Ray Van Horn, Jr. is a veteran entertainment journalist whose writing and live photography has been featured in Blabbermouth.net, Dee Snider’s House of Hair Online, Fangoria.com, Horror News.net, About.com Heavy Metal, MetalManiacs, New Noise, Music Dish, AMP, Hails & Horns, Unrestrained,Noisecreep, Impose, Pit, The Big Takeover.com, Rough Edge.com, Pitriff and others. His blog The Metal Minute won a “Best Personal Blog” award in 2009 from Metal Hammer magazine and he wrote and produced his own hard rock e-zine, Retaliate.

He has contributed essays to UK author Neil Daniels’ Iron Maiden and ZZ Top biographies. Ray’s fiction has been published in various periodicals and anthologies, including his flash fiction piece “Off the Record” for Akashic Books’ “Mondays Are Murder” noir series. His recent short stories “Before the Ball” and “Widow” were featured in subsequent editions of Alex S. Johnson’s Axes of Evil anthologies. Ray wrote serialized original superhero fiction for Cyber Age Adventures and five of those stories appear in the anthology Playing Solitaire. He was the winner of Quantum Muse’s fiction contest in 1999.

Ray is a former NHL game analyst for The Hockey Nut and one-time host of the forum “Comic Books” at ReadWave. He has done beat reporting, photography and lifestyle articles for Metromix, an affiliate of The Baltimore Sun, Carroll Magazine, The Northern News and The Emmitsburg Dispatch.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Sunday Triple Play - 6/8/14

Welcome back to another Sunday Triple Play!

I've been heavily spinning Depeche Mode's catalog this week since one, they're a favorite of mine and two, my son's taken a keen interest in them.  Unfortunately, I have to skip past some of the more sexual-laden Depeche Mode songs while my son's present, so let's kick up their sultry classic "Stripped" from Black Celebration while my little man sleeps.

Killing Joke's another band close to my heart.  I've twice interviewed Jaz Coleman and both times were remarkable moments for me, as the man is hardly short of words.  The first time was over the phone and even overseas, he generously kept pushing long past our allotment.  The second time was in-person at Union Transfer in Philadelphia and we'd had a very engaging chat, which prompted Jaz to invite me to hang out backstage after we were through.  Then he humbled me by showing me his personal writings that have yet to be published.  An amazing night I'll never forget, and it's such a gift the original lineup pulled back together and released two devastating albums in a row, Absolute Dissent and MMXII.  I could pull one of Killing Joke's numerous heavies, but their gorgeous alt-pop tune "In Cythera" from MMXII seems appropriate this time around.

Finally is the mighty Judas Priest, who are set to release their new slab Redeemer of Souls in July.  What I've heard so far of the album is back-to-basics, straightforward metal instead of the adventurous and experimental Nostradamus, which fell upon many deaf ears.  Because seldom few Priest fans mention "Hot Rockin' " from Point of Entry as a favorite cut, I'll lead the charge.  The video is a laugh a minute, but the riffs and groove are undeniably badass.

Depeche Mode - "Stripped"

Killing Joke - "In Cythera"

Judas Priest - "Hot Rockin' "

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