So Cal Pt I: Johnny Jones and the Suffering
By Keavin Wiggins
We have a long history of showcasing standout
indie artists, but with this special we take it one step further and showcase
standout indie artists that are making it happen on their own. The three
artists that will be featured in this special in the coming weeks, Johnny
Jones and the Suffering Halos, Twelvehourmary and Roxy Saint, not
only do they all hail from Southern California but have by-passed the usual
rules of the music business to find success on their own terms. As
the industry becomes more and more cookie-cutter it is becoming more difficult
to find artists that not only standout from the pack but also may be the
leaders of a new movement in music. The three artists featured here
do not buy into conventional music business practices; neither do they
pander to the current trends. That makes it more difficult to succeed,
but despite the odds against them, they are all finding a measure of success
on their own terms with their personal and musical integrity intact. The
antiMusic Network salutes such artists, as they are keeping the real spirit
of rock and roll alive, and we are proud to present these three standout
artists that making are their own way, but more importantly offer music
above and beyond the bland major label fodder we are used to.
While the goal for most DIY bands is to
get their music out on their own and not wait for that "record deal", the
record deal is usually the ultimate goal. And when an artist takes it upon
themselves to go the DIY route with a self-release and succeed, it actually
makes it easier for a label to see the wisdom of signing them. That is
usually when labels will take a chance on a band that doesn't fit nicely
into a little "current trend" box. We here at the antiMusic Network
wish the artists featured here nothing but success, whether it is a total
DIY affair or they ultimately use their DIY skills to land a deal.
The three artists featured in this series
all cover different areas of rock. We kick off with Johnny Jones and the
Suffering Halos, representing the soul of real hard rock! In a couple
weeks, we will bring you the next band in this series, Twelvehourmary and
then Roxy Saint. Right now, get ready for some double-barrel
rock n roll from the Halos!
Hard Rock: Johnny Jones and the Suffering
Straight out of Hell comes a band that
rocks so hard Satan is afraid of them, so he sent them to earth to corrupt
the youth and to keep the burning souls in the 9th circle from rocking
out and having a good time. Sort of a reversal of Paradise Lost, but hell's
loss is our gain as Johnny Jones and the Suffering Halos have unleashed
their incendiary rock n roll on the masses with their brand new CD.
Sorry for the hyperbole but damned if the
Suffering Halos don't elicit that kind of response and make me want to
be a demonic evangelist shouting from the rooftops that "ROCK LIVES ON!"
The Halos take most of the elements that made heavy rock a keystone to
popular music since Ozzy growled out "Paranoid", Plant bellowed "Valhalla…"
and Hendrix made the guitar an instrument of mesmerizing possibilities.
If their sound is primarily old-school that's because Johnny Jones and
the Suffering Halos understand what put hard rock on the map. But don't
think for a moment that they are a throwback to an earlier era, they in
fact bring the righteous heavy rock sounds of the past into the 21st century.
The Suffering Halos have earned an honored
spot in the southern California music scene over the past few years for
good reason. Not only do rock fans flock to their shows, but the hardest
critics of all, fellow musicians, have nothing but respect for Johnny Jones;
that's how the current incarnation of the band came about. Frontman
Johnny Jones and drummer Billy Blaze were joined by former Wonderlove axeman
and heir to the Hendrix throne, Brian McIntyre, along with one of the most
respected bassist to hit the scene in a longtime, Greg Coates of Lowfive.
Together they have created an album that is a testament to not only the
Suffering Halos talent but also to what made us fall in love with hard
rock in the first place. With well-crafted songs and exceptional
musicianship, Johnny Jones and his cohorts take us on a ruckus musical
journey that at some points have us throwing devil horns in the air and
at others lighting a little something and letting the sound envelope us
in its irresistible grasp.
Johnny Jones had to overcome quite a few
hurdles to make this album happen, broken collarbones, line-up changes
and more, but the fans waited patiently. When the unholy moment arrived
for its release, the demand was so strong that the first pressing was an
immediate sellout. Not bad for some devil boys from Long Beach that decided
they didn't want to screw with the label system and put this album out
on their own. But it was a testament to the quality of the music.
No slick advertising campaign was needed to get the word out; the buzz
on the street among the fans was all it took. Now the labels are sniffing
around, so a deal on better terms is a real possibility. That's the smart
thing about the DIY route.
If you haven't been corrupted by Johnny
Jones and Suffering Halos then you are missing out on one big bowl of rock
n roll from one of the few bands that are keeping hard rock a vital part
of the music scene. Double devil horns raised high for the Halos!
Jones and the Suffering Halos
the Official website. - Listen
to samples and Purchase this CD online
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