According to TMZ.com, STONE TEMPLE PILOTS members Robert DeLeo (bass), Dean DeLeo (guitar) and Eric Kretz (drums) have filed a lawsuit against their former lead singer Scott Weiland claiming that he sabotaged their 20th anniversary tour by being chronically late for performances and missing promotional gigs. They also allege Weiland refused to communicate with other bandmembers in attempt to "hijack" the tour.
STP officially fired Weiland in February after weeks of rumors about his status, issuing a terse statement that read, "STONE TEMPLE PILOTS have announced they have officially terminated Scott Weiland."
This was the second time that the band has parted ways with its often troubled frontman, following a split in 2002.
Weiland, who was about to launch a solo tour at the time of his dismissal, denied at first that he had been fired, saying that STONE TEMPLE PILOTS legally could not exist or use that name without all four members of the group in the lineup.
He reiterated that view during an interview with a Nevada radio station, saying, "I started the band . . . there's things in place, like certain clauses that are in place that keep that from happening."
Fans were shocked when STONE TEMPLE PILOTS made a surprise appearance at a radio festival in the Los Angeles area last Saturday (May 18), with LINKIN PARK's Chester Bennington making his debut as the new STP lead singer.
The group performed a new song called "Out Of Time" at the show, putting a studio version online earlier this week. The DeLeo brothers and Kretz now claim in the lawsuit Weiland got vindictive and tried to interfere with the release of the single.
Bennington later said that he was planning on doing more recording and touring with STP, while remaining in LINKIN PARK.
STONE TEMPLE PILOTS is asking for unspecified damages.
Drummer Darren Minter of San Francisco Bay Area metallers HEATHEN has released the following statement to BLABBERMOUTH.NET:
"It is with great regret to announce that, after 25 years of drumming for HEATHEN, I have left the band due to unforeseen circumstances and will not be joining them on the European tour that starts in several weeks (a replacement will be named in the next few days).
"I apologize to all of our fans, but plan to pursue other musical endeavors and will continue to move forward making music.
"The split between HEATHEN and I was amicable and there is no bad blood or hard feelings towards one another.
"Hope to see you all on the road soon and I wish nothing but the best for the future of HEATHEN."
HEATHEN last year inked a deal with Nuclear Blast Records.
The band's latest album, "The Evolution Of Chaos", was released in the U.S. on February 16, 2010. The CD was issued in Japan on December 23, 2009 via King Records and was made available on January 25 in Europe via Holland's Mascot Records.
Former and current members of JUDAS PRIEST, ALICE COOPER, OZZY OSBOURNE and SCORPIONS are currently taking part in a week-long tour of Russia where they are playing classic songs from their respective bands under the banner ROCKSTAR.
In a video interview, Owens said about the ROCKSTAR project: "We all have such diverse backgrounds in so many different bands that we just want to get there and play WHITESNAKE and ALICE COOPER and DIO and PRIEST and GUNS N' ROSES. So I think this project is just to go play for the fans with this special show with all these songs and all these bands."
ROCKSTAR's tour kicked off on May 19 in Krasnodar, with stops in Rostov, Voronej, Penza and Saratov, before the tour ends May 28 in Moscow.
Fan-filmed video footage of the May 23 concert in Voronej can be seen below.
Video impressions from the first-ever Full Metal Cruise, which took place May 5-12, travelling from Hamburg (Germany) via Southampton (London), Le Havre (Paris) and Amsterdam back to Hamburg, can be seen below.
20 bands — including SAXON, DORO and KREATOR — performed across the decks of luxury liner Mein Schiff 1 on what was being billed as Europe's biggest heavy metal cruise. Almost 2,000 fans — most of whom were first-time cruisers — made the seven-day round-trip where balcony cabins cost as much as $2,300 per person.
According to BusinessWeek.com, the music-themed voyage — which was organized by TUI Cruises, a venture between Europe's largest tour operator TUI and Miami-based Royal Caribbean Cruises — sold out, and the average passenger age on the trip was 39 — younger than the 45-65 skew of a typical European cruise. "After-hours heavy metal karaoke was especially popular," Godja Soennichsen, a TUI spokeswoman, said, "and our onboard tattoo artist was working around the clock." In addition, beer consumption on the cruise was about 16 liters a head — more than six times that of a typical voyage.
Fan-filmed video footage of ANTHRAX's May 15 concert at HSBC Brasil in São Paulo, Brazil can be seen below.
ANTHRAX's May 10 concert at Teatro Caupolican in Santiago, Chile was professionally filmed for a live DVD. The show consisted of a special extended set featuring tracks from the band's whole catalog.
SHADOWS FALL guitarist Jon Donais, who has been touring with ANTHRAX since Rob Caggiano's departure in January, handled the lead-guitar parts at the Santiago show.
ANTHRAX recently completed the "Metal Alliance Tour", which also featured EXODUS, HIGH ON FIRE, MUNICIPAL WASTE and HOLY GRAIL.
"Anthems", ANTHRAX's long-awaited, eight-track EP that pays tribute to the classic songs by some of the band's favorite acts from the 1970s, sold around 8,500 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 52 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD was released in North America on March 19 (MRI/Megaforce), and on March 22 in Europe (Nuclear Blast).
ANTHRAX's latest full-length album, "Worship Music", sold 28,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at No. 12. The band's previous studio CD, 2003's "We've Come For You All", opened with just under 10,000 units to debut at No. 122.
MY RUIN — the Los Angeles-based band featuring the husband-and-wife rock duo of vocalist Tairrie B. Murphy and multi-instrumentalist Mick Murphy — will release its eighth full-length album, "The Sacred Mood", on June 11 via TuneCore, Bandcamp, iTunes and Amazon.
A sneak preview of the songs "Monolith Of Wrath", "Honey Of The Human Soul", "Moriendo Renascor", "God Is A Girl With A Butcher Knife" and "Insomniac Moon" is available in the YouTube clip below.
Commented Tairrie: "As a follow-up to our 2011 album, 'A Southern Revelation', we returned to Soundtrack Black Studio in the hills of East Tennessee to once again work with friend and studio owner Joel Stooksbury, who mixed, engineered and co-produced the new album along with MY RUIN guitarist Mick Murphy.
"'The Sacred Mood' is a subtle reinvention for MY RUIN.
"In an industry that is ever-changing, we're not a band who pays attention to the current trends. We've found our sound and we simply do what we do while staying true to our roots. I think our fans appreciate our integrity and we appreciate our fans.
"We offered the last album as a free download where people could donate to the band if they wanted and it was a great success, but we are taking a different approach with our new album, which we are self-releasing once again. Unfortunately, we have learned over time that most record labels are not for us and we seem to do better on our own as a DIY independent band, which is what we always have been, today more than ever with our eighth album, 'The Sacred Mood', as a testament to our staying power.
"The atmosphere of the new album is heavily drenched in the heat of the South, where it was recorded and fueled by insomnia-filled nights in Los Angeles where it was written. The cover was designed with this in mind by a talented Manchester, U.K.-based artist and illustrator named Kayleigh Brookes, who also happens to be a longtime fan of the band. The art that goes with the album is very different than anything we've previously done before. We decided to use real elements of nature mixed with iconic illustrations to create something unique to MY RUIN that would go with the otherworldly language of the lyrics. We wanted an ethereal image for the cover and chose the moon for the background because we felt it evoked the mood of the album as a whole. The image was actually inspired by a photograph which was taken by Tor Burrows, who has worked with me creating music videos for MY RUIN's last two albums and is currently working on a teaser commercial for the album which we plan on debuting in April. I really enjoy working with Tor on our videos and being that I have always worked alone when designing the artwork for many of our previous recordings, I thought it would be an interesting change to collaborate with someone on this side of things.
"We are releasing 'The Sacred Mood' digitally and designing a unique hardcover print and e-book to accompany it. Included in the book will be photographic images and illustrations of the band, lyrics, musings, a few short stories and original art pieces. This is something I have wanted to do for a long time and our new album has given me the perfect opportunity to make it happen. We're looking forward to sharing it with the fans of our band who have continued to follow us over the years and those who are just discovering our music for the first time."
100.3 The X Rocks conducted an interview with Björn Gelotte of Swedish metallers IN FLAMES backstage at this year's Rock On The Range festival, which took place May 17-19 at Columbus Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. You can now watch the chat below. Also available is footage of IN FLAMES' entire Rock On The Range performance.
IN FLAMES' tenth album, "Sounds Of A Playground Fading" (Century Media), sold around 14,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 27 on The Billboard 200 chart.
IN FLAMES' previous CD, "A Sense of Purpose" (Koch) opened with 20,000 units to land at No. 28. This was slightly less than the opening tally of "Come Clarity" (Ferret), which shifted just under 24,000 copies in February 2006 to enter the chart at position No. 58.
"Sounds Of A Playground Fading" was the first IN FLAMES album to be recorded without founding guitarist Jesper Strömblad, who quit the band in February 2010 in order to continue receiving treatment for his alcohol addiction.
Metal Mark of SkullsNBones.com conducted an interview with former METALLICA, VOIVOD and FLOTSAM AND JETSAM bassist and current NEWSTED frontman Jason Newsted before NEWSTED's May 21 concert in New York City. You can now watch the chat below.
As previously reported, Jason was knocked off stage by an overzealous fan during NEWSTED's gig in New York City. The group was halfway through a cover of METALLICA's "Whiplash" at the Highline Ballroom when the fan jumped onstage, appeared to attempt a stage dive, and ran into Newsted from behind, sending them both five feet down into the audience. The crowd surrounded the fan as security personnel swarmed over him and escorted him from the venue.
A visibly disoriented Newsted returned to the stage and told the crowd, "You know, no matter how many shows I've done, that just happened for the first time . . . Anyone get a good look at that motherfucker? Don't kill him, just bruise him up a bit."
A fan at the show filmed the incident and posted it on YouTube. He later met Newsted and showed him the footage, with the bass player himself suggesting that the fan post the clip online.
NEWSTED concluded its first-ever U.S. tour on Thursday night (May 23) in Asbury Park, New Jersey, with the band headed overseas for European festival shows.
NEWSTED has just completed recording its first full-length album, to be released later this year. Jason told Billboard.com the 13-song album, which he hopes to finish mixing during August, will be very similar to the band's debut EP, "Metal", which sold around 6,200 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 62 on The Billboard 200 chart. "The EP was always intended to be the primer, a sampler of what was to come on the LP," he said. "It's all metal all the time. It's not all fast, but it is all heavy."
Jason Newsted - Bass, Lead Vocals Jesus Mendez Jr. (THE NAPOLEON BLOWNAPARTS) - Drums Jessie Farnsworth - Guitar, Backing Voice Mike Mushok (STAIND) – Guitar
According to The Pulse Of Radio, DISTURBED and DEVICE frontman David Draiman has reassured fans that the former band will eventually return from its current hiatus. But he also asked the group's followers to show their support for DEVICE as well as FIGHT OR FLIGHT and ADRENALINE MOB, two other projects featuring the other members of DISTURBED.
In a lengthy Facebook post published on Thursday (May 23), Draiman wrote in part, "While DISTURBED's hiatus is in effect (and none of us truly know how long that will last), myself, Dan, Mike and John will continue to update you on the goings-on/projects from the DISTURBED family . . . When we eventually reunite, and we will, it will be an event, and one that will have greater meaning for all of us."
Draiman echoed this when The Pulse Of Radio asked him about DISTURBED's eventual return. "DISTURBED will reunite when the time comes," he said. "When we feel it's right, when DEVICE has run its course, when everybody's in the right head space and we're feeling re-inspired and we're ready to go back at it and the itch is itching hard enough, it'll happen."
The singer added that there was no reason for fans to be mad about the band's outside projects, saying, "Bitterness at our individual projects is really quite misplaced. so please support DEVICE, FIGHT OR FLIGHT and ADRENALINE MOB as they are fruit born of this hiatus; were counting on all of you."
DEVICE released its self-titled debut album on April 9. It debuted at No. 11 on the Billboard album chart, selling 35,000 copies in its first week of release.
DEVICE will hit the road this summer on Gigantour 2013, along with HELLYEAH, NEWSTED and other acts. The trek kicks off on July 3 in Gilford, New Hampshire, wrapping on August 11 in Toronto, Canada.
DISTURBED has been on hiatus since late 2011. Guitarist Dan Donegan and drummer Mike Wengren's new band, FIGHT OR FLIGHT, will release its debut album in July, while bassist John Moyer continues with ADRENALINE MOB.
Keyboardist Emmi Silvennoinen of Finnish folk metallers ENSIFERUM will be forced to sit out the band's South American tour — which is scheduled to kick off on May 28 in Bogota, Colombia — due to personal reasons. The group states: "The shows will go ahead as planned and the band will perform with Emmi's parts as backing tracks, so you needn't worry about the shows missing the signature ENSIFERUM melodies!
"We'd like to assure you that everything is fine within the band — Emmi is healthy and this is just for this tour because of circumstances beyond her control. She will be performing at future ENSIFERUM shows.
"We hope to see as many of you as possible at the shows and look forward to playing in South America for the first time!"
ENSIFERUM recently forged a deal with Metal Blade Records. The band signed the agreement with Metal Blade CEO Brian Slagel during the Paganfest USA tour, and all parties are enthusiastic about new music and new possibilities.
Comments ENSIFERUM bassist/backing vocalist Sami Hinkka: "We are really looking forward to our co-operation with such a great and legendary label as Metal Blade. The next full-length album should be out in early 2015. We have already started working with the new songs and it's obvious that the next album will be another step ahead for ENSIFERUM. And now that we have united forces with mighty Metal Blade nothing can stop us! The next album is going to be something that will rock the very foundations of folk metal genre.
"We also would like to thank Spinefarm Records for all these 13 years, it's been as blast but now it is time for us to move on and head bravely towards new challenges.
"The future looks bright for Sword Bearers!"
ENSIFERUM will be touring throughout Europe and South America this summer as they continue their live campaign in support of their most recent album, "Unsung Heroes".
"Unsung Heroes" was released on August 27, 2012 via Spinefarm. The CD was produced by Hiili Hiilesmaa (HIM, SENTENCED) at Petrax studio (CHILDREN OF BODOM, NIGHTWISH) in Hollola, Finland and other locations in the Hämeenlinna area.
British rock veterans STATUS QUO have announced the addition of drummer Leo Cave to the group's ranks.
Says the band: "We're pleased to announce the new addition to QUO's engine room is Leon Cave. A hugely talented multi-instrumentalist, Leon has worked with Francis [Rossi] previously, has been in rehearsal with the band and will be playing his debut show on Saturday, May 25th at the Wolkenkratzer Festival in Frankfurt, Germany."
34-year-old Leon also plays guitar and bass. Apart from the Francis Rossi band, he has toured extensively worldwide and recorded with a wide range of artists and producers.
STATUS QUO will release a soundtrack to its first-ever feature film called "Bula Quo!", a 90-minute action movie featuring the bandmembers as themselves and also starring Craig Fairbrass ("Cliff Hanger", "Rise Of The Footsoldier", "Eastenders") and Laura Aikman ("Keith Lemon The Movie", "Freight", "Surviving Picasso") with Jon Lovitz ("Saturday Night Live", "Friends", "The Wedding Singer"). The film was directed by Stuart St. Paul, who has worked on projects ranging from DURAN DURAN's seminal "Wild Boys" video, to "Aliens", "Batman" and three Bond movies.
"Bula Quo!" — the new two-CD album — is due out on June 10 and features reworked or live versions of ten classic STATUS QUO hits, including a Fijian-style rendition of "Living On An Island".
The first single, "Bula Bula Quo", was premiered on BBC Radio 2 and can be heard here.
Welsh metallers BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE will release their brand new single, "P.O.W.", on June 17. A video for the track an be seen below. The song is the third single taken from their critically acclaimed fourth album, "Temper Temper", and follows on from the previous singles, "Temper Temper" and "Riot", both of which were A-listed by BBC Radio 1.
Having completed sold-out tours of the Australia, Europe and America, the band will return to the U.K. in June where they will be second headliners on the main stage at Download festival on Friday, June 14. The band will also make a special announcement that afternoon at Download.
"Temper, Temper" sold 44,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 13 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD arrived in stores on February 12 via RCA.
BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE's previous effort, 2010's "Fever", opened with 71,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at No. 3. It was also a Top 10 release in the U.K., Japan, Australia, Austria, Canada, Germany and Switzerland.
The Welsh quartet changed the way they approached making an album this time around, with guitarist/vocalist Matt Tuck and drummer Michael "Moose" Thomas traveling to Thailand to do the initial writing and recording for the album. Tuck told The Pulse Of Radio why they made the trip. "It was just nice being in a studio 24/7, really, you know, with no distractions from home and stuff," he said. "So that was kind of the main reason why we went there and it just worked out well, you know, because we didn't have any pressures from having to travel, having to cook your own food — just all the stuff that is an everyday process obviously takes a lot of time out of the day to be creative. So just being there, being able to write 24/7, was a huge advantage."
BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE recently headlined the fifth edition of the "HardDrive Live" tour, which kicked off on April 12 in Denver. Joining them were main support HALESTORM, plus special guests YOUNG GUNS and openers STARS IN STEREO. The trek was sponsored by "HardDrive".
Reunited METAL CHURCH — Ronny Munroe on vocals, Kurdt Vanderhoof and Rick Van Zandt on guitars, Steve Unger on bass, and Jeff Plate on drums — recently entered Vanderhoof's English Channel studio in Washingtion to begin work on its comeback album for a late 2013 release via Kurdt's label Body Of Work Recordings. Vanderhoof writes on Facebook: "The record is coming along great! Ronny has started crankin' out the vocals and as usual, sounds killer! We are looking at an early fall release."
Munroe said in a recent interview with Metal Assault that the new METAL CHURCH CD would contain material that is "very reminiscent of the old days with some stuff that's very 'now.'" He added: "There's a bit of… I'm not going to say 'prog' because it's not, but there's a couple of elements in there that are a little bit progressive. For the most part, out of this batch of songs, they really sound more reminiscent of the early days than anything we've done before with this lineup. This excites me very much, and I think the fans are really going to dig it."
Regarding the circumstances that led to METAL CHURCH's breakup in 2009, Ronny said: "Well, in a nutshell, without going into a huge and long story here, it was certain aspects of things that had continued to happen to the band throughout its career. Not having the proper management and the proper people in place that were handling us. You know, we ended up taking some shows we shouldn't have taken and that just led to where Kurdt was really getting fed up and then we all kind of got that way. Basically, we figured before we end up disbanding because of other reasons such as maybe starting to fight with one another or whatnot, we decided to go ahead and end it then. We all ended up friends and we wanted to keep it that way. So I won't go into specifics, but we all know what the music industry is like now compared to what it was like back then. We just didn't have the right people in our camp."
Asked what the band is going to do differently this time around to avoid falling into the same trap, Ronny said: "This time around we're going to release this next record on Kurdt's label. Basically, Kurdt and the band and whatnot are taking a lot more control of the situation. Yes, maybe the downloading thing is even worse than 2009, but also on the other hand, if you know what you're doing and you use the Internet correctly, you can actually have success. Kurdt's been doing that with his prog band PRESTO BALLET and whatnot. In this day and age, the time is right to go and try something on your own. If it doesn't work, you can always end up going out and searching for a label or something. We're going to take a shot at it and see what happens and I think we're probably going to have some decent success."
Eternal-Terror.com recently conducted an interview with singer Yngve "Bolt" Christiansen of Norwegian death metallers BLOOD RED THRONE. You can now watch the chat below.
BLOOD RED THRONE released its new, self-titled album on May 21 via Sevared Records. The CD was recorded by Audun Grønnestad at Mayhem Music Studios and was mixed and mastered by Martin Berger Enerstvedt at Skar Productions. The cover art was created by Rafael Tavares and can be seen below.
"Blood Red Throne" track listing:
01. Soulseller 02. In Hell I Roam 03. Hymn Of The Asylum 04. Primitive Killing Machine 05. Deatholation 06. Torturewhore 07. Exoneration Manifesto 08. Dødens Makt 09. March Of The Undying
The official video for the song "Primitive Killing Machine" can be seen below.
BLOOD RED THRONE in December 2011 parted ways with vocalist Osvald "Vald" Egeland and bassist Erlend Caspersen and replaced them with Yngve "Bolt" Christiansen (GODDAMN) and Ole "Bent" Madsen (HORIZON ABLAZE), respectively.
BLOOD RED THRONE's sixth album, "Brutalitarian Regime", was released in August 2011 via Sevared Records.
BLOOD RED THRONE is:
Daniel "Død" Olaisen - Guitar Yngve "Bolt" Christiansen - Vocals Ole "Bent" Madsen - Bass Ivan "Meathook" Gujic - Guitar Emil Wiksten - Drums
Guitarist Bernie Marsden rejoined his WHITESNAKE bandmates on stage last night (Thursday, May 23) at the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England to perform two songs: "Fool For Your Loving" and "Here We Go Again". Fan-filmed video footage of his appearance can be seen below.
Asked in a 2012 interview with Geeks Of Doom what he thought of his songs being re-recorded by later lineups of WHITESNAKE, Marsden said: "I thought 'Here I Go Again' was fabulous because for me it was such a long time after I had written the song that I could listen to WHITESNAKE in that period as if I was listening to JOURNEY or FOREIGNER: it was just another band who were really good. But they were an American band by then [who] just happened to have the same name and the same singer and guy I worked with. 'Fool For Your Lovin'', when they re-recorded that I felt it lacked some of the heart and soul of what the song was all about and I know that David [Coverdale, WHITESNAKE frontman] has more or less said the same thing in interviews over the years. I think Steve Vai is a wonderful guitar player and he did a very good Steve Vai job on that track, but I didn't think it had the heart of what the song was all about. So you win some, you lose some. But having said that it sold about three-and-a half, four, five million [copies], so I can't complain too much! [laughs] It continues to do well to this day."
Regarding whether there are any unresolved issues between him and Coverdale, Marsden said: "Certainly not between David and I. We're as close now as I think we ever were which I never thought, up until a couple of years ago, I would have said in an interview. He's completely upfront with me, straight with me and if he wants me to do something he calls himself, he doesn't have people call me and we chat on the phone. I was feeling lonesome in Euston station a couple of months ago and I looked at my phone and I thought… 'I'll call him up.' So I left him a message and I just sang, 'Sitting in the railway station, waiting for my destination,' because I didn't think he was in. He called me back within about ten minutes: 'What the hell are you doing in Euston station?' he says. 'It's one o'clock in the morning! I'll talk to you until your train goes.' I appreciate that because I think it's nice for men of a certain age who have done quite a bit in their lives together to be as close as they can as older men. That sounds a bit profound, doesn't it?! But I really do believe that. I'm very happy whenever I've been onstage with him again. That, to me, is a tremendous bonus and I love every minute of it and just to be able to phone each other up and just say, 'Hey, how you doing, mate?' that's as important to me. For me, it closes the circle. Or opens a friendship that I thought may have been gone."