Years After a 90s Hit + Accident, Steelheart Returns

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Steelheart’s Miljenko Matijevic (via the band’s Facebook page)

In the midst of so-called “hair bands” in the early ’90s, Steelheart released their 1990 self-titled debut album and thanks to the crossover single “I’ll Never Let You Go” (which reached #23 on the Hot 100), the group earned strong sales and a solid following.

Their 1992 follow-up, Tangled In Reins, got positive reviews from the rock press, but didn’t have a radio hit and fickle U.S. audiences led to lukewarm sales.

All the while, the band continued to flourish in Asia. However, in the midst of promoting the album on Halloween night, 1992, an improperly secured lighting truss hit frontman Miljenko Matijevic on the head, breaking his nose, cheekbone, jaw, and twisted his spine. Matijevic was rushed to a hospital and Steelheart, for all intents and purposes, ended that night.

Watch “I’ll Never Let You Go” (with over 18 million views on YouTube)

Undeterred, Matijevic formed a new version of Steelheart four years later, with Kenny Kanowski (guitars), Vincent Mele (bass), and Alex Makarovich (drums) to record and release a third album, Wait. The record featured the song “We All Die Young,” later included as a re-recorded version in the movie Rock Star, with Matijevic providing the singing voice for Mark Wahlberg’s character. The movie soundtrack was performed by Matijevic (and Jeff Scott Soto) on vocals along with Zakk Wylde (Ozzy Osbourne’s once-and-current guitarist), Jeff Pilson (Dokken, Foreigner), and Jason Bonham.

Steelheart has returned once again. Through Worlds Of Stardust, arrived in September 2017, via Frontiers Music Srl. Fans of the band’s earlier albums will hear Matijevic’s powerful pipes back in action.

Listen to the album’s first release, “Got Me Runnin'”

Besides lead vocals, Matijevic plays various guitars on the album. The other musicians are Uros Raskovski (guitars); bass: James “Rev” Jones, Sigve Sjursen, Jesse Stern; drums: Mike Humbert, Rand Cooke; piano: Daniel Fouché, Ed Roth. Strings are performed by Stockholm Strings.

And on December 7, 2018, the label will release Rock’n Milan, a live album and long-form video of the band’s performance at 2017’s Frontiers Rock Festival IV in Milan, Italy. The concert marked the final performance of Steelheart guitarist Kenny Kanowski, who died several months later.

Watch “My Dirty Girl” from the new live collection

Steelheart had several concerts scheduled this fall.

Related: 100s of classic rock tour listings


Best Classic Bands Staff

2 Comments so far

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  1. jennifer
    #1 jennifer 22 July, 2017, 12:57

    LOVIN the new STEELHEART! Just played in Detroit w/ CIRCLE THE CROWN, Heard Both were Bad-Ass as ever! Bring It To Baltimore Guys!!

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    • Cathy
      Cathy 23 July, 2017, 00:02

      I saw them last night in Chesterfield, MI and even got a chance to dance with Miljenko Matijevic arm and arm during his encore song, Stand Up and Shout! Great performance as always!! I love Steelheart

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