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.

More information on the annual Rocklahoma Festival is available online at, and  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at

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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