Categories
Reviews and Suggestions

CD Review: Count’s 77 “Soul Transfusion”

In today’s music scene, the radio is full of overly commercialized music. What exists today can largely be categorized as nothing but pop music. Sometimes, you have to go far out of your way to find real Rock and Roll music these days. Thankfully, there are still those musicians out there that are keeping the feeling of real Rock and roll alive. You just have to know where to look for it. One band that is keeping the spirit of real Rock and Roll alive is Las Vegas-based band Count’s 77.

Like the band’s name suggests, Count’s 77 is a Hard Rock band that focuses their musical energy on creating real Rock and Roll. Consisting of bassist Barry Barnes, drummer Paul Disibio, keyboardist Tommy Paris and the twin guitar team of John Zito and Stoney Curtis and lead singer Danny “Count” Koker, the band’s main musical influences come from the Hard Rock era of Rock and Roll. Most importantly, the band lists Thin Lizzy, Foghat, Led Zeppelin and the Allman Brothers as major influences on the band’s sound.

Having already released a self-titled album, Count’s 77 have returned with a new album of music. The brand new album from Count’s 77 is entitled Soul Transfusion.

Soul Transfusion from Count’s 77 begins with the track “Summer of ‘77”. Just like “Summer of ‘69” from Bryan Adams, the new track from Count’s 77 is written as a musical remembrance of days gone by. In this case, lead singer Danny Koker sings of the musical highlights of yesteryear that helped to shape the tastes of the members of the band. Mixed with a musical style that would have been right at home on Power Rock radio formats in the eighties, “Summer of ‘77” features a strong, driving pace to the beat of the song. The vocals from Danny Koker and the powerful guitar solo from Stoney Curtis help make the song very strong.

The new release from Las Vegas’ Count’s 77 continues with the song “Hard Rock Band”. Like the title of the song suggests, “Hard Rock Band” pays tribute to all those who continue to create music in the same style as those bands that are now grouped into the Classic Rock radio format. The first few bars of the song bring to mind “Get Back” from the Rolling Stones before Count’s 77 takes the song in a much stronger and more original direction. “Hard Rock Band” slows the pace of the album down slightly. However, the music produced by the guitars and the rest of the instrumentation makes sure no energy is lost on the track.

Count’s 77 pick up the energy level of the music with the track “Do You Feel Me”. While the first two track on their latest release of Soul Transfusion fall into Rock and Roll, “Do You Feel Me” is straight-out Heavy Metal. With a style that incorporates the older Heavy Metal sound from the seventies that bands like Deep Purple and Steppenwolf helped to influence, “Do You Feel Me” is more about the energy of the music and not the speed that some Heavy Metal contains. The energetic delivery of the music creates a track that would be perfect for inclusion on a mixtape for use on highway cruising alongside songs like Golden Earring’s “Radar Love” or Steppenwolf’s “Born to be Wild”. “Do You Feel Me” from Count’s 77 feels like a classic track right from the very first note.

One standout track from Count’s 77’s new album of Soul Transfusion is the title track of the release. The song “Soul Transfusion” finds the six members of the band creating a song that incorporates a slightly more modern feel to the Hard Rock they create than the previous tracks. The song once again features a very driving feel to the pace of the music while the music itself contains stylistic elements that bring the song into a Modern Rock format more than a Classic Rock format. That modern approach proves that while the members of Count’s 77 have plenty of older influences to draw from, newer ones are also there to help keep the band’s music fresh. “Soul Transfusion” is one of the strongest tracks on the release and it is one song that will easily grab the attention of the listener.

The feel of the Soul Transfusion release from Count’s 77 changes drastically on the song “Evil You Could Do”; while the majority of the album contains a hot and blistering quality to the Hard Rock/Heavy Metal that the band produces, the song “Evil You Could Do” finds the band incorporating a large dose of the Blues into the Blues-Rock track. The track seems just a little bit reminiscent of something from Carlos Santana. Having listened to several tracks where the band delivered a strong Rock and Roll approach where the music comes at you with unrelenting energy the Blues-Rock on “Evil You Could Do” seems to come out of nowhere. At the same time, the extreme change of musical direction helps to show off the talent and versatility of each of the members of the band.

With singer Danny Koker and the rest of Count’s 77 being based in Las Vegas, it should come as no surprise that the band would end up producing a song that is influenced by that city. “Sin City Boogie Man” is a track that brings back the full throttle energy of the band’s musical approach. With the subject matter being as dark as it is, the song could be classified as “Horror Rock”. The track features plenty of energy that comes from a multi-guitar “axe attack” that adds to the driving nature of the song. “Sin City Boogie Man” ends up being one of the more entertaining tracks on the Soul Transfusion release.

Through the album’s eleven tracks, Soul Transfusion from Count’s 77 makes good use of musical influences that are both modern and a little bit older. The album contains plenty of songs that will end up satisfying and Rock and Roll lover’s need for Good Ole Rock and Roll.

To check out the music of Count’s 77, click HERE for the video to the band’s song of “Summer of 77”

For more information, check out the band’s record label, Shrapnel Records.

To check out Soul Transfusion from Count’s 77, click on the album cover below:

album cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also, check out Danny Koker and the rest of his crew at Koker’s custom motor shop called Count’s Kustoms AND the television show they are part of, “Counting Cars” which can be found on the HISTORY channel.

Categories
Artists & Bands

Live Photo Essay: Thin Lizzy

Thin Lizzy
Sound Academy
Toronto, Ontario
March 30, 2011

Founded by drummer Brian Downey and charismatic bassist Phil Lynott, Thin Lizzy found itself punctuated by a revolving door of hugely talented and Godly axemen including the likes of Scott Gorham, John Sykes, Brian Robertson and the legendary Gary Moore.

Categories
Rock News

The (international) music festivals are coming! First up: France’s Hellfest

Don’t you just love summer? Bars open up their patios, the weather is wonderful and, perhaps most excitingly, music festivals are in full force. We’ll of course be covering everything from NXNE to Vans Warped Tour, Osheaga and Heavy MTL, but I thought we’d kick off this pre-season with a spotlight on an international festival – HELLFEST.

Categories
Features

Wig Wam frontman talks pre-show rituals, Norway, Non Stop Rock n’ Roll and, yes, Gene Simmons’ ability to sell horseshit

If you’re a fan of glam rock and if the likes of KISS, Alice Cooper, Van Halen and Thin Lizzy fill your CD player (um, I mean mp3 player), but you’re not familiar with Wig Wam then, let me be the first to tell you, you’ve been missing out – big time.

When Glam (vocals), Teeny (guitar), Sporty (drums) and Flash (bass) got together to jam in 2000, it wasn’t long before they turned their just-for-fun endeavor into a full-fledged glam rock revival extravaganza i.e. Wig Wam. The band hit the studio, dug out all the leather and spandex they could find, and set out on the road to conquer Europe and, seemingly appropriate, Japan.

Having just released their fourth in-studio album entitled Non Stop Rock n’ Roll, frontman Glam took some time to catch up with The Rock and Roll Report and give some honest, and witty, insights into everything from the disappointing state of Norway’s music scene, to the futility of drugs, to Gene Simmons’ potential ability to sell horseshit (and who could disagree with that?!)

Categories
Reviews and Suggestions

CD Review: Sixteen Layers “I Am No One”

As a journalist and an editor who’s involved with several music magazines, I get a lot (and I mean a LOT!) of music sent my way for review and lately I’d been feeling awfully bummed out about all the predictable, emotionless tracks I was hearing. Fortunately, it turns out that it’s true what they say; sometimes you really do find the greatest things when you’re not looking. When I headed out last Saturday to catch a show my friend’s local Montreal band was headlining, I hadn’t the slightest inkling that I’d be so utterly blown away by the out-of-town supporting act, which was visiting us all the way from Ireland. And when I say blown away; I mean it. These guys were mind-blowingly, effing fabulous.

Who am I speaking of? In case the title hasn’t already give it away, it’s Sixteen Layers. Comprised of Niall Donnelly (Vocals, Rhythm Guitar), John Colbert (Bass Guitar), Dom Muldoon (Lead Guitar) and Tim McGrath (Drums), this Irish four-piece has a true knack for writing well-crafted, unforgettable songs and their debut, “I Am No One,” is (thankfully!) just as tight and exquisite as their live set.

Categories
Reviews and Suggestions

Man Called Noon Tell You What Time It Is

Man Called Noon – Broke and Beaten Down
Self Released

Though I know very little about the band itself, the imagery Man Called Noon uses in their name is very interesting to me. That it comes off sounding something like a reference to character in a Clint Eastwood spaghetti western almost makes sense as the band’s music has the defiant air of rebellion about it that I like while retaining a coolness which is sure to draw people to their music. I am guessing the title may refer to the picture on the CD of a down and out man playing guitar in an alley, While it seems to have little to do with the music, there are undercurrents in every song regarding the struggles of the everyman to succeed in life, in love and to find happiness while still retaining a healthy self-image and not succumbing to the temptations and problems life throws at you. As someone like Bruce Springsteen sings of the life of the everyman so do the musicians behind Man Called Noon, albeit in their own way. Led by Tony Giamichael (lead vocals, guitar) and Brian Sonnek, (lead guitar, background vocals) the band boasts a solid one-man rhythm section in producer/engineer Mike Burns (drums/bass). The trio is bolstered by Katie Dingle who adds some atmospheric cello to a couple of tracks.

Categories
Features

Sweden’s ‘Dirty Passion’ love their own music, Guns N’ Roses, Motley Crue not so much – but best of all, they’ll always speak their mind

dirtypassion-03Perhaps it’s just me, but if I had the ability to change one thing about today’s rock scene, I’d bring it back to the ‘80s. Say what you will but I’m a sucker for the era when rock was raw, dirty, unapologetic and, well, mind-blowingly good.

Sweden’s Dirty Passion seem to share my outlook. Formed in 2006 in Malmö, Sweden, Emil Ekbladh (Vocals), Christopher Olsson (Guitar), Björn Wilander (Bass) and Markus Winberg (Drums) draw from the greats of that very scene, infusing their musical stylings into their own tracks to end up with a sound that is simultaneously nostalgic and modern. And, of course, always rockin’.

In early 2010 Dirty Passion will be touring Europe with Faster Pussycat and Enuff Z’ Nuff, and before they set off Emil took some time out to talk to The R&RR about all things rock.

Categories
Reviews and Suggestions

CD Review: Thin Lizzy – Still Dangerous: Live at The Tower Theatre Philadelphia 1977 (VH1 Classic Records)

Keep your eyes peeled for leprechauns and their pots of gold as it’s St. Paddy’s Day this week and everyone’s Irish! The green beer (and green puke) will flow like a river all week as people cast off gloomy thoughts of the economic meltdown caused by the greedy bastards at the banks and on Wall Street, who were aided and abetted by George Bush’s inept leadership and his clandestine ties to Halliburton and Big Oil. Can you tell I am a little angry? Well, let’s just keep this little review here based around music and though I feel like fighting as much as any Irishman around this time of year due to reasons I’ve mentioned above (and also inebriation), the best thing to do is to grab some music by one of Ireland’s best rock bands and rock out with your Shamrock out!. And, hey, before you can say Bono, it’s not those U2 wankers I am talking about. It’s the original Irish rock band: hard rockers Thin Lizzy who have just released a new live album recorded back in 1977 featuring an unreleased performance from a time when the band was at the top of its’ game.