September 2013, marks a significant memory in the annals of Heavy Metal; it marks the Thirty-Year Anniversary of the release of the seminal, cornerstone heavy metal album by STEELER. Continue reading
Photo credit: (c) 1986 Michael Richard Sneeberger
Former original founding member of W.A.S.P., as well as bassist for the seminal 1980’s heavy metal band STEELER, SIN, SURGICAL STEEL, BURN and others, Rik Fox will be among the featured all-star jam performers at “A Fight For Life – Rockin’ For Dave Brown – A Cancer Benefit” tonight (August 16th) in Los Angeles.
Fox confirmed that he will perform two songs with BITCH lead vocalist, Betsy as well as amazing guitarist Chris Cardenas and drummer, Scandall West. Fox most recently performed as a featured guest with his former STEELER bandmate, Ron Keel and the band KEEL at the legendary Whisky a Go-Go club in Hollywood, this past June, to a roaring crowd which devoured the two classic Steeler songs ‘Cold Day in Hell’ and an acoustic version of the ballad ‘Serenade.’ This was the first time the two STEELER band mates shared the stage together in thirty years, making it a heavy metal night of record. Among those also slated to perform at the benefit, are Roy Z. (Bruce Dickinson, Rob Halford), Mandy Lion (World War III), Armored Saint, and L.A. favorites DC4.
Drummer Dave Brown, (who is known for his work with Sound Barrier, another 1980’s metal band) is currently battling colon cancer. While Fox was a member of STEELER, both bands headlined the Los Angeles rock club and metal rock circuit together. Sound Barrier, was a break-though, all-black heavy metal band, that stormed the Los Angeles music scene in 1980 after signing with MCA Records. The band was dropped by their label after low album sales and insufficient radio airplay. Some of the members of Sound Barrier later went on to perform with such notable bands as Fishbone and Mother’s Finest.
“To me,” Fox stated, “ it seems that it didn’t matter that Sound Barrier was a black metal band; the crowds still seemed to rock like crazy right along with them, especially when I was with them headlining the same larger venues STEELER headlined at such as The Country Club, in Reseda, California.”
“It’s just a shame that they weren’t able to push that envelope beyond the local level scene and break through to the big time; they certainly had what it took amongst all the other bands competing for the same brass ring” Fox said. Yet, during that time, there was still a problem with racism for black rock musicians until bands like Living Color began to change the face of racism in rock music. Nowadays multi-cultural tolerance has become the mandatory norm as it should be, no matter what ethnicity you are, everyone should have an equal shot at the dream(s) of their life and goal(s).
Fox also echoed a statement from fellow rocker Ann Boleyn of the legendary band HELLION:
“We all know someone who has been stricken or affected by cancer and those of us in the metal and hard rock community should give of ourselves when one of our fellow rockers is down and in need of help, and support and honor those with cancer, and those that have passed from it.”
Fox is featured in several books including well-known writer-author Ken Sharp’s upcoming coffee table book “KISS, Nothing to Lose; KISS, The Early Years” for his association with the band from its inceptive days before Ace Frehley was even a member; Fox knew KISS drummer Peter Criss, before he joined KISS. Fox is also an in-demand interview subject and was featured in NPR’s Charlie Schroeder’s best-seller “Man of War; My Adventures in the World of Re-enacting” with regard to Fox’s passion for and representation in America, of his Polish noble ancestry and being the first officially recognized portrayal and representation of the legendary Polish winged knights cavalry of the 17th century central Europe. “Cross blending both, the Polish Heritage and metal rock is a concept that is only very large in Europe and in Poland itself; it hasn’t yet caught on here in America yet, however, I receive an amazing amount of praiseworthy accolades for doing so from all my fans,” stated Fox. “They all think it’s a very unique and noble thing to do, blending and celebrating ones’ ancestry, and wrapping it in a rock package.”
Fox was also one of the featured interview subject in author Darren P. Upton’s famous tell-all unofficial Bio: “W.A.S.P.; A Sting in the Tale”, in which Fox was tapped for his small, yet integral part of the bands’ early history, and revealed some missing puzzle pieces to the early memory of the bands’ history for the fans. “At first,” Fox stated, many W.A.S.P. fans didn’t believe me, especially the part about that it was me who created the band’s name, and before the internet, it was hard to prove my story, but, once I was able to produce the evidence; the first W.A.S.P. demo on which I recorded and co-wrote one song, and also all the photos from the bands’ first photo session with Motley Crue photographer Don Adkins Jr., suddenly, many of the former hating W.A.S.P. fans began to turn around and now embrace my part of the bands’ history”, although it is still disavowed and dismissed by bandleader Lawless himself.
In recent days, Fox has been featured on the History Channel’s cable show ‘Museum Secrets’ with regard to his education about the subject of the Polish winged hussar knights, marking a milestone, due to it’s being the first time the subject was covered respectfully in the English language. Fox says: “Poland is a country who has never received its due credit for its vast contributions to world history and is continually subject to insensitive and propaganda-filled misinformation, incorrectly perpetuated by an anti-Polish agenda in the world. I see it and experience it all the time, so I educate those people in an attempt to make it better.”
Fox is also very proud to have been a part of the ‘classic’ STEELER line-up, not only for paving the way for many of the bands who followed their format in both appearance and sound, but also for being on the first and largest selling independently- released heavy metal album of all time. “Although the RIAA never officially certified it, I’m told and we believe, that it surpassed the Gold Album status some years ago,” Fox states. “I also recorded a debut album with the Phoenix, Arizona metal band SURGICAL STEEL, but it never got finished and it should be released for posterity; I got to record with guest drummer Mick Brown of DOKKEN and we just worked together like a well-oiled machine. It was a high-point in my career, but so was also being invited onstage to perform with the late Ronnie James Dio, who succumbed to stomach cancer in May of 2010, for a live rendition of the Hear n Aid hit song ‘We’re Stars’, twice. I believe it was recorded on video and hopefully should be released soon. I also got to perform ‘Wild Thing’ with the late Sam Kinison and his all-star band back in the beginning of the 1990’s.” “Currently I’m writing my Biography of my years in rock from the 1970’s New York Max’s Kansas City/ C.B.G.B.’s scene through the 1980’s to today…it promises to be a real eye-opener.”
Bringing it all home, Fox stated that ‘it’s a privilege and an honor to be attached and associated with this benefit for Dave Brown, I’m only too glad to be invited to perform and be involved in my small part in helping his cause. I hope all the talent involved will help make it a smashing success for Dave.”
If you are in the Los Angeles area stop by and support a great cause and enjoy some great music. $15.00 to get in and doors open at 7:00 p.m. Paladino’s is located at: 6101 Reseda Blvd., Reseda, California 91356. (818) 342-1563 or visit their website You can also read more about Dave and his battle with cancer, here
Motley Crue singer Vince Neil underwent surgery to remove kidney stones after the band were forced to cut their Sydney, Australia show short to rush Vince to the hospital. Continue reading
Ladies and gentlemen, I have some alarming news for you. While browsing DarkLyrics.com, I discovered a terrifying fact: that approximately 100% of metal songs made in the ’80s are about rape. That percentage might seem high, but I assure you it is only mildly exaggerated. Whereas nowadays bands who write songs about rape tend to depict it as brutal and unpleasant (all the while expecting us to revel in its brutality and unpleasantness, which is a huge problem in and of itself), bands of the ’80s seemed to take a lighthearted, “boys will be boys” approach to it. I honestly can’t tell which is more gross.
Take for example, Van Halen’s “Romeo Delight” from their 1980 album Women And Children First. And I quote,
Can’t take it anymore
I’m takin’ whiskey to the party tonight, and I’m looking for somebody to squeeze.
I ain’t looking for somebody to fight
Baby, don’t get uptight
The rabbit hole goes much deeper than “Romeo Delight,” of course. While the, uh, “protagonist” of the song sounds like a pushy asshole, he doesn’t appear to make any outwardly rapey overtures. Telling an apparently reluctant/unwilling woman not to be uptight gives me some serious pause though.
Poison’s “I Want Action” (form their 1986 debut Look What The Cat Dragged In) is a lot more direct.
These girls hit me where it hurts
I can’t wait to get my hands on them
I won’t give up until they give in
Now, first of all, the long-legged short-skirted people in this song are schoolgirls, as is explicitly stated in the first verse. Second of all, someone needs to go back in time and hose Bret Michaels down.
If I can’t have her, I’ll take her and make her
Don’t even get me started on Mötley Crüe’s “All In The Name Of…” from their 1987 classic Girls, Girls, Girls.
She’s the reason, the reason that I can’t sleep
You say illegal
I say legal’s never been my scene
So right off the bat, you have a protagonist who knows that what he’s doing is wrong but doesn’t care. Excellent. The rest of the song implies that the 15-year old actively entices him later on, so at least he’s not forcing her to do anything, right? Wrong, you sick fucks. A quick Wikipedia search shows that Nikki Sixx and Vince Neil wrote “All In The Name Of…” together — Sixx was 29 and Neil was 26 at the time of the album’s release. Two grown ass men sat down together and wrote a song about a 15-year old seductress.
Curiously, “All In The Name Of…” is just the tip of the ephebophilic iceberg. “Statutory Date” by Twisted Sister is exactly what you’d expect from the title.
She’s every inch a woman but there’s years to go
Someone help me, make me forget
Or I’ll do something that I’ll regret
The age of this “heart stoppin’” girl is never stated, but she’s referred to as a “little girl,” “statutory date,” and “jailbait” throughout the song, so your guess is as good as mine. I can’t seem to figure out who wrote this little ditty but all the band members were in their 30s when it was released.
Speaking of “jailbait,” have an excerpt of “Jailbait” by Motörhead, written by yet another team of adult men:
Still tied to momma’s apron strings
I don’t even want to know your age
I’m just happy you’re backstage
I’m beginning to think the headline should be “Why Was Everyone In The ’80s A Pedophile?” instead.
In today’s From The Vault their are quite a few metal birthdays being celebrated this week: Continue reading
In today’s From The Vault, I wanted to add a Top 10 list of the albums I would consider my Top 10 albums of the 80′s. This wasn’t easy because there are so many albums that I wanted to include and when I asked many of my friends what their Top 10 would be, I heard so many different answers. After thinking about it for awhile, I finally settled on the albums below:
10. Shout at the Devil – Motley Crue
Released in 1986, Shout at the Devil is the second album by Motley Crue that really put them on the map. From the opening track, In The Beginning, I was instantly hooked and never tire of listening to this album from start to finish.
9. Spreading The Disease – Anthrax
Released in 1985, this is the second album from Anthax and the first with singer Joey Belladonna and bassist Frank Bello. The album features the classic Madhouse, A.I.R. and my personal favorite, Armed and Dangerous.
8. The New Order – Testament
Released in 1988, The New Order is the second album by Testament that made me an instant fan. The album features such great songs as Trial By Fire, Into The Pit and the Aerosmith cover Nobody’s Fault.
7. Ride The Lightning – Metallica
Released in 1984, this is the second album by Metallica that features such great classics as For Whom The Bell Tolls, Creeping Death and Fade To Black. This is the last album Dave Mustaine receives song credit on and the first to feature guitarist Kirk Hammett.
6. Peace Sells…But Who’s Buying? – Megadeth
Released in 1986, this album is the second album by former Metallica guitarist Dave Mustaine and his band Megadeth. From the opening track, Wake Up Dead to Peace Sells to The Conjuring, Megadeth covers a range of topics from cheating boyfriends/husbands to witchraft and devil worship to politics.
5. Operation Mindcrime – Queensryche
Released in 1988, this the third album by Queensryche which tells the story of a recovering drug addict. Nikki had become disillusioned with society and got involved with a group headed by Doctor X who manipulates him into becoming a political assassin and controls his mind with the word mindcrime. The story shows the struggle the main character goes through to remember exactly what happened while he was an addict and how he struggles to deal with his internal demons and “mindcrimes.”
4. The Ultimate Sin - Ozzy Osbourne
Released in 1986, The Ultimate Sin once again showcases guitarist Jake E. Lee and the first album with drummer Randy Castillo. This is the fourth studio album released by Ozzy Osbourne after his split with Black Sabbath and includes the classic tracks, Shot In The Dark, Killer of Giants, Secret Loser and the title track, The Ultimate Sin.
3. Pyromania – Def Leppard
Released in 1983, Pyromania is the third album by Def Leppard and the first album with guitarist Phil Collen. The album includes so many great classics including Photograph, Too Late For Love, Rock of Ages and Foolin’. Def Leppard has shown their strength with all of the challenges they have faced in their career and have proved they can Rock Rock but won’t drop.
2. Back In Black – AC/DC
Released in 1980, Back In Black is the seventh album by AC/DC and the first with new singer Brian Johnson, after the sudden passing of Bon Scott. The album’s black cover was first rejected by the record company and the band compromised and placed a grey outline around the band’s logo. Dedicated to Bon’s memory, the album is AC/DC’s biggest selling album to date.
1. Screaming For Vengeance – Judas Priest
Released in 1982, Screaming for Vengeance is the eighth studio album by Judas Priest and my all-time favorite Priest album. The most successful track on the album, You Got Another Thing Comin’ was a last minute addition that pushed the album over the top.
I look forward to hearing your comments and your picks for the Top 10 albums from the 1980′s. From all of us at HearEvil.com we want to wish you a Happy and Healthy and Prosperous New Year and look forward to your feedback for the coming year! Thank you for all your support.
(c) Michael Richard Sneeburger
Today’s From The Vault is an interview with bassist, Rik Fox who will take us on a trip back through his life, his experiences in the music industry in NY and LA, his tenure in WASP, Steeler, Sin and Surgical Steel and much, much more. Continue reading
Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx has spoken out about Dave Mustaine’s recent statements regarding the Aurora, CO shooting and the massacre at the Sikh temple in Wisconsin suggesting that Obama administration is responsible for what happened in order to promote stricter gun laws.
The victims of the two horrific incidents that occured are extremely upset with Dave for what he said and fans are sick of hearing Dave’s “theories” about politics. Nikki said of Dave’s latest rant:
“Dave Mustaine is fucking asshole. I can’t even imagine how deep this cuts the victims’ families of these shootings. He owes every family an apology as well as our great country.” He then directed a personal message to Dave by saying, “Hey Dave if you think America is turning into ‘Nazi America’ as you are quoted saying, then move the fuck out.”
Motley Crue and KISS who are currently out on tour together, joined forces and donated $10,000 to the Aurora Victims Fund when they played there earlier this month. Nikki said “We bonded together with our tour partners and friends KISS to donate money, but we also hope it inspires others to do the same, no matter how big or small.”
You can view what Dave had to say here
Today we take a trip back to 1983 and the second track off Ratt’s self-titled EP, You Think You’re Tough. Continue reading