Friday, July 21, 2017

July 21st, 2017 - Loud 'N' Proud With Mons Meg


Happy Friday!  The Meista here tonight getting loud and proud with "Loud 'N' Proud" by Scottish rockers Nazareth and a Mons Meg Scotch Ale from Gigantic Brewing Company!


Album Info:
  • Artist: Nazareth
  • Title: "Loud 'N' Proud"
  • Recorded: 1973
  • Release date: November 1973 (4th studio album by Nazareth)
  • Record company: A&M Records
  • Production: Roger Glover (of Deep Purple fame)
  • Album cover art: Dave Field
  • Personnel: Pete Agnew (bass guitar, Fuzz bass, and backing vocals), Manny Charlton (lead, slide and acoustic guitars, and backing vocals), Dan McCafferty (lead vocals), and Darrell Sweet (percussion, drums, and backing vocals)
  • Additional musicians: Roger Glover (bass guitar and percussion on "Free Wheeler")
  • Musical style: Hard rock, rock and roll
  • Sound: Energetic, hard rockin', and punchy, Nazareth's 4th album, "Loud 'N' Proud" is further proof of the band's musical prowess and heavy rock dominance and musical in the early '70s!  
  • Major themes: Perseverance, aggression, rebellion, life, death, love, hope, etc.
  • Tracks:  
  1. "Go Down Fighting"
  2. "Not Faking It"
  3. "Turn On Your Receiver"
  4. "Teenage Nervous Breakdown" (Little Feat cover)
  5. "Free Wheeler"
  6. "This Flight Tonight" (Joni Mitchell cover)
  7. "Child In The Sun"
  8. "The Ballad Of Hollis Brown" (Bob Dylan cover)


Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Gigantic Brewing Company (Portland, Oregon) 
  • Website: https://giganticbrewing.com/
  • Brew: Mons Meg Scotch Ale
  • Style: Scottish Ale / Wee Heavy
  • Serving: 22 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 8.0%
  • IBUs: 28
  • Ingredients: Golden Promise, Northwest Pale, Patagonia C40, Simpson C80, and Roasted Barley malts with Willamette hops
  • Pour: The Mons Meg pours a deep mahogany with a thin and filmy white head with good sustain and minimal lacing.
  • Nose: The nose is malty, bready, sweet, and hearty.  There are aromas of burnt toffee, fruitcake, sweet malts, barley, nuts, light herbs and spices, dark fruit, and oak.
  • Taste: The taste of the Mons Meg is rich, full-flavored, roasty, toasty, fruity, sweet, and woody.  There are notes of roasted malts, sweet caramel, plum, raisin, fig, light spices, and hints of peat, oak, and cocoa.
  • Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with lower carbonation, the mouthfeel is thick, sticky, and smooth with a sweet, dry finish. 

Overall pairing:
The Mons Meg Scotch Ale from Gigantic Brewing Company is a rich, sweet, and delicious brew with a little bit of punch... perfect for the heavy duty rock and roll power of Nazareth's "Loud 'N' Proud"!  The sweet caramel flavors go great with the grooves while the light smoky and booziness is great for the gravelly vocals of McCafferty!

Cheers!!  Rock on!!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

July 20th, 2017 - Black Rain Falling On The Black House


Good evening!  The Meista here tonight getting heavy, aggressive, and introspective with Death's amazing 4th album, "Human" and a Space Ghost Golden Session Barleywine Ale, a collaborative brew from Ecliptic Brewing and Melvin Brewing!


Album Info:
  • Artist: Ozzy Osbourne
  • Title: "Black Rain"
  • Recorded: 2006 at The Music Machine in Beverly Hills, California
  • Release date: May 22nd, 2007 (10th studio album by Ozzy Osbourne)
  • Record company: Epic Records
  • Production: Ozzy Osbourne and Kevin Churko
  • Album cover art: Joshua Marc Levy
  • Personnel: Ozzy Osbourne (vocals) with Mike Bordin (drums), Rob "Blasko" Nicholson (bass), and Zakk Wylde (guitars, keyboards, and backing vocals)
  • Musical style: Heavy metal
  • Sound: Maybe not as powerful and as memorable as his earlier solo albums, "Black Rain" is still a rockin' Ozzy album... one that I don't think gets the credit it deserves!  This would be the last album that Wylde and Bordin would play on and they both shine!  
  • Major themes: At times introspective and at times examining social issues with a critical eye, themes on "Black Rain" include life and death, rock and roll, war, environmental destruction, hate, love, power, corruption, greed, hope, etc.
  • Tracks:  
  1. "Not Going Away"
  2. "I Don't Wanna Stop"
  3. "Black Rain"
  4. "Lay Your World On Me"
  5. "The Almighty Dollar"
  6. "11 Silver"
  7. "Civilize The Universe"
  8. "Here For You"
  9. "Countdown's Begun"
  10. "Trap Door"


Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Modern Times Beer (San Diego, California) 
  • Website: http://www.moderntimesbeer.com/
  • Brew: Nitro Black House With Coffee, Coconut & Cocoa
  • Style: Oatmeal Stout
  • Serving: 16 ounce can
  • ABV: 5.8%
  • IBUs: 40
  • Ingredients: Two Row, Oats, Crystal 60, Pale Chocolate, Munich, Roasted Barley, Flaked Barley, Midnight Wheat, Carapils, and Kiln Coffee malts with coconut and cocoa nibs, and Ethiopia Hambela and Sumatra Mandheling coffees                       
  • Pour: The Nitro Black House pours an opaque ink black with a creamy mocha head with good sustain and intricate lacing.
  • Nose: The nose is a big blast of chocolate, coffee, and coconut.  There are aromas of nutty toasted coconut, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, cocoa, and coffee up front, followed by toasted malt, oatmeal, cream, and toffee.
  • Taste: The taste of the Nitro Black House is like the nose... earthy, rich, chocolaty, malty, and nutty.  There are notes of toasted coconut, blonde coffee roast, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, cream, light marshmallow, roasted malts, and toffee/caramel.
  • Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with low carbonation, the mouthfeel is creamy, velvety, and thick with a dry and sweet finish. 

Overall pairing:
The thick, creamy, chocolaty, coffee, nutty, and rich flavors and aromas of Modern Times' wonderful Nitro Black House With Coffee, Coconut & Cocoa is a great brew to kick back with on a quiet night and rock out with the power and depth that is Ozzy's underrated "Black Rain"!  'Nuff said!

Cheers and hails!! 

Saturday, July 15, 2017

July 15th, 2017 - The Space Ghost And The Human Are Trapped In A Cosmis Sea Of Vacant Planets


Good evening!  The Meista here tonight getting heavy, aggressive, and introspective with Death's amazing 4th album, "Human" and a Space Ghost Golden Session Barleywine Ale, a collaborative brew from Ecliptic Brewing and Melvin Brewing!


Album Info:
  • Artist: Death
  • Title: "Human"
  • Recorded: 1991
  • Release date: October 22nd, 1991 (4th studio album by Death)
  • Record company: Relativity Records / Relapse Records
  • Production: Scott Burns and Chuck Schuldiner
  • Album cover art: David Bett (art direction) and René Miville (art)
  • Personnel: Steve DiGiorgio (bass guitar), Paul Masvidal (guitar), Sean Reinert (drums and percussion), and Chuck Schuldiner (guitar and vocals)
  • Additional musicians: Skott Carino (bass on "Cosmic Sea")
  • Musical style: Technical death metal, progressive death metal, progressive metal
  • Sound: Highly influential, "Human" marked a shift in Schuldiner's musical approach to extreme metal.  The music became more technically complex and progressive with odd rhythms and tempo changes, intricate guitar work, and more personal lyrics.  The album is characterized by dissonant and harmonized guitar work with layered textures along with almost Avant garde jazz-like drumming and bass lines.
  • Major themes: More introspective than previous albums, the themes and subject matter on "Human" explore loss, despondency, the assisted suicide debate, the masks we wear, deception, dishonesty, dreams, etc.
  • Tracks:  
  1. "Flattening Of Emotions"
  2. "Suicide Machine"
  3. "Together As One"
  4. "Secret Face"
  5. "Lack Of Comprehension"
  6. "See Through Dreams"
  7. "Cosmic Sea"
  8. "Vacant Planets"
  9. "God Of Thunder" (Kiss cover)


Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Ecliptic Brewing (Portland, Oregon) and Melvin Brewing (Alpine, Wyoming)
  • Website: http://eclipticbrewing.com/  and http://www.melvinbrewing.com/
  • Brew: Space Ghost Golden Session Barleywine Ale
  • Style: American Barleywine / Imperial India Pale Ale (IIPA)
  • Serving: 22 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 8.0%
  • Ingredients: Citra, Galaxy, Mosaic, and Southern Cross hops
  • Pour: The Space Ghost pours a hazy, golden orange with a frothy, bright white, 2-finger head that dissipates to a creamy film with good sustain and soapy lacing.
  • Nose: The nose is a blend of light fruit, light dankness, and light grains.  There are aromas of orange juice, creamsicle, pineapple, mango, very subtle pine resin, and cereal grain.
  • Taste: The taste of the Space Ghost is characterized by .  There are notes of orange juice, pineapple, pine, cedar, hearty grains, crackery biscuit, light herbs and spices, light booziness, and a hint of caramel/toffee.
  • Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with moderation carbonation, the mouthfeel is crisp and thirst quenching with a dry, somewhat peppery finish. 

Overall pairing:
The Space Ghost Golden Session Barleywine from Ecliptic Brewing and Melvin Brewing is an interesting and hoppy "session" barleywine that is more in the realm of an IPA than a barleywine.  The interesting and flavorful character of the brew makes for a good companion to the intricate and richly textured technical death metal stylings of Death on their "Human" album!

Cheers!!  Hails!!  RIP Chuck Schuldiner!!

July 15th, 2017 - The Expat Prevails


Good evening!  Your drinking pal the Meista here with a pairing of Kobra And The Lotus' latest kick-ass album, "Prevail I" and an Expat IPA from Reuben's Brews!


Album Info:
  • Artist: Kobra And The Lotus
  • Title: "Prevail I"
  • Recorded: 2016 at Hansen Studios in Denmark
  • Release date: May 12th, 2017 (4th studio album by Kobra And The Lotus)
  • Record company: Napalm Records
  • Production: Jacob Hansen and Ted Jensen
  • Album cover art: Dino Tomic and Soloman Media
  • Personnel: Brad Kennedy (bass guitar), Jasio Kulakowski (lead and rhythm guitar), Marcus Lee (drums), and Kobra Paige (vocals)
  • Additional musicians: Jake Dreyer (lead and rhythm guitar)
  • Musical style: Power metal, heavy metal, hard rock, alternative metal/rock
  • Sound: With more of an alternative rock feel than previous albums, "Prevail I" is a powerfully complex and wonderfully balanced album!  Kobra's vocals are massive... her huge, mesmerizing, and beautiful range is a joy to hear!  The guitar work of Kulakowski and Dreyer soars!  And the rhythm section of Kennedy and Lee is a thunderous juggernaut!  I seriously cannot stop listening to this album and I cannot wait to hear "Prevail II", which should be released soon!  Definitely one of my favorite releases from 2017! 
  • Major themes: Good vs. evil, heroism, power, honesty, anger, aggression, isolation, judgement, hope, love, etc.
  • Tracks:  
  1. "Gotham"
  2. "TriggerPulse"
  3. "You Don’t Know"
  4. "Specimen X (Mortal Chamber)"
  5. "Light Me Up"
  6. "Manifest Destiny"
  7. "Victim"
  8. "Check The Phyrg"
  9. "Hell On Earth"
  10. "Prevail"


Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Reuben's Brews (Seattle, Washington)
  • Website: http://www.reubensbrews.com/
  • Brew: Expat IPA
  • Style: Imperial IPA
  • Serving: 22 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 8.0%
  • Ingredients: British Ale yeast strain, oats, and Galaxy, Motueka, and Nelson Sauvin hops
  • Pour: The Expat IPA pours a slightly hazy, light copper-amber hue with a white, half-finger head with good retention and light lacing.
  • Nose: The nose is a wonderful blend of fruit, citrus, dank earthiness, and sweet caramel.  There are aromas of orange, mango, guava, grapefruit, light pine resin, 
  • Taste: The taste of the Expat IPA is fruity, citrusy, herbal, earthy, and slightly sweet.  There are notes of grapefruit, lemon, lime, tangerine, mango, passionfruit, sweet tea, bitter herbs, light pine, and sweet, but light caramel/toffee.
  • Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation, the mouthfeel of the Expat IPA is crisp, smooth, and creamy with a dry and slightly bitter finish. 

Overall pairing:
The wonderfully complex, yet very drinkable Expat IPA from Reuben's Brews is perfect for the depth, power, and beauty of Kobra And The Lotus' fantastic album "Prevail I"!  Those citrusy and fruity flavors coupled with the sweet caramel malt notes go great with Kobra's massive vocal range, the electrifying guitar work, and the power of the bass and drums!

Cheers!!  Rock on!!


Friday, July 14, 2017

July 14th, 2017 - Ruination Times Ten



Good evening evil-doers and hop lovers!  The Meista here getting evil and heavy with Job For A Cowboy's "Ruination" and a RuinTen Triple IPA with Orange Peel and Vanilla Bean from Stone Brewing Company!


Album Info:
  • Artist: Job For A Cowboy
  • Title: "Ruination"
  • Recorded: 2009 at AudioHammer studios in Sanford, Florida
  • Release date: July 7th, 2009 (2nd album by Job For A Cowboy)
  • Record company: Metal Blade Records
  • Production: Jason Suecof
  • Album cover art: Brent Elliott White
  • Personnel: Ravi Bhadriraju (guitar on "Unfurling a Darkened Gospel"), Jonny Davy (lead vocals), Al Glassman (guitar), Jon Rice (drums), Brent Riggs (bass guitar and backing vocals), and Bobby Thompson (guitar)
  • Musical style: Death metal with elements of technical deathcore and black metal
  • Sound: Powerfully aggressive, yet surprisingly melodic, the sound on "Ruination" is profoundly death metal!  Davy's vocals combine guttural and brutal growls with higher-pitched, almost twangy shrieks... perfect for the album's subject matter!  The guitar works is blisteringly fast, rapid-fire, down-tuned madness, while the bass and drums sound like a WWII bombing run! 
  • Major themes: Politically charged, according to Davy, themes and subject matter on "Ruination" include "propaganda in the mainstream media and television, human rights in North Korea, the modern genocidal government of Nubia, the use of torture in American military tactics, consequences of nuclear war, and overruling by world governments and police states/martial law.", etc.
  • Tracks:  
  1. "Unfurling A Darkened Gospel"
  2. "Summon The Hounds"
  3. "Constitutional Masturbation"
  4. "Regurgitated Disinformation"
  5. "March To Global Enslavement"
  6. "Butchering The Enlightened"
  7. "Lords Of Chaos"
  8. "Psychological Immorality"
  9. "To Detonate And Exterminate"
  10. "Ruination"


Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Stone Brewing Company (Escondido, California)
  • Website: http://www.stonebrewing.com/ 
  • Brew: RuinTen Triple IPA with Orange Peel and Vanilla Bean
  • Style: Triple India Pale Ale (IPA) / Imperial IPA
  • Serving: 22 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 10.8%
  • IBUs: 110
  • Ingredients: "A frenzied mosh pit of" Magnum, Centennial, and Citra hops with orange peel and vanilla bean
  • Pour: The RuinTen pours a slightly hazy deep bronze hue with a frothy, 1+ finger, off-white head with good sustain and lots of soapy lacing.
  • Nose: The nose is fruity, citrusy, sweet and malty.  There are aromas of caramel malt, orange juice and peel, grapefruit rind, lime, vanilla bean, light pine resin, bready malt, sweet toffee, and orange liquor.
  • Taste: The taste of the Ruinten Triple IPA is fruity, sweet, bitter, dank, and malty.  Imagine an over-hopped creamsicle!  There are notes of orange marmalade, orange juice, tangerine, a hint of mango, light pine, black tea, vanilla, cream, and caramel.
  • Mouthfeel: Medium to full-bodied with moderate carbonation, the mouthfeel of the RuinTen Triple IPA with Orange Peel and Vanilla Bean is thick, sticky, and fairly smooth with a bitter, sweet, dry, and boozy finish. 

Overall pairing:
The profoundly aggressive, boozy, and punchy RuinTen Triple IPA with Orange Peel and Vanilla Bean from Stone Brewing is quite the undertaking... as is Job For A Cowboy's "Ruination"!  Both the brew and the album demand your complete attention... neither are for the faint at heart or newbies to either genre!

HAILS!!

July 14th, 2017 - Soulfully Live In The Slick City Of Angels


Hello and happy Friday!  The Meista here starting the weekend off the right way with a pairing of "Soulfully Live In The City Of Angels" by the legendary Glenn Hughes and a Slick City Citrus IPA from Shades Of Pale Brewing Company!


Album Info:
  • Artist: Glenn Hughes
  • Title: "Soulfully Live In The City Of Angels" (CD and DVD)
  • Recorded: January 11th, 2004 at Sound Image Studio in Hollywood, California live in front of select group of guests
  • Release date: September 20th, 2004 (2nd official live solo album)
  • Record company: Frontier Records / Cleopatra Records
  • Production: Glenn Hughes
  • Album cover art: Darwin Foye (art direction and design) and Alex Solca (photography)
  • Personnel: Glenn Hughes (bass guitar and vocals) with Kevin DuBrow (backing vocals), Alex Ligertwood (backing vocals), JJ Marsh (guitar), George Nastos (guitar), Ed Roth (keyboards), and Chad Smith (drums)
  • Musical style: Hard rock, funk rock, blues rock with elements of soul, R&B, and heavy metal
  • Sound: I've always struggled a bit in describing the sound of Glenn Hughes... mainly because I cannot do him justice!  Simply put, his sound is power!  It is soul!  It is funk!  It is hard rock!  It is metal!  It is brilliant!
  • Major themes: Love, loss, heartbreak, honesty, passion, life, truth, mythology, etc.
  • Tracks:  
Disc 1
  1. "Can't Stop The Flood"
  2. "Higher Places"
  3. "Written All Over Your Face"
  4. "Medusa"
  5. "Wherever You Go"
  6. "Seafull"
Disc 2
  1. "Coast To Coast"
  2. "First Step Of Love"
  3. "Mistreated"
  4. "Gettin' Tighter"
  5. "You Keep On Moving"
  6. "The Healer" (bonus studio track)
  7. "Change" (European bonus studio track)

Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Shades of Pale Brewing Company (Salt Lake City, Utah)
  • Website: http://shadesofpale.com/
  • Brew: Slick City Citrus IPA 
  • Style: American India Pale Ale (IPA)
  • Serving: 12 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 7.0%
  • Pour: The Slick City Citrus IPA pours a very cloudy golden orange with a thin, but creamy head with good lacing.
  • Nose: The nose is citrusy, fruity, dank, earthy, .
  • Taste: The taste of the Slick City Citrus IPA is juicy, citrusy, fruity, earthy, sweet, and lightly malty.  There are notes of pink grapefruit juice, tangerine, orange, mango, and pineapple with light pine, green hops, and soft caramel.
  • Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation, the mouthfeel is crisp, refreshing, and sharp with a dry and slightly bitter finish. 

Overall pairing:
The crisp, bright, and citrusy flavors and aromas of Shades Of Pale's delightful Slick City Citrus IPA is a great companion for the fast-paced hard rockin' brilliance that is Glenn Hughes!  Those bold citrus hop notes go great with the depth and complexity of Hughes' vocals, bass, and songwriting, while the sweeter notes are perfect for the soaring guitar work of JJ Marsh!

Cheers!!

Thursday, July 13, 2017

July 13th, 2017 - Elusive Reflections In The Windows Up




Good evening!  Probably one of the best things about this silly little blog of mine is the chance I get to discover amazing new music from around the world.  I recently had the great luck of conversing with the wonderfully talented Jelena Dobrić, vocalist of the Tunisian power metal / symphonic metal band Persona.  She was kind enough to send me a copy of Persona's first album as well as their press kit!  So tonight I'm pairing Persona's amazing album "Elusive Reflections" and a Windows Up India Pale Ale from Alpine Beer Company!


Album Info:
  • Artist: Persona
  • Title: "Elusive Reflections"
  • Recorded: 2015
  • Release date: February 12th, 2016 (1st full-length studio album by Persona)
  • Record company: self-released
  • Production: Persona
  • Album cover art: Bader Klildi
  • Personnel: Youssef Aouadi (drums), Walid Bessadok (keyboards), Jelena Dobrić (vocals), Melik Melek Khelifa (lead guitar), Nesrine Mahbouli, (bass), and Yosri Ouada (rhythm guitar)
  • Musical style: Power metal, symphonic metal, progressive metal, alternative metal with elements of thrash, gothic metal, rock, traditional Tunisian, and orchestra
  • Sound: Bold, powerful, and melodic, Persona's debut album combines impressive progressive riffing with heaviness and beauty!  Dobrić's soaring vocals are a wonderful foil to the band's musical duality - aggressive and powerful rocking and intricate melodic harmonies and complex tempos and grooves.  You can definitely hear the musical influences of bands like Dream Theater, Opeth, and Nightwish, yet Persona's music is very original, very mesmerizing, and very compelling!
  • Major themes: States of mind, introspection, knowledge, relationships, conflict, truth, honesty, deception, etc.
  • Tracks:   
  1. "Somebody Else"
  2. "Blinded"
  3. "Forgotten"
  4. "Halley"
  5. "Ageless"
  6. "Torn"
  7. "Monsters"
  8. "He Kills Me More"
  9. "Persona"
  10. "The Sea Of Fallen Stars"

Brew Info:
  • Brewery:  Alpine Beer Company (Alpine, California)
  • Website: http://alpinebeerco.com/
  • Brew: Windows Up India Pale Ale  
  • Style: American India Pale Ale (IPA)
  • Serving: 12 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 7.0%
  • Ingredients: Citra and Mosaic hops
  • Pour: The Windows Up pours a slightly hazy golden yellow with a frothy, bright white, 2-finger head with good sustain and lots of intricate and sticky lacing.
  • Nose: The nose is earthy, dank, floral, fruity, and citrusy.  There are aromas of grapefruit rind, peaches, orange peel, mango, pine resin, ganja, wild flowers, green hops, light caramel, and light grains.
  • Taste: The taste of the Windows Up follows the nose and is very citrusy, dank, earthy, and floral.  There are notes of pink grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, pine, and soft caramel.
  • Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation, the mouthfeel is crisp, refreshing, and sharp with a dry and slightly bitter finish. 

Overall pairing:
The crisp, complex, and hop-forward, yet very drinkable flavors of Alpine's Windows Up India Pale Ale is perfect for the electrifying melodies found on Persona's "Elusive Reflections"!  The sweeter, fruitier flavors pair wonderfully well with Dobrić's beautiful vocal range and Bessadok's richly textured keys, while the punchier, hoppier notes go great with fiery guitars of Khelifa and Ouada, and the thunderous punch of Aouadi's drums and Mahbouli's bass!  Make sure you check out Persona!!  Visit their page at https://www.persona.tn/!

Salut!!  Živeli!!  Hails!!