17 February, 2014

Flotsam And Jetsam: No Place for Disgrace – 2014 – new/rerecorded album


American classical thrash/speed metal legends, FLOTSAM AND JETSAM, had listened to their fans' requests, searched for the original master-tapes of their second album 1988's ‘No Place For Disgrace’ in order to re-release it, had eventually abandoned their quest and instead:
“decided to re-record the album and use some of today's technologies to recreate it. The aim was not really to change but to enhance it with the opportunity with the use of new tools. A lot of the die hards are really nervous about it but I think after the final result they will embrace it. The sound quality is 100% better and more refined!”
Since one should not argue with the masters of their craft, check out the rerecorded ‘P.A.A.B’ below and get yourselves a copy of ‘No Place For Disgrace – 2014’ here (Metal Blade shop), from iTunes or from wherever you usually get your music. ‘No Place For Disgrace – 2014’ was issued through Metal Blade Records on February the 14th, 2014 in Europe, on the 17th in the UK, and will become available in North America on the 18th (on March the 4th, 2014 as a CD):

Founded in 1981 by drummer Kelly David Smith and guitarists Mark Vazquez and Kevin Horton in Phoenix, Arizona, later on joined by bassist Jason Newsted (who just happened to be stuck in Phoenix and not belonging to any band at the time) and vocalist Eric “AK” Knutson, FLOTSAM AND JETSAM used to be known as “Paradox”, “Dredlox” and “The Dogz”, before adopting the name that stuck. In 1986 they recorded their debut album ‘Doomsday For The Deceiver” with producer and Metal Blade Records founder Brian Slagel, which was described as “a little rough in the production department”, “displaying a refreshing sense of humor” and “an important record for fans of early thrash metal” by Eduardo Rivadavia, AllMusic (more here). The record was reissued remastered in 2006 by Metal Blade:

Jason Newsted had joined METALLICA after ‘Doomsday For The Deceiver’ and FLOTSAM AND JETSAM signed with METALLICA's label Elektra Records through which they released their second album in 1988; ‘No Place For Disgrace’ featured new bassist Troy Gregory, as well as “a chaotic version” of Elton John's ‘Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting’. Next, the band signed with major label MCA Records and produced ‘When The Storm Comes Down’ in 1990, depicted as “one of thrash metal's more accessible offerings” by music critics. Prior to the release of FLOTSAM AND JETSAM's fourth album, 1992's ‘Cuatro’, new bassist Jason Ward became an integral part of the band. 1995's ‘Drift’ was succeeded by ‘High’ two years later, “marking a return to the old days of thrash, bereft of any mainstream or prog-rock influences” (Jeremy Ulrey, AllMusic – more here) and marking the band's return to Metal Blade Records. Michael Gilbert and Kelly Smith left after the album's release and were replaced by guitarist Mark Simpson and drummer Craig Nielsen. “Given many chances by the record industry to fulfill their potential, offerings like ‘Unnatural Selection’ seemed to pop up at the most inopportune times, stalling the momentum created by superior recordings,” was Jason Anderson's, AllMusic, opinion of FLOTSAM AND JETSAM 1999 recording (more here):

Twenty years and a dozen bandmembers after the band's inception, ‘My God’, issued in 2001, exhibited “fine musicianship, some exceptionally heavy riffs and tight harmony solos”, according to music critics. Nevertheless, disheartened after years waiting for success, singer Eric Knutson left the band. And FLOTSAM AND JETSAM took a long break:

In 2005, the band returned to the studio. They created a 47-minute concept album that revolved around the theme of death-related nightmares, ‘Dreams Of Death’, of which Alex Henderson managed to write the following:
“… in a sense, FLOTSAM AND JETSAM are like “Saturday Night Live” - even if they disappoint you today, you figure they’ll bounce back creatively tomorrow,” [more here] “… And Dave Mustaine [MEGADETH] thinks he’s had it rough, living in METALLICA's shadow… boo-f**king-hoo! No, that shadow has certainly loomed much larger over FLOTSAM AND JETSAM's career, as they weathered the innumerable years (including the brutal grunge era) of touring whenever and wherever they could while recording for a number of decreasingly invested labels, and gradually losing founding members along the way so that just a shadow of their old selves remained by the turn of the century. And yet, every time they were supposedly left for dead, the group showed signs of life via sporadic new studio albums that, though notably inconsistent, still boasted a few flashes of glories past,” [contributed Eduardo Rivadavia, AllMusic – more here]
Defiant, FLOTSAM AND JETSAM rebounded in 2010 with their tenth album, ‘The Cold’:

FLOTSAM AND JETSAM's eleventh full-length album, ‘Ugly Noise’, came out in April 2013 through Metal Blade Records, their first release on the label since 2001. The record saw the return of original members guitarist Michael Gilbert and drummer Kelly David Smith, who last appeared on FLOTSAM AND JETSAM 1997's album ‘High’. ‘Ugly Noise’, partially founded by Pledge Music, was produced by the band themselves who describe it as mature and close to 1995's album  ‘Drift’. ‘Ugly Noise’ awaits you here (Metal Blade store), on iTunes and Amazon: 

FLOTSAM AND JETSAM features: Eric “AK” Knutson – vocals, Michael Gilbert – guitar, Jason Ward – bass, Kelly Smith – drums and Steve Conley - guitar

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