CD/DVD Review: The Rolling Stones – From the Vault: The Marquee Club – Live In 1971

CD/DVD Review: The Rolling Stones – From the Vault: The Marquee – Live In 1971
Eagle Rock Entertainment
All Access Rating: A

The Rolling Stones - From
The Vault: The Marquee Club -
Live In 1971
Still a month away from the hotly anticipated release of Sticky Fingers, the Rolling Stones – fresh off their "1971 Farewell Tour of the UK" – set up at London's famed Marquee Club for a rare intimate performance filmed for American television.

Eric Clapton was there to see it, and so was Jimmy Page, among others of similar stature. And the Stones showed them all how it was done, their swagger born of an innate knowledge that nobody, but nobody, could touch them on a good night, let alone a great one.

And to think, highly sought-after footage of that gig sat in an attic for two decades, just gathering dust. What better time than the present for its new unveiling, now that the Stones have reissued, in grand fashion, Sticky Fingers in all its gritty, cocksure glory.

Restored with loving care by Bob Clearmountain, its impressive 5.1 surround sound on the DVD and SD Blu-ray versions and rich, luxuriously colorful imagery capturing the essence of a band at the absolute peak of its powers, "From the Vault: The Marquee Club – Live In 1971" finds the Stones brimming with confidence and unafraid to mess around with songs considered sacred by many. They're almost cavalier in how they approach a rather ramshackle, easy-going version of "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" that seems gleefully out of step with the urgency and the barely contained sexual frustration of the original. And after romping through "Midnight Rambler" with feverish energy, the Stones sounding as tight and industrious as ever, and Mick Jagger huffing and puffing away on harmonica, a wide, natural smile spreads across Keith Richards' face and it says, "That was pretty good, wasn't it?" Yes it was, Keith. Yes it was.

Strutting and preening, as is his wont, the playful Jagger is a magnet for smartly directed cameras and close-ups, as he savors every line dripping from a slowly cooked "I Got The Blues," throws himself into a raucous cover of Chuck Berry's "Let It Rock" and, as Ian Stewart's high-stepping piano gets to work, infuses machismo, arrogance and sass into the ripping opener "Live With Me." Charlie Watt's drumming is clever, propulsive and rigorous, while Bill Wyman calmly and unobtrusively steers the ship with gripping bass lines, Bobby Keys and Jim Price assertively blow their horns with soulful conviction on command and Richards and Mick Taylor negotiate whatever issues they had with an uneasy mixture of toughness and licks that can be nasty or tasteful.

Packaged as a CD/DVD combo, and also available as a DVD/LP or Blu-ray/CD offering, "From The Vault: The Marquee Club – Live In 1971" is a true treasure, since much of material has gone completely unseen. Filmed professionally with a thirst for action and seemingly covered in a lush, early '70s patina that's almost glossy, it has great historical value. This is where the forbidden fruits of "Brown Sugar," "Bitch" and a crisply played "Dead Flowers" were first tasted, and they must have left the ragged company that witnessed it flush with excitement. Eagle Rock Entertainment ups the ante on this concise, yet explosive set, with alternate takes of "I Got The Blues" and "Bitch," plus a bit of the Stones doing "Brown Sugar" on "Top Of The Pops" in 1971 adding value. All these years later, the Stones are still delivering the goods in concert, but they were hitting on all cylinders in 1971, and this is the kind of show that made them legends.
– Peter Lindblad

CD Review: High On Fire – Luminiferous

CD Review: High On Fire – Luminiferous
eOne Music
All Access Rating: B+

High On Fire - Luminiferous 2015
Matt Pike's struggles with sobriety have been well-documented. If nothing else, the swarming, fire-breathing Luminiferous would suggest that his head is as clear as it's ever been.

Where High On Fire's previous effort, the violently turbulent epic De Vermis Mysteriis, seemed as if it was birthed in the eye of a violent hurricane, the latest album from Pike and his crew encounters its share of storms, but it rarely ever gets knocked off course.

There are exceptions, of course, this being Matt Pike we're talking about. The dreamy, psychotropic verses of "The Cave" trip balls, as mind-altering effects and vocal manipulations send High On Fire down the rabbit hole. Then come the slow-churning waves of skull-crushing riffs, enormously heavy and portending doom, as Pike's scabrous vocals cut through the seas of sludge like a man-o-war with a hull covered in barnacles. Meanwhile, "The Falconist," surging ahead methodically and relentlessly as it grows wings to fly, couches its story in a crawling, strong melodic current that's almost hypnotic, as High On Fire channels the spirit of Iron Maiden as they soar.

A raging, barbaric beast of a record, Luminiferous beats its hairy chest until its black and blue, roaring through the white-hot thrash of "Slave The Hive" and the album's furious title track. A direct assault, it charges ahead with little regard for whatever gets in its way, as High On Fire plows through "The Black Plot," "Carcosa," and "The Sunless Years" – the album's first three tracks – in succession, feeling the might and maniacal drive of its engine and pushing it almost beyond its capabilities.

It's a leaner, meaner and more focused High On Fire that emerges from Luminiferous; on the other hand, it's a less imaginative representation of the band. There's also a sense, at least half the way through, that they're stuck in one gear, unable or unwilling to deviate from a fairly predictable course they've charted. It seems as if Luminiferous is destined to be overshadowed by De Vermis Mysteriis, the sheer enormity and frenzied combustion of that record drowning in its wake all that comes after it. Still, with Pike's flesh-flaying solos and throat-shredding vocals, Des Kensel's pummeling drums and Jeff Matz's heavy, bombing bass runs, there is no more powerful metal force in the universe than High On Fire. Even if variety, insanity and unexpected maneuvers are sacrificed for pure power here, Luminiferous is another weapon of mass destruction in the High On Fire arsenal.
– Peter Lindblad

DVD Review: Slash – Live at the Roxy 25.9.14

DVD Review: Slash  –- Live at the Roxy 25.9.14
Eagle Rock Entertainment
All Access Rating: B+

Slash and Myles Kennedy
and the Conspirators - Live
at The Roxy 25.9.14
While plundering and pillaging the Sunset Strip in the '80s, the hurricane of debauchery and gritty rock 'n' roll that was Guns 'N Roses had occasion to roll through the famed Roxy Theatre, just as it had torn through places like the Troubadour and the Whisky a Go Go.

They say you can never go home again, but Slash and his band, The Conspirators, featuring Myles Kennedy, did just that last fall, slamming into the Roxy again like a Category-5 storm five years after the cozy, intimate club played host to their first-ever gig together. A powder keg of a concert DVD, "Live at the Roxy 25.9.14" – coupling rich, robust sound with dramatic camera work that puts viewers right in the middle of the crowd and shoots the action from well-chosen angles – captures them in all their blazing glory, just inches away from fans hanging on every nasty, dirty riff and searing lead.

Trading the thrilling unpredictability and reckless danger of Guns 'N Roses' salad days for tidy professionalism and sobriety, Slash whips his charges through a sweaty, rip-roaring set of old favorites and new material that spans the legendary guitarist's entire career. Ballsy, swaggering, full-throttle rockers like "Rocket Queen," highlighted by Slash's dynamic, smoldering soloing, and "Nightrain" get a vigorous workout, as do "Sweet Child O' Mine" and "Paradise City," an exhilarating encore that shakes the rafters. Frenzied and full of piss and vinegar, "You're Crazy," where bassist Todd Kerns admirably takes over singing duties, stands out among the four bonus tracks on "Live at the Roxy 25.9.14" – which includes an electrifying take on "Stone Blind" from Slash's latest LP – but it's Kennedy who shines on the vicious kiss-off "You're a Lie" and a swinging "Back From Cali," his clarion voice cutting through the raucous din.

And for Slash, for this performance, the opportunity to show off his acoustic Spanish guitar licks during a rousing "Anastasia" is one he couldn't possibly turn down, and it's a beautiful moment, as its mix of infectious riffs and classical elements soar in this environment. Available in multiple formats from Eagle Rock Entertainment, including an innovative Bit Torrent bundle, a three-LP set and a two-CD version, as well as a DVD, "Live at the Roxy 25.9.14" catches Slash and company on a celebratory night, their cohesion, skilled chops and energy making up for the nagging feeling that maybe this particular collection of musicians is growing too comfortable, too complacent, too satisfied with itself and what it's already achieved. Maybe the next album will push the envelope a bit. If not, at least Slash and the boys seem capable of producing good rock 'n roll, and these days, that's nothing to take for granted.
– Peter Lindblad

Book Review – Primus, Over The Electric Grapevine: Insight Into Primus and the World of Les Claypool

Book Review  Primus, Over The Electric Grapevine: Insight Into Primus and the World of Les Claypool
Author: Greg Prato
Akashic Books
All Access Rating: A-

Greg Prato - Primus, Over
The Electric Grapevine
Most recently, noted music writer Greg Prato chronicled the heady early years of Iron Maiden, compiling a fast-paced, absolutely engrossing oral history of the brief, but explosive, Paul Di'Anno era. Last fall, the ever prolific Prato meticulously traced the long, strange trip of Les Claypool and the oddball alternative-rock circus called Primus in "Primus, Over The Electric Grapevine," out via Akashic Books.

While the Iron Maiden book was more of a snapshot of a band on the brink of greatness, just as the movement that would become known as the New Wave of British Heavy Metal was gathering strength, Prato's Primus primer covers the entire history of this wildly original combo and one of the most unlikely success stories to emerge from the '90s alternative-rock zeitgeist.

A master storyteller, skilled in the art of assembling oral histories that not only examine their subjects in great depth but also spin a great yarn, Prato is able to combine a thorough study of Claypool's eccentric genius with a relaxed, free-flowing narrative of the Primus' origins story, detailing influences and lineup changes, early performances and the making of landmark Primus albums from Suck on This to Frizzle Fry and the breakthrough LP Sailing the Seas of Cheese on through Tales From the Punchbowl and more, while also tracking their rise to fame and tours with Rush and U2.

Casting a wide net in terms of interview subjects, Prato weaves together commentary from a multitude of sources. Everyone from former and current Primus members to Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett – a friend of Claypool's from childhood – and Rush bassist Geddy Lee, Public Enemy's Chuck D, "South Park" creator Matt Stone, Phish's Trey Anastasio, and Tom Waits, just to name a few, gets a say and contributes to the tale, but Prato doesn't stop there, interviewing less famous friends and associates, including "Trouz," the band's road manager to develop a well-rounded and rich portrayal.

Done in conjunction with Primus, "Primus, Over The Electric Grapevine" doesn't get bogged down by minutiae, and although it could called an "exhaustive" work, it's far from an exhausting read. It is dense with anecdotes and behind-the-scenes revelations, the whimsical, all-over-the-map read revealing how music videos for "Jerry Was a Race Car Driver" and "Tommy The Cat," among others, were created, while sharing tales of the characters that inspired such classic songs as "Fish On" and "Those Damned Blue-Collar Tweakers."

And yet for all the conversation regarding their insane musical chops and the hilarious mayhem caused by the inimitable Bob C. Cock, the greatest accomplishment of Prato's work is how it paints Claypool as an artist able to craft something sublime and absurdly funny out of the mundane, all while staying surprisingly grounded. Remarkably candid and often irreverent, Claypool and the universe he inhabits – where fishing is not only a favorite pastime, but also provides comedic fodder, and people like "Flouncin' Fred" play key supporting roles – could be the subject of a Fellini movie. Not that Hollywood would ever have the gumption to turn Prato's book into a screenplay. Or, would they?
– Peter Lindblad

CD Review: Lucifer – Lucifer I

CD Review: Lucifer – Lucifer I
Rise Above Records
All Access Rating: A

Lucifer - Lucifer I 2015
Having buried The Oath a year ago, witchy singer Johanna Sadonis ran straight into welcoming embrace of Lucifer, demonic necromancers that have resuscitated the hoary corpse of '70s proto-metal and tortured blues for nefarious purposes.

A three-piece she formed that includes Garry Jennings, formerly of U.K. doom-metal mongers Cathedral, as co-songwriter and studio guitarist, Lucifer is the cover subject of the latest issue of Decibel magazine and Lucifer I, from Rise Above Records, is the first spell they've cast.

Heirs to the fuzzed-out, doom-laden stomp, sinister swing and distorted propulsion of Black Sabbath, the "occult-rock" revivalists also pay their respects to Deep Purple, Blue Oyster Cult, Blue Cheer and Led Zeppelin on a spectral, yet ruggedly heavy, debut album cloaked in gloom. Seeming to ring out from beyond the grave, Sadonis's distant, haunting vocals only enhance the chilling effect of Lucifer's sinister lyrics, and for everything else about Lucifer's birth that make black masses salivate, it's her singing that calls us to worship.

Lucifer's Decibel magazine cover
Their hotly anticipated maiden voyage of the damned is full of dark, slowly churning dirges, such as "Purple Pyramid" and "Sabbath," where eerie church bells predict a funereal descent. What separates Lucifer from the horde of Sabbath pretenders is the songwriting wizardry of Lucifer I and its ability to authentically conjure the black magic of influences such as Pentagram, as they wickedly unleash the hellhounds in the gathering momentum of opener "Abracadabra" and "Izrael" embeds the mournful, spine-tingling wail of Sadonis in solemn, melodic sacraments and seductive hooks.

What lessons Lucifer learned from grandfathers Tony Iommi, Bill Ward and Geezer Butler are ingrained in "Morning Star," "Total Eclipse" and "A Grave For Each One Of Us," all of them blustery cauldrons of evil riffs that suddenly, but artfully, shift gears and hijack these songs, demanding they go to places – driven in a hearse, of course – that are similar, but different, from those already marked on whatever map they're following. In the process, the tracks complete metamorphoses into strange, compelling new shapes and personalities. Somebody has made one incredible deal with the devil.
– Peter Lindblad

KISS Collectibles To Invade The 2015 Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction

Gene Simmons' full KISS Psycho Circus Tour Worn Body Armor

Backstage Auctions is hosting its annual Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction - an epic event of authentic memorabilia that comes directly from bands such as Megadeth, Slayer, Anthrax, Testament, Lita Ford, Exodus, Ratt, The Cult, Slipknot and many others.
With over 1,000 auction lots, this annual spectacle is a highlight moment for collectors around the globe - and the party wouldn't be the same without KISS! 

Not only will there be KISS memorabilia...there are nearly 250 lots, making KISS the # 1 supplier of collectibles in the auction. That little fact is hardly a surprise; the contents of the auction however are nothing short of spectacular.

With consignments coming from Debra Svensk (Peter Criss' 2nd wife), the estate of Eric Carr and several former KISS crew members, the auction spans 4 decades of KISStory.

Among the many highlights are several incredible Peter Criss mementos that range from worn KISS jackets and 1970s era jewelry, to handwritten lyrics and original artwork. His 1978 drawing of Gene Simmons is especially noteworthy.

The Eric Carr estate managed to supply some never-before-offered items such as clothing, artwork and signed pieces. There is also a slew of new memorabilia and beautiful record awards.

From the group of former KISS crew members there is a host of picks, sticks, itineraries, shirts and other mementos, including an Ace Frehley worn Reunion Tour bathrobe, a fully signed 1979 Bally pinball machine, the oldest set of KISS signatures known-to-exist and even Gene's full Psycho Circus tour worn body armor. There are historic documents, awesome posters, prototype toys and many autographed pieces.

Special mention is to be given to an impressive offering of KISS vinyl, as well as a large collection of official Reunion era merchandise that knows no boundaries.

The Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction will be live from June 20th – 28th with a special VIP Preview that starts June 13th. If you are not registered for your All Access Auction Pass, rock on over and sign up today – it takes just a minute and there is no fee to sign up.
Link: All Access Registration

Follow Backstage Auctions on Twitter and Facebook for auction highlights before, during and after the event. 

Drumroll Please...Welcome The Many Heads Of Mike Portnoy

He doesn't always take a break, but when he does, he will be in two continents at the same time, recording with one band and performing with two others.

Mike Portnoy is the heavy-metal personification of the energizer bunny. With arms like an octopus and the brains of a polymath, Portnoy is as versatile as they come. And the beauty of it is all driven by his unrelenting passion for (making) music.

Mike recently found 23 minutes of unexpected free time and decided to pull the rake through his closet to select an impressive assortment of high-caliber collectibles that will hit the auction block next week.

Partnering with Backstage Auctions, Portnoy is offering a wide range of recording used drum sticks and drum heads, as well as a jaw-dropping collection of concert used bass drum heads, that include tours with Dream Theater, Liquid Tension Experiment, Transatlantic, Flying Colors and even Yellow Mellow Custard.

But why stop there? If a G3 tour used bass drum won't fill your appetite, or a complete set of his very first ever drum road cases, Mike has done something that's even a first for him; letting go of a complete drum kit. And not just any kit - we are talking about his legendary Mapex kit as used on the 1994 - 1995 'Awake' album recording and tour.

Mike Portnoy's Mapex Drum Kit
Owning a true piece of Mike Portnoy memorabilia does not come with the guarantee that you will end up being the virtuoso he is, but it does come with a signed Certificate of Authenticity, a great deal of history and the spirit of passion and inspiration!

The Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction will be live from June 20th – 28th with a special VIP Preview that starts June 13th. If you are not registered for your All Access Auction Pass, rock on over and sign up today – it takes just a minute and there is no fee to sign up.
Link: All Access Registration

Follow Backstage Auctions on Twitter and Facebook for auction highlights before, during and after the event. 

Mustaine and Ellefson Memorabilia Featured in Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction

Vics Garage Panel
Following last years' downright epic Megadeth auction, fans and collectors should get ready for an encore auction event in this years Rock Gods & Metal Monsters auction set to go live June 20 - 28th, 2015.

The historic December 2014 Megadeth auction offered a massive range and assortment of authentic touring and recording gear and equipment from the past two decades. Rather than collecting unnecessary dust, Dave Mustaine lead the initiative to put these trusted road warrior pieces in the hands of his loyal fans and followers. The result was that nearly 90% of the inventory found a new destination - to all four corners of the world!

After giving it a short break - and spending time in the studio to work on the next Megadeth album - Mustaine is putting the remainder lots back on the auction block in the coming week. And we're not talking about leftovers here - these are prime-time mementos that will elevate the prestige of any Megadeth collection.

Included are several impressive road cases, amps & cabinets, huge stage backdrops and even acoustic panels from Dave's legendary "Vic's Garage" studio. Adding a personal touch to the inventory, Dave has made a great selection of concert used guitar strings and guitar picks used throughout the years in virtually every continent.  Dave Mustaine's Megadeth memorabilia can be found in the Megadeth - Dave Mustaine category.

Dave Mustaine's Big 4 Guitar Strings

David Ellefson is also pitching in with two of his personal tour and studio signature bass guitars which are both absolute monsters! These Jackson custom shop guitars are not for the faint of heart. Ellefson's guitars can be found in the David Ellefson category.

David Ellefson Bass Guitar

The Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction will be live from June 20th – 28th with a special VIP Preview that starts June 13th. If you are not registered for your All Access Auction Pass, rock on over and sign up today – it takes just a minute and there is no fee to sign up.
Link: All Access Registration

Follow Backstage Auctions on Twitter and Facebook for auction highlights before, during and after the event. 

Anthrax Metal Gods Ian, Benante and Bello Have More to Offer at the Auction Block

Benante, Bello and Ian - The Anthrax Triangle
The inseparable triangle of Anthrax -  Ian, Benante and Bello - have once more raked through their closets to put some historic Anthrax gear and collectibles in the hands of their fans.

There is no denying that Anthrax is and probably always will be one of the top collectible metal bands around. From guitars, drum heads, stage worn attire to promo items, passes, picks and sticks, fans and collectors snatch up Anthrax memorabilia – regardless of price or age, it simply doesn't matter.

Partnering with Backstage Auctions, Scott Ian has selected no less than seven historic tour and album recording used guitars that will make you go all 'Air Ian'. From one-of-a-kind 'Zombie' and 'Dharma' guitars to unique prototypes such as the infamous Murder Weapon and Urban Camo.

Ian's Concert Used Custom Designed 'Zombie' Guitar
And if winning one of his guitars wasn't enough...the winning buyer (+1) will be invited to meet Scott Ian "anywhere, anytime" on tour. You will get the opportunity to meet Scott, take pictures with him, have him sign your memorabilia and be treated like a true VIP!

Benante's Stomp 442 Drum Kit
Charlie Benante is parting with something that he has never done before - his supply of coffee! Of course we're kidding - but his complete 'Stomp 442' Kit is no joke. Used for the entire album recording, as well as the subsequent two-year world tour, this kit is of 'Rock Hall' worthy proportions. 

And if the kit is too much for you (or your neighbors), no fear, as there is a great selection of used drum heads, sticks, stage worn shirts, tour itineraries and an impressive collection of vintage laminated passes. Charlie's original artwork for the Dimebag Darrell tribute deserves special mention - and a special place in a special collection of a special fan.

Frank Bello completes the offering a cool memorabilia with tour used shirts and shoes, a signature bass guitar and a highly collectible, classic Anthrax line-up signed lithograph.

Bello Signed Signature Bass Guitar

The Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction will be live from June 20th – 28th with a special VIP Preview that starts June 13th. If you are not registered for your All Access Auction Pass, rock on over and sign up today – it takes just a minute and there is no fee to sign up.
Link: All Access Registration

Follow Backstage Auctions on Twitter and Facebook for auction highlights before, during and after the event. 

Alex Skolnick Unlocks His Vault Of Vintage Testament Treasures for Auction

Alex Skolnick
For more than 3 decades Alex Skolnick has shared his near immeasurable talents with all of us.  Known as one of the fastest and technically skilled guitarists in modern rock history, it takes all but one Testament live gig to be left in awe!

Like many great minds, Alex didn't limit that sharing to touring and recording with his legendary Bay Area Trash band; from writing columns in Guitar magazine and offering lectures, to penning down his memories in a must-read book and straight-up, old school sit-down guitar lessons with aspiring shredders, Skolnick has made it a goal to spread his 6-string gospel.

Well, the sharing has taken on a new dimension as Alex has opened the doors to his vault of vintage touring and recording memorabilia! In partnership with Backstage Auctions, Skolnick is offering up a most impressive collection of vintage guitars, gear, stage worn clothing and historical ephemera that is set to hit the auction block.

Skolnicks pre-Testament days guitar
Among the highlights are three of his oldest guitars that date back to the pre-Testament days when the band was locally known as Legacy. Each of these guitars has a phenomenal touring and recording history and are absolute crown-jewels. In addition to several sets of Marshall amp & cabinet combos and a colorful array of vintage pedals, the auction will also feature a unique assortment of recording and sound equipment.

And then there are the shirts and jackets...from vintage mid 1980s stage worn shirts to exclusive leather Testament tour jackets, it's all there. Coupled with rare paper goods such as itineraries, tour programs, signed vinyl and vintage Legacy concert handbills, Testament collectors will have to pinch themselves more than once to realize that this is not a dream. Rounding out the auction are cool mementos from the time Alex was carrying the guitar torch for the likes of Savatage and Ozzy Osbourne.

Owning a true piece of Alex Skolnick memorabilia does not come with the guarantee that you will end up being the virtuoso he is, but it does come with a signed Certificate of Authenticity, a great deal of history and the spirit of passion and inspiration!

The Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction will be live from June 20th – 28th with a special VIP Preview that starts June 13th. If you are not registered for your All Access Auction Pass, rock on over and sign up today – it takes just a minute and there is no fee to sign up.
Link: All Access Registration

Follow Backstage Auctions on Twitter and Facebook for auction highlights before, during and after the event. 


Lita Ford Set To Auction Historic Collection of Guitars and Stage Worn Clothing

Lita Ford
You can call her the Queen of Noise, you can call her the Queen of Metal. Heck, she will even refer to herself as ‘The Bitch with the Hot Guitar’. But whatever the name, Lita Ford is one of the all-time premier female rock stars!

With a career that started 40 years ago as the lead guitarist for The Runaways, Lita Ford has maintained herself on the basis of a strong recording catalog, relentless touring and a loyal, world-wide fan base. She is easily one of the hardest working female rockers in the business and there is no break in sight anytime soon.

To celebrate those four decades of being a highly visible musician, Lita is opening her cramped closets to share a great selection of treasures with her fans. Partnering with Backstage Auctions, she has personally put together nearly 100 lots that include guitars, road cases and laminated backstage passes, all the way to stage worn clothing and even a selection of historic wear from her years with The Runaways.

The Runaways 70s black cat suit
Among the highlights are her famous The Runaways black cat suit that dates back to 1976. Also from those ‘Cherry Bomb’ days is an impressive selection of stage worn t-shirts, as well as several great pieces from the legendary 1977 Japan Tour, including an exceptionally rare tour jacket and promoter shirt.

From the 1980s all the way through current day, Lita has put together a jaw-dropping array of recognizable and iconic clothing items that were worn in videos, album covers, promotional events and on stage. From dresses, jackets, pants, tops and shirts, all the way to shoes, boots, belts, bracelets and bras! It would be unfair to highlight just one or two of them, but the ‘Wicked Wonderland’ wedding dress is as intimidating as it is visually stunning.

And if guitars are your thing – there are no less than 10 great models to pick and choose from, including Lita’s famous red B.C. Rich. Only two of these were ever made – and Lita is breaking up the twins exclusively for this event! Equally great are her famous Alvarez guitars from the early 1990s or her ‘Vixens’ from more recent years. The auction also features several road cases, a phenomenal amp, and a fine selection of Lita’s own laminated ‘Artist’ backstage passes.

Lita Ford's famous red B.C. Rich guitar

All items have been personally signed by Lita and will also include a separately signed Certificate of Authenticity. This is a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity to own not only a personal item from the Queen of Noise, but a piece that has played a role in music history!

The Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction will be live from June 20th – 28th with a special VIP Preview that starts June 13th. If you are not registered for your All Access Auction Pass, rock on over and sign up today – it takes just a minute and there is no fee to sign up.
Link: All Access Registration

Follow Backstage Auctions on Twitter and Facebook for auction highlights before, during and after the event. 


Backstage Auctions’ Rock Gods and Metal Monsters 2015

By: Pat Prince, Editor of Goldmine Magazine

On June 20, Houston-based auction house Backstage Auctions will begin its annual Rock Gods and Metal Monsters Auction. Consisting of memorabilia from iconic rock ‘n’ roll artists and the heaviest bands on the planet, the Rock Gods and Metal Monsters Auction is as interesting and rock solid as any annual music auction there is.
Gene Simmons body armor from the KISS Psycho Circus tour.

Goldmine asked Backstage Auctions owner Jacques van Gool a few questions about the upcoming Rock Gods and Metal Monsters Auction, which runs June 20-28 (special VIP preview June 13-19) and will feature over 1,000 hard rock and heavy metal auction lots. 

GOLDMINE: Why and when did you decide to make the Rock Gods and Metal Monsters Auction an annual event?

JACQUES VAN GOOL: Well, let’s see, this is our fourth one in four years, so 2011 was the first time. The reason why is multiple; it’s a lot of fun, we’re very comfortable handling “all things” Hard-Rock and Heavy-Metal and most importantly, there is a growing number of collectors who wants Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax and Slayer over Jefferson Airplane, Grateful Dead and the Beach Boys.

GM: In your opinion, what artist is a perfect example of a ‘Rock God,’ and then a ‘Metal Monster’?

VAN GOOL: Ha, that’s a interesting question. When I think of a Rock God, I’m visualizing a music icon with universal reach and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame level accomplishments. Actually, that might not be such a good answer because the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is hardly the yardstick for what’s relevant, but figure of speech…think KISS, Ted Nugent, Steven Tyler, Angus Young, Eddie Van Halen, Rob Halford, Lemmy etc.

Metal Monsters are the guys and girls who are the gorilla glue that keep this metal community together. They all are and have been carrying the metal torches and flags for decades and they are the ones who have written and performed the metal anthems that so many of us grew up with; Scott Ian, Dave Mustaine, Gary Holt, Alex Skolnick, Lita Ford, Mike Portnoy and so on. Not surprisingly, we have many Metal Monster consigners!

GM: How is heavy metal becoming the new genre to collect?

VAN GOOL: For starters, I think it’s an age thing. Right now the most active demographic that collects are people, mostly male, between the ages of 35 and 55, who grew up on music from the 1980s and 1990s. Setting aside a few big pop stars, those were the years of heavy metal, hair metal,
Paul Bostaph (Slayer) gloves, sticks and drum head.
thrash metal, industrial metal, grunge rock, as well as the early days of nu-metal. The other reason is that ‘anything’ rock and metal has always created a more fanatical crowd due to the whole counterculture element. The metal genre has created – and continues to create – a high level of loyalty. Once a metalhead, always a metalhead. Combine that with the graphic element of metal – something that is exceptionally strong and important, and you will find a community that expresses their love for ‘their kind of music’ through t-shirts, patches, buttons, fashion, posters, vinyl, etc. Even if you don’t care for metal, you simply can’t deny the cool factor. Do you want to hang a poster of a weepy dude with an acoustic guitar on your wall or would you like to see Manowar getting ready for battle? Next…!!!

GM: Are other ‘80s genres coming to the forefront of collectibility?

VAN GOOL: Not as strong but I certainly see potential for (British) New Wave and Synth-Pop (New Order, The Smiths, The Residents, Kraftwerk) and Post-Punk. Clearly 1980s Pop – or at least the A-list – has already been collectible for quite some time now, such as U2, Madonna and Prince. It would be nice to see those genres grow in collectibility, albeit that I don’t believe that it will happen in the same way and format as selling 1960s and 1970s collectibles.

Lita Ford (second from left) wearing her famous black cat suit from the early Runaways days (see on display below, left).
GM: Talk about some of the highlights of this year’s Rock Gods and Metal Monsters Auction, and why.

VAN GOOL: This is such a hard question, simply because I think that most of everything that we
Lita Ford's black cat suit.
have in the auction is special, no matter how large or small. There is Lita Ford’s famous black cat suit from the early Runaways days, or a fully-signed bass drumhead from the first ever American show of Venom in New York. Mike Portnoy and Charlie Benante both are offering a complete drum kit – which is a first for both of them, but then we also have a multitude of impressive guitars from various rock stars. You can bid on Marilyn Manson’s tour-used army hat, Tommy Lee’s drum sticks, Stephen Pearcy’s microphone grip or Gene Simmons body armor from the Psycho Circus tour. And speaking of KISS, we have the ‘oldest known to exist’ fully-signed promo photo which is a museum piece all by itself. There are hundreds of backstage passes, guitar picks, autographed items, record awards, tour shirts and jackets…the catalog is not for the faint of heart.

GM: There seems to be a growing amount of ‘gear’ at music memorabilia auctions nowadays. Do you find that collectors are usually musicians themselves when collecting musical gear?

VAN GOOL: No, not really. I mean, sure, a good number will buy amps, cabinets, road cases, microphone stands etc. to actually use and enjoy, but I know that there is an equally large number of people who simply buy gear for display purposes. I have seen people turn road cases into coffee tables, storage bins and even cabinets and book cases. These days an amp or cabinet makes for an equally attractive piece of decorative furniture than for example a birdcage or a fake bamboo plant. And it’s a better conversation piece too!
Lita Ford case, featured in the auction.

GM: You just had a distinct metal auction with Rex Brown of Pantera. Will there be more Pantera memorabilia available from this auction?

VAN GOOL: Yes, there will be a few more pieces. There are about 10 lots from Rex in this auction and another equal number of items coming from other consigners, such as some passes, picks, itineraries, record awards, etc.

GM:  Are the artists usually easy to work with? Do they ever go through separation anxiety after the commitment to auction off personal possessions?

VAN GOOL: I don’t know if ‘easy’ is the right word but I personally have been able to build very good relationship with all our metal consigners. Two things you have to know; metal artists are known to have to do a lot on their own and most had to build their band (and brand) from the ground
Rare Scott Ian (Anthrax) guitars, set to be auctioned. 
up. In other words, for the most part they are self-sufficient and generally knowledgeable about the business side of things. The other element is that metal artists generally have a very strong bond with their fans. They are very comfortable with exposure and don’t hide behind a bodyguard who will whisk them to a blacked-out limo. So, if you can speak their language, understand their drive and history and most importantly, be honest, you’ll end up doing just fine.

GM: What is next for Backstage Auctions after the Rock Gods and Metal Monsters Auction is over?

VAN GOOL: Vacation, R&R, trips to the reflexologist, kicking in a dent in the 100 or so saved shows on my DVR and maybe even a nap or two. After that we are getting ready for a ‘one-of-a-kind’ auction on behalf of a former British photo agency with tens of thousands of negatives from the 1960s and 1970s U.K. Rock & Pop scene, as well as a Classic Rock & Pop auction later in the year. Meanwhile, we’re also looking at a few ‘stand-alone’ auctions for some A-list clients…METAL clients that is!

The Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction is set to go live on June 20th. A special VIP preview will start on June 13th. To get your All Access VIP Auction pass visit the registration section here: VIP Access


CD Review: House Of Lords – Indestructible

CD Review: House Of Lords – Indestructible
Frontiers Music
All Access Rating: B+

House Of Lords - Indestructible 2015
It doesn't take an advanced degree in psychiatry to diagnose the split personalities of House Of Lords.

The latest citadel of progressive pop metal erected by James Christian and friends balances heavy thunder with sweeping melodic grandeur, as the Frontiers Music release Indestructible strives to serve two masters and does so with aplomb, the brawny, rumbling riffs and charging assaults of thrill rides "100mph" and its more atmospheric alternate universe "Die to Tell" dissolving in giant swells of dark, majestic choruses.

Unlike the somewhat generic and uninspired Precious Metal, released in 2014, Indestructible finds its footing instantly, the lyrics proving more thoughtful and deep than before, and blazing rockers like "Go To Hell" and the title track forcefully announcing their presence. As calculated and progressive as Queensryche, with the bittersweet, soaring "Pillar Of Salt" a particularly grandiose composition, House Of Lords can also craft memorable and compelling pop hooks, such as those summoning listeners to "Call My Bluff" and "Another Dawn" like beautiful sirens.

Together for a decade now, the House Of Lords lineup of Christian, guitarist Jimi Bell, bassist Chris McCarvill and drummer B.J. Zampa seems intent on sticking around, the seamless transitions from crushing metal riffs to expansive, spellbinding choruses on Indestructible and ability to design passages connecting them demonstrating they are fully capable of producing power and beauty upon command. This isn't the House Of Lords of Gregg Giuffria or Chuck Wright, but then again, their DNA is similar. Don't write them off yet. Their best days may still be ahead of them, even if they just can't resist tossing in a saccharine ballad like "We Will Always Be One."
– Peter Lindblad

CD Review: Trixter – Human Era

CD Review: Trixter  Human Era
Frontiers Music
All Access Rating: A-

Trixter - Human Era 2015
Don't tell Trixter they're hopelessly stuck in the '80s. To anyone who says time has passed them by, singer/guitarist Peter Loran would like a word.

In the title track to the pop-metal merrymakers' utterly infectious new Frontiers Music release Human Era, Loren, with complete conviction, sings, "Here we are now, not dated/A little torn and not so jaded." That last word should be stricken from Trixter's vocabulary.

Always optimistic and upbeat, with a penchant for making rousing, feel-good rock anthems and a healthy respect for the holy trinity of drums, bass and guitars, the Jersey boys who were big in the late '80s fly high on Human Era, slapping a new coat of sonic paint on an old formula, this bright, energetic follow-up to their 2012 reunion album New Audio Machine coming off as unexpectedly fresh, fun and exciting. Just don't get too caught up in lyrics that are rife with recycled themes and worn-out cliches.

Only the most miserable, joyless bastard on the planet could find fault with the charming and irresistible "Not Like All The Rest" and its engaging hooks, and the brilliant, affecting melodies and galvanizing choruses just gush from "Every Second Counts," "Good Times," and that aforementioned title track. Jon Bon Jovi wishes he had a song like any one of those three still in him, and the rushing excitement and soaring vocal harmonies of "Midnight in Your Eyes" could make Def Leppard question its continued existence. More frenetic and lively, "Crash That Party," "Rocking To The Edge of The Night" and "For You" testify to Trixter's surprisingly youthful vitality, as Loren, lead guitarist Steve Brown, bassist P.J. Farley and drummer Mark "Gus" Scott – whose playing has never been sharper as a unit – usher in the Human Era.
Peter Lindblad 

Picking through 'American Trash' with Jean Beauvoir

Former Crown of Thorns mates team up on new album
By Peter Lindblad

Beauvoir-Free - American Trash 2015
Names tend to get dropped all over the place when discussing the unique and fascinating careers of Jean Beauvoir and Micki Free.

Once upon a time, Free plied his craft in a reconfigured Shalamar, filling in after Jody Watley and Jeffrey Daniel left the glittery disco-driven soul/R&B outfit.

With Shalamar, Free earned three Grammy nominations, helping make "Dancing in the Sheets," from the Footloose soundtrack, a Top 20 hit in 1984 and actually nabbing a Grammy for 1985's "Don't Get Stopped in Beverly Hills," included in Beverly Hills Cop. Free and his striking looks later gained more recent fame when he was, at least in part, the subject of a famed "Dave Chapelle Show" sketch, with none other than Eddie Murphy's brother, Charlie Murphy, making mention of photogenic features.

And then there's Beauvoir, a former member of scandalous New York City punk provocateurs The Plasmatics – famed for their destructive, and often lewd, behavior and the shocking theatrics of Wendy O. Williams – and later a part of Steven Van Zandt's Disciples of Soul, before his song "Feel The Heat" caught the ear of Sylvester Stallone, was featured in the movie "Cobra" and became a Billboard Hot 100 hit.

Jean Beauvoir and
Micki Free
All that doesn't even begin to scratch the surface with these two, who've individually collaborated over the years with the likes of The Ramones, KISS, Debbie Harry, Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top, Carlos Santana, The Pretenders, Lionel Richie, Queen's Roger Taylor, former Yes guitarist Trevor Rabin and the list goes on and on and on. Not to mention that Beauvoir once served as musical director for Gary U.S. Bonds and sang lead with doo-wop legends The Flamingos.

Behind the scenes, both Beauvoir and Free have grown into powerful entertainment executives – Beauvoir having partnered with such industry heavyweights as Richard Branson, Ted Fields and Jimmy Iovine, and the aforementioned Little Steven of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, "The Sopranos" and "Little Stevens Underground" fame, among others, and Free, proud of his Native American heritage and making more gritty, bluesy rock concoctions these days, working with Hard Rock International and the Seminole Tribe of Florida.

Their paths crossed again in the early '90s when Beauvoir – conspicuous by his flowing blonde Mohawk hairstyle – and Free founded the melodic hard-rock combo Crown of Thorns, a much-beloved group that gained popularity throughout the world.

In 2003, they reconnected, both of them having moved back to Los Angeles. Reviving their partnership, they set about writing and recording a new album titled American Trash under the Beauvoir-Free moniker that's just about to be released via Frontiers Records. Big, soaring choruses that make your heart burst, powerful hooks, strong vocals and thick, tasty riffs are the stuff American Trash is made of, and it features some of the best songwriting they've ever done together or apart.

Beauvoir talked recently with the All Access blog about the new record, his creative partnership and friendship with Free and his incredibly diverse career. 

The new album is fantastic. Explain how you and Micki reconnected and decided to record together again. And what do you remember about meeting for the first time?
Jean Beauvoir: Thanks!!! After the split following the debut, we reconnected some years later finding ourselves living in the same neighborhood in LA. We started hanging out together and talked about recording or playing together again. We did a couple of gigs in the UK, Hard Rock Calling main stage with Springsteen, Aerosmith etc. It was fun! I mentioned to Frontiers that we were thinking about doing a new album, they were into it and so we made a deal.

I actually met Micki back in the '80s when he was with Shalamar. We'd run into each other hanging out at clubs in Paris, N.Y. and L.A. We each thought, "Yeah, that is cool! We should do something together someday."

Why do you think you and Micki work so well together? And how have you grown as songwriters?
JB: We have similar ways of thinking and we just have fun doing it. We take a real casual approach. We sit at my house with a couple of guitars, like we did at the beginning and it just flows. He'll play a riff, I immediately hear a melody and it turns into a song. I think the growing comes with the more you do it, the better you get.

As with Crown of Thorns, there’s a wonderful blend of meaty guitar riffs and melody. How did the making of this album hearken back to the days of Crown of Thorns for you and how did it differ? 
JB: That's always how I see things, good riffs and good melodies. That's the recipe in my eyes. From the first Crown Of Thorns record, to the other albums I did after Micki and to anything we do together or separately. We like good music, melodies and songs that move you, make you feel. So we try to make that happen whenever writing.

Where does the title American Trash come from?
JB: It has two meanings on this album. Not in a negative way, but we were hanging out together and the name came up. We feel in some ways we're outcasts – I from the Plasmatics, Micki always being a rebel and we both always kind of go against the grain. Also, in the song, it's an imaginary strip club. I was in Key West and went to see a cool rock and roll DJ named Rocko; he's a big rock fan and he told me, "Jean we need some great rock tracks for me and my DJ friends to play in the strip clubs across America!" It kind of inspired me and made us think of how those clubs and the girls have always been sisters to rockers and have been supporting rockers while they were trying to make it. We decided to write a song that would pay homage to them.

“Shotgun to the Heart” has great hooks and guitars that just sound mean. Tell me about how that song came together and what you like about it?
JB: It started with a cool riff from Micki for the verse and I just heard melodies right away. Usually from there, I hear a chorus that would complement musically and we add that in. From there, the lyrics just come from the vibe we feel. It just felt like "Shotgun to the Heart." I usually lay down a guide vocal that has certain sounds or syllables that come naturally. Then the lyrics come – "Shotgun To The Heart" was just right!

Two of my favorites are the title track and “Cold Dark December,” both of which have really funky grooves but I also really like the vocal treatments for both, even though they’re pretty different. How crucial are these elements to the Beauvoir-Free sound, and how much time did you spend on them in creating these two tracks in particular?
JB: Very cool! Our backgrounds have back beat and groove – where we come from, other styles of music we've played, so this comes naturally. I think that is part of our sound. We actually don't spend much time to get the initial song; that usually comes in 10-30 minutes to be honest, basic structure and melodies. Then the final production that I do and getting everything right takes two to three days for each song including vocals, backgrounds, getting the lyrics right etc.

Do you enjoy recording songs like the title track and “Whiplash,” which are heavier rockers, as opposed to a soaring ballad like “Just Breathe”? 
JB: I enjoy it all! I think it's great to have an album with balance and that takes you on a journey. Different subjects, an overview of life as we see it, personal or mirroring what we see happening around us. I always think that way when making albums.

Why did it make sense to position “Angels Cry” as the album opener? That song in particular seems to represent what the Beauvoir-Free sound is all about to me.
JB: It was not carefully thought out. I guess we felt the same that "Angels Cry" was the most representative and should open. It just came from a feeling.

“Never Give Up” seems like a very personal song. There must be a story behind that one. Talk about coming up with the lyrics for that one.
JB: Good call, that was very personal and I really feel those lyrics. It was late at night and the lyrics just came to me. It addresses everyday struggles and believing in yourself. Contrary to what many may feel, we all go through our ups and downs. I truly believe you have to work through them even if you hit bottom at times. I think this rings true for lots of people and a song like this is meant to inspire and make listeners feel that they're not alone in feeling this way. Never give up.

When the two of you get together to write and record, do you find you agree on most things or is there a creative tension, like it’s always been for a lot of the greats, that leads to great results?
JB: Actually, there's no tension. It really flows. There's a mutual respect and we both admire and are excited of each other's contributions. When Micki plays something, I always like it and immediately dig it and hear where it should go. When I finish a track and send it off to Micki, he always texts me back with excitement and positivity!

Jean Beauvoir and his trademark
blonde mohawk
Your musical history is absolutely fascinating. How did you go from being musical director of Gary U.S. Bonds to singing with The Flamingos and then becoming part of the NYC punk scene and joining The Plasmatics?
JB: Hell knows! Thank you!!! I know, pretty wide... Gary and the Flamingos came to me early in. It was great musical training and made me adaptable to all situations – serious school as a kid. Then I discovered punk, which due to my rebellious personality and desire to be groundbreaking and unique, it fit right in. I loved the rawness, power, anger and effect it had. The fans were amazing! Even with Gary, I would play my original songs between his sets and they would always rock. He really liked it and supported me. The Flamingos was great vocal training singing with one of the best vocal groups of all times. I learned a lot about harmony, vocal structures etc. – didn't get to use it much with the Plasmatics, but really came in handy later on in my career.

I remember living in a small town in northern Wisconsin and seeing the Plasmatics on TV, and just being completely blown away by what I was witnessing. How did you like the attention you were getting, and were the stage antics planned out or were they made up on the spur of the moment?
JB: I loved the attention. We couldn’t walk down the street without being mobbed. It was pretty exciting. All the TV exposure and press really made the band recognizable around the world. A lot was planned out. We rehearsed the show quite a bit – Actually more than I have ever rehearsed! It was like a day job! Eight hours or so everyday that we weren’t on tour.

How did you come to join up with Little Steven and in what ways has he impacted your career?
JB: After leaving the Plasmatics, I wanted a solo deal as an artist/singer. Actually I wanted to make my record my way playing everything. Every label turned me down and basically said, if I want to continue along the lines of the Plasmatics, they’d be into it, but musical singing etc. was not an option. I met Steven through my manager from Gary U.S. Bonds. Turns out he had organized the Gary U.S. Bonds [collaboration] with Bruce Springsteen and Steven producing. He thought we’d get along and suggested that they rehearse for Gary’s album in my N.Y. loft rehearsal space. Steven and I met and Steven loved what I was doing as an artist. I was really against playing in someone’s band at that point. I had offers from Prince, Billy Idol and so on, but I really wanted to be solo. Steven convinced me to join his band, the Disciples of Soul. He felt that doing that would give me the credibility that I needed, since Springsteen and The Plasmatics couldn’t be further opposites. He was right and was very helpful to me moving into my solo career.

How much did it mean to you to have Sylvester Stallone choose “Feel the Heat” for the movie “Cobra” and did it change the career path you were on in any way?
JB: It meant a lot! After leaving Steven, I met a manager Gary Kurfirst right before totally giving up. He told me he’d have me a deal within weeks. I went to Sweden where I had received a singles deal offer from ABBA’s company. He told me not to sign and then called me to say Richard Branson loved my demos and was offering me a deal, actually our own label imprint! I flew to London to meet Sir Richard Branson and sign. Shortly thereafter, Al Teller from Columbia offered me as well! Exciting times!!! Right before the release, Gary received a call from Stallone saying that he heard my song while editing his film in L.A. and wanted my song for the biggest film campaign in the history of film to date – “COBRA.” I was freaking and I can still remember going to Times Square, hearing my song loud as the trailer for the film. It was used in every commercial in the world and was amazing. The song became a big hit around the world because of this! Besides, I’m a big Stallone fan, so it was so very cool!

You’ve written with so many big names in the music industry, from KISS to the Ramones to Deborah Harry and Lionel Richie and The Pretenders. That really speaks to your versatility as a writer. Who were your favorite people to write with and what experience sticks out in your memory as being particularly special?
JB: I hate to sound diplomatic, but I loved it all. They are all so different, but masters of their own worlds. To be asked to contribute to greatness is incredibly fulfilling. Also, Nona Hendryx, N’SYNC, Doro Pesch. I had the opportunity to taste all genres and they were each the best at what they did. As time goes on, they’ve all become even more important and recognized – really glad to be a part of that!

Your entrepreneurial work is just as impressive as your musical exploits. Do you find the business side of your career just as gratifying as the creative side, and who has been especially inspirational in this aspect of your life?
JB: I don’t know if it’s as gratifying, but at times necessary – even though I do enjoy doing business that makes a difference, helping artists, breaking new ground like being involved in Lilyhammer that brought Norwegian talent to the US, [and] other TV shows that I’ve done which gave exposure to talent. I’m involved in a children’s TV show, books and film called “City Of Friends,” which is really great – incorporates music as well. I like doing new things, breaking new ground. That is fulfilling to me. People who have done that or do that are inspiring to me.

Given your history, your perspective on the current state of the music industry would be invaluable. Gene Simmons has talked about how “rock is dead” and how young rock artists simply don’t have a chance today. Do you agree or is there hope for a younger generation of rock musicians to experience the same success you have?
JB: I agree, they don’t have a chance. Only kidding!!! I think it’s different, definitely not as easy in some ways to get heard, but much easier in other ways. Back in the day, you had to be one of the chosen few by a major label to even have a chance of success. Now, bands can get their own fans, make their own music at home without the need of a big budget – do their own videos with an iPhone. The problem is, everyone can do it and there’s a lot of talent out there, so its really hard to shine amongst the millions all trying the same thing. So a young band still needs to differentiate somehow, so that the cream rises to the top. The other difference is that they have to do it themselves, without the same support as before.

Jean Beauvoir and Micki
Free reconnected when
both moved back to L.A. in 2003
Going back to American Trash, was there a point in the making of it where you felt that the old magic between you two had returned or was it always there from the beginning on work on it?
JB: Yeah, right away, we have a magic when we work together. It’s always there.

What would you like to listeners to come away with after listening to American Trash?
JB: Enjoy it, love it, take away the messages 'cause they’re for you. Use it to live your life.

Lastly, the blond Mohawk is such a distinctive look. How did you come up with it and do you think it’ll always be something that’s a part of your style?
JB: It’s been a part of me so long, that I actually never feel like myself without it. It came when I joined The Plasmatics. I had a white stripe before that, like a skunk! I shaved off the sides when I joined the band

It was natural to me and the blond hair at the time represented racelessness. I felt that you should be who you wanted to be, do what you wanna do ... self expression. I had lots of problems from people back then; they felt I was going against my roots. I’m glad to see that now all that thinking has changed – was nice to see the great Sly Stone sporting my blond Mohawk look at the Grammys and even happier to see that the press wrote the he was channeling Jean Beauvoir from The Plasmatics!

Decades of Music Memorabilia Takes Center Stage in the 2015 Rock Gods and Metal Monsters Auction

This year’s Rock Gods & Metal Monsters Auction is going to be one of “the” auction events of the year and if you haven’t signed up for your All Access Auction Pass you will definitely want to do so after reading about the artists and type of items featured in the auction.

We have an impressive group of notable hard rock and heavy metal artists who have cleaned out their storage lockers and personally selected each item that will be featured in the auction. 
The headliners include; Alex Skolnick (Testament), Paul Bostaph (Slayer), Dave Mustaine and David Ellefson (Megadeth), Mike Portnoy (Dream Theater), Stephen Pearcy (Ratt), Scott Ian, Charlie Benante and Frank Bello (Antrax), Rex Brown (Pantera) and Lita Ford (Runaways).

Additionally, the auction will showcase memorabilia featuring AC/DC, Aerosmith, Black Sabbath, The Cult, Cheap Trick, Def Leppard, Guns N' Roses, Judas Priest, Kiss, Linkin Park, Marilyn Manson, Metallica, Motley Crue, Motorhead / Hawkwind, Ozzy, Poison, Slipknot, Van Halen Rob Zombie and loads more!

Whether you collect guitars, amps, pedals, gear, drums, record awards, stage worn attire, picks & sticks, signed memorabilia or vintage crew and tour t-shirts & jackets, tickets & passes, itineraries, photos, posters, promotional items – there is something for everyone’s taste and budget.

Of course we have a few special highlights including; an amazing collection of artist owned and used guitars, drum kits and gear, impressive array of rare and unique artist signed items, an absolute stunning collection of original RIAA Record Awards and a vast selection of tour memorabilia including itineraries, passes and apparel.

The auction will be live from June 20th – 28th with a special VIP Preview that starts June 13th. If you are not registered for your All Access Auction Pass, rock on over and sign up today – it takes just a minute and there is no fee to sign up. Link: All Access Registration

Follow Backstage Auctions on Twitter and Facebook for auction highlights before, during and after the event. 


BACKSTAGE AUCTIONS - A boutique online auction house specializing in authentic rock memorabilia and exclusively represents legendary musicians, entertainment professionals and entities. Every auction event is unique, reflecting the artist's legacy and chronicles their legendary career.