I'll try to fill these descriptions in a bit more later...
Andy West: Rama
Some nice music by Andy West.
Benny Jansson: Save The World
Even more great stuff from Benny!
Arjen Lucassen: Star One
(Inside Out 6 93723 65042 5/2002)
Space rock opera! Very nice!
(NB 27361 65862; VICP-61389/2001)
Not a best of; rather, a compilation of hard to get odds and ends like bonus tracks. Should have been sold mid-price, if not, go complain to your record shop!
Various: Tribute to Rata Blanca
Played on one song of this tribute record to Rata Blanca. Cool stuff!
Stratovarius: Infinite Visions
(NB 27361 65152, 65153/2001)
Long "home" type video with backstage goofs etc. Has all the promo (= music) videos as well, plus some other live stuff.
Johansson: Sonic Winter/Johansson Bros.
Is actually only a reissue, not a "real" new record (has "Sonic Winter" and "Johansson Brothers" in the same package. The audio was remastered though )
Jonathan Mover: Einstein II
Haven't heard this!
Benny Jansson: Flume Ride
More great music from Benny!
Silver Mountain: Breaking the Chains
A "reunion" record of sorts, but without the reunion!
(VICP-60963; NB27361 64642, 64649/2000)
It's actually only about 50 minutes long.
Best-of thingie from JVC.
Stratovarius: The Chosen Ones
Yet Another Best-of compilation. Nice cover, eh!!
Night: Under a Violet Moon
I was honored to be asked to guest on keys on a track (or a few, not sure how much they used) on this quite interesting record the style is almost upbeat acoustic folk music, but with a serious low baroque slant, with Candice Night supplying very nice, airy vocals. And Ritchie has been a hero of mine for a long time so that made it very exciting as well!
Roland Grapow: Kaleidoscope
(Japan: JVC VICP-60679/1999, Europe: SPV 085-21412, ROW TBA)
I met Roland the first time at Gods of Metal 1998. He's normally the guitarist of the legendary German power metal band Helloween. This is Roland's second solo album. The material is high quality melodic rock. I sadly only had time to play two solos on the record.
Johansson: The Last Viking
(Japan: Pony Canyon PCCY-01340/1999, South America: NEMS 107, ROW: Heptagon HECD-023)
A lot more cohesive and melodic than the two previous "Johansson (bros)" records. Göran Edman on vocals, Mike Romeo (of symphony x) on bass and guitar. The cover on the left (with viking art) is the South American one, the vikingless cover is for the ROW ("Rest Of the World").
Stratovarius: S.O.S. (single)
(Japan: JVC VICP-60437, Noise/)
Single. Has a cover of Scorpions "Blackout" on it...
(Japan: JVC VICP-60481, Noise/)
3rd and most ambitious studio record to date for me. Melodic power metal enhanced with sweeping orchestral and choral arrangements. This got a gold record as well.
(Japan: Avalon MICY-1073/1998, Europe SPV 085-31402 CD)
Semi-psychedelic but cozy instrumental record. The left cover is the European one.
Snake Charmer: Backstreet Bugaloo
(Japan: Avalon MICY-1070/1998, ROW Arctic)
2nd record with bassist/composer Per Stadin's band. Leans toward AOR metal.
Itä-Saksa: Let's Kompromise
Performing very briefly as "vocalist" (I was reading parts of Paul's letters to the Ephesians aloud in German) on a track of this CD by Mikko Karmila's band! If the cover looks a bit grey, it's because the cover actually is a bit grey.
Stratovarius: Live: Visions of Europe
(Japan: JVC VICP-60340, 60341, ROW: Noise/)
This record captured the Strato live show quite well IMO. No overdubs!!
Johansson: Sonic Winter
(Japan: Pony Canyon PCCY-0970, ROW Heptagon HECD-0XX/)
Some parts bluesier AOR with Leif Sundin on vocals, some parts more abstruse neoclassical instrumentals with Yngwie guesting on guitar. Yngwie did the guitar in his studio in Florida, at the same time that we worked out the arrangements for "Inspiration".
Yngwie Malmsteen: Inspiration
(Pony Canyon PCCY-01009/)
An album with songs that inspired Yngwie. A bunch of people played and sang on it. (Meaningless Trivia: I did the keys on "Gates of Babylon" but Dave Rosenthal was credited!)
Stratovarius: The Past and Now
(Japan: JCV VICP-60063, ROW: was it even released in the rest of the world? Noise?/????)
A compilation record of some sort...
Stratovarius: Black Diamond (single)
( Japan: JVC VICP-15082, ROW: Noise/)
Single from Visions.. has some live tracks, and a demo track, tacked on.
( Japan: JVC VICP-60026, ROW: Noise/)
Second record for me with Strato!
Anders Johansson: Red Shift
Electronic world music.
Jens Johansson: Fission
(Japan: Pony Canyon PCCY-01215, USA: Shrapnel SH-11182, ROW: Heptagon HECD-016/)
Polyrhythmic technoid progressive rock. The left cover is the one used in the US.
Stratovarius: Father Time (single)
( Japan: JVC VICP-15060, ROW: Noise/)
Single. Has cover of "Kill the King" on it..
Stratovarius: Will The Sun Rise (single)
(Japan: JVC VICP-18013, ROW: Noise/)
Single, with some live tracks tacked on at the end (from our first gig (at Tavastia, of course) with the "new" lineup (me and Jörg)).
(Japan: JVC VICP-5721, ROW: Noise/)
My first record with this brilliant Finland-based melodic power metal band.
Johanssons/Holdsworth: Heavy Machinery
(Japan: Pony Canyon PCCY-01119, USA: Shrapnel SH-11072, ROW: Heptagon HECD-011/)
Fairly bare-bones arrangements of modal groove riff sequences with long improvized stretches. The left cover is the one for the US.
Jens Johansson: ten seasons
Kind of mellow piano stuff recorded in NYC, summer of 1994. The left cover is the Argentinian version!
Bulldog: The Return of Mr Nasty
(Scandinavia: Arctic ARCD-003/1994, Japan: Zero XRCN-1183/1994)
The music is a mix of rap, pop, blues, and death metal.
Various: "Smoke on the Water/a Deep Purple
A bunch of DP songs which people are 'guest starring' on. (Yngwie, Paul Gilbert amongst others. Highlights: Yngwie, Paul and Jeff Soto IMO)
Robert Blennerhed: "7"
(Lakeside Music LAKE-2024/1994)
Instrumental record on Swiss label "Lakeside". Robert is a great Swedish guitar player. The music is heavy indian-influenced acid-fusion.
Tony MacAlpine: "Premonition" (Shrapnel/94)
(US: Shrapnel SH-1068-2, Europe: RR 8965/1994)
Played a few solos on it when I was in Cotati for the DP thing. Good stuff actually.
The Johansson Brothers:
(Japan: ZERO Japan XRCN-1127/1994, ROW Arctic ARCD-002/1994)
Some good progressive cuts, some poppier cuts. Made mainly for Japan. Found a good Swedish singer for this one by the name of Leif Sundin. The left cover (with the ugly barcode) is ARCD-002.
Jonas Hellborg Group: "E"
Somewhat complicated and heavy progressive funk using organ, bass, drums, coffee. Dry production. I think it's a pretty cool record.
Snake Charmer: Smoke And Mirrors
(Japan: FEMS APCY-8121/1993, ROW: Arctic Records ARCD-001/1993)
Pop metal made for the Japanese market. Pete Sandberg sings on this one. For Arctic info, see http://www.arcticrecs.se.
Anders Johansson: Shu-Tka
(DEM DEM 031/1992)
Interesting mix of Arabic, North African, West African, Swedish, ambient, and industrial music. Features Jamal Evans, Ahmed Alamnaghasi, Aydin Özgöröt, Tesfalidet Keflay. (The left cover is the old version..)
Shining Path: No Other World
(DEM DEM 029/1992)
Simulated thrash metal. The cover used to feature the pope with a Nazi arm band, which caused a lot of problems in Germany. The left cover is the one Jonas had to redesign (not much difference, huh!! But check out this higher res detail of the redone cover..) Mudbone Cooper singing here.
RAF: Ode To a Tractor
(DEM DEM 030/1992)
Really weird but nice, I think at least. Some free-form stuff, some ambient stuff, some strange electronic stuff. Features Peter Brötzmann, Anders, Ayib Dieng, Bill Laswell, Jonas, and a bunch of others.
Ginger Baker: Unseen Rain
(DEM DEM 028/1992)
Interesting all acoustic record. (Ginger Baker on drums, me on piano, Jonas on acoustic bass).. pretty laid back stuff.
Steve Ross: Midnight Drive
Not so happy with my own performance on thi record. Was rushed by idiot/studio owner that had made a bad deal with Varney (a flat fee for the whole record.) All keyboards were done in a few hours, and that included lots of stuff that was unison with the guitar that you can't quite hear. About a half hour was left for the key solos..
(Day Eight Music DEM 027/1991)
Medium tempo ambient noise-techno world music mix. Featuring Bill Laswell, Bootsy Collins, Jonas Hellborg, Ayib Dieng, and others.
Jens Johansson: Fjäderlösa Tvåfotingar
(Amigo AMCD-872/1991: Jimco Japan JICK-89122/1992)
Instrumental record with four lengthy and complex instrumentals. (Weird Swedish phrase "F.T." means "featherless bipeds", so it was picked with a tip of the hat to Plato but mostly because it has a bunch of cool Swedish dots and rings and stuff in it.)
DIO: Time Machine (video)
Had the video for "Wild One" on it... we made a video for "Hey Angel" as well.
I have no idea what this is!!
DIO: Lock Up The Wolves
(UK: Phonogram DIO912)
Single from the CD with the same name...
DIO: Lock Up The Wolves
( US: Warner/Reprise 926212-2, Europe: Phonogram 846 033/1990)
A nice record with very good sound IMO, and Ronnie sings his ass off as usual. There's not a real lot of keyboards on there, but that doesn't mean it's not still a valid record! To me, less felt like more. I look on the writing as a sort of transitional phase between the 80's (more melodic) incarnations of DIO and the mid-90's style, when Ronnie went flat-out experimental at times (I like experimental!) Ronnie (who is one of my absolute all-time musician heros), Simon Wright on drums, Rowan Robertson on guitar, Teddy Cook on bass... this was a very happy and carefree period of my life. Warner was a pretty cool label as well..
Erik Borelius: Fantasy
(EMI Sweden 7903632/1987)
A soft-edge instrumental guitar record. I played a solo on one of the tracks..
Yngwie Malmsteen The YM Collection
This was some sort of compilation record, I think.
RF: collection video
Does this exist? Not sure. If it does, it has a couple of promotional videos on it too. Perhaps "I'll see the light", "You don't remember" and "Heaven tonight".. and some Russian footage?
RF: Live in Leningrad (video)
Better video. I had stupid Russian cigarrette ("papiryoska") in mouth because we were told it was for a Soviet-only broadcast, not a video, and certainly not world-wide.. :P
RF: Trial by Fire: "Live" In Leningrad
(Polydor 839 726-2/1989)
Awful sound. Everything overdubbed except the drums (which you can't hear anyway) and most of the key solos.
(Polygram P32P (POCP?) 20150/1988)
Even more of an attempt at commercialism, but pretty cool anyway. Joe Lynn Turner sang here. Good keyboard stuff too in places.
More of an attempt at commercialism. New singer and big budget. First recording delivered under contract with Polygram USA (the others were one-shots that went thru Polydor KK Japan IIRC.)
RF: Live in Japan 85
(video). (Polydor 6512-8/1985)
Quaint. Rookie band does their third gig ever together in front of a Japanese audience and camera crew. Is possibly called "Chasing with Yngwie" nowadays and has the catalog number POVV-1601..
RF: Marching Out
This is a little more straightforward than "YJM's RF", has vocals on most songs. Also has that typical neoclassical Swedish sound harmonically.
Pretty awful. Contains rough mixes from the "RF live in Japan" video and a few cuts from Marching Out. We were a bit drunk when recording this and it was only our third gig together as a band..
RF: Yngwie J Malmsteen's Rising Force
Good. A mostly instrumental neo-classical metal record. Was nominated for a Grammy in the US. Drums were played by Barriemore Barlow on this one. (All the Rising Force stuff I played on came out on Polymer.. er, I mean Polygram.)
Silver Mountain: Shakin' Brains
(RoadRunner RRCY-2011/1983, Japan: Apollon/Fems Japan APCY-8020 CD/1991)
A bit awful* The music is early-80s Maiden/ Rainbow/ Purple-influenced rock record. There are some interesting keyboard bits here and there.