Cincinnati promoter Kenny Ozz threw his 2015 birthday party at MVP’s inviting half the city, nearby regions and parts unknown to attend. Bands, music fans, metal heads and a band from the Sunset Strip that lived to tell the tales were in the house.
Doors opened at 4pm for the near all day show starting with The New machine at 4:30 going nonstop till 2am with Lazy Ass Destroyer finishing the 14 band showcase. The event didn’t disappoint as bands from all over Southern Ohio came along with some friends from New York. Special guest, local hero “Big John” from VH1’s Rock of Love served as guest host and emcee for the evening.
The New Machine rose from the ashes of Illustria under the vision of Ray McLaine Bounds. Their set opened with a tribute to Scott Weiland performing “Plush”. They played a trio of originals “The Master,” “Save Your Mother,” and the “Man Made Judgement Day.”
The first beauty of the many beasts came on stage early as Lying in Ruins led by the dressed for the occasion Amy Newhart started the days sophomore set. Opening with “Let it Go,” vocals vibrated windows on “Glass House” tickling the throat like whisky making the whole body feel good. They broke out the venomous “Poison” with the opening slinking guitar notes creeping through the speakers. Bringing a modern heavy grunge sound, they’ve passed the decade mark, an accomplishment for any active band. Next up was her favorite head banging song as she swung hard, whiplashing the air on “Smoke.” Her silver tonged shriek cut through the speakers reaching for the heart and jugular as guitars dug deep on raunchy, dirty notes as “Break Me” unfortunately ended their set.
Time for Shocker a band birthed by Danni Curr and Fast Eddie. In 2010 they returned from hiatus and will release new music next year. Mixing a strong cocktail of Kiss, 80s metal and a love for death, sex and strong spirits, “Kill for the Thrill” opened with Iron Maiden unleashed on “Man Made Armageddon.” The booze flowed early and all night “Drinkin Till the Break of Dawn.” “Sexecutioner” was dedicated to all the ladies in the house as was “The Ride to Rock N Roll.”
Straight outta Cincinnati came, Sinful Crow. Blues’d up, booze heavy and ready to hell blaze with the best of southern grunge. They started with a page from good ole Charlie, because a “Long Hair Country Boy” don’t need much at all.
“Straight Jacket” wrapped tight and uncomfortably close with guitars screaming out the sanity with Johnny “5” Campbell blasting out the BLS/Phil Anselmo pipes with a ‘bit’ of Vedder leather lacquered vocals. They brought out the incarcerated angry tendencies on “Folsom Prison Blues” and made Seven Mary Three even grittier and guttural on “My My.” With a little bit of Elvis “Diablo” turned up the evil in those eyes, black as midnight. The Man in Black got punked by Social Distortion with the “Ring of Fire.” They ended, taking a bow to the Lizard King and the “Roadhouse Blues.”
Red Soul Rising opened with a “Slither” giving their respect stamp to Weiland. Self-described as sexy, greasy ‘powerslop with an edge,’ they cover the classics and Freebird if group requested. They made the lord of darkness pay up early on “Devil its Due.” Bon Scott got a shout out from “Rosie” and “All the Lies” finished up with a sneered “Rebel Yell.”
Kill City mixed it up with straight shots of punk, rock, glam and some Motorhead snarl with GNR street stories and an Iggy Pop delivery, minus the peanut butter. “Downtown” was back alley fun and games. It’s, do what you gotta do for it, when you’ve got hard luck “Dying for Love.” Joe Pesci’s cracking some f‘n skulls on “Gimme Blood.” They’re out of booze and the rents due, heading down the road to a straight jacket “American Blackout,” hanging out with desperate dirty women just “Make things Worse.” They ended with that ever addicting “Thin White Line.”
The Letdowns started with a boom “Whisky Drunk and Hell Bent on Love.” The result melding of Total Dudes and Chiva Knievel brought you country flavored, guzzled punk and old fashioned R&R. Johnny Outlaw came back up for some INXS action and No Doubt got some love on “Spiderwebs.”
Bringing back 80s glam was V-Twin Sin lead by the overly colorful, flamboyant Rikki Glam. An unusual but fun to look at merging of Kevin DuBrow, Jimmy Page and Tiny Tim. With the twin guitar attack (literally) of the Symes brothers, they’re a band with a sense of humor and serious about it. Self-described as the byproduct of Black Sabbath violating Motley Crue, they played meaty metal about women’s favorite male appendage. It was 80s sexism with a wink and an invite starting with “Dick in my Hand.” “Up & Down” was about everyone’s favorite position, partnered or solo. “Jack Fever” was a tender, loving, fatherly ballad, while “Dick Riders” was dedicated to the ladies and all that they do for the guys. They ended with a crunch and potential scream with “Nuts to Bite.”
The lovely ladies and the guys of Chakras went on sporting the hypnotic enchantment of vocalists Andrea, Cellist Patrice and bassist Mary Beth. What could be considered the voices of an alternative rock ABBA started with the chant-like opening to “Split Lip,” in vein of Crucified Barbara and Drain STH. We got real comfortable with the hard crunching “Itch.” “Never Said” slowed down veering into tranquil emotional waters.
Grungy and adventurous with a bagpipe guitar affect “Julia” and her ravenous bloodthirsty addictions drew the crowd in to feast. “Earthquakes Everywhere” twanged and slinked around like a prowling huntress. “999” flirted with a sinister eye. “Swagger” calmed down with intriguing melody and messages of inner strength through adversity and turmoil. Some fast aggressive angry guitar, drums and vocal attitude finished up “Cherish to Perish.”
Tuff was glam metal from the 80s when MTV was cool and Headbangers Ball ruled. For an hour Stevie Rachelle and the boys took MVP’s back to the bright lights of arena rock, when the hair was more explosive than the pyro, proving that “Good Guys Wear Black.”
Back in the Dial MTV days Tuff waged war with Guns n Roses and Metallica for chart supremacy with “I Hate Kissing You Goodbye.” Though in Rachelle’s words “one of these things is not like the other” as they went into a Knockin on Heaven’s Door style jam-segue. We all got our Religious Fix on “God Bless This Mess” and “In Dogs We Trust.”
They could have been the “All New Generation” before grunge came in and destroyed the world. The time came to end their show, sad but true. They left, shouting it out to the glam/LA era as there will always be an “American Hair Band” out there somewhere.
Like the 80s wasn’t drunk enough, Hamilton’s Rhythm and Booze came on next specializing in ‘drunk-rock.’
After a down home rumblin’ introduction the “Devil Went Down to Georgia.” “No Beer on Sunday” for the respectable God fearing penitent man. “Common Ground” had a southern punk feel, finding neutrality between genres. Tonight was gonna be a boozing, drunken good ole time come “Hell or High Water.” The slogan of many generations of road burned/scarred rock stars and dead icons “Wasted Again” finished their evening’s road to excess.
Pagan Holiday making the trip from Carthage, NY opened with new tunes “He Who Walks behind the Rows.” Stephen King fans they may be. “When Shadows Fall” breathed new life on stage. Fun songs about horror movies, angels and dead stuff sang with clean passionate vocals and growled demonic rumbles. “Hair Ties and Razorblades,” was a unique combination with painful results by an inexperienced handler. Grim Reapers Head Bangers Ball anthem “See You in Hell” (my friends) sent them back on the road.
Red Beast accompanied by the big scarlet evil guy himself played with a late night brutal political sweetness. First up a heavy word from the “Jewhad” that terrorism never wins. “Hell Know” said you’re headed to fire and damnation anyway so pick a cause to support and an enemy to hate. The anti-government-corporate protest theme “Kill the Man” raised fists and beers. The sweet and sticky “Killing Spree Sweet Tart” ended the set with a chewable message of non-violence but not quite passive resistance.
Closing the show in true bizarro land fashion Lazy Ass Destroyer started on “Troubled Man” opening the hybrid genre benders set with the first song of rhymes delivered like a speed metal solo. “Such A Sin” got jangly with homeboy attitude and some Beastie guitar attitude. The ladies sang the tune. Straight up metal it wasn’t, a mixed hybrid of rap/metal with the most uniquely unusual freakish visual delivery this side of Ohio/KY… it was. After a day of singing, growling and screaming Ozzfest 8 ended with motor mouth styled rhymes. The killer bees had a loud attitude and a vicious sting flying in to represent the non-beastly winged creatures of the metal soaked evening. “Whatcha Wanna” went into Eminem territory with Kid Rock guitars. “Fuck It” ended the evening and the 14 band marathon.
Images by Mike Ritchie
excluding The New Machine and Lying in Ruins.