Saturday, December 13, 2014

LOCAL CONCERT ALERTS (Highway 63), New Video Finds, And More!!

After a two day run of weekend concert previews and battle of the bands updates, let's take a look at other stories from recent days before we dive back into the battle pool, and believe me, there's big news on both to mention shortly! For now, we have some neat video finds, assorted recent notes, and leading off, LOCAL CONCERT ALERTS for over the holidays, so here's what you need to know!

Newer Sault Michigan classic/hard rock quartet Highway 63 will play their last gigs of the year (barring a New Year's Eve show) when they return to The Rapids Lounge at the Sault Michigan Kewadin Casino on Friday, December 26th and Saturday, December 27th! Coming just three weeks after the Sir Charge successors' most recent Soo Kewadin dates, I will note that these shows are not among those listed on Kewadin Casino's entertainment page, but they may be waiting to list the 2015 schedule there before updating it. The Switzers and company should be in good form after a successful late 2014 string of concerts, so if you're up for some post Christmas hard rock action, you know where to be! Our source is the band's Facebook page, which also revealed yesterday that the guys are getting ready to record "our demo for the Petoskey casino", presumably meaning that they're auditioning to play gigs at the Odawa Casino & Resort there.

Sault area cover bands playing in the Lower Peninsula aren't unheard of (Highway 63 bassist Chris Leask has played down there with Power Slug), and it'd be great exposure, so hopefully things work out for the guys on that front! As for their Boxing Day weekend shows in the Soo, there's no announced cover charges, 21+ age limits, and 9:00 PM start times in effect, so check the above links for more details, and stay tuned for more from Highway 63 as we hear it!

Next up, here's some older performance videos that we just recently came across on YouTube, starting with defunct Sault Ontario hard rock cover quartet Sneaky Pete live at The Rockstar Bar! Uploaded to lead guitarist Mario Carlucci's YouTube channel in October, the video itself is undated, but it was likely filmed in 2011 (it's not the same show as the one we filmed at in January 2012, and they didn't play live in other years.) The almost 9 minute long video features Sneaky Pete covering Guns N' Roses' "Mr. Brownstone" before transitioning to Ozzy Osbourne's "Crazy Train" to close what was filmed, and the guys sound good here! Mike Oakley's vocal range does come up short at times, but Sneaky Pete had chemistry and a good thing going, and it's s shame that they only played live concerts for less then a year after such a long stretch of preparation. The colours are also badly washed out after post-correction, but kudos to Mario for posting this after 3 years! Give it a look below!, and hopefully the guys turn up in bands again!

Also today, remember how Mourning Wood drummer T.J. Case frequently takes over lead vocals for renditions of AC/DC's "Highway To Hell" during their shows? Well, it turns out that he's been singing AC/DC live long before Mourning Wood were ever a thought, as evidenced by a video posted on YouTube over 4 years ago! Uploaded by user TheLilspirit, this appears to come from his brief run with the veteran local rock band Wishbone, specifically their show at The Roosevelt Hotel (now Reggie's West) on November 20th, 2010. While the Dennis Duguay-fronted band is best known for their original material, they do play the occasional cover, and TheLilspirit filmed 2 at this show, including The Surfaris' instrumental "Wipe Out" and the aforementioned AC/DC cover, though in this case, T.J. and Wishbone did AC/DC's classic "TNT". Both are well performed, and while "TNT" benefits from having two guitarists, the backing vocals are barely audible & aren't as effective.

I'll also note that both videos are definitely centered on T.J. over Wishbone (the songs are credited to T.J. only in the title, and the other Wishbone members aren't in frame), but a reason for the single member focus isn't stated. Maybe the filmer has a personal connection, and/or the videos are intended as a solo showcase? Give Wishbone's "TNT" cover a look below, see more above, and don't miss Mourning Wood at Rednecks TONIGHT!

Finally for today, here's three assorted shorter items from the last while, and as usual, these are in alphabetical order by artist name:

  •  Local funk/hard rock quartet The Elements have quietly been added to the lineup for the second annual X-Mess acoustic punk show at The Algonquin Pub next week, as per the Facebook event page a few days ago. No word on how their set will adapt to an unplugged setting (especially concerning drums), but it's great to see the guys on board for this seasonal event! Stay tuned for more updates, and the first 11 people in the door on Saturday will get a gift!
  • Redundant frontman/Thrill Junkies bassist Justin Langlois is looking to join another band on bass, saying "I need to play more bass" via a post on the Musicians Wanted Facebook group this past Friday. Justin's talent and resume speaks for itself, but if you're interested in jamming with him, message him above or at this link!
  • Speaking of bassist searches, a new local modern rock/punk band named Stereo North are also looking for a bassist, as per a post on the Musicians Wanted group yesterday by drummer Brett Norton. The band is comprised of experienced members, have a setlist ready with new and old songs, and plan to begin playing live once a bassist is found. If you want to try out for Stereo North, message Brett A.S.A.P. at this link or at the Musicians Wanted group!

That's all for now, but stay tuned for more updates over the weekend, especially concerning both of next year's battles of the bands and the acts playing them! Thanks everyone!

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