Swedish female-fronted heavy rockers SISTER SIN will release their fifth studio album, "Black Lotus", on October 27 via Victory.
According to a press release, SISTER SIN "skillfully inject elements of classic, metal-tinged hard rock in the vein of MÖTLEY CRÜE, ACCEPT and JUDAS PRIEST, while remaining contemporary, fresh and pushing heavy metal to wider audiences, akin to bands like THE PRETTY RECKLESS and HALESTORM."
Says Revolver magazine: "If you think SISTER SIN are just another female-fronted metal band, you've got another thing comin'. Spiked and leather-clad, these Swedes crank out music for fighting hard and partying harder."
The lyric video for the "Chaos Royale" song from "Black Lotus" can be seen below.
The "Chaos Royale" digital single and "Black Lotus" digital pre-order are available now at iTunes and Amazon Music.
Exclusive SISTER SIN pre-order packages for "Black Lotus" are available now at VictoryMerch.com. Starting at just $19.98, various packages include the "Black Lotus" CD or limited-edition colored vinyl with exclusive t-shirts, hooded sweatshirt, koozie and more. All pre-orders include an instant MP3 download of the track "Chaos Royale".
SISTER SIN's third album, "Now And Forever", entered the official chart in the band's home country of Sweden at position No. 44. Released on October 23, 2012 via Victory Records, the CD was recorded at Standstraight Studios in Stockholm with producer Chris Snyder and was mixed by Cameron Webb (MOTÖRHEAD, SOCIAL DISTORTION, DANZIG).
HURTSMILE, the band led by the third VAN HALEN frontman, Gary Cherone (also of EXTREME), who took over when Sammy Hagar left the group (or was fired, depending on whom you ask) in 1996, will release its sophomore album, "Retrogrenade", in North America on October 7 via Cherone's own Slipkid Records. Following up on the band's acclaimed self-titled debut in 2011, the fan-funded "Retrogrenade" pays homage to almost every genre Cherone has excelled at in the past. Inspired by the classic rock records they grew up on, "Retrogrenade" is the collective effort of HURTSMILE flexing their musical muscle.
The song "Rock N' Roll Cliché" from "Retrogrenade" can be streamed using the SoundCloud widget below.
Of "Retrogrenade", Gary Cherone commented, "The strength of this record is that all the members of the band contributed to the songwriting process which resulted in a wonderfully creative diversity. This second effort has been a natural progression and we've yet to repeat ourselves musically."
Gary Cherone's career is rooted in classic rock, but his innate diversity and broad influences have created unexpected detours and surprises. EXTREME is the formidable genesis of Cherone's career; its "funky metal" roots and ubiquitous #1 smash hit "More Than Words" introduced Cherone to the mainstream, but it was EXTREME's captivating performance at the Freddie Mercury tribute concert that finally put him on the world stage. A few years later, Cherone would be asked to join the legendary VAN HALEN and co-write their "VH3" album with the band and tour the world once again.
In 2011, Gary teamed up with his brother Mark Cherone (FLESH, SUPERZERO), Joe Pessia (TANTRIC, DRAMAGODS) and Dana Spellman to record the self-titled debut, "Hurtsmile", a musically aggressive sucker punch to the face featuring Cherone's most provocative lyrics to date.
HURTSMILE's music is chock-full of swaggering guitars, soaring vocals and trademark eclecticism, with the Boston Globe declaring the quartet, "hard-hitting."
HURTSMILE is Gary Cherone (vocals), Mark Cherone (guitar), Joe Pessia (bass, mandolin) and Dana Spellman (drums, percussion).
"Retrogrenade" track listing:
01. Rock N' Roll Cliche
02. Hello, I Must Be Going
03. Big Government
04. I Still Do
05. Sing A Song (My Mia)
06. Anymore (Don't Want My Love)
07. Where Do We Go From Here
08. A Melody For You
09. Wonder What
10. Walk Away
12. Pump It Up
Legendary LED ZEPPELIN singer Robert Plant says that he doesn't find much of value in the band's ongoing reissue campaign, calling the previously unreleased bonus tracks "mostly work-in-progress stuff" that offer "nothing relevant" to him personally.
The ZEPPELIN reissues are being made available in a range of digital, CD, vinyl, and deluxe box sets through Atlantic/Swan Song, accompanied by previously unreleased bonus tracks including rough mixes, backing tracks, alternative versions, and new songs.
Asked if these versions shed any new light on the music for him personally, Plant tells Billboard.com: "No, not really. Because it's so long ago. What you're hearing there is mostly work-in-progress stuff. Things on their way to completion, and maybe there's some little quirk or something that led to an either/or moment. But it's nothing relevant, really. Not to me, at least."
Plant remains respectful of his accomplishments with guitarist Jimmy Page and LED ZEPPELIN, telling The Telegraph in a recent interview: "I had no history to speak of, really, before I met Jimmy. I hadn't stepped into my physical personality. In ZEPPELIN, I learned how to apply myself, how to express myself as a writer, how to shut up and listen. So I grew, I got some of my chops."
During LED ZEPPELIN's 2012 New York City press conference to publicize "Celebration Day", Robert Plant admitted that the pressure of making music under the LED ZEPPELIN moniker is tremendous. "I think expectations are horrific things," he said. "I mean, if you go off and play in North Africa, or something like that, you just, you know you're going to have a good time and you're going to work with people and there's nothing else about it. That's how we started, in a little room with Jason's [Bonham] dad [John Bonham, late LED ZEPPELIN drummer] all that time ago. So, to actually, to do anything at all together is such a kind of incredible weight, because I think we were really propelled by Jason [who played drums at ZEPPELIN's 2007 reunion show] and his enthusiasm."
In a brand new interview with The Indian Express, vocalist Burton C. Bell of Los Angeles cyber metallers FEAR FACTORY was asked about how the group developed its sound and whether FEAR FACTORY considers itself purely an industrial band.
"Our sound was an early exploration through experimentation," he said. "Learning our tools, and developing our songwriting was truly 'trial and error.'
"Dino [Cazares, guitarist)]and I were always interested in the sounds of industrial. Dino and Ray [Herrera, former drummer] were in death metal bands, and I came from a post-rock sound of early-noise/industrial. Our style combined as we began writing. It was not until Rhys Fulber [producer] came into the mix with 'Demanufacture' [FEAR FACTORY's second album] that we settled with our sound.
"I consider FEAR FACTORY an industrial metal band due to the repetitive and rhythmic beats, much like a working machine with gears and cogs would sound."
Bell also spoke about the inspiration for his lyrics in FEAR FACTORY, which have always had an emphasis on science fiction, with concepts like "man versus machine" being explored over various albums.
"As a boy, I was fascinated with sci-fi," he explained. "My father was a reporter in Houston, Texas, and he was following NASA during the Apollo 11 launch. I remember watching 'Star Trek', 'Twilight Zone' and 'Night Gallery' on TV with him.
"In the early days of FEAR FACTORY, Dino and I watched a lot of movies which inspired and influenced us — 'Terminator', 'Blade Runner', 'Robocop' and 'Full Metal Jacket', to name a few.
"As a lyricist, I try to be poetic.
"All our lyrics are poems.
"My poems are about emotions that make us human: love, hate, fear, jealousy, and pain.
"Can androids feel these too?
"This concept was perfect for the direction Dino and I wanted to take.
"We were struggling to survive in Hollywood then. We experienced the L.A. riots firsthand. We remember the National Guard patrolling the roads of L.A., setting up post at the 7-11 across the street. This was not science fiction, this was pure struggle. But these are the experiences that create science fiction; because we were struggling, we were fighting the establishment; the machine."
FEAR FACTORY has inked a deal with Nuclear Blast Entertainment for the release of its next studio album, tentatively due in early 2015. The band will enter the studio in October with longtime producer/collaborator Rhys Fulber to begin recording the CD, which will be mixed by acclaimed British producer Andy Sneap (MEGADETH, KILLSWITCH ENGAGE, EXODUS, TESTAMENT, ACCEPT).
Atlanta progressive metallers MASTODON were the musical guests on last night's (Monday, September 15) episode of "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" The band played several songs on the show's outdoor stage in front of a standing-room-only crowd.
Video footage of MASTODON's "The Motherload" performance from "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" can be seen below.
"Jimmy Kimmel Live!" airs every weeknight (11:35 p.m.-12:37 a.m., ET) and features a diverse lineup of guests that include celebrities, athletes, musical acts, comedians and human interest subjects, along with comedy bits and a house band.
MASTODON's sixth album, "Once More 'Round The Sun", sold around 34,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 6 on The Billboard 200 chart. The record arrived in stores on June 24 via Reprise Records.
MASTODON's fifth album, 2011's "The Hunter", opened with 39,000 units to enter the chart at No. 10. The band's previous CD, "Crack The Skye", registered a first-week tally of 41,000 copies back in April 2009 to debut at No. 11. MASTODON's 2006 effort, "Blood Mountain", came in with just over 24,000 units — significantly more than the 8,000 first-week total of its predecessor, 2004's "Leviathan" — which put it at No. 32.
"Once More 'Round The Sun" was recorded in Nashville with Grammy Award-winning producer Nick Raskulinecz, who is known for his work with RUSH, DEFTONES, FOO FIGHTERS and ALICE IN CHAINS. Also available on June 24 was a stunning deluxe 2LP vinyl edition of "Once More 'Round The Sun". This limited edition includes two discs pressed onto 180-gram black vinyl housed in a quadruple gatefold vinyl jacket featuring artwork by Skinner, plus a CD of the complete album. The package includes four exclusive lithographs derived from the album artwork.
In a brand new interview with the Houston Press, vocalist Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth of New Jersey thrash metal veterans OVERKILL was asked if the so-called "Big Four" of 1980s thrash metal — METALLICA, MEGADETH, SLAYER and ANTHRAX — were ever expanded to a "Big Five," who would get the extra slot: TESTAMENT, EXODUS or OVERKILL?
"Aw man, that's gonna put me in a corner!" Ellsworth laughed. "We measure our success in days, not dollars! But maybe you can find the answer in what I'm going to say.
"When [playing thrash metal] became harder in the '90s with grunge music, we never had a question about if we would stop doing it and go work for our moms and dads or something," Ellsworth offered. "We just needed to make it happen. We weren't going to let grunge stop us. And if it did, we'd just go back to the underground. I liked it there anyway!"
MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine last year spoke to Radio.com about which band should have been included if the "Big Four" were expanded and considered the "Big Five". Mustaine said: "You know, people will say there's a whole another generation, like the 'Medium Four' [laughs], and I think there's a lot of great bands that fit that bill, too. But I think probably EXODUS, because there was nobody else at the time that had that kind of pull or that kind of importance in the metal community. Granted, it was with [late EXODUS singer Paul] Baloff, and Baloff had a voice that you had to have an acquired taste for, but you know, I liked him."
In a 2010 interview with Metal Asylum, EXODUS guitarist Gary Holt was asked if he feels the "Big Four" should have been expanded and considered the "Big Seven", including EXODUS, TESTAMENT and OVERKILL.
"Well, I think it should be the 'Big Five' with EXODUS, because we were there at the start of thrash metal with METALLICA in the real early '80s," he said. "Same thing with MEGADETH because [Dave] Mustaine was a part of METALLICA's birth and he also created MEGADETH. And SLAYER are SLAYER. ANTHRAX are also great and old friends, but if you listen to those first few records, they have definitely changed. TESTAMENT has every right to be part of the thrash metal legends, but it just came down to timing because they came later. And OVERKILL have been their since the beginning also. But I don't get hung up on that shit, because I know how it all started and I know where I was when the shit got created. We [EXODUS] certainly deserve to be part of the founding fathers, but you know who often gets excluded are the Germans — KREATOR, DESTRUCTION and SODOM. Everybody looks to America and forgets those guys. KREATOR, DESTRUCTION and SODOM all released records in the early '80s."
He continued: "Really, the "Big Four" is solely based on sales and the ones who sold the most. But if you compare records, I will put EXODUS' last few albums up against anybody's shit. SLAYER is always awesome; the last TESTAMENT album [at the time of the interview], 'The Formation of Damnation', was great; the new MEGADETH [2009's 'Endgame'] is one of their best; METALLICA are still finding their feet again, and their last album, 'Death Magnetic', was a step in the right direction. The new OVERKILL, 'Ironbound', is one of their best records ever; it's so good. And KREATOR, DESTRUCTION, and SODOM still make great new music. What I think it boils down to is the bands who've been doing this the longest still can do it the best. METALLICA are still a mighty force live, but they lost their way for quite a while. But then again I've never had to deal with the horrible problem of having millions of dollars. [Laughs] Maybe if I had that kind of money, it would distract my hunger for doing this kind of shit, too. But, unfortunately for me, I have to keep kickin' people in the teeth, I don't have the funds to go art-shopping. My version of fine art is a new edition of Hustler magazine. [Laughs]"
Earlier this year, METALLICA guitarist Kirk Hammett was asked by U.K.'s Metal Hammer magazine if it's strange to him how much METALLICA has eclipsed the other "Big Four" bands in terms of commercial popularity.
"I try not to spend too much time thinking about stuff like that because whatever I think of is still not going to be a satisfying enough explanation," he replied. "It's just the way things are and how the chips fell.
"EXODUS in the '80s had some bona fide problems, but I think their first album [1985's 'Bonded By Blood'] is just as good as [METALLICA's debut] 'Kill 'Em All'. We were just playing the music we wanted to hear because no one else was playing it and it wasn't being played on the radio. It was only a small group of people who knew about it and it was almost elitist in that 'No posers allowed!' thing."
Slash's third solo album, "World On Fire", can be streamed in its entirety using the SoundCloud widget below (courtesy of USAToday.com). The disc is the second to feature Slash's regular backing band, MYLES KENNEDY & THE CONSPIRATORS, and follows up 2012's "Apocalyptic Love". Although the album's title sounds like a political or social statement, Slash told The Pulse Of Radio it wasn't meant that way at first. "There's no social commentary originally about the album title," he said. "It was a song on the record basically about sex. But when I started looking for an album title, something about that title stuck out to me. I think it was because a lot of stuff has been going on — the whole thing with the Malaysian flight, and Israel, and all the stuff going on with Russia at the time. So 'World On Fire' all of a sudden had a much broader connotation."
Slash told Classic Rock magazine that the "World On Fire" album title was in place before the artwork was commissioned. "We decided on 'World On Fire', and that immediately brought chaos to mind," he said. "So I looked at different artists, to see if they had anything already painted that represented what I was thinking. I'd been following Ron [English] on Instagram, and he's always got these great, freaked-out ideas going on, so I called him up."
English previously worked with Slash on a limited-edition skull sculpture, which can be purchased from the artist's web site for $7500.
Slash released his first self-titled solo effort in 2010. On that album he employed a different vocalist on each track, before settling on ALTER BRIDGE member Kennedy for both touring and eventually recording.
"Apocalyptic Love" earned Slash his two first-ever No. 1 U.S. rock radio hits with "You're A Lie" and "Standing In The Sun".
The former GUNS N' ROSES member and Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame inductee just wrapped up a summer tour with AEROSMITH and will play three shows in West Hollywood next week before heading out to Europe.
The shows will take place at three legendary Hollywood music venues: the Troubadour on September 23, the Roxy on September 25 and the Whisky on September 26.
SLIPKNOT and STONE SOUR singer Corey Taylor says that the fact that he is not a household name has helped him avoid all the "crappy side effects" of being the frontman of not only one but two world-renowned metal bands.
Asked how he unplugs from his many different projects, which have included solo tours and authoring a pair of best-selling books ("Seven Deadly Sins" and "A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Heaven"), Taylor told Amelia of the 98 Rock radio station in Baltimore, Maryland: "Every once in a while, my wife and I will take a vacation. It's pretty few and far between, because we work together. So half the reason that I'm able to do the things that I get to do is because my wife helps me do it; she's been in band management for years, so we make a really good team."
He continued: "You know, I don’t need a lot to recharge. Actually, one of the ways that I recharge is I come home. I spend time with my family, I hang out with my wife's family, who I'm really, really close with. I spend time with my kids. That, to me, is unplugging and getting away from everything. 'Cause I don't live in Los Angeles; I still have my house in Iowa, and I have a house in Las Vegas, where most of my wife's family lives. I have these places where I can kind of get away from everything. And I'm lucky enough to be probably the most famous person that no one's ever heard of. So I can still go out and go grocery shopping and not get bugged. I can kind of do my thing and it's all good. So I get all the benefits of being in the industry and doing my thing, and I don't get any of the crappy side effects, where you never get a moment to yourself, you never get to any of these things. And I'm fine with that; I love that. I get to do all the fun stuff, all the creative stuff. I don't get any of the… I get a little bit of it — don't get me wrong — but I still get to do these things, because I enjoy doing them. And I think a lot of people, they hit a point in their career where they just stop enjoying it, so they start churning out crap; there's no quality to the content. And for me, I've always been the guy who, I don't do anything unless I really wanna do it. And I think that's why my level of quality has remained up there, at least in my eyes."
Taylor also spoke about the seemingly large number of veteran rock bands who have partaken in the reunion circuit in an attempt to cash in on revisiting their past without the benefit of great new music, or any new music at all in some cases.
"A lot of that comes down to the other side of, not only this industry, but of the lifestyle — if you get too wrapped up in the drugs or the womanizing or the hedonistic side of things," Corey said. "And you stay there. It's okay when you're young, but then you stay in that for too long and it sucks the life out of you. And not only that, but it sucks everything around your life out of you. So then you get to the other side, and it's, like, 'Well, that was a great party, but now I have nothing to show for it.' And luckily enough, I've got a lot of people around me who I've been able to kind of channel all that energy into making sure that they're taken care of, and that's what keeps me together."
SLIPKNOT will release its fifth studio album and first since 2008's "All Hope Is Gone" in October. The disc, titled ".5: The Gray Chapter", is also the band's first without late bassist Paul Gray, who died in 2010, and drummer Joey Jordison, who was dismissed in late 2013.
Fan-filmed video footage of GODSMACK's September 3 performance in Corpus Christi, Texas as part of the Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival can be seen below.
GODSMACK's sixth studio album, "1000hp" (One Thousand Horsepower), sold approximately 58,000 copies in its first week of release to land at No. 3 on The Billboard 200 album chart. The disc, which arrived on August 5, follows up 2011's "The Oracle", which topped the chart with sales of 117,000 copies in its debut week.
"We kind of do it differently every time we write and record," GODSMACK frontman Sully Erna told AMH Network about the "1000hp" songwriting process. "It was definitely a contribution from everyone. We all had musical ideas and I had a handful of songs that I brought to the table. We started carving them up, seeing which ones would make the record, and which ones were weak."
"When songs like '1000hp' was recorded, we started feeling the chemistry again, and once again felt really strong as a band."
Erna described the sound of the "1000hp" album to The Pulse Of Radio as "a little bit more raw, a little bit more open. The writing was a little freer. The production is really kind of raw and in your face, and the songs, man — I'm really, really excited about these songs. And I have to tell you honestly, I wasn't that excited about writing this record at first."
GODSMACK is taking part in the 2014 Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival, which kicked off on August 15 in Clarkston, Michigan and will run through September 21.
On September 10, Rustyn Rose of Metalholic.com recently conducted an interview with vocalist Warrel Dane and guitarist Lenny Rutledge of the reunited '80s cult metal outfit SANCTUARY. You can now listen to the chat in the YouTube clip below.
SANCTUARY's comeback album, "The Year The Sun Died", will be released on October 14 in North America and October 6 in Europe via Century Media. Recorded in Seattle at Soundhouse Studios with producer Chris "Zeuss" Harris (SOULFLY, SHADOWS FALL, HATEBREED, MUNICIPAL WASTE), the CD will feature 11 tracks. There will be a deluxe media book, available exclusively at CM Distro in the United States, which features expanded packaging and the bonus track, a cover of THE DOORS classic "Waiting For The Sun". The vinyl version will come with a CD featuring this bonus track as well. The cover artwork for the album was created by Travis Smith (OPETH, NEVERMORE).
"The Year The Sun Died" track listing
01. Arise And Purify
02. Let The Serpent Follow Me
03. Exitium (Anthem Of The Living)
04. Question Existence Fading
05. I Am Low
07. One Final Day (Sworn To Believe)
08. The World Is Wired
09. The Dying Age
10. Ad Vitam Aeternam
11. The Year The Sun Died
SANCTUARY recently filmed video for the song "Frozen" with director Dirk Behlau.
Photos from the "Frozen" video shoot can be found on the SANCTUARY Facebook page.
In 2010, four of the founding SANCTUARY members — Warrel Dane, Jim Sheppard, Lenny Rutledge and Dave Budbill — came together for a few select reunion performances. At first, it was just going to be a handful of shows, but the response and chemistry on stage was so overwhelming that the guys changed their minds. Now, some 20 years after they left off, SANCTUARY has continued with its unique mix of U.S. power metal, hard rock and progressive elements.
To complete the lineup, Brad Hull (FORCED ENTRY) is filling in for former guitar player Sean Blosi.
SANCTUARY released the classic albums "Refuge Denied" and "Into The Mirror Black" during its short existence between 1985 and 1992. Following the band's split, Dane and Sheppard formed NEVERMORE.
In a recent interview with DeadRhetoric.com, Dane stated about how the SANCTUARY reunion came together with guitarist Lenny Rutledge, bassist Jim Sheppard, drummer Dave Budbill, and guitarist Brad Hull: "What really fueled the reunion is when Jack Black got involved with the video game Brütal Legend and picked 'Battle Angels' to be in the game. The rumor is he picked the song that he liked to fantasize a bit about. That got us talking. We gave Sean [Blosi, guitarist] the opportunity to be involved, but he decided it's not his thing anymore. I respect that. We have known Brad through FORCED ENTRY, and he was a part of the last tour in the early '90s with us."
Regarding "The Year The Sun Died", Dane said: "About halfway through the songwriting process, I realized everything was going to be fine. I didn't have any apprehension or fears because I knew we had been bottling shit up for a long time, and when it was going to come out, it was going to be an assault attack, like that Michael Schenker song and album title. There might have been a few old ideas, but it's all pretty much brand new, current, and relevant. I think it really sounds like a modern metal record. It sounds up to date and will get us back into the metal market."
On the topic of working with producer Chris "Zeuss" Harris (SOULFLY, SHADOWS FALL, HATEBREED) on "The Year The Sun Died", Dane said: "Zeuss brought everything to the table; he is a great producer. Bottom line. He really pushed me hard, and made me sing better than I have in a long time. That's one great thing that a producer can do when they are showing you their skills. They know how to push musicians, and he did the same thing with all the guys in the band. He wanted everyone to perform as (good) as they could. I love that guy for that. I think we are pretty lucky we got him, he wanted to do this record so bad, he was pursuing us."
SANCTUARY's current lineup:
Warrel Dane - Vocals
Lenny Rutledge - Guitar
Brad Hull - Guitars
Jim Sheppard - Bass
Dave Budbill - Drums
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FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH drummer Jeremy Spencer urges anyone battling alcohol or drug addiction to seek out help before it's too late.
The drummer, who celebrated two year of sobriety in January, released his autobiography, "Death Punch'd: Surviving Five Finger Death Punch's Metal Mayhem", on September 2 via HarperCollins.
Asked what he would say to someone out there struggling with addiction, Spencer told "HardDrive Radio" (see video below): "You definitely have to live your own life and choose your own path. And I'm not one to stop and say, 'You need to stop and get it in order.' You're gonna have to make that choice for yourself. But you can always talk to someone. And I know until you're ready to stop, you're not going to. But a lot of the times, they say, you have to hit the wall in order to wake up and then decide to make the change. And, for me, I hit the wall, and fortunately, it wasn't hard enough to where it killed me, and I hope that's the case for you out there too. But there is help available."
Regarding how difficult it has been to stay sober on the road, Spencer said: "At first, it wasn't really hard, it was just different, because I had such a routine out there on tour. So the first time, being out on tour, not doing it, I was, like, 'This is weird, but…' I was actually writing the book the first time, so it was a helpful outlet. And everyone's really supportive — they know my deal, and they would prefer me to be alive, I think, rather than dead. And we're fortunate enough to have three buses [when we're touring], so I'm on the mellow bus, and I'm away from the debauchery."
Spencer said in an interview with a New Mexico radio station that one especially bad episode with drugs and alcohol convinced him that it was time to finally get clean and sober. Spencer explained, "It had been about two days. I was just doing coke and meth and drinking the whole time. I think I had a straw in one hand and a bottle of Jack in the other for about the past 20 hours… all of a sudden my body just went, 'Enough.' And I started convulsing, and my heart was kind of starting to skip beats. It was really scary."
Spencer continued, "I started really thinking about how bummed out my parents were gonna be, that their son, who left home at 19 years old to achieve this dream, had finally achieved it, and then he's gonna die. I just felt terrible about myself and terrible about letting them down. So I thought, 'If you get out of this one this time, you're gonna fix it.'"
Spencer said he went home and checked himself into rehab on his 39th birthday, saying, "I've been clean ever since."
The drummer told The Pulse Of Radio that he simply got tired of feeling awful all the time. "We used to hit it pretty hard out here and I would wake up just feeling rotted, you know, and you know, I had enough of feeling like crap every day and so I stopped," he said. "And now I feel a lot better. I get up at like six in the morning, on fire, man."
Spencer has committed a percentage of his personal income from the book to support NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, which represents more than 75,000 addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused health care professionals in the United States, Canada and abroad.
FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH begins its fall tour with VOLBEAT on September 16 in Salt Lake City.
Swedish death metal supergroup BLOODBATH, which features in its ranks KATATONIA's Jonas Renkse and Anders Nyström, as well as OPETH's Martin Axenrot, has recruited PARADISE LOST's Nick Holmes as its new lead singer.
Holmes will make his BLOODBATH debut on the band's new album, "Grand Morbid Funeral", which will be released on November 17 via Peaceville. The effort features guest appearances by Chris Reifert and Eric Cutler from AUTOPSY.
"Ever since I got into 'Lost Paradise' back in 1990," Renkse tells Metal Hammer magazine, "Nick Holmes has been one of my favorite growling vocalists out there. He was always audible and articulate but still deep and definitely morbid. It is a great pleasure to work with him some 25 years later after I was introduced to his thunderous roar!"
Adds Nyström: "Little did I expect to be working with the voice behind the death metal classic 'Lost Paradise', or the genre-defining 'Gothic' and yet here we are decades later, fullfiling another death metal dream. With his sinister and ominous vocal delivery, it's an absolute pleasure to make Old Nick the bell-ringer in BLOODBATH's 'Grand Morbid Funeral'!"
Regarding the musical direction of "Grand Morbid Funeral", Nyström says: "We're proud of all these different styled releases and we loved doing each and every one of them, but the objective was never to settle with a certain style, so our time has come to shift once more.
"It was already decided right after the last album that the next record would not become a 'Fathomless Part 2', but in certain aspects it would actually to become its antithesis! So prepare yourselves for an ultimate blueprint of destructive, raw, heavy, organic and sludgy death metal! The time has come to stomp those HM-2 pedals once more and close the circle of the death metal archives with our 'Grand Morbid Funeral'!"
Recorded once again at Ghost Ward Studios and the City Of Glass Studios in Stockholm, and mixed by David Castillo, "Grand Morbid Funeral" is undoubtedly the band's darkest and dirtiest opus yet; an organic collection of filth-ridden tracks straight from the grave, boldly eschewing the approach of somewhat over-produced modern death metal in favor of something altogether more rotten to the bone.
Formed in 1998 with a mutual fascination for horror and the glory days of death metal (especially the old Florida and Stockholm "Sunlight" scenes), the band has remained a leading light of extreme metal since its "Breeding Death" EP was unleashed back in 2000, and a formidable force for 15 years, further cemented by the devastating — and most successful album to date — "The Fathomless Mastery" in 2008.
BLOODBATH is set to appear on a string of festivals throughout 2015, including Inferno festival (Norway), Neurotic Deathfest (The Netherlands) and Maryland Deathfest (U.S.), with more to be announced.
NICKELBACK's video for the new single "Edge Of A Revolution" can be seen below. The track, which hit digital retailers on August 19, is taken from the Canadian act's eighth studio album, "No Fixed Address". The group's first release for its new label deal with Republic, a division of Universal Music, is due out this fall.
Says NICKELBACK guitarist Ryan Peake: "This was our second video with [director] Wayne Isham and we really enjoyed working with him. He really clicked with the concept and helped us fill in the gaps.
"The idea was to show that we don't have to accept things presented to us without question and that it's OK to challenge the status quo."
"No Fixed Address" is an 11-song set which includes such other songtitles as "Million Miles An Hour", "What Are You Waiting For?", "She Keeps Me Up", "The Hammer's Coming Down", "Satellite" and "She's Got Me Runnin' Round".
Although the new single is more politically oriented that previous NICKELBACK tunes, frontman Chad Kroeger told The Pulse Of Radio a while back that he wants the group's sound to be as diverse as possible. "I never want to be the band that has to write the one kind of song," he said. "I mean, we already get crucified for that enough. It's like, 'Well, they always write the, you know, the 'How You Remind Me's and this, that and the other thing.' And it's like, yeah, we like those melodic kinds of songs, but some of the heaviest material we've ever recorded got to be a single."
The new set will follow up 2011's platinum-selling "Here And Now". That album included the singles "Bottoms Up" and "This Means War".
NICKELBACK has sold more than 50 million records worldwide since breaking through with its 2001 album, "Silver Side Up".
NICKELBACK plans to hit the road in early 2015 for a lengthy world tour in support of the new record.
BUCKCHERRY guitarist Keith Nelson has slammed Irish rock giants U2 for giving their music away for free and "tell[ing] people that their music isn't worth anything."
U2 stunned the music world last week by delivering a surprise album at Apple's iPhone 6 unveiling and making it available to a half-billion iTunes users for free. 33 million of those iTunes account holders have accessed the free album, the company said on Monday.
Asked how he feels about free digital downloads and music piracy and all those issues that have affected music, Nelson told Northwest Music Scene in an interview conducted on September 12: "I think music has been devalued in the eyes of the consumer, to the point now where a band like U2 decides to just give its music away and basically tell people that their music isn't worth anything, it should be treated like something free, and that's a bummer because I know what it takes to make a record, I know what it takes to write a meaningful record full of songs, and get it into the consumers' hands, and to me music still has a value, so it's definitely something that I still struggle with."
Nelson went on to call U2's decision to give away the "Songs Of Innocence" album "crazy," adding that "I'm sure the band got paid, so they made their money, but they've sent a message to everyone that music is free, and that's disturbing. It's easy to do that when you're a multi-millionaire-billionaire and money isn't really something that you worry about, but when you're a working rock and roll band and you count on every dollar, it's disappointing to see someone do that. I don't really like the message that it sends that music is free."
In a 2009 interview with AltSounds, Nelson lamented the decline of the album and the rise of music downloading. He said: "It's unfortunate that right now in the business of making music it seems like the record as we know it, the compact disc, whatever you want to call it, the recorded body of work, seems to mean less and less to people on a business side, because the big companies are having a hard time profiting off of it like they used to, so all that is really left is the live show. I think that illegal downloading is unfortunate and is a bit of a ripoff to the artist and the record company, and what it's done is created an environment that has made the live concert experience that much more valuable. I'm lucky enough to be in a band that excels at the live concert experience, so it's a double-edged sword."
Former QUEENSRŸCHE singer Geoff Tate says that the upcoming progressive rock trilogy from his new band OPERATION: MINDCRIME will be "very complex" with "a very melodic content" and urges his fans to experience it "one on one" when it is released early next year.
Named after QUEENSRŸCHE's epic concept album from 1988, "Operation: Mindcrime", Tate's new band includes Rudy Sarzo (OZZY OSBOURNE, WHITESNAKE), Simon Wright (AC/DC, DIO), Randy Gane (MYTH), Kelly Gray (QUEENSRYCHE 1998 - 2001, 2012 - 2014) and Robert Sarzo (QUEENSRYCHE 2012 - 2014).
OPERATION: MINDCRIME is scheduled to enter the studio this month to begin recording the trilogy project, which Geoff has been working on for the past two years.
"It's a grim story that takes place in different locations around the world," Tate tells Albuquerque Journal. "The music reflects these places in the world, including Asia, South America and Europe. There are elements of those places in the music.
Regarding the musical direction of the OPERATION: MINDCRIME debut, Tate says: "It's very complex. My focus is telling the story and inventing melodies. … It has a very melodic content."
He adds: "I'm always kind of reluctant to describe music. One person's heavy is another person's light. It's always a puzzle to put into words. It's best experienced one on one."
Tate previously told the San Antonio Metal Music Examiner about his upcoming trilogy: "I've been working on it for a couple of years now, and it's pretty far along, very developed. There's a story line that spreads out over three records; thus, we have a trilogy. And it's a very in-depth story, kind of like a mystery, in a sense. It's very, very much a progressive album; there's lots of notes [laughs] and lots of interesting time-signature changes. From a muso standpoint, it's gonna be the most interesting thing I've ever done. There's a lot of no holds barred, a lot of non-conforming to the past. Since the past is over, we're all kind of looking forward to the now and what we're doing next. So we've kind of thrown off a lot of the things that go along with the past, like song structure and themes and things like that. We're taking this in a very different way."
Asked if he would describe his upcoming trilogy project as "Operation: Mindcrime" "on steroids," Tate said: "Well, I always hate to compare what I've done with what I'm doing now… It's very in-depth, and like 'Mindcrime', there's a lot of thought that goes into it. You have an outline and you have to write the story around the outline, and then you have to get very in-depth with the lyrics, of course, and then make sure that the melodies match up with the sentiment of what the lyrics are about. Then you've got the song structure itself — how do you present this idea the best way you can? There's a lot of thought that goes into it. Then you've gotta tie it all together so that it follows some sort of linear path and it doesn't lose your audience along the way. And you have to make it interesting, something that people will want to listen to over and over again rather than just putting it on once and going, 'Oh, I've got that.' I try to stay away from that kind of thing."
KISS bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons has commented on the NFL commissioner Roger Goodell's decision to suspend former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice indefinitely after video surfaced of Rice coldcocking his then-fiancée (now wife) at an Atlantic City, New Jersey casino earlier this year.
During an appearance on this past Friday's (September 12) edition of the 94WIP "Mike & Ike Show", Simmons, who is a co-owner of the Arena Football League team the LA Kiss along with his KISS bandmate Paul Stanley, was asked by hosts Michael Barkann and Ike Reese if he would ever want to own an NFL team. "It's not appealing, and I'll tell you why," Simmons said. "Because the politics there are so much and mired in nonsense."
He added: "I think elevators should be padded, don't you?"
Asked how he would have handled the Ray Rice situation and whether he thinks Goodell was aware of the existence of the shocking video of Rice knocking out his fiancée inside a casino elevator, Simmons replied: "We're all in the peanut gallery. None of us know the specifics expect what we saw on TV. And if the NFL knew about it, whether it is the commissioner or anybody else, they're held accountable. But the saddest part of all is that — and look, I'm not involved, we're just watching it on TV, so we really don't know all the details — but it's sad that Rice's wife or fiancée isn't copping to the fact that she was abused. More than abused — knocked out, the physical stuff."
He continued: "That guy needs… Well, my opinion is, if he was in jail for a day and became somebody's girlfriend, maybe he'd knew what abuse is like, but that's another story.
"I'm against physical violence of anybody. You raise your hand to somebody, you should he held accountable, not just in the legal system.
"It's unsportsmanlike. You know, there is such a thing as sportsmanlike behavior."
According to Simmons, Rice's behavior never would have been tolerated on his watch.
"Anybody on the [LA Kiss] team caught doing anything illegal or anyting like that is gone," the KISS bassist/vocalist explained. "In fact, one of the first moves we made [as owners of LA Kiss] is to make a serious offer to hire Tim Tebow [American football quarterback who is currently a free agent]. It was a serious offer, and media, unfortutely, played it up.
"Here's a guy who's a devout Christian, who, religion is very important in his life, and people make fun of it. Really? You're picking on him because he's a Christian? He never tortured a dog, never knocked out his girlfriend in an elevator, is not up for murder of anybody, allegedly. And this is the guy you pick on? Why? 'Cause he's a Christian? Really?
"Sometimes the media just riles me up.
"If anything, you should hold him up as an example. This is a good guy. I've met him. Especially because he's a Christian. You should go, 'Wow! How come there aren't more people like that?'"
During a recent MÖTLEY CRÜE tour stop in New Jersey, rock icon and national radio host Nikki Sixx returned to his roots working at famous East Coast record store Vintage Vinyl to promote his other band SIXX: A.M.'s forthcoming album, "Modern Vintage", and offer a special giveaway to fans. Those who pre-ordered copies of "Modern Vintage" at the record store in Fords, New Jersey received a limited-edition seven-inch vinyl of "Gotta Get it Right", the first single from the new album that is due for release by Eleven Seven Music on October 7.
While photos of Sixx working at Vintage Vinyl were shared across social media, exclusive hidden camera footage was also filmed by the people behind some of your favorite hidden-camera pieces, TV Boy. The resulting video of Sixx (a.k.a "Larry") working behind the store counter, including assisting customers with music searches, answering phone calls, and failed attempts to use a cash register, bag albums, all while denying his true identity, can be seen below.
SIXX: A.M. features Sixx alongside James Michael and DJ Ashba.
Commemorating the 25th anniversary of the recording of their first EP, Swedish experimental extreme metallers MESHUGGAH will release a concert DVD / 2CD set and Blu-ray, "The Ophidian Trek", on September 30 via Nuclear Blast. With visual footage shot in the U.S. and Europe during "The Ophidian Trek" tour and festival footage from Wacken Open Air 2013 in Germany, the live audio was processed and edited by MESHUGGAH guitarist Fredrik Thordendal, mixed by Daniel Begstrand (DIMMU BORGIR, BEHEMOTH) and mastered by Mats "Limpan" Lindfors (ROXETTE, OPETH, MANDO DIAO).
The "Do Not Look Down" performance clip from "The Ophidian Trek" DVD can be seen below.
Comments MESHUGGAH drummer Tomas Haake: "We're really stoked about this new MESHUGGAH live DVD!
"It's been four years since the release of 'Alive', and with the band celebrating 25 years, we felt that we just had to get another one of these puppies out there!
"Audio/video was recorded during our European stretch of 'The Ophidian Trek' tour, as well as at the Wacken Open Air festival — and we're super proud of how it came out!
"For this one, we used the extremely talented photographer Anthony Dubois for filming and editing, etc., and he's really done a stunning job with it!
"Hope you guys dig it, and here's to another 25!! (or maybe just a little less;-) )”
"The Ophidian Trek" track listing:
04. Rational Gaze
07. Do Not Look Down
08. The Hurt That Finds You First
09. I Am Colossus
12. New Millennium Cyanide Christ
13. Dancers To A Discordant System
14. Mind's Mirrors / In Death - Is Life / In Death - Is Death
15. The Last Vigil
Live CD 1:
04. Rational Gaze
07. Do Not Look Down
08. The Hurt That Finds You First
09. I Am Colossus
Live CD 2:
03. New Millennium Cyanide Christ
04. Dancers To A Discordant System
05. Mind's Mirrors / In Death - Is Life / In Death - Is Death
06. The Last Vigil
"The Ophidian Trek" is MESHUGGAH's second live DVD, the first being 2010's "Alive", which debuted at position No. 8 on the Billboard Music DVD chart.
MESHUGGAH in June returned to North America for a tour celebrating the band's 25th anniversary. Opening for them was North Carolina's BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME.
MESHUGGAH played a very special 25th-anniversary set by performing selections from its entire discography and some rare songs that haven't been played live in many years.
In an interview with Australia's Loud magazine, Mårten Hagström was asked what the next step forward for MESHUGGAH is, creatively. "I have no idea, and I never do," he said. "And I think that's a good thing, 'cause people sometimes say that we're pretty unpredictable, but I don't really think we are, because we have a sound that's been with us since at least like the 'None' EP (from 1994), that's very us. [laughs] It doesn't really change all that much, but it's still a progression, and what I mean by taking a step forward is that we're still, we've been around now. We're veterans in this game [laughs], and we're still having fun with what we do, with experimenting with the music that we want to create. So as long as it feels like we're making it better, and as long as it feels like we're doing something that we can at least stand for and be proud of, that's all that we ask."
ANTHRAX bassist Frank Bello says that the band's new material is "challenge to play" and has described it as "thrashier" that the songs that appeared on the group's acclaimed 2011 effort, "Worship Music".
Asked about the progress of the songwriting sessions for ANTHRAX's next CD, Bello told WVOX "Metal Mayhem" host Matt O'Shaughnessy that there are "16 or 17 songs" that the band is working on right now, with plans for the bassist to get together with guitarist Scott Ian and drummer Charlie Benante in New York City "to do some more stuff — just make [the tracks] compact, just make them better and better."
He added: "We nitpick songs; that's what we do."
Regarding the musical direction of the new ANTHRAX material, Bello said: "It hurts to play it. How about that? [Laughs]
"I'll tell you… Scott and I were jamming with Charlie in Chicago, just doing the demos as we do before we record the record… And you know, after we're done with a song and you're shaking your hand like do do a fast ball? I'm telling you, the blood needed to flow again…
"I like the fact that we have to work for this. That means there's something going on with these songs — whether it's fast picking, whether it's just digging into it, something that both [Scott and I], we looked at each other and started laughing, and we started shaking our hands: 'That's gonna be a good one.' And that's the kind of record this is.
"This is a heavy record, man. This is a heavy, riff-oriented record. It's more thrashier, with [singer Joey] Belladonna's big vocals and melodies, which is gonna be great.
"I like the fact that this is a challenge to play this record. I wanna say that we're having fun with the challenge of playing this record. So that's what I look forward to."
In a recent interview with Kaaos TV, Ian stated about ANTHRAX's recording plans: "There's no plan [for us to enter the studio by a specific date]. Just like 'Worship Music', when it's ready, it's ready. We're not rushing anything. When we feel like we've got the record we need to make, either this year or next year, whatever it is, that's when we'll go in to start recording it."
Regarding whether he expected the recording process to be easier this time around since this will be Belladonna's second album with ANTHRAX since rejoining the band, Scott said: "Well, things weren't hard last time. Truthfully, the recording of 'Worship Music' couldn't have gone smoother with Joey. So I don't foresee any problems. We're doing it the same way we did the last record, and we're working with [producer] Jay Ruston again, producing it. So I don't know if that's a case of it being easier. It's not gonna be harder, I don't think; let's put it that way. I foresee it being very much similar, hopefully, to the process of last time, because last time it went great."
On the topic of what the new ANTHRAX material sounds like, Scott said: "It sounds like ANTHRAX. I don't review ANTHRAX records; I leave that up to the fans. So, for me, it just sounds like ANTHRAX. The people that actually buy our records, I think it's awesome that they are the ones that will then listen to it and say, 'Oh, it's like this,' or, 'It's like this' or, 'It's like this.' And hopefully it makes them happy. To me, it all just sounds like ANTHRAX…
"We don't think about it that hard. We just start writing songs, and it just kind of goes. And then at some point, you say, 'Hey, this has come together really well. Maybe we should start recording these.' That makes it sounds very easy, but it's not. It's usually about year's worth of banging your head against the wall to get it done. It's a lot of work, but at some point we'll know we're ready."
"Every record we've made, we don't compare it to our previous catalog. I don't look at it as, 'OK, this is our eleventh record, or tenth record'; I'm not even sure which number it is. I just look at every record as being of its time, when we had the time to write those songs and record that record. That's it. We just do the best we can in the time we have. Like, now we started writing, whatever, last year, and we're still writing, and we'll probably still be writing for a few more months, and then we'll start recording it. And the record will be of that time period. And that's kind of how I look at every record we've ever made — we just did the best we could in the time period we had to write and record the album."