The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world






1. Billy Thorpe – Tangier


A stunning (and sadly posthumous) masterpiece from the Aussie rock legend, deftly mixing Moroccan melodies and rhythms and instruments with Thorpie’s Aztec-rock, and THAT voice.


2. Jac Dalton – Icarus


The finest melodic rock album of the year, Dalton and Aussie guitar hero Graham Greene tear it up over 11 scorching hot tracks.


Jac says…”We're honored to receive such kind words, and proud to know that we've put something together that resonates with such discerning rock fans and listeners. After all, to be noticed in the rock arena 'ever' or 'at all' one must consider the company we find ourselves amidst and inspired by, and whose shoulders we presently stand upon - hoping that maybe one day we'll find ourselves alongside. To strike a similar chord, as have our heroes, it inspires us to reach ever higher and harder with all the projects that follow... and there's plenty more where ICARUS came from. Many, many thanks to The Rockpit for noticing."


3. Danko Jones – Below The Belt


“Fuck you” says Danko, all swagger and arrogance as he rides astride this irresistibly rocking slab of great hard rock songs.


4. The Union – self titled


Ex-Thunder man Luke Morley teams up with young gun Peter Shoulder for the best debut album of 2010, a storming Zeppelinesque bluesy rock beast par excellence.


5. Crazy Lixx – New Religion


Channelling the spirit of Def Leppard, sleaze and 1989, these Swedes made one of the catchiest and glammiest albums of the year in New Religion.


Crazy Lixx singer Danny Rexon says “Thrilled about it! These days it's really hard to get recognition for all your hard work and this just goes to show that you can affect people halfway across the globe with the stuff we're putting together over here. That's the fuel for the Crazy Lixx flame.”


6. Armored Saint – La Raza


“La Raza” is so good it makes Armored Saint’s status as almost-rans a joke. Make no mistake – La Raza is A-Grade world class heavy metal of the finest order.


7. Rock Sugar – Reimaginator


“Because pop rocks” they boldly stated, mashing up hard and heavy rock tunes with pop hits of the eighties and rewriting the rule book along the way. A brilliantly innovative concept and a fantastic party album from start to finish.


Rock Sugar singer Jess Harnell says “We are honored to be on this list - thank you Shane! If possible, we would LIVE in the Rockpit! Happy Holidays everybody!"


8. Slash – self titled


The last true guitar hero standing roped in a bevy of very special guests for his first true solo album, including wild cards like Fergie and Nicole Scherzinger. The result was an album full of instant classics and a new lease of life for the top hat wearing ex Gunner.


9. Babyjane – Are You Listening?


A world class album full of modern heavy rock anthems and head banging stompers from the band who are possibly the worthiest successor to the Guns n’ Roses crown in this new decade.


Babyjane’s vocalist & rhythm guitarist Andy Smith says “Thanks to all at The Rockpit. We’re honoured to be rated amongst such quality artists and stoked at the positive feedback for the album. The support from The Rockpit is greatly appreciated and has definately helped to spread the Babyjane word. In a town where the local scene won’t support rock bands and the street press is no more than a fashion magazine, you are a breath of fresh air. Keep it up.”


10. Quireboys – Halfpenny Dancer


The sleaziest UK retro rockers still standing from the class of ’84 give some of the best from their back catalogue plus a few choice covers the full acoustic treatment, complete with gypsy touches, whilst still retaining their dissolute Faces flair.


11. Iron Maiden – The Final Frontier


Maiden confirm their prog metal transformation whilst still retaining all the sonic elements we’ve loved since 1980, “The Final Frontier” is a modern metal classic.


12. Gasoline Inc – Fuel The Sol EP


Some of the slickest and most engaging rock we’ve heard in recent years, Gasoline Inc have what it takes to go all the way and we can’t wait for their debut album.


Gasoline Inc vocalist Gabriel O’Brien says “The Rockpit is one of those sites we constantly keep up to date with. The interviews and reports are always entertaining and informative - giving real insight into the world of rock n roll. Gasoline Inc value The Rockpit's opinion highly and as such we feel extremely honoured to be in their top 30 releases for 2010."


13. Pearl – Little Immaculate White Fox


Meatloaf’s daughter channels the spirit of seventies rock chicks like Ann Wilson & Benatar to produce a mighty album of belters, also featuring Mother Superior, hubby Scott Ian, Ted Nugent and more.


Pearl herself had this to say “Thanks man, that really makes me smile, that makes me happy – I’m glad you like it.”


14. The Poor – Round 2


What The Poor do best is rock out in the grand old Aussie pub rock tradition, and they’ve always been at the top of the heap in doing so. “Round 2” sees them at their best, delivering a rock solid album and playing live as well or better than in their nineties heyday.


Gavin Hansen, The Poor's powerhouse drummer, says "Thanks for your support and glad to hear "Round 2" made an impression on you - good to know some people still enjoy STRAIGHT UP NO BULLSHIT ROCK N ROLL!"

15. Reckless Love – self titled


The NWOSS (New Wave of Swedish Sleaze) also gave us this addictive slice of sugary bubblegum pop metal. Fantastically singable.


16. Hellsongs – Minor Misdemeanors


Who could have believed that Metal classics reinterpretated as Scandinavian folk songs could be so irresistible?


Kalle Karlsson says “First, thanks for your nice taste! [We are] really flattered of course! I mean, we´re pretty happy with the record but one of this years top 20 - well, thanks again. You Aussies seem to like some other good Swedish acts and it´s an honour to be in that company. Too bad our countries are placed so far away from each other, otherwise we´d already been touring frequently in dear Australia!”


17. Hardcore Superstar – Split Your Lip


18. Zodiac Mindwarp – We Are Volsung


19. White Wizzard – Over The Top


20. The Devil Rides Out – The Heart & The Crown


Singer Joey Kapiteyn remarks, enigmatically as ever, "You like us... you really like us..."



21. Helloween – 7 Sinners


22. Jason & the Scorchers – Halcyon Times


23. Generation Swine – self titled EP


Adelaide’s finest wasted youths make a bold statement on their debut EP – what this demo recording lacks in production values it more than makes up for with great sleaze rock tunes and a rock n’ f’n roll attitude to be envious of.


Drummer Stace Branford says "Thanks Rockpit dudes for all your support this year! New CD is to be released early 2011! Fucking awesome!"


24. Lord – Return of the Tyrant EP


25. Heart – Red Velvet Car


26. The Chevelles – Accelerator


27. Airbourne – No Guts, No Glory


28. Popa Chubby – The Fight Is On


29. Stone Circle – Living For The Sunshine


Singer Jeremy 'Harry' Harris says "12 months of blood, sweat and tears went into the new album so to be listed in the Top 50 for the year prior to the official release is a great compliment and says we might be doing something right! There's a lot of collabrative work in all the songs on "Living For The Sunshine". I credit this album as the starting point for a bright future. A collection of tight punchy tracks that has really taught me how to write and work with a great bunch of musicians and friends. Thanks to our supporters, the good press and reviewers out there and thanks to Shane for having the balls to dig a pit so large he can't get out of it.. the ROCKPIT that is!"


30. Motorhead – The World Is Yours



31. The Snew – We Do What We Want


32. Crashdiet – Generation Wild


33. Ozzy Osbourne – Scream


34. Black Majesty – In Your Honour


35. Joe Satriani – Black Swans and Wormhole Wizards


36. Acacia Avenue – self titled


37. George Lynch – Orchestral Mayhem


38. Chainsaw Hookers – First Blood EP


39. Black Label Society – Order of The Black


40. Buckcherry – All Night Long



41. Scorpions – Sting In The Tail


42. Hellyeah – Stampede


43. Bangalore Choir – Cadence


44. Pyramid of the Coyote – Monkey Empire


POTC singer Gary Cornell says “Pyramid of The Coyote and myself are completely blown away and stoked to be included amongst your top 50 CDs of 2010, and we’re extremely grateful to everyone who has notice all the hard work we’ve put in. We are also so grateful to everyone who has inspired and encouraged us to make this happen – we couldn’t have done it without them!”


45. Ratt – Infestation


46. The Blazing Entrails – self titled EP


47. Y & T – Facemelter


48. Accept – Blood of the Nations


Shane says "Accept return as hungry as in their early heyday with new singer Mark Tornillo and a fresh batch of metal anthems to rock the world's foundations. Classic uncomrpomising metal from the masters."

Accept's legendary guitarist Wolf Hoffman says 'We have been hoping for recognition in AUSTRALIA all our ACCEPT LIFE long!!! So that is another dream come true - as the year 2010 has been totally overwhelming to us! And to make all this complete, we do hope, we see you guys in AUSTRALIA soon! Thanks for voting for BLOOD OF THE NATIONS! "

49. Vince Neil – Tattoos & Tequila


50. Ronnie Wood – I Feel Like Playing


My LOW POINTS of 2010…


Announcement that there will be no Rock N America, and Rocklahoma will again be smothered by modern gruntmetal


Black Country Communion’s disappointing turgidness


Perth continues to be ignored by many tour promoters and misses out repeatedly


Perth punters, apart from a hardcore few, continue to show apathy and under-attend gigs, resulting in promoters leaving Perth off the itinery next time





The Runaways


Ladies & Gentlemen, The Rolling Stones


Beyond The Lighted Stage – RUSH



Keef Richards (with James Fox) - Life


Mick Wall - Enter Night: A biography of Metallica


Brian Cadd - From This Side Of Things


Stephen Adler (with Lawrence J. Spagnola) - My Appetite for Destruction




The invincible man of rock – Ronnie James Dio – succumbed to cancer. RIP RJD


Zakk Wylde sobering up


Todd Kerns almost losing an eye touring with Slash


Santana teams up with rapper Nas for a truly risible take on AC/DC’s ‘Back In Black’




Axl’s cover band continues to be late on stage every fucking gig – whats that? Did someone say ‘bipolar attention seeker’? Sounds like my ex…


Slash & the missus breaking up as soon as he has a big hit and tours the world


Best gigs


AC/DC, Subiaco Oval, Perth, 6 Mar

Whole Lotta Love - A Celebration of Led Zeppelin, Burswood Theatre, Perth, 3 Dec

The Poor with Diamond Eye, Charles Hotel, Perth, 4 Dec

Leonard Cohen, ME Bank Stadium, Perth, 24 Nov

Soundwave Festival, Bassendean Oval, Perth, 1 Mar

Ace Frehley, Metro Fremantle, 1 Feb

The Trews, Indi Bar, Perth, 8 Oct

Paul Dianno, Amplifier Bar, Perth, 27 Jun

Pat Benatar with The Bangles, Perth Zoo, 29 Oct

Blondie and The Pretenders with Adalita, Kings Park, Perth, 25 Nov

Metallica, Burswood Dome, Perth, 22 Oct

The Trews + Jeff Martin, Indi Bar, Perth, 10 Oct


Biggest anticipations for 2011


Iron Maiden, Slayer, Rob Zombie and many more at Soundwave


ZZ Top with Rose Tattoo and The Poor – and a new album!


Gypsy Pistolero, Diamond Eye, Generation Swine and Thrust CD’s


Will the Big Four come to Australia?


A new Van Halen album and PLEASE – an Aussie tour???


Rocking with The Rockpit for another glorious year


Throwing the best damn rock n’ roll wedding party my rock chick TJ and I can manage



Thanks to everyone who supported & encouraged us as we built The Rockpit. Thanks to all our PR and record label contacts for the swag, the interviews and the news.


Thanks especially to Chris at Riot Entertainment, Paul at Sony Australia, Dixie at EMI Australia, Janelle at Sunset Events and all the artists who have been so forthcoming with their time when we've contacted them directly.




Want more? You can read each of our contributor's personal favourite albums, highs and lows of 2010 and anticipations for 2011...


Read The Rockpit Contributor's 2010 Roundup here


Read Mark Rockpit's 2010 Roundup here


Read Todd Rockpit and Aaron Delbono's 2010 Roundups here


Read Metal Billy & David Carruther's 2010 Roundups here


Read Jo & TJ's 2010 Roundups here


Read Steve Warsap and Paul Haddlington's 2010 Roundups here