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Billy Idol on the cover of Maximum Ink

Billy Idol


by David A. Kulczyk
September 2005

What can you say about Billy Idol?  That the mold was broken after he arrived on the music scene with his pioneer punk band Generation X in 1976?  That he was music video pioneer?  That he lived the life of a rock star while retaining his punk rock beliefs?  After a serious motorcycle accident and some substance abuse problems, Billy Idol took a well-deserved twelve-year break from the music business.  His latest album, Devil’s Playground [Sanctuary Records] is pure unadulterated Billy Idol.  I interviewed Billy Idol via email while he was between tours in August 2005.

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I Am Dragon - photo by Kedar Joyner

I Am Dragon

An interview with Madison garage rockers, I Am Dragon
by Mike Huberty
January 2013

With influences firmly established from garage rock legends like THIN LIZZY and THE SONICS, Madison’s I AM DRAGON has been playing around the scene for the past two years. They’ve got a heavy, fast feel that gets a bit of DEEP PURPLE-ish feel with keys and organ to sweeten the sound. After a successful Kickstarter campaign, the rockers are about to release their new EP, “The Lucky Ones”, on February 1st and we talked to their lead guitarist and vocalist, Jon Stover, about the upcoming recording. 

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I Fight Dragons

I Fight Dragons


by John Noyd
May 2009

Bratfest 2009, Saturday May 23rd - stage two, early afternoon; the six-headed monster that is I Fight Dragons grab their joysticks and commence to rock with old school video game samples, digitally modified vocals and fanboy fantasies of conquering worlds and getting all the girls. Smarmy and cynical, IFD’s boyish charms and killer riffs pick a part hearts and kick out the jams. “I just tried to keep the guiding principle that it had to be fun, joyous, and smart,” says lead vocalist Brian Mazzaferri. A glib, gleeful stew of polished geek-pop anthems, old school video gamer gambits and rockin’ smartass scholarship, IFD take their Super Mario soundbites, new wave power-ballad cravings and studio noodling to a whole other level.

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Ian Anderson

Ian Anderson

An Interview With Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson On The 2013 Thick As A Brick Tour And July 22 Stop At Ravinia
by Gregory Harutunian
June 2013

Ian Anderson is best known as the frontman, singer-songwriter, musician, flute player, engineer, producer, and whatever other duties he will tell you regarding the legendary band, Jethro Tull. With more than four decades of performing under his belt, the last decade has seen him step out on his own projects. Distinctly Anderson, the music slides to the more melodic avenues in discovering instrumental nuances to dally with.

His own touring group consisting of bassist David Goodier, keyboardist John O’Hara, drummer Scott Hammond, and wunderkind guitarist Florian Opahle have performed with Ian on his solo dates, as well as having performed at various times as members of Jethro Tull. They all participated on the recent release, “Thick As A Brick 2,” an update companion to the original 1972 release which answers the question,” What ever happened to Gerald Bostock,” TAAB’s supposed writer.

Audiences got to find out firsthand last year, as the original TAAB was performed in its entirety for the first time since 1972 including the weather report and prostate awareness skits, that bookend with TAAB2. The 2013 tour extends the fun stateside through the month of July, concluding with a performance at the Highland Park (IL)’s Ravinia Festival (www.ravinia.org) on the 22nd. British singer Ryan O’Donnell, who has been active in the UK theatrical scene, was added to sing difficult vocal parts. Anderson wants to perform vocals and instrument parts as they appeared on the original THICK AS A BRICK.

A phone interview, conducted with Anderson, touched on the tour itself, the TAAB sequel, and what’s on his plate for future endeavors. What follows is an edited transcript of the conversation.

Maximum Ink: We last spoke three years ago, and I must update the more serious inquiries… what is your favorite color, and if you could be any tree, what would you be?
Ian Anderson: Still gray, a nice battleship gray. As for tree, still an oak. They’re slow growing, slow to mature, a bit grand, solid and decorative. Plus, they are quite useful, if you want to build a ship, sail around, and attack a small country far away, or something like that.

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ILONA EUROPA

ILONA EUROPA


by Tina Hall
October 2010

Singer/Songwriter Ilona Europa?s unique sound of pop combined with rocktronica has landed her to features in Billboard Magazine, REMIX Magazine, Women Who Rock Magazine, EQ Magazine, and Best Magazine, to name a few. Her single “Live Forever” debuted at #66 on the Billboard Global Dance Traxx chart and her single, “Degree of Love” was licensed (along with numerous additional Europa tracks) for the blockbuster dance game HELIX which debuted on the NIintendo Wii system in the USA and is scheduled for International versions on Wii, Playstation and Xbox. Her single, “Because I Love You” remixed by Madonna and Seal favorite Josh Harris is enjoyed 10 weeks on the Soundworks Record Pool Chart. Ilona’s music is a mainstay feature in Abercrombie and Fitch and Adidas stores, and on CW TV and Playboy TV. Known for her singles, her latest full album release, “EURO-CIZE, By ILONA EUROPA,” is currently available world- wide on CD and is available for download globally through every digital music store. Ilona Europa also holds an agency position as talent agent for the prestigious VOX agency in Los Angeles, California, and is a music producer and corespondent for CWG Music Magazine. Ilona is the only named vocalist ever to provide a professional loop library for SONY?s Acid Loop libraries – ILONA: Universal Female Vocal Toolkit, and she was called on by Sony to support their CineScore Film Library with her vocals.

Maximum Ink: What was it like when you first knew you wanted to be a musician?
Ilona Europa: I remember this day very well. I was maybe 7 years old. It was a very cold winter early morning. My father woke me up for school and the radio played one song after another that I loved. I closed my eyes and saw myself on the stage singing with all the singers,  I was listening too. 15 years later I was singing with them professionally in many shows and tours. I believe in the power of visualization of your dreams and always say - what is important is not the goal but the journey to get there. Of course I was studying music ‘till I was 23 and finished the Music Academy with a Bachelor’s degree in vocals. I also won many talent festivals and toured the world singing with bands and orchestras.

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Droids Attack Vs. Imperial Battlesnake

Imperial Battlesnake


by Andrew Frey
August 2008

Firmly seizing upon the bombastic hammer of thundering metal, comes Imperial Battlesnake. This Chicago-land experience consists of King James and his aggressive drum beating, Doom Wop Costanza hopping up the explosive bass playing with intestinal fortitude, Greazy Dave Reece augmenting the relentless guitar killing with powerful staring and tongue tornados, Ronnie James Theo exemplifying skin-scaring guitar riffing with quicksilver solos, and Wes Nile spewing forth a mouth-warping vocal rampage while sporting a Napoleon Complex. 

With so many colorful characters to choose from, one can hardly go wrong! Recently I touched base with the Imperial Battlesnake troupe for a quick e-interview.

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In This Moment

In This Moment


by Chris Fox
November 2008

After the recent release of their new album, “The Dream” on September 30, IN THIS MOMENT find themselves on tour. Somewhat familiar with Wisconsin, after hitting the stage hard for Band Camp ’07, they have returned, opening for Five Finger Death Punch.

The band has gone through a lot of sound adjustments in their four years together and have developed what Chris Howorth (guitarist) defines as “melodic rock and roll with a little bit of heavy metal.”  The new album concentrates more on song development rather than the almighty riff.  Maria Brink’s (vocalist) screams are less apparent than their previous release, but the band still manages to stay heavy with melody.  Howorth and Jesse Landry (bassist) account their changing sound to the diverse musical choices of the group. Howorth is the appointed “metal guy,” but they account everything from Kiss and Pantera to Ratt and Def Leppard as influences.

Each band member seems to have their own preferences as to which of their songs was the favorite, but their live favorite was a resounding, “Daddy’s Fallen Angel.” Landry explained that it was one of their heaviest songs in the set list and really seemed to click with the more rambunctious crowds. The live show seemed to be their favorite part of the whole lifestyle, and even though budgets are tight these guys plan to continue doing what they love.

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