Baton Rouge

Thu
30
May

Rock Candy Latest - BATON ROUGE, GODDO & AVIATOR

Categories: 
 
6 new Rock Candy releases are available now from the website www.rockcandyrecords.co.uk
 
GODDO ‘S/T’ CANDY 395
 
THERE’S SOMETHING quite compelling about Goddo. Like Max Webster, they enjoyed a reputation as one of the most magnetic and quirky Canadian hard rock bands operating in the late 70s. Employing an off-kilter psyche and a penchant for the absurd, Goddo’s high octane brand of tough-guy rock was further enhanced by some of the most amusing lyrics of the era. The man mostly responsible for this intriguing direction was bassist and main songwriter Greg Godovitz. Like a contemporary court jester his brand of wit and wisdom cast an exceptionally warm glow on the Canadian music scene, even if the content failed to secure huge commercial rewards. As a former member of seasoned Canadian rockers Fludd, he departed that band to create a brand new vehicle following his own vision; melodic hard rock with enough lee-way to include quirky detours. Although primarily a supercharged high octane power trio, they also included elements of jazz and crushing blues rock. Godovitz together with drummer Doug Inglis and guitarist Gino Scarpelli set about recording their debut album in Montreal, unleashing one of the most striking Canadian debut albums of all time. Issued in early 1977, and housed in a superbly illustrated gate-fold cover, the album kicks off with ‘The Bus Driver Blues’ a lyrically hilarious track written about the band’s previous drummer who left the group to drive a school bus. Other tough-nut rockers include ‘Drive Me Crazy’, ‘Let That Lizard Loose’ and ‘Hard Years’. Of course the jewel in the crown is the jazz tinged ‘Under My Hat’, a song complete with a truly memorable hook and menacing vocals from Greg.
 
SPECIAL DELUXE COLLECTOR’S EDITION. Fully Remastered Audio, Two bonus tracks, 16 page full colour booklet, 3,500 word essay, new interview with Greg Goddovitz and enhanced artwork with unpublished photos.
 
TRACK LISTING: 1. THE BUS DRIVER BLUES 2. DRIVE ME CRAZY 3. LET THAT LIZARD LOOSE 4. I’M LOSING YOU 5. LET IT SLIDE 6. TWELVE DAYS 7. UNDER MY HAT 8. HARD YEARS BONUS TRACKS; 9. THE BUS DRIVER BLUES (remix) 10. UNDER MY HAT (remix)
 
  
 
GODDO ‘WHO CARES’ CANDY 396
 
WE’VE SAID IT on numerous occasions before but Canadian rock has always offered up something quite unique and impressive. We don’t know if it’s something to do with the water supply or that their musician’s brains are wired differently, but Canadian recordings are, more often than not, overflowing with a depth of complexity that dwarfs similar acts from other countries. It’s a strange phenomenon for sure but entirely true and Goddo are no exception to that rule. Formed as a crushing power trio during the midseventies, led by polymath Greg Godovitz on bass, the band quickly rose to prominence on their debut album; laying down a foundation of meaty riffs and intriguing songs laced with acerbic lyrics and the sort of wit that still raises a chuckle. But let’s not for one moment suggest that Goddo were a comedy act; far from it. The serious musical assault and intense lyrical delivery suggests a band with a keen eye on the bigger prize. ‘…WHO CARES…’, recorded in Toronto, and issued in 1978, showcases a band on the move. Whilst their debut album made a firm case for pummelling hard rock, ‘…WHO CARES…’ lays down the law in similar fashion but also pushes the envelope, introducing more complex arrangements and acoustic parts, like the cello accompaniment to ‘Tough Times’. But if its meat and potatoes rock that you desire look no further than ‘Cock On’, ‘Too Much Carousing’ and – the could have been hit single - ‘Sweet Thing’. This album is one of the cornerstones of Canadian rock, make no mistake.
 
SPECIAL DELUXE COLLECTOR’S EDITION. Fully Remastered Audio, Eleven bonus tracks, 16 page full colour booklet, 3,500 word essay, new interview with Greg and enhanced artwork with unpublished photos.
 
TRACK LISTING: 1. TOUGH TIMES 2. COCK ON 3. YOU CAN NEVER GO BACK ANYMORE 4. DROP DEAD (THAT’S WHO) 5. SWEET THING 6. ‘PEOPLE IN THE NEWS’ 7. THERE GOES MY BABY 8. OH CAROLE (KISS MY WHIP) 9. ONCE AGAIN 10. TOO MUCH CAROUSING BONUS TRACKS: 11. TOUGH TIMES (orchestral dub) 12. GREG DISCUSSES WHO CARES 13. ONCE AGAIN (alt mix) 14. SWEET THING (alt mix) 15. TOUGH TIMES (acoustic mix) 16. THERE GOES MY BABY (7” edit) 17. DROP DEAD (THAT’S WHO) (alt mix) 18. TOO MUCH CAROUSING (Instrumental dub) 19. GREENSLEEVES 20. HITCHCOCKIAN OUTTAKE 21. ZOMBAT GREETING
 
 
GODDO ‘AN ACT OF GODDO’ CANDY 397
 
THE GREAT THING about the record business during the 1970s was the fact that labels allowed bands to develop organically, often over several albums. For those of us with an interest in more obscure acts it provides a great education and Goddo were no exception. A predominantly hard rock, Canadian, power trio who’s musical growth was spectacular, chomping their way through crunchy blues-based rock tracks and introducing some highly refined twists and turns such as horns and even an orchestra. ‘An Act Of Goddo’, is the culmination of the band’s insatiable appetite for pushing the envelope. Recorded and mixed not in their native Canada but this time in Orlando, Florida, the music is enhanced by a choice selection of tracks, written with one singular intention, to astound the listener. Produced, once again, by Thomas Morley-Turner (actually a pseudonym for band leader Greg Godovitz) the record benefits from some terrific tracks, including tough nut rockers such as ‘So Walk On’, ‘Take Care’, ‘Work It Out’ and arguably the band’s greatest song, the English/French lilting ballad ‘Chantal’. Most spectacular however is the opening, and closing, instrumental ‘Anacanapanacana’, a musical palindrome performed by the Florida Symphony Orchestra consisting of a mash up of melodies found on the rest of the album. It’s a great introduction and one that sets up – and ends - the rest of the record perfectly. There’s no question that this was Goddo’s finest hour, leading us to one singular conclusion, that they were one of Canada’s best kept musical secrets.
 
SPECIAL DELUXE COLLECTOR’S EDITION. Fully Remastered Audio, 16 page full colour booklet, 3,500 word essay, new interview with Greg Goddovitz and enhanced artwork with unpublished photos.
 
TRACK LISTING: 1. ANACANAPANACANA 2. SO WALK ON 3. CHANTAL 4. YOU’RE SO CRUEL 5. THE VERDICT’S IN 6. SIGN ON THE LINE 7. ROSIE (JUST HANG ON) 8. TAKE CARE 9. WORK IT OUT 10. ANACANAPANACANA
 
AVIATOR ‘S/T’ CANDY 381
 
WE OFTEN CHAMPION overlooked albums, music that was, for one reason or another, sidelined in favour of more commercially successful records and, as we’ve proved time and time again, there is often no difference between those that sold millions and those that sold next to zero. Sadly, that is the great shame of the music business but we at Rock Candy are always happy to right wrongs and shine a light on injustice. Aviator, from the US East Coast, was formed by musicians with a history of time spent in various class acts, including Barnaby Bye, Blues Magoos, Balance and Network. The band was fronted by world-class vocalist Ernie White and managed by Tommy Motola (later the CEO of Sony Music), who secured them a deal with RCA records. Produced, at Electric Lady studios in New York, by man of the moment Neil Kernon (Kansas, Autograph, Dokken), to exacting standards, their album was issued in 1986, making an immediate impact on those who heard their tough, yet melodic, hard rock. Despite the excitement amongst the cognoscenti it appears that, due to machinations beyond their control, the record was left to flounder and given very little promotion. Crammed full of superior songs, such as ‘Front Line’, ‘Back On The Streets’, ‘Don’t Turn Away’ and ‘Never Let The Rock Stop’, the album is unquestionably one of the greatest slices of heavy AOR ever recorded. If you’ve never heard it then it’s time to sit back and be amazed.
 
SPECIAL DELUXE COLLECTOR’S EDITION. Fully Remastered Audio, 2 Bonus tracks, 16 page full colour booklet, 3,500 word essay, new interview and enhanced artwork with unpublished photos.
 
TRACK LISTING: 1. FRONT LINE 2. BACK ON THE STREET 3. DON’T TURN AWAY 4. WRONG PLACE WRONG TIME 5. NEVER LET THE ROCK STOP 6. COME BACK 7. MAGIC 8. CAN’T STOP 9. TOO YOUNG 10. EVERY SCHOOLBOY KNOWS 11. THROUGH THE NIGHT BONUS TRACKS: 12. WOMAN IN LOVE 13. HOLDING ON
 
 
BATON ROUGE ‘SHAKE YOUR SOUL’ CANDY392
 
1990 WAS FAST becoming a crucial time for traditional hard rock music. Although the tide hadn’t entirely turned there was a feeling amongst the music media that times were due for a change. It was an odd time as a number of great bands had been signed and were all readying albums for release so the competition was fierce. Baton Rouge were one such act that had the opportunity to establish a power base before the sea change in public taste built a wall of indifference towards the swagger and strut of classic rock. Originally formed in Louisiana during the mid-80s, using various names, the band, led by guitarist Lance Bulen and vocalist Kelly Keeling, opted to move to Los Angeles in 1987, where the scene was ripe for aiding and abetting young bands. They would not be disappointed as their manager hooked them up with seasoned producers David Foster and Mike Clink (Clink was finishing up the Guns N’ Roses ‘Appetite…’ album at the same time) who helped them record a set of impressive demos. The band’s appearances on the LA club circuit soon attracted record company attention, eventually signing with Atlantic records and being taken under the wing of label founder Ahmet Ertegun. ‘Shake Sour Soul’ was produced by early Bon Jovi co-writer Jack Ponti, in New Jersey, and issued in 1990 to positive reactions. The album hits hard in the melodic rock style, boasting strong tracks such as ‘Walks Like A Woman’, ‘Bad Time Comin’ Down’ and ‘Baby’s So Cool’. It wasn’t surprising that reaction was favourable, affording the band a good following with solid airplay, and establishing them as ones to watch.
 
SPECIAL DELUXE COLLECTOR’S EDITION. Fully Remastered Audio, 16 page full colour booklet, 3,500 word essay, new interview and enhanced artwork with unpublished photos.
 
TRACK LISTING: 1. DOCTOR 2. WALKS LIKE A WOMAN 3. BIG TROUBLE 4. IT’S ABOUT TIME 5. BAD TIME COMIN’ DOWN 6. THE MIDGE (INSTRUMENTAL) 7. BABY’S SO COOL 8. YOUNG HEARTS 9. MELENIE 10. THERE WAS A TIME (THE STORM) 11. HOT BLOOD MOVIN’ 12. SPREAD LIKE FIRE
 
 
OVER KILL ‘UNDER THE INFLUENCE’ CANDY405
 
WHENEVER THE TERM thrash metal is mentioned most people instinctively drawer a connection with the American West Coast and in particular San Francisco’s Bay Area, where the likes of Metallica, Megadeth and Exodus found fame. However, America’s East Coast scene had, by the mid 80s, also produced a batch of acts, including Anthrax and Nuclear Assault. Both scenes proved to be fertile breeding grounds for the genre and acted as magnets for newer groups to join and feed off the excitement. Overkill, originating from New Jersey, was one such act, throwing themselves into the ring at a time when anything in the world of thrash metal was possible. Signing to the much loved and influential Megaforce label, they cut two well received albums prior to unleashing ‘Under The Influence’ in July 1988. Recorded in Upstate New York and produced by well respected studio wizard Alex Perialas (mixed by Michael Wagener), who had worked with Testament, Anthrax and Nuclear Assault, the album refined the band’s style and sound, turning them from an interesting curio into world-class contenders. Overkill’s secret ingredient was not just their intense sonic assault, but an inherent ability to condense riffs into an almost symphonic cacophony, employing a strong melodic sensibility imbued with thick crunching guitar work. The songs resonate with muscle and melody, a trait not often found in the majority of thrash metal outfits, and the production is crisp and clean, lending the sound a decidedly sophisticated sheen.
 
SPECIAL DELUXE COLLECTOR’S EDITION. Fully Remastered Audio, 16 page full colour booklet, 3,500 word essay, new interview with Bobby Ellsworth and enhanced artwork with unpublished photos.
 
TRACK LISTING: 1. SHRED 2. NEVER SAY NEVER 3. HELLO FROM THE GUTTER 4. MAD GONE WORLD 5. BRAINFADE 6. DRUNKEN WISDOM 7. END OF THE LINE 8. HEAD FIRST 9. OVERKILL III (UNDER THE INFLUENCE)
 
 
Tue
14
Jul

KELLY KEELING - Mind Radio (Review)

information persons: 
Produced By: 
Alessandro Del Vecchio
Running Time: 
54
Release Date: 
July 3
Released: 
Worldwide
Musical Style: 
Melodic Rock
Label: 
Frontiers
Artist: 
Release Year: 
2015
Categories: 
 
Musically speaking, there are no surprises for singer Kelly Keeling’s new solo album. This is another Alessandro Del Vecchio project, with the added bonus of Kelling actually participating in the songwriting process.
There are also 3 new songs from the Baton Rogue writing trio of Keeling/Jack Ponti/Lance Bulen. These three songs are from the failed reunion attempt, that directly lead to this solo album being commissioned instead.
As is always the case, Alessandro does a fine production and mix job, and the AdelV Band are on song as usual. I’m a big fan of Ale and yes, I’ve read many comments about the ‘production line’ aspect of having one artist behind a number of albums, but as long as the quality remains high, consumers will vote with their wallets.
Ale’s been on a hot streak of late, with Revolution Saints, LRS and Fergie Frederiksen to name just three. That streak hasn’t ended with Kelly Keeling, but his long term average might take a small hit.
 
This is a solid enough album, but I can’t quite put my finger on why it’s not another knockout. To simplify it, I think perhaps the songs aren’t quite there. The use of three different writing teams for the albums 12 tracks gives the album 3 different distinct sounds. The two Robert Sall tracks are great AOR (as always); the 3 Baton Rouge tracks are typical of their sound and then there are the Alessandro tracks.
But more importantly, I don’t think Kelly’s overall vocal performance is as committed as one might expect.
 
Songwise, Isolated Man is a nice mid-tempo melodic rock tune with a rising chorus.
Sunshine Over Me I like mainly because it reminds me of the Toto song Caught In The Balance – it’s that kind of moody guitar driven track.
The anthemic ballad Still Need You In My Arms is one of the stronger tracks present.
Written In Fire is the first of the three Baton Rouge tracks and shows an immediate change in style to match the BR of old.
Love Will Tears Us Apart is pretty good also. Frozen Time is the first of two songs from the pen of Robert Sall – good European melodic rock tunes both of them and totally within the Work Of Art style. Just without the ultra-smooth vocals of Lars Safsund.
Monkey House is the second BR track – a moody rocker with a heavy organ presence. Kelly’s vocals however really don’t match the energy of the song.
Ride Out The Storm is the second Robert Sall track – again, another classy AOR tune.
Who Do You Run To is the third BR track and the most aggressive. A dry, organic hard rocker that’s ok, but isn’t what I would rank in the same class as classic Baton Rouge material.

Individually there are some fine songs here and I particularly like several, but put together as an album, it’s not as cohesive as it should be.
Keeling sounds a little underdone and under enthusiastic. This will have to be for fans of Baton Rouge and Keeling to check out and decide for themselves.
 
Score: 
75
 
Tue
02
Jun

US singer KELLY KEELING Returns With 'Mind Radio' on Frontiers in July

Artist: 
Release Year: 
2015
Friday, July 3, 2015
Categories: 
 
Frontiers Music Srl is pleased to announce the release of KELLY KEELING'S new solo album entitled "Mind Radio" on July 3rd in Europe and July 10th in North America.
 
Kelly Keeling is a Louisiana-born multi-instrumentalist in high demand as songwriter, vocalist, guitarist, bassist, keyboardist, and producer. He began his musical career with Baton Rouge with whom he released 3 albums. Later he joined Blue Murder’s 2nd album, “Nothin but Trouble,” wrote and recorded 2 albums with John Norum (Europe) following  extensive tours of Norway & Sweden. Keeling joined Heaven & Earth for “Windows to the World,” then 3 albums and world tour with Michael Schenker’s MSG, 4 albums with Carmine Appice's Guitar Zeus, featuring legendary guitarists Brian May, Yngwie Malmsteen, Neal Schon, Slash, Zak Wilde, Steve Morse, Paul Gilbert, and Vivian Campbell. After 3 years as lead vocalist touring and recording with Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Keeling returned to independent projects including the recent album, Red Zone Rider, featuring UFO guitarist Vinnie Moore and Scot Coogan.
 
Amid all these collaborations, Kelly debuted as a solo artist with the album "Giving Sight to the Eye" which was released in March 2005, featuring Roger Daltrey, Denny Laine, Kerry Livgren, Carmine Appice & Tony Franklin. 
Now in 2015, Kelly Keeling is back with another solo album entitled, "Mind Radio," which is produced by the very-much-in-demand Alessandro Del Vecchio (Revolution Saints, Bonfire, Graham Bonnet, Hardline etc.).  
 
 "This album is a culmination of the last 5 years on a journey to revive my old band amidst considerations of not playing music anymore for a while due to a much needed break" says Kelly. "But during the process I found direction, actually traveling and ending up all over the world on tour with Baton Rouge, and as a solo artist at various festivals and venues. This album Mind Radio is very honest, walking the listener through what I endured on this journey. I love my band. Alessandro Del Vecchio! What a genius that guy is. I've produced and been a part of many albums but this guy is so brilliant! What a great musician singer, writer, Producer and Brother to me. I’m so very happy to have him onboard as he surely simplified a focused direction, taking a load of effort off of me through a masterpiece of work which seems to have taken lifetimes to get here."
 
With songwriting contributions from Robert Sall (RIDE OUT THE STORM, FROZEN IN TIME), VON GROOVE's Michael Shotton, guitarist Mario Percudani and Del Vecchio himself. Musically and sonically, this is a brilliant Melodic Rock album showcasing the impeccable vocal talents of one of the most underrated Hard Rock singers of our time. Also included on the album are three songs written by Keeling together with his BATON ROUGE cohorts Jack Ponti and Lance Bulen (WRITTEN IN FIRE, MONKEY HOUSE and WHO DO YOU RUN TO).
 
Enjoy an album trailer here:
 
 
"Mind Radio" tracklisting includes: This Love Our Paradise; Isolated Man; Sunshine Over Me; Still Need You In My Arms; Written In Fire; Take Me To The Limit; Love Will Tear Us Apart; No Man's Land; Frozen In Time; Monkey House; Ride Out The Storm; Who Do You Run To.
 
Kelly Keeling - lead vocals
Alessandro Del Vecchio - keyboards, backing vocals
Mario Percudani - electric and acoustic guitars
Anna Portalupi - bass, fretless bass
Alessandro Mori - drums
 
Produced by Alessandro Del Vecchio
 
 
 
 
Subscribe to Baton Rouge