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Posts Tagged ‘Rock’

Album Art for Trial by Fire

hard rock n. A style of rock ‘n’ roll characterized by a harsh, amplified sound and loud, distorted electric guitars.

It was probably a year ago when I first heard of Stonecollar. It was at The Nameless Pub in Somerset West. They have made such an impact on me with their electric performance and brilliant stage presence that I regularly went and have a look at their website and when I got news that they have released their first album, I made damn sure I got my hands on it as soon as possible.

Stonecollar is a hard rock band based in Cape Town and consists of:

Léshem Petersen : Vocals and bass
Sean Tait : Lead guitar
Clinton Jurgens : Rhythm guitar
Bryan Nicol : Drums

STONECOLLAR has already caught the eye of music lovers worldwide and achieved it’s fair share of accolades. This year hard rock fans around the world gave STONECOLLAR’s song, SQT, a rating of 4.9 out of 5 on the international website Garageband.com. Less than 5% of the thousands of songs uploaded to the sight make it into this range. SQT also scooped almost every award in the hard rock category, including Best Guitars, Best Vocals, Best Drums, Best Lyrics and Best Song. STONECOLLAR was the highest rated band from South Africa

It seems fitting that their first album release, which has been manufactured, distributed, songs and music written, recorded, mixed, mastered and produced was done by Stonecollar themselves, has been named Trial by Fire.

Set to have been released in 2010, they have scrapped a project from a recording studio after not getting a quality product that they have sweat and bled for; and so they had to start from scratch… again.
They have put a tremendous amount of effort in the production of this album and their passion is clearly audible. The music is hard and the riffs force you to automatically take a power stance wherever you are. Léshem Petersen’s vocals are  has a powerful and clear voice that spills out meaningful lyrics over the crashing drums and screaming guitars.

All the tracks on the album is great but if I have to force myself to pick out 3 tracks that really REALLY impressed me it would be:

Track #3: SQT
Track #5: Poison The Well
Track #8: …As The Crow Flies

Here is a sneak peek of SQT:

Pitted against other trendy genres like pop and indie, this is a hard rock band to keep an eye on, they are going to get better and better…

To get your hands on the album, contact any of the band members through their website:

http://www.stonecollar.co.za/

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I’ll be taking the ROCK on the Blog down a different route this week with an artist that makes as style of music that is more elegant and feminine, Louise Carver.

I wont lie… I kind of have a crush on Louise Carver and say what you will, because I’m a typical Rock and Roll lad, but there is something about this beautiful artist with her presence and powerful vocals that really attracts my the crowds eyes and ears.
Cape Town born, Louise Carver was trained from a very young age in classical vocals and piano and has reached success at an age that many other artists could only dream of.

We went to see her performance in Cape Town at the Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden. It was one of the last shows in their winter concert series held at the Silvertree Restaurant. R135.00 per person got you in and includes a glass of Durbanville Hills white or red wine with a starter. We squeezed past the tables and were placed at the back of the restaurant, right behind a pillar… sigh… and apart from setback of not being born with X-ray vision, I’m nearsighted as well! (I so wished for a table closer to the stage). When we asked for another table, we were informed that the whole restaurant was booked out and that unfortunately there will be no other tables available and so reluctantly we accepted and took our seats. I did however move over closer to the fireplace where I had a better view…

After the starters Louise and her band got on stage “I’ll be playing some of the popular songs as well as some of my hidden gems tonight, you know those songs that do not get as much airtime as the rest, but do have a  special meaning for me.” Off she goes with beautiful melodies and really heart-felt songs. The piano and a single backup guitar, vocals and light percussion amplify her perfectly.

My favourite songs of the evening were “Empty Fantasy” and “Impossible Love” but all her songs were excellent. She is truly a professional at what she does.

Apart from writing and performing music, she also started her own jewelry range, called the Louise Carver Collection. She is creative and business savvy!

Currently I’m listening to her new album “Looking to the Edge” which has the current hit song “Zulu Boy” on it.  I am even more amazed at her talent. Her albums are available at most music outlets and “Silent Scream” remains one of my favourite.

Go S.A. music!

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I have been a Prime Circle fan for quite a while now and recently I got my hands on the new Jekyll and Hyde album. It was bought at the very last-minute from Music Moods. They were already closing the doors as I walked in, so I just had about three minutes to decide! Had a quick listen and it sounded good… Deal or no Deal? – Deal!

I popped the CD in my car stereo, so that I can get the feel of the album while I’m driving. Immediately I was bombarded by crashing cymbals and an electric intro on guitar “Oh yes, this is going to be good”  I thought and off I sped on a journey with Prime Circle at the helm. 

Prime Circle consists of:
Ross Learmonth on vocals and guitar
Neil Breytenbach on keyboards
Dale Schnettler on drums
Marco Gomes on bass
Dirk Bisschoff on lead guitar

Jekyll & Hyde Tracks:

  1. Closure
  2. Broken Promises
  3. Breathing
  4. Everything You Want
  5. All Of Me
  6. Turning in my Sleep
  7. Never Gonna Bring Us Down
  8. I’m Ready
  9. Worth the Fight
  10. Not The Same
  11. Turn Me To Stone
  12. Jekyll & Hyde
  13. Brothers (Bonus Track)

The Jekyll and Hyde experience:
The album jumps out at you right from the start with the fist-clenching 1st track “Closure”  then starts taking a turn to a touching piano intro with “Breathing”. Just as you thought you caught your breath, the band picks up the mid-section of the album with solid rock tracks like “Everything you Want”  and “All Of Me”. Delving further down this musical rabbit hole; it turns to the melodic “Turning In My Sleep” to the speaker busting  “Never Gonna Bring Us Down”  and then down to heart-felt “Turn me to Stone” and finishes with a very dark “Jekyll & Hyde”

Produced by Theo Crous (who worked with artist like aKING and Chris Chameleon), mixed by Kevin “The Caveman” Shirley (Led Zepplin, Iron Maiden and Aerosmith) and mastered by George Marino (Fall Out Boy, Metallica). Here is an album which was created to showcase Prime Circle’s hard rock roots but now with a more melodic side as well. It just shows the diversity of this leading South African rock band.
The album is a split personality between edgy hard rock and great emotional ballads. The album leaves you spent; exhausted and hungry for more.

Currenlty the popular single “Breathing” is getting plenty of air-time on 5FM and other radio stations. I hope to see other tracks get similar publicity.

Prime Circle: Jekyll and Hyde is hard and tough as granite but also extremely well polished.

A job well done guys!

Check out their website: Prime Circle on www.primecircle.co.za

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The first time I heard Joint State, I was sitting with the Nebbiolo Nymph at Berties Mooring Pub and Restaurant in Gordon’s Bay. I was mightily impressed by their talent and so when I received word that they would be playing at The Nameless Pub in Somerset West, I made plans to see them. 

 
Nameless Pub is not the type of pub where you order a glass of wine and sit quietly in the corner. It’s a rowdy musky, pub and when I walked, I immediately went to order myself a brandy and coke, just to blend in with the locals. As I moved through the smoky bar towards the back, the area opens up to large courtyard where the stage has been set up. Its seems that I have arrived just in time to see the boys as they prepare to get ready for their set. 

Joint State consist of: 

  • Chris Munro – Lead guitars and vocals
  • Martin Munro – Drums
  • Stephan Lenhoff  – Bass Guitar

After I  bought them a round of beers as refreshments, they started off with their explosive rock gig. Joint State has a diverse music style, which is a combination of Classic Rock ranging from the 60’s with a detour via Ska and Melodic Rock, all the way through to the early 90’s Grunge movement. (a time when Doc Martins, checkered shirts and long unkept hair was the norm.) 

Chris writes all of the songs for the band but they also like to cover a couple of songs from groups that are their influences, for example they performed “Roadhouse Blues” from The Doors. After hearing the cover, I really came to understand how these influences comes through as the part of their music style. 

 
They kept the crowd going with the powerful vocal talents from Chris, the infectious beat from Stephan’s bass and the non-stop energy from Martin on the drums for the duration of their whole set. 

When they were done with their gig, I spend some time with the guys at the bar, they are down to earth and very approachable. Also I got my hands on their new album, The Relief, which was recorded after winning the Mystic Boer BandBattle competition in 2009. The album was created with sponsored studio time at the Franschhoek Recording Studio. 

Joint State Rocking With "Give Some Fire"

 

As I walked out of the pub in the early morning hours,  I came to realise that regardless of The Pub’s name or reputation it is one of the few places in the Helderberg that provide a platform form for up and coming bands and artists as a venue to bring their talents to life. Say what you will about the place but  The Nameless Pub will definately see me again. 

On my way home I popped the CD in my car stereo, after stopping at the petrol station for my traditional nocturnal pie and coke, I was surprised to hear that the band (albeit the fact that the CD is produced in a recording studio) was just as good as their live performance. The only difference was the bands raw energy, which was more tangible as it oozed from the speakers at the Pub, but that is to be expected from a live gig. 

***Its been a couple of days now since the gig and I am still not tired of listening to the CD, it just goes to show the diverse style of music and the incredible talent from this band. I’m  loving their songs more each time I listen to it. It is a melting pot of genres and influences, but Joint State still remain unique and they hold on to that good old South African Rock feel. 

I think Joint State has got it right and I cannot wait to go and see their next gig! 

  • Check out Joint State on their Facebook page  to find out where to buy the CD, their next gig or any other additional information.

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Blues Broers! - Photo courtesy of Terri Boshoff

Only once before have I seen Dave Patlansky perform live, which was at the (new) Dorpstraat Teater earlier this year. I suffered a total audio receptacle blowout due to the unbelievable technique I witnessed on stage. I have never seen or heard anybody play with such passion live. So on Saturday, Clyde, the Feedback Friday – Spidey Edition winner, and I drove to the Gordon’s Bay Waterfront where the Berties Mooring Pub and Restaurant is situated. R20.00 got us in (a bargain considering the excellent artists that play there). Right from the start, the door lady informed us that the restaurant was packed out. She was right, there was not an open chair or table in sight (and we arrived an hour early!). Seems like the word got out since there were no mention of the gig on Berties website. 

As we squeezed our way through the crowds in the smoky restaurant and grabbed a couple of beers, we settled to a corner where we could at least see the stage. Dan Patlansky and the band got on and opened with an incredible Blues Ballad, which got us in the right mood for an evening of True Blues

Dan’s guitar arsenal consists of “The Red” a 1962 Fender Stratocaster, “The Yellow” a 1957 re-issue Fender slide guitar and “The Beast” a 1960 Fender custom. With these three instruments he took us on a journey through different styles of Blues and then some of his own unique interpretations. Half way through one of Dan’s monumental solos, I had a look through the crowd. Many listeners had their eyes closed as they were whisked away by his soulful melodic picking of the strings, just to be swept up and succumbing to the urge to play air guitar when Dan picks up the pace with some awesome Rock Blues. 

Dan and The Beast

Even I found myself yelling out an untimely “Whoo-hoo!” which made the crowd in front of me turn around, shaking their heads dismissively (I even think that one girl mouthed the words “rookie” in my direction). I could not help myself. You have to be dead not to be moved in some way by Dan’s infectious music. 

The only hiccup that evening was the drunken heckler that was shouting profanities just to attract attention. The fact that his teeth weren’t knocked out was a sheer miracle. Dan and the boys wasn’t bothered by this cretin at all and kept on playing their Blessed Blues Brains out. 

Dan Patlansky is a truly talented artist and if you have not seen him live, you have not experienced awesome Blues.  

  • Berties Mooring is a family run restaurant and was established in 1994. I frequently visit the restaurant for its great views, good food and fantastic live performances.
  • Dan Patlansky is one of the most respected Blues artists ever produced from South Africa! See the video below of Dan at the Splashy Fen in 2009

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I was supposed to be post a blog yesterday, but was tied down with some wine deliveries in Cape Town. So I thought that I might as well use this opportunity to do a photo blog!

So I filled my travel mug with some fresh Mojo and planted my Ipod in my ears with AC/DC, Gerald Clark, Foo Fighters and Albert Frost. (nothing like Rock and Blues for a road trip!)

Now I need a big tub of Fresh Cream

I set my course along the Annandale Road to the N2 past the Zetler Strawberry farms. Thanks to these guys they have kept us supplied with fresh strawberries and living in the winelands we also have a non-stop supply of bubbly or wine… That is why I love living in the winelands. So much diversity. All we need now is some dairy farms to give us some cream… and let the romance begin!

REALLY FRESH burgers and milk

Soon my little cows… real soon…

Hitting the N2, I was whisked back to my tour guide days, where tourists would ask me about the shanty towns known as Khayelitsha, Langa and Gugulethu. It always suprising to see how so many people can live in utter poverty while others drive luxury sedans and live the high live… I find myself in the middle.

Click on the picture to see faith

It also reminds me of that Phil Collins song, “Another Day In Paradise“. Think twice when you sleep warmly in YOUR bed.
One of my (less) favourite land marks are the two coal electricity towers close to Athlone, weren’t this in the news lately to be demolished? I can’t seem to remember.

What was that 2nd book of Lord of the Rings called again?

Going through Rondebosch, there are some great sites like the University of Cape Town, legendary institution of  higher learning, young students… and a windmill…

Ahh the Dutch

When the Dutch arrived in the Cape in 1652 there was very little infrastructure and it was the task of van Riebeeck to build a fort for the protection of his people as well as to plant gardens to supply Dutch ships calling at the Cape with fresh produce. The gardens were a mammoth task and soon van Riebeeck found that he needed labour to work in them. The VOC (Dutch East India Company) introduced slaves into the Cape to work in the gardens. Even with these additional people the refreshment station could not cope with the demand and so the VOC allowed staff members who had completed their contracts to stay on at the Cape and gave them farms so that they could produce food for the colony. These ex employees became known as free burghers.
Over the years the free burghers branched out and planted different crops amongst them wheat. As the supply of wheat grew so did the demand for wheat products necessitating the building of mills to crush the wheat for flour.

Driving through Constantia is always nice albeit a bit depressing knowing that I will never be able to live in this neck of the woods. Thus, I got great pleasure sitting in the bakkie listening to Jack Parow’sCooler as ekke?” at full volume, while I’m skeefing out the woman next to me driving her Mercedes-Benz Kompressor.

Dink JYS cooler as ekke?

Anyway, delivered wine at destination #1, so next stop Cape Town, The Mother City herself!

Welcome!

I love Cape Town and the cool thing is that I live close enough to go visit, but far enough to enjoy the quieter country life.
Wine delivery #2 was successful and by now have worked up a mighty hunger.
I asked Spit or Swallow what would be a good suggestion for lunch. They recommended me to the Shawarma Express in Long Street. Brilliant! I love Shawarmas.
“Get in MAH belly!

Nom-Nom-Nom!

I must admit, for a major city Cape Town is not quite hyped up about the World Cup as what I heard from what is happening in Johannesburg and the surrounding areas, but yet you see a lot of flags, and vuvuzelas (Yes foreigners, get used to it. It is here to stay!) and the GEES is HERE, you can feel it as you walk down the streets of Cape Town, which networks through the city like lit up neutrons.

Lekker Long Street

Right, quick stop in Table View, then back to the farm. I need some on road inspiration, via…

Foo/DC/Albert/Clark

Rock on!

Some good eating on one of those...

Driving into the farm, I am reminded that I live in a great country, with all its colours and diversity. Yes, we have our difficulties, but damn it’s a wonderful country to live in. I love it and so should you…

Go South Africa!

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