Jaime St. James - Black 'N Blue
Straight from the school of hard rock - Jaime St. James - that all American man in Black 'N Blue is back with his band, ready to rock on, and wrap those chains around Heaven. 'Hell Yeah!' is their new studio release, and it proves once again that the strong-willed rock.
I had an interesting conversation with the misunderstood man of mystery. Perhaps it did not warrant some of his frustration, which might have been against those other sketchy journalists who have continually been drilling him about what happened with Tommy Thayer.
Indeed, he did not mean to automatically blast me for actually having and liking his solo album. Overall, that wicked '80s kid and I had a very fun conversation, sometimes in heat; but never nasty, lasting too long, or even without love.
Hail, Hail Black 'N Blue are back and still knocking on Heavy Metal's door!
MettleAngel: Hey Brother, how is it going? Today I have been jamming on your solo CD 'American Man'.
MettleAngel: Usually when an artist does a solo album, it is meant to be a departure from his main band. I recognized your unique voice, right away, which I appreciate.
MettleAngel: Overall, I like the album. I enjoy songs like the opener "Testify", "Hello, Halo", "Magical Taxi Cab", and "Die Like A Star". It was a bit difficult to find any information about it over the net.
MettleAngel: I read one review which was less than generous, but that is because the author did not want you to have that "dated" sound. He also did not know how to spell your name correctly. I could not find the album at iTunes. There were other artists with the St. James name, though.
MettleAngel: Dude, your name is mispelt all over the Internet too. Did you know that there is a porn star with the name Jamie St. James?
MettleAngel: Why is that?
MettleAngel: Well, of course! I am a fan of the band. I have been playing it for the past two weeks.
MettleAngel: I am digging it. I like the way you have captured the essence of '80s Black 'N Blue, but you have an updated, almost, dare I suggest modern sound. Even without Tommy, the band has written a great record.
MettleAngel: That is cool. If he wants to be Ace in Kiss, let him. This does not mean that the band is any less worth hearing without him. I assume all the songs are newly written?
MettleAngel: I have wanted to hear that.
MettleAngel: The only other thing I want to mention about you and Tommy is that I heard that at one time you were both in a Kiss cover band.
MettleAngel: You certainly cannot deny that Gene Simmons was a tremendous help in your career. He produced and helped to write the music for the albums 'Nasty Nasty' and 'In Heat'.
MettleAngel: I am curious to see what they will again do without Jani Lane (John Kennedy Oswald) on their forthcoming 'Rockaholic' album due in mid-May.
MettleAngel: Well I am from Cincinnati, and I know one show which you played at a club called Annies, where the fans would beg to differ with you.
MettleAngel: I was not able to attend, but one of my friends informed me that it was a disaster.
MettleAngel: You also had three strikes against you in the first place.
MettleAngel: Primarily Cincinnatians are die-hard supporters of Jani Lane, who is from Ohio. I personally do not belong to this group, but most of my other acquaintances do love Jani and Warrant.
MettleAngel: Second, we here are all very conservative. We fear change, and like to keep things simple. Again this is excluding myself, as I do not always agree with my city's social standards.
MettleAngel: Finally, you were drunk and tried to make amends by wanting to play Black 'N Blue songs - when all the fans wanted to hear was Warrant. I heard that it was a total fiasco.
MettleAngel: I will, and I will explain your inebriated attitude. No worries, as you are not the first artist to piss fans off, and definitely not the last. Now let us get to Black 'N Blue.
MettleAngel: That is the name of the new album, so I like your response. My journey with Black 'N Blue goes back to when I too lived in California. I was in High School, and I was listening to Metal Shop, when I first heard "Autoblast".
MettleAngel: That song sold me, and I became an instant fan. I love the first two albums. I did not support the rest back then, as they were wimpy and a little too glam for my taste. (Thanks Gene!) I like all your body of work now, and I appreciate your longevity. I am grateful that the new album has a current feel.
MettleAngel: I know Frontiers likes their bands to achieve that '80s sound. Do you feel that you have captured that?
MettleAngel: I did not mean that sarcastically. I am '80s too. I am not stuck in the '80s. I am not living in the past. I am always open to what a band has to offer. It is just that I love and appreciate the music from that era so much.
MettleAngel: I feel that people need to expand their horizons, which is why I support your work in Warrant.
MettleAngel: Good for you! I admire that endearing honesty, and I respect that attitude. Was the band able to get together and record the album in a studio?
MettleAngel: I know that nowadays it can get quite costly booking studio time.
MettleAngel: That makes it more personal, and intimate.
MettleAngel: This is how you and your band all learn from each other. I also appreciate your sense of humour on the album.
MettleAngel: Uh, wait a minute. I was not even thinking about that song. I burned the album on a CD-r once I received a digital promo. I did not even include that song, because I wanted to add some bonus tracks from your live album - 'One Night Only'.
MettleAngel: Honestly, I had completely forgotten about the "Hawking" track, which I barely played once. I did not find it too irreverent compared to what I see on a show like "Family Guy''. I was alluding to the song called "Jaime's Got The Beer". I thought that the song was hilarious.
MettleAngel: Yeah it sounds like you are a bit wound up, so just relax. I am here to keep it all cool.
MettleAngel: I like the fact that it is acoustic, and then it leads into the killer song "Angry Drunk Son Of A Bitch".
MettleAngel: A song like this lightens things up, and shows that the band does not take itself all too seriously.
MettleAngel: I agree. Are there any plans for the band to tour?
MettleAngel: That sounds like a good bill with Whitesnake, Kix, Tesla, and a whole host of Frontiers acts playing.
MettleAngel: I can sympathize with that.
MettleAngel: I will tell people that I think overall you have created a quality album sure to please any Black 'N Blue fan, new or old.
MettleAngel: I am very opinionated, and not sycophantic. I say what I feel. If I did not like the album, I would let you know exactly why. Have you heard the Canadian band Cauldron, who did a mean cover of "Chains Around Heaven"?
MettleAngel: You should definitely check it out. They are signed to Earache. I know you are very busy so I will let you go, with all my support, and appreciation.
MettleAngel: Do you mean that it has been an autoblast!
See also: review of the album