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Jack Black paying homage to Ronnie James Dio
Jack Black paying homage to Ronnie James Dio

After what seems like the longest winter in recorded history, summer music festival has finally arrived for those of us in the greater Boston area. Few and far between are the occasions for those of us who are into music with a harder edge to actually cover one of these festivals, as they’re typically awash in a dizzying array of alt-pop and alt-country and neo-folk acts. Thank God, then, for Tenacious D.

Backed by a three-piece band that included none-other than Brooks Wackerman of Bad Religion fame on the drums, the acoustic-metal duo of Jack Black and Kyle Gass, served as headline act on one of the Boston Calling Music Festival’s two stages, essentially serving as direct support for festival headliners (and hometown favorites) the Pixies.

Gass and Black took to the stage in full-on, cocksure strut as they prepared to lay waist to what was, admittedly, a very vocally supportive crowd. There’s a tendency amongst music critics and fans alike to overlook Tenacious D as a gimmicky joke band, a sort of faux-metal Smothers Brothers. To do so, however, is to ignore both the legitimate homage that Black and Gass pay to the metal world, and to the legitimate rock chops that the duo and their backing band bring to the table.

From the opening notes of the band’s now fourteen-year-old debut single, “Tribute,” Black and Gass led the band through a high-powered set that never really provided them the opportunity to remove their collective foot from the gas pedal, save, maybe, for the set’s humorous and well-performed jazz-fusion interlude. By the time Gass and Black had bid the band adieu and closed the set with the hilariously – dare I say – sweet track “Fuck Her Gently,” they had triumphantly won over all but the most callous of doubters. Case in point: yours truly had gathered in main stage’s photo pit alongside forty or fifty other photographers from varied media outlets great and small in the photo pit in anticipation of the Pixies set by the time “Fuck Her Gently” began, and halfway through the song song, ¾ of the pit, and the crowd at-large, were singing along in full-voiced unison.

Check out our photo gallery from the Tenacious D set at Boston Calling below.

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Ted Nugent joins Rage, Jimi Hendrix’s “Machine Gun” cover in the works

Posted by Metal Riot on Wednesday, April 1, 2015 at 12:40 PM (PST)


Citing Zack de la Rocha’s foot dragging insistence on inactivity with one of the biggest and most socially relevant bands of all time, Rage Against The Machine have been forced to move forward…with Ted Nugent.

“Dude, Zack just wants to make a rap song cameo like once every four years and, y’know, a lot of political shit has been crazy the last fifteen or however long it has been since we made an album. I mean, he even recorded with Trent Reznor and DJ Shadow and where is all of THAT stuff?” shrugs drummer Brad Wilk. “And with Nick Menza in Sabbath now, I need a steady gig. Like, I was just playing fill in for the Smashing Pumpkins, bro. Shit’s kinda fucked up. What else are we supposed to do?”

When pressed over if they think long time fans might be confused that Nugent could send a mixed message, “bi-partisanship” was mentioned by RATM’s publicist.“We think he has cross-over appeal, way more than Chris Cornell ever did.”

“Finally oppressed whites will have a voice through the music of rock n’ roll that was stolen from Chuck Berry,” says an ecstatic Nugent. “It’s time to take the power back!”

“When Zack said he was doing that “One Day As A Lion project even we didn’t think he meant actually ONE day,” adds Wilk. 

With Obama a year away from leaving office and Hillary’s email-gate doing Ted’s job for him, Nugent feels it seems like he could relax and reach across the aisle a bit finally. “Shit, Ted Cruz was born in Canada so I guess the time has come to relax a little bit.,” said the Nuge after downing a unicorn/moose hybrid with a spear. “I’m honestly a little bit tired of being the “old crazy guy”. In a way, the Zapatista Army of National Liberation spend more time in the woods than I ever have and that’s to be admired. And obviously discrimination in America is never going away, so I might as well prove that I can rap better than any Muslim mongrel. Besides, Obama trying to reach across the aisle instead of swatting us GOP like bugs when he had a mandate after we tricked y’all into going into Iraq just led to us running Congress and the Senate, haha.” 

When we tried to reach Tom Morrello for comment he just tweeted at us: “Fuck it.”

Bassist Tim Commerford was too busy climbing shit to comment.

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Hard Rock n 2014 had great highlights (no dyed hair joke intended). From Charm City Devils making a bigger name for their brash selves to Chevelle‘s thunderous Terminal 5 show (and tightly wound single “Take Out the Gunman” ) it was a solid year. Buckcherry have also been hitting the road and maintaining a dedicated tour ethic, while Pop Evil  put out a very cool LIVE version of a “Trenches” video thanking fans for the solid support given the nearly unstoppable ascent of Onyx. Diablo Blvd had the best goth hard rocker “Follow The Deadlights” this side of The 69 Eyes and the Belgians killed it opening for Life Of Agony in New Jersey. Best of all is Black Star Riders new record The Killer Instinct, which keeps alive the Thin Lizzy legacy into 2015 and MORE than ensures/proves the genre of hard rock is still worth the fuss.

To see some shots of a few of said bands from recent live concerts shot by our photographer friend Catharina Christiana and to immerse yourself in a river of rock, see BELOW.

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Hot Re-Mastered LP: Judas Priest’s “Defenders Of The Faith”

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Wednesday, December 10, 2014 at 8:54 AM (PST)

Coming off an era which saw several Judas Priest albums that have gone down as some of the greatest in the entire history of heavy metal (namely, 1980’s ‘British Steel’ and 1982’s ‘Screaming for Vengeance’), the band from Birmingham knew that their next release had to ‘deliver the goods,’ to cement their standing as the leaders of metal. And deliver they did, with their platinum-certified 1984 release, ‘Defenders of the Faith,’ which spawned such headbanging classics as ‘Freewheel Burning,’ ‘Jawbreaker,’ ‘The Sentinel,’ ‘Some Heads Are Gonna Roll,’ and ‘Love Bites.’

And on March 10, 2015, a newly expanded three-CD version of the album will be unleashed via Columbia/Legacy, which includes the original ten-track album remastered by producer Tom Allom, and a complete live recording from the ‘Defenders’ tour, recorded at the Long Beach Arena in California, on May 5, 1984.

The 21-track concert (split up over two discs) perfectly balances the then-new material from the group’s ninth studio offering overall, including such classics as ‘Metal Gods,’ ‘Breaking the Law,’ ‘Sinner,’ ‘Electric Eye,’ ‘The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown),’ ‘Victim of Changes,’ and ‘You’ve Got Another Thing Coming,’ among many others.

As the band states in the liner notes to the reissue, “It’s 30 years since we released Defenders of the Faith – we’re very proud to say it has become a classic that’s beloved by Priest fans throughout the world”

Click HERE for more information and rock hard, ride free.

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Randy Rhoads birthday tribute open house in Burbank

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, December 4, 2014 at 6:57 AM (PST)


Start the day with some positive shred news! Legend Randy Rhoads! Got a press release this morning I thought I’d share for you fans out there of the iconic Blizzard of Ozz guitar solo king.




 HOLLYWOOD, CA (December 3, 2014) – Come celebrate the Late, Great Randy Rhoads birthday with his family this week at Kathy Rhoads D’Argenzio and her husband Richard D’Argenzio’s wine tasting room in Burbank.

The Randy Rhoads Birthday Tribute weekend starts Thursday, December 4th and ends Saturday, December 6th – open from 3pm to 9pm daily. This will be a weekend to remember for all fans and friends alike. You will get to meet the whole Rhoads family, taste the Randy Rhoads wine, and see personal memorabilia that has not been shown for public viewing.

The D’Argenzio winery, has for several years, produced a special wine in the name of Randy Rhoads with all proceeds of this wine going to fund the Randy Rhoads Foundation to assist kids in learning music.

A special note from the Rhoads family:

 The Rhoads family wishes to thank you all for all the heartfelt support and love for Randy. We also thank you for keeping his memory alive. Happy Birthday to my loving son and our dear brother~

 Delores Rhoads, Kelle Rhoads and Kathy Rhoads D’Argenzio~


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Happy Bday Ozzy

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Wednesday, December 3, 2014 at 9:32 AM (PST)


The one thing to make the time of year that Dimebag and John Lennon were shot better, besides the birth of Christ and subsequent holiday season, is that Dec. 3rd is Ozzy‘s birthday. Happy 66 Sir Lord Ozzy and thanks forever for “Bark At The Moon”, “Iron Man” and “Never Say Die.” Rock n roll forever!

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Gus G. rad “I Am The Fire” expanded edition riff salad

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, October 7, 2014 at 8:04 AM (PST)

Due out November 4th in North America **digital only**, this expanded version of ‘I Am The Fire’ includes 4 bonus tracks, in addition to the standard 12 tracks that were released earlier this year to critical acclaim. GUS G. handles all guitar, bass and keyboards on the album, and is joined by a roster of friends and guests that helped bring his vision to fruition: drummers Jeff Friedl (A PERFECT CIRCLE, PUSCIFER, DEVO) and Daniel Erlandsson (ARCH ENEMY), bassists David Ellefson (MEGADETH), Billy Sheehan (MR. BIG, DAVID LEE ROTH) and Marty O’Brien (TOMMY LEE, WE ARE THE FALLEN), and vocalists Mats Leven (CANDLEMASS, ex-YNGWIE MALMSTEEN/THERION), Blake Allison (DEVOUR THE DAY), Michael Starr (STEEL PANTHER), Alexia Rodriguez (EYES SET TO KILL), Tom S. Englund (EVERGREY), Jacob Bunton (ADLER) and Jeff Scott Soto (TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA, ex-JOURNEY). ‘I Am The Fire’ showcases a well-balanced mix of active rock, classic hard rock, traditional metal and guitar-driven instrumentals, taking listeners on a diverse journey through GUS G.’s soulful playing.

For a preview of ‘I Am The Fire’, be sure to check out the official video for the album track “My Will Be Done (feat. Mats Leven)” Below!

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Show review: Life Of Agony, A Pale Horse Named Death 9/13/14

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, September 16, 2014 at 9:45 AM (PST)


“Shed my skin and start again”

It was thrilling to attend the sold out Starland Ballroom Life of Agony and A Pale Horse Named Death show (w/Antwerp openers Diablo Blvd bringing their blend of Danzig-influenced hard rock). It is no secret I am one of the biggest LOA and Type O fans in the world and have been blessed to interview Mina, Sal and to have met Joey Z on different occasions. This band saved my life and I know I am not alone among you readers out there in vocalizing that.

That said, be it their name, the serious nature of their blend of melodic alternative rock and old school hard core and metal or just timing, Life Of Agony are both huge AND underrated. No one knew for sure if they would ever come back now that singer Kieth Caputo transitioned to become Mina Caputo, but from the first note of the band’s set the place erupted and the room was nothing but love. It was completely life affirming and rock n roll as hell.

Click HERE for more.

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Starland Life Of Agony show will be epic

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Friday, July 18, 2014 at 10:38 AM (PST)


From Mina Caputo’s Facebook:

Tix on sale now.!!! Let’s sell this bitch OUT today.!!!

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Fun Rage meets Zep Mash Up from Sister Sparrow at Mountain Jam

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Friday, June 20, 2014 at 12:04 PM (PST)


So Mountain Jam in my Upstate. NY neck of the woods is fun and all, but decidedly granola oriented. I grew up and still live in the Woodstock, NY area, so unless my homies in The Felice Brothers are playing, I am usually not into the hippy-centric fests as much as I’d enjoy, say, Deathwish Fest this year,

Mountain Jam had The Roots one year, which was super dope. Generally it has the jammier likes of your Umphrey’s McGee type bands and isn’t a place you’d expect to hear much hard rock, unless Les Claypool is in a frisky mood and busts out some “Damn Blue Collar Tweekers” on that ass.

Anyway, I didn’t go this year but just saw a fun mash up live performance by a very energized Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds. What can I say? I now have a crush on Arleigh Kincheloe. Her stage presence and voice in this clip are awesome and I like how she genuinely just looks fuckin’ sexy as hell and in charge without it being some gimmick. The talent is obvious and it should be more about that than someone’s gender. But yeah, she’s totally a babe!

If you can step back from the death metal to enjoy some hard rock (and a face melting harmonica solo near the end of the number), you’ll have fun with this, promise.

At first I was like,”Aww, the dudes in the man are making white guy blues faces when they get into it”, but by the end they are killin’ it and just really obviously rocking out hard.

Click HERE and enjoy.

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As The Penises Burn: Poor Randy Blythe

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Tuesday, June 17, 2014 at 10:38 AM (PST)

Randy Blythe

I don’t think Lamb of God are gonna make a documentary about this one. This reminds me of when that fat chic sued McDonald’s for spilling coffee that melted her clitoris, but that may be an urban legend. Maybe Randy saw the One Direction/LoG video MetalSucks posted.

Via Randy Blythe’s Instagram:

WARNING: THE FOLLOWING POST IS OF A GRAPHIC PERSONAL NATURE & CONTAINS A TALE OF ABJECT MISERY. I DON’T EVEN KNOW WHY I’M POSTING THIS. I MUST BE HIGH FROM PAIN STILL. There are moments of extreme physical pain in some of our lives that we will never, ever, forget. Tonight I had one of those moments (this picture I took of my friends Jimmy & Mike of EYEHATEGOD has NOTHING to do with this story, but I needed a photo & they do have a record called “Take As Needed For Pain”). The sun was setting & it was beautiful evening as I road along the coast to the grocery store, still in my surf trunks & sipping on a fresh mug of boiling hot black coffee. I was listening to some mellow piano music & making a right turn when I made the tragic mistake placing the mug between my barely covered legs. As I turned my truck, happily humming along to the mellow piano music on my stereo, suddenly there was a searing white hot explosion of agony in my crotch. The lid of my mug had come loose, and liquid caffeinated FIRE had covered my, well…it had covered my penis. I briefly lost control of my truck, swerving into the lane of oncoming traffic, barely missing another truck, before quickly pulling into a nearby parking lot to try & make some sense of this atrocity I had committed against myself. I felt like I was going to throw up for a good minute or two, then I regained control & started returning home to do what I knew what I had to do. I had to put him on ice. I do not normally talk to my penis, he does not have a nickname or anything like that, but if there ever was a time for encouraging words to my lifelong companion, it was now. The words I said out loud to him as I painfully drove us slowly home went along these lines: OH GOD, DUDE. OH MY GOD, THAT HURT LIKE HOLY FUCK. HANG IN THERE DUDE. OH GOD, HANG IN THERE. WE’RE GONNA MAKE IT. DON’T GIVE UP HOPE. OH MY GOD, DUDE. OH GOD, HANG IN THERE, BRO. I must have looked like a crazy man. When I hit home, he went in a glass of ice water for a bit. He will recover, I have faith. Go ahead & laugh- everyone else I’ve told did, including my wife. This day is now a wash. Goodnight.


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Interview: Mina Caputo – Confessions of a Dangerous Mind

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Sunday, May 11, 2014 at 7:48 PM (PST)


Sometimes people we think we know very well are only showing a fraction of who they really are. It could take awhile, but eventually the things we hide away may become unbearable and need to surface. For years hard rock and alternative fans loved the rich voice of Keith Caputo of Life of Agony, not knowing that the amazing lyricist and musician who wrote the songs and poetry they responded to was locked in an intense internal battle about wanting to come forward as transgender.

In 2011 the dam broke and the world was introduced to Mina Caputo. Ever since childhood Caputo had felt repressed and different, but being raised in a strict Sicilian household and then becoming famous in a hugely popluar but macho hard rock band left Mina feeling afraid to embrace her inner feminine side. A string of terrific solo albums found Caputo pretty much publicly transitioning via empowered (albeit shocking) music videos like 2008’s “Crawling” or “Got Monsters”. Now thankfully LOA are continuing forward with Mina and defying stereotypes of what they have to be. It’s a glorious thing.

Now having released her first solo album as a transgender woman (after many great solo records as Keith), the acclaimed vocalist spoke to me about her journey and the making of the breathtaking As Much Truth As One Can Bear.  Songs like the stunning “Over The Moon” or the wistful “Cracks in the Mirror” detail alienation, strength of character and a willingness to further explore music of all kinds.

Click HERE to read the interview.

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Deep Cuts: Life of Agony

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Sunday, May 11, 2014 at 4:19 PM (PST)

Horns Up Rocka Joey Z Peter Steele

We are so pleased that Life of Agony are reuniting for summer European shows with Marilyn Manson and Machine Head, giving the finger to anyone in the heavy world too freaked out by Mina Caputo’s transition to give respect to one of the best bands of all time, that we are doing an LOA deep cuts for ya.

Ever since I first heard “Bad Seed” on Vassar College radio years ago, I was hooked on the dark guitar of Joey Z, the trauma laced emotionally overpowering yet comforting vocals of Caputo, the pounding drums of Sal and the supportive bass work of Alan. This band saved my life and should be a part of any hard rock diet.

Click HERE to see which 3 cuts from this legendary live act and group of true New York originals made the cut.

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Chevelle announce summer tour supporting “La Gárgola”

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, May 8, 2014 at 7:08 PM (PST)


Chevelle have achieved their highest ever charting album with new release La Gargola,  the hard rock band’s seventh banger. Always one of the more actually talented popular hard rock bands, the Chicago based act have taken a break from touring to let drummer Sam Loeffler have some time with his newborn son. Fans needn’t worry however, as Chevelle will return in the early summer to kick some ass at a theater near you.

I love these guys. My band antidote 8 even covered “The Red” for shits and giggles at my recent birthday show in my hometown. That was a lot of fun, so I am betting the actual band’s current tour supporting a great new record and seven records worth of big riffs to choose from will be a real gas. La Gargola has some real killers, from the soaring and amazing guitar work of the risque “Choking Game” to the adrenalized thump of “Under the Knife” or the somber and dreamy “Twinge”. Pete Loeffler retains his usual sense of hooky insistence akin to Maynard Keenan circa Undertow, though the trio have long since proved they are their own beast.

Click HERE for tour dates:

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For U.S. fans of Judas Priest that simply cannot wait for the July 15th release date of their latest classic metal album, ‘Redeemer of Souls,‘ there is some relief on the way. On Tuesday, April 29th, the title track from the album will be available for purchase via iTunes ( and other digital service providers. And a clip of the song (plus the single’s artwork) is now available to sample at the band’s website.

If you are wondering what to expect from the mighty Priest on their forthcoming album, guitarist Glenn Tipton has set the record straight. “Sometimes in the past we may have come under fire for being too adventurous musically – so we have listened!! From start to finish ‘Redeemer of Souls’ is 13 songs of pure classic Priest metal!!”

There are only a select number of bands that have accomplished what Judas Priest has throughout their career (as well as having served as a stylistic influence on such a wide variety of bands). Soon the group – singer Rob Halford, guitarists Glenn Tipton and Richie Faulkner, bassist Ian Hill and drummer Scott Travis – will be offering up more classic Judas Priest metal with the release of ‘Redeemer of Souls’


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