L.A. JOHNNYS … L.A. Guns debut new guitarist Johnny Monaco to California

SOURCE: Metal Sludge


SANTA CLARITA, California — Here’s Johnny!


Johnny Monaco made his debut for L.A. Guns on Friday, April 6, as the new rhythm guitarist for the legendary glam-metal band less than a month since the controversial departure of Michael Grant — who was pushed out in March — in a wildly successful concert before a near-capacity crowd at the new Canyon Club in Valencia near Six Flags Magic Mountain.


Monaco, who sang and played lead for rival Enuff Z’Nuff for 15 years over two stints, was a bit stiff for the first few songs before finding his groove and pretty much nailing the entire set, as the mostly MILF-y crowd roared its approval.


“How well does Johnny fit in? On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d give him a 15,” singer Phil Lewis said.


It is not an easy gig. L.A. Guns plays a lot louder and faster than Enuff Z’Nuff, and keeping up with nimble-fingered lead guitarist Tracii Guns can be challenging,


“I just tried to remember all the chords, and my hair got in the way a little bit, but I think it was good,” Monaco (inset right) said. “I thought it was fine. They called me and asked me to join. I think it’s cool. I like the songs. I felt stupid not knowing (all) the songs earlier, but then I started getting into them, and Tracii is really good. I like it a lot. I think it’s great.”


Monaco has new life, and so does L.A. Guns, which peaked in the 1980s with a series of MTV hits and still tours regularly despite a drumbeat of personnel changes through the years.


“I try to keep going here, and I’m doing the best I can,” Monaco said. “It’s fun. It’s awesome.”


Or as Lewis announced: “It’s nice to have Johnny Monaco here now. We’ve been friends a long time, and he is the 48th member of L.A. Guns!”


Then the band soon broke into “Never Enough” that morphed into an extended jam with the volume on 10.


After “Ballad of Jayne,” Lewis asked the crowd, “Do you want some more?” Of course the answer was yes, and on “Rip & Tear,” Budderside’s Patrick Stone jumped up to share lead vocals.


“I think things went great,” bassist Johnny Martin (inset left) said. “It was definitely different, and as far as moving on, this is a step in the right direction. I thought Johnny did a great job.”


Buzz band Permacrush opened, and the crowd was already filtering in and applauding nicely for the Los Angeles foursome led by singer/guitarist Chris Crush.


The group just scored a sponsorship deal with Barenjager honey liqueur, and sure enough they celebrated like it was big party.


Some of the best moments came during “Only Friend,” “Dirty Looks” and “Baby,” which is popular on youTube.


Crush is a natural. He is good at winning over a crowd.


Ryan Matthew, an 18-year old with good, melodic songs beyond his years, also performed to a strong response.



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MINISTRY Live Review Coming Tomorrow



I Know Words
Twilight Zone
Victims of a Clown (with Burton C. Bell)
Punch in the Face
Senor Peligro
Rio Grande Blood
We’re Tired of It (with Burton C. Bell)
Wargasm (with Burton C. Bell)
Just One Fix
So What (with Chris Connelly)
Bad Blood
Encore 2:
Psalm 69

photos by Dale Patrick Bennett for mk ultra magazine


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GHOST Performs Acoustic Set With ‘New’ Frontman CARDINAL COPIA (Video)

GHOST played a short acoustic set at a private event Friday night (April 6) premiering the band’s upcoming album. The three-song performance included the debut airing of the disc’s first single, “Rats”, which opens the album and is expected to be made available later this month. It was also the first time GHOST performed with its new frontman, who is named Cardinal Copia and apparently isn’t a part of the Papa Emeritus bloodline.


A brief video clip of the “Cirice”performance from last night’s event can be seen above.


The last Papa, Papa Emeritus III, was forcibly taken from the stage during the final show of the band’s “Meliora” tour cycle last fall, with Papa Zero arriving to announce the beginning of “the Middle Ages.” Of course, all the Papas — except the elder Zero — are the same man, GHOST founder and vocalist Tobias Forge.


Forge’s new alter ego will make his official live debut on May 5 as the Swedish band kicks off a run of North American dates in Riverside, California.


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MINISTRY IN MONTANA: Ministry – April 3rd 2018 @ The Wilma Theater – Missoula, MT


We wanted to give you loyalists a sneak peek of what to expect when I hit the Riv tomorrow night with Dale Patrick Bennett with camera in tow. Special thanks to Selena Fragassi and as always Heidi Ellen Robinson-Fitzgerald. – AZ


Ministry’s AmeriKKKant Tour wasn’t meant to appease the crowds looking for the nostalgic music of times past. The set list kicked off with numerous songs from the new album, including “I Know Words”, “Twilight Zone”, and “TV5/4Chan”. Burton C. Bell of Fear Factory made a guest appearance to sing on the tracks “Victims of a Clown”, “We’re Tired of It”, and “Wargasm”. Probably the most distinguishing of the tracks played from the new album was Antifa, chanting the phrase “We’re not snowflakes – We’re the ANTIFA.”

This all came across as a bit confusing at first, not having heard any of the new album until then. But uncle Al seemed to be on a mission. The man wanted to make a statement. And he made it quite clear that he’s obviously not happy with the current political administration’s practices and the direction our country is heading in once again. With giant inflatable chickens on stage emblazoned with marked out swastika’s, it was obvious from the get go that there was a very strong point to be made. And it was made. Loud. And very clearly.

After making his activist standpoint known, he played a few classics to round out the night and get the crowd roaring. Starting off with “Just One Fix” and ending up with “So What” I left for the night feeling satisfied with what I’d seen.
Chelsea Wolfe also deserves a shout out – a new and upcoming artist, she was a delightful opening act that I hope gets more attention as she continues to tour. – Kim McCort Cooper


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Ghost – Chapter 2: The Cardinal

GHOST has unveiled the “new” Papa in a three-minute video clip titled “Introducing The Cardinal.” In the clip, the band’s “new” leader comes face-to-face with an aged Papa Emeritus Zero and Sister Imperator after arriving from behind a door, bathed in red light. The new Papa, who is named Cardinal Copia and apparently isn’t a part of the Papa Emeritus bloodline at all, sports a thin mustache and has heterochromia iridum, a condition where the iris of one eye is a different color than the iris of the other eye.


The last Papa, Papa Emeritus III, was forcibly taken from the stage during the final show of the band’s “Meliora” tour cycle last fall, with Papa Zero arrived to announce the beginning of “the Middle Ages.” Of course, all the Papas — except the elder Zero — are the same man, GHOST founder and vocalist Tobias Forge.


Forge’s new alter ego will make his live debut on May 5 as the Swedish band kicks off a run of North American dates in Riverside, California.


The “Rats On The Road” trek, as it’s called, will be in support of the group’s fourth studio LP, which is tentatively due in June via Loma Vista Recordings. The disc was recorded last year at Artery studios in Stockholm with producer Tom Dalgety (OPETH, ROYAL BLOOD) and was mixed in January at Westlake Studios in West Hollywood, California with Andy Wallace (NIRVANA, SLAYER). Songtitles set to appear on the LP include “Rats”, “Life Eternal”, “Faith” and “Dance Macabre”.


“Rats”, the album’s first single, is expected to arrive later this month.


Forge told Revolver about the upcoming album: “It is loosely themed around the concept of death and doom. It’s a themed album around medieval times, but it’s definitely clinging onto a lot of very current things. The Black Death [plague] is a great example of a turning point for a whole civilization. Complete villages were annihilated. Most people knew very little, so all of it was God or the Devil — and about their faith being questioned: Why are we being stricken down by this great scourge? It must be because of our not fearing God enough and all this superstitious bullshit.


“There’s a lot that you would recognize today in online mannerisms,” he continued. “In many ways, we’ve gone back a few steps because now it’s closer to how it was back in the old days when people were standing at the square and all of a sudden, it’s like in Monty Python’s ‘Life Of Brian’: ‘Stone him! Ra! Ra! Ra!’ Public trials are very unsupervised and extremely swift and speak to the most primordial parts of us.”


In a separate interview with Metal Hammer, Forge talked about the musical direction of GHOST’s new album, saying: “It’s a very bright-sounding record. And it’s a very heavy record, I’d say, but not from a Metal Hammer point of view, meaning all metal through and through. But it’s a heavy record with a heavy theme. I think the overall ambience is very serious.


“Technically, a GHOST song could just be piano and vocals but it could also be full pounding, heavy-thrashing hard rock,” he added. “I’m not in any way comparing us to them but I guess our modus operandi is a little like what QUEEN did — just decide to play really good songs and not focus too much on sticking to a recipe.”


Forge last year revealed his identity while responding to a lawsuit filed by four former members of GHOST, who accused him of cheating them out of their rightful share of the profits from the group’s album releases and world tours.


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The Cars In The Studio For 40th Anniversary

SOURCE: www.inthestudio.net


The Cars‘ zero-to-platinum popularity came amidst the final fizzle of the mid-Seventies Punk Rock sparkler, and the sound and attitude that survived by Spring 1978 was labeled by at least one rock writer as the nebulous one-size-fits-none term New Wave. The drivetrain of the five man Boston band was always powered by the songs of Ric Ocasek. Growing up in the Otcasek household ( Ric(k) later would also drop the “t” from his surname ), early 1960s Sputnik paranoia and Telstar technology mixed with Cold War James Bond spy intrigue for Ric, courtesy of his father.


” He was a systems analyst for NASA,” Ocasek informed me.”There were ‘black boxes’ around our house that were locked. People from the government used to come and interview my Mom and ask her if he talked in his sleep!” The Cars’ test track where they had tuned up their sound was the mid-Seventies Boston club scene, and the first recording to roll off the assembly line,”Just What I Needed“, contains every musical hallmark of their identifiable style: the catchy simplicity of Ocasek’s songwriting; the half-spoken halting unconventional lead singing by both Ric and bass player Benjamin Orr, allowing The Cars to be a versatile hybrid crossover with all-terrain vocals; the insistent industrial beat by former Modern Lovers drummer David Robinson; the quirky, campy, reedy organ and synthesizer of Berklee School of Music grad Greg Hawkes; and the melodic yet economical lead guitar of Elliot Easton.


“We made that first record in twelve days,” says The Cars’ driving force Ric Ocasek in this In the Studio classic rock interview. What is even more remarkable is that The Cars would accelerate from regional Boston appeal in May 1978 to parked on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine by the following January with the headline “Best New Group”, eventually to sell seven million copies of that incredible debut album.


The Cars surprise hit debut ( #16 on Rolling Stone magazine’s Top 100 Debut Albums of All Time ), the torque of the Cars’ “Good Times Roll”, “My Best Friend’s Girl”, “Just What I Needed”, “You’re All I Got Tonight”, “Bye Bye Love”, the mesmerizing “Moving in Stereo”, and the plaintive lead vocal by the late Benjamin Orr “All Mixed Up” all propelled the cross-legged Woodstock generation off of their butts and back onto the dance floor. The sleek polished chrome and glass produced sound by Journey/ Queen veteran Roy Thomas Baker combined distinctive instrumental arrangements from rock and roll’s past in a way that, paradoxically, sounded cutting edge modern. Forty years later we still rev up this high-horsepower rock roadster which runs as well today as the day in May 1978 when The Cars rolled off the production line. Neck and neck with Heartbeat City as their best seller, The Cars is highly responsible for shuttling the band from the parking lot to get the green light for entrance into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In the Studio Ric Ocasek is behind the wheel with Greg Hawkes riding shotgun on The Cars fortieth anniversary. – Redbeard

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