Country: United States
History: 1985 – 1994
Style: Thrash Metal
Although they only released one album, the career of this metal band from Westchester, New York, lasted nearly ten years.
The guitarists Rena Sands and Marlene Apuzzo met in 1985 to form the nucleus of Meanstreak, which would be complemented by Bettina France at the micro, Lisa Diane Pace on bass and Keyser on drums, replacing a drummer that was just passing through.
They Initially started in a Vixen-style, but changed to a more thrasher actitude, both musically and in terms of aesthetics.
After performing in several gigs, they were called to participate in the compilation “L’Amour Rocks” with the song “Lost Stranger” along with bands that, as them, had begun their careers at the club “L ‘Amour” in Brooklyn.
Mercenary Records, responsible for this compilation, ended recruiting the band group to release its first album in 1988, “Roadkill”. It was recorded in nine days, with the production of ex-Raven Rob ‘Wack’ Hunter.
The thrashy paths that Meanstrek seemed to head (which had already shown off in the final cut “The Congregation”) were not liked by Diane, who preferred a more commercial music. So she left the formation to let Devon Yael to come in, who dominated the double bass drum.
The album received good reviews in the specialized press, and thanks to it Meanstreak shared the stage with Flotsam and Jetsam, Motörhead, Manowar, Nuclear Assault, MOD, Anthrax and Overkill.
The album did not receive sufficient promotion so Meanstreak decided to cut with Mercenary and his record label in Europe, Music For Nations.
When the tour of “Roadkill” finished, and still without a contract, they began recording new material. Songs such as “Giant Speaks” and “The Other Side,” more thrashers than his previous album, never saw the light. Neither the contact with Debbie Abono, Violence and Forbidden band manager, succeeded to revive a band that gradually disappeared from a saturated scene.
But when it seemed that everything was over, Meanstreak came again to the fore in 1993 with a four track demo produced by Mike Portnoy of Dream Theater, husband of Marlene Apuzzo, who changed from guitar to bass following Lisa’s departure.
The demo was called “The Dark Gift” , and was a big change in the sound of Meanstreak which disappointed the fans who expected something more furious, faster, thrashy. What they found was a compendium of rock and ballads, as Bettina was tired to screaming and wanted to “mature musically.” This shift towards almost the grunge sound can also be understood as an attempt to get a record deal.
Marlene is not only the only one married to a Dream Theater musician. Rena is married to John Petrucci and Lisa toJohn Myung. This relationship led Meanstreak to support Dream Theater three times in the early 90s.
His last performance was on TV, in a program called “Girl’s Night Out.” Yael continues playing in My Ruin.
Bettina France – Vocals
Marlene Apuzzo – Guitar
Rena Sands – Guitar
Lisa Pace – Bass
Yael Devan – Drums
Diane Keyser – Drums
Irene – Bass
Zoe – Drums
Sylvia – Keyboards
Jennifer – Bass
Charisse – Bass
1988, “Roadkill” (LP)
1989, “The Other Side” (Demo)
1992, “The Dark Gift” (Demo)
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