Covering Xtro II for Fangoria offshoot Gorezone and interviewing a director who’d rather be playing piano

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN GOREZONE #16, WINTER 1990 By Steve Newton Four years ago, Vancouver’s Expo '86 opened its doors to visitors from far and wide, who came to take in the World’s Fair and revel in its fancy displays on the theme of transportation. But lately the old Expo site has seen visitations of a … Continue reading Covering Xtro II for Fangoria offshoot Gorezone and interviewing a director who’d rather be playing piano

Album review: Roger Waters, The Wall Live in Berlin (1990)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, SEPT. 20, 1990 By Steve Newton With such a hodgepodge of guest artists—acts as varied as Sinead O’Connor and the Scorpions, Bryan Adams and James Galway—it seemed quite likely that Roger Waters’s new live recording of The Wall would turn out as a disjointed, hit-and-miss project. But despite the … Continue reading Album review: Roger Waters, The Wall Live in Berlin (1990)

Album review: Yngwie Malmsteen, Eclipse (1990)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 23, 1990 By Steve Newton When Swedish guitar whiz Yngwie Malmsteen burst onto the hard-rock scene in ’84 with the Rising Force album, he took a lot of people by surprise—and it wasn't just his funny name (pronounced "Ing-vay") that did it. Malmsteen was a classically influenced speed-demon, … Continue reading Album review: Yngwie Malmsteen, Eclipse (1990)

Album review: Bruce Dickinson, Tattooed Millionaire (1990)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 16, 1990 By Steve Newton Iron Maiden singer Bruce Dickinson cut his teeth on ’70s bands like Bad Company and Mott the Hoople, and on his first solo album, the steel-throated vocalist gets a chance to loosen the thrashier chains of Maiden and indulge in some of the … Continue reading Album review: Bruce Dickinson, Tattooed Millionaire (1990)

Album review: Heart, Brigade (1990)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 16, 1990 By Steve Newton I've been an off-and-on admirer of the Wilson sisters for many years now—heck, they used to play teen dances when I was a kid in Chilliwack, and I loved ’em. I loved ’em a lot more than I do now, that's for sure. … Continue reading Album review: Heart, Brigade (1990)

Album review: the Beat Farmers, Loud and Plowed and…Live!! (1990)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 9, 1990 By Steve Newton San Diego's prime providers of rude ’n’ rowdy rock ’n’ roll have finally done it. After years of putting on shows—a lot of them right here in Vancouver—that were so wild they verged on the criminal, the Beat Farmers have released a live … Continue reading Album review: the Beat Farmers, Loud and Plowed and…Live!! (1990)

Album review: Johnny Crash, Neighbourhood Threat (1990)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JULY 19, 1990 By Steve Newton Just last month the World's Greatest Rock and Roll Band (or one of ’em, anyway) was locked away in Vancouver's Little Mountain Sound with producer Bruce Fairbairn, putting the finishing touches on its next album. No, I’m not talking about the Stones here. … Continue reading Album review: Johnny Crash, Neighbourhood Threat (1990)

That time I tried telling Albert King that Elmore James was his biggest influence

By Steve Newton When I look back over my 39-year career in music journalism, there are some folks that I'm really, really glad I got to talk to. Like Albert King. Of the three big Kings--sorry B.B. and Freddie--I think I appreciate Albert the most. There was something about the way he could wring deep, … Continue reading That time I tried telling Albert King that Elmore James was his biggest influence

The Blue Aeroplanes find confidence with Swagger, Michael Stipe forces Morrissey to watch

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JUNE 28, 1990 By Steve Newton If you scan the liner notes to the Blue Aeroplanes’ new album Swagger, the guitar/bass/drum credits look pretty normal for a pop group from Bristol, England. Then you spot an unusual name at the bottom of the band line-up—Wojtek Dmochowski. And you see … Continue reading The Blue Aeroplanes find confidence with Swagger, Michael Stipe forces Morrissey to watch

Motley Crue plays Vancouver at the height of its popularity on the Dr. Feelgood tour

By Steve Newton A quarter-century ago today—on June 9, 1990—Motley Crue played the Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver. That was the exact same night Janet Jackson played B.C. Place Stadium. I chose the lesser of two evils—or so I thought at the time. Back then the Crue was at the very peak of its success, touring … Continue reading Motley Crue plays Vancouver at the height of its popularity on the Dr. Feelgood tour

Squeeze carries on undeterred after Jools Holland opts for his “Mr. Showbiz caper”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 25, 1990 By Steve Newton The liner notes to Squeeze's new live album, A Round and a Bout, contain a precise itinerary of the 892 concerts that the band has performed around the world since forming in '74. There are early shows at the Camden Girls School and … Continue reading Squeeze carries on undeterred after Jools Holland opts for his “Mr. Showbiz caper”

Tommy Aldridge talks Black Oak Arkansas, Whitesnake, Ozzy, and the brilliance of Randy Rhoads

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MAY 10, 1990 By Steve Newton After several years in the rock critic biz, it's easy for a writer to pick up the ONNTD syndrome. That's an affliction that occurs when you request an interview with a big-name band and the record company won't let you talk to the … Continue reading Tommy Aldridge talks Black Oak Arkansas, Whitesnake, Ozzy, and the brilliance of Randy Rhoads

The B-52’s make a triumphant return to Vancouver in the wake of Cosmic Thing

photo by Kevin Statham ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JAN. 26, 1990 By Steve Newton Why, on why, did the B-52's have to get booked into the Orpheum? As one of the prime providers of bouncy, shake-your-booty pop-rock, the band would have been so much better in a place where it's okay to move … Continue reading The B-52’s make a triumphant return to Vancouver in the wake of Cosmic Thing

Alice Cooper’s youthful band breathes fire into the shock-rock’s king’s classics in Vancouver

@shotbykevin ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, JAN. 26, 1990 By Steve Newton If Alice Cooper's concert at the Coliseum last Thursday (January 18) were a horror movie--and in a way it nearly was--it might have been called the The Return of Alice, Part 10: The New Blood. On his latest tour, the king of … Continue reading Alice Cooper’s youthful band breathes fire into the shock-rock’s king’s classics in Vancouver

Art Bergmann plays Sexual Roulette on behalf of downtrodden rockers everywhere

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 20, 1990 By Steve Newton It's a sunny Friday afternoon on Granville Island. Art Bergmann and I are negotiating our way through armies of cars—parked and mobile—in search of a suitable spot to have a chat. "I don't have any money," confides Bergmann as we head over to … Continue reading Art Bergmann plays Sexual Roulette on behalf of downtrodden rockers everywhere

The Cramps borrow Loverboy’s barricade to keep crazed Vancouver fans at bay

@shotbykevin ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, APRIL 20, 1990 By Steve Newton What do squeaky-clean teen idols Loverboy and the crude 'n' demented Cramps have in common? Sweet-bugger-all, you say? Pretty close, but the Cramps did borrow Loverboy's barricade to use in front of the Commodore stage last Thursday (April 12). With a house … Continue reading The Cramps borrow Loverboy’s barricade to keep crazed Vancouver fans at bay

The Cramps’ Poison Ivy says that what passes for rock ‘n’ roll isn’t

By Steve Newton On April 12, 1990--the Cramps played the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver. Oh man, what a show that was. R.I.P. Lux Interior. In advance of the gig I was fortunate enough to interview Cramps guitarist Poison Ivy--aka Ivy Rorschach--and that was a trip as well. Here's the story that appeared in the Georgia Straight … Continue reading The Cramps’ Poison Ivy says that what passes for rock ‘n’ roll isn’t

Laid-back legend J.J. Cale tells me “there’s no hurry”

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, MARCH 1990 By Steve Newton Eric Clapton has a lot of admirers, most of them appreciative of the fine music the British guitarist has delivered over the years. But J.J. Cale has another reason for feeling indebted to Clapton, and you spell it with a dollar sign. If Clapton … Continue reading Laid-back legend J.J. Cale tells me “there’s no hurry”