MEANSTREAK: Roadkill [tape Cassette 1988 Music For Nations] New York USA Female Power, classic Heavy Metal. 3 members are married to Dream Theater band members. Check audio (whole album) + video

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Medieval Death LP and free DVD + Mordicus “Rights ‘n Trials” LP. Official videos, audio, info.

Rena Sands (Guitar) is married to John Petrucci, Marlene Apuzzo (Guitar) is married to Mike Portnoy, and Lisa Martens Pace (Bass ) is married to John Myung, all of them currently in (or ex) Dream Theater.

Country: USA
Location: Westchester, New York
Formed: 1985
Style (s): Power Metal, Thrash Metal

Label: Music For Nations – TMFN 89
Format: Cassette
Country: UK
Released: 1988
Genre: Rock
Style: Heavy Metal

Line-up :
Bettina France – Vocals
Marlene Apuzzo – Guitar
Rena Sands – Guitar
Lisa Martens Pace – Bass
Diane Keyser – Drums

1. Roadkill 02:52
2. Searching Forever 03:05
3. Snake Pit 04:08
4. Nostradamus 04:22
5. It Seems To Me 05:04
6. Lost Stranger 02:40
7. The Warning 03:02
8. The Congregation 06:56


Marlene Apuzzo or Marlene Portnoy

American guitarist. She’s married to Mike Portnoy.

MEANSTREAK fan wickedwitch_13 from Quillacollo, Cochabamba Bolivia

SAMPLES: https://music.apple.com/gb/album/roadkill/447182609


Stock pictures, the actual tape on sale, is in much better condition:

Stock pictures, the actual tape on sale, is in much better condition:

Stock pictures, the actual tape on sale, is in much better condition:

Stock pictures, the actual tape on sale, is in much better condition:

Stock pictures, the actual tape on sale, is in much better condition:

Stock pictures, the actual tape on sale, is in much better condition:

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An intriguing little footnote – 85%

On the surface, “”Roadkill”” could so easily be another entry in the seemingly never-ending list of American thrash albums that made a bit of an impression before seeing the band go nowhere. After all, Meanstreak disbanded after this album and a bit more. Of course, that only the surface. As with so much in this world, it what you don’t see at first that quite interesting.

Firstly, all the members of Meanstreak were women. In this day and age, that perhaps not so surprising, with no end of women fronting metal acts and plodding away on keyboards behind them. In terms of 80s thrash, though, it a point of reasonable difference, as female singers or musicians tended to be used more as gimmicks than as legitimate musicians or singers at the time (plus ca change, I’m sure some of you are thinking right now). The key difference here, though, is that these girls were actually talented at what they did, rather than simply being thrown together because they could bash out a few riffs and didn’t look too bad in a pair of tight jeans.

The second interesting point – and for me, at least, the reason I hunted this album out in the first place – is that three of these girls went on to marry members of Dream Theater. Indeed, Meanstreak apparently supported Dream Theater way back when, which I’m sure would have made for quite an interesting concert experience for fans of either straight-up thrash or prog. It quite an unusual experience to be able to hear both halves of a musical marriage – and since I have the deepest respect for the husbands in these partnerships, I had to at least give the wives a listen.

So what the album itself like? Well, as I said earlier, it straight-up thrash metal with a good helping of melody and occasional (as another reviewer has suggested) NWOBHM influences. In short, every track has moments of being catchy as hell, and the overwhelming majority of the riffs are nicely-crafted ones. Listen for “”Snake Pit””, which begins with that memorable melody that every single film uses when the action is taking place anywhere from about Egypt to Bangladesh.

The only real drawback is that the songs are all (with the exception of “”Congregation””, which becomes ever so slightly an NWOBHM mini-epic) very short, generally around the 3-minute mark. On the one hand, this means nothing on this disc outstays its welcome, which is something of a lost art these days. Of course, on the other hand, with tracks this catchy, it a real shame that we only have about 30 minutes of music to enjoy.

This is, I’m told, one of the rare gems of the 1980s. I can safely add my voice to those calling it that – if you find it, get your hands on it.

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Meanstreak – Roadkill – 85%

I never expected to ever actually hear this album, as it is incredibly difficult to find.

When I did get a hold of a copy, I wasn’t expecting too much as I popped in the disc. But I underestimated this band. It a shame their career was so short-lived, they had a very fun blend of thrash instrumentation and power vocals, creating some respectable heavy metal.

Roadkill is quite an enjoyable listen. Nothing absolutely stunning, but the riffs are very catchy and Bettina voice is very powerful and clear. The following tracks are the better ones on the album.

The title track, Roadkill, kicks off the album and begins with a nice drum fill, followed by a catchy, thrashy riff. The song is appropriately short, so it doesn’t get repetitious.

Snake Pit is a very cool song, Bettina really shows off her voice here and the main riff is based off of the catchy and familiar “”snake charming”” tune. This song will get stuck in your head pretty quickly, but you won’t want it to leave.

Searching Forever and Nostradamus both really remind me of Iron Maiden, with the familiar “”galloping pace”” on top of Bettina almost operatic, powerful vocals.

The Congregation is the longest track on the album by far, just short of seven minutes. The instrumentation is also much more complex in this song than in the other tracks overall, and it probably the strongest track on the album.

Speaking of length, that probably the only REAL problem with this album. It too short, clocking in at a mere 32 minutes in length. But then, I’m a big fan of old school prog and prog metal alike, so an album length like 32 minutes jumps out at me even more.

To conclude, if you see this album ANYWHERE, grab it immediately. Not only is it a solid listen, it also extremely rare. Supposedly a very sought-after album for eighties metal enthusiasts all over the world.
Total playing time 32:09

GROUP HISTORY
Meanstreak was probably the first all-girl thrash-metal band ever. Listening to this group for the first time shocks us and how good these girls are! Their style is a mix between thrash and heavy metal. Guitarists Marlene Apuzzo and Rena Sands founded Meanstreak in 1985 in New York. Bettina France, Lisa Pace and Diane Keyser later joined them as singers, bassists and drummers. They started playing in some clubs around New York and gained their first successes. In 1988, they recorded their first and only album “Roadkill”. Maybe the sound could be better, but those eight songs were recorded over the weekend, so given the circumstances, the album is great! There are really thrash songs like “Roadkill” (it’s great !!) and “Nostradamus” and others in a more typically heavy metal style, such as “Lost Stranger”, which was also included on the compilation CD with other bands. This promotional album had a very good response in the USA but also in Europe.After a while, Diane Keyser left the band because she wanted to force the band into a softer style. But they soon found a new drummer named Yael Devon. Meanstreak played as a backing band with the support of such groups as Manowar, Overkill, Motörhead, Anthrax and Dream Theater … They started writing new material for their next album, which was to be produced again by Perialas and which was to appear under the title “The Other Side”, but it was never completed for some reason and probably not released again.In 1992, they recorded a demo tape with Marlene behind the bass guitar, as Lisa left the band in the meantime. This tape was produced by Mike Portnoy and it was a huge surprise because they changed their style a bit. The songs on the demo were “The Dark Gift”, “Time Stands Still”, “Barracuda” (from Heart) and “Annie’s Back”. It is true that “The Dark Gift” still sounded like the original sound of their best songs, but the other three are already softer than those that were their best songs. They had previously recorded a pair of songs in 1989, “The Other Side” and “Giant Speaks”, and these were very difficult songs. They could have achieved great success with them, but unexpectedly the “grunge” reversed the music scene and after several changes in the group they ended their activities.Marlene, Rena and Lisa are still friends, it is a curiosity that Marlene married Mike Portnoy, Rena married John Petrucci and Lisa then bassist DREAM THEATER John Myung, three members of the great Dream Theater group.It’s a shame they didn’t record more records, but we believe in their future reunion one day, because Mike Portnoy said they would participate as the opening group of Dream Theater concerts.

Marlene Apuzzo with husband Mike Portnoy and children Melody and Max

Rena (Sands) Petrucci playing with their band “Reverend Jim”


 DISCOGRAPHY
MEANSTREAK – The Dark Gift Demo (1992)
Playlist:
1. The Dark Gift
2. Time stands still
3. Barracuda
4. Annie’s back
Recorded by:
Marlene Apuzzo – Guitar
Rena Sands – Guitar
Bettina France – Vocals
Lisa Pace – Bass
Yael Devan – Drums Produced by Mike Portnoy
MEANSTREAK – Roadkill
(1988) 

Playlist:
01. Roadkill
02. Searching Forever
03. Snake Pit
04. Nostradamus
05. It Seems To Me
06. Lost Stranger
07. The Warning
08. The Congregation 
:
Marlene Apuzzo – Guitar
Rena Sands – Guitar
Bettina France – Vocals
Lisa Pace – Bass
Diane Keyser – Drums
MEANSTREAK INTERVIEW
(METAL FORCES – September 1988)
In the last year or so, MEANSTREAK has become very popular due to various roles in one of the world’s most respected metal publications (METAL FORCES with a large participation in these awards). And whether or not you think that everything you did affected the release of the recorded material!It seems that the initial impulse was formed RIGHT thanks to a live MEANSTREAK presentation sweeping up and down clubs across the East Coast. That is a fact. MEANSTREAK is a mixture of intense Power Metal with a perfect rhythmic section “MAIDENesque” pedaling really well in front of the audience and wins even the most anxious matal fans (even some Thrash metalists).The same musical power is just as compelling on vinyl. After several hearings of their new debut album “Roadkill”, the “true creativity” of the band’s main creators is sure to catch on. Combining excellent written songs and excellent vocal melodies by Bettina France, this is a sign of something very important on the metal scene today.The LP “Roadkill” (introduced in METAL FORCES 27) will be released by Music For Nations in Europe at the time you read this, while the release on Mercenary Records for the States runs sluggishly. Despite the obvious “condemnation”, the band has already signed up for this label (Would you believe what can be signed today ?!), time will tell to say what a bright future awaits these five metal girls.I recently sat down with two members, singer Bettina France and guitarist Marlene Apuzzo, to get an idea of ​​their perspective on their just-released debut album. “We’re happy to finish recording,” Bettina said. “I think for the amount of time we spent recording the LP, it really worked out. Even the vocals came out the same way they were recorded. We didn’t have much time for them.” We did the whole album in a week, “Marlene says enthusiastically. “As long as it’s just a demo, Jo,” adds Bettina. But with more time to prepare the album, we can do a much better job. It was such a short-term affair and we didn’t have much time in the studio for everything. “You see,It’s a shame that the new drummer Yael Devan didn’t get to record the album. Yael joined the band after Diane Keyser left the drum post immediately after recording “Roadkill”. However, Yael is a much more solid drummer if you enjoy it live. I have a feeling that Yael would make the new album drumming more striking or possibly (due to her excellent use of a double pedal) a little more …. um … thrash. (?) “I just agree,” says Marlene. “We can play harder with Yael drumming now, even if we’re not really a thrash band.” “We can touch the thrash a little more than on the album,” adds Bettina. “But it’s more on the Heavy Metal side. Maybe we’ll get to the thrash audience as well. It’s going pretty well in front of them. It’s good because we want to impress everyone,What made Diana leave? “Diane was more of a commercial type of music,” says Marlene, “but it didn’t work well for the band. We wanted someone who was more into Heavy Metal. She wasn’t 100% happy with what we were doing and where we were going.”The direction MEANSTREAK does not want to go is to be sexual objects like the state of most female rockers (LITA FORD, LEE AARON, etc …). And I think I could deny that all MEANSTREAK members look great (which helps us in themselves), but they should be known for their musical abilities rather than just for their good looks. And I can’t blame them for that feeling, because their music is just as fun. So it’s music first explains Marlene: “We started wearing more sexy things to wear, body suits and fishnet stockings and no one paid attention to our music. We thought it was ridiculous. We want to be known for our music and not just because we have nice legs, you know? ” So you calmed the picture on purpose? “Well, it hurt my ass, but we’re trying to endure it … um … elongated skirts,” laughs Bettina. “Isn’t it that you don’t want them to be compared to the traditional whole-girl band THE RUNAWAYS, do you really want to create something much more important? “The only thing we really have in common with THE RUNAWAYS is that we’re all girls,” Bettina says, “We want to have our own image and stand on our own two feet. great pressure and their end. “One thing’s for sure, though, is that if the band sells well by breaking their beliefs, shifting the image of the “sex appeal” of their rock’n’rolls, and making an eye-catching video to increase MTV exposure, then it would most likely benefit them. Let’s face it – however, most male rockers don’t like it. This could almost certainly increase their record sales and popularity. Pretty tempting for such a change, isn’t it? “Music always comes first for us!” assures Marlene. “And that’s it. I want videos to be made, but the only reason I want video is to help more people get to our music to hear it and know who we are. But that’s not the most important thing. us right now. ” “The most important thing for us now is to release the album right,” adds Bettina.I think MEANSTREAK is proof of the last remark. After all, the band shared the same scenes as the thrash legends ANTHRAX and OVER KILL many times. And believe me, it’s not easy to please such a madhouse full of hungry threshers (moshers, firecrackers, skankers, scene conquerors … whatever) when the girls start (sorry that expression)! “Sometimes we were upstairs just because we’re girls.” Bettina sighs. “But we’re a pretty good opener for these bands. When the audience first saw us, it could get out of hand and they wanted to see the main band. But when we played our fast songs, we could play the show properly! Even “We are going for the right one, no matter what part of the metal audience we play as a front band.”

“People are so hung up on stickers too,” Bettina continues, “like thrash and glam, and poser and trasher. And so it shouldn’t be. There should also be more room for all the girl bands. We wish it all like we do. “We don’t have attitudes, it’s easy with us. We’ll be with everyone.”

Another thing I would like to add is that even MEANSTREAK lyrics are not only typical of sex, drugs and rock’n’roll slogans, that rockers portray almost every woman. Sure, there is an occasional heartbreaking song here and there, but most of their lyrics consist of deeper meanings. Maybe even darker meanings? “Our lyrics are really about the dark side,” says Bettina, “but hey, we live in darkness, not everything is seen through pink glasses. How I feel is that you have to go through the darkness to see the light.”

What about “Roadkill”? Isn’t that a song that has something to say about killing animals? “What I felt when I wrote it was basically about people’s reactions to the war,” says Bettina, “but it’s also about how people will drive down the highway and see a dead animal and say, ‘Yecchh, that it’s disgusting “but at dinner that night they have a nice juicy steak that looks” so great “and doesn’t think it’s about the same thing twice. It’s about whether people realize these things, then I think the world it would be a much better place and calmer. ”

As I came to the conclusion of this interview, I can only say that I believe that this article convinced you to check on these girls yourself. It’s easy to do, pick up their new album, “Roadkill,” and then … Wait a minute, let’s get to work, okay? MEANSTREAK definitely deserves my vote for the best girl band of all time! And maybe the most heavy girl band of all time !? “I hope so!” Bettina laughs. So so!

© 2003-2005 Metal Queens

Medieval Death LP and free DVD + Mordicus “Rights ‘n Trials” LP. Official videos, audio, info.

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