17 for ’17: The Rock and Roll Fables Guide To The Best Releases Of The New Year

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Whew! Glad the 2016 retrospective is finally over. Now we can get to some reviewin’ and interviewin’ and stuff….wait, we’re doing a 2017 preview, too? UGH! WHY????? Then I guess without further adieu, the top 17 albums that may or may not surface in ’17: [Read more…]

Skold Delivers The Industrial Goods With Latest Album The Undoing

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Two of my fondest concert going experiences are seeing KMFDM touring behind Symbols in 1997 and Marilyn Manson supporting The Golden Age Of Grotesque in 2003. While both shows were memorable for several different reasons, the one common factor for both was a certain bass player named Tim Skold. Collaborator, co-conspirator, and partner to some of the greats in the past, Skold is finally back to prove how potent he is once again as a solo artist. [Read more…]

Marilyn Manson Returns With The Pale Emperor, Plays Boston’s House Of Blues On January 28th

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Releasing a new album in January is a bold fucking statement for any artist and there is no one bolder in modern rock than Marilyn Manson. Besides the release date, probably the biggest surprise on The Pale Emperor (His ninth album) is how utterly amazing and solid it is. You can credit Twiggy Ramirez, composer Tyler Bates, Shooter Jennings, drummer Gil Sharone all you want but the true credit lies with Mr. Brian Warner aka “Tully” from Sons Of Anarchy for all you MM newbies. [Read more…]

15 for ’15: A Rock And Roll Fables Guide To The Best Releases Of The New Year

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In no way in any sort of order, here’s the albums we think you should be looking forward to in 2015:

1. Amen (TBC/TBA)

No clue what the album is called and no clue when it’s coming out but it should be coming at you in 2015. Casey Chaos is back, my friends! Reinvigorated and alive (Didja see Amen’s triumphant set at Knotfest?!?!?!), Chaos rules next year and is joined by former Amen bassist John Fahnestock and some guy named Dave Lombardo playing drums. Make no mistake, this should be one of the heaviest and most prolific metal release of 2015. [Read more…]

Emigrate Add New Friends And New Skills On Silent So Long

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Silent So Long, the second album from Emigrate, is akin to Soulfly’s sophomore outing in that it’s chock filled with high-profile guests that could easily overpower the band underneath. Luckily the strength of Richard Z. Kruspe’s songwriting and track sequencing skills insures that on this album, Emigrate always shines through. [Read more…]

Lady Gaga is the shit! A Rock And Roll Fables review of ARTPOP

I like Lady Gaga. I do. I was a fan when she first popped up on the scene during NKOTB’s comeback The Block  way, way back in 2008 and loved her debut and was even more taken back by the follow-up EP/mini-album The Fame Monster. Am I a fan of the theatrics, the fanfare, the persona? Nope. I grew up in a Marilyn Manson/Slipknot era of shock rock/metal so maybe I’m just desensitized to it all but the extra flair does nothing for me. However, it’s incredible that just listening to a Gaga track instantly evokes images of what the dance routine will be like on stage.

That said, I do believe that Stefani is a phenomenal performer. She captures that perfect mix of Britney and Christina but just does it better and on ARTPOP she immediately brings to mind a musical icon when she at times channels Madonna’s Confessions on a Dance Floor.

Born This Way was not the album that needed to follow the breakout success of “Bad Romance”. For all you monsters out there that felt slighted by her second studio album (I don’t consider myself a “monster” by the way), her third full-length will instantly quell your fears.

“Aura” is this gorgeous opener that draws listeners in with a subtle flamenco line and Gaga’s effects-laden vocals before giving way to a larger than life dance pop party as the pop star belts out  “Aura-a-a-ah!” circling back to the “Ra ra…” chorus of “Bad Romance”.

From there on out, ARTPOP gets bigger and bolder. “Venus” is a raucous space jam, “G.U.Y.” is a divine electro romp, and “Sexxx Dreams” is a funky yet filthy little ditty about, um, you can use your imagination. It also features a nifty little bass line that one could picture John Taylor popping up for (Speaking of, why has there been no Simon LeBon/Lady Gaga duet yet?).

T.I. turns up along with Too Short and Twista for “Jewels n’ Drugs” which could be compared to Miley Cyrus’ recent foray into hip hop but unlike Hannah Montana, Gaga just executes everything better.

Midway through is when ARTPOP gets really interesting as the album traverses the stratosphere on the atmospheric “Do What U Want” featuring R. Kelly and the title track which takes listeners to a whole different realm of awesome.

The lack of ballads is a plus in my book as well and luckily (For me, at least) when they do pop up they’re back to back and towards the end and followed by the massive “Applause” to close out a triumphant third album.

ARTPOP is out on November 11th. Order it here and here.
Grade: A