Sweden Is Bringing Glam Metal Back To The World
For those who were happy that Glam Metal apparently died in the early nineties your worst nightmare is coming true. It’s back! - Bigger, heavier and sleazier than ever. There’s a growing number of bands from all over the world who are proudly inspired by the ‘hair’ bands of the sunset strip, but the place that has the strongest scene is without a doubt Sweden. In this modern age it’s been far too long since we’ve had a new band conquer the world.
Most of the musicians in these bands would have been born as the Glam Metal scene was on its last legs. Many consider Glam Metal to be a blight on the history of rock n roll, for others it was the antithesis of all that is fun about rock n roll. For many rock n roll was always an escape from the daily grind. It was meant to be fun, inspiring, provocative and rebellious.
Many consider Grunge to have wiped out the scene, but in truth it was close to its last legs anyway with many bands losing key members, becoming burnt out for the fast lifestyles they were living, and perhaps worst of all the increasing number of bands emerging that were just cheap imitations of what had come before. The hair was getting bigger, the costumes were getting sillier and the power ballads were recycling the same solos. In short, it was becoming a parody of itself. It’s sad that what the genre became is what many will remember it for. When in truth there were some incredible musicians in the era, and some amazing songs. (And when you take away all the hairspray and spandex pants that’s what really mattered.)
In a recent interview Rob Zombie stated that the American market had never recovered the grunge era. I can see where he’s coming from. The anti-rock star image has stopped bands from wanting to grow their name and become better then the next band. Unlike the bands of the eighties who wanted the success, the money, the big houses, the girls, the drugs, and the notoriety. And yes, at the same time it could still be about the music.
Is it possible for a band in this day in age to reach the status of bands like Guns N Roses, Bon Jovi or Motley Crue? The audience is there. People still want the real thing. There are countless videos on YouTube with comments along the line of ‘I’m 14 and I’m sorry for what my generation has done to music.’ The past decade has seen many ‘retro’ bands achieve quick success like The Darkness, Wolfmother, Jet, and most recently Blues Pills. People still want the real thing. There will always be kids who seek out real music, especially in an industry now dominated by AutoTune. After Grunge died out there was a focus on trying to re-invent the wheel in terms of music, resulting in my opinion in some very mediocre music. Let’s face it. Everything has been done. The wheel exists, learn how to roll with it and you learn how to rock.
This feature will introduce you to some of these new emerging bands. Many take a heavier, sleazier approach to the music, some are more commercial. But whether you were a fan of Ratt or Motley Crue, Cinderella or Guns N Roses, Dokken or W.A.S.P, Poison or Skid Row you’re sure to find something within this collection of bands that you’ll like. If you’ve never heard any of the bands from the eighties, this could be a good place to check out the style… then do the research and see where it all began.
Above The Law
Bands From Sweden
Hardcore Superstar formed in 1997 and next to Crashdiet are possibly the most well-known of the Swedish bands worldwide. They have over 107 thousand likes on their facebook page, several number 1 hit singles and Grammy wins in Sweden.
They have nine albums to their name.
It's Only Rock 'n' Roll - (1998), Bad Sneakers and a Piña Colada - (2000), Thank You (For Letting Us Be Ourselves) - (2001), No Regrets - (2003), Hardcore Superstar - (2005), Dreamin' in a Casket - (2007), Beg for It - (2009), Split Your Lip (2010), C'mon Take on Me (2013)
Crazy Nights (with Dave Leppard)
Riot In Everybody (with H. Olliver Twisted – frontman of Reckless Love)
Crashdiet formed in 2000 taking influence from Kiss, Mötley Crüe, Skid Row, Guns N' Roses, and Hanoi Rocks. Die-hard Guns N Roses fans would recognize the name Crashdiet as being the title of an unreleased Guns N Roses song. They’ve supported Ozzy Osbourne in Sweden, playing to 50,000 people.
They have four albums to their name.
Rest In Sleaze 2005, The Unattractive Revolution 2007, Generation Wild 2010, The Savage Playground 2013.
After their first album original vocalist Dave Lepard committed suicide in early 2006. The band initially disbanded then decided a few months later to continue in order to keep Lepard’s spirit alive and to show the world what real music should sound like. New Vocalist, H. Olliver Twisted (Olli Herman – from Reckless Love) joined for the bands follow up album. Twisted would leave mid-2008 and the band’s current singer Simon Cruz joined soon afterwards.
Cocaine Cowboys (with Simon Cruz)
Babylon Bombs formed in 2001 in Sweden influenced by Kiss, Guns N 'Roses, Mötley Crüe, etc. This four piece band are gaining their following through hard work and constant touring.
They have three albums to their name.
Cracked Wide Open And Bruised 2005, Doin’ You Nasty 2006, Babylon’s Burning 2009.
Crazy Lixx formed in Sweden in 2002 influenced by Guns N' Roses, Aerosmith, Kiss, Whitesnake, Alice Cooper, Def Leppard and Mötley Crüe. They are more traditional Glam metal sounding than some of the other bands featured.
They have three albums, Loud Minority 2007, New Religion 2010, and Riot Avenue 2012.
For The Last In Line (Inspired by Ronnie James Dio)
Like A Rock Star
With influences ranging from Dokken and W.A.S.P to Whitesnake and Metallica, Fatal Smile add a modern heavier aggressive feel to the music and a Gothic style to the Glam Metal image.
They have five albums. Beyond Reality 2002, Neo Natural Freaks 2006, World Domination 2008, 21st Century Freaks 2012, White Thrash Heroes 2014.
Fatal Smile announced just before the launch of their fifth album, White Trash Heroes, they would be disbanding. The upcoming tour was cancelled and guitarist Yuksel 'Mr Y' Unutmaz issued a statement apologising for the band timing and for letting the fans down but ‘at a certain point in life you'll have to decide if things are really worth doing. I have come to the point where the answer is no – it's no longer worth sacrificing everything in my life, my heart and soul just to keep the train rolling.’
Get It On / Mind Pollution
Vains of Jenna
Vains of Jenna formed in 2005 and sadly disbanded in 2012. They played Crue Fest in 2005 and had demos produced by Guns N Roses guitarist Gilby Clarke. They toured with Poison and Ratt in 2007.
After parting ways with front man Lizzy DeVine in 2010 they hired Cast of Kings singer Jesse Forte as the new front man. After Forte joined Lynch Mob, briefly, the band disbanded.
They have two full length albums to their name. Lit Up / Let Down 2006 and The Art Of Telling Lies 2009
Front man Lizzy DeVine continues to perform.
The Poodles formed in 2006. They came forth in the annual Swedish music competition Melodifestivalen 2006. One of the more mainstream bands featured here. Less sleazy, more commercial appeal taking a lot of influence from Classic Rock as well as Glam Metal.
They have five albums to their name. Metal Will Stand Tall 2006, Sweet Trade 2007, Clash of the Elements 2009, Performocracy 2011, Tour De Force 2013.
When Darkness Falls
Dirty Passion formed in 2006. They are quickly growing a world established name for themselves. They’ve toured the U.S. and Europe with bands like Saxon, Accept, Y & T, LA Guns, Loudness, Mike Tramp (White Lion), Faster Pussycat.
They have two albums to their credit, debut Different Tomorrow (2010) and In Wonderland (2012)
Midnight Cowboys formed in 2006. They’ve played with bands like Hardcore Superstar and Babylon Bombs. Featured in the 2009 July issue of Classic rock magazine.
They have two EPS to their name. Suicide Circus 2006 and Taste of Oblivion 2009.
Sultans of Sin
Dynazty formed in Sweden in 2007. Since then they have released three full length albums and have toured in Sweden and internationally. They’ve signed with Spinefarm Records for their fourth studio album "Renatus".
They bring a more modern edge to the style.
They have four albums to their name. Bring The Thunder 2009, Knock You Down 2011, Sultans of Sin 2012, Renatus 2014.
A Shot At Redemption
H.E.A.T formed in Sweden in 2007. Much like the story of Guns N Roses, H.E.A.T came into being with members from two other bands came together and started to write songs.
They are diverse enough to have opened Toto and Sabaton. They’ve also supported Alice Cooper and toured Europe opening for Edguy in January 2009.
With the addition of a new singer, Erik Gronwall, in 2010 the bands popularity continues to increase.
They have four albums to date.
H.E.A.T. (2008), Freedom Rock 2010, Address The Nation 2012, Tearing Down The Walls 2014.
Bands From Finland
Finland is also producing some great bands that must be mentioned.
Anthem For The Young N Restless
Santa Cruz formed in 2007 when four hot shot musicians came together. Their song titles speak for themselves. They’re motivated and have the energy and talent to go far.
They released their first album Screaming for Adrenaline in 2013 and have a follow up slated for release in 2015.
Night On Fire
Reckless Love formed in 2001. They would be the most radio friendly of the bunch of bands in this feature. They would have received endless play on MTV back in the day.
Like Crashdiet, the band’s name is a reference to Guns N Roses. They started as a tribute band called Reckless Life.
They have three albums to their credit. Reckless Love 2010, Animal Attraction 2012, Spirit 2013
Shout At The Devil (Motley Crue cover)
The Local Boys
The Local Boys A super group side project consisting of Alexi Laiho from Children of Bodom, Jussi69 from The 69 Eyes, Olli Herman from Reckless Love, and Archie Kuosmanen from Santa Cruz.
They performed a one off gig of cover songs from 80s greats such as Van Halen, Guns N Roses, Poison, Motley Crue and other well known bands.
Bands from America
It must be said that there are still bands from America keeping the spirit of the eighties alive.
Buckcherry formed in 1995. Going against the Grunge era, they brought the hard edge spirit of Guns N Roses to the decade, and continue to release new music to this day.
They have six albums to their name. Buckcherry (1999), Time Bomb (2001), 15 2005, Black Butterfly 2008, and All Night Long 2010. Confessions 2013.
Death To All But Metal
This now famous band formed in Los Angeles, California in the early 2000s as a parody / tribute to the heavy metal music and lifestyle of the 1980s. By playing the club of the sunset strip as a covers band they gained a strong following.
They have four albums to their name. Hole Patrol (2003), Feel The Steel (2009), Balls Out (2011), All You Can Eat 2014).
I Don’t Care
Brides of Destruction
The Brides were a super group that formed in 2002 in Los Angeles, California. They were a super group that had consisted of members such as London LeGrand, Tracii Guns, Scot Coogan, Nikki Sixx, Kris Kohls, Adam Hamilton, John Corabi, Scott Sorry and Ginger.
Nikki Sixx formed Brides of Destruction with L.A. Guns guitarist Tracii Guns when Mötley Crüe was on hiatus in 2001. They disbanded in 2006 after two albums. Here Come the Brides (2004) and Runaway Brides (2005).
Scream & Shout
Dirty Penny formed in 2006. They’re influenced by Mötley Crüe, AC/DC, Skid Row, Judas Priest, Poison, and Guns N' Roses.
They were originally a Poison cover band called Antidote. They have two albums to their name. Take it Sleezy (2007), and Young & Reckless 2009.
Gotta Get It Right
Sixx AM formed in 2007 in Los Angeles, California by Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx, DJ Ashba, and James Michael.
They have two albums to their name. The Heroin Diaries Soundtrack (2007) and This Is Gonna Hurt (2011), as well as three EP's; X-Mas In Hell (2008); Live Is Beautiful (2008) and 7 (2011). Gotta Get It Right
Come With Me
The Last Vegas
The Last Vegas formed in 2009 and are influenced by Aerosmith, Guns N' Roses, Mötley Crüe, Cheap Trick, and Skid Row. They’ve toured with Motley Crue and have a song on Guitar Hero 2.
The album Whatever Gets You Off was produced by Nikki Sixx, and DJ Ashba.
Growing on Me
Bands from England
The Darkness formed in 2000, but seemingly achieved overnight success with their debut album in 2003. They disbanded after their second album but have recently made a comeback.
They have released three albums. Permission To Land (2003), One Way Ticket to Hell… and Back (2005) and Hot Cakes. (2012)
Something About This Girl
Jettblack formed in 2009 They have released two studio albums, Get Your Hands Dirty (2010) and Raining Rock (2012).They take a lot form the Classic Rock sound as well.
Originally known as skate rock band Skirtbox, who released two albums between 2000 and 2003.
And a band from Poland. (Possibly The Only One Of It's Type)
Nasty Crue formed in 2009 inspired by Steel Panther as a tribute to Glam Metal.