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The WHo, Black Sabbath, Heaven and Hell, Alice Cooper, Blaze Bayley and tons of hard rock and heavy metal

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  • Robert
    According to AP, THE WHO will perform at halftime of the Super Bowl this season. The NFL announced during Thursday s game between the Oakland Raiders and
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 29, 2009
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      According to AP, THE WHO will perform at halftime of the Super Bowl this season.

      The NFL announced during Thursday's game between the Oakland Raiders and Dallas Cowboys that the longtime rock band known for classic hits such as 'Pinball Wizard' and 'Baba O'Riley' will play February 7 at Dolphin Stadium in Miami.

      Driven by singer Roger Daltrey and guitarist and songwriter Pete Townshend, the band's two remaining original members, The Who gained fame in the mid-1960s and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.

      Recent halftime acts at the Super Bowl have included BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN & THE E STREET BAND, TOM PETTY AND THE HEARTBREAKERS , PRINCE and THE ROLLING STONES.


      Drummer Vinny Appice (HEAVEN & HELL, DIO, BLACK SABBATH ) will undergo surgery on his right shoulder on Monday, November 30 for an injury sustained during the last HEAVEN & HELL tour.

      Commented Vinny: "You can't face the audience and hit drums directly behind you night after night at an extreme volume [referring to his monstrous drum kit that surrounded him with drums — Ed.]"

      The surgeon expects Vinny to be back behind the kit in about five months.

      HEAVEN & HELL singer Ronnie James Dio was just diagnosed with the early stages of stomach cancer while the band's guitarist, Tony Iommi, recently underwent stem-cell treatment on an injured hand.

      HEAVEN & HELL's debut album, "The Devil You Know", entered The Billboard 200 chart at position No. 8 with first-week sales of 30,000 units.

      The band's June 16, 2009 concert at Museumsmeile in Bonn, Germany was professionally filmed by WDR's (German public TV) series "Rockpalast" and was premiered on July 13. Watch the "Follow The Tears" performance below.

      HEAVEN & HELL was forced to cancel its June 21, 2009 appearance at the Metalway Festival in Zaragoza, Spain due to back pain suffered by Iommi.


      MiamiHerald.com has issued the following report/interview from John Hood:

      Murder never goes out of style. And when the victim is responsible for some of the best music in the American Hard Rock Songbook, well, people are gonna take extra notice. That's probably why folks have been flocking to catch ALICE COOPER's murder-themed stage shows for the past 40 years. We've got bloodlust.

      Naturally, an affinity for death isn't the only reason fans keep amassing to see Alice Cooper up close and unhinged. Crowds are there to hear such landmark hits as 'School's Out', 'I'm Eighteen', 'No More Mr. Nice Guy', 'You And Me' and 'Only Women Bleed'. But the staged gory scenes only complete the spectacle; they don't define it. There are many nightmares lurking deep within the recesses of our minds, and Alice Cooper is, er, dead set on bringing them all to life.

      Cooper released Billion Dollar Babies in 1973 and Welcome to My Nightmare in 1975 and has been unleashing depravity ever since. Last year we got Along Came A Spider, his 25th studio LP, and with it he revealed that the serial killer in him remains alive and unwell. Now he's back in South Florida with what he calls his Theatre of Death. The Miami Herald talked to him to find out who's killing whom.

      Q: What can fans expect from the tour?

      A: Well, you know we work six months out of the year, every year, all around the world. I got to the point of saying, 'You know what? I think everybody's figured out my formula now for the show. Let's turn it upside-down and backward. [This way] even the most staunch Alice Cooper fan will not be able to figure out what we're doing'. And so we did everything opposite of what we normally do. We added three or four new things to it. Let's say normally when they kill Alice, they do it at the end of the show. In this show they kill Alice four times."

      Read more at this location.

      BraveWords.com can report that according to guitarist Keri Kelli, Cooper's gig in London next week will be filmed in high-definition.

      Stay tuned for news on a possible DVD release of the show.

      BraveWords.com recently received the following press release:

      Concert Online records the live shows of Alice Cooper's Theatre Of Death Tour 2009 with a state-of-the-art mobile recording studio. To ensure maximum quality and listening pleasure, all tracks are recorded and mixed via elaborate multi-track audio technology.

      The live audio recording will then be edited and copied to the Theatre Of Death Concert Stick in highest MP3 quality (320 kBit/s) and is available on location directly after each show.

      From the day after the concert, the audio recordings are available online as well as a download or Concert Stick.

      How does the Concert Stick work?
      Just plug in your Concert Stick to any regular USB port on any regular PC or MAC, start the integrated audio player and listen to the very concert you’ve attended! Of course you can play the contained MP3 files on any device capable of playing back MP3s. On top, the Concert Stick functions as a 1GB USB 2.0 pen drive – please make sure to secure all contained data before you store additional content or erase the pen drive!

      Can I burn a CD from the files contained?
      Yes! It’s that easy: To ensure maximum playback compatibility, our 320 kBit/s MP3s are not copy protected.

      Where can I get my encores?
      As we need some time to finish the audio files and duplicate the Concert Sticks, the last few songs from each concert are available for download from the day after the concert. Therefore, every box contains a voucher code that enables you to download your encores for free!

      Hellfire II at Birmingham NEC was the venue, and in one of the small designated press areas we wedged ourselves alongside Blaze Bayley and his drummer Lawrence Larry Paterson. We had been looking forward to this one for a while so we weren’t going to hang about…

      OneMetal:Blaze Bayley… how the f**k are you mate?

      Blaze:Good Good, really looking forward to the show. We wouldn’t have chose to get it like we did, with Evile having to drop out, you know with Mike passing and everything.

      OneMetal:Of course…

      Blaze:It’s very sad news but we are really happy that they wanted us to go ahead and do it, and you know we are going to go and make the most of it, and have a really good show. I get the sense that there will be a lot of people here who aren’t familiar with the Blaze Bayley band, and what we’ve been doing over the last couple of years, so I’m really excited to play to new people and see how it goes.

      OneMetal:But surely, you are in Birmingham… it’s a homecoming?

      Blaze:Yeah hopefully, and I’ve never played the NEC before so that is a real bonus… even though it’s only Hall 8 (laughing)…

      OneMetal:Yeah but it’s still the NEC

      Blaze:Yeah yeah, it’s still the NEC so it’s absolutely great to be able to say that and all my family are really really chuffed about it. It only took me 20 minutes to get here (laughing) . It’s really, really cool.

      OneMetal:Come off it. I still cannot believe you have never played the NEC. You have fronted one of the greatest British bands ever…. Wolfsbane

      (laughing)

      OneMetal:We won’t mention any other bands you may have been associated with… anyway, you are where you are. Looking back would you have done anything differently?

      Blaze:Oooh well, I mean I wouldn’t do anything differently to what I am doing right now, because I feel we have something really special. We kind of got our groove together with “The Man Who Would Not Die” with this line up and now we have just taken a small break from the recording of the next album to do this and another couple of shows. There’s certainly a real identity to our sound and a real strong chemistry between the people in the band, and I think that comes through. Hopefully people will see that when they hear the next album in February, “Promise And Terror”. I wouldn’t really change anything, we have our Wolfsbane reunions every couple of years and its great that it’s still the original line up, that’s a lot of fun and that’s why we do it really.

      A lot of the time in Wolfsbane we ended up making ugly compromises with the record label and getting shafted by this that and the other, and the timing was never right… we never played abroad enough. So we just do it now for a laugh and a giggle, and to remember the good times. It’s a lot of fun to do that but what I am really doing is getting my own band together, and the Blaze Bayley band is something where we all share in the creativity and the triumphs and disasters. We have played all over, we started the tour in January in Brazil and then gone all over. We have done a live album and our own DVD . We have done everything on our own terms and nobody outside our little organisation has any say at all in that process. That’s a really great situation to be in. The only other time I was in a situation like that was when I was in Iron Maiden. They fought tooth and nail so that no one within EMI could have any say in the artwork, the albums or
      the music. So when I got to a situation where I could put my own band together and get a new line up I thought well, that’s the way I am going to do it. Everything on my own terms, and that’s what we do as a band. It’s a lot of sacrifice and effort, but it’s really satisfying and it gives you a real edge over some of the bands that don’t have that control.

      OneMetal:You are saying you have put together this line up… it’s not exactly been easy has it? I mean, I want to congratulate you on becoming the lead singer of Chokehold…

      (laughing)

      Larry: Yeah, well put.

      OneMetal:Obviously I mean with bringing in Larry and having Dave stand in.
      (laughing) Anyway, what I am getting at is are you a solo artist or are you part of a band?

      Blaze:Well yeah it’s really confusing, but it’s also really good. I started the Blaze band thing and all that but it just didn’t evolve into what I wanted, and I wanted to change the name as I found so many people recognised me personally and asked what I was doing. I’d tell them I have my own band called Blaze and they’d say well I don’t know, I’ve never heard of it. I was thinking that’s really s**t, so I changed the name after speaking to everybody. I said no one associates the name Blaze with the former singer from Wolfsbane and Iron Maiden. So the Man Who Would Not Die came out under Blaze Bayley and on that tour we played to twice as many people as we did before, and that was with no extra promotion.

      OneMetal:‘The Man Who Would Not Die’, is that self fulfilling, because after the Maiden stint you dipped off the radar somewhat. Was the ‘Man Who Would Not Die’ you saying here I am and I’m coming back?

      Blaze:Yeah, I agree and for the most part it’s not through any fault of my own. I mean I have had plenty of problems. The fact that I got Silicon Messiah album together and ready to release with artwork done and dusted to come out in January or February, and then through whatever reason it came out in the same week as Brave New World… I never recovered from that. The same thing happened to me with Tenth Dimension. The next album I did I thought I would get this ready for February, you know there’s no conflict with an Iron Maiden release, there’s no conflict with anything else. But the management I had at the time said no they wanted it for July, so I missed all the festivals that year, rushed things through, and when I did deliver it on time, on the budget, they said they’re not going to put it out now until later on. I was stuffed twice, and I could never recover from that. So when we got this band together we were not going to listen to
      anybody else. We will decide when we do things…

      OneMetal:Plus you have your own label…

      Blaze:Yeah we have our own label and we’ve said right, we are working on an album now and it will come out in February. That is it. If cattle prods have to be used on drummers to get them to get their parts right, then it will be done (laughing). .. People will be tortured. That’s what we’ve done, it’s going to come out on time, and it’s going to be fantastic, and it will have been done on our own terms. Our tour will go with our album… which isn’t rocket science, it’s what you are supposed to do. But since I have done my own thing post Maiden, none of the things have fitted into place until now. So we really have high hopes that we really have something to talk about with The Man Who Would Not Die, the live album and the new one Promise and Terror in February. Everything we are doing we are doing back to the roots, we are doing the small venues all over the UK and Europe where people haven’t got to drive for a couple of hours,
      haven’t got to pay a fortune for parking… could even go on the bus. We will be playing in a venue that they recognise, and when people see all of these things up close and personal that’s when our music comes to life.

      The way we work in this band is not “Let’s get huge gigs and play to thousands of people”. It’s more like “We will convert one fan at a time”. If we just get one more person at each gig… but if we get a big festival then that’s fantastic. But its one person at a time, if they listen with an open mind they will understand and get such an intense passionate vocal and something that is not afraid. We are not trying to conform to any trend, we are not trying to be fashionable. We’re just being what we are as these five musicians in a band. When people understand all that, it seems to go down really well.

      OneMetal:Talking of cattle prodding drummers and electrocuting them… Of course I am all in favour of that…

      Larry:Yeah you would be (laughing)

      OneMetal:I mean you have Larry here now, and the last time I caught up with him, he was in Chokehold and he was raving about the new Blaze line up… clearly he knew something we didn’t… now he’s jumped ship and joined you. Now he has gone and written a book about you… do you feel like you have your own personal stalker?

      (all laughing)

      Blaze:I think it’s worse than that… it’s much worse than that. I’ve let him stay at my house (laughing) so it’s really bad. It’s worse than a stalker because a stalker is generally outside your house looking in… he’s actually inside the house doing whatever he wants, leaving his drums everywhere.

      Larry: Now I’ve done the book I’ll leave(laughing)

      OneMetal:Yeah, are you going to go and find some other unsuspecting subject? How is the book actually doing?

      Larry: Yeah, doing good doing good, it seems to be going down really well .

      OneMetal:Anyway back to the band. You are having a few problems getting the other guys over and having stand ins. How are you going to progress from this?

      Blaze:Oh well we are just going to carry on. The only thing we have left to do on the album is the lead vocal and the mixing. So all of the main parts we have just worked around and it doesn’t seem to have been detrimental in any way. It doesn’t affect the album recording. It’s just a very inconvenient unpleasant fact of life. When we put it together we put it together for musical reasons not for practical reasons. We wanted to have the best music we could have and work with the best musicians we could, to make the sound we wanted. We didn’t think if everybody lives within a 15 mile radius then that will be a great advantage for the band, but it probably would have sounded c**p.

      OneMetal:Are you bringing in anybody from the outside?

      Blaze:We’ve got a couple of friends that we phone up when we have these problems. One of which is Dirty Dave, as you know former Chokehold guitarist and the other one is Luke from Fury

      OneMetal:It seems quite incestuous with all the band relationships.

      Blaze:It is yeah…

      OneMetal:I thought there was always more of an inter-band rivalry, but it seems to be always borrowing each other, shack up with each other, stalk each other… write books…you know?

      Blaze:Yeah yeah (laughing)

      Larry:Yeah that’s why we don’t let many people backstage (laughing)

      OneMetal:Well that just about sums it all up for us… although I have to ask you who are you looking forward to seeing?

      Blaze:Benediction and Beholder for definite, and although they have been around for ages I have never seen Anvil. Oh and as always Saxon… I’ve toured with Saxon, I’ve seen them so many times and you think I’m not going to watch them this time, but you hear the first song and you are hooked… then it’s the end of the set. I really enjoy seeing Saxon.

      OneMetal:Yeah well you and Saxon have similarities, you are both from the school of the bastions of British rock. Is there ever a time when you just thing, s**t, I’m getting too old for this?

      Blaze:No no, never… I think I just worry about not getting enough work in. Never think I am getting too old, I’m not ageist at all. I get really offended when people say “oh you dont want to be doing this when you are sixty”. I just think well what else would I want to be doing? What else would you want to do when you are doing something that you love ? Rock and Roll and entertainment in general has got a great history of people just carrying on until they feel like stopping, not until someone decides they should stop. I think that’s a really really good thing. In metal in particular you keep going as long as people are interested in hearing you and your ideas are still good.

      OneMetal:Excellent, good on you. The final question for you today though. What are your three top albums of the year?

      Blaze:Oh I dont know….My album, my album, my album (laughing)

      OneMetal:What about you Lawrence?

      Larry: Erm Motorizer, Motorhead, Saxon’s new one is pretty good, and I am anticipating the new Slayer one being b****y good. Everyone says its the bollocks. I havent heard it yet, but the last one was awesome. Yeah there’s quite a few good ones out at the moment.

      OneMetal:Excellent, thanks guys… good luck with the show and we’ll catch up with you next year.

      Melissa Arseniuk from Lasvegassun.com spoke with BUCKCHERRY frontman Josh Todd recently when the band was in Sacramento opening up for KISS.

      “After this tour’s over with we’re going to start making a new record so I’ve been writing on my days off,” he said.

      And he has no shortage of material.

      “I feel like we’re going through a transition,” he said. “There’s a lot of stuff going on with the world: We just got a new president; the green issue; and the 2012 predictions … There’s just a lot of stuff to write about.”

      “Right now I’ve been focusing on songs that kind of bring it all together,” he said. “I’m wanting to write a song that sort of incorporates all of that, all of our ambition, what we’re really working towards. I’m going to get a little deeper on this one so it’s going to be fun.”

      The newly revamped lineup of the NWOBHM band TOKYO BLADE, featuring Andy Boulton (guitar ) alongside John Wiggins (guitar) and bassist Andy Wrighton (bass), has announced the addition of singer Chris Gillen to the group's ranks. The band's new drummer will be announced shortly.

      TOKYO BLADE released the "Live In Germany" CD and DVD on October 27 through Razar Ice Records. The effort was recorded in November 2008 at the Keep It True festival in Würzburg, Germany during the band's "Die By The Sword" tour.

      "Live In Germany" was mixed and mastered by Sid Garcia at Sight 16 Studios in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

      The DVD contains bonus material, including tour rehearsal, candid footage with the band and additional live songs from throughout the 2008 tour.

      Keyboardist Jens Johansson (STRATOVARIUS, DIO, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN) has joined the list of guest musicians who will appear on the forthcoming release from EDGUY frontman Tobias Sammet's AVANTASIA project.

      Commented Tobias: "I've known Jens for years now; there has always been a friendship between EDGUY and STRATOVARIUS. We became friends when Jens was playing in the solo band of Timo Kotipelto when they joined EDGUY for a tour of South America some years ago. We got shitfaced on several occasions and Jens always captured any possible embarrassment with his Powershot G5.

      "He's a genius on his instrument — and beyond — and the stuff he played for me sounds amazing.

      "A lot of people can shred and play fast, but unlike most of them, every note that Jens plays is tasteful and exactly where it belongs.

      "I don't know if he is the fastest keyboarder in the world, but I'd like to think so. At least I have never heard a faster one."

      So far Tobias has confirmed the following musicians to be part of the forthcoming AVANTASIA opus:

      * Klaus Meine (SCORPIONS)
      * Tim "Ripper" Owens (JUDAS PRIEST, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, ICED EARTH)
      * Eric Singer (KISS, ALICE COOPER)
      * Michael Kiske (HELLOWEEN)
      * Jorn Lande (MASTERPLAN, ARK, MILLENIUM)
      * Bob Catley (MAGNUM)
      * Sascha Paeth
      * Felix Bohnke (EDGUY)
      * Alex Holzwarth (RHAPSODY, SIEGES EVEN)
      * Russell Allen (SYMPHONY X)
      * Jens Johansson (STRATOVARIUS, DIO, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN)

      AVANTASIA project will celebrate its comeback next year with a new epic masterpiece, to be released as two separate albums entitled "The Wicked Symphony" and "Angel Of Babylon".

      Regarding his decision to release the next AVANTASIA chapter in two separate CDs, Tobias said, "I have always given my very best, but this new chapter in AVANTASIA's history is too much and too ambitious to be just a regular album. I have worked on it for years now, and it has become even more than two albums!

      "I knew that story would be spread out over two albums back then when we started working on it in 2006, 'cause we had written a real rock opera of over 20 songs even back then. But since then, we kept composing, and out came even bigger and better material.

      "Looking at the music industry today with all the CD burning and downloading, I guess in the near future many of us traditional rock and metal bands won't be able to spend such a production budget. I am afraid I won't be able to afford so many guests and such a big production with orchestration and a choir and all that. That's why this production takes so much time; it may be the last big epic I will be able to afford, and I want it to be the biggest piece I have worked on so far."

      Kiske has appeared on every AVANTASIA album so far, including the first two full-length releases, "The Metal Opera" (2001) and "The Metal Opera Pt. II" (2002).

      On the topic of the new AVANTASIA album's musical direction, Sammet recently stated, "We've got quite many songs, and it ranges from epic ballads to metal opera. From pop to hard rock to folk to speed metal. My best friend, who co-wrote the story of 'The Metal Opera' back then, just listened to some of the tracks and he said that it will blow people away and enchant AVANTASIA fans and it will surely piss people off . . . It's just enchanting music. And these days honest and good music is kind of offending to some, that's pretty sick, isn't it? But as long as I get goose bumps hearing majestic music, I do not really care if I am fashionable or not."

      The most recent album from AVANTASIA, "The Scarecrow", was one of the 20 best-selling albums in whole Europe during the fourth week of January 2008, according to a press release.

      "The Scarecrow" was released on January 25, 2008 as a standard CD as well as rare picture (double) vinyl. It features a long list of guest musicians, including Bob Catley, ex-MASTERPLAN frontman Jorn Lande, ex-HELLOWEEN singer Michael Kiske, Alice Cooper, KISS drummer Eric Singer, SCORPIONS guitarist Rudolf Schenker and GAMMA RAY's Kai Hansen. The album produced a Top 10 German hit single, "Lost In Space", and entered the national charts in 15 countries, with the CD landing in the Top 10 in four countries.

      Former HELLOWEEN vocalist Michael Kiske is collaborating with American singer Amanda Somerville on a brand new melodic hard rock/metal project for Frontiers Records. Mat Sinner (PRIMAL FEAR, SINNER) and Magnus Karlsson (PLACE VENDOME, PRIMAL FEAR) are handling most of the songwriting for the CD, which is tentatively due in the spring/summer.

      According to the Kiske Official Fanclub, Sinner is currently overseeing the recording of Somerville's vocals at the Audiospezialist Studio in Stuttgart with drummer Martin Schmidt. Karlsson just laid down his parts at his own studio Stuntguitar in Sweden and Sander Gommans (AFTER FOREVER, HDK) will track additional guitar for the CD.

      This is the final track listing for the album (composers for each track listed in parenthesis):

      01. Nothing Left To Say (Mat Sinner & Magnus Karlsson)
      02. Silence (Mat Sinner & Magnus Karlsson)
      03. If I Had A Wish (Mat Sinner & Magnus Karlsson)
      04. One Night Burning (Mat Sinner & Magnus Karlsson)
      05. Arise (Sander Gommans & Amanda Somerville)
      06. End Of The Road (Mat Sinner & Jimmy Kresic)
      07. Don't Walk Away (Mat Sinner & Magnus Karlsson)
      08. Devil In Her Heart (Mat Sinner & Jimmy Kresic)
      09. Rain (Mat Sinner & Magnus Karlsson)
      10. A Thousand Suns (Sander Gommans & Amanda Somerville)
      11. Second Chance (Mat Sinner & Magnus Karlsson)

      Bonus Track:

      12. Set A Fire (Sander Gommans & Amanda Somerville)

      A promotional video will be also be made for the CD.

      Sinner told the Kiske Official Fanclub that a decision will be made in the next few weeks about who will handle the album artwork and who will helm the promotional clip.

      Somerville is the American singer-songwriter and vocal coach who was tapped to replace EPICA vocalist Simone Simons on the band's North American tour with SYMPHONY X due to Simons' health issues.

      Amanda was featured on KAMELOT's latest release, "Ghost Opera", and recently toured with AVANTASIA. She last year released her long-awaited solo album, "Windows".

      A Michigan native, Amanda has resided and worked mainly in Germany and the Netherlands since 1999. She has collaborated with several other bands in the metal scene along with producers Sascha Paeth and Miro, and co-wrote the rock opera "Aina". Her own music is of the pop-rock genre.

      Veteran Massachusetts metallers MELIAH RAGE will play their first show with returned frontman Mike Munro on Saturday, Febuary 20 at Club Whiplash in Stoughton, Massachusetts. Also appearing on the bill is STEEL ASSASSIN.

      "Masquerade", the new album from MELIAH RAGE, was released in September via Screaming Ferret/Metro City Records. The CD was recorded at The Outpost in Stoughton, Massachusetts and was mastered at last November by producer Rich Spillberg (WARGASM), who has worked with everyone from STEEL ASSASSIN to JOSH GROBAN. According to the group, "The music on the record is much faster and heavier than the past few records and features a guest appearance by METAL CHURCH frontman Ronny Munroe."

      After singer Paul Souza exited the band in late 2007, a six-month search for a suitable replacement began, which led to a dead end. That is, until producer Rich Spillberg suggested that they contact Munro and get back to their roots.

      Having left MELIAH RAGE over a decade ago, Munro is back for more, joining bandmates Anthony Nichols (guitar), Jim Koury (guitar), Darren Lourie (bass), and Stu Dowie (drums).

      Originally formed in 1985, MELIAH RAGE was often associated with the then-burgeoning thrash metal scene, which resulted in a major label contract and their 1988 metal classic, "Kill to Survive". In the ensuing years, the group played with some of metal's most renowned names — SLAYER, MEGADETH , TESTAMENT, MANOWAR, MORBID ANGEL, METAL CHURCH, and NUCLEAR ASSAULT. The group also included GODSMACK frontman Sully Erna in their ranks (as a drummer) during the early '90s.

      Former FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH and W.A.S.P. guitarist Darrell Roberts has launched a brand new new band/project called SINTANIC. A full CD of music is being recorded now, with hopes for a spring 2010 release date and extensive touring to follow. The album is being recorded at Darrell's home studio as well as The Steakhouse in North Hollywood, California with producer/engineer Brent Woods.

      "Starting something new is kinda scary and super-exciting at the same time," stated Darrell. "It's like standing at the bottom of Mt. Everest wearing flip flops!"

      After years of touring the world with some of the biggest bands on the planet, Roberts is finally doing things his way. "I mean no disrespect to anyone I have worked with in the past because I regret nothing!" he said. "It was invaluable, a learning experience and I thank you all for the opportunity, but it was really time to let my creative side roam free and record my music."

      With the Key Club in West Hollywood , California shutting its doors this Sunday forever, California rockers STEEL PANTHER will make the move for one special night only to The Roxy on Sunset. After several years making its home at the Key Club, the longest-running rock show on the Sunset Strip will be returning to The Roxy for one night only. The band will take the stage at 11:30 p.m.

      STEEL PANTHER will will begin its run at the House of Blues on Sunset on December 7.

      STEEL PANTHER's first collection of original material, "Feel The Steel", was produced by Jay Ruston and was officially released in the U.S. on October 6.

      STEEL PANTHER is the '80s metal/hard rock tribute act formerly known as METAL SKOOL. The four-member band, known for its outrageous stage presence and gargantuan guitar riffs, has been entertaining fans and scores of rock and entertainment VIPs with its raucous antics via L.A.'s longest-running heavy metal show on the Sunset Strip for nearly a decade.

      KYPCK ("Kursk" in the western alphabet) — the Russian-singing Finnish doom metal band featuring former SENTENCED guitarist Sami Lopakka (a.k.a. S.S. Lopakka) — has entered the studio to begin recording its second album. More details will be revealed soon.

      KYPCK's "Stalingrad" video can be viewed below. The song comes off the group's debut album, "Cherno", which was completed during 2007 and was originally released through the Finnish label UHO Production in March 2008. Despite the album's crushing, doomy nature and Russian lyrics, it went straight to No. 11 on the Finnish chart.

      KYPCK's lineup includes Lopakka, vocalist E. Seppänen, bassist J. T. Ylä-Rautio and renowned producer Hiili Hiilesmaa (HIM, APOCALYPTICA, SENTENCED, etc.), who plays drums in the band under the name K. H. M. Hiilesmaa. It was only logical for Hiilesmaa to take charge of KYPCK's heavy and (in its original sense) grinding production.

      E. Seppänen lived in Russia for 2.5 years, studied in St. Petersburg and worked at the embassy in Moscow. He got his degree from Oxford, and teaches Russian part-time in Tampere, Finland. Hence, he is more than capable of singing in Russian.

      In 2010, Belgian progressive metallers OCEANS OF SADNESS will celebrate their 15-year anniversary as a band and the 10-year anniversary of the release of their debut album, "For We Are". To commemorate this event, the group will play a special show on February 6, 2010 at JC Spin in Dessel, Belgium where they will play two sets, with the first part of the show concert consisting of a performance of the "For We Are" LP in its entirety and the second part of the gig featuring a mixture of material spanning the band's entire career. Only 400 tickets will be made available via www.jcspin.be.

      OCEANS OF SADNESS' fifth album, "The Arrogance of Ignorance" (2008), was produced by Jens Bogren at Fascination Street in Örebro, Sweden and contains 10 tracks. The album includes an additional guest appearance by Johan Liiva (formerly of ARCH ENEMY, HEARSE) on the track "In The End". Artwork was created by the Greek artist Seth Siro Anton.

      Swedish glam-rock band CRASHDIET has cancelled its previously announced Finnish tour dates as the support act for HARDCORE SUPERSTAR in order to focus on completing the recording sessions for its next studio album.

      Commented CRASHDIET in a statement: "We're truly sorry [about] this, but the making of our next album is way too far behind our recording schedule. To avoid postponing the album release, we have been forced to cancel the Finnish tour supporting HARDCORE SUPERSTAR. The good thing is that we'll be back in Finland on a headlining tour with a brand new ass-kicking album behind us during next year!"

      CRASHDIET entered the studio on Friday, November 13 with RamPac, the production and songwriting team formed by Johan Ramström and Patrik Magnusson, to begin recording its third album for an early 2010 release.

      CRASHDIET recently announced the addition of Simon "Simme" Cruz from the Stockholm act JAILBAIT as the group's new lead singer. A new demo track, "Caught In Despair", featuring the band's latest addition is available for streaming below.

      CRASHDIET parted ways with its last vocalist, the Finland-based H. Olliver Twisted, in July 2008. "We need a singer who can commit 100%, which unfortunately Olli couldn't live up to," the group stated at the time. "He, as many know about, has another band in Finland and we couldn't settle for sharing our time. We want to go further than any band has done before and we can't afford to spend time just waiting. We need to function as a full unit, all the time!"

      CRASHDIET's sophomore album, "The Unattractive Revolution", entered the Swedish chart at position No. 11 back in October 2007. The CD was mixed in the United States by Kevin Churko.

      "The Unattractive Revolution" features a guest appearance on two tracks by MÖTLEY CRÜE guitarist Mick Mars, who flew into Stockholm, Sweden in June 2007 to help CRASHDIET write some of the material.

      H. Olliver Twisted joined CRASHDIET as the replacement for David Hellman (a.k.a. Dave Lepard), who committed suicide in January 2006.

      Swedish metallers STEEL ATTACK are "back together again" and will perform at least one show with a lineup that includes members from the band's first two albums:

      Steve Steel (Stefan Westerberg) - Bass, Vocals
      John Allan - Guitar
      Dennis Westman - Guitar
      Andereas de Vera - Drums

      STEEL ATTACK will only play material from "Where Mankind Fails" (1999) and "Fall Into Madness" (2001). The group says, "We did our first rehearsal yesterday in 10 years and it sounded like we never been apart!"

      STEEL ATTACK recently parted ways with Ronny Hemlin (vocals), Peter Morén (drums) and Johan Löfgren (bass).

      "Crawl", the latest video from STEEL ATTACK, can be viewed below. The track comes off the group's most recent album, "Carpe DiEnd", which was released on February 22, 2008 via Massacre Records. The CD was recorded at KING DIAMOND guitarist Andy La Rocque's Sonic Train studio and it was mixed at Solnasound by Mike Wead (MERCYFUL FATE, KING DIAMOND).

      "Carpe DiEnd" is the follow-up to "Diabolic Symphony", which was released in April 2006 via Massacre.

      American power metal band IN VIRTUE will release its long-awaited debut CD, "Delusions of Grandeur", on December 11. The CD includes seven original tracks, with female vocals courtesy of Corinne Reif and death vocals by the band's lead guitarist and composer, Trey Xavier. According to the group, "Delusions of Grandeur" "combines our many influences set to lush arrangements to craft a unique and recognizable sound."

      A CD-release party/show will be held on December 11 at the Phoenix Theater in Petaluma, California.

      IN VIRTUE formed in 2004 at Sonoma State University when four friends with a love for fast and heavy music recruited a lady to sing lead. Soon the IN VIRTUE sound was born, a blend of finely composed melodic power metal and death metal.

      IN VIRTUE endeavors to blend catchy melody and anthemic choruses with aggressive energy and brutal symmetry to create balanced musical fusion.

      For more information, visit www.invirtue.net.

      BLABBERMOUTH.NET has received word from several people that singer /guitarist Michael Poulsen of Danish metal rock 'n' rollers VOLBEAT collapsed on stage earlier tonight (Sunday, November 29) during the band's performance at 013 in Tilburg, the Netherlands. According to one person who attended the concert, "Poulsen said at the beginning of the show that he was very ill but didn't want to disappoint the fans. About half an hour into the concert, during the song 'A Warrior's Call', Poulsen suddenly collapsed. He then was rushed to hospital. The [rest of the] concert was cancelled..."

      Video footage taken right after Poulsen collapsed on stage in Tilburg can be viewed below (courtesy of Rickwon).

      VOLBEAT recently entered Hansen Studios in Ribe, Denmark to record a song for Danish boxing champion Mikkel Kessler. Kessler is using the track, "A Warrior's Call", as an intro to his fights as part of the "Super Six" tournament.

      Poulsen is a huge boxing aficianado, so when Mikkel asked the band to write his theme song, they immediately accepted.
      Acclaimed Norwegian '90s melodic heavy rock band JACK IN THE BOX will play its first reunion show on March 19, 2010 at Gamla in Oslo, Norway.

      The group's current lineup is as follows:

      Eric Si (a.k.a. Lars Eric Si, Lars Eikind) (WINDS, BEFORE THE DAWN) - Vocals
      Rune Lamøy - Guitar
      Frode Lamøy - Drums
      Victor Borge - Bass
      Espen Helvig - Guitar

      JACK IN THE BOX was formed in 1990 by brothers Rune and Frode Lamøy. The band was discovered by TNT guitar player Ronnie Le Tekrø and released its first EP in 1993. Two years later, JACK IN THE BOX issued its full-length debut, "Stigma", a CD consider by many to be a Norwegian metal classic. A low-budget video for the song "French Fries For Breakfast" was also produced.

      JACK IN THE BOX ended in 1997 when Rune, Frode and Victor formed AUTOPULVER.

      For more information, visit the band's official web site at www.boxreborn.com.

      Greek atmospheric metal band SCAR OF THE SUN will support PAIN OF SALVATION in Greece:

      Jan. 23 - Athens, GRE @ Gagarin 205 Club
      Jan. 24 - Thessaloniki, GRE @ Principal Club Theater

      Also scheduled to appear at both shows are DISILLUSION (Germany), AGUA DE ANNIQUE (The Netherlands), LAKE OF TEARS (Sweden).

      SCAR OF THE SUN's debut album, "A Series of Unfortunate Concurrencies", was mixed and mastered by acclaimed sound engineers Rhys Fulber (FEAR FACTORY , PARADISE LOST, FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY) and Greg Reely (PARADISE LOST, FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY, SKINNY PUPPY) and features guest appearances by Mikael Stanne (DARK TRANQUILLITY), Bob Katsionis (FIREWIND, OUTLOUD), Marios Iliopoulos (NIGHTRAGE), Chris Antoniou (SEPTICFLESH) and Leah Randi (CONJURE ONE). The CD has yet to be released as the band is currently shopping for a record deal.

      For more information, visit www.scarofthesun.com.


      ATLANTIC TIDE, the new Swedish project featuring guitarist Freddie Eugene (UNLEASHED, TERRA FIRMA, LOUD PIPES, HARMS WAY) alongside ex-TERRA FIRMA bassist Izmo Ledderfejs and former BLACKSHINE axeman Stabel Miserabel, released its first-ever seven-inch single, "Bad Acid Queen", on November 16 through High Roller Records. The single, which includes the title track and a song called "Eyestroids", comes in two different versions — green and black — and features layout by Trident Arts. It is strictly limited to 500 copies.

      To get your copy, visit www.high-roller-records.de.

      ATLANTIC TIDE is:

      * Freddie Eugene (UNLEASHED, TERRA FIRMA, LOUD PIPES, HARMS WAY) - Guitar /Vocals
      * Izmo Ledderfejs (TERRA FIRMA) - Bass
      * Stabel Miserabel (BLACKSHINE) - Guitar

      ATLANTIC TIDE is currently working on material for a full-length album.

      For more information, visit the band's MySpace page.

      Former ELEGY/VENGEANCE singer Ian Parry has set "Species" as the title of the fifth and final part of the CONSORTIUM PROJECT concept story. Joining Ian in the studio will be KAMELOT drummer Casey Grillo, DAWN OF DESTINY bass player Jens Faber and INFINITY OVERTURE guitarist Niels Vejlyt, who has already laid down some ripping guitar tracks on a number of CONSORTIUM V songs during Ian's recent visit to Copenhagen in October.

      Newcomers to CONSORTIUM PROJECT are two female vocalists — Bulgarian rock singer Anna Lozanova and gothic metal vocalist Lene Petersen (INFINITY OVERTURE).

      Ian hopes to have the CONSORTIUM V "Species" album finished by the middle of next year, with a release — which will include his Consortium Quadrilogy — around September 2010.

      Commented Ian: "It is a challenge this time around to write and produce the best and heaviest of all five CONSORTIUM albums. I really want to emphasis the fact that in my conceptual story women save the world. This is why I want more involvement from the great female vocalists on CONSORTIUM V 'Species'.

      "It's great to have Casey Grillo back on drums doing an incredible job like he did on CONSORTIUM III and my solo CD, 'Visions', and this time I have a fantastic young kick-ass bass player Jens Faber completing the rhythm section. So with rip-roaring solos from Danish guitarist Niels Vejlyt, it's going to be a killer album with a mix of everything that is cool in rock and metal."

      CONSORTIUM PROJECT's video for the song "Enigma" can be viewed below. The track comes off the group's last album, entitled "Children of Tomorrow", which was issued in North America in July 2007 on ProgRock Records. The label also released Parry's last solo album, "Visions", which came out in Europe in 2006.

      Unlike Parry's previous CONSORTIUM PROJECT releases, "Children of Tomorrow" was said to be "a more diverse rock metal production with progressive elements reminiscent of his earlier productions." Parry spent more than a year on this epic production, writing, recording and mixing with former ELEGY bandmate/keyboard player Joshua Dutrieux. The songs were written as a collaboration between Parry, Dutrieux and the latest addition to the CONSORTIUM family, ex-WITHIN TEMPTATION drummer Ivar de Graaf.

      Vocalist Jason Hohenstein has announced his departure from the South Carolina-based extreme metal band LECHEROUS NOCTURNE. He says in a statement, "Many factors have played into this [decision], none of which more important than my family/home- life/job. The last tour I wasn't feeling it anymore and I owe it to LECHEROUS and every fan of LECHEROUS to not 'fake it.' 12-plus years of good times, great fans/friends, and what I still perceive to be great music .

      "I will still continue to support LECHEROUS and I know that they still have many years of great things ahead of them.

      "Thanks to everyone over the years who have shown tremendous support, and my family and friends for everything they have done.

      "I will still continue to be musically active... just not in the 'metal scene."

      LECHEROUS NOCTURNE is currently seeking a new vocalist. Interested parties should contact Kreishloff at lecherousnocturne@...,

      PRISTINA, the band featuring former members of 100 DEMONS, A THOUSAND FALLING SKIES and INVOCATION OF NEHEK, will release its long-delayed new album, "The Drought (Ov Salt and Sorrow)", in February 2010 via Bombfarm Records. The CD was recorded by singer Brendan K. Duff and Steve Austin (TODAY IS THE DAY), who also mixed and engineered the effort. Guest musicians on "The Drought" include Austin, Rennie Resmini (STARKWEATHER) and Scott Angelicos (BLOODLET).

      "The Drought (Ov Salt and Sorrow)" track listing:

      01. The Drought (Ov Salt and Sorrow)
      02. Moonshiner
      03. Temple of the Morning Star (TODAY IS THE DAY cover)
      04. Salt Water Cthulhu
      05. Because I Can Kill You

      The album will also be made available on limited-edition vinyl.

      In other news, PRISTINA is halfway finished with the songwriting process for another full-length, tentatively due in 2010. The as-yet-untitled CD will most likely be produced by Jimmy Bower of EYEHATEGOD/DOWN fame.

      PRISTINA recently welcomed a new second guitar player — J.P. Fernandes from singer Brendan's former band A THOUSAND FALLING SKIES.

      For more information, visit www.pristina666.com.

      Florida-based extreme metallers DIABOLIC have completed work on their fifth full-length album, "Excisions of Exorcisms", for a tentative February/March 2010 release via an as-yet-undisclosed label. The CD was recorded at D.O.W. Studios in Seffner, Florida with producer Juan "Punchy" Gonzalez (MORBID ANGEL, TERRORIZER, UNHOLY GHOST, live sound for NILE).

      "Excisions of Exorcisms" track listing:

      01. Excisions of Exorcisms
      02. Hellish World
      03. Entombed
      04. Venomous Habitations
      05. Evil in Disguise
      06. Bloodwashed
      07. False Belief
      08. Fragmented Kreations

      The album artwork is being completed by Joe Petagno (MOTÖRHEAD, MARDUK, KRISIUN, ANGELCORPSE).

      DIABOLIC's current lineup includes founding members Aantar Coates (drums), Paul Ouellette (bass, vocals), and guitarists Kelly McLauchlin (UNHOLY GHOST , PESSIMIST) and Jeff Parrish (BLASTMASTERS).

      DIABOLIC is scheduled to appear at the 20th-aniversary edition of the Michigan Deathfest on July 16-17, 2010 alongside DECEASED, NATRON, GODHATE, ACHERON, GODLESS RISING and more.

      For more information, visit www.diabolic-deathmetal.com.


      Greece's E-Rock.gr recently conducted an interview with vocalist Mikael Stanne of Swedish melodic death metallers DARK TRANQUILLITY. The interview is now available for streaming in two parts below.

      DARK TRANQUILLITY has set "We Are The Void" as the title of its ninth album, due in Europe on March 1, 2010 via Century Media Records. The drums for the CD were recorded at bassist Daniel Antonsson's studio, while the remaining instruments were tracked at Martin Brändström's (electronics) newly renovated Rogue music facility. The mixing duties are once again being handled by Tue Madsen (HALFORD, BEHEMOTH, KATAKLYSM, THE HAUNTED) at his Antfarm studio in Århus, Denmark. Working songtitles set to appear on the CD include "I Am The Void", "Zero Distance", "The Burden Of Love Alive", "Archangelsk" and "Memories In Reverse".

      Regarding the musical direction of the band's new material, DARK TRANQUILLITY previously said, "It's a bit too early to delve into details, but the material feels diverse and fresh and covers all the facets of the DARK TRANQUILLITY sound. Those who are familiar with our songwriting process know that we always keep re-arranging and experimenting with the material until the recording starts, and while we currently have the basic foundations for around 10 songs, many things are still open. The final result is likely to surprise ourselves as well as you people."

      DARK TRANQUILLITY,'s new DVD, "Where Death Is Most Alive", entered the Music DVD chart in the band's home country at position No. 1.

      The "Where Death Is Most Alive" CD/DVD was released on October 26 in Europe (November 17 in the U.S.) via Century Media Records. The footage was filmed on October 31, 2008 in Milan, Italy — a concert which makes up the DVD's main feature. Disc 1 contains 20 tracks recorded at the Milan show while disc 2 offers the "Out Of Nothing" DARK TRANQUILLITY documentary, another 21 rare live videos and all of the band's previously released promotional clips.

      "Where Death Is Most Alive" was released as limited kingsize mediabook 2DVD/2CD, 2DVD, 2CD and digital download. The audio formats consist of the main show's material, mixed by Tue Madsen.


      Swedish death metal veterans UNLEASHED have entered guitarist Fredrik Folkare's Chrome studio to begin recording their tenth full-length album for an early 2010 release via Nuclear Blast Records. According to the band, the musical direction of the forthcoming CD will be "the logical continuation from 'Midvinterblot' [2006] and 'Hammer Battalion' [2008]. Lyrically, you will recognize what has become the UNLEASHED trademark since more than 20 years, the combination of the past, present and future of viking struggle and way of life. A few of the songs also mark the beginning of a story never before told."

      UNLEASHED's ninth full-length album, "Hammer Battalion", was recorded in Sweden and produced by Folkare, "Hammer Battalion" took a battle-hardened axe to the misguided concepts of self-subjugation, transparent corruption and unneeded suffering in the name of religious figureheads and provides a perfect link between the ancient struggles of their Nordic forefathers and the ills of our modern society. The blistering "The Greatest Of All Lies" and "Long Before Winter's Call" took on old religious myths re-cast as pure fact, while "Your Children Will Burn" served as a warning of the consequences of blind faith. "Whatever is done in the name of different religions is often done against Mother Nature," noted vocalist/bassist Johnny Hedlund. "And she has the means of striking back."

      UNLEASHED's current lineup:

      Johnny Hedlund: Bass, Vocals
      Tomas Måsgard: Guitar
      Fredrik Folkare: Guitar
      Anders Schultz: Drums


      Steve Sylvester, vocalist of the legendary Italian heavy metal band DEATH SS, is working on an exciting new project — a horror movie called "The Devil's Graal". Steve is backed by Tsade (GURU OF DARKNESS) and Culto Prietsu (former member of MAYHEM). The technical side of project is handled by Extreme Video.

      HATESPHERE, ILLDISPOSED, LOUDBLAST and DARK AGE are among the confirmed bands for the Chaulnes Metal Fest, set to take place April 3-4, 2010 in Chaulnes, France.

      The festival billing is shaping up as follows:

      Saturday, April 3:

      HATESPHERE
      ILLDISPOSED
      BENIGHTED
      MISTAKEN ELEMENT
      OM MANI
      KRISTENDOM
      THRASH HEAVEN

      Sunday, April 4:

      LOUDBLAST
      DARK AGE
      BLACK SUN AEON
      OTARGOS
      FURIA
      KIM'S OVER SILENCE
      ARÈS
      SUPERTANKER

      For more information, visit www.myspace.com/chaulnesmetalfest.

      Austrian melodic death metallers DEVANIC are once again searching for a new lead guitarist. The band states, "After some months of working together with Erik [Bay, who joined the group in January 2009], the band decided that it doesn't make sense to go any further. So, if you are a lead guitarist and willing to compose and work on new material, don't hesitate to get in contact!"

      DEVANIC was formed in May 2004 by the group's now-former guitarist Nikolaus Vuckovic and vocalist Andreas Danzer "with the goal to play ambitious, catchy, multifarious and blasting melodic death metal. Nikolaus was looking for some people to realize his compositions, especially for someone to do the vocals. With Andreas, the right frontman was found. The songwriting, the lyrics and vocal arrangements of those two guys seem to be the perfect combination."

      DEVANIC's debut album, "Mask Industries", was released in April 2006.

      OV HELL, the new black metal project featuring DIMMU BORGIR vocalist Shagrath and ex-GORGOROTH bassist King, has completed work on its debut album, "The Underworld Regime", for a February 2010 release via Indie Recordings. The CD was recorded at Earshot Studio and features Shagrath on vocals, King on bass, Frost (SATYRICON) on drums, Ice Dale (ENSLAVED) on guitar and Teloch (NIDINGR, GOD SEED) on guitar. The album was produced by Herbrand Larsen and mastered at the Livingroom studios by Espen Berg and Shagrath in November 2009. King composed all of the music for "The Underworld Regime", while Shagrath wrote all lyrics, with contributions from Silenoz and Sarah Owens.

      "The Underworld Regime" track listing:

      01. Devil's Harlot
      02. Post Modern Sadist
      03. Invoker
      04. Perpetual Night
      05. Ghosting
      06. Acts of Sin
      07. Krigsatte Faner
      08. Hill Norge

      Commented Shagrath: "The majestic OV HELL has become a band that reflects our roots — raw, ugly, arrogantly blasphemous — with uncompromising truth from two influential Norwegian musicians needing to express our primitive side, straight out OV HELL."

      Added King: "It's been a little hell to actually see this music form into a band, but when I'm now listening to the final result, it has been worth the hard work we have put into this album!"

      Two rough-mix sample tracks from "

      Some of the dates on OBITUARY's South American tour are being rescheduled for January or February 2010 because of work visa issues.

      OBITUARY will perform the following shows in Brazil (with BELPHEGOR) next week as scheduled:

      Dec. 02 - Porto Alegre/RS - Brazil - Bar Opinião
      Dec. 04 - São Paulo/SP, Brazil - Hangar 110
      Dec. 05 - Belo Horizonte/MG, Brazil - Bar Brasil
      Dec. 06 - Brasilia/DF, Brazil

      The tickets that fans have purchased for the other South American dates are 100% valid for the rescheduled shows in 2010.

      According to the band, "Neither OBITUARY [no]or the promoters from Ecuador, Venezuela and Perú, are responsible for this inconvenience."

      "Live Xecution - Party.San 2008", the new concert DVD from OBITUARY, will receive a U.S. release in January 2010 via Regain. The footage for the disc was filmed at last year's Party.San Open Air festival, which was held August 7-9, 2008 in Bad Berka, Germany.

      Night Of The Vinyl Dead Records recently released a limited-edition vinyl version of OBITUARY's "Left To Die" EP. Only 500 hand-numbered copies were made available on hand-splattered bloody vinyl, including an insert.

      "Left to Die" contains four songs: two new originals ("Forces Realign" and "Left To Die"), a 2008 studio recording of "Slowly We Rot", and a cover of "Dethroned Emperor" by CELTIC FROST.

      For more information, go to this location.

      "Darkest Day", the new album from OBITUARY, landed at position No. 32 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.
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