rockford illinois entertainment guide
Date: 03/15/2006
Jackyl - Southern Boogie Chainsaw Tears Up Rockford
by Gary Hill

Lots of bands have things that have become their trademark - Judas Priest has the Harley Davidson, Ted Nugent has his loincloth and Jackyl has their chainsaw. They got associated with that implement of deconstruction with the song "The Lumberjack" on their self-titled debut that includes what is probably the only chainsaw solo in rock history. They will be hitting Rockford, chainsaw and all, on April 6th at Elixur.

While they got lumped into the "hair metal" genre at the time, Jackyl's sound is actually more of a rough around the edges, crunchy groove with a solid helping of Southern rock. It's a tasty sonic stew, and sure to please the Rockford area rockers.  Coming out of Georgia in the early '90's the band created their sound out of a love of such artists as Lynyrd Skynyrd and AC/DC.  By '92 they had released that debut, which included not only the aforementioned trademark hit, but also such chart toppers as "Down on Me" and "When Will It Rain."

Before their next album the band toured with Ted Nugent first, and then Nugent's band Damn Yankees and Slaughter. That follow up was 1994's Push Comes To Shove. Over the years they have cut several more albums - Night of the Living Dead (a live album from '96), Cut The Crap (1997), Stayin' Alive (1998), Relentless (2002) and Live at The Full Throttle Saloon (2004). Of those, Relentless is probably of most interest as the group managed to co-write some of the songs for the disc with one of their musical heroes Brian Johnson (of AC/DC).

Although in the short run it was a help, the "hair metal" label has been a bit of a problem for the band, causing them to be lumped into a style that quickly wore out its welcome. This has made it hard for them to get the attention they deserve. It's a tribute to both their perseverance and the power of the group's musical talents that many have seen past that branding to get to know the real band. That's why they have managed to garner and maintain a strong and loyal fan base despite little help from the mainstream media.

Another aspect that has attributed to their following is their energetic live show. The truth is, all of us in the Rockford area have the chance now to see that show in person right here in our hometown. Yes, the chain saw will be there. So, will some strong hard rocking boogie with a Southern tinge. For more information on the band, be sure to check out their official site at The show is sure to rock. The only question is, will you be there or regret it later?

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