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Skid Row (United States)

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Skid Row is a hard rock/heavy metal band that was formed by bassist Rachel Bolan and guitarist Dave Sabo, who got the band a quick record deal through being close friends with Jon Bon Jovi, lead singer of popular hard rock band Bon Jovi. In 1987 Gary Moore, of the other band name Skid Row, sold the rights to the name for $35,000. The band signed a deal with Atlantic Records and their first self-titled album was finally released in 1989. It included their three most famous songs: “18 and Life”, “I Remember You” and their first single “Youth Gone Wild”. They performed at the Moscow peace festival in 1989 along with Ozzy Osbourne, Scorpions, Motley Crue, Gorky Park, Bon Jovi and Cinderella.

During 1990, the band prepared to record their sophomore record. Spring 1991 saw the release of Slave to The Grind; Though not as successful sales-wise as the first album it reached Number One on the American Billboard album charts. In the following year, there was a five-song EP of covers called B-Side Ourselves. The band took the years 1993 and 1994 off and did not release their third album, Subhuman Race, until March 1995, which is the last to feature their original line-up.

The band’s original line-up parted ways in 1996, when frontman Sebastian Bach was fired and was replaced with singer Sean McCabe. Bach moved on to a solo career and Skid Row never recorded with McCabe. Shortly after Bach’s departure drummer Rob Affuso was also fired. The rest of the members, including Sean McCabe, did a project named Ozone Monday, which never saw a release. There was no sign of reforming until 1999, adding Johnny Solinger as the new singer and Phil Varone on drums. The band finally toured again and put out a new album in 2003, entitled Thickskin, on their new label, Skid Row Records.

Their most recent album is the late-2006 release Revolutions Per Minute. The twelve new songs on Revolutions Per Minute see Skid Row pulling out all the stops. Bolan, Hill and Sabo play their guitars with a vengeance, firing off power chords by the second, turning their amps to the max and apparently knowing but one direction - straight ahead! Whether on the hook-oriented opener, “Disease”, the aggressive “Another Dick in The System”, the catchy “White Trash” or the programmatic “Shut Up Baby, I Love You” - their unadulterated vitality seems to practically jump at the listener. The two string magicians expertly throw the bait to vocalist Johnny Solinger, who skillfully elaborates on the theme, refining the material further. Like his predecessor, Solinger pulls all the compositional strings, the material is constructed around him, he is at the epicenter of a sound quake that comes at the audience with full force. It is the power of a track named “Strength” that marks Skid Row in general and Revolutions Per Minute in particular. And it is the close attachment of the five band members to their home country that continues to shine through and that Skid Row express on their country rock number, “You Lie”.

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