Find out what were the Sleaze Roxx surprise CDs
Back on October 13, 2015, Sleaze Roxx readers were eligible to receive a free “surprise CD” if they donated $25 Cdn or more to Sleaze Roxx. This offer was only open until October 31, 2015 and was meant to offset the costs of the new Sleaze Roxx website. Thank you to everyone who contributed the the campaign as the various donations did help in offsetting the costs of the new Sleaze Roxx website!
In order to provide the aforementioned “free” CDs, a number of bands stepped up to assist Sleaze Roxx in its above undertaking and I thank all of them in that regard. Although there were quite a few bands that agreed to assist including Hessler, Last Bullet and Last Call Messiahs, the “main” surprise CDs ended up being Grimm Jack‘s 2015 released self-titled album and Shock‘s 2013 released debut album Once Denied.
Both bands have one common denominator. Both groups commenced back in the 1980s and had varying degrees of success before either calling it quits (Shock) or most of the core members leaving (Grimm Jack) before a reunion occurred for each band within the last couple of years.
Grimm Jack‘s frontman Billy Kohout was interviewed by Sleaze Roxx back in January 2016 and stated the following about the Grimm Jack classic line-up’s 20 year hiatus: “We had a little bit of a hiatus but during that time, I had taken over the reigns and it actually was in existence for a while but it kind of shifted gears in members so I was really for some of the time the only original member. You know, the original line-up had taken a hiatus for quite some time. To get that line-up together was in true Spinal Tap form [laughs]. There had been a lot of bad blood that had transpired so I figured that 20 years had gone by and it seemed like a good time [laughs].”
On the reasons for the bad blood between members, Kohout stated: “In typical rock and roll fashion I think. You know, we were doing so much work in such a little amount of time and it was the decadence of the ’80s so there was that whole lifestyle involved. We were showcasing with a major record company at the time. We were touring. There was too much going on and not enough oversight to kind of monitor what we were doing. And we kind of self-destructed from the inside out. In true rock and roll fashion, there is always a woman involved.”
With respect to the classic line-up reuniting, Kohout advised: “…it kind of became just me. It was me and Tommy. Tommy Lestat I think was the last standing member and then he jumped. I just kind of took it over from there. There are actually a bunch of songs that were recorded if you go on the reverb site or the reverbnation site. They are listed and [they are] a little different than the original Grimm Jack stuff but similar. It’s still me singing and you know, I was writing. But coming back to this point, this is something that I didn’t expect because five years ago when we put this together, I was contacted by Jim to do a project with him. It was him and the bass player G.G., and I heard some of the stuff that he did with a solo project that he had going on called Charming Bastards. I wasn’t really knocked out about it enough to make me part of that thing but I had not spoken with Jimmie in a while so it intrigued me to sit down with him and listen to some music and kind of rekindle that relationship.
Within half an hour, we started talking about Grimm Jack and I said, “Why don’t we just start by playing some old Grimm Jack songs?” Man, I love those songs. We had such a great time playing them and writing them and recording them. And relatively fast, it was like “Let’s get the original line-up — try to get it back together.” Within a few days, we met at a local pub that was kind of central to everybody and after a little bit of drinking, [we] decided to give it a shot and five years later, here it is you know? We have a couple of videos out. We have a new record that is doing great. It’s just awesome. I feel like, it is, you know, it’s like reuniting with the long lost family and I am happier now than I think that I have been in my whole career. Every minute with those guys is just magic.”
Sleaze Roxx stated the following in its review of Grimm Jack‘s self-titled album: “Knowing virtually nothing about Grimm Jack‘s history, what first struck me while listening to Thick As Thieves is how old school the album sounded in terms of riffs, varying tempos, melodies, sound and attitude with its tinge of southern rock. The group sounds so old school that the last song on the album — the aptly named “Last Call” — should have been on one of the first three KISS albums. I have not heard a band capture that classic old KISS song in a very long time. I don’t think that KISS could even recapture that sound these days!” Sleaze Roxx concluded its review by stating: “Grimm Jack advertise themselves as playing “quality rock and roll.” It’s one thing to come up with a cool advertising gimmick and it’s another thing to be able to back it up. In the case of Grimm Jack, Thick As Thieves is the content that backs up the gimmick “quality rock and roll.” If you were to pick up only one album this year, you would be making an excellent choice in picking up Grimm Jack‘s Thick As Thieves.”
Grimm Jack’s “Rotten To The Core” video:
Opening song on the Grimm Jack’s Thick As Thieves CD. Hard Rock, Glam and New York City…never a bad combination. Available at CDBaby, Amazon, Ebay, iTunes and GrimmJack.com
Canadian power metal veterans Shock have been the subject of a recent Sleaze Roxx series entitled Shock — Tales from the ’80s with the first two articles titled Opening for Megadeth in July 1986 and “Opening” for Motörhead on November 13, 1986.
Shock‘s bassist Steve Monette and co-founder, guitarist and lead singer Tony V were first interviewed by Sleaze Roxx upon announcing their comeback after 21 years of being apart. Monette stated the following about the group’s history, break up and reunion: “The history of the band is that it was started by John Tennant and Tony, and they brought in my brother Kevin Monette as the bass player and then they had successive drummers come in over the years. Spinal Tappish I guess (laughs) as is always the case with the drummers. Then, in the later years of the band — well, probably the last year of the band — John left and I had been playing bass in several other local metal bands at the time. But, I also played guitar so they said, ‘you know, if you have any interest in taking John’s place in the band?’ So I did, we played one show, lasted about six, seven months and realized, you know, things weren’t just going to work out so that’s when the band packed it in.
Fast forward to today — Tony contacted John, and he contacted my brother and the last drummer that we had, and said ‘you guys have any interest in getting back together, just hammering out the songs, having fun and enjoying playing them again?’ My brother had no interest at that point — I mean, he loved the music but it had been that many years since he played. I had still sort of played guitar a bit — I hadn’t really played too much in bands at all in that time period but I had kept up my playing ability enough that I felt that I could pick it up quickly. So, I came back as the bass player in Shock even though I was originally a guitarist in Shock but not THE guitarist (laughs).”
Sleaze Roxx was the first rock website to review Shock‘s debut album Once Denied and stated the following: “Most people are familiar with the expression “good things are worth waiting for”. That is certainly the case when listening to Canadian based power metal band Shock‘s CD Once Denied. Shock has finally released their first album after forming about 28 years ago — that could well establish some sort of record. Of note is that Shock has not been around for all those years but rather disbanded in 1990, after about five years, before reforming 21 years later in 2011.” Sleaze Roxx went on to conclude: “Once Denied is the kind of CD that you can play over and over again, and still really enjoy it! Unfortunately for Shock, they will now lose their “title” as one of the “best metal bands to never release an album”. Rather, Once Denied puts Shock on par to open the discussion for which power metal or thrash metal band has the greatest debut album of all time — as it has to be up there with Metallica‘s Kill ‘Em All and Iron Maiden‘s self-titled album as best debut in the genre.”
Shock‘s “Slashing To Live” video:
Go to www.shockmetal.ca to buy this song or the whole CD Once Denied which includes the video for Slashing to Live! This is the first video from the album, released May 4th, 2013. Like us on Facebook www.facebook.com/shockmetal **Watch in HD for best audio and video quality**