekend’. The video has rated PG due it featuring ‘Lingerie models’, so expect plenty of cleavage….hmmmm….boobies!
Legendary AOR band Starship have signed to Loud and Proud Records for their first album in a long time, so there is a lot of pressure on Mickey Thomas and Co to produce the much anticipated goods! The album Loveless Fascination will be released on September 17th, their first studio album in 20 years!
Ex Journey and Tall Stories front man Steve Augeri has released two brand new songs for download from all the usual suspects! So get looking for ‘For The Rest Of My Life’ which was co-written with Frederik Bergh (Street Talk) and Rob Moratti (Final Frontier) and also ‘Behind The Sun’. Augeri plans to keep releasing individual songs via download sites until he has enough songs before releasing a physical edition of the album.
Emerging Scandinavian melodic rockers Dynazty have signed with Spinefarm Records. Their new album for the label is due out in early 2014 and is definitely one for fans of label mates Reckless Love and Santa Cruz!
Ultra melodic Finnish rockers Reckless Love release their third album Spirit on September 3rd via Spinefarm records. They have also made a new promo video to accompany it, check out ‘So Happy I Could Die’ below!
Chicago based 7th Heaven have parted ways with their latest singer Anthony Fedorov who sang on the band’s latest album Synergy. Previous singer Northern Ireland born Keith Semple will return to the band so they can fulfil all their upcoming live shows, he won’t be coming back to the band full time but will cover them until a full time replacement is found. Semple is best known to us in the UK as one of the winners of TV show Pop Stars: The Rivals and became part of the boy band One True Voice – that series is famous for launching the careers of Cheryl Cole and Girls Aloud. Thankfully Semple has come a long way since that manufactured boy band crap!
Rock Candy’s latest batch of re-mastered goodies include – Diamond REO – Dirty Diamonds, Aviary – S/T, Ian Thomas Band – Glider and The Runner, Vandenberg – Heading For A Storm, Tangier – Four Winds and Faster Pussycat – S/T.
New signing to Kivel Records – No Love Lost will be releasing their self titled album at the end of September to coincide with their performance at this year’s MelodicRockFest in Chicago.
Another new signing announced by Kivel Records is Maxx Explosion a three piece outfit featuring House Of Lords members Jimi Bell, BJ Zampa & Chris McCarvil. This is not to be confused with Bell’s other band on Kivel records Breakwall whose album is slated for a 2014 release. Maxx Explosion’s debut album ‘Forever’ which was co-produced by none other than Don Dokken will also be released by the label at the end of September.
French AOR’sters Paris have just released a promo video for ‘Every Time You Walk Away’. This was taken from their debut album Only One Life which was released by Avenue of Allies in April. If you were a fan of that album you’ll be pleased to learn they are already hard at work on a new album due for release in 2014.
Diamond Dawn who caused a stir earlier this year have another promo video out for their song ‘Standing As One’. It was filmed during their summer 2013 tour, and is from their Overdrive, check it below.
Skintrade featuring vocalist Matti Alfonzetti have finished recording their new album and it’s now been mixed. No details on release dates just yet, but they do keep updating their facebook and youtube pages!
Well that’s all the juicy bits of news from the past month; I’ll be back in a month’s time with even more news and gossip from the world of AOR and melodic rock.