Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Iron Maidens

Up The Irons for Metal’s only female tribute band to Iron Maiden!

Love is a razor and I walked the line on that silver blade
Slept in the dust with his daughter, her eyes red with
The slaughter of innocence
And I will pray for her.
I will call her name out loud.
I would bleed for her.
If I could only see her now.

                    -Iron Maiden

It was in 2001, when these metal chicks form southern California wanted to break down the walls of madness and put an end to all the bullshit stereotypes, that girls cannot rock.  Well folks, that is a bold face lie! Rock City News, The L.A. Music Awards and The All Access Magazine will testify with that statement, and will back me up when I say that these female rockers have Balls, Attitude and Direction when it comes to playing Iron Maiden cover songs for their fans.

Members of this elite force include, Kirsten Rosenberg (a.k.a. “Bruce Chicinson”) lead vocals, Wanda Ortiz (a.k.a. Steph Harris) Bassist, Linda McDonald a.k.a. (Nikki Mc BURRain) drummer and Courtney Cox (a.k.a. Adriana Smith) Nita Strauss (a.k.a. Mega Murray) lead guitarist.  There is no shortage of raw talent and the concept was to have an all female act that wanted to play Maiden.  During an interview with Sarah Joelle, Rosenberg said, “ In a time when the music scene was lacking and live shows where sucking heavy, there wasn’t very many places to see a good band.  People wanted to have a good time, so the whole tribute thing stared happening.” What Kirsten Rosenberg is saying, it was time for something other then AC/DC and time to cover Iron Maiden.

Many wild and exciting years have whirled through the lives of these beautiful girls and on February 23, 2008 at the Hard Rock CafĂ© in Mexico City.  These hard hitting rockers had a chance to impersonate the greatness of Iron Maiden. On the bill that night was Six Hour Sundown with British vocalist, Laura Harris. She is the daughter of Iron Maiden bassist and founding member, Steve Harris. Inside the live audience, were Bruce Dickenson and Laura’s father to see the show. On another note, Derick Riggs (Iron Maiden’s band illustrator) offered his talents and helped out The Iron Maidens with their mascot named Edwina. Riggs came up with the idea of a zombie-like Parris Hilton and created this whore-beast that can devour a small boy or an eight-pack of Guinness in one gulp.

If you enjoy Aces High, The Trooper or Number of the Beast. Then you will fall in love with The Iron Maidens.  Lets face it- we need more Rock-n-Roll girls to cover some of the greatest bands of all time. Beside, who in their right mind would want to pay a ten dollar cover charge to see a bunch of old fat guys in spandex playing Led Zeppelin or U.F.O in the first place?  Not me, Hamilton! I'll go check out The Iron Maidens and be their groupie anytime. Until then, I remain, The Evil Genius!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Entering the crossroads of Heaven & Hell

 Chicago Metal and continuing a legacy. 


It was an accident when Toni Iommi had his fingertips cut off while working a punch press at a steel mill in Birmingham, England and created that Heavy Metal thunder we all know and love so well. To keep it short and simple, Ozzy was fired and Ronnie James Dio was the new front man for Black Sabbath and later changed their name to Heaven & Hell to avoid any confusion to concertgoers on who they were paying to see. Not before Heaven & Hell (a local Chicago tribute band) took the stage, and claimed the name rocking small venues in the midwest.

Photo Credit: Jessica Huffer
It has been a strange and brutally hot summer this year. I have been in the grip of Agony driving cross-country in 2010 Freightliner without an air conditioner, sweating like a whore in church along our nation's bible belt alone on Interstate 40. The dry scorching heat almost killed me, and now I was at my breaking point. "This is bullshit,"  I said to myself.  It's time to get your ass back home and enjoy some time off. It's time to bring this wagon back to the yard, get drunk off Guinness and dance naked to the feverish beats of Black Sabbath. Never mind that. Let’s talk about Heaven & Hell and one crazy Afternoon in Chicago.

That’s right folks, They had the name: Heaven & Hell first and in this world, money talks and lawyers walk right into court and get rich off your misery. So, without a big legal battle our Chicago Metal band lurks in the shadows and do what they do best. That is, playing live raw material from Ronnie James Dio and honor one the Grandfathers of Heavy Metal. “ It was pure love for the music.” explains Michael Posch, lead guitarist.  Other members include Warren Halvarson lead vocals, Jason Ward, Bass, and Scott Davidson, drums.  During this interview, Halvarson and Posh stated that “WISHING WELL” and “FALLING OFF THE EDGE OF THE WORLD”  were hard songs to master.  What they are trying to say is… if you want to get to Carnegie Hall, you need to practice.

Their set list was great as they played MOB RULES, FAIRIES WEAR BOOTS, and of course, HEAVEN & HELL. One can feel the energy they poured out in each song as they cranked out all the old classics at  Gary Olson's Birthday Bash, with special Guests Rival and High Alert. The best thing that afternoon was the crowd and all the excitement in the summer breeze. One beer truck, three great bands and 100's Metal fans at Bunker Hill Woods is what  Chicagoans will remember in 2012.