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Brand Name: RED DISTRIBUTION, INC Mfg#: 00008066
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Genre: Popular Music
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2013 release, the debut album from the Rock supergroup featuring guitarist Richie Kotzen, bassist Billy Sheehan and drummer Mike Portnoy. While all three have Hard Rock and Progressive Rock backgrounds, The Winery Dogs are working towards a Classic Rock sound influenced by Led Zeppelin, Cream, Jimi Hendrix, Grand Funk Railroad and others.
|Audio CD Release Date:||July 23, 2013|
|Studio:||LOUD & PROUD RECORDS|
|Number Of Discs:||1|
|Average Customer Rating:|| based on 346 reviews|
|Average Customer Review: ( 346 customer reviews )
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
70 of 81 found the following review helpful:
Get drunk with these dogs! Jun 14, 2013
The Winery Dogs have made a really killer debut album that combines their awesome musical virtuosity with some intense rock grooves and powerful vocals. The band is a rock super group featuring guitar extraordinaire Richie Kotzen (solo and ex Mr Big), rock bass legend Billy Sheehan (Mr Big, Steve Vai), and power house drummer Mike Portnoy (ex Dream Theater). This project originally planned to have the immense talents of guitar player John Sykes but after that idea fell through this current lineup was settled on and they hit the studio to get the job done. The sound of the album is very much in a classic rock vein with lots of excellent solos and strong vocals from Kotzen who gives a Chris Cornell-like performance in both tone and style on these awesome tracks. The album sounds huge and is engineered well like most projects that Mike Portnoy is involved with. Highlights include the hard rocking opener "Elevate", the brilliant groove of "We Are One" that cracks into a massive chorus hook, the melodic ballad "You Saved Me", and the strong bonus track "Criminal" available on the Japanese import version. The Winery Dogs consistently show their amazing ability to shred while writing lots of big riffs and memorable choruses that rival the best in this style of music. This is definitely one of the strongest albums of the year and hopefully leads to an exciting tour. The Winery Dogs are highly recommended to fans of quality rock in the style of Mr Big and might also impress fans of bands such as Led Zeppelin, Cream, Lenny Kravitz, and Soundgarden.
24 of 26 found the following review helpful:
supergroups don't always produce great results but this one does Jul 25, 2013
Fantastic line up's or the term supergroups don't always produce great results but this one does. With Guitarist Richie Kotzen, Bassist Billy Sheehan and Drummer Mike Portnoy make one of the best 3 piece groups i have heard since Cream. They come right out with massive power but they are textured & melodic. This might be the first time that Richie Kotzen really get's to show what he can do as a guitar player & as far as his singing my first thought was wow he sounds a bit like Chris Cornell in some spots. With Billy Sheehan You know you have a monster no matter what he is on it's going to have monster grooves & great change up's. Now add Mike Portnoy & you have a drummer that can handle there speed & crazy change up's but still be powerful & beat the drums as hard as John Bonham.End result is you have a album with well thought out change up's,crushing monster grooves that has ton's of texture & melodic chorus lines & very original music.
35 of 41 found the following review helpful:
fantastic Jun 09, 2013
I am very biased. I have been a Ritchie Kotzen fan for 20 years. He had a stint with Mr. Big where he played with Sheehan as well after Paul Gilbert departed, but this is much better than that. It has big hooks and phenominal chops. There are the unison tapping licks that he and Billy do together ala Addicted to that Rush, but they aren't cheesy. I hope that this trio takes off. Most of Portnoy's side projects are good, but I don't think that they ever take off (perhaps Adrenalin mob is an exception). While you wait for this to come out in America (July, I think), check out his last deal that he did with Steve Morse. It was fantastic. I don't think anyone bought it though.
There are 3 videos out of songs from this CD already on YouTube. Check them out. That will get you by until the release date.
11 of 12 found the following review helpful:
Great trio! Jul 27, 2013
Straight up rock and roll so don't be expecting the prog you're used to getting from Portnoy. Songs are well-written and each musician is blended nicely in the mix. A must buy!
21 of 26 found the following review helpful:
These guys were born to make music together Jul 27, 2013
By Brian H. Galloway
My initial interest in The Winery Dogs was due to Mike Portnoy's involvement. Ever since I first heard him on Neal Morse's post-Spock's Beard solo albums, he's become one of my favorite drummers, and I've been slowly trying to acquire his complete discography (an incredibly daunting task). I was well aware of Billy Sheehan's reputation as a bass player, as well, but Richie Kotzen was a complete blank slate to me. I'd heard his name, but was unfamiliar with his work. Imagine my surprise when, upon my first listen (the band's "Elevate" single on YouTube), it wasn't Portnoy that blew me away, but Kotzen.
This is not to take anything away from Portnoy or Sheehan. Portnoy's a monster on the drums, and I don't think I've ever heard a bad performance from him. Whether it's the prog of Neal Morse or Transatlantic, the prog-metal of Dream Theater, the hard rock of Adrenaline Mob, or the pop/rock of Flying Colors, he slides effortlessly from genre to genre and always seems to know exactly what to bring to each song. This album is no exception.
Sheehan, as I've learned, is a "lead bass player." To be honest, I had no idea what that meant until I listened to the single I mentioned previously. I'm not that familiar with Mr. Big, but I'd always imagined them as being more of a pop/rock band. Continuing in the same vein as the single, Sheehan is a madman on the bass, sometimes mimicking the melodies from Kotzen's guitar, sometimes being in lockstep with Portnoy's drumming, and sometimes just doing his own bizarre thing. He never lets up. This might sound like it would be distracting, but it's not. Like Portnoy, he doesn't do anything that detracts from the song itself. Needless to say, based on his performance here, I may need to check out Mr. Big's discography and see what I've been missing.
As for Kotzen, I had no idea what to expect. All mentions of him I'd come across in various articles or reviews referred to his guitar playing, but there he was in the "Elevate" video performing lead vocals as well, sounding a little like Chris Cornell at times but sounding mostly like a guy with a great voice that is completely comfortable with his talents on vocals and guitar and doesn't feel like he's got anything to prove. Considering his bandmates here, that's pretty amazing. It's not cockiness but assuredness, and it brings a certain level of laid-back calm to the surface of these songs that have so much going on instrumentally. It sounds like these guys were born to make music together.
After obtaining a pre-release copy for purposes of this review, I'm pleased to say that the pre-order I placed here on Amazon after hearing "Elevate" stands. I'm giving these guys my money. This entire album is full of glorious goodness. There are a few ballads, some mid-tempo stuff, and several flat-out rockers. And they're all brilliant. Although the songs sometimes sounds like a combination of '70s hard rock and '90s grunge, the overall sound is both modern and timeless.
In short, this is fantastic rock and roll. There's nothing trendy, hipsterish, or pretentious on here, just three insanely talented guys that love rock music. A lot of bands make the claim of getting back to the basics, but few of them do it as well as The Winery Dogs.
I originally posted this review on spacecityrock.com.
See all 346 customer reviews on Amazon.com
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