Category Archives: Skid Row

Skid Row – Rise of the Damnation Army – United World Rebellion: Chapter Two [EP Review]

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Skid Row – Rise of the Damnation Army – United World Rebellion: Chapter Two
2014, Megaforce Records
Buy the album

1. We Are the Damned
2. Give It the Gun
3. Catch Your Fall
4. Damnation Army
5. Zero Day
6. Sheer Heart Attack
7. Rats in the Cellar

Band:
Johnny Solinger – Lead Vocals
Dave “Snake” Sabo – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Scotti Hill – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Rachel Bolan – Bass, Backing Vocals
Rob Hammersmith – Drums

Skid Row is back with the second installment of their United World Rebellion series of EPs, which I think is meant to be a trilogy. Personally, I think this is a great way for bands to go about releasing music — a steady stream of EPs and then maybe do a double or triple disc compilation later down the line.

Not sure why it took these guys seven years before they released new music but a fire has certainly been lit under them. I never bothered with Thickskin or Revolutions Per Minute because both albums were reviewed by mostly everyone as being poor or mediocre, but the United World Rebellion series shows the band still has a snotty punky attitude and continues to show why they were one of the heaviest of the “hair bands” back in the early 1990s. “We are the Damned” is a true headbanger and the best track on the album. Though I enjoyed the first United World Rebellion, I was caught off guard by how good this track is.

The band wraps up the second chapter by superbly covering a few Queen and Aerosmith classics. If you’re looking for something the band to try to recreate the past with some glossy hair metal, you’re not going to find it on these recent EPs but what you will get is good solid heavy metal and hard rock. If this is the type of music the band continues to release, I don’t have any interest in ever seeing them reunited for a nostalgia run with Sebastian Bach (who I happen to like as a solo artist anyway).

Highlights: “We are the Damned”, “Catch Your Fall”, “Zero Day”, “Sheer Heart Attack”, “Rats in the Cellar”

Skid Row – United World Rebellion: Chapter One [Review]

Skid-Row-UWR

Skid Row – United World Rebellion: Chapter One
2013, Megaforce Records

1. Kings of Demolition
2. Let’s Go
3. This Is Killing Me
4. Get Up
5. Stitches

Band:
Johnny Solinger – Lead Vocals
Dave “Snake” Sabo – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Scotti Hill – Guitar
Rachel Bolan – Bass, Backing Vocals
Rob Hammersmith – Drums

Producer: Dave “Snake” Sabo

Skid Row is one of the few name hair bands that hasn’t constantly been doing the tour/record/tour thing. Seems like they took a few years off even from touring, for some reason. I was starting to think that maybe there would never any new music from them since their first two albums with Johnny Solinger didn’t receive the highest of praise. I’ve always felt Sebastian Bach’s voice was what truly made the band special anyway. Yeah, they’ve written some great songs but other than Slave to the Grind, I don’t think they’ve ever written an entirely great album.

Still, when I read that Skid Row were going to release some new music (the plan is multiple EPs over the next year and a half or so), I had a good feeling about the album. I think the band is aware that people were not entirely enthusiastic with the previous Solinger albums and I felt they would proceed with that in mind. I actually think the cover for this EP is very striking as well and somehow (even though you shouldn’t judge an album by its cover) it gave me further hope.

Skid Row was always one of the darker and heavier hair bands (they eventually made the complete transfer from hair metal band to heavy metal band) and things are no different on United World Rebellion: Chapter One. This is solid 1980s sounding heavy metal full or anger and pessimism (as if you couldn’t tell by the EP’s title or cover art).

The only song that really doesn’t work for me is the ballad called “This Is Killing Me”. It’s a very simple, no-frills, lifeless ballad. Quite frankly, it sounds like something that Bret Michaels would write and record. The other four tracks are songs that I think fans of Slave to the Grind and Subhuman Race can appreciate. I’ve read comments elsewhere of someone complaining that this EP is trying too hard to sound modern. I don’t get that at all. Sound likes good late ’80s/early ’90s metal to me.

I’m very interested in hearing how the rest of the EPs are going to sound. I actually like this model of recording a lot. I’ve felt for awhile that older artists should mostly stick to releasing EPs and then compile them at a later date as a full album (as Skid Row plans on doing). I think too much time, effort and money goes into recording full albums for these bands who, let’s be honest, aren’t going to sell many albums in the first place. Slowly releasing EPs and then compiling them into an LP is a great way to keep your name out there and cut down on costs. Knock out five or six songs, go make some tour money during the summer, come back and knock out another five or six songs, repeat.

Highlights: “Kings of Demolition”, “Get Up”, “Stitches”

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Buy the EP at Amazon.com

SKID ROW – Slave to the Grind

Skid Row – Slave to the Grind [“Clean” version] (1991, Atlantic Records)

Track Listing:
1. “Monkey Business” … 4:17
2. “Slave to the Grind” … 3:31
3. “The Threat” … 3:47
4. “Quicksand Jesus” … 5:21
5. “Psycho Love” … 3:58
6. “Beggar’s Day” … 4:02
7. “Livin’ on a Chain Gang” … 3:56
8. “Creepshow” … 3:56
9. “In a Darkened Room” … 4:57
10. “Riot Act” … 2:40
11. “Mudkicker” … 3:50
12. “Wasted Time” … 5:46

Band:
Sebastian Bach – Vocals
Dave Sabo – Guitar
Scotti Hill – Guitar
Rachel Bolan – Bass
Rob Affuso – Drums

Produced by: Michael Wagener & Dave Sabo

An absolute classic that finds the band at their best and Sebastian Bach just nailing it on every song. Say what you will about the guy but he’s one of the best rock vocalists ever and the evidence is all over this record. I ended up with the “clean” version (another Columbia House purchase, I think), with “Beggar’s Day” replacing “Get the Fuck Out”. That’s a win though because “Beggar’s Day” is the better song. I still break this one out every now and then and crank it.

“Quicksand Jesus”, “In a Darkened Room” and “Wasted Time” are three of the best ballads the genre has to offer.

Highlights: “Monkey Business”, “Slave to the Grind”, “The Threat”, “Quicksand Jesus”, “Psycho Love”, “Beggar’s Day”, “In A Darkened Room”, “Riot Act”, “Wasted Time”

www.skidrow.com
www.sebastianbach.com
www.myspace.com/skidrow
www.myspace.com/sebastianbach

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