HELIX to release 'Old School' in 2019 to feature songs from late guitarist Paul Hackman
Helix lead singer Brian Vollmer posted the following on his Facbook page: Well, it's like the songs says, "One thing leads to another..." Been going through all the 2", 1/2", 1/4" tape, and cassettes that I've had stored here for years. Found an album's worth of songs (most of which were written by Paul and myself) plus a few other gems and voila! I have a new Helix album. I'll be working with Daryl and the guys over the winter to put it together. Three of the songs were recorded but never released: Your Turn to Cry/Games Mother Never Taught You/ and Tie Me Down. These were done at River Audio in Fort Erie during the recording of Back For Another Taste. I took the tapes to Goderich on Monday to Seigfried Meier's studio in the hopes that he could play them on one of his many 2" machines. No such luck...They all have to be thermally baked, which take 48 hours for each reel (they can't all be done at once). But!----it's cheaper than re-recording them and Paul is playing on the tracks. That's the biggest reason I wanted to do this. Paul had a definite style when he played and wrote. He sounded like no one else. His influences came mostly from melodic hard rock/heavy metal bands: Deep Purple, Def Lepard, Journey, AC/DC, and ZZ Top (tell me that group didn't influence "Heavy Metal Cowboys") among many others. He was able to soak up those influences and then spit them back out sounding like Helix. These unreleased songs are a prime example of that: Your Turn to Cry, Coming Back with Bigger Guns, and Pretty Poison.
Some of the other songs on the album I wrote with other writers: Cheers was written by myself and Bob Halligan. Halligan also wrote Rock You (I wrote the verse lyrics but was never credited), Deep Cuts the Knife w/Paul, and Some Heads are Gonna Roll and Take These Chains by Judas Priest. and the Number 1 Billboard Hit "Don't Close Your Eyes" released by KIX from the album "Blow Your Fuse." When I wrote Cheers with Bob he was living down in Brooklyn in a ramshackle apartment where he slept on a mattress on the floor. During the day he would busk to survive. We originally recorded the song on an old out-of-tune upright piano, which actually enhanced the song (in my opinion). I don't have a version of that recording, although Daryl has told me he does. I'll have to get it from him. Haven't decided yet if we'll use any of the versions we have or just re-record the song. If Tears Could Talk was written by the band at our old practice hall on Breiphupt Street in Kitchener. Lastlly, "Tie Me Down" was written by Anthony Vandenburg at Exploding Door Studios in Toronto. Anthony had named it that when he tried to fix a door at the studios by filling it with foam. Well, he put too much in the door and-guess what?-it exploded...lol. The album will be called "OLD SCHOOL". Expect a release next spring. The album will be dedicated to Paul Hackman and is guaranteed to be special.