Slave To The Grind

Over the last few weeks I’ve had the urge to listen to the first two Skid Row relentlessly and during the entirety of this blog I’ve only posted about the band once. So in a change of pace from yesterday’s post here’s something still heavy, but very much removed from the evilness of Deicide. 

Skid Row and Guns ‘N’ Roses always used to go hand in hand together, so this post is going to be no different. Last week I posted how Appetite For Destruction was pretty much a perfect album as it celebrated thirty years. Unlike their touring partners back in the day, the New Jersey quintet managed to follow up their debut with an equally as strong sophomore offering. For me (and you know what people say about opinions) the dozen tracks on offer on the 1991 release has no weak links.  

Reading back the last Skid Row post from the dying days of December 2015, it came on the back of Tony Harnell departing the band and the internet flurry of Sebastian Bach returning to the fold. There were also rumours, or expectations, of an imminent global tour with the Gunners. So everyone was wrong on both accounts. 

The Not in this Lifetime tour is nearing its conclusion and Skid Row were not amongst the long list of opening acts during 130 worldwide performances on its nineteen month long trek. 

Harnell has been replaced with vocalist ZP Theart. Not really a household name, unless you are a DragonForce fan. South African ZP took over live duties and became a permanent addition to the band in January of this year. I’ve only seen a poorly recorded version of his first performance on YouTube and I wasn’t overly impressed, but I may be tempted to check out his inaugural British shows when they land here early in 2018.  

Released in 1991, Slave to the Grind would have been another college purchase and I know it was played to death at the time. The band had moved on a bit from the more glam orientated self titled release and were more of a straight ahead heavy metal band. There’s some really heavy stuff on this second record. Both albums have been heavily played in the twenty six years since they’ve been in my collection, but after those two I’ve hardly listened to anything else that has been released. 

Youth Gone Wild

It hasn’t taken the conspiracy theorists long to dissect breaking news from yesterday that Skid Row vocalist Tony Harnell has quit the band less than a year after joining. So obviously Sebastian Bach is returning to the fold, almost two decades after leaving the band, AND they’ll be supporting the latest incarnation of Guns ‘N’ Roses. Let’s watch this space shall we.

I’ve seen Skid Row a few times and Sebastian Bach too, but never on a stage together. In hindsight I’d loved to have seen them alongside L.A. Guns and Love/Hate in 1991, but again that was scuppered by transport issues. By their next headline visit in 1995 I was more immersed in the hardcore scene. If I knew what I know now and I had a time machine I would be at so many more gigs!

Like Appetite For Destruction their self titled debut is another really strong offering and another personal favourite, but compared to Guns ‘N’ Roses they followed it up with the superb, and much heavier, Slave to the Grind. I remember buying that in my first year at college.

I’ve dabbled with fanzines since I was at school, so sometime around 1989 was my first attempt. I didn’t know how or where to get interviews from so my first “issue” featured a Skid Row interview “borrowed” from a chat that appeared on a local radio station’s rock show (thank you Paul Anthony!). I didn’t have a typewriter at the time so it was all transcribed by playing and rewinding a cassette tape copious times and scrawled out by hand on my mothers living room floor. Needless to say it never saw the light of day

I really don’t like it when I just pick something at random to ramble on about as picking a track to offer you is too hard!! The link below has changed at least half a dozen times so far. I’ve settled on my introductory song to the band from the debut release – and my fingers are crossed the iPod shuffle spits some more Skid Row out sooner rather than later.