Here are some of the latest sales figures for various metal/hard rock releases in the US, as reported by Soundscan for the week ending November 25th, 2001 (number in parenthesis indicates the number of weeks the title has been on the sales chart):
KID ROCK – Cocky: 223,062 (1)
KID ROCK – Devil Without A Cause: 7,556,160 (171)
ROB ZOMBIE – The Sinister Urge: 227,554 (2)
ROB ZOMBIE – Hellbilly Deluxe: 2,536,385 (170)
SEPULTURA – Nation: 50,324 (-)
SEPULTURA – Against: 126,286 (-)
SOULFLY – Soulfly: 326,619 (-)
SOULFLY – Primitive: 214,054 (-)
BIOHAZARD – Uncivilization: 12,545 (11)
V.O.D. – From Bliss To Devastation: 17,571 (-)
PITCHSHIFTER – Deviant: 32,604 (-)
MEGADETH – The World Needs A Hero: 179,710 (-)
SEVENDUST – Animosity: 99,150 (2)
KITTIE – Oracle: 55,015 (2)
DOPE – Life: 15,808 (3)
METALLICA – Re-Load: 3,560,096 (210)
METALLICA – Metallica: 12,916,419 (487)
METALLICA – S&M: 2,451,999 (105)
COLD – 13 Ways To Bleed On Stage: 384,461 (42)
SLAYER – God Hates Us All: 133,110 (11)
KISS – Box Set: 19,456 (1)
PUDDLE OF MUDD – Come Clean: 655,127 (13)
OZZY OSBOURNE – Down To Earth: 372,282 (6)
BLACK LABEL SOCIETY have apparently changed the title of their forthcoming third album from Deathcore War Machine Eternal to 1919 Eternal. The album will be released In Japan on February 17th and everywhere else on February 19th.
BLIND GUARDIAN's just-issued new single, 'And Then There Was Silence', is currently holding onto positions #4 and #3 in the Spanish and Japanese charts, respectively. The band's official web site also reports that the single has rather incredibly entered the Canadian (metal?) charts at #7 (we're admittedly a little skeptical about this last bit of info, however). In other news, BLIND GUARDIAN's upcoming European tour will feature FREEDOM CALL in the “special guests” slot. The confirmed dates so far are as follows:
April 25 - CH-Pratteln, SWI @ Z7
April 26 – Saarburg, GER @ Stadthalle
April 27 - Hildesheim, GER @ Halle 39
April 29 - Langen, GER @ Stadthalle
April 30 - Düsseldorf, GER @ Phillipshalle
May 01 - Hamburg, GER @ Docks
May 03 - Lichtenfels, GER @ Stadthalle
May 04 - Berlin, GER @ Columbiahalle
May 05 - München, GER @ Babylon
May 07 - Stuttgart, GER @ Congresszentrum B
May 08 - Bremen, GER @ Aladin
Former TWISTED SISTER frontman Dee Snider and his band SMF have cancelled their show at Janus Landing in St. Petersburg, Florida, which was scheduled for tomorrow, December 1st. No reason was given for the cancellation. The other three upcoming shows (Ft. Lauderdale, West Springfield, and Poughkepsie) are evidently still on.
German thrashers DESTRUCTION will play two headlining “warm-up” shows for their upcoming Hell Comes To Your Town European tour (also featuring SODOM and KREATOR) at the end of December. The dates, which feature NECRONOMICON in the support slot, are as follows:
Dec. 22 – Istein, GER @ Sternen
Dec. 23 – Freiburg, GER @ Atlantik
A manufacturing error on ICED EARTH's just-issued five-CD boxed set, entitled Dark Genesis, has resulted in the labels on four of the discs being mixed up. According to an official statement from the group, the CDs themselves “play perfectly fine, as the mistake is just cosmetic. The only problem is that the label on each CD (except for Tribute to the Gods) does not correspond with the music on that CD. Century Media [Records] is determined to correct this problem, so if you have a mislabelled box set and would like correctly-labelled CDs, send the four mislabelled CDs (Iced Earth, Night of the Stormrider, Burnt Offerings, and Enter the Realm) to Century Media, and they will immediately send you replacements, along with a 'Century Media Goodie'.” Mail to:
Century Media Records
Stichwort: Iced Earth Box
Veteran German power metallers GRAVE DIGGER will enter the studio next weekend to record their contribution for the forthcoming LED ZEPPELIN tribute album, which is scheduled to be issued through Locomotive Music in the spring. GRAVE DIGGER will record their version of “No Quarter”, which is being described as “very evil and mystical. It's a 6:30 min opus, and when we finish the song it will sound a little bit like 'The House' on [the band's most recent studio album] The Grave Digger,” according to vocalist Chris Boltendahl. Although GRAVE DIGGER had decided not to participate on any tribute album again after the tributes to ACCEPT and DIO turned into “complete disaster (sh.tty production and arrangements)”, the recordings of the group's rendition of 'Running Free' for the IRON MAIDEN tribute album convinced the band that they were able to “create cover songs the way we want: with all trademarks of the GRAVE DIGGER sound.” Other acts that are tentatively scheduled to contribute recordings to the above-mentioned LED ZEPPELIN tribute album include BLAZE (featuring former IRON MAIDEN/WOLFSBANE vocalist Blaze Bayley), MOTORHEAD, the new band of ex-HELLOWEEN guitarist Roland Grapow and drummer Uli Kusch, GAMMA RAY, and JIMMY PAGE AND THE BLACK CROWES.
Las Vegas' HEMLOCK have had their track 'The Sky Is Falling' added to rotation on KZGL FM radio in Flagstaff, AZ. “The Sky Is Falling” comes off the group's Pigeon Holed CD, which was produced by SOULFLY guitarist Mike Doling (ex-SNOT) and which is scheduled to be released in the coming weeks through an as-yet-unspecified label.
KITTIE have lined up the dates for their forthcoming European headlining tour. The details are as follows:
Feb. 02 - QMU – Glasgow, UK
Feb. 03 - Wulfrun - Wolverhampton, UK
Feb. 05 - Fleece and Firkin - Bristol, UK
Feb. 06 - Wedgewood Rooms - Portsmouth, UK
Feb. 08 - Hop & Grape - Manchester, UK
Feb. 11 - Electric Ballroom - London, UK
Feb. 14 - La Laiterie - Strasbourg, FRA
Feb. 15 - Elysee Montmarte - Paris, FRA
Feb. 19 - Metroplois - Munich, GER
Feb. 20 - Zeche Carl - Essen, GER
Feb. 22 - SO36 - Berlin, GER
Feb. 24 - Batschkapp - Frankfurt, GER
Feb. 25 - Schlachthof - Hamburg, GER
Feb. 27 - Vega - Copenhagen, DEN
Feb. 28 - Klubben - Stockholm, SWE
Mar. 02 - Melkweg - Amsterdam, HOL
Sweden's VINTERSORG, featuring vocalist Vintersorg of the Norwegian band BORKNAGAR, will enter Ballerina Audio Studios on December 10th to begin work on their upcoming album, which is tentatively scheduled for release in early 2002. According to a statement posted at the group's official web site, “it'll be a quite complex situation working in several studios, but it seems that the compositions generated are something special in the metal arena. Even if there will be used more innovative elements than before, the fans should feel on safe ground. The main thing at this moment is to concentrate on the album, so sadly the [forthcoming] DVD is a bit postponed, but VINTERSORG [is scheduled to start] working on the audio mix [for the DVD] after completion of the [studio] album.”
The Japanese release date for DOKKEN's new studio album, entitled Ladaze, has been pushed back to January 17th. No release information is presently available for Europe and the USA.
A video clip of SAXON performing the track “Killing Ground” at Wacken 2001 Festival can be viewed in streaming media format via the following locations:
Finland's SHAMAN (not to be confused with the Andre Matos-fronted Brazilian crew by the same name) are due to release their sophomore album, entitled Shamàniac, through Natural Born Records on January 2nd. As previously reported, SHAMAN feature in their ranks Jonne Järvelä (vocals, yoik, acoustic guitars, electric guitars, shaman and djembe drums), who played acoustic guitar and shaman drum for FINNTROLL during the latter band's gigs in Finland and Germany in support of their Jaktens Tid CD.
According to a press release from the representatives of former CRIMSON GLORY vocalist Midnight, the 'official' Midnight EP, entitled M, is now available from the singer's web site at www.midnightsattic.com. All pre-ordered CDs (which were ordered through the web site) are autographed and will be receiving a 'bonus materials' CD. The press release goes on to slam former Midnight collaborator, guitarist Rand Burkey (ex-ATHEIST), for publishing information via various Internet sources that “he has 'The New Midnight CD' now available from him. His product is not the 'Official' Midnight EP' and should not be confused or promoted as such. He is in fact releasing the two tracks he worked on with our client Midnight. This is being done without consent nor even a contractual agreement between himself and Midnight. To the best of our knowledge, our client will not even be getting paid for his part in the two tracks. Isn't that a shame! We do wish Rand the best of luck with his work in the music industry, but do disagree with the selling and promoting of his self-proclaimed 'New Midnight CD'. Call the CD something else and pay royalties to our client for his work on two tracks then we may be satisfied. Until then... We strongly disagree! Sincerely, Brian 'ProgCop' (B&B Management)'
Acclaimed San Francisco Bay Area rockers M.I.R.V. (championed by ALICE IN CHAINS' Jerry Cantrell and members of CHEAP TRICK, among others) will perform at Bash On Ash in Tempe, Arizona tonight and at Winston's in Ocean Beach, South Dakota tomorrow. The band's long-awaited live album is reportedly “almost finished”, with a few more songs left to mix. An early January release is expected.
Swedish black metallers LORD BELIAL have been rejoined by guitarist Niclas (Pepa Vassago) Andersson. In March 2002, LORD BELIAL will embark on a four-date tour of Sweden, Norway and Denmark with DYING FETUS, AEON, INSISION and NOMINON in support of their Angelgrinder opus, which was recorded at KING DIAMOND guitarist Andy LaRocque's Los Angered Recordings and is due for release in March through No Fashion Records/House Of Kicks/MNW.
American death metallers INCANTATION have signed to Candlelight Records for the European territory. The group are still in the studio completing work on their much-anticipated fifth full-length album, the group's first for Necropolis Records in the US, which is tentatively due to be released in early 2002. In other news, INCANTATION have lined up several European dates during February. The confirmed shows so far are as follows:
Feb. 01 – London, UK @ TBA
Feb. 03 – Bradford, UK @ TBA
Feb. 08 – Nijmegen, NETH @ Stadijk
Feb. 09 – Hengelo, NETH @ TBA
Feb. 15 – Leipzig, GER @ TBA
Feb. 17 – Vienna, AUS @ TBA
Feb. 21 – Milan, ITA @ TBA
Finnish black metallers ALGHAZANTH have amicably parted ways with guitarist Veilroth and have revamped their line-up, with bassist Grimort (ex-FUNERIS NOCTURNUM) switching to guitar and a new bassist, Infection, having been added to the fold. The group's third full-length album, entitled Osiris-Typhon Unmasked, was issued at the end of October through Woodcut Records.
Italy's MESMERIZE will have their their third CD, entitled Off The Beaten Path, released through Dragonheart Records during January.
The Kerrang! magazine-sponsored K-Fest show in London on December 16th featuring HIVES, THE (INTERNATIONAL) NOISE CONSPIRACY, RANDY and 59 TIMES THE PAIN has been moved from Mean Fiddler to Astoria after Mean Fiddler sold out of all of its 1000 tickets.
According to a posting from HOUSE OF LORDS bassist Chuck Wright, he has spent much of the “summer and this fall…in the studio working with [former GUNS N' ROSES and current THE CULT drummer] Matt Sorum and Lanny Cordola on the music score for a new movie written and directed by the star of the film Clerks, Jeff Anderson. We were also in the overdub stage with Matt's debut solo effort Hollywood Zen. [Ex-GUNS N' ROSES guitarist] Slash came down and did one of the best guitar solos I've ever heard on a song called 'The Blame Game'. This record rocks hard my friends. I got together with [ROUGH CUTT/ex-QUIET RIOT vocalist] Paul Shortino again and co-wrote and recorded a new song for his CUTT release. I was lucky enough to have 5 songs which I co-wrote with Lanny and Pat Torpey appear on the new MR. BIG release Actual Size and we have a track on the bands first single. The CD is currently #1 on many charts in Japan. Lanny and I were hired to produce a LIMP BIZKIT project reinterpreting and reconstructing they're music using different vocalists and bands which we just completed. Graphically, I've recently finished CD packages for the notable rock band GIANT, a new English female singer Christianne, a blues guitarist named Jim King, a rap group called ELEVEN/30 and of course, the LIMP BIZKIT tribute. I'm currently working on a flamenco guitarist new age artist named Nocy and Robert Fleischmann's CD package. Throughout these last three months I've also been writing and recording new material for the anticipated HOUSE OF LORDS release The Power and the Myth...Life is good... Happy Holidays to all!!!”
According to a recent posting by former DEEP PURPLE/WHITESNAKE vocalist David Coverdale, the singer's collaboration with ex-DAVE LEE ROTH guitarist Steve Vai lasted only one album “because I wanted to finish WS at the end of 1990...I felt it had gone as far as it could with that particular musical approach...Then I worked with Jimmy Page for 3 years...Then EMI released WS Greatest Hits...It did very well, and I was 'pressured' into touring again as WS...Contractually, they could 'enforce' this...and they did!!!...I was making a solo album called Restless Heart, and they once again insisted it should be a WS record...That was when I made up my mind to break free of my contracts with EMI...It eventually took until this year...August, in fact, for me to achieve this...by fair means and foul...Now, I am 'contractually free' to work under my own name, as WS, or, indeed, as Micky and the Moonmen, if I so desire...Right now, my only plans are to record my new solo album, and God Willing, tour in the Summer, next year...and that means EVERYWHERE, if I can...and if I'm 'invited'...There are still some 'unresolved' contractual issues, which my fab lawyers and I are determined to resolve, and put behind me, so I can move forward...INTO THE LIGHT, BABY!!!...” The frontman also dismissed suggestions by some that he should reunite with former WHITESNAKE guitarist John Sykes, who helped Coverdale pen the biggest album of his career, 1987, saying simply that “Mr. Sykes had the 'musical' potential, but, our personalities simply didn't gel.” The singer went on to say that “I am somewhat uncomfortable to record with a 'fixed' line-up, at the moment...I don't want to 'compromise' my toons to accomodate particular players...and believe me...that does happen...I prefer to find musicians, well-known, or not...who will be respectful to what I'm doing, and allow me to inspire 'em to take the essence of the songs further...For instance, I could play most of the solos on the new stuff...pretty well...but, I know the songs would benefit with the talents of actual soloists...Some well-known, perhaps...and, once again, some not so well-known...I LOVE it when a player helps turn a song into something BETTER than I originally thought it could be...That is the cherry on the cake, for me...I can deal with most ego's...I'm David bleedin' Coverdale, for God's Sake!!!...They have to deal with mine!!!...I assure you, they don't have to be 'famous' to be full of themselves!!!...Yes...I'm very discerning when it comes to musicians...More so now, than ever...I am only interested in musicians who want to get the best out of a song, and not just use it as an opportunity to 'show off' their technical skill, at the songs expense...Those days be gone, Mate...I have a good ear, and I use my intuition about their character...(and lots of discreet enquiries!!!)...before I will commit to involving 'em.”
CINDERELLA are tentatively scheduled to return to the road next year.
A brand new SEVEN WITCHES tune (featuring ex-CRIMSON GLORY vocalist Wade Black and SAVATAGE guitarist Jack Frost), entitled 'Metal Tyrant', can be heard at this location.
Former SKID ROW vocalist Sebastian Bach is scheduled to return to the recording studio after the completion of his stint in Broadway's Rocky Horror Picture Show to lay down an as-yet-undisclosed ballad he co-wrote with noted songwriter Desmond Child (i.e. BON JOVI, RICKY MARTIN).
Germany's EVERON will enter the studio in late January to record two full-length albums, one representing the “heavier” side of the band while the other will reportedly feature a more “ballad”-oriented approach. Both albums, tentatively titled Bridge and Flesh, are scheduled to be released through Mascot Records in May 2002. According to frontman Oliver Philipps, “Flesh rather puts an emphasis on orchestration and contains more epic tracks. Two songs contain female guest vocals, two more songs will have additional grunt-vocals, done by Gunther Theys of ANCIENT RITES. The title track of the second album, 'Flesh', is a piece of 15 min length unlike 'Fantasma', it will not be edited as different tracks this time. Each of the two new band members contributes a song of their own to the new albums. The artwork of both CDs lies once again in the capable hands of Greg Bridges, who has designed all previous albums as well.” Among the songtitles that are set to appear on the two albums are the following:
01. Across The Land (opening track of Bridge)
02. While Juliet Gladly Smiles... (feat. Gunter Theys)
03. And Still It Bleeds (opening track on Flesh)
04. Half As Bad (with string quartet)
05. Missing From The Chain (closing track on Flesh)
06. Bridge (closing track on Bridge, feat. Gunter Theys)
07. The River's Flow (female guest vocals)
08. Travelling Shoes
10. Already Dead (female guest vocals, with string-quartet)
11. If You Were Still Mine
12. Pictures Of You
15. Not This Time
In other news, EVERON are scheduled to appear at next year's Interfest in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and the Progpower Festival in Baarlo, The Netherlands during October.
KISS' 2002 Wall Calendar, which can be viewed at this location, is now available for purchase at the price of $12.95.
L.A. shred kings RACER X, featuring guitarist Paul Gilbert (ex-MR. BIG), vocalist Jeff Martin (ex-BADLANDS, BLACK SYMPHONY), drummer Scott Travis (JUDAS PRIEST) and bassist John Alderete (ex-THE SCREAM), have added another show in Tokyo, on January 11th, to their upcoming Japanese itinerary.
Finnish neo-classical metallers THUNDERSTONE, whose sound is said to be influenced by fellow countrymen STRATOVARIUS and SONATA ARCTICA, have signed with Nuclear Blast Records. The band will enter the studio in January to record their debut album for the label, with the mixing sessions tentatively scheduled to take place at Finnvox Studios in February with producer Mikko Karmila. The as-yet-untitled effort will be released next September but the track 'Spread My Wings' from the CD will reportedly be included on the forthcoming Nuclear Blast compilation Metal Dreams III.
DIXIE DREGS, featuring DEEP PURPLE guitarist Steve Morse, will embark on a west coast tour in January. The first show will take place at Slim's in San Francisco, California on January 15th.
MANITOBA'S WILD KINGDOM will be among the many artists performing at A Celebration of Helen Wheels, a tribute concert to be held Tuesday, December 4th, at Don Hill's in New York City.
Austria's HOLLENTHON, featuring PUNGENT STENCH guitarist/vocalist Martin Schirenc, will embark on a European Tour with label mates SIEBENBÜRGEN in late January/early February. Viennese fans can enjoy these two acclaimed metal acts live on February 10th at the Arena.
OMNIUM GATHERUM is heading out to Sonic Pump Studio in Helsinki at the end of December to record a new promo CD, entitled A Man Has Naught. In other news, OMNIUM GATHERUM will perform at Factory in Helsinki on February 20th and at Nurmi-MetalFest later that month.
“Little Angel”, the new single from Finland's CHARON, was the highest new entry on The Official Finnish Singles Chart, going straight into the #6. position. The band will be shooting a video for the track on December 7th in a town called Levi in North Finland with director Tuukka Temonen, who had previously worked with CHILDREN OF BODOM, AMORPHIS, THE 69 EYES, and TO/DIE/FOR, among others. CHARON's as-yet-untitled third full-length album is due in January. Mixed by Mikko Karmila at Finnvox Studios, the CD will contain the following tracks:
01. Bitter Joy
02. Erase Me
04. Little Angel
06. At The End Of Our Day
07. Desire You
08. Come Tonight
09. All I Care Is Dying
10. Sister Misery
Sweden's RUNEMAGICK are said to be close to signing a deal with an as-yet-undisclosed label following their split with Century Media Records earlier this year. The group's already-recorded new album, entitled Revelation Of Darkness, was tracked and mixed at KING DIAMOND guitarist Andy LaRocque's Los Angered Recording and is due for release in early 2002.
Swedish rockers DAMNED NATION have recruited acclaimed vocalist Matti Alfonzetti (i.e. SKINTRADE, JAGGED EDGE, BAM BAM BOYS) to replace Thomas Thorsen, who left the group in order to spend more time with his family. Alfonzetti will handle all vocal duties on the band's forthcoming fourth album, which is tentatively scheduled to be recorded during February.
Century Media USA will be releasing the first two records from Finland's ...AND OCEANS on a specially-priced double-disc set. The 2CD set, to be released early 2002, will contain both The Dynamic Gallery Of Thoughts as well as The Symmetry Of I, The Circle Of O, plus bonus tracks from the out-of-print 2CD set of Symmetry, which contained additional remixes.
The US office of Century Media will be exclusively importing and distributing the forthcoming reissues from Wrong Again Records for the territory of North America. Among the titles to be reissued are: the disc containing the first two releases from IN FLAMES (Lunar Strain and the Subterranean MCD) on one disc, NAGLFAR's debut album Vittra plus bonus tracks SPIRITUAL BEGGARS' first MCD (now re-packaged and with four bonus studio tracks, making it a 55-minute full-length release) and EUCHARIST's infamous debut A Velvet Creation, plus bonus tracks. Look for these releases in stores by February, available directly from Century Media.