DR03: NITRO-Do Ya Wanna Rock - Rarities 83-87 CD £12
Pennsylvania Hard Rock history would be poorer if NITRO never came to existence in 1979. This supercharged Hard Rock band took the U.S. and European emerging Metal underground by storm with their privately pressed 10''EP "Lethal" released in early 1982. At this point their sound was reminiscent of great 70s acts such as Montrose and Teaze but also in the vein of other contemporary high energy rock acts like Riot, Schoolboys (pre-Icon) or the more obscure Loosely Tight. In 83 Mausoleum Records releases the EP with two bonus tracks in Europe giving the band a wider coverage in european territory. On the second coming of the band in 87, they recorded the pre-production tapes for their follow up album "Volatile Activity" that never happened. This time their sound was more on par with Quiet Riot or Twisted Sister. However, in the big scheme of Rock and Roll, it was too late for stardom as this "Stadium Metal" type sound has been around since 1983 and the band members look didn't even match with the hairspray and doll-face image that was associated to the "Hair Metal" sound, so important for record sales at the time. The band eventually vanished into obscurity until a comeback in the 21st century when they realised there was still a fan base for their music much due to the Internet, specially Youtube. The Volatile Activity songs appear for the very first time on CD, as they were released on vinyl back in 2013. The Lethal +II Studio Session 83 unreleased tracks appeared before in the CD "Lethal Dose" released also in 2013 but is now out of print. It's time to enjoy the ride again on this ultimate rarities collection and honour this exciting 4-piece Nitro-fuelled Rock'n'Roll machine!
File under: Heavy Metal, Hard Rock, Hair Metal.
For fans of: Teaze, (early) Riot, Loosely Tight, Wild Dogs and Twisted Sister.
DR02: M-16-Locked and Loaded - 30th Anniversary Expanded Edition CD £12
80's New York Hard Rock/Metal for fans of Dokken, Fifth Angel, Whitefoxx, Battle Bratt, etc.
Reissued on CD for the first time in europe includes the rare privately pressed 1988 album "Locked and Loaded" and two bonus tracks (Demo 89). M-16 shared stages in the 80's with bands like Ratt, Armored Saint, Wrathchild America, and fellow New York bands Dirty Looks, Roxx, Triffid and Blacksmith.
Carefully remastered and presented in a 12-page booklet with band history and rare photos, this release marks the celebration of the 30th Anniversary of "Locked and Loaded".
The 1980s was a decade of flamboyance, excess, and decadence; all the ingredients to make up one hell of a time. Like David Lee Roth once said, “the people shined, and the music shined.” Nowhere was this more evident than the glittering glam cesspool of Los Angeles, where the country’s wildest and flashiest bands made the Sunset Strip sound extend far beyond Doheny Drive and Hammond Street. Like an out of control epidemic, the mindless self-indulgent sounds of flash metal and party rock spread throughout the country. In nightclubs all across America, circuit bands spread their simple message of having a good time while rock ‘n’ roll was still alive and well. The fever spread quickly and no town was immune to big hair, colorful spandex, loud guitars, and those oh so melodic hooks.
One of the hot spots at the time was, unsurprisingly, New York. Already home to bands like KISS and The New York Dolls, the area was certainly no stranger to a good time. Multitudes of nightclubs full of rock star hopefuls littered the state. In the Capital District, before heading out for the night, one would pick up the local Metroland Magazine to find out who was playing in the clubs. Scanning the many nightclub advertisements, often all eyes were searching for the familiar machine gun toting grim reaper that heralded a performance from the one and only M-16.
M-16 was formed in 1983, and consisted of lead guitarist Glen Oliver, drummer Tom Verrigni, bassist Steve "Mote" Vandyke, vocalist Greg Simmons and rhythm guitarist Gary Ranze. The band quickly hit the scene, making the rounds to all the hottest rock clubs around the metro area. It did not take long for M-16 to begin to gain a dedicated fan base by playing covers of popular songs by Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Dokken, Scorpions, and others, as did most other bands on the circuit. That year personnel changes found Ranze and Simmons leaving the group and being replaced by Eddie Scutt and Darren O’Brien. By the end of 1984 musical differences began to cause the troop to splinter, and M-16 eventually became non-functioning.
In 1985 founding members Oliver, VanDyke and Verrigni decided to continue M-16 adding new members Kevin Egnor on second guitar and vocalist Lenny Thomas. The new line up would only play a few shows before drummer Tom Verrigni would be replaced by Pete Sivaslian. With a newfound stability in the ranks things began to click as M-16 marched out on an East Coast club tour. The band continued touring throughout the Northeast for the next two years playing with bands like Armored Saint, Wrathchild America, and fellow New York bands Dirty Looks, Roxx, Triffid, and cult metal heroes Blacksmith. They hit clubs throughout New York, down to Maryland, over to Pennsylvania, and as far up as Maine to play the famous Free Street Pub where Led Zeppelin had once performed in the ‘70s. At this time the guys had begun to write their own original material that was being shuffled into their sets. Things became extremely busy for M-16, who would sometimes play 3-4 shows a week.
Their first original song "Wasted Love" was released to local radio stations, receiving airplay in standard rotation. Stations WPYX and PYX106 Metal Shop received a steady flow of requests for the single. Then in 1986 M-16 was asked to open up for Ratt at R.P.I. Fieldhouse in Troy to a crowd of 8,000 screaming fans. Originally Poison were the opening act on tour with Ratt but had to pull off due to Brett Michaels’ health issues. This chance occurrence was a perfect opportunity for M-16 to increase their fan-base.
By 1987 M-16 was ready to enter MCE Recording Studios in Schenectady, N.Y and begin recording what would be their debut album. In 1988 Locked and Loaded was released, receiving favorable reviews from fans and critics alike. The DIY release sold an amazing 15,000 copies nationwide and 10,000 overseas. More East Coast touring continued to promote the album. After a year on the road drummer Sivaslian was replaced by Gary Seeley, and soon after guitarist Glen Oliver left and was replaced by Russell Harnish. In 1989 M-16 returned to MCE Studios to record two new tracks "The Game" and "Play It Loud" that were never officially released. Another year of touring followed before guitarist Harnish would leave, replaced by Dan Wos. M-16 continued to tour for a few months but the end of 1990 the band had run out of ammunition and split up.
In 2007 M-16 would come back together for a reunion show dedicated to the memory of Pete Sivaslian, who passed away in 2000. After 17 years members Lenny Thomas, Glen Oliver, Kevin Egnor, and Steve Vandyke all decided to reform the band and once again hit their local circuit. Not unlike their many lineup changes, the years since M-16’s beginnings brought many changes to their regional metal landscape. Peers like The Emerald City Band, Angel Cruz, Run 21, Reckless Romance, Virgin and countless others are nothing more than fond memories, the once thieving nightclubs and venues no longer exist, and the audiences have all grown up, and the hair is no longer as big as it once was. But one thing is still present in the Capital District and that is M-16 and their machine gun welding grim reaper.
File Under: Melodic Metal, Heavy Metal, Hair Metal.
For fans of: Dokken, White Lion, Whitefoxx, Metalwolf and Shire.
DR01: WHITEFOXX-Come Pet the Foxx CD £10 (sale price limited time)
WHITEFOXX is known as one of the pioneers in the rise of the Philadelphia Metal scene in the mid 80s. Formed originally as PRECIOUS METAL in 1982 as a cover band, the group’s first incarnation comprised of vocalist Tony Harnell, guitarist Barry Bennedetta, keyboard player Mark Soma, bassist Mike Regina and drummer Craig Soma. As the cover scene started to go sour, Harnell quit the band and eventually winded up fronting Norwegian outfit TNT. Bennedetta went on to play briefly in the band WAYSTED with UFO’s Pete Way.
In 1984 vocalist / guitarist Mark Chasen joined PRECIOUS METAL and began writing songs with Mike Regina where they traded off lead vocals. They recruited drummer
Billy Sipp and in 1985 started playing out as a power trio. As the band gained notoriety in the Philadelphia / South Jersey metal scene, guitarist Jeff LaBar was added to the fold which propelled him into the local spotlight where he was quickly recruited to fill the void left by Michael Kelly Smith with Polygram recording artists, CINDERELLA. emaining good friends with PRECIOUS METAL, LaBar recommended fellow guitarist Jimmy Maropoulos to take his place. Shortly thereafter, drummer Billy Sipp was replaced with new up and coming skin beater, Jimmy “Feek” Ferraioli. Feek was young, had some monster “chops” and he brought his own special brand of humor to the band. Soon PRECIOUS METAL had to change their name when an all-girl band with the same name landed a major label record deal. This is how WHITEFOXX was born.
Although Feek helped with the transition from PRECIOUS METAL to WHITEFOXX, he only stayed with the band for about a year before moving on to other projects. He was responsible for creating many of the signature drum parts in the early WHITEFOXX material, some of which remain to this day. In 1986, with a new name and new attitude, WHITEFOXX entered the studio and cut a strong, four song demo with temporary drummer Jim Drnec. This first foray featured the impressive anthem “Beverly Hills” which gained them attention in HIT PARADER magazine in the US as well as KERRANG magazine in the UK. Soon “Metal” shows on local radio stations picked up on this and started playing tracks from the WHITEFOXX demo. Shortly after this, WHITEFOXX found their missing link in drummer Rik Anthony and enjoyed the stability hey had been looking for. With this lineup of Chasen, Regina, Maropoulos & Anthony, the band went on to become one of the strongest contenders in the Philadelphia Metal scene. With catchy songs, a flashy stage show and a growing army of followers, it seemed they were destined for stardom! But, as with any group of talented individuals, it’s not always easy to stay on the same page let alone the same stage.
Chasen, Maropoulos & Ferraioli went on to form the band CHASEN with new bassist Donie Bufalo while vocalist Rob Zucchi and guitarist Reggie Wu joined WHITEFOXX. Wu later went on to form the band HEAVENS EDGE. In 1987 WHITEFOXX seemed to stabilize again when WORLD WAR III frontman Tipa Sparrs joined Regina & Anthony along with guitarist / keyboardist Tucker Michaels and guitar wizard Dave Lord was recruited to fill the void left by Reggie Wu. In 1988 WHITEFOXX signed a production deal with Denny Somach Productions. The plan was for Somach to get WHITEFOXX signed to a major label to take the band’s career to the next logical level. The song “Starry Eyes” caught the attention of several labels and some showcases were set up so the record company execs would get a chance to see the band play live. At least one deal was put forth but unfortunately, Somach didn’t feel any of the offers were strong enough to produce a competitive enough product. Eventually, WHITEFOXX disbanded in 1989 when Anthony and Regina, this time as frontman, went on to form the band LIGHT YEARS with guitarist Larry Campanella & bassist Slater Clifton.
In 1992 Regina, Anthony & Zucchi went back on the road again as WHITEFOXX with Larry Campanella on guitar. Chasen declined the invitation to join this incarnation due to another project he was already involved in. The plan was to play only a few shows but it lasted for a full year.
In 2004 Chasen reformed WHITEFOXX for a series of shows that featured Philadelphia / South Jersey bands from the 80’s. He recruited guitarist Barry Bennedetta , drummer Jim Drnec, and a local bass player to do the show as Regina was involved in other projects. WHITEFOXX came full circle when co-founders Chasen and Regina got back together to appear onstage for the first time in over 20 years for a reunion show in New Jersey in 2012. This lineup also featured former WHITEFOXX guitarist Larry Campanella and drummer Chris Nerone. At one point in the show they were also joined onstage by Reggie Wu to perform “Beverly Hills".
File Under: Hair Metal, Melodic Metal, Melodic Hard Rock.
For fans of: Dokken, White Lion, Stryper and King Kobra.