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Associate Professor of Philosophy Dr. Court Lewis and Associate Professor of History Matt Alschbach discuss the history and philosophy of your favorite rock and metal acts of the last 50+ years. A fun, insightful, and always illuminating look at an often misunderstood genre of music.
 
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show series
 
What a powerhouse trifecta of interviews this week! In our 2nd round of interviews from RockNpod 2021, Court and Matt interview Tora Tora guitarist Keith Douglas, Grammy award-winning producer and engineer Toby Wright, and legendary drummer Vinnie Appice (Black Sabbath, DIO, The Last in Line). First, we talk to lead guitarist Keith Douglas about hi…
 
On this episode of the Rock and Metal Profs, Court and Matt interview rock icon Pamela Des Barres. "Ms. Pamela" is a true renaissance woman. Throughout her impressive career she's been a groupie, musician, author, actress, soap star, and she was the inspiration for Kate Hudson’s character in “Almost Famous.” Her 1987 book "I'm with the Band: Confes…
 
Former KISS guitarist Vinnie Vincent burst onto the rock scene in 1983 when he was announced as Ace Frehley's replacement. With lightning-fast fret work coupled with a gift for songwriting, he wrote and performed some of KISS's most memorable songs of the early 1980s. Sadly, his tenure in KISS was short-lived -- he was kicked out of the band after …
 
On this episode of the Rock and Metal Profs, Matt and Court discuss artists and bands that may need to call it a career. The Profs grapple with beloved rock acts that for one reason or another simply cannot perform at their previous high level, as well as bands that contain few or no original members. Should a band like Quiet Riot continue with no …
 
Kansas have always been an enigmatic band -- Are they classic rock or prog rock? Are they Americana or a Christian band? Are they rock or pop? For this 6-piece band success came early, and as we saw so often in the 70s, that success led to tumult, substance abuse, excess and division. For founding members Kerry Livgren and Dave Hope, it meant turni…
 
On the 1-year anniversary of the Rock and Metal Profs, Court and Matt discuss the one-and-only Iron Maiden and their catalog from 1990 to the present. Everybody loves classic Iron Maiden from the 1980s, but what about their later work? The Profs discuss the challenges the band faced in the 90s with changing tastes in music, a changing industry, and…
 
On this episode of the the Rock and Metal Profs, Matt invites writer, editor and music aficionado Tommy Ellis on the program to discuss the best Rockumentaries! Tommy Ellis is best known for his work editing and producing NEWS4U, a regional music, arts and entertainment magazine serving parts of Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky. Tommy's love of music…
 
It was only a matter of time before the Profs went back to take a 2nd look at Ronnie James Dio, one of the greatest vocalists in the history of rock and metal. His iconic voice, brilliant song-writing, soaring harmonies and unique style and charisma on stage set him apart from everyone in the genre. Few attempted to emulate him, because it was near…
 
On this episode of The Rock and Metal Profs, Court and Matt take a close look at AC/DC during the Brian Johnson Era. After the tragic and untimely death of Bon Scott, the band was at a crossroads; "Highway to Hell" was a smash success, and their star was rising internationally. Without missing a beat, they brought in Brit vocalist and ex-Geordie fr…
 
Happy 25th episode! The profs take on gritty Australian rock pioneers AC/DC in the 1970s! When AC/DC formed in late-1973, they were an unlikely act to break big -- Australia was considered a backwater for the British and American music industry, the booming punk scene, and their loud, uncompromising sound wasn't exactly what record execs were looki…
 
On Episode 24 of the Rock and Metal Profs Matt and Court examine the band that started it all -- BLACK SABBATH! In the late-1960s John "Ossie" Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Bill Ward and Terence "Geezer" Butler created an entirely new sound and genre of music! It was a sound forged in the crucible of tragedy and steel factories -- Heavy Metal was born due …
 
Matt and Court discuss the guitar virtuosos of the 1980s. Those innovative players who revolutionized an entire genre of music, elevating the guitar to an art form. The Profs handle the obvious Guitar Gods - EVH, Randy Rhoads, Malmsteen, Vai, Gilbert, etc., but they also look at players who made their mark without the fanfare and popular support fr…
 
Professors Court and Matt examine Seattle metal pioneers Queensryche on this edition of the Rock and Metal Profs: The History and Philosophy of Rock and Metal. Queensryche exploded on the scene in 1982 with their 4-song EP, and the world of rock and metal was changed forever. A constantly evolving band, the quintet got better and better in the 80s …
 
Episode 21 -- Body Count -- When hardcore metal band Body Count hit the rock scene in 1990, there was a multitude of reactions. Many metal fans loved their fresh approach, social commentary and uncompromising attitude. Ice-T was already a rising star in the world of rap and hip-hop, but as front man of Body Count, he had a message for the masses. A…
 
Ep. 20 -- Bonus Episode: Interviews with Rush Aficionados! In this special bonus episode of the Rock and Metal Profs, Matt interviews long-time Rush experts Mr. Chris Christianson and Reynaldo Rojo. Matt has known Chris Christianson since 1986, and during that time no one has been a more devoted, diehard Rush fan than Chris. His knowledge of the ba…
 
RUSH, part III: The 90s and 2000s. Profs Matt and Court examine an often overlooked and undervalued era in Rush's later catalog. Dr. Lewis waxes philosophical and sings the praises of albums like Roll the Bones, Counterparts, Test for Echo, Vapor Trails, Snake and Arrows and Clockwork Angels. Despite immeasurable tragedy and the band's split in the…
 
Ep. 18 -- Interview with Rob De Luca of Spread Eagle, UFO, Sebastian Bach and Of Earth. Professors Matt and Court interview bassist Rob De Luca of Spread Eagle, UFO, Sebastian Bach and Of Earth. Most fans of rock and metal probably know Rob De Luca from his 12 year tenure in UFO, or from his work touring with Sebastian Bach. Mr. De Luca was graciou…
 
Episode 17: Spread Eagle -- in this 1st of two episodes, Profs Court and Matt profile NYC quartet Spread Eagle. The story of this gritty, talented and criminally under-rated band is a tale of hard work, determination, timing, tenacity and patience. A product of the changing hard-rock and metal scene in the early 90s, Spread Eagle were one of the ha…
 
RUSH pt. II: Professors Court and Matt examine Rush in the 1980s. Fans of Rush know that Neil Peart was one of the greatest percussionists and musicians in the history of popular music. However, some people may be unaware that Peart was also a brilliant lyricist and story-teller. His command of the English language, his ability to weave a yarn and …
 
Bonus Christmas Episode: Bad Albums that are Good -- Honorable Mention! Our "Bad albums that are actually good" episode was one of our most downloaded shows. What listeners didn't hear were Court and Matt's "honorable mention' albums, as we had to edit for time. Here is what you missed!
 
RUSH: The Profs take a deep dive and examine one of the greatest rock bands in history, RUSH. Over the course of 4 decades, this Canadian power trio built a global following by simply being better than everybody else in their respective fields. They did it through Geddy's bass and keyboard mastery, Alex's talented (and ridiculously under-appreciate…
 
Stryper: In episode 13 the Profs discuss the ground-breaking 1980s Christian metal band Stryper. Court and Matt tackle the band's early history, ministry, and how their message and music has evolved while staying true to their faith over the course of the past 40 years. The professors take a critical look at what it was like to be both Christian an…
 
Alice in Chains -- Court and Matt examine the history and philosophy of Seattle hard rock pioneers Alice in Chains and the seismic shift they created in the late-eighties as the rock and metal scene found a new epicenter in the Pacific Northwest. The Profs discuss whether or not AIC should be considered metal or grunge, or if it even matters. AIC's…
 
Bad albums that are actually good! After much deliberation and consideration, the Rock and Metal Profs offer up their short list of albums that were panned, disregarded, or discarded as substandard, but that are in reality good albums. This topic is sure to spark some controversy, but if it exposes rock fans to some overlooked gems, then we've done…
 
Coheed and Cambria - Episode 9 -- Professors Court and Matt discuss the changing face of the rock and metal culture and industry in the 90s and early 2000s, followed by a conversation about New York prog rockers Coheed and Cambria. The Profs give this powerhouse band their proper accolades, discussing the history and philosophy behind this great an…
 
Iron Maiden -- Episode 8 -- Professors Court and Matt discuss the origins and impact of British Heavy Metal monoliths Iron Maiden. From London clubs to global dominance, Maiden endured multiple line-up changes, personality conflicts, and even girlfriend problems in their formative years. Court and Matt attempt to tell the story of this incredible b…
 
KISS -- PART III -- On episode 7 of the Rock and Metal Profs Podcast, Court and Matt examine some of the most memorable and iconic songs from KISS's early catalog. The profs also discuss the role that nostalgia and subjectivity play in shaping our memories and perceptions about music through adulthood.…
 
KISS: The Early Years, Pt. II -- Court and Matt continue their discussion of the hottest band in the world, KISS! As we await the release of "KISS and Philosophy" (hitting bookshelves and Amazon in Oct. 2020), the Rock and Metal Profs examine the historical, philosophical, and cultural impact of KISS. This is part 2 in a 3-part podcast arc. We hope…
 
KISS: The Early Years, pt. 1 -- In this episode the professors discuss the Hottest Band in the World - KISS! Kiss in undeniably one of the most recognizable and influential rock bands in history. Court and Matt dig deep with the first episode in a 3-part series on the larger-than-life masked men. In this episode they examine the band's origins, inf…
 
Ronnie James Dio is considered by many to be one of the greatest vocalists in the history of heavy rock and metal. With a career spanning 53 years as vocalist of Elf, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, and DIO, he redefined the genre. Hosts Court and Matt pay homage to the legend and discuss Dio's historical contributions and philosophical approach to songwri…
 
UFO -- Professors Lewis and Alschbach take a close look at the history and philosophy of UFO, one of the most talented and underrated bands to emerge from the New Wave of British Heavy Metal in the 1970s. With an impressive catalog spanning 52 years and two dozen studio albums, UFO finally gets its proper accolades on the Rock and Metal Profs Podca…
 
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