THe Rolling Stones, Judas Priest, Steven Tyler, Stone Temple Pilots, Paul Stanley, Rob Zombie, Stephone Pearcy, Twisted Sister and tons more hard rock and heavy metal news
- Stones legend Mick Jagger -- still smarting from a pen-lashing by bandmate Keith Richards -- has set up a new supergroup with Eurythmics star Dave Stewart, Damian Marley, Joss Stone and Indian musician and producer A.R. Rahman.
Jagger, who was sharply and repeatedly needled in Richards' best-selling autobiography, "Life," has been secretly recording with Stewart, Bob Marley's youngest son, jazz-influenced Stone and Grammy-winning Rahman, dubbed "The Mozart of Madras," who won two Oscars for "Slumdog Millionaire."
A source said, "They just finished a record and their first video and are talking to major labels about a deal. The name for the band at the moment is Super Heavy." Another source said, "Each member has a very distinct and different style, but it works. Mick has been recording with Dave for a while, and both worked with Joss in the past."
But a rep for Jagger told us, "They all thought it would be interesting and great fun to go into the studio and play some music. No video has been shot, no label in place. All a bit premature."
But if the band is a hit, it could further divert Jagger's attention from a speculated-about new Stones tour -- especially since there's currently no love lost between him and Richards, whose 2010 book was particularly withering about Jagger's solo career.
Of Jagger's first effort sans the Stones, 1985's "She's the Boss," Richards wrote, "I've never listened to [it] the whole way through. Who has? It's like 'Mein Kampf.' Everybody had a copy, but nobody listened to it."
Jagger's subsequent solo effort " 'Goddess in the Doorway' . . . was irresistible to rechristen 'Dog [Bleep] in the Doorway' . . . [Mick] says I have bad manners on the subject. But this record deal of Mick's was bad manners beyond any verbal jibes." Richards also wrote that Jagger, whom he nicknamed "Your Majesty," is packing "a tiny todger."
"Sometimes I think, 'I miss my friend,' " wrote Richards. "Where did he go?" Into the studio with someone else, it appears.
The Rolling Stones' Keith Richards has revealed that he has been working on a new X-pensive Winos album.
The guitarist appeared as a guest on US TV show Late Night With Jimmy Fallon yesterday (May 12). On it he explained that he had already geared up sessions with songwriter/producer Steve Jordan for the new album – which will be his first under the moniker since 1992's 'Main Offender'.
The X-pensive Winos name is one Richards used for the collectives he assembled for his 1989 solo album 'Talk Is Cheap' and for 'Main Offender'. He said that the new sessions were "starting to blossom" but didn't reveal any new release plan.
Richards also suggested that he was still trying to get the rest of The Rolling Stones to work on new material together, saying: "I'm trying to nail them down but I don't want to crucify them."
Charlie Watts will be appearing with the ABCD of boogie woogie at the Jazz Club in Dean Street, London on Friday 24th and Saturday 25th June, two shows each day.
All five members of JUDAS PRIEST — Rob Halford, Glenn Tipton, Ian Hill, Scott Travis, and the band's latest addition, 31-year-old guitarist Richie Faulkner (LAUREN HARRIS, DIRTY DEEDS) — took part in a press conference this afternoon (Tuesday, May 24) at the Renaissance Hotel at Highland and Hollywood in Los Angeles to answer questions about the upcoming "Epitaph" U.S. tour and to formally introduce Faulkner. During the event, it was revealed that JUDAS PRIEST will release the "Single Cuts" CD-singles box set and the "Classic Albums Collection" later this year containing the following material:
1. "Single Cuts" CD-singles box set:
* The complete U.K. CBS/Columbia singles from 1977-2008 featuring all 7" and 12" tracks.
* All singles will carry original artwork.
* This box will only be available online and sold through the official JUDAS PRIEST web site.
* Fans can pre-order the box starting in June; the product will ship later in the summer.
2. The "Classic Albums Collection":
* Timed for the start of the U.S. tour
* Box set featuring all the albums from the classic lineup years, including first two Gull records
* Includes 17 albums (19 discs in total)
* All remastered albums with original artwork
British heavy metal legends JUDAS PRIEST are strongly rumored to be performing during tonight's (Wednesday, May 25) season 10 "American Idol" finale. They are expected to hit the stage with James Durbin, the 22-year-old rocker from Santa Cruz, California, who was eliminated from "American Idol" earlier in the month but who will reportedly make a return appearance during tonight's broadcast.
Durbin performed a cover version of the JUDAS PRIEST classic "You Got Another Thing Coming" on the March 1 edition of "Idol". His rendition (see video below) marked the first time, according to AEROSMITH singer and "American Idol" judge Steven Tyler, where a JUDAS PRIEST single was performed on the "Idol" stage.
Although producers have kept a tight lid on what surprises are in store for the two-hour show, the Hollywood Reporter reported that in addition to U2's Bono and the Edge performing with castmembers from the Broadway musical "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark", Beyoncé and Lady Gaga will take the stage.
Lady Gaga recently confirmed she wrote her new track "Judas" about a former lover who "loved JUDAS PRIEST, loved heavy metal."
In an interview with Britain's MTV, she said, "I've had lots of ex-boyfriends betray me — assholes, we all have them — and in particular there was one who loved JUDAS PRIEST, loved heavy metal.
"Originally, I began to write the song about an ex-lover, who betrayed me, who loved heavy metal music and then as I started to write the lyrics, I thought about Judas and the biblical implications and how Judas was the betrayer. So I thought of a more beautiful and liberating way to tackle the message of the song — we attack the idea by saying my ex-boyfriend betrayed me and this person in my life haunts me but I forgive them and we'll move on to make room for what's good."
All five members of JUDAS PRIEST — Rob Halford, Glenn Tipton, Ian Hill, Scott Travis, and the band's latest addition, 31-year-old guitarist Richie Faulkner (LAUREN HARRIS, DIRTY DEEDS) — took part in a press conference yesterday afternoon (Tuesday, May 24) at the Renaissance Hotel at Highland and Hollywood in Los Angeles to answer questions about the upcoming "Epitaph" U.S. tour and to formally introduce Faulkner.
When asked if the band has had a chance to collaborate on any new material with Faulkner, Tipton said, "We haven't yet, no. It's really early days. We're still in the process of rehearsing [for the upcoming tour], and that's taken a whole lot of time, and then we had to come over here… for something. I can't say [what]."
Robert and Dean DeLeo of STONE TEMPLE PILOTS will join AEROSMITH frontman and "American Idol" judge Steven Tyler on stage during tonight's (Wednesday, May 25) season 10 "Idol" finale, airing live from Nokia Theater in Los Angeles, California. In addition, JUDAS PRIEST will perform with James Durbin, the 22-year-old rocker from Santa Cruz, California, who was eliminated from "American Idol" earlier in the month but who will reportedly make a return appearance during tonight's broadcast.
Although Tyler's performance at the event has not been officially confirmed by Fox, multiple blogs report that AEROSMITH's "Dream On" was heard during rehearsal on Tuesday.
Despite Tyler's recent insistence that AEROSMITH would play the "American Idol" finale, AEROSMITH guitarist Joe Perry said in a recent online posting that the band was "never asked by producers" to perform at the event. He added that "Brad [Whitford, AEROSMITH guitarist] has a gig that night with [Experience Hendrix]. It's not logistically possible."
Perry did write that AEROSMITH is "looking forward to playing 'American Idol' next season when our new CD is out and we can prepare [for] a kick-ass show if they ask us."
KISS guitarist/vocalist Paul Stanley will guest on tomorrow night's (Thursday, May 26) edition of "Lopez Tonight", comedian George Lopez's talk show on TBS.
Paul is said to be a huge fan of George and the program and might even join the band for a song.
The show, which premiered in November 2009, features audience interaction using a high-energy format. The program airs Monday through Thursday at 12:00 a.m. (midnight) Eastern/9:00 p.m. Pacific in the United States.
For more information, visit www.lopeztonight.com.
A Conversation with Rob Zombie
Mike Ragogna: Hey, Rob, how are you?
Rob Zombie: I'm good. How are you doing?
MR: I'm pretty good. What have you been up to lately?
RZ: Well, I've been up to a lot of things. Last week, I finished shooting a special for Comedy Central, starring my friend Tom Papa. It's his first stand-up comedy special that he's doing live in New York. So, I just wrapped that up last week, and a couple of weeks before that, I was in Vancouver to direct a commercial for, of all things, Woolite. Before that, I had just gotten back from Australia, where I was doing some touring with Iron Maiden--yeah, I'm busy.
MR: You have drummer Ginger Fish with you?
RZ: Yes. Ginger has not actually toured or played with us yet. He did a couple of warm-up shows a couple of months ago, right before we left for Europe, but our other drummer, Joey Jordison, who was on load from Slipknot, was our drummer at the time. The dates got crossed and Ginger was just filling in, but since that time--I don't know if it's just because Ginger had so much fun with us when we were on tour--he quit Marilyn Manson, and was free. Our other drummer, Joey, had to go back to Slipknot, so--1,2,3.
MR: You have this major European tour coming up, right?
RZ: Yeah, it starts June 1st in Germany.
MR: How long is that tour going to last?
RZ: It's not that long, only about five weeks or so.
MR: You tour pretty often, but you're also way busy. How do you fit in all--the recording, touring, film making, and commercial shooting?
RZ: Well, it's not easy. What's happening right now is that as soon as we're done touring, I'll start my next film. Since there is a long lead time, I've been working with the effects departments and stuff between my tours, so they're sort of prepping. Then, I'll go off and tour, and then I'll come back from a tour, do a little more prep and location scouting, then finish my tour and start full-blown pre-production on the movie. That will take me through the rest of the year. Once that is wrapped up, I'll probably go right into making a record, and by next summer, I'll probably be right back out on tour. As soon as one thing ends, I just start in on the next thing.
MR: The movie you were talking about is The Lords Of Salem?
MR: Can you give us any hints or clues about it?
RZ: Sure. That will be something that I will probably start towards the end of August. It's a horror movie, but it's a very different kind of horror movie than the films I've done in the past. Everything I've done in the past has been a very physically violent type of film, and this is more of a dark, psychological, sort of Roman Polanski-style film. It's very different for me, so I'm very excited about it. It's more of a ghost story based around the mythology of the Salem witch trials.
MR: When you direct, do you take your script and edit it to what you think you need in the film as you go along?
RZ: Not really because I've written all the scripts I've ever directed, so I guess I'm kind of doing that as I'm writing. I've never directed anything from someone else's material.
MR: Is that something you see yourself doing?
RZ: I would. There have been very few times that a script has come to me and I was like, "Yes, that's something that I want to do," but for whatever reason, it didn't work out. Most of the time, I get scripts that I'm just not interested in or I don't see the point of doing. A lot of times in Hollywood, they hire a certain director, but then put them with material that doesn't really showcase what is great about the director. I'm not opposed to it--I just haven't found the right project, I guess.
MR: I imagine you're one of those people that studios would have gone to over and over again because of the success of your films and also because of your visual style.
RZ: I've had a lot of meetings and a lot of dealings with people on different things, but maybe because all of my movies are written by me, they just assume that's the way it is.
MR: You also have the "Hell On Earth" tour, that's going to be hitting North America with Slayer, right?
RZ: Correct, yeah.
MR: Might you record that tour for a future live album?
RZ: Probably not. We put out a live record not that long ago, and I don't think we would do another one until we have at least another album's worth of new material. For some reason, over the years, I've never been that big on recording things. I should have been, but we never made a live DVD either.
MR: Now, you also directed that commercial for Woolite. How did that come about?
RZ: Just one of those things. I was in Australia, on tour, and the ad agency called my manager saying that they had this commercial they were pitching to Woolite and they were really interested to see if I would be the director for the commercial. It wasn't something that I had ever thought about or searched out, it was just something that came to me. I took a look at the material and thought it would be cool. I like the idea of doing different projects, like when I did the episode of CSI. You always want to get these different types of things under your belt for the experience, and I had never done a TV commercial, so I figured why not start now?
MR: What did you do with it?
RZ: Well, it was a very weird commercial to begin with. They wanted a commercial that seemed as if it was a horror movie trailer. Their plan was to play it in theaters also, so the beginning of the commercial sounds like a horror movie with this sort of mysterious guy in the woods and it seems like he's dragging a dead body around. You find out he's dragging laundry, and he's torturing clothes. Then, this whole thing comes in about, "Don't let detergents torture your clothes." At the end of the spot, there are these nice scenes of women shopping, doing yoga, and stuff. I actually had more fun doing the nice scenes because it was something really different and something I found interesting. The beginning part of the commercial is not that odd--it's very odd for Woolite, but it's not odd for me. I wanted people to see the back half of the commercial and think, "Oh my God. I wouldn't think that he could or would do that stuff."
MR: Let's discuss your friend's comedy special, Tom Papa in New York City. It seems like a lot of comedy specials are pretty generic or formulaic, so how did you add Rob Zombie-ness to it?
RZ: That was Tom's thing too. Tom said he wanted to make a comedy special that looks how he remembered Richard Prior on Sunset Strip looking or an old Steve Martin concert. You can only do so much--it is a concert, and it's about Tom's performance. We were watching stuff and went, "Well, the way they shoot comedy specials now, they're so bright and so clean. They overlight the audience, they overlight everything, there is no mystery." We wanted it to look like the old days--the audience was dark, you could see them a little bit, it was smoky because everybody was still smoking, and he's in a spotlight beam--a big concert, vintage feel. We kind of went backwards in our approach to it and it turned out great. It looked like this big concert and it feels very old school. Even within that, though, we had these wraparound bits we did of Tom walking to the stage, passing these other vaudevillian performers--we wanted to make it feel like we shot it in the '60s
or something. It was sort of a Broadway Danny Rose approach to the beginning part.
MR: Who are some of your favorite directors out there?
RZ: There are so many genius directors...I go through phases. You kind of get caught up on people. I love Werner Herzog, who is one of my favorite directors because the things he's done are so insanely out there. I love Stanley Kubrick because I think that there is nobody who is more meticulous in creating films. I love John Huston, I love Akira Kurosawa, I love Russ Meyer. I don't know--Fellini, Spielberg, Scorsese. I love so many different directors.
MR: Do you have a favorite film?
RZ: My favorite film is A Clockwork Orange.
MR: Beautiful. Rob, I have a radio broadcast journalist student in the room with me and he slipped me a question--feel free to answer it or not--he asks, "What was your childhood like?"
RZ: Pretty wide open question. My childhood was not unlike my movies, in a certain sense. I usually draw on the way I remember things as a kid. I had a pretty crazy family. All my relatives were pretty nuts, and the line of work that everybody was in when I was a kid in the '70s--I don't know if anyone's ever seen that movie, Carny, with Gary Busey, but that was essentially my childhood. My family worked on these traveling carnivals for a living. My parents, grandparents, cousins, uncles...they were all the people that ran the concession stands, rides, the gambling tents, and everything. So, that was the childhood that I remember in the '70s. As I got older, we didn't do it anymore, but as a kid, that's where we were spending all of our time. As a kid, I loved that movie because that is just what it was like.
MR: Terrific movie. The freakish moments of it aren't scary, just uncomfortable, you know?
RZ: That's what I like about it. That's just a weird snapshot of that time period. So, that's how I remember growing up, going on the ferris wheel a million times, or the haunted house because your family is who runs everything. Then, when I was in fourth grade, I had to work there, and stuff. You know, it was crazy.
MR: Rob, what advice do you have for new artists?
RZ: That depends what field they are entering.
MR: Well, how about a field like what you're doing?
RZ: Well, my only advice to anybody is don't quit, and f**k everybody else. Every single person will tell you you're terrible, that what you want to do is a bad idea, that it will never work, and that it will never happen, so why even bother? That's because everyone's biggest fear is that you will become a success, and they will try everything within their power to try to dissuade you from doing it. I think, for the most part, all the people I know who are successful are the ones who just sort of blocked that out and did it anyway. I know a lot of people who are super talented, but just never did anything with their lives because for whatever reason they just didn't do it. You know these musicians or artists, and they work in a show store. You just go, "Well, what happened?" You just have to have a bizarre work ethic to push forward.
MR: One more question, what's different in how you see Rob Zombie now and the Rob Zombie of White Zombie?
RZ: I don't know if there is a major difference. The more experience you have with things, the more relaxed you get with them because you've done it. When you're going through things, everything seems like the end of the world when you're going through your first video, tour, or other thing. You tend to relax and trust your instincts more as you get older because you've done it many times. Say you're shooting a movie. Someone who is inexperienced might be like, "Oh my God. I need to do another take, and another take, and another take," because they're so unsure of themselves. But once you've done it a few times, you get that feeling in your gut and you know. So, you go, "We got it. We're moving on." It's just sort of the basic feeling of that, you know?
MR: Beautiful. Rob, thank you so much for your time today. I really appreciate it.
RZ: No problem.
Transcribed by Ryan Gaffney
RATT frontman Stephen Pearcy is continuing work on his solo album, "Sucker Punch", tentatively due later in the year. He writes on his web site, "Working on lead vocals and guitar solos on a few songs. A special guest may appear on a song that will blow your minds!" The CD's first single, "Don't Want To Talk About", was released earlier this month digitally via iTunes.
In other news, Pearcy's management is currently "entertaining publishers" for the singer's first book. Stephen says, "[I am] working on a few rough chapters as we speak!"
Pearcy will hit the road in September as part of the "Metal In America" tour. The singer's touring band includes an impressive pedigree of rock alumni consisting of drummer Greg D'Angelo (ex-WHITE LION), guitarist Greg Walls (ex-ANTHRAX), bassist Mike Duda (W.A.S.P.) and guitarist Erik Ferentinos (ANTIDIVISION; signed to Pearcy's Top Fuel Records). Stephen writes, "Rehearsals to start in a few days for the warm-up shows. We'll film some of the rehearsals and post so you can meet the band and check out a song or two!"
The "Metal In America" tour is expected to include material from RATT's deep catalog of classic rock anthems and Pearcy's impressive solo material.
For tour date information, visit www.stephen-pearcy.com.
Pearcy recently recorded a new version of RATT's '80s hit "Wanted Man" for "Big John's Rock N Lock", the new show featuring world-famous rock and roll bodyguard "Big" John Murray, celebrity reality star of VH1's "Rock Of Love".
Pearcy posted a message on Twitter in March stating that RATT will remain inactive for the remainder of 2011 while he pursues other projects, including the release of a new solo album. He said, "RATT with me involved will not be active [in] 2011, maybe longer. No new record, tour, or life with me until things are back on track! Until then, M.I.A."
Recently reported, Twisted Sister has dusted off their classic glam metal debut, 1982's Under the Blade, and have remastered/expanded it, to include a vintage performance from the 1982 Reading Festival in England, as well as bonus tracks.
To mark this occasion, Twisted Sister's guitarist, Jay Jay French, agreed to navigate carefully through the sometimes-treacherous waters of the Short-But-Sweet Interview.
UGO: How heavy is the reissue of Under the Blade?
JAY JAY FRENCH: The digital remaster is, for the first time, from the original Secret Records masters 2-track tape. It is as close to owning the original master tape of Under the Blade as you can technically get at this point and time. You also get the legendary 4 song Ruff Cutts EP and a live track from the Reading Festival performance that was rarely ever available. It is a dream package as far as SMF's are concerned.
UGO: How would you rate the Reading performance among the greatest shows that Twisted Sister ever did?
JAY JAY FRENCH: The Reading performance was historically extremely important as it really is our introduction to the world of rock festivals in general and the UK/Europe festival scene in particular. As far as to how much better the playing is vs. another performance at the time? That's too hard to say as we were and remain consistent in terms of the high level of performance criteria that we use to gauge relative performance levels. This is solely due to the fundamentals that we learned in the 10 years of bar band period. You do get however to see Pete Way, Fast Eddie, and Lemmy perform with us, and that is VERY SPECIAL!
UGO: Is the story about an irate concert goer throwing doo-doo up on stage during your set at the Reading Festival really true, or is it a fabrication?
JAY JAY FRENCH: True.
UGO: What's up next for Twisted Sister, and what are the chances of the group recording an all-new studio album?
JAY JAY FRENCH: We are unique in that we are only one of five bands remaining at our level from our era that perform with the original album line up (Aerosmith, ZZ Top, Rush and Motley Crue are the other four). We continue to play around the world as the demand calls for it. This year we will play in Russia, Greece, Spain, England, Finland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Mexico, and 2 shows in the US. There will be no new music as far as I can see at this point, and the end of the band can come as early as the end of this year.
It is not a hype for me to say that the last posted show may be the last show. The reunion has gone on for much longer then I anticipated and can't go on forever. This is not a threat. It is how I look at the band. As every festival season ends, I assume that it will be done. The band members themselves are all over the place on this one. Some would play until they can't stand, some would just as soon retire tomorrow. I don't think that bands that have been around nearly 40 years are all that different in this regard. It has been a great run. It surpassed my wildest dreams that we would come back and be embraced around the world and become one of metal's greatest festival closers in history.
There is really nothing left to prove. We consistently get the best reviews compared with all the other bands we play with. For me, we have blown off the stage every band that we ever cared to be compared with. It has always been a very predatory approach to performance. This is why we headline and get paid what we get paid. Don't be naive and think that most bands don't feel this way. The festival world is like the Roman Coliseum. It's kill or be killed. Personally, if I can no longer attain that much satisfaction then no amount of money will keep me going. Many bands are criticized for "doing it for the money". I can say this - "I have never phoned in a performance," in my life. The day that that changes is the day I will walk away.
UGO: Who had the most awesome mane of hair in the '80s and why - Dee Snider, David Lee Roth, or Howard Stern?
JAY JAY FRENCH: Dee, if it's just between those three.
UGO: Is Ryan Seacrest a crucial component to the success of American Idol, or is he simply the luckiest person in the history of television?
JAY JAY FRENCH: I'm not a fan of the show but I thought that Simon was. This year the show has held onto its audience without him but I always thought the premise was lame. The voice is far superior in every way.
According to HMV Japan and Amazon Japan, legendary guitarist Michael Schenker will release a new album titled "Temple Of Rock" on July 27 in Japan.
The CD will reportedly feature guest appearances by the following musicians:
* Slash (GUNS N' ROSES, VELVET REVOLVER) - Guitar
* Rudolf Schenker (SCORPIONS) - Guitar
* Pete Way (UFO) - Bass
* Neil Murray (BLACK SABBATH, WHITESNAKE) - Bass
* Chris Glen (MSG) - Bass
* Simon Phillips (TOTO, THE WHO, JUDAS PRIEST) - Drums
* Carmine Appice (KING KOBRA, VANILLA FUDGE, ROD STEWART, JEFF BECK, OZZY OSBOURNE, BLUE MURDER) - Drums
* Chris Slade (AC/DC) - Drums
* Don Airey (DEEP PURPLE, RAINBOW) - Keyboards
* Michael Voss - Vocals
* Myles Kennedy (ALTER BRIDGE, SLASH) - Vocals
"Temple Of Rock" track listing:
02. How Long
03. The End Of An Era
04. Saturday Night
05. Fallen Angel
06. Hangin' On
07. With You
08. Miss Claustrophobia
09. Scene Of Crime
10. Lovers Sinfony-Speed
11. Stormin' In
13. Before The Devil Knows You're Dead
14. How Long (guitar battle version)
15. Remember (bonus track for Japan)
EXODUS, DESTRUCTION and HEATHEN will join forces for the Thrashfest Classics European tour, set to take place in November/December. The trek, whose "headliner" will be announced on August 20, will feature EXODUS performing material from the "Bonded By Blood", "Pleasures Of The Flesh" and "Fabulous Disaster" albums; DESTRUCTION playing songs from "Sentence Of Death" and "Infernal Overkill"; and HEATHEN performing selections from "Breaking The Silence" and "Victims Of Deception".
Commented the tour's promoter, Rock The Nation: "Back to the Eighties, back to the roots! Tour promoter Rock The Nation turns back the time for you headbangers, catapulting you back into the glorious Eighties — the unforgettable days of prime for thrash metal — with a phenomenal package of top acts. Hardly another period of time carries so much metal history with it than this one. Rough, rapid and impulsive sounds dominated the whole music-industry at that time. Breath-taking masterpieces of metallic art, which still enjoy authority and significance these days, emerged out of the creative urge of charismatic musicians and bands. Now the time is right to let the flair, the feeling and the sounds rise again! Thrashfest Classics is a pure celebration for the high-culture of thrash metal. Some of the most influential combos will perform their cult albums in full length."
For more information, visit www.thrashfest.eu.
Swedish progressive metallers OPETH have set "Heritage" as the title of their tenth album, due in September via Roadrunner Records. The CD was recorded earlier this year at Atlantis studios (formerly Metronome studios) in Stockholm. Mixing duties were handled by Steven Wilson (PORCUPINE TREE) and OPETH vocalist/guitarist Mikael Åkerfeldt. The new material has been described by the band as "good."
OPETH's last album, "Watershed" (2008), sold more than 19,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 23 on The Billboard 200 chart. Its predecessor, "Ghost Reveries", debuted at No. 64 on the Billboard chart back in September 2005 with first-week sales of just under 15,000. OPETH's 2003 album, "Damnation", opened with a little over 5,000 copies.
Keyboardist Per Wiberg was relieved of his duties as a member of OPETH last month as part of a mutual decision with the band. Keyboard duties on upcoming tours will be handled by a musician who is already rehearsing with the group. Said musician’s identity will be released at a later date.
Åkerfeldt released the following statement on the matter: "Well, it's been somewhat of a revolving door of members during the last couple of years, and now Per is no longer a member. [Martin] Mendez [bass], Axe [Martin Axenrot, drums] and Fredrik [Åkesson, guitar] and I came to the decision that we should find a replacement for Per right after the recordings of the new album, and this came as no surprise to Per. He had, in turn, been thinking about leaving, so you could say it was a mutual decision. There's no bad blood, just a relationship that came to an end, and that's that. We wish Per the best, and he did a splendid job recording keyboards for the last record, which stands as his final recording with OPETH."
As part of the celebration of their 20th anniversary, OPETH released live footage and audio from the band's performance at London's famed Royal Albert Hall. The concert (recorded on April 5, 2010) included two sets, the first consisting of the band performing 2000's now-classic, breakthrough epic "Blackwater Park" in its entirety, and the second, a chronologically arranged selection of material from the rest of OPETH's extensive catalogue, totaling almost three hours of music. "In Live Concert At The Royal Albert Hall" is, like the rest of OPETH's greatest work, "purposefully warped in all the right places" (Decibel). The front cover artwork concept pays tribute to DEEP PURPLE's "Concerto for Group and Orchestra", underlining the band's longstanding love for their prog-rock roots.
Los Angeles cyber metallers FEAR FACTORY will take part in an in-store signing session on June 10, 2011 at Soundcheck Hollywood in West Hollywood, California beginning at 7:00 p.m.
For more information, see the flyer below.
In a January 2011 interview with SkullsNBones.com, FEAR FACTORY vocalist Burton C. Bell stated about the band's plans to go into the studio to record the follow-up to last year's "Mechanize", "We're gonna kind of take a break a little bit, but we're definitely going into the studio at some point and start writing. We wanna take our time doing it. Personally... 'Mechanize', don't get me wrong, is a good record — I'm very proud of it — but it's gotta be better than that. I've got plans where I'd like to do a full-on concept again — story, artwork. Just make it real cerebral. But there'll definitely be another FEAR FACTORY record, maybe in 2012."
FEAR FACTORY in December completed "The Industrial Discipline Tour" of Europe with HIGH ON FIRE.
"Mechanize" was released in the U.S. on February 9, 2010 via Candlelight Records. The CD, which was co-produced by the band with Rhys Fulber (FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY, PARADISE LOST), was mixed by Greg Reely (PARADISE LOST, FRONT LINE ASSEMBLY, SKINNY PUPPY).
FEAR FACTORY's current lineup — featuring original FF members Dino Cazares (guitar) and Burton C. Bell (vocals) alongside bassist Byron Stroud (who was credited on the last two FEAR FACTORY albums in addition to touring and recording with STRAPPING YOUNG LAD and ZIMMERS HOLE) and legendary drummer Gene Hoglan (DETHKLOK, STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, DARK ANGEL, DEATH, TESTAMENT) — made its live debut on December 4, 2009 at Espaço Lux in São Bernardo do Campo, São Paulo, Brazil.
In Flames' new album, 'Sounds of a Playground Fading,' is the first in the Swedish metal band's 21-year career without founding guitarist Jesper Stromblad. After In Flames' last record, the guitarist left the multimillion-selling act because of a serious problem with alcohol abuse. The band's current lineup includes lead singer Anders Friden, guitarist Bjorn Gelotte, bassist Peter Iwers, and drummer Daniel Svensson, with Niclas Engelin now replacing Stromblad. Noisecreep recently spoke with Friden about the effect of Stromblad's departure on the band.
Noisecreep: How Difficult was recording this album, given that Jesper was not in the band?
Anders Friden: We've been without him for almost two years prior to the actual album recording. It wasn't so much on the musical side; it was more on the friendship side. We've known each other for so long and we've seen him struggle with his addiction, and whatever problems come along with the addiction, for quite some time. But the recording was pretty much as always, or even better. Like, the whole vibe was very good within the band.
Can you hear the impact of losing one member and adding a new one?
It's just me and Bjorn who have been writing this album, and before it was me, Bjorn, and Jesper writing the album. It hasn't affected us on the musical side. It's more affected us as friends because we never parted ways because we don't like each other, we never parted ways because of musical differences; we parted ways because we couldn't work as a unit. I think this album, yeah, it might [have] turn[ed] out different if Jesper was involved, but I don't know how because we approached the album in the same way that we've always done [it]. Me and Bjorn have done nine of 10 In Flames albums; we were just not part of the first one. To us, it wasn't that much different.
In the studio, did recording go smoother since you didn't have to worry about an alcoholic friend?
Yeah, in a way. I mean, we all miss him as the person, Jesper. It looks more different and looks like a struggle from the outside, when people look into the band, but we've been living with this for such a long time and we've been struggling with this issue for more years than you can imagine, and we just tried to keep it hidden from the public. I don't want to take away anything from Jesper because it's been really significant for our sound, but he has not been the one holding everyone together. And the band is way bigger than us -- me, Bjorn, Peter, or Daniel. I think In Flames is way bigger than the individual and if we can't trust each other that we will appear on up-coming tours and so on, then that makes it harder for everyone else.
Many of the songs, especially the first few, seem to be about struggling with identity, legacy, and mortality. Is that right?
Overall, the concept of the album -- I mean, it's not a story like Queensryche's 'Operation Mindcrime' type of thing -- it's more I was thinking about the world where we are today. There's only a few places in the world that are untouched by man, or people do live there but they live with the earth together with nature and they probably think that's how it's going to be forever, like you always do. But you and me -- I'm not saying you -- we more take, take, take until there's nothing more to take and then we move on to the next people.
And what would happen if someone would give us a sign and say, 'You only have five years to live [or] you only have 10 years to live,' and then that's going to be the final thing, would that change the way we think? Would that change the way we treat each other? Would that change our plans or our regrets? So all of the songs are almost pretty much questions.
I ask myself, 'What I would do in these situations?' I start thinking about my life, my situations, where I am, where I've been, where I'm going. Is that a good place or a bad place, and all the songs are from that topic, so I raise more questions. That's my way to communicate with you or whoever is reading the lyrics, and maybe one day we can meet and talk about them. And then I haven't preached 'this is the way it is and this is the way it should be.' Who am I to tell you?
Would you change if you had five or 10 years to live?
I would say so. I'm far from perfect. There's maybe people I'd like to say some things to, but overall, I have achieved a lot of things. I'm very humble being able to do what I do. I'm very fortunate. I'm gone far beyond where I thought I would be. I met a lot of people which has been awesome. It think I've learned a lot along the way.
Is the song 'Fear Is The Weakness' about Jesper? The song includes lines like "At least you could have tried/It's way past time" and "It's sad to see you go/It's not meant to be easy/But you drag us down."
It could very much could be so. It doesn't have to be, but obviously being [his] friend has affected me a lot.
How is he? Is he sober?
Er, I don't think so, no, unfortunately. It's up and down. I think he can medicate himself, but that's not really how it works. I met him a few weeks ago and we talked a little bit.
Is the door open if he wants to come back?
Never say never, but we are very happy with the situation we are in. Now we can work as a band. But who knows? Obviously a lot of changes need to come from him. As I said, we're good friends. We're not enemies or anything. It's just a long relationship that's been burning out.
THE RESISTANCE, the new Sweden-based metal band featuring former members of IN FLAMES, THE HAUNTED and GRAVE, has been confirmed for the new Sonic Rock Circus festival, set to take place on September 30 at Klubben in Stockholm, Sweden.
THE RESISTANCE's lineup is as follows:
* Marco Aro (FACE DOWN, ex-THE HAUNTED) - Vocals
* Jesper Strömblad (ex-IN FLAMES, DIMENSION ZERO) - Guitar
* Glenn Ljungström (ex-IN FLAMES, DIMENSION ZERO) - Guitar
* Alex Losbäck Holstad (ex-DESPITE, DECAMERON, CARDINAL SIN) - Bass
* Chris Barkensjö (CARNAL FORGE, GODSIC, ex-GRAVE) - Drums
Strömblad quit IN FLAMES in February 2010 in order to continue receiving treatment for his alcohol addiction.
DIMENSION ZERO's third album, "He Who Shall Not Bleed", was released in 2008 via Vic Records. The CD contained "11 tracks of aggressive, fast and melodic Gothenburg metal," according to a press release.
FACE DOWN entered the Swedish hard rock album chart at position No. 19 with its last effort, "The Will to Power", which came out in November 2005.
Greek doom metallers SORROWS PATH are hard at work on material for their sophomore album, tentatively due in 2012. The CD will contain 10 songs and will be recorded later this year at Fragile studios in Greece. Songtitles set to appear on the effort include "The King With A Crown Of Thorns" and "Brother Of Life".
SORROWS PATH recently recruited Giannis Tziligkakis (OMINOUS SKY) as its new second guitarist.
The band released its debut album, "The Rough Path Of Nihilism", on October 29, 2010 via Rock It Up Records. The CD was recorded at Fragile Studios in Athens with producer Vangelis Yalamas, who also played the synthesizer on the effort. The artwork and photography for the album were handled by Seth Siro Anton (PARADISE LOST, KAMELOT, MOONSPELL, EXODUS).
SORROWS PATH is:
Stavros Giannakos: Bass
Angelos Ioannidis: Vocals
Fotis Mountouris: Drums
Kostas Salomidis: Guitar
Giannis Tziligkakis: Guitar
For more information, visit www.myspace.com/sorrowspathmusic.
Since releasing their fourth studio album, 'Chasing the Grail', last year, a mightily fine collection of accomplished groove-driven metal compositions with the surprise, though welcome, inclusion of an epic prog-metal finale, it seems Fozzy have finally unburdened themselves of general opinion that they are not a serious band. Quite the contrary, their one-time "mock band" status has been long abandoned and the widespread critical acclaim for 'Chasing the Grail' coupled with a rapidly increasing fanbase as evidenced by a series of sold-out shows last year in support of said release is testament to such a fact. Fozzy have never been more serious about their music which the metal scene, after many years, seems to be embracing en masse. Ahead of the band's return to the UK for a handful of shows in June/July which includes an appearance at Knebworth's prestigious Sonisphere festival, Metal Discovery spoke with multi-talented frontman Chris Jericho to
reflect back on a most successful 2010, where Fozzy are at in 2011 as well as his ambitions for the band, particularly now the former WWE world heavyweight champion has taken a break from wrestling...
METAL DISCOVERY: It’s been over a year now since the rather awesome ‘Chasing the Grail’ came out. How do you regard the album all these months on and do you still listen to it much yourself?
CHRIS JERICHO: It’s funny because I was just talking to Rich Ward about this the other day. I put it on having not listened to it for probably six months and it was like, man, that’s still a smokin’ record! We’ve been playing the songs so much live but when you hear it from beginning to end, note for note, it’s like, wow, it really does what we wanted it to do which was to create a quality, versatile album that kind of grows with each listen. There’s so much stuff that you don’t really notice the first couple of times you hear it. It’s cool because, especially now with the level of recognition the band has gained over the last year, a lot of people are still discovering this album. They’re like, “wow, we never heard this before and I can’t believe it took us this long to hear about Fozzy, and I can’t believe it took this long to give Fozzy a try.” Man, it just goes to show my big motto that the only people who don’t like Fozzy
are the people who never actually heard the band!
(Chris Jericho on Fozzy's ever-growing fanbase)
"...the only people who don’t like Fozzy are the people who never actually heard the band!"
PART 1 BELOW - CLICK HERE FOR PART 2
PART 1 ABOVE - CLICK HERE FOR PART 2
Chris Jericho onstage with Fozzy at the Rescue Rooms, Nottingham, UK, 14th May 2010
Photograph copyright © 2010 Mark Holmes - www.metal-discovery.com
Interview & Photography by Mark Holmes
CJ: [laughs] You know what I mean?
MD: Definitely! So you’ve obviously played a lot of the new material at shows over the past twelve months but have any tracks become favourites of yours more than others based on crowd reactions?
CJ: Well, it’s funny because we do half the album live; it’s the most we’ve ever done from any of our records live. We do six songs live. ‘Martyr…’ is a great tune, ‘…Madness…’ is a great tune. I think ‘God Pounds His Nails’ goes over really well because there’s a little bit of a sing-a-long with that. ‘Under Blackened Skies’ is a great way to open the show. ‘Grail’, we’ve started playing that; that’s a really cool song and could be my favourite song on the whole album. We never thought about playing it live until we went to Australia last year and it just really goes over well. We also do ‘Friday the 13th’ which is Thursday the 12th, it’s bad for my health and that’s today, dude. So that’s a cracking tune as well. So yeah, all the songs go over well live and I think we picked a really good mix off the record so people get a really good sense of what it is we do.
MD: Can you pronounce the Friday the 13th phobia track?
CJ: Of course, it’s “Paraskavedekatriaphobia”…[a fluent pronunciation]
CJ: I try and lead a “Paraskavedekatriaphobia” chant every night and it doesn’t usually go too well but it’s part of the fun!
MD: There’s no reference to it in the actual lyrics for the song – is it too many syllables to sing?!
CJ: Yeah, of course! [laughs] I actually wrote that song…I write all my songs based around song titles and I saw that in a car ad for a Ford or something like that and I thought that’s the best Steve Harris lyric that Steve Harris never wrote! It’s the perfect sort of Iron Maiden style where you have to look it up to learn something. That’s what I always loved about bands like Maiden back in the day where you would actually have to look it up to find out what it was. That’s why I loved the song title and the subject matter of it as well.
MD: Yeah, it’s quite esoteric in that sense, I guess. I interviewed Frank last May and he said he’d love to start playing ‘New Day’s Dawn’ at shows and he was saying maybe get a female vocalist to do the falsetto vocal parts live. Is that something you’ve considered at all?
CJ: Er, no, I haven’t, it’s the first I’ve heard of it! Maybe Frank can hire the female vocalist and bring her on the road with us!
CJ: Rich sang that part in the studio. He wanted to get a female vocalist and during his demo it sounded so cool the way he sang it so it was like, “oh, you’ve got to sing this”. But that’s the thing about this album, there’s a lot of straight-ahead four-on-the-floor…what is it Bruce Dickinson said?…“sticking to the pit of your stomach type metal.” If anyone else said that it would be weird but, with Bruce Dickinson saying that, it’s the greatest compliment ever! He said – “It’s a real meat and potatoes stick to your guts type metal album”! So there are plenty of songs like that on the album but there’s also quite a few songs like ‘Wormwood’ and ‘New Day’s Dawn’ that have a little bit more orchestration behind them. So they’re kind of getting into ‘Sgt. Pepper' territory where they’re kind of hard to reproduce live. Those are two songs that were just made for the album. I guess if the time comes if we’re
ever gonna do ‘Chasing the Grail’ in its entirety we’ll have to hire a female vocalist.
MD: I think Frank was suggesting maybe if you did a festival you could grab a female vocalist from another band that was playing there as well to come on stage with you, or something like that.
CJ: Sure, yeah, like I said, it’s a great tune and it’s one of those ones when I first heard I was like - “Really? I don’t know if this is really gonna work”, but it just fits the whole tone of ‘Chasing the Grail’ brilliantly and it’s a very different style song of what we usually play. So I was really excited to have that song on the record too.
MD: Talking of different styles, ‘Wormwood’ is a particularly awesome track on the album which I gather from talking to Rich last year that it was yours and Mike Martin’s baby. Have you ever considered doing any other prog-metal stuff, maybe as a side-project or something?
CJ: No, I mean, I was always a big fan of ‘Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ and Helloween’s ‘Keeper of the Seven Keys’, and Dream Theater and Rush and stuff like that so I always wanted to do a long song. Rich and I had discussed that early on in the process and Mike kind of took up the challenge for that and wrote a great tune. I’ve already written all the lyrics for the next record and I already have another epic one written for it.
CJ: Lyrically, it’s just as long as ‘Wormwood’. There are four sections to it and I think it’s three or four pages of work. This time, I think Rich is gonna do it so we’ll see what Rich comes up with. I think with a guy like Rich Ward writing you’ll probably get more of a ‘Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ type prog-rock song whereas ‘Wormwood’ has a much more Dream Theater type feel. What I mean by that is Maiden’s longer songs are based around a central riff and the dynamics of that riff whereas ‘Wormwood’ has seven or eight or ten different parts to it. So I’m really looking forward to seeing what Rich will do with this song because he’s got the lyrics to work with. I think the lyrics are probably better than ‘Wormwood’ because I kind of really knew what I wanted to do with it this time.
MD: I think it fits your voice really well too, that kind of style. You know, you’ve got a really good voice for epic, prog-metal.
CJ: It’s really weird because you can kind of feel that vibe and, like I said, it’s always been part of who I am as a music fan. I love the long, epic type tunes and you’re almost singing out different characters. If you listen to ‘Wormwood’, there’s different vibes to the song – there’s a creepy vibe and you can sing more creepy and if it’s a fast riff you can sing a bit more panicky. Whereas most four or five minute rock songs you don’t get a chance to settle in. ‘Wormwood’ gave me a chance to do that and I think with this next epic tune we’ll be able to do the same thing with the same type of vibes and a really frantic kind of feel to it.
MD: Cool, I’ll look forward to that. I have to say that the Fozzy show I covered in May last year in Nottingham was one of the best gigs I went to last year, it was absolutely awesome. What are your memories now from those four shows you did in May because it was a bit rushed, wasn’t it? You flew in, did the four shows in three days, then had to fly back out to be on TV in the States on the Monday?
CJ: Yeah, and I almost got stuck over there from the remnants of the volcano!
MD: Ah yeah, the Icelandic volcano thing.
CJ: Yeah, but this is the thing about the UK – it’s always been a second home for us. From the moment we played our first shows there in 2005, probably up to this year, people just really embraced us and they always have. So those shows were really good because we hadn’t played in the UK for…I think it was maybe three years or four years, so it was a real good return because it was like, “will people remember us and what are they gonna think?” I know those four shows, especially the Nottingham one, and I think the one in Glasgow, they got moved to bigger venues because the shows sold so well. So that was a nice kind of comeback, you know, like welcome back Fozzy. Like I said, we’ve always gone the extra mile and done more tours in the UK than anywhere else in the world because our fans have built us there. That’s one of the reasons why we’re even on Sonisphere this year. I mean, you don’t just get on that show because you want to, you
have to have a track record and you have to have a fanbase that demand it. And I think people know what we bring, like you said, we pride ourselves in really going the extra mile and having a very entertaining show and having a show that has a lot of crowd participation, a lot of crowd involvement. There are some great rock ‘n’ roll songs as well. Yeah, I remember that show vividly. It was a great show and it was a great time. We’re not coming back to Nottingham this tour but we’re going to a bunch of other places that are close enough I’m sure.
MD: It was very hot in that venue I remember.
CJ: Yeah, I always love that about the UK; I love the venues. That’s one thing about our band, we definitely have no egos as far as where we’ll play. We’ll play the biggest stages in the world like Sonisphere and we’ll play places like Margate! It was funny because we had a show in Paris and we had a day off because, you know, you’ve got to take the ferry over to Paris. I don’t like having days off when we’re on tour so, like – “Book us somewhere. We’re in this little town called Margate, is there nowhere to play?” I was like, “find us a place to play”! And it was this club called The Westcoast or something. Gosh, it was a small place; it probably held about two hundred and fifty people. It was jam packed, smokin’ hot, there were hot chicks all over the place and it was like the perfect date! You know, just really fun and almost like playing at a party! That’s what we do so we always take pride in the fact that we’ll play
anywhere and give people the same show as if we’re on the Sonisphere stage, no matter where we are.
MD: So Margate then, the perfect hot and sweaty metal show!
CJ: Yeah, we’re going back there again because we’re going to Paris again so, well, “book Margate again”!
MD: Marvellous! A strange little town is Margate too! Obviously you have the European tour coming up this summer and some UK dates including Margate, as you mentioned – will you be aiming to do a different setlist from when you last toured here in October?
CJ: Well, it’s weird because it will be a different setlist just by proxy and the fact that, okay, we’re doing some festivals, we’re doing some shows where we’re opening for Anthrax and Skindred, other shows where we’re second on the bill between somebody and Ill Niño, and then we’re doing a bunch of shows where we’re headlining. We’re gonna have all different types of setlists because I’m sure at Sonisphere we’ll get forty minutes, you know, playing with Anthrax we’ll get forty minutes, playing with Ill Niño we’ll probably get an hour and doing our own shows we’ll do an hour and a half or an hour and forty five. So we’re just gonna have to mix it up every night and kind of feel the vibe of what people want to hear. That’s one good thing about us is we’ve got a lot of different styles of songs – we’ve got heavy ones, we’ve got fast ones, we’ve got covers that we can throw in there. So we’ll definitely be able
to construct the setlist to wherever it is we are. New material…we won’t have any new material ready. We did work on a really cool medley of classic metal songs for the Golden Gods Awards we just played at in LA…a tribute to some of the greatest tunes of all time so that might be kind of fun to play maybe.
MD: That sounds good. Can we expect Andy Sneap at any of the UK dates again?
CJ: [laughs] It’s funny…I went to the Big Four in Indio, California, a couple of weeks ago and I got there a little bit late, and then I went and said “hi” to some of the people that I knew backstage, like some of the Anthrax guys and that sort of thing. I walked out of the little compound, sixty thousand people there, the first person that I see who I didn’t even know was there was Andy Sneap!
MD: Nooo! Wow!
CJ: “What are you doing?!” I don’t know if he was doing Exodus, or Testament, or something. And then I never saw him again. I saw him for four or five minutes and then he disappeared. I called him a couple of times but I don’t know what happened to him. I asked him if he wanted to come and play with us, of course…he wants to do Sonisphere. I’m like, “no, you can’t do that one!”
CJ: “You can’t play the big games without the practice!”
MD: That’s fair enough!
Phil Whitehouse of OneMetal.com conducted an interview with SOILENT GREEN drummer Tommy Buckley on May 15 in Birmingham, England. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
OneMetal.com: Are you finding that things are working out better with Metal Blade [than they did with you previous label, Relapse]?
Tommy: Well, you know, I don't think that they really know all of the information behind everything that's going on with us right now. They're a really good label, and they've given us support, but right now we're three years into it, and we should have another album out, and we have, like, one song written. We've been working on stuff, and Brian [Patton, guitar] has some stuff, but we've just gotta get together — 'cause Brian lives in Baltimore, Maryland, and we're back in New Orleans, Louisiana, so it's basically either he flies to New Orleans or we go to him, and just bust our asses. So, that's where we're at right now, getting ready to start writing a new record. But with the label, you know, I've had a lot of health issues, so that's kinda held the band up too. In 2009 I had a hernia surgery, and I busted my shoulder on THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER tour, and in December of '08 in Canada I slipped and fell in snow and fucked my shoulder up. So, you
know, I was basically dealing with a fucked-up shoulder, and some hernia problems, so I went and got an MRI on my shoulder after I had the hernia surgery in early January of '09. Then we did the "Squidbillies" theme song for Adult Swim and Cartoon Network. After that, I had to go back to CROWBAR for rehearsals, and it was totally full-pounding, y'know, back in the swing of pounding drums again. That's when I realized I had a busted-up shoulder. At that point, I thought I was going to have to have shoulder surgery. So I was going through orthopedic doctors at home, had some X-Rays and shit, and they told me that nothing was broken or torn, but I had some bone spurs that were giving me some problems. So, I've been trying to refrain from getting a shoulder surgery, and knock on wood, I'm feeling better at the moment. Right after that, we went and did one show in the summer of '09 at Hellfest, and that was the only show that we actually played until this
tour. We had a real, real long dead period. '09 was basically me just tryin' to get my health straight. After Hellfest, I ended up having another hernia, so I had to go back and have another hernia surgery again in September. And each time, it put you out of action for a month or two — you can't even sit up in a bed. You have to roll out of bed because you can't even use your abdomen muscles. If you had an itch, you could feel the itch, but when you scratch it, you couldn't feel anything. Totally drugged, just numbness. So, I went through all that shit, and I don't think Metal Blade even knows about all that. I don't know if Ben [Falgoust, vocals] told 'em. But I think it's something they should know about.
OneMetal.com: It's that kind of determination that the band's really become known for, continuing in the face of all the pitfalls and bad luck that you guys have dealt with.
Tommy: Well, I think this is a good starting point for SOILENT again. That's basically why I wanted to come back over here again. It just seemed like Relapse couldn't get us back over here again, or didn't want to get us back over here, and I don't want Metal Blade to feel the same way, because we're not givin' 'em an album, like, right now, when they want it. They need to understand that without the band members being in good health, there wouldn't be a band. You gotta get your shit together and your life together. So, that's why I'm out right now. I don't even care if I have to get another surgery — I'm not even sure what's wrong with me right now. If I have to have another surgery, I'll be busting my ass and doing whatever I can do to keep writing new SOILENT material, to make sure this new album happens by next year. We'll be in the studio by next year, definitely.
After a three-year hiatus, THE MISERABLES — the San Francisco Bay Area-based band formed by ex-SKINLAB guitarist Glen "Glenny" Telford and former 40 GRIT members Chris Anderson (guitar), Ryan Healy (bass) and Andy Green (drums), along with Canadian singer Denton Bramley (ex-TERROR SYNDROME, GOD AWAKENS PETRIFIED) — is back!
Commented Telford: "We are stoked to be jammin' again. [We] had our first rehearsal the other night and it crushed; [it] seemed like we didn't miss a day of practice since we stopped!
"We will be searching for a singer now! Any interested singers please contact Glenny at gle_nny777@....
"Bottom line, we decided we all wanted to be back in a band, get in a van, hate each other, come home broke and ultimately be Miserable!"
For more information, visit www.myspace.com/themiserables
Renowned drummer Craig Smilowski (ex-IMMOLATION, ex-GOREAPHOBIA) has teamed up with Cazz Grant (CRUCIFIER) Matt Dwyer (RELLIK) and Chris Milewski to form MASADA. The band has just released its first demo, "Suffer Mental Decay", which contains two songs — "Suffer Mental Decay" and "Toxic Unreality" — of "old-school death metal with a unique edge."
San Diego's PATHOLOGY will enter Lambesis Studios in the band's hometown this summer with producer Daniel Castleman (IMPENDING DOOM, AS I LAY DYING, WINDS OF PLAGUE) to begin recording its new album for a fall release.
Commented drummer Dave Astor: "The writing process for the new album is going very smooth. The new songs are some of the heaviest stuff we have ever written
"We are all thrilled to be working with producer Daniel Castleman at Lambesis Studios here in San Diego. I am a fan of all his recordings and feel his skills will bring our sound to where it needs to be."
PATHOLOGY's next U.S. tour — as the support act for GRAVE and BLOOD RED THRONE — will kick off on August 30.
2010 was a volatile year for PATHOLOGY. While it saw the band releasing its Victory Records debut, "Legacy Of The Ancients", and doing three tours (alongside NILE, IMMOLATION/VADER and DESTROYER 666), the group was plagued by a rotation of fill-in singers and ultimately a horrible van accident that derailed the band from continuing.
Since that tragic event November 10, the guys have been putting things back in order. In addition to a new van, trailer and gear, PATHOLOGY has also enlisted a new full-time vocalist to replace original voice Matti Way, who was unable to tour with the band. Jonathan Huber, formerly of I DECLARE WAR, has taken over duties as frontman for PATHOLOGY. In addition to his stellar vocal capabilities, Jonathan proved to have the right attitude and presence that won him the spot. In addition, the band has welcomed back guitarist Tim Tiszczenko, who stepped down midway through the touring cycle. Tim joins his replacement guitarist Kevin Schwartz for a dual-guitar assault. Both guitar players have also been writing new material in the downtime, bringing a whole new level of intensity to the band.
Lead guitarist and songwriter Jon Levasseur has rejoined Canadian extreme metallers CRYPTOPSY. Youri Raymond, who had been playing guitar, is now handling bass duties following Levassour's return and previous bassist Eric Langois' departure from the band.
Commented the band: "We have some important informative news we would like to announce. Jon Levasseur, former lead guitarist and major creative contributing force behind 'None So Vile', 'Whisper Supremacy', 'And Then You'll Beg...' has returned to the band. The combination of Jon and Chris Donaldson has revived the power and energy of the infamous CRYPTOPSY string section, without losing the backup vocal and creative talent of Youri Raymond who is now playing the six string bass for the rhythm section. Eric Langlois has, for now, decided to step back and take a break from the CRYPTOPSY family. The reborn and fully motivated chemistry of Matt, Chris, Youri, Jon and Flo is determined to make an impact in 2011 and beyond. New material is in the works (with the [current] lineup) and will be available to all with your support in late 2011. Meanwhile, three new songs have been completed and will soon be featured on a final Century Media release. This meaning,
the future is ours and yours and promises to be true CRYPTOPSY."
Despite the fact their frontman Twan van Geel recently joined the ranks of LEGION OF THE DAMNED as that band's new guitar player, Dutch black/death thrashers FLESHMADESIN have every intention of carrying on.
FLESHMADESIN recently completed work on its third album, "'Delirigion", which is described in a press release as the band's "most demonic and, above all, most honest and intriguing album to date. With the new [CD], FLESHMADESIN has taken [its] music out of the thrash and into the darkened wastelands of death and black metal. 'Delirigion' combines the sinners own somewhat unique approach of aggression and groove, which was already noticeable on their forerunners 'Dawn of the Stillborn'  and 'The Aftermath of Amen' , together with the sharpness and anarchistic transcendence of harsh blackened metal."
Commented Twan van Geel: "'Delirigion' is FLESHMADESIN's next step on our highway to hell, but we rather see it as the first step into the new flesh. This reptile changed skin, so the band's logo made way for a more suiting armor to maintain its venomous innards on the right place. We are ready to bring back the danger once again and set ablaze the hearts of true metal heads still breathing for that bloody taste of hell's metal!"
"Delirigion" was recorded and mixed at Aftermath studios by drummer Marco Stubbe. The CD was mastered at<br/><br/>(Message over 64 KB, truncated)