Twister Sister’s New Rock Doc Is One Of 2016’s Top New Music Documentaries

Courtesy:  Music Box Films

Courtesy: Music Box Films

Twisted Sister is one of the most famous and infamous acts in the rock community’s modern history.  Over the course of its roughly four decades-plus the band, originally known as Silver Star, has faced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows.  Through it all it has remained a favorite among audiences of all ages in the rock community.  But in 2015 the band made it official that it was calling it a career following the death of drummer A.J. Pero.  However, front man Dee Snider noted that the band wasn’t just going to let itself fade into obscurity.  A tour was planned along with tribute shows to Pero.  And this past February the band released a new documentary titled We Are Twisted F***ing Sister! that examines the band’s roots.  This presentation, which clocks in at a little more than two hours in length, is a good addition to the personal music collection of any Twisted Sister fan.  It shows this primarily through its central story.  It is a story of a band that was so much more than the personas presented on stage.  It is the most important part of the program’s presentation.  This will be discussed at greater length shortly.  Just as important as the story at the heart of the documentary is the footage that accompanies said story.  The footage in question is rare material presenting the band in its formative years.  There are also interviews with [Dee] Snider and guitarist/founding member Jay Jay French as well as some of the band’s fans.  Last but hardly least of note in this documentary is its bonus material.  Each element plays its own important part in the overall presentation of We Are Twisted F***ing Sister.  Altogether they make this presentation one every member of the rock realm should see regardless of whether or not they are Twisted Sister fans.

Twisted Sister’s new documentary We Are twisted F***ing Sister! is one of the most intriguing rock docs to be released so far this year.  That is actually saying something considering how cookie cutter so many other music documentaries come across as being.  They are little more than snippets of artists/acts’ tours spliced in with some behind the scenes footage and thrown together for the sake of contractual obligations.  This documentary is anything but one of those run-of-the-mill presentations.  It presents Twisted Sister—in its central story–not as the over-the-top glam rock band that most audiences have come to know but rather a blue-collar working class band that just happened to use glam as its bit in order to gain its audiences.  Beneath the surface of that façade was a group of musicians that worked its way to its stardom.  And it did it the hard way, too.  This is exemplified at one point when Snider reveals that the band was essentially scammed in order to play a venue.  The band was never paid for the gig in question.  And it faced even more troubles from there.  It’s just one of the problems that the band faced on its journey.  At one point early on Snider also reveals that the band’s original bassist left the band as a result of personal beliefs and a battle with alcoholism.  Snider’s reaction as he recollects said musician’s explanation for his departure is just as interesting.  Just as interesting are Snider’s own humble admissions about being the new guy in the band when he was brought on board and Jay Jay French’s hindsight about the band hanging Barry White in effigy as part of its act.  The hanging was part of the ban’s ardent protest against disco.  French admits in hindsight that what the band did really was not a good thing especially after sharing an anecdote about a bar owner’s reaction after the band conducted its act in New York.  Viewers can tell that French was wholly embarrassed by this act and obviously changed things up after that incident.  There are plenty of other stories shared throughout the course of the documentary’s two hour-plus run time including a story about Snider’s wife developing the band’s outfits for which the band became famous, the band’s plan in regards to replacing members, and so much more.  Regardless of which story/stories viewers choose, they will agree that all things considered the central story of Twisted Sister’s early, blue-collar days puts the band in a wholly different light than that in which it has been seen for so many decades.  Along the way, audiences will find that the pacing plays its own role in the program’s presentation, too.  It moves at a speed that is just enough that along with the central story shows even more why this documentary’s central story is so important to the overall presentation of We Are Twisted F***ing Sister!  It is only one of the documentary’s important elements, too.  The interviews noted previously within the documentary tie in with the program’s vintage footage of the band’s early live shows to make both elements as collectively important as the band’s story.

The central story presented in We Are Twisted F***ing Sister! is in itself a hugely important element of rock doc’s presentation.  It is just one of the program’s most important elements.  The collective interviews and concert footage that are used to help tell the band’s story are just as important to the presentation as the story itself.  The interviews include interviews, as already noted, with founding member Jay Jay French and front man Dee Snider.  Mark Mendoza and Eddie Ojeda both get their own screen time, too as do some of the band’s fans.  The collective stories that are shared by all involved paint a picture of a band that is more a blue-collar, working class band than the over-the-top glam act that audiences have come to know.  The vintage footage of the band’s early days serves to enrich that picture even more.  Audiences get to see in that footage, the band on stage in its infancy playing club to club, and eventually making its way to arenas.  Viewers will enjoy watching the band evolve from its early incarnation, dressing in drag to its flashier outfits and learning about the change in its identity from just another cover band to an act with its own hugely popular songs.  The evolution presented in the vintage concert footage and interviews establish a solid foundation for the documentary’s story.  The end result is a story that once again proves to be one of the year’s best music documentaries.  Even in forming such a solid foundation for its story, the vintage footage and interviews incorporated into are just one more part of what makes this documentary stand out.  The bonus materials included with the story round out the program’s presentation.

The story at the center of We Are Twisted F***ing Sister! and the content that forms the story’s foundation are both of equal importance to the documentary’s presentation.  That is because together they insure audiences, regardless of whether or not they are Twisted Sister fans, will remain wholly engaged in the presentation.  As important as they are to the presentation they are not the documentary’s only important elements.  The bonus material included with the program is just as important to its whole as anything else.  The bonus material in question is made up largely of interviews with the band.  The interviews in question were both extended takes on the interviews presented in the program and short vignettes that didn’t make the final cut.  They range from the funny to the rather serious.  One of the more interesting stories shared in the bonus interviews features French discussing a very lethal threat that he ha received in regards to one of the band’s singles.  It is like something out of a gangster flick just as he himself notes.  There are also interesting stories about Hanoi Rocks’ view of Twisted Sister and Anvil basically owning Twisted Sister in the bands’ first time out together in another pair of interviews.  Between these short stories and so many others included in the bonus features there is a lot to appreciate and to enjoy.  The whole thing is rounded out with Snider recalling one person’s reason for seeing the band allegedly forty-five times and his own thoughts on the band’s breakup.  What he has to say in both cases is the perfect closure to We Are Twisted F***ing Sister!.  It serves to beautifully sum up everything that made audiences love Twisted Sister then and why a whole new generation loves the band now even though the band has called it a career.  Between those thoughts and everything else presented in the program’ bonus interviews, the whole of those interviews shows clearly why they are indeed bonuses.  Together with the documentary’s story and its overall content, all three elements come together to once more make We Are Twisted F***ing Sister! one of this year’s best new music documentaries.

We Are Twisted F***ing Sister! is one of 2016’s best new music documentaries hands down.  This is made clear through the program’s central story.  The story dispels the view of Twisted Sister as just some over-the-top glitter/glam rock band.  Rather it paints the picture of a blue-collar, working class band that earned every single bit of its fame.  That includes the fame that it holds to this day.  The interviews and vintage concert footage that is used to help tell the story adds even more to the experience.  It shows how hard Twisted Sister worked and how hungry the band was to make it; not for the fame necessarily but because it was in the band’s blood.  The bonus interview segments that accompany the documentary’s central story round out its presentation.  Through these interviews, audiences get a fuller picture of the band and its fans.  Viewers get to hear extended portions of the interviews presented in the program’s main story as well as interviews that ended up on the cutting room floor.  Those interviews add a whole extra layer to the band’s story, thus making the story that much more interesting for any rock purist regardless of whether said purist is a Twisted Sister fan or not.  Hearing those interviews—those stories—and hearing the fire in the band’s performances, even those that are not fans have to admit that there was something special about Twisted Sister.  Knowing this, it makes the story in whole that much more important to the band and its fans.  It makes the story that much more important to the overall history of rock.  Keeping that in mind it is safe to say, once more, that We Are Twisted F***ing Sister! is one of 2016’s top new music documentaries if not the year’s best and a fitting eulogy for one of rock’s great acts should Twisted Sister indeed be done for good.  It is available now in stores on DVD and Blu-ray.  More information on this and other titles from Music Box Films is available online now at:








More information on We Are Twisted F***ing Sister! is available online now along with all of the latest Twisted Sister news is available online now at:







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Alpha Tiger Leading The Pack Early With Its Latest Full-Length LP

Courtesy:  Steamhammer/SPV

Courtesy: Steamhammer/SPV

2014 was a great year for the worlds of rock and metal acts. Major names the likes of Exodus, Machine Head, Judas Priest, and Black Label Society all released new albums alongside a number of equally impressive up-and-coming bands the likes of The Amsterdam Red Light District, Zodiac, Royal Blood, and others. Now with 2015 not even a full month old, this still very young year is already looking just as good for the metal masses the world over. One sign of this is the upcoming new release from Germany’s own Alpha Tiger. Alpha Tiger will release its new album iDentity in the United States next Tuesday, January 20th. The album, the band’s third is a solid follow-up to the band’s 2011 debut Man or Machine and its followup, Beneath The Surface. The band wastes no time re-introducing itself to audiences on its new album. The band launches into things right off the top in the full throttle, socially conscious ‘Lady Liberty.’ The song is a commentary of sorts on the current state of things in America. On the other end of the spectrum, the band offers an uplifting piece in the positively-charged ‘Closer Than Yesterday.’ The album’s lead single ‘We Won’t Take It Anymore’ is just as powerful a song with its driving guitar riffs and powerhouse vocals from front man Stephan Dietrich. It is another very socially conscious piece that is sure to become a fan favorite if it isn’t already. It, along with the other noted songs are just one part of the whole that makes iDentity a great start to 2015 for the metal masses. The other tracks not noted here each play their own part in iDentity’s enjoyment. Together with the compositions noted here, all ten tracks that make up Alpha Tiger’s new album prove it to be a solid new album and a good start to 2015 for the metal masses.

Alpha Tiger’s upcoming new album iDentity is the band’s third full-length record in four years. Usually when an act releases so many albums in such a short amount of time, it can prove to be a bad thing. It can prove to be bad because in many cases there is a noticeable decline in the quality of said acts’ material. Said albums feel rushed for lack of better wording. In other cases, putting out albums so quickly also means that audiences can actually grow weary of said acts. This applies both to the bigger names in the music world and even to those signed to independent labels. In the case of iDentity, Alpha Tiger hasn’t suffered from any of those issues. The band impresses right off the top in its socially-charged opener ‘Lady Liberty.’ The very first thing that audiences will note in this song is the obvious influences from the likes of Iron Maiden and Judas Priest on its musical side. The dual guitar attack of Peter Langforth and Alexander Backasch coupled with drummer David Schleif’s solid timekeeping and [Stephan] Dietrich’s vocal talents will easily fool audiences. Anyone hearing this song and not knowing it was Alpha Tiger would instantly think they were hearing either of the aforementioned greats. Lyrically speaking, it is just as much a solid opener with it’s seeming commentary on the current state of America. The seeming message in question comes across as Dietrich sings with obvious sarcasm in his voice, “Come on over hear the news/the day has come/Now we are free to choose/I Choose the path that’s best for me/Thank God to live the American dream.” The message is made even clearer later in the song as Dietrich sings, “I’m free to shoot a stranger down/I claim my right, He trod my ground/I’ll raise the flag of liberty/The lady on her hill will shine down on me.” It is only this critic’s own interpretation, but the line “I’m free to shoot a stranger down/I claim my right, He trod my ground” seems to make reference to the Treyvon Martin case and others like it. Regardless of the intended reference, such lyrics make for quite the indictment of a nation in whole. And they are sure to make quite the discussion. That discussion itself makes ‘Lady Liberty’ the perfect choice to open iDentity. The song’s musical backing makes even clearer why this song was chosen to open the album.

‘Lady Liberty’ was the perfect choice to open Alpha Tiger’s latest full-length release. It instantly grabs listeners by the ear with its fire and energy and refuses to let go. It boasts a lot of fire and energy both musically and lyrically. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Alpha Tiger offers a different kind of fire and energy in the uplifting Closer Than Yesterday.’ This song is the polar opposite of ‘Lady Liberty.’ But it is no less powerful. This song offers a welcome ray of hope to anyone going through a rough time both musically and lyrically. The song opens with a solid, driving piano riff that eventually builds into a full on arena-style song, musically speaking complete with huge guitar lick. One could almost argue something of a Bon Jovi influence to this song when one really sits down and listens to it for its musical side. That’s not an entirely bad thing, either. Now are the song’s equally uplifting lyrics. Dietrich sings in this song, “So don’t say you try/Just say you will/There is enough you left behind/It’s time to live!” The control in his voice as he sings these lyrics is something special. That control and gentility in his voice as he sings is like getting a musical pat on the back, reminding listeners that as tough as life gets, everything will be okay. He even goes so far as to sing, “I will step into the great unknown/Where dreams are made to become real/Yes I know it’s still a long way to go/But I’m closer than yesterday.” He comes across as saying that we must embrace the uncertainties in life without fear. We must embrace it because with each step forward we are “closer than yesterday” to defeating those uncertainties that cloud our minds. It is quite the positive reminder to audiences of all ages. That it can reach audiences of so many ages makes it even more powerful and in turn one more way in which iDentity works so well.

Both ‘Lady Liberty’ and ‘Closer Than Yesterday’ show why iDentity is a solid new effort from Aplha Tiger. Both songs are key examples of what makes the album so enjoyable because of the power both in their music and lyrics. The album’s lead single ‘We Won’t Take It Anymore’ boasts much the same energy and fire in its music and lyrics, too. And as with those songs, it too exhibits an obvious influence from the great veteran metal acts that have come before in its examining its musical side. Looking at the song from a lyrical vantage point, there is just as much fire as Dietrich sings “You call us hopeless generation/’Cause we won’t play by your rules/Or it’s because you can’t control us/Like your money hungry fools.” The pure defiant and infectious energy exuded by the band here will have the song resonating in listeners’ heads long after the song has ended. This is proven even more as Dietrich sings, “We won’t take it/Take it anymore/’Cause we are sick of it all/We won’t take it/Take it anymore/We’ve had it up to here.” It’s one more strong statement from Alpha Tiger that is sure to have listeners singing along proudly, pumping their fists in the air. If such striking lyrics and powerful music haven’t already made this single a hit among the band’s European fans, it won’t be long before it is. And when iDentity is released in the U.S., audiences will agree with that sentiment. They will agree with the sentiment regarding not only this song but the others mentioned here and those not noted. In hearing all of the songs that make up iDentity American audiences will discover what the band’s European fans already know–Alpha Tiger is one of the leaders of the rock world’s pack this year.

iDentity is scheduled to be released in the United States next Tuesday, January 20th. It has already been released overseas. And the band is currently on tour in Europe in support of its new album. Audiences around the world can find out the band’s latest tour updates and news online now at:



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Rocklahoma Organizers Announce New Ticket Package

Courtesy:  Ashton Magnuson Media

Courtesy: Ashton Magnuson Media

Organizers of the annual Rocklahoma concert festival announced this week that they will make available a new ticket package for audiences.

The new Zippo Encore Fan Package For Two will be available beginning next Tuesday, March 18th at 1pm ET/12pm CT.  The package includes:

  • Two (2) Weekend General Admission Tickets (inclusive of all service charges and fees)
  • Meal vouchers (two per day)
  • Two (2) Official Festival Zippo Lighters
  • One (1) one-year subscription to Revolver Magazine.

Tickets can be ordered online at the official Rocklahoma website,

Also on March 18th, ticket prices both for general admission tickets and general admission 4-packs will increase.  General admission tickets currently are available for a price of $109 plus fees.  Beginning March 18th, that price will increase to $129 plus fees.  Weekend 4-pack General Admission packs will increase from $349 plus fees to $399 plus fees.  This takes effect beginning at 1pm ET/12pm CT.

Members of the military can get discounted tickets for the Rocklahoma festival online at  Prices for those tickets will also increase March 18th at 1pm ET/12pm CT.

The new ticket package and price increases are not all that organizers announced this week for the annual festival.  Organizers also announced the return of the “Miss Rocklahoma” contest.  The contest runs through April 18th.  Ten finalists will be announced in late April online at  Contestants and fans can register and vote online at

The complete lineup for this year’s edition of the Rocklahoma Festival is:  Kid Rock, Five Finger Death Punch, Staind, Twisted Sister, Deftones, Seether, Motörhead, Jackyl, Filter, Black Label Society, Theory of a Deadman, Killswitch Engage, Skid Row, Tom Keifer of Cinderella, Hellyeah, Kix, Down, Pop Evil, Adelitas Way, Black Stone Cherry, Trivium, Texas Hippie Coalition, The Pretty Reckless, Thousand Foot Krutch, Redlight King, Skindred, KYNG, We As Human, Nothing More, Devour the Day, Heaven’s Basement, Gemini Syndrome, Butcher Babies, Eve to Adam, Truckfighters, Scorpion Child, Twelve Foot Ninja, Kill Devil Hill, Killer Dwarfs, Mandy Lion, Bai Bang, Lynam, ASKA, Black Tora, Firstryke, Mystery, Nasty Habit, Sleepy Hollow, Wicked, Down & Dirty, Loveblast, Ruff Justice, Ratchet Dolls, Ragdoll, Dellacoma, Chaotic Resemblance, Scattered Hamlet, Siren, Mach22, Tempt, London’s Dungeon, Mine Enemies Fall, Station, The Chimpz, Sleepwalking Home, Well Hung Heart, Framing The Red, Blackwater Rebellion, Dryvr, Jet West and Dirty Crush.

The annual Rocklahoma Festival is sponsored by Bud Light, U.S. Cellular, Jagermeister, Monster Energy, Hard Rock Casino, Route 66 RVs, and Jack Daniels.

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Carmine Appice Announces New Summer Fan Camp

Carmine Appice Metal Fan Camp Logo

Veteran musician Carmine Appice is one of the rock world’s most well known drummers.  He has played with the likes of Vanilla Fudge and Cactus among many others.  Now this famed drummer is offering fans the chance to meet him and some of his equally famous musicians thanks to Carmine Appice’s Rockaholics Metal Fan Camp. 

Carmine Appice’s Metal Fan Camp is scheduled to run August 26th – 30th at Full Moon Resort in the heart of the “Forever Wild” Catskill Forest Preserve.  The preserve is just one hour west of Woodstock, New York.  Appice will be joined at the camp by fellow famed musicians, singer/guitarist Eric Bloom (Blue Oyster Cult), drummer James Kottak (Scorpions), guitarist Eddie Ojeda (Twisted Sister), and famed shredder Michael Angelo Baito.  The quartet will serve as “camp counselors” during the course of the fan camp.  While at the camp, fans will take in special performances by the “counselors” and take part in Q&A sessions.  The camp will even include an in person event taken from Appice’s YouTube series, “Cooking With Carmen” called “Carmine Cookoff.” Fans can check out “Cooking With Carmen” segments online at  Each night will end with special jam sessions by the camp’s celebrity counselors.

The fan camp offers a number of pricing options based on available accommodations.  Packages are available online now at  Packages start at $795.  They include lodging, access to all gourmet meals, performances, and camp activities.  Fans who take part in the camp will get to take in all of this and more.  The more includes: a spring-fed swimming pool, a number of hiking trails through the Catskill Mountains, an on-site access to the Esopus Creek.  Fans can keep up with the latest details on Carmine Appice’s Metal Fan Camp on its official website and Facebook page, and

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Have A Very Twisted Christmas With New Twisted Sister Live DVD, CD

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Vision

Thanksgiving has come and gone once again.  And the annual shopping frenzy that is Black Friday is once again upon us.  That means stores have stocked their shelves with the annual load of holiday CD’s from around the world of popular music.  The problem with all those holiday albums is that so many of them sound the same.  However, there are the few diamonds in the rough that will make people stop and take notice.  One of those diamonds in the rough comes from one of the biggest bands of the 80’s hair metal scene.  That band is Twisted Sister. 

In 2006, Twisted Sister started a now long-running tradition of holding a live Christmas show in Las Vegas.  The band’s 2006 performance is available on CD right now.  And now, the band has also released both the CD and DVD portion of the band’s 2009 performance. Both the CD and DVD half of this show are excellent companion pieces to one another right from the show’s opening.  Those audiences who originally only had the audio recording of the band’s ’06 show were left to wonder exactly what was going on as the show kicked off, considering the music.  Now, those same audiences get to see “Santa Snider’s” elves getting everything set up and introducing the band members one at a time.  It all leads up to Snider himself being brought in on a sleigh pulled by a bevy of young women.  As soon as Snider gets out of the sleigh and it’s pulled off stage, he and his band mates immediately launch into ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.’  Anyone who has heard Snider’s album, Dee Does Broadway have something of an idea of what to expect in this collection of re-imagined holiday standards.

The band’s take on ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’, ‘Deck The Halls’, and ‘I’ll Be Home For Christmas’ are unlike anything that most audiences have ever heard in terms of holiday tunes.  To say that the band has amped them up wouldn’t properly do justice to the band’s performance.  It’s something that has to be seen and heard to be believed.  The band’s renditions of the classic carols aren’t all that the band tackles in this archived show.  It also handles a handful of its classic tunes, including ‘Shoot ‘Em Down’, ‘I Wanna Rock’ and the song that made the band famous, ‘We’re Not Gonna Take It.’  Snider notes as the show closes what Twisted Sister show would be complete without the song that brought this band to fame.

The show’s fan favorite closer isn’t the only high point of this live performance.  Fans will find the overall clam and camp of the entire show entertaining.  And the skit with “Satan Claus” is a laugh riot.  Along with poking fun at the band, there are little jabs at The Rolling Stones’ guitarist Keith Richards and the “Prince of Darkness” himself, Ozzy Osbourne.  They were of course just part of what made this skit funny.       This jolly man in red had a lot more than toys in his big bag.  Imagine Billy Bob Thornton from Bad Santa, only far cruder.  There you go.  Whether for that skit or the performance or the music itself, this CD and DVD set will leave any Twisted Sister fan to have a very Twisted Christmas.  Both the CD and DVD are available now in stores and online.  They can be ordered online direct via Eagle Rock Entertainment’s website at

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