THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN "One of Us is the Killer"
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CATHEDRAL "The Last Spire"
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Last Updated: June 17, 2013 10:35 PM
HIM: Performance Footage Of New Song From Helsinki
- Jan. 1, 2013
Finnish love metallers HIM performed a brand new song entitled "I Will Be The End Of You" during their headlining concert at the Helldone festival on December 29 at Tavastia in Helsinki, Finland. Fan-filmed video footage of the performance can be seen below.
HIM recently finished recording its ninth full-length album, "Tears On Tape", at Helsinki's Finnvox Studios with longtime producer Hiili Hiilesmaa (APOCALYPTICA, AMORPHIS, MOONSPELL) for an early 2013 release. The CD, which will be made available via an as-yet-undetermined record label, was mixed in London, England by Tim Palmer, who previously helmed 2005's "Dark Light" and 2007's "Venus Doom".
"Basically, we're making what I'd call 'modern retro,'" HIM singer Ville Valo told Revolver magazine about the musical direction of the new album, which he says will sound like "ROY ORBISON meeting METALLICA." "We wanted it to be nasty, fucked-up, and messy, and have that punk-rock attitude. But then on the other hand, it would also have that Roy Orbison naive, sentimental, dream-like quality."
According to Valo, HIM was originally scheduled to begin work on "Tears On Tape" at the end of last year, but a repetitive-strain injury suffered by drummer Mika Kristian Karppinen (a.k.a. Gas Lipstick) — which left the skinsman unable to lift even a cup of coffee, much less pound a drum kit — forced the bandmembers to re-evaluate their desire to carry on.
"I think because he had the ailment, we had the opportunity to reassess what we had," Valo explained. "It was a miniscule existential crisis. We had to figure out what we really want to do and if we really like each other enough to continue through the hardest times-or do we want to call it a day?"
Asked about the meaning of the new HIM album title, Valo said, "For me, what it means is how songs —I'm not talking about our songs, but songs in general — can be milestones. You hear a song and it brings you to where you heard that song for the first time, or when it meant something really big to you. 'Tears On Tape' means that I appreciate the people who have really poured their souls and hearts out on tape, and showed that to the rest of the world for the better or for the worse. I wouldn't be here without those tears of Elvis Presley on tape."
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SHADOW SOCIETY Releases First Single
- Jan. 1, 2013
"Shrouded In Darkness", the long-awaited first single from SHADOW SOCIETY, the band formed in 2011 by Asgrim (IMMANIFEST, YETI) and Rob Thoth (CHRONZON), can be streamed below. Mixed and mastered at the Audio Refinery by Eric Koondel (SOILWORK, CYNIC, MALEVOLENT CREATION), the song is a glimpse into the dark arts of SHADOW SOCIETY. Ambience, brutality, melody, and technicality all blend together seamlessly to weave unique and original sonic soundscapes.
In other news, SHADOW SOCIETY has initiated bassist Scott Patrick (ORDER OF ENNEAD, COUNCIL OF THE FALLEN) into the collective, further enhancing their already formidable musical prowess.
SHADOW SOCIETY is now aligned with James McComas and Phoenix Rising Management (a division of Puzzle Box Entertainment Group) for worldwide management and representation. McComas states: "Having watched the band for more than six months, I can confidently say that SHADOW SOCIETY is poised to wage a full-on assault on the extreme music scene in 2013. Managing and personally working alongside a group of guys like this is a great honor. I know two of the members very well, and have toured with both of them. The rest of the guys are straight-up gracious and talented individuals, and I look forward to forging the same relationship with them that I already share with the rest of the band."
SHADOW SOCIETY is:
* Rob Thoth (CHRONZON, IMMANIFEST) - Lead Vocals * Kevin Quirion (DEICIDE, ORDER OF ENNEAD, COUNCIL OF THE FALLEN) - Guitar/Vocals * Al Asgrim: (YETI, IMMANIFEST) Guitar/Clean Vocals * Adam Sagan (CIRCLE II CIRCLE, INTO ETERNITY) - Drums/Clean Vocals * Scott Patrick (ORDER OF ENNEAD, COUNCIL OF THE FALLEN) - Bass * Roberto "Kadath" Celentano (YETI) - Keyboards
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DIRGE ETERNAL Recruits Former DREAMTALE Singer
- Jan. 1, 2013
Finnish horror metallers DIRGE ETERNAL, who feature former TURISAS bassist Hannes Horma on guitar, have announced the addition of former DREAMTALE singer Nils Nordling to the group'sranks.
DIRGE ETERNAL parted ways with vocalist Jani Perta in November. The band explained in a statement: "Everyone agrees that taking this band to the next level is not possible with the current lineup. Jani made the decision himself, so there is no firing involved or any other hard feelings."
DIRGE ETERNAL last year completed work on the "Under The Spell" EP at Sound Supreme Studio in Hämeenlinna, Finland. In addition to playing lead guitar on the CD, Horma served as engineer and producer during the sessions.
"Under The Spell"'s release was celebrated with a performance on May 5, 2012 at Escape in Riihimäki, Finland.
DIRGE ETERNAL's second music video, "The Slaughterhouse", was premiered on May 4, 2012 at the Biorex movie theater in Hämeenlinnna.
Pictured below: DIRGE ETERNAL's 2012 lineup
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Singapore's ZUSHAKON To Release Full-Length Debut This Month
- Jan. 1, 2013
Singapore's ZUSHAKON will release its self-titled full-length debut digitally on January 13 via Sonic Blast Media.
Influenced by MAYHEM, BATHORY, CELTIC FROST and DARKTHRONE, ZUSHAKON was formed in 2006 by Kyng Hades Almighty (vocals and lyrics) and Armaros (guitar, bass and drums) with a desire to unleash their "sick and twisted" blend of black and death metal to the "safe and sterile" music scene of Singapore.
In 2007, ZUSHAKON released its debut EP, "Chaosphist", which received positive reviews in the Singapore underground scene despite a limited pressing of just 150 copies.
In 2009, ZUSHAKON released its second EP, "World Ablaze", to much critical acclaim on the Singapore and European underground scenes, especially in Norway and Russia, where copies of "World Ablaze" have been bootlegged and circulated to friends and fans alike.
In 2011, Armaros left ZUSHAKON for personal and musical reasons, eventually forcing ZUSHAKON to disband indefinitely. However, in 2012 ZUSHAKON was resurrected once again with the addition of Lord Kathir of pioneering Vedic metal band RUDRA coming on board and taking over the helms of music and songwriting for a new album, scheduled for release in late 2013/early 2014.
To announce a new chapter in the history of ZUSHAKON, Kyng Hades Almighty decided to remaster their previous two releases ("Chaospist" and "World Ablaze") and make them available as a single full-length album entitled "Zushakon".
"Having ZUSHAKON on board is a dream come true," says Imran Manaff from Sonic Blast Media. "We have always liked their music and their attitude; and welcome them in our roster. ZUSHAKON brings back the sound of all the great 'old-school' black/ death metal bands like MAYHEM and BATHORY. This album ('Zushakon') is a blueprint of where black/death metal has been and where it is heading to."
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Former ONE WITHOUT Members Launch CHARACTERS
- Jan. 1, 2013
Three former members of the Swedish modern metal band ONE WITHOUT have launched a brand project called CHARACTERS. The new group's debut single, "Save The Fallen", offers the first taste of what fans can expect from CHARACTERS' upcoming EP.
"Save The Fallen" will be made available on January 2 via the biggest digital music providers.
CHARACTERS was formed in late 2012 by Joonas Niskanen and Joni Kaartinen following the breakup of ONE WITHOUT after almost a decade of existence. The band started out in September as a studio project in Gothenburg, with Robin Wiberg (keyboards) and Olle Töpel (ONE WITHOUT) joining shortly thereafter. After weeks of auditioning at Audio G8 Studio, CHARACTERS found the voice that fit perfectly the sound that they were after, and Ludvig Haby was recruited as the band's frontman.
PESTILENCE: New Album Cover Art Unveiled
- Jan. 1, 2013
Resurrected late '80s/early '90s death metallers PESTILENCE will enter the studio in February to begin recording their new album, "Obsideo". The drum tracks on the CD will be laid down by Dave Haley of Australia's PSYCROPTIC. Songtitles set to appear on the effort include "Necromorph", "Saturation", "Soulrot", "Laniatus" and "Superconcious". According to guitarist/vocalist Patrick Mameli, the CD's overall lyrical theme will be "the journey of the human soul."
The "Obsideo" cover art has now been unveiled and can be seen below.
PESTILENCE 2013 is:
Patrick Mameli - Lead guitar/Vocals Patrick Uterwijk - Lead guitar Stefan Fimmers - Bass David Haley - Drums
PESTILENCE's latest album, "Doctrine", was released in North America in July 2011 via Mascot Records. The eleven-track CD was recorded and mixed at Woodshed Studio in southern Germany with engineer Victor Bullok (a.k.a. V. Santura; TRIPTYKON, DARK FORTRESS). The artwork was designed by Marko Saarelainen.
Drummer Mark "Gus" Scott of reunited good-time rock and rollers TRIXTER was interviewed on a recent edition of the "Maximum Threshold" radio show. You can now listen to the chat in the YouTube clip below.
TRIXTER's new album, "New Audio Machine", was released on April 24, 2012 in North America via Frontiers Records. Featuring the band's original lineup, the CD was produced by Steve Brown with extra production and engineering by Chuck Alkazian (ELTON JOHN, CHRISTINA AGUILERA, TESLA) and includes songwriting contributions by SKID ROW's Snake Sabo and Rachel Bolan and STYX's Glen Burtnik.
The "Tattoos & Misery" video can be seen below. The track was written by Steve Brown, P.J. Farley, Mark "Gus" Scott and Xandy Barry (THE ROLLING STONES, PUDDLE OF MUDD, BACKSTREET BOYS, MILEY CYRUS), mixed by Corey Pensa and is featured on
Formed in Paramus, New Jersey in 1984, TRIXTER's self-titled debut album attained gold status (reaching #28 on The Billboard 200 in 1990), and spawned three minor hit singles: "Surrender" (#72), "One In A Million" (#75), and "Give It To Me Good" (#65). Despite the fact that none of the singles made the Top 40 or garnered much radio airplay, the videos for all three tunes were in heavy rotation on MTV (especially "Give It To Me Good", which was #1 on the channel for several weeks). A follow-up effort, "Hear", came out in 1992, but failed to reach the same commercial heights. The band recorded an album of cover songs, "Undercovers", in 1994, which garnered little commercial success, and TRIXTER broke up shortly after its release.
TRIXTER announced the reunion of its original lineup in 2007 and has since played a number of shows, including the Rocklahoma festival in 2008.
TRIXTER's current lineup features Pete Loran on lead vocals and guitar, Steve Brown on lead guitar, P.J. Farley on bass and Mark "Gus" Scott on drums.
"Tattoos & Misery" video:
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CTULU To Release 'Seelenspiegelsplitter' In April
- Jan. 1, 2013
Northern Germany's Lovecraftian act CTULU will release its third full-length studio album, "Seelenspiegelsplitter", on April 12-13. The album will be launched at two gigs in Hamburg and Erfurt, respectively, and will be made available via Nocturnal Empire. Joining the band on stage during the release gigs will be Bristol's FEVER SEA, Kiel's AEBA (which features CTULU's studio drummer) and Bremen's NEBUKADNEZAR.
"Seelenspiegelsplitter" is intended to take you on a journey deep into the halls of the Esoteric Order of Dagon where your skin shall become grey as the sea, your eye color will vanish into grey nothingness and your soul shall be bound to the depths of the ocean.
CTULU has already confirmed one summer festival appearance: Czech Republic's MetalGate Czech Death Fest, which will take place on June 14-15.
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THE WILDHEARTS Announce 'Earth Vs The Wildhearts' 20th-Anniversary Shows
- Jan. 1, 2013
After a three-year hiatus, THE WILDHEARTS — Ginger (vocals, guitar), CJ (guitar, vocals), Ritch Battersby (drums) and "Random" Jon Poole (bass) — made their explosive live return in front of a sellout crowd at The Forum in London, England on December 17, 2012.
In April 2013, THE WILDHEARTS will once again take to the stage when they perform their classic debut album, "Earth Vs The Wildhearts", at four special shows. The album was voted the No. 1 album of the year by Kerrang! magazine in 1993. The show will be broken into two halves — the first will see "Earth Vs" performed in full, and the second half will allow the audience each night to help choose the songs they want to hear.
The dates are as follows:
April 04 - Glasgow, ABC April 05 - Manchester, Academy April 06 - Nottingham, Rockcity April 07 - Wolverhampton, Wulfrun Hall
Support will come from EUREKA MACHINES.
Tickets go on sale on January 7 at 9 a.m. from all major ticket outlets.
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GUNS N' ROSES Guitarist BUMBLEFOOT's Advice To Young Musicians: 'Be On Time'
- Jan. 1, 2013
Ryze-Up magazine recently conducted an interview with GUNS N' ROSES guitarist Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Ryze-Up: Are you currently teaching music?
Thal: It's much harder to teach with all the touring in the last few years. Last year I gave some Skype lessons, which I hope to be able to do again. Between shows while touring, I had arranged a few clinics and master classes at schools and venues. I've done intemational clinic tours over the past 10 years, and lots of articles and videos for web sites and major guitar magazines in the U.S., Europe, and Japan. I've been a guest instructor/performer at schools and music camps, and was once a music coach on MTV's "Made". Teaching is important to me; I think the essence of it is sharing. You make a song, you share it. I was writing songs. I starting writing with other people too. I was making demos, I started producing people too. You acquire knowledge over the years from your own experiences and what others have passed on to you, and you do the same. It's being part of nature.
Ryze-Up: Being a guitarist for GUNS N' ROSES, solo artist, producer, teacher and songwriter, how do you balance your music with other obligations — mate, children, job?
Thal: It's not easy. It takes serious juggling skills and a willingness to live on the edge of the implosion point. The thing is, your life is yours — you make the rules, you choose your compromises and sacrifices, and evaluate and adjust as needed. You can't be rigid; you have to be a very fiexible structure. Make it work. [I've been] married for 16 years, going on 23 years together [with my wife] and it's better now than it's ever been. We adjusted our lives so that we can see the world together, and make it good for us. When I'm not touring, that's when I teach, record, put time into everything else.
Ryze-Up: What advice would you give to newbies in the music scene?
Thal: 1. Be on time. By "on time" I mean "be early." Make sure you're there for when you need to be — wait in your car, communicate, let them know 10 minutes early that you'll be there in 5 minutes, and walk in 5 minutes later. 2. Be prepared. By "prepared" I mean "overly prepared." Know more than you need to. If you're gonna lay guitar parts, know the drum grooves and where all the accents and up-beats and fills and breaks are, know the bass lines... When the bassist doesn't show and they freak out and you say, "I know the bass part. I can lay it down," you'll be the MVP 3. Be cool. And by that I mean, be a calm, relaxed, easy-going, soothing presence in the room. When everyone is contagiously breaking into panic and stress mode, you'll be their voice of reason without even trying. Players can be replaced — people are chosen by who others want to spend their time with.
DEATHDESTRUCTION Completes Recording New Album
- Jan. 1, 2013
Swedish metallers DEATHDESTRUCTION have finished recording their sophomore album, tentatively titled "Death Is The Winner", at Bohus Sound studios in Kungälv, Sweden with producer Roberto Laghi (IN FLAMES, HARDCORE SUPERSTAR, LOK, SONIC SYNDICATE). Laghi is currently mixing the CD, whose sound is described by the new DEATHDESTRUCTION singer Tony Jelencovich as "much wider than [that of] the debut album; it's harder, more mature and has more melancholy."
The following songs were laid down during the "Death Is The Winner" sessions:
* Set The Sail * Divine Justice * False Flag * I Am The Plague * Moscow Morning * Dead Pilot * Taste The Mud * Insane Stays Sane * Towards The Light * I Promised You Nothing * Dead Tomorrow * Money, Blood, Crucifixus * A Shelter From Harm * Give It A Try
Vocalist Jimmie Strimell quit DEATHDESTRUCTION in June 2012 in order to focus on his other band, DEAD BY APRIL.
Regarding Tony's addditon to DEATHDESTRUCTION, the other members of the group said, "Tony is a friend to the band, and he has truly made a mark in the Gothenburg scene with bands like B-THONG, TRANSPORT LEAGUE and MASSIVE AUDIO NERVE. He's also worked with bands like MNEMIC and the Russian band ICON IN ME.
"Tony has everything we look for in a lead singer and a frontman, so the choice was just so easy when we had to find ourselves a new singer. We're totally stoked about what he will contribute to DEATHDESTRUCTION! This is going to be so fucking good, people!!"
DEATHDESTRUCTION in 2011 inked a deal with the Swedish branch of Sony Music Entertainment. The band's three-song EP, "Fuck Yeah", was released in April 2011 and was followed by the group's self-titled debut album in August 2011. The CD was recorded at IN FLAMES' IF Studios with Laghi.
* Tony Jelencovich (B-THONG, TRANSPORT LEAGUE, MASSIVE AUDIO NERVE) - Vocals * Henrik Danhage (ex-EVERGREY) - Guitar * Fredrik "Loppan" Larsson (HAMMERFALL) - Bass * Jonas Ekdahl (ex-EVERGREY) - Drums
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THE ABSENCE Parts With Ways With Guitarist PETER JOSEPH
- Jan. 1, 2013
Tampa, Florida-based metallers THE ABSENCE have released the following statement:
"As most of our friends and fans know, the last year has brought THE ABSENCE some ups and downs, and most of us have emerged a much stronger and dedicated group at the end of it all. We owe as much to our fans who have always offered us amazing amounts of support and we are genuinely excited about what is coming next.
"We have done a lot of work to get ourselves to the point where we are able to begin delivering new music, merchandise, and even a killer new live show, but the work that is left to do must be done quickly and will require unquestionable reliability, dedication, input, and, above all else, a mutual sense that we are in this together.
"At this time, we are sad to say that THE ABSENCE will be parting ways with guitarist Peter Joseph. We will not be announcing a replacement at this time. We will have more information as things progress and we are able to sort everything out over the coming weeks.
"Keep an eye out for brand new music from us very soon and for all of the fans that have been after us for merch please come by our Facebook page below and visit our brand new digital stores where you can pick up some new gear from THE ABSENCE. This year we plan to hit harder than ever, so keep your eyes peeled!"
THE ABSENCE's third album, "Enemy Unbound", sold around 800 copies in the United States in its first week of release. The CD landed at position No. 55 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.
"Enemy Unbound" was released on September 14, 2010 via Metal Blade Records. The CD was once again recorded at the Erik Rutan-owned Mana Recording Studios in St. Petersburg, Florida in November 2009, with Brian Elliott engineering and Peter Joseph and Patrick Pintavalle producing. Going along with the saying "If it's not broke, don't fix it," the band tapped Jonas Kjellgren (SCAR SYMMETRY, CARNAL FORGE) of Black Lounge Studios in Sweden to handle both mixing and mastering on "Enemy Unbound". Guest musicians on the CD include Tom Englund of EVERGREY and Andy Wood.
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PICTURE ME BROKEN Singer: Having Sex Appeal 'Does Not Cheapen You As An Artist'
- Jan. 1, 2013
Rock Revolt Magazine recently conducted an interview with vocalist Brooklyn Layla Allman of Redwood City, California's PICTURE ME BROKEN. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Rock Revolt Magazine: Kudos to you for being nominated for one of the "Hottest Chicks in Metal." When I first saw that, I asked myself what does that had to do with you musically or creatively? Though it is nice to be recognized as being "hot," that really isn't what it is all about. Do you feel like there is still a bit of a double standard when it comes to female lead singers in rock/metal bands? What is your take on that?
Brooklyn: I think it would be a double standard to not capitalize on sex appeal, even with female artists. I think male artists have been capitalizing on that for years. I think rock isn't rock and roll without sex appeal. It does not cheapen you as an artist.
Rock Revolt Magazine: I think it is terrific that you are not using your father's [Gregg Allman] celebrity as a way to break into the music business. You are blazing your own trail and doing it on your own. I know the music business is a lot tougher than it used to be. Do you ever regret your decision to not use a few of the breaks you could have had been provided to avoid a lot of struggles and are you happy to have chosen the path you did?
Brooklyn: I never wanted to capitalize on my dad for that. I think sometimes having a famous father is more of a hindrance and makes some people think that you have everything handed to you and have more opportunities. I don't think the music business is easy for anyone. I feel that when people already have a preconceived notion that you have it easier than everyone else then you actually have it a little bit harder in reality.
Rock Revolt Magazine: PICTURE ME BROKEN are releasing a new EP entitled "Mannequins" December 18th. How did that come about and what was the thought process like in the making of it?
Brooklyn: We intended it to be an album originally. We had quite a rough year behind the scenes that delayed the album. We really wanted to get some music out there so we took four songs that conceptually went together and put them on this "Mannequins" release. It is going to go hand in hand with the new album. We hadn't released new music for so long we wanted to let fans hear the new band and the new sound. "Mannequins" is kind of a metaphor for the false music industry. It can be a real struggle being put in a box and being told what to do. The album cover is a mannequin with plastic surgery lines. It is a representation of the music business trying to alter us.
Rock Revolt Magazine: Speaking of EPs, do you think EPs are the evolution in the process and that they will eventually replace full album releases?
Brooklyn: Yes. I think with the Internet that we are in a instant gratification era with music. Releasing small snippets here and there continues to feed your audience which is essential. It's not like the old days where you would hype an album one, two or even three years. People are so oversaturated and overfed that you have to continue to post small snippets to keep things new and fresh. That is precisely the reason we decided to do "Mannequins".
THE MAN-EATING TREE Parts Ways With Singer
- Jan. 1, 2013
THE MAN-EATING TREE — the atmospheric metal band featuring former SENTENCED drummer Vesa Ranta alongside current/former members of POISONBLACK, REFLEXION and EMBRAZE — has issued the following update:
"Unfortunately, we have to inform that Tuomas [Tuominen] does not continue any longer in our band as a vocalist. Various musical and also non-musical aspects led us to this conclusion.
"There is no bigger drama or so in our side and we don't want to discuss further about the reasons behind the decision, so please don't send us any questions concerning the issue.
"Quitting the band was not an option in any case and we will return with a new singer when the time is right. Now it is time to gather some energy and even if the new material has been already written and practiced, the new album is not coming out in the near future.
"We would like to thank Tuomas from unforgettable times and great work without forgetting the kilometers of joy and tears we shared together. We wish you all the best in your life!"
THE MAN-EATING TREE's sophomore album, "Harvest", was released in November 2011 via Century Media Records. The CD was once again helmed by producer Hiili Hiilesmaa (HIM, SENTENCED, AMORPHIS) and marked the recording debut of guitarist Antti Karhu.
THE MAN-EATING TREE's debut album, "Vine", came out in Finland on September 22, 2010 via Cobra Records and in other territories through Century Media Records.
According to the group's official bio, THE MAN-EATING TREE was formed when "Vesa Ranta, having taken a break from music after SENTENCED, began to overcome his post-SENTENCED battle fatigue and lack of musical motivation. The idea of a new band — or bands — was eventually brainstormed over a period of time between Vesa and his friends, including gentlemen Miika Tenkula, Aaron Rantonen, Janne Markus and Mikko Uusimaa. Plans were made reality in 2009; the outfit was completed by the addition of Tuomas Tuominen as a vocalist and Heidi Määttä as a keyboard player. First demo recordings were made in the spring and summer of 2009.
AEON Drummer Taking A Break; Replacement Announced
- Jan. 1, 2013
Swedish death metal overlords AEON have issued the following update:
"Arttu [Malkki, drums] has decided to take a break from AEON. He and his girlfriend are expecting twins in March and he wants to focus on his family at this point. We have no idea on how long this break will be, but there is no need to worry. We have an awesome drummer on our hands that will be replacing Arttu to 100%. This means that we will be touring as planned and take on more tours along the way. So please let's welcome the mighty Emil Wiksten [BLOOD RED THRONE] as the current drummer of AEON. His first stage appearance with AEON will be on January 16 in London at Garage."
Drum-cam video footage of a recent AEON rehearsal, featuring Emil, can be seen below.
AEON released its fourth studio offering, "Aeons Black", on November 20 via Metal Blade Records. The mammoth 15-track effort was recorded at Empire Studio in Östersund, Sweden, engineered, mixed and mastered by Ronnie Björnström (Garageland Studios) and featuring cover art by Kristian "Necrolord" Wåhlin (BATHORY, AT THE GATES, DISSECTION, EMPEROR).
Commented AEON founding guitarist Zeb Nilsson: "This is definitely our most varied album to date; it has heavier songs, yet it also has lots of fast blastbeats and double bass drumming. It's groovier this time, which I think we lacked on our last album, 'Path Of Fire', which was fast-paced almost all the way through. That, and the amazing mix by Ronnie Björnström, makes me feel pretty confident that this album will appeal to more people than our previous albums. And no, we have not gone softer in any aspect; it's just easier to catch with all this grooviness. It's metal right up your ass!"
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MEGADETH's MUSTAINE Is 'So Impressed' With Drummer SHAWN DROVER's Performance On New Album
- Jan. 1, 2013
MEGADETH recently resumed work on its fourteenth studio album with producer Johnny K (full name: John Karkazis), who has previously worked with DISTURBED, SEVENDUST, MACHINE HEAD and STAIND. The CD is currently being recorded at MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine's Vic's Garage studio in San Marcos, California for an early 2013 release via an as-yet-undisclosed label following the band's recent split with Roadrunner Records.
In a tweet last night (Monday, December 31), Mustaine wrote: "Started song 5 tonight. I have NEVER heard Shawn [Drover, drums] play better. So impressed with him!!"
Mustaine previously told NME about the direction of MEGADETH's new material, "Some of it's a little darker, some of it's a little faster. Being in this position right now, not knowing where we're gonna go or what we're gonna do, it's kind of like the world's ours to do what we want. Are we gonna go back to the speed and thrash metal roots that made us who we are? Are we gonna experiment and rely on the melody that we've discovered in MEGADETH songs?"
Mustaine also spoke about how he likes to keep MEGADETH's music more melodic than that of most thrash bands. "We've tried to do that in MEGADETH, have a little melody so that it's not just the same old grinding music like everybody else has," he said. "We're just happy to get going and get to the studio."
Johnny K produced MEGADETH's last album, 2011's "TH1RT3EN", which was also recorded at Vic's Garage.
"TH1RT3EN" sold 42,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 11 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD marked the recorded return of bassist David Ellefson who was part of the band's classic lineup from 1983 to 2002. In a move that delighted the band's legion of diehards, Ellefson returned to performing live with MEGADETH in early 2010 and has remained a fixture on the stage ever since. This was the first time Ellefson has played on a MEGADETH record since 2002's "Rude Awakening".
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FEN: New Song Available For Streaming
- Jan. 1, 2013
"Consequence", a new song from progressive black metallers FEN, can be streamed using the SoundCloud player below. The track comes off the band's third album, "Dustwalker", which is scheduled for release on January 21 via Code666.
A three-piece whose lineup comprises The Watcher (guitars and vocals), Grungyn (bass and vocals) and Derwydd (drums), FEN's music fits into the black metal genre, but the exact categorization is hard to define, having been variously described as "progressive," "atmospheric," "post-rock" and "shoegaze." Drawing their name and inspiration from the desolate, windswept, other-worldly Fen region of the U.K. from whence founder members The Watcher and Grungyn hail, there is no doubt that the band's music fits into all the afore-mentioned categories, and more besides, to form a unique sound that is hauntingly and unmistakeably FEN. As The Watcher recently commented about the new album: "If 'Epoch' embodies a lonely walk into the deepening twilight of the fens in autumn, then 'Dustwalker' represents the cold, sharp greys of a bleak winter's dawn. An expression of isolation, abandonment and a gradual detachment from the material realm, this album is a starker, more direct representation of the FEN sound."
FEN have previously released two albums on Code666 — their debut full length album, "The Malediction Fields", in 2009 and the follow-up, "Epoch", in 2011, and the band recently announced that they had re-signed with the label for the release of a further three albums following the release of "Dustwalker".
"Dustwalker" will be available in both CD format, and as a limited edition Clambox which will feature a bonus track and include a pendant with the band's distinctive logo. Artwork for the album is by Grungyn.
"Dustwalker" track listing:
01. Consequence 02. Hands of Dust 03. Spectre 04. Reflections 05. Wolf Sun 06. The Black Sound 07. Walking the Crowpath 08. Epilogue (special edition bonus track)
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SOULHEALER Completes Recording New Album
- Jan. 1, 2013
Finnish metallers SOULHEALER have issued the following update:
"One year has passed again, and this was a really great one for SOULHEALER. One highlight was for sure our first show in Germany at the warmup show of the Headbangers Open Air, where we had a blast. And we hope and promise to be back in Deutschland as soon as possible. It was also great to share the stage with our heroes from ZERO NINE at Lankafest. And last but not least, we signed a worldwide deal with Pure Legend Records, a sublabel of the German record label Pure Steel Records, last summer, where we will release our coming album.
"And here we can tell you, that we have finished our studio work there last weekend. All songs are recorded, and now Janne Tolsa will take care of mixing and mastering everything at Note On studio. We are more than happy with our recording sessions and how everything turned out. And we think that we have produced a killer album, with some of the strongest SOULHEALER songs ever. We know almost all bands say this about their newest album, but this is the feeling we have at the moment, and we want to share it with you. Well, you will be able to make your own opinion pretty soon.
"We are looking forward for another great SOULHEALER year 2013, and we hope you are doing too."
SOULHEALER's follow-up to "The Kings Of Bullet Alley" is expected later in the year.
Jori Kärki - Vocals Teemu Kuosmanen - Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals Sami Mikkonen - Lead Guitar Pasi Laakkonen - Bass, Backing Vocals Timo Immonen - Drums
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GWAR/MINISTRY Bassist CASEY ORR Pays Tribute To MIKE SCACCIA
- Jan. 1, 2013
Bassist Casey Orr (MINISTRY, RIGOR MORTIS, GWAR) has released the following statement to BLABBERMOUTH.NET regarding the passing of MINISTRY and RIGOR MORTIS guitarist Mike Scaccia:
"How do I say goodbye to Mike Scaccia? How do I say goodbye to my best friend, my bandmate, my songwriting partner, my mentor, and yes, sometimes my tormentor? How do I say goodbye to such a unique and amazing talent, taken away from us far too soon? How do I say goodbye to someone I loved and admired, who enlightened me and inspired me, and made me believe that anything was possible? How do I say goodbye to my brother? How do I say goodbye to someone like Mike Scaccia?
"I can't. I won't. I don't have to.
"Mike Scaccia will live forever.
"Mike Scaccia lives on through his wonderful children and his beautiful wife, Jenny. He lives on through his family who were always his biggest cheerleaders. He lives on through his bandmates and all the musicians that had the honor of working with him over the years. Those of us who got to experience the full range of his musical capabilities. We, fortunate few, who knew, who REALLY knew, just how truly gifted he was. He lives on through his friends and his fans, and he will live on through the next generation of guitar players who will no doubt discover and be inspired by him and continue to push the boundaries of the instrument that he loved so much. He will live on through each and every one of us that he touched, because he was much more than just a brilliant guitar player. More than the just the coolest motherfucker I ever knew. He was a genuinely good guy. He had a way of making anyone feel like an old friend. He was accessible and would talk to anyone who wanted to talk. Especially if the subject was guitars. We hear story after story from people who met him for the first time after a guitar clinic, saying the same thing: 'Mike talked to me for 45 minutes after his clinic, talked to me like he knew me, suggested records to listen to or guitar players to study, gave me a fresh pack of strings and told me to go home and practice my ass off.' He was just a cool dude! And he didn't have a big ego. He wasn't a competitive guitar player. He wasn't out to be the best. Never claimed to be. He just loved the guitar and the guitar loved him right back. He wasn't flashy. He didn't showboat. But he didn't have to. His abilities were the flash and his hands were the show. You could always tell who the guitar players were in the audience, because they were all standing in front of Mike with their jaws on the floor and their eyes glued to his hands. It truly was just that amazing to behold!
"Of course, Mike wasn't perfect. None of us are. He traveled some dark roads in the past and he went through some dark times. But he never gave up on himself and he came back into the light and continued his journey, wiser and more humble for his experience. He fought his demons and he won. And for the last decade or so, he steadily hiked back up the mountain, concentrating on his family, and really enjoying his work and all of the people he worked with.
"And, most definitely, Mike Scaccia will live on through his music. He left behind some classic records as well as a whole lot of unreleased stuff. Not filler to be included to stretch out some best-of package, but albums worth of incredible music, that I, as a fan, sincerely look forward to being released someday, so the world can finally see the depth of his talent and enjoy the beautiful music he created.
"I am honored to be able to say that I have been Mike Scaccia's bass player for 30 years. Privileged to get to watch him play the things very few people ever got to see. The little riffs and things he would play at practice or just warming up. STONES, Johnny Cash, DEVO, cartoon songs, 'Jessie's Girl', just whatever. He had a rare gift, in that any tune he could conjure in his head, he could instantly translate to his hands and guitar. No searching for key or the notes. It was effortless. Instinctive. Freakish. It was awesome!
"And I am honored to be able to say that I have been Mike Scaccia's friend for 30 years. Privileged to share all the things that life throws at you. The good, the bad, the ugly, and the beautiful. We laughed a lot.
"We had our own language that only a band of brothers could understand. A weird, movie reference twin-speak that would drive our wives or girlfriends crazy, because they had no idea what we were saying or why we were laughing like idiots.
"It's really hard to say goodbye to Mike Scaccia. It hurts deeply. It's such an enormous loss to all of us and to the world. Such a tragic and shocking and unexpected passing of a man who was already a living legend. And we're all so very very sad. We will continue to shed tears for our loss for some time to come, and I for one will not apologize for a single one.
"We lost one of the greats. An unpretentious rock star. An incredible and one-of-a-kind talent. One of, if not the, greatest rock and roll guitar player of our time. And I say that without reservation or hesitation.
"On December 22, 2012, Mike Scaccia died. But he died doing what he loved. He died with his boots on and with his current favorite Les Paul in his hands. He died onstage, playing with his brothers, the guys he started his career with, playing to his hometown crowd, surrounded by the people who loved him most and who he loved. He died with happiness in his life. He died playing the guitar. How rock and roll is that?
"So, yeah, I can't say goodbye to Mike Scaccia. I'll just say 'so long,' you beautiful motherfucker. We'll meet again one day on the other side and you can show me that new riff you're working on.
"I love you, Mike."
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ADAGIO: Demo Versions Of Two New Songs Posted Online
- Jan. 1, 2013
Demo versions of two new songs from French neo-classical metallers ADAGIO — "Torn" and "Carry The Cross" — can be streamed below. The tracks — which feature the vocals of American singer Kelly Sundown Carpenter, who has previously worked with BEYOND TWILIGHT, OUTWORLD and DARKOLOGY — will appear on ADAGIO's next album, to be released later in the year.
ADAGIO in 2010 recruited Swedish vocalist Mats Levén (KRUX, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, THERION, TREAT) to sing for the band during the KAMELOT tour following the departure of Finnish frontman Christian Palin.
"Archangels In Black", the latest album from ADAGIO, was released in February 2009 via Listenable Records. The cover artwork was created by Guilherme Sevens and the CD was mastered at the Cutting Room in Sweden with Björn Engelmann (RAMMSTEIN, MESHUGGAH).
According to a press release, "without being a concept album, 'Archangels In Black' evokes the band's convictions about a certain Nightside philosophy and a very personal approach of life and death." Forté says, "Darkness is a concept with many branches, often misunderstood from outside, but elemental for some kind."
"Archangels In Black" was the first — and last — CD to feature Palin.
Palin was previously a member of the Swedish/Finnish bands ESSENCE OF SORROW and RANDOM EYES.
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JOHN 5: 3D Version Of 'Noche Acasador' Video To Debut At NAMM
- Jan. 1, 2013
The 3D version of "Noche Acasador", the new video from former MARILYN MANSON and current ROB ZOMBIE guitarist John 5 (real name: John William Lowery), will be premiered at the Coffin Case booth at the 2013 NAMM (National Association Of Music Merchants) show, a massive music-products convention which will take place January 24-27 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California. The clip was directed by Jonny Coffin (owner of the iconic Coffin Case brand), features camera work by Jason Dunlop and is presented by Coffin Case and Panasonic. The video also features John 5's wife Rita.
Says John 5: "This is a very special video for a very special piece of music and I hope you all like it. Thanks to Jonny and his team for their involvement in this, and helping to bring this track to life."
The 2D version of the "Noche Acasador" video can be seen below. The track comes off John 5's new full-length solo CD/DVD, "God Told Me To", which was released on May 8, 2012 via Rocket Science Ventures.
"God Told Me To" was recorded and produced by John 5, Chris Baseford (ROB ZOMBIE, TOMMY LEE) and Bob Marlette (SEBASTIAN BACH, BLACK SABBATH) in 2011. The cover art for the album is illustrated by none other than Rob Zombie, who is also tapping John 5 to score the entirety of his upcoming film, "The Lords Of Salem".
The CD portion of "God Told Me To" features ten painstakingly handcrafted pieces transcending multiple styles — an equal combination of acoustic and electronically influenced tracks — each designed to gradually reveal John 5's innovative interpretation of his instrument. The orchestration of "God Told Me To" showcases John 5's ability to master the subtlety of dynamics, thus emphasizing the overall production value of this body of work.
The DVD portion of "God Told Me To" is hosted by retro-style horror-host Mike Odd and takes a look inside the world of John 5 during his terrifying trip into the realm of "God Told Me To". The DVD features footage of John 5 in the studio while working on the new album, exclusive videos taken on tour, a peek inside the photo shoot for his 2011 remix album "Remixploitation", and more.
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LAS CRUCES Preparing To Enter Studio
- Jan. 1, 2013
Texas doom-metal veterans LAS CRUCES are preparing to enter the studio to record their fourth full-length album. The as-yet-untitled follow-up to 2010's "Dusk" (which was released worldwide via Brainticket Records) will be made available later this year. The band will also re-release its entire catalog, including a vinyl edition of 1998's "Ringmaster", initially issued via Brainticket Records.
LAS CRUCES, which is now managed by Leigh Olson Management And Media Relations (headed up by the wife and personal manager of Jeff "Oly" Olson, original drummer of doom-metal legends TROUBLE), is seeking a suitable record-company home as well as scheduling a summer 2013 U.S. tour. Tour dates will be announced soon.
Guitarist George Trevino founded LAS CRUCES back in 1994 in San Antonio, Texas and has since made his mark across The Lone Star State and the American doom-metal scene. It's no wonder why Daniel Bukszpan, author of "The Encyclopedia Of Heavy Metal", acknowledges LAS CRUCES as "one of the genre's leading proponents."
LAS CRUCES' current lineup is as follows:
George Trevino - Guitar Mando Tovar - Guitar Jimmy Bell - Bass Paul DeLeon - Drums/Vocals
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ETERNAL TEARS OF SORROW: New Album Details Revealed; 'Swan Saivo' Video Released
- Jan. 1, 2013
"Swan Saivo", the new video from the northern Finnish metal band ETERNAL TEARS OF SORROW, can be seen below. The clip was created and produced by Oulu-based company Mutant Koala Pictures.
"Swan Saivo" comes off ETERNAL TEARS OF SORROW's new album, "Saivon Lapsi", which will be released on February 22 via Massacre Records. The CD was recorded by Ahti Kortelainen and Janne Tolsa, mixed by Mikko Karmila and mastered by Mika Jussila. The cover artwork was created by Travis Smith.
"Saivon Lapsi" track listing:
01. Saivo 02. Dark Alliance 03. Legion Of Beast 04. Kuura 05. Dance Of December 06. The Day 07. Sound Of Silence 08. Beneath The Frozen Leaves 09. Swan Saivo 10. Blood Stained Sea 11. Angelheart, Ravenheart (Act III: Saivon Lapsi)
ETERNAL TEARS OF SORROW is:
Altti Veteläinen - Vocals, Bass Jarmo Kylmänen - Vocals Jarmo Puolakanaho - Guitar Mika Lammassaari – Lead Guitar Janne Tolsa - Keyboards Juho Raappana - Drums
ETERNAL TEARS OF SORROW's sixth album, "Children Of The Dark Waters", entered the official chart in the group's home country at position No. 19. The CD was released in Finland on May 27, 2009 via Suomen Musiikki. As was the case with the band's previous five LPs, the effort was recorded at Tico-Tico Studio in Kemi, Finland. It was released in the rest of Europe via Massacre Records and in Asia through Marquee/Avalon.
Photo credit: O.W. Kinnunen / Studio P.S.V.
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FEAR FACTORY: 'Big' Summer U.S. Tour Announcement Coming Soon
- Jan. 1, 2013
According to a posting on FEAR FACTORY's Facebook page, fans can expect "a big tour announcement for the U.S. this summer." No further details are currently available.
FEAR FACTORY's video for the title track of their new album, "The Industrialist", was directed and edited by James Zahn. The clip utilizes live footage of the band from last June's Graspop Metal Meeting in Dessel, Belgium against a visual backdrop that pulls topical subjects from the story written by vocalist Burton C. Bell that served as inspiration for the group's latest CD.
A part of "The Industrialist" video was revealed last year leading up to the release of the album. Now with the full video, the visual door to the concepts presented on the album are available for music fans to experience. Bell said, "We allowed James to take his time to create the video so that he could match his expertise with the conceptual imagery that was written in 'The Industrialist'. Being that he has been a longtime fan of FEAR FACTORY, he understood the nature of the FF machine; the concepts, imagery, and history. I believe he achieved a new era for FEAR FACTORY video concepts."
As a longtime fan of FEAR FACTORY, Zahn knew his work on "The Industrialist" would be enhanced by his extensive knowledge of the band.
"Growing up listening to FEAR FACTORY and being captivated with the heavy industrial scene of the 1990s, the one thing that always stuck with me was the accompanying visual aspect," he says. "Those videos that featured stock footage intercut with live performance clips were such a staple of the time and helped in editing 'The Industrialist'. Broken technology working alongside machinery in the midst of social change served as inspiration."
"The Industrialist" sold 9,300 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 38 on The Billboard 200 chart. The band's previous CD, "Mechanize", opened with 10,000 units back in February 2010 to land at No. 72.