GUNS N' ROSES keyboardist Dizzy Reed says that the band is in the process of putting the finishing touches on new music that will "hopefully" be released "really soon."
The last GUNS N' ROSES album, "Chinese Democracy", came out in 2008 and ended a 17-year gap between collections of all-new material.
Singer Axl Rose, Reed and other members of the current lineup have hinted at material recorded during the "Chinese Democracy" sessions that has yet to surface.
Speaking to VH1 Radio Network's Dave Basner earlier this week, Reed said: "There's a lot of material that's already done and I think it's in the process of being finished and eventually we'll pick out which songs need to come out with which other songs. So that's in the works. Hopefully it will be out really soon."
GUNS N' ROSES guitarist DJ Ashba said in a recent talk with Legendary Rock Interviews that the band has both recording and touring plans in 2015. He revealed, "We are planning on doing quite a bit of touring this coming year. The focus is getting in a studio and putting together what we all feel is the best GUNS N' ROSES record. Lack of material is not an issue. We have tons of stuff."
Ashba added. "Axl has two full albums that he has recorded. He has played me a bunch of songs off of that that are incredible! I can't wait to get in and kind of dive into those as well. I've written tons of songs and demoed up a bunch of stuff. I think it is just a matter of getting in and sifting through the piles of material."
Reed told The Pulse Of Radio that there is both older and newer material lurking around. "We've all been at it," he said. "We've all been, you know, handing files back and forth to one another in various combinations of different people, but also there is quite a bit of material that still needs to be finished and needs to be released. And so one or both of those things is gonna happen."
Rose is the only original member of GUNS N' ROSES still in the current lineup, which has toured intermittently since 2006 and played its second Las Vegas residency earlier this year.
Part two of a new video of MERCYFUL FATE guitarists Hank Shermann and Michael Denner playing the band's classic "Don't Break The Oath" album to celebrate the LP's 30th anniversary can be seen below.
Says Shermann: "With the overwhelming feedback from the 'Melissa' 30-year anniversary video [which was released last year], it was obvious that [we] were going to do the same event with 'Don't Break The Oath'.
"We think the fans like to see how it's really played by the original guitar players, so we tuned and tweaked the guitars and amps as we did back in 1984. This is as close as you'll get it."
Highlights of all songs were performed live with two guitars and two amps.
Denner and Shermann recently joined forces in a new project called DENNER/SHERMANN.
Said Shermann: "Besides working with our own respective bands, SHERMANN TANK and DENNERS TRICKBAG, we now have the opportunity to extend the collaboration we started with MERCYFUL FATE in the early '80s."
Added Michael: "Yeah, we're super excited to play together again and get the twin guitars into action once more."
MERCYFUL FATE's last studio album, "9", was released in 1999.
MERCYFUL FATE will be remembered for its unquestionable mark on the history of metal with its innovative sound, complex arrangements, memorable melody, and its influence on bands that later took the genre to new heights.
In 1998, METALLICA paid tribute to MERCYFUL FATE by recording a medley of classic MERCYFUL FATE songs on the album "Garage Inc." Entitled "Mercyful Fate", the medley included parts from "Satan's Fall", "Curse of the Pharaohs", "A Corpse Without Soul", "Into the Coven" and "Evil".
Lars Ulrich of METALLICA (a fellow Dane) played drums on a new version of MERCYFUL FATE's "Return of the Vampire" on the "In the Shadows" album, which came out in 1993.
The official video for "Scare Force One", the title track of the seventh studio album from Finnish heavy metal monsters LORDI, can be seen below. The CD will be released on November 3 via AFM.
"Scare Force One" track listing:
01. SCG7: Arm Your Doors And Cross Check
02. Scare Force One
03. How To Slice A Whore
04. Hell Sent In The Clowns
05. House Of Ghosts
06. Monster Is My Name
07. Cadaver Lover
08. Amen's Lament To Ra II
09. Nailed By The Hammer Of Frankenstein
10. The United Rocking Dead
11. She's A Demon
12. Hella's Kitchen
13. Sir, Mr. Presideath, Sir
The first single from the CD, "Nailed By The Hammer Of Frankenstein", can be streamed below.
To celebrate the release of the new album, LORDI will play one of its infrequent domestic shows — the record-release party is set for November 1 at The Circus in Helsinki.
According to LORDI mainman Mr. Lordi, the material on "Scare Force One" is more experimental than before. It's not a theme or concept record, per se, but there is a red thread that runs through all the songs.
Says the singer: "The overall sound of the band is more modern this time, and we've tried out some new tricks here and there. The basic LORDI building blocks are still present however, so there's no shortage of melodic hooks in the songs. The first single, 'Nailed By The Hammer Of Frankenstein', is pretty representative of where the band is right now."
In addition to its sound, the band has also tweaked its outward appearance. The new costumes, designed and built by Mr. Lordi as always, will be debuted at the record release show.
"I wanted to make the band's colour scheme more unified than it has been and I think it worked out quite nicely," Mr. Lordi says. "Hella and Mana have probably changed the most, and with the trip to a hair salon for a new dye job, they're looking great."
LORDI's last two albums were made in Nashville under the watchful eye of legendary producer Michael Wagener (SKID ROW, WARRANT). But this time the band wanted to do it differently and recorded the album with veteran Finnish producer Mikko Karmila.
"We really wanted to make this record in Finland, with a Finnish producer," Mr. Lordi. "We finally managed to get Mikko Karmila to work with us, which is great. He has come up as a potential producer for the band on several previous occasions but now, we've really nailed it. We've definitely had no reason to regret this decision so far and are extremely happy with the album."
LORDI's last CD, "To Beast Or Not To Beast", was released on March 1, 2013 in Europe (excluding Finland) via AFM Records. The CD was made available in North America on March 19, 2013 through The End Records.
A public memorial for legendary heavy metal singer Ronnie James Dio (DIO, HEAVEN & HELL, BLACK SABBATH, RAINBOW) will be held on the fifth anniversary of his death at his gravesite at Forest Lawn - Hollywood Hills cemetery in Los Angeles. His wife and manager Wendy Dio tells the "Maximum Threshold" radio show: "Next year, the 16th of May will be five years [since] Ronnie's passing, so we are inviting all the fans to come from all over the world. We're gonna do a big public memorial up at Forest lawn in the Hollywood Hills. And we'll have bands playing. It will be a celebration of Ronnie's life. And the night before, we're gonna do celebrity bowling. And we're gonna do a 'ride for Ronnie' with motorcycles on the Sunday, which is on the 17th, and ending up with a barbecue in the park."
Wendy also revealed that the fifth annual Ronnie James Dio Stand Up And Shout Cancer Fund awards gala will probably be held in October 2015. She added: "We're raising money all the time for cancer. And we've raised over a million dollars, actually, since Ronnie passed, and we've given M.D. Anderson [Cancer Center in Houston, Texas] over $200,000, with Dr. Ajani — he was Ronnie's doctor, actually, and he's a cancer specialist for stomach cancer. And we've also given T.J. Martell [Foundation] over $400,000 and that goes to gastric cancer, stomach cancer, prostate and colon cancers, and it goes to the Vanderbilt research center in Nashville. So we've been really busy raising money and giving money away to people, which is what we wanna do. We're trying to also make sure that men get checked. Women are really good — they usually go to the doctors and get checked — men, you have to drag them there, so we're trying to make sure that they get checked. Early detection saves lives, and they should get checked."
According to Wendy, "Ronnie was a very charitable person, and we used to do a lot of things when Ronnie was alive. And I just have done more since he passed, because I wanted to make something of his passing — something positive to come out of it — and that's how I feel. I feel that life has been good to me, and it's always good to give back and raise money for different causes, and my causes are animals, cancer and veterans."
Dio was renowned throughout the world as one of the greatest and most influential vocalists in heavy metal history. The singer, who was recording and touring with SABBATH offshoot HEAVEN & HELL prior to his illness, was diagnosed with stomach cancer in late 2009. He underwent chemotherapy and made what is now his final public appearance in April 2010 at the Revolver Golden Gods Awards in Los Angeles.
A free public memorial service was held on May 30, 2010 at Forest Lawn - Hollywood Hills cemetery in Los Angeles, attended by more than 1,500 fans, friends and fellow musicians.
In March 2011, it was announced that the surviving members of the final lineup of DIO would embark on a project with former JUDAS PRIEST frontman Tim "Ripper" Owens under the name DIO DISCIPLES.
Rock and metal musicians around the world paid tribute to Dio in the weeks and months following his death. STONE SOUR and SLIPKNOT frontman Corey Taylor shared his feelings with The Pulse Of Radio about the fallen metal icon. "When I got that news that he had passed away, man, it seriously — it broke my heart. It broke it in two. Because honestly, I just feel like there will never be another Ronnie James Dio. He had such a pure voice — and still singing his ass off. I just know he'll be missed, and I will miss him as well."
Ex-VAN HALEN and current CHICKENFOOT bassist Michael Anthony also shared his memories of Dio with The Pulse Of Radio. "I don't know anybody that didn't grow up listening to his stuff," he said. "You know, VAN HALEN, we used to do from the first RAINBOW album, we did 'Man On The Silver Mountain'. I remember one time, the second VAN HALEN tour we were doing some festivals in Europe, and we actually played on the same show as Ronnie's band. Real powerful voice, you know, and definitely a driving force in hard rock music, that guy was."
Slash told The Pulse Of Radio that he felt the loss of Dio very keenly. "He's just somebody I was influenced by," he said. " I played all the RAINBOW stuff, I played the DIO stuff, the SABBATH stuff when I was in, you know, high school. I don't think that it's really set in what a, you know, huge figure in rock 'n' roll we lost, you know. Really major. Probably one of the most influential heavy metal singers of all time."
Fan-filmed video footage KING DIAMOND's October 28 concert at Moore Theatre in Seattle, Washington can seen below.
KING DIAMOND played its first show with new bassist, Swedish musician Pontus Egberg (THE POODLES, LION'S SHARE, ZAN CLAN), on July 25 at Gröna Lund in Stockholm, Sweden.
Egberg joined KING DIAMOND following the recent departure of Hal Patino.
Patino released a statement on July 20 calling KING DIAMOND's frontman and namesake "a tired, bitter, old man" and denying that he has a drug problem, despite the singer's implications to the contrary.
After King announced Hal's exit from KING DIAMOND, Patino posted a message of his own claiming that he was offered a "totally ridiculous" salary for the band's five shows this summer, calling the move "disrespectful" and insisting that he quit the band in disgust two days before King announced Patino was "relieved of his duties" as the bassist for KING DIAMOND. King then responded with a lengthy posting on his Facebook page, accusing Patino of "putting out extreme lies" about King's character and slamming Hal for asking for more money at the last minute after the rest of the band and the crew already accepted the same salary as they had received for last year's European tour.
King, 58, whose real name is Kim Bendix Petersen, underwent open-heart triple-bypass surgery in November 2010. He has since completed his cardiac rehabilitation program and has stopped smoking entirely, changed his diet and is getting regular exercise.
"Dreams Of Horror", a 2xCD collection of KING DIAMOND songs, newly enhanced into ultimate editions by King Diamond and Andy La Rocque themselves, will be released by Metal Blade Records on November 11.
"Dreams Of Horror" is the only "best-of" album covering the band's entire career. King Diamond and Andy La Rocque meticulously mastered and enhanced these 23 songs into the ultimate editions, chosen by the band from both the Roadrunner and Metal Blade catalogs.
"Eat You Alive", the new video from EMIGRATE, the side project of RAMMSTEIN guitarist Richard Z. Kruspe, can be seen below. The clip was filmed in Berlin, Germany by director Zoran Bihac, the man behind RAMMSTEIN's legendary "Mein Teil" video.
The "Eat You Alive" single sees Kruspe emerging from the deep in truly striking style, flanked by some of the musicians who appear on the forthcoming "Silent So Long" album, with Joe Letz from COMBICHRIST taking over on drums (Letz also appears in the clip for "My World", a track from the debut EMIGRATE album, released in 2007; APOCALYPTICA's Mikko Siren handles drum parts on the new album).
Alongside Kruspe and Letz, the video also features Margaux Bossieux on bass and Arnaud Giroux on guitar, with vocalist Frank Delle — from chart-topping German collective SEEED — reprising his role on the album with evangelical zeal; Bossieux was previously with New York punk band DIRTY MARY, while Frenchman Arnaud plays bass on the new album, as well as lending his production skills — in fact, his work on both EMIGRATE albums has been central to the cause.
For Kruspe, tapping into such varied musical personnel is very much in keeping with the "open door" ethos of the project; as well as allowing the guitarist to keep his creative instincts finely honed, EMIGRATE was conceived as a vehicle for other musicians to have their say and leave their mark, harking back to the early, ever-shifting punk scene in East Berlin where he originally cut his teeth.
The result of re-kindling this spirit is a new 11-track album, "Silent So Long", that sees a number of special guests adding to the overall flavour (Lemmy, Marilyn Manson, Peaches, etc.), plus a new single/video, "Eat You Alive", that shows the kind of chemistry that might be conjured up were the musicians to decide to take to the road.
In the meantime, "Eat You Alive" is available as an "instant grat" when "Silent So Long" is pre-ordered on iTunes.
"Silent So Long" will be released on November 24 via Spinefarm Records.
Alaskan metallers 36 CRAZYFISTS have emerged from a four-year recording hibernation to sign a worldwide deal with Spinefarm Records. The band's new album, "Time And Trauma", will be released in February 2015.
"We have found a new home at Spinefarm Records. And although the label is new to us, some of the staff are old friends and we couldn't be more grateful to unleash the beast that is 'Time And Trauma' with their help," says frontman Brock Lindow. "20 years in and it feels like Spinefarm is a killer home to hang our hats. See you all on the road in 2015!"
Spinefarm senior director of marketing Tim Brennan echoed that sentiment, saying, "We are thrilled to have 36 CRAZYFISTS be part of the growing Spinefarm family! They are a genuine band of brothers that has grinded for 20 years to create a truly committed fan base. 'Time And Trauma' is an incredible way to begin the next 20 years for the band.”
A new 36 CRAZYFISTS song, "Also Am I", can be streamed using the SoundCloud widget below.
36 CRAZYFISTS will close out 2014 with a slew of U.S. tour dates, including a December anniversary show in their native state.
36 CRAZYFISTS debuted the "Time And Trauma" title track during the band's U.K. tour at the end of last year.
36 CRAZYFISTS in 2012 announced the addition of drummer Kyle Baltus to the group's ranks. In addition, the band was rejoined by bassist Mick Whitney following the departure of Brett "Buzzard" Makowski.
36 CRAZYFISTS's last album, "Collisions And Castaways", sold around 3,300 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 161 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD landed at No. 3 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.
The second trailer for "Bloodstone & Diamonds", the new album from San Francisco Bay area metallers MACHINE HEAD, is available below.
Audio samples of the songs that are set to appear on the CD can be found at MachineHead1.com.
"Bloodstone & Diamonds" will be released on November 10 via Nuclear Blast Entertainment. The CD was produced by MACHINE HEAD frontman Robb Flynn and Juan Urteaga, and like the last seven of eight MACHINE HEAD albums, was masterfully mixed by Colin Richardson. Additional tracking, editing, and mixing was done with Andy Sneap (MEGADETH, EXODUS, TESTAMENT, ARCH ENEMY) and Steve Lagudi.
Regarding the musical direction of "Bloodstone & Diamonds", Flynn told Metal Hammer magazine: "There's definitely a lot of urgency on this record. It's a really heavy record arid there's a dark and evil vibe to a lot of it, but I feel like there's more of a rock vibe in there too. It's stripped down at times, and I like that. I think that sense of urgency has carried over from the demos we did, which were all done very quickly and spontaneously. We tried to keep that spontaneous vibe on the album."
He continued: "At one point we started getting really anal on the tracks and spending tons of time on stuff, and we'd listen back and say, 'You know what? This doesn't have the vibe of the demos.' The demos were so fuckin' frantic, so we changed our mindset and now it's a little bit looser. Some of the guitar takes are basically live. Often, 40 or 50 percent of a song came from a spontaneous, live take and that's killer! It adds energy and makes the songs feel alive."
Regarding the "Bloodstone & Diamonds" album title, Flynn said: "Without getting too philosophical on ya, bloodstone and diamonds represent two of the hardest materials on earth. It is also a lyric from the opening track of the album, 'Now We Die'.
"In many cultures, the bloodstone has been used as an amulet to protect against evil, and is the symbol of justice. Diamonds are the hardest natural material on earth (which is how we feel about our music), and it also represents the diamond logo I drew 22 years ago (in my wife's apartment on Dover St. in Oakland) that has become the symbol for the band."
"Bloodstone & Diamonds" track listing:
01. Now We Die
02. Killers & Kings
03. Ghosts Will Haunt My Bones
04. Night Of Long Knives
05. Sail Into The Black
06. Eyes Of The Dead
07. Beneath The Silt
08. In Comes The Flood
09. Damage Inside
10. Game Over
11. Imaginal Cells (instrumental)
12. Take Me Through The Fire
Judging by the brand new video for SEETHER's latest single, "Same Damn Life", "retirement" just got a whole lot more fun!
Watch as SEETHER redefines the phrase "aging gracefully" in the clip below.
SEETHER frontman Shaun Morgan came up with the "Same Damn Life" video concept in close collaboration with director Nathan Cox (QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE, FOO FIGHTERS, SYSTEM OF A DOWN, MARILYN MANSON); the pair have wanted to work together for years.
"Same Damn Life", the highly melodic second single from SEETHER's latest studio album, "Isolate And Medicate", is fast on the rise at Active Rock radio, already busting into the Top 10 after a few short weeks.
"Isolate And Medicate" sold 37,000 copies in the U.S. in its first week of release to debut at No. 4 on the Billboard album chart.
Morgan told The Pulse Of Radio that the "Isolate And Medicate" title describes almost exactly the conditions under which he wrote the group's new songs. "It sums up the process of writing the album," he said. "I felt pretty sequestered at the time and I was in an interesting place personally. So I took refuge in this little studio that I built basically by hand and I won't lie, there was plenty of red wine drank up there, there was, you know, the odd cigarette was smoked up there... It was definitely just that, it was me isolating myself and medicating myself in various different ways and making music."
"Isolate And Medicate" follows up 2011's "Holding Onto Strings Better Left To Fray". It marks the group's debut with Concord Record Group after spending the first decade of their career on Wind-Up Records. The band teamed up again with ace producer Brendan O'Brien (PEARL JAM, STONE TEMPLE PILOTS) to deliver the most poignant, passionate and powerful record of their career.
SEETHER, GODSMACK and others took part in the Rockstar Energy Uproar Festival this past summer.
Former NIGHT RANGER guitarist Joel Hoekstra, who recently joined WHITESNAKE as the replacement for Doug Aldrich, spoke to the Myglobalmind webzine about the status of the recording sessions for WHITESNAKE's new studio album, tentatively due early next year.
"There is a litte bit of work to do, recording-wise, in terms of overdubs," he said. "We are very close to sticking a fork into it and entering into mix mode. I am heading out to [singer] David's [Coverdale] here shortly and we are shifting into promo gear for a bit. Pictures and videos and things of that nature."
Speaking about the direction of the new WHITESNAKE material, Joel said: "The only thing that I can tell you is that it is really cool. It's great, straight-ahead rock and roll. Blues-inspired rock that you have known and grown to love coming from WHITESNAKE."
He continued: "We are not going to hit anybody with a formula change and move to smooth jazz.
"Working with David so far has been great; he is just an unbelievably great guy. We get along great, and he is so funny. He puts me at ease and I feel like he just wants me to be myself as a player.
"I am certainly interested in paying homage to all the players that have been through the camp and do my very best to represent historically what made WHITESNAKE so great as well.
"Honestly, a lot of that is still ahead of me. It was really jump immediately into doing this album, so a whole lot of that is just me doing what I do.
"Before the tour next year, when it comes to covering other people's material, is when I will do a lot of shedding on people's styles, if you will."
Asked why he chose to leave NIGHT RANGER to join WHITESNAKE, Joel said: "It doesn't have as much to do with me wanting to leave NIGHT RANGER as much as it was me wanting to take the WHITESNAKE gig.
"I was texting with Doug Aldrich, who is a friend of mine, the night before the news was leaked. He didn't say anything specific to me, but he just said that there was news coming. The next day I woke up, I checked my Twitter and people were suggesting me for a potential replacement for something. I went, 'For what?' I clicked on it and it was for Doug in WHITESNAKE. I thought, "Oh, man, that would be actually a really good fit and be kind of cool.' So just to see what the deal was, I sent off an e-mail to put feelers out and see if there was going to be auditions and anything like that. I did hear back — eventually. [Laughs] Not at first. Then, I think, a couple of well-respected people had put my name forward to David Coverdale. We ended up getting together in late May, just meeting and a little bit of auditioning, so to speak. A little bit of playing on some pre-production. That went fantastic and we got along great, which is always important. Really, at that point he just said, 'Why don't you come back and play on the album in August?' At that point, I just thought, 'Well, we have got this penciled in, more or less, and we will see how it goes.' I just kept things quiet and when I went back out in August, I really started to get enthused playing on the album. I got along great with David and Reb [Beach, guitar] working on that. Reb and I got some great guitar work done together."
Hoekstra appeared on two NIGHT RANGER studio efforts, 2011's "Somewhere In California" and the recently released "High Road", as well as on 2012's 30th-anniversary acoustic concert set "24 Strings & A Drummer".
Aldrich left WHITESNAKE on May 7, explaining in a statement that he "had several recording and live commitments, so [he] needed a more flexible schedule to conclude these before going full force as normal." He added: "Unfortunately, my schedule was not workable."
Aldrich played on the last two WHITESNAKE studio albums, 2008's "Good To Be Bad" and 2011's "Forevermore", and appeared on several live releases, including last year's "Made In Japan" and "Made In Britain/The World Records".
It's Friday (October 31), which means it's time for your weekly FOO FIGHTERS track. This time the song is "Congregation", which was recorded at Nashville's Southern Ground studio with assistance from Zac Brown of the ZAC BROWN BAND. According to The Pulse Of Radio, the making of the song and the musical history of the city in which it was recorded will form the basis of Friday night's third episode of "Sonic Highways", the eight-part HBO series documenting the creation of the new FOO FIGHTERS album.
Each installment of the Dave Grohl-directed series follows the band to a different city to record one song for the disc.
The first two episodes featured the recording of "Something From Nothing" in Chicago and "The Feast And The Famine" in Washington D.C.
The "Sonic Highways" album comes out November 10.
Meanwhile, Grohl might have been joking when he remarked in an interview with Studio Brussel that he's already thinking about how he wants to make the next FOO FIGHTERS album, saying, "Wait until you see what we're doing for the next record. That's some fucked up shit. I already know what we're doing for that, and it makes this look like fucking kindergarten."
Reactivated Southern California metallers ATREYU will release their first material in five years through Raw Power Management's record label imprint Search And Destroy.
Search And Destroy, which has launched bands such as MALLORY KNOX, DON BROCO, AXEWOUND, CROSSFAITH and WHILE SHE SLEEPS, among others, has joined forces with the recently reinvigorated Spinefarm Records to sign both new and established talent moving forward.
In a recent interview with Australia's Music Feeds, ATREYU drummer/vocalist Brandon Saller stated about how the band decided to get back together and start working on new music again: "I think it was probably six to eight months ago, we kind of just started talking again. It started coming up a year and a half ago, and it just wasn't right. So we started more seriously talking about it and decided that we wanted to dip our toes back in and inch our way back into playing again. It really felt right for all of us and with the state of the music world right now, it felt like a good time to do that."
He continued: "It was funny because a lot of people had speculation and were talking about a lot of stuff with [the celebration of the tenth anniversary of ATREYU's second album] 'The Curse', and I think that a lot people just expected maybe some 'Curse' shows to come up when we first [announced] we were coming back. And that definitely came up, but it was the kind of thing where we just felt like making music again more than anything. So it started as kind of a… The idea for that turned into having more interest in making more music. We started writing again and jamming and went into the studio with Fred Archambault, [whom] I've done stuff with with my band HELL OR HIGHWATER; he's just a great producer and engineer. So we went into the studio and recorded some music, just to see how it felt. So we went from there and announced a couple of shows here in the States. Everything's kind of fallen into place in a pretty special way, so it's a lot of fun right now."
Speaking about the direction of the new ATREYU material, Saller said: "It's hard to say. One of my favorite records that we've ever made is [2007's] 'Lead Sails Paper Anchor'. I love that record. I feel like where ATREYU is most like ATREYU should be is somewhere in the middle of 'The Curse' and [2006's] 'A Death-Grip On Yesterday' era. And I feel like the new stuff we're writing doesn't sound like that at all. It's a total reincarnation of my band and it's fucking as heavy as can be and as aggressive as can be, and it's definitely a punch in the face for heavy music in general. But we weren't really focusing on what era or what kind of record we should go back to and try to emulate, it was just, like, 'Let's give a hundred percent of everything that's inside of us that we need to get out.' I think it's blistering. We're stoked."
Vocalist Alex Varkatzas had this to say about ATREYU's recently released new song "So Others May Live": "'So Others May Live' is inspired by one of my best friends, who is ex-military. The things our troops go through to protect us are pretty unreal. Their treatment after leaves a lot to be desired, as well."
He continued, "The song honors them and condemns our government's constant deployment of these brave souls. The people who fight and die for us often come from a certain socio-economic background — the working class. The people making these decisions to send our nation's children to war come from positions of privilege and wealth; their kids aren't the ones getting deployed and they aren't risking their lives every day at work. Yet they order the working class to go 'keep us safe' at the drop of a hat, it feels like. It's bullshit. It's the politicians and the rich of this country waging war to keep the majority pre-occupied, so they can make money and advance their bullshit political agendas. The expense is 'expendable' working class/poor Americans' lives, never the rich."
XTRMST, the new straight-edge hardcore band featuring AFI lead vocalist Davey Havok and guitarist Jade Puget, will release its self-titled debut album on November 18. The first single from the CD, "Conformist", was made available on October 7.
"Jade and I have been talking about starting a straight-edge hardcore band for years," says Havok. "We started writing and recording in early 2012 and chose the name XTRMST because it expresses the messages represented on the record. The straight-edge movement is not one of moderation. It's based in undeniable objective truths."
"The straight-edge philosophy is something that Davey and I gravitated towards at a young age, drawn by concepts and ideals that seem almost foreign in modern society," says Puget. "Like much of the other subcultures we were a part of growing up, it put us at odds with 99% of the people around us, which was something we embraced. Being sXe for over 20 years and being musicians, it seemed natural that this crucial ideology would find a musical expression."
The 14-track XTRMST album was produced and mixed by Puget at his home studio and at The Treehouse in Los Angeles, and its release will come via Dim Mak Records, the indie label founded by DJ/producer (and former member of hardcore band THIS MACHINE KILLS) Steve Aoki.
Although Aoki and Dim Mak are most often seen as leaders in the electronic dance music space, the release of the XTRMST album marks a return to Aoki and Dim Mak's hardcore roots.
"I got into straight-edge hardcore when I was a teen. It was my community, it was the reason I picked up a guitar, it's the reason I was in bands, and ultimately it was the reason why I started Dim Mak," says Aoki. Although no longer a staunch straight-edge follower today, Aoki expands, "I met Davey a while back and we bonded over our shared experiences in straight-edge culture. We found a lot of kinship there, and so it made sense for us to release an album that represents the spirit of what originally birthed Dim Mak."
"I wanted these songs to be chaos, at times difficult to listen to, the wild architecture difficult to understand, but with a taste of the hardcore we grew up on thrown in. The vocals are raw and the main vocal in every song is the first take," says Puget.
Fans began buzzing about XTRMST this past March, when Vacation Vinyl in Los Angeles offered free copies of a four-song cassette featuring a simple XT logo next to a sign that read, "Do you like hardcore? Fan of straight edge? If so — take this tape for free!" The tapes disappeared instantly and rumors of a new project from Havok and Puget lit up the Internet. When the rumor mill went into overdrive, Puget took to Twitter to announce, "Now that the cat is out of the bag, XTRMST is indeed Davey and I. More to come."
"These songs are the purest expression of emotion, with no thought towards commerce or accessibility," says Puget. "And the album was made with the amount of money you have in your pocket right now — just two people expressing their love and hate into microphones in a tiny room."
"Xtrmst" track listing:
01. Words For The Unwanted
03. Social Deathplay
08. The Breed
10. The Way
11. Swallow Your God
12. Dirty Nails
14. Coward Bow Your Head
On December 9, LYNCH MOB will release the "Sun Red Sun" EP via Rat Pak Records. The CD was written and recorded by the same lineup as the "Sound Mountain Sessions" EP: George Lynch on guitar, Oni Logan on vocals, Robbie Crane on bass and Scot Coogan on drums.
"Sun Red Sun" once again highlights the unique pairing of Logan and Lynch, showcasing their ever-evolving songwriting abilities. Mixed and mastered by Chris "The Wizard" Collier ( LITA FORD), it offers up straight-forward rockers like "Believers Of The Day" and "Play The Game", as well as more groove-oriented cuts like "Erotika" and "Subliminal Dream". The CD also features a dynamic Lynch guitar solo track called "Black Waters" as well as an acoustic ballad called "Sun Red Sun", which is a tribute to late BADLANDS and BLACK SABBATH singer Ray Gillen, who died on December 3, 1993 of AIDS-related complications. The release also features a cover of BAD COMPANY's "Burnin' Sky" and includes four remastered bonus tracks from the original "Sound Mountain Sessions" EP: "Slow Drag", "World Of Chance", "City Of Freedom" and "Sucka".
"I was brothers with Ray," Oni explained to "The Double Stop" podcast. "He was a good dude. He was a great guy to me. When I arrived into L.A., he was a beautiful man to me. He was an unbelievable talent. So this 'Sun Red Sun', it's his extension for him. And this song 'Sun Red Sun' is written in the idea of that I'm speaking for him and I'm speaking for me. 'Sun Red Sun'… you know, shine on me forever. That kind of thing. So you'll hear it in the lyrics when you hear the song. So Ray is a dominant and principal meaning in the title of the album."
Asked what it is about his chemistry with Lynch that keeps him coming back to the band after leaving the group several times in the last few years, Logan said: "It's [George's] undeniable riffage — the riffage of the sexiness that he supplies to me that I get from no other. I can never get it from any other.
"We have a special thing going on. It's been like that forever. And if you were to ask him, [he would tell you] the same thing: it's like no other. It's just the way that it works. Somehow, the energy and the synergy of what it about, it works together. He evokes the riffs that just make me wanna fucking write. That's fine and simple. That's it. He's magical, he's a purist, he's a deep thinker, and I think he acknowledges me as the same.
"When he tells me, 'Oh, man, that was a great lyric,' I take that and run home with it. 'Cause we're acknowledging each other.
"I think we just need to let things happen at this stage. And I'm always gonna be there for it."
LYNCH MOB's last release was the "Unplugged: Live From Sugarhill Studios" EP, which came out in March 2013.
"Victims Of Contingency", the new video from Dutch symphonic metallers EPICA, can be seen below. The clip was directed by Remko Tielemans (TEXTURES) and was produced by the Kunstoff Kollectiv, the same team who were responsible for the band's music video for "Storm The Sorrow".
Comments EPICA guitarist Mark Jansen: “We've picked a heavy and brutal track this time as we wanted to surprise everybody. As 'Victims Of Contingency' is also a fan favorite, we are convinced that it is the right choice.
"The video for 'Storm The Sorrow' has been received very well by the fans, so we were very happy to work with Remko and his team again.
"We think the end result for 'Victims Of Contingency' is astonishing and I am very excited that we can finally share this video with all of you!"
"Victims Of Contingency" is taken from EPICA's sixth studio album, "The Quantum Enigma", which sold around 3,700 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 110 on The Billboard 200 chart.
In a recent interview with Aux Portes Du Metal, Jansen stated about the lyrical themes covered on "The Quantum Enigma": "'The Quantum Enigma' means that in quantum physics we can't observe little particles without influencing them. It's been proven in a very famous experiment called the dual slit experiment. As we are all made out of an infinite amount of particles, what does all of this mean for the world as we know it? Is the world still there when we're not watching? Or is it a holographic projection coming from ourselves in a way? What is real and what is an illusion? The 'solid' matter as we know it isn't that solid after all. It's all energy which is spinning and turning in a way that it gives us the illusion of being solid.
"'The Quantum Enigma' is pointing out such questions which are dealing about, thoughts, dreams, illusions of the mind. 'The Second Stone' talks about Alzheimer; people who get this disease die mentally for a first time, then after a while they die physically for a second time. 'Victims Of Contingency' talks about taking responsibilities for your deeds, and the power to learn from mistakes in order to grow as a human being. 'Chemical Insomnia' talks about the sleeping pill culture that goes totally out of proportions these days."
JUDAS PRIEST singer Rob Halford, who has been clean and sober since January of 1986, credits his belief in a higher power for helping him in his recovery.
"I'm a different guy to when I was 20," Halford said furing an appearance on HATEBREED frontman Jamey Jasta's official podcast, "The Jasta Show" (hear audio below). "I've been able to look at the world and see the world and find out what really is the most important and valuable thing, to me, as I live from day to day."
He continued: "When I got clean and sober 28 years ago, that was a major change in my life. And part of my recovery is just having this higher-power belief. And it works. It works, man. It really, really is important."
Halford added: "There probably will be people listening to [this] podcast who don't have anything like that in their life, and that's great; it's all about acceptance. But I always say to people, if you're thinking about it, the simplest thing I do is I pray. I pray quite a bit, actually. And even if you don't believe in prayer, just have a go. Pray for a good day, or just pray for your friend, or whatever it might be. And it's amazing, man, 'cause it absolutely works. I guarantee, it genuinely does work. And now I'm sounding like [American evangelical Christian evangelist] Billy Graham, but I'm just trying to express some of the things that are important to me on a day-to-day basis that make me able to walk out on that stage each night and do my work."
While Halford states that he doesn't want to preach and force people to drink and act responsibly, he is quick to warn up-and-coming musicians that there will be consequences to their actions.
"Whenever I have an opportunity to speak to new, young bands, and they go, 'Rob, give us a bit of information,' I just say, 'Man, just go out there and do everything. Don't listen to me. You're gonna do stuff anyway, because it's your life. But you'll make choices that may kind of backfire a little bit along the way, and then when they do, think about it and think about what you've gotta do to overcome those things where you don't feel good anymore or you're angry about something,'" he said. "Because, if you become dependent, a lot of it is due to that kind of imbalance."
He continued: "In a band, it's really important to try and stay healthy. Because these people work hard, they put their money down to buy a ticket, they come to the show, they come and see you, they come and hear you, and they deserve the best show you can give them. So don't go stumbling out on that stage feeling sick because you were up all night boozing or doing whatever. That's disrespectful to your audience. And that's just, again, wisdom."
Halford added: "I hope I don't sound like I'm preaching. I'm just trying to give [the] listeners just a little bit of an insight to what I think, again, is really important."
In a recent interview with Classic Rock Revisited, Halford spoke in more detail about his decision to quit using substances. He said: "I was sick and tired of feeling sick and tired. I will always remember the first show I did clean and sober… It was in New Mexico, in Albuquerque. I literally felt elevated, as everything was coming with such clarity. I was able to really… enjoy the performance of JUDAS PRIEST without having all of the other things in front of it. Since that day, it has been a miracle."
Halford added, "Everybody has to face things in their lives at some point. It [doesn't have to] be booze and drugs. You can eat too much, or you can not exercise, or whatever… It is not easy staying clean and sober in rock and roll. There are temptations galore from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep, especially when you're on the road. [But] I think we're some of the strongest people, my friends and my sober brothers in metal."
In a brand new interview with Rolling Stone magazine, legendary rocker Sammy Hagar was asked if he could see any scenario where he would play with VAN HALEN again. "I would play with anybody that loves me and that I love," Hagar replied. "That would include VAN HALEN, but the love's not there right now. I do love those guys. We really bumped heads on the last tour [in 2004.] Anyone that saw that last tour or read my book knows that I'm not gonna take any blame 'cause there's no blame to give me. I went out and did my job probably better than anyone else in that band. Anyone that saw the show, I think, would agree with me. That tour was just a mess and I would never go into a mess like that again. I'm too happy as a human being to be that miserable ever again. I was miserable for the last 40 shows. The first 40 shows I was thinking, 'Well, maybe Eddie [Van Halen] will straighten out' or 'Maybe this can come together.' But that didn't happen, and by the last 40 I was miserable. I would, however, be in the original band that we started. That was a love fest full of creativity."
Hagar, who has been touring with THE CIRCLE, a combo consisting of Michael Anthony, Jason Bonham and Vic Johnson, told The Pulse Of Radio not long ago that he occasionally pines for VAN HALEN: "Y'know, I miss VAN HALEN," he said. "I don't like them fuckers and fuck those guys for what they did to Mikey [Anthony, former VAN HALEN bassist], especially — not me. Unnecessary. Bad guys. But I miss 'em, y'know? [Laughs] I miss that musicianship and that creative spark and that friction that made it all work, y'know?"
VAN HALEN reunited with original singer David Lee Roth in 2007 after a 23-year gap, touring several times and releasing an album called "A Different Kind Of Truth" in 2012.
Original bassist Michael Anthony was left out of the reunion, replaced by Eddie Van Halen's son Wolfgang.
Photo credit: RockScene.com / Mark Weiss Photography
METALLICA is seeking help from the band's fans while preparing remastered, deluxe editions of their first two albums, 1983's "Kill 'Em All" and 1984's "Ride The Lightning", which they hope to put out in 2015. Anyone who has photos of the group and memorabilia or audio of concerts METALLICA played between 1983 and 1985 is being asked to submit them for possible inclusion in the reissues.
"We want it all," the band wrote on its web site. "Did you manage to sneak a video camera into a show long before they fit in your pocket? Maybe your old instamatic camera for some snapshots? A cassette Walkman with a microphone? We're looking for anything and everything...audio, video, photos, fliers, ticket stubs, the set list you picked up off the floor and in general any mementos you may have from that around that time."
Fans with items of interest, including stories, can e-mail METALLICA at firstname.lastname@example.org. The band added, "By submitting it, you're saying we can use it should your piece of history land on a release (yes, the lawyers made us add this part!)."
Originally issued on July 25, 1983 through the independent label Megaforce Records, "Kill 'Em All" was recorded in two weeks on a miniscule budget in upstate New York. Although only 1,500 copies were initially pressed, the album was reissued by Elektra Records after the band signed to that label in 1984 and has since been certified triple platinum for sales of more than three million copies.
The varied sounds of "Ride The Lightning", which included the first METALLICA ballad in "Fade To Black", drew mixed responses from some fans. The band's drummer, Lars Ulrich, told Rolling Stone magazine: "It did surprise us a little bit, I guess. People started calling us sellouts and all that type of stuff. Some people were a little bit bewildered by the fact that there was a song that had acoustic guitars."
Noting that at least four songs from the album are still part of METALLICA's live set today, Ulrich said that "Ride The Lightning" "holds up very well," adding, "There's kind of a youthful energy that runs through the record."
To commemorate the 30th anniversary of the release of METALLICA's six-time-platinum third album, "Master Of Puppets" — the band's last record with bassist Cliff Burton — in 2016, the group is collaborating with an author named Matt Taylor on a book about the making of the LP.
Taylor, who wrote an acclaimed and extensively detailed book on the making of the movie "Jaws", contacted the band with a proposal to create a definitive history of "Master Of Puppets". The band explained: "When we took a spin through 'Jaws: Memories From Martha's Vineyard', we were so blown away by the presentation, thorough coverage, and attention to detail that went into it, we knew he was the man to help us celebrate the upcoming 30th anniversary of that release."
The group stated that Taylor "has been very busy doing extensive interviews with all of us, our managers, record company staff, people we hung with then and Cliff's dad Ray," but added, "Matt's plan for the 'Master Of Puppets' book is to lean heavily on amateur, fan-taken photos and stories reflecting the grassroots vibe of the time."
Fan-filmed video footage of Californian rockers PAPA ROACH performing the title track of their eighth full-length album, "F.E.A.R. (Face Everything And Rise)", last night (Wednesday, October 29) in Berlin, Germany can be seen below.
The official video for "F.E.A.R." will make its online debut on November 4.
The follow-up to 2012's "The Connection", "F.E.A.R. (Face Everything And Rise)" was recorded at Las Vegas' The Hideout Recording Studio, which is owned and operated by Canadian producer Kevin Churko. Churko has previously worked with OZZY OSBOURNE, FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH, IN THIS MOMENT and HELLYEAH. It will be released on January 27, 2015 via Eleven Seven Music.
As far as the title goes, the writing was on the wall — literally. "Jacoby [Shaddix, vocals] wrote 'F.E.A.R.' on the wall of the studio in spray paint," laughs bassist Tobin Esperance. "When we started the record, he was like, 'I want construction paper hung up on the walls everywhere so I can write down all of these thoughts.' That was the only thing he ended up writing on the wall. It stuck."
"Fear is something I face every day," the singer admits. "It's about taking a negative and turning it into a positive. When you see the word, it looks like Fear. If you look deeper, it's Face Everything And Rise." "It felt like such a great concept to write an album around," says Jerry. "It's about facing your fears and knowing that no matter what happens, you'll be alright."
"We pride ourselves on having that powerful aspect to our recordings and shows," adds Tony. "We were able to convey that here."
"F.E.A.R." track listing:
01. Face Everything And Rise
03. Broken As Me
04. Falling Apart
05. Love Me Til It Hurts
06. Never Have To Say Goodbye
08. War Over Me
The song "Warriors" can be streamed below.
SLAYER fan Jake, who shot a near-perfect spoof of Matthew McConaughey‘s Lincoln commercial in an attempt to sell his car in order to raise money for tickets to the band's concert in Los Angeles in Los Angeles next month, has been rewarded for his creativity. After seeing Jake's clip — which was actually produced by the experts at the Merit/Andrew ad agency, where Jake reportedly works as a production coordinator — the members of SLAYER decided to give Jake tickets to the show.
A video message from SLAYER bassist/vocalist Tom Araya to Jake can be seen below.
Comedian and actor Jim Carrey recently made headlines with his parody of McConaughey's Lincoln ads during Jim's guest-hosting appearance on the October 25 episode of "Saturday Night Live". Others who have mocked McConaughey's trippy stream-of-consciousness narrations of his wanderings in a Lincoln MKC SUV include Conan O'Brien, "South Park" and Ellen DeGeneres.