Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Geeking Out With Hail!

Last night, Seth and I had the great pleasure of seeing Hail!, a metal cover band made up of Dave Ellefson (Megadeth) on bass, Andreas Kisser (Sepultura) on guitar, Mike Portnoy (Dream Theater) on drums, and Tim "Ripper" Owens (Judas Priest, Iced Earth, Yngwie Malmsteen) on vocals at BB Kings. With the help of Chris Caffery (Savatage), Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth (Overkill), and Frank Bello (Anthrax), Hail! busted through a two-hour set of old school classics from bands like Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax, Motorhead, Pantera, Dio, AC/DC, Kiss, Metal Church, Sepultura, Judas Priest, and Iron Maiden. Quite frankly, it's a wonder I didn't wake up this morning with bleeding ears and a bad case of whiplash.

With all of those known names on stage playing such a wide variety of material, there were plenty of historical connections to be mined from the ores of metal lore. Here are a few of the more interesting ones we noticed:
  • There were a few different songs where one of the band members had been in the band that recorded the original: Ripper was in Priest, Bello is in Anthrax, Kisser wrote the lyrics for "Territory" and co-wrote the music for "Refuse/Resist."
  • Three of the covers were really covers of covers, done in the style of the band that did the first cover: "The Green Manalishi (With the Two Prong Crown)," originally by Fleetwood Mac but played in the style of the Judas Priest cover; "Symptom of the Universe," originally by Black Sabbath but played in the style of Sepultura; and "Got the Time," originally by Joe Jackson but played in the style of Anthrax. The later two songs get even more meta: each had a member of band who played on the original cover on stage to play the cover.
  • Hail! did not play anything by Megadeth at this show, but they did play Metallica's "The Four Horsemen," which is based on "The Mechanix," a song written by Dave Mustaine and included on Megadeth's first album - which featured Dave Ellefson on bass.

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