Seattle metal legends SANCTUARY kicked off their North American tour with ICED EARTH last night (Thursday, February 22) at Old National Centre in Indianapolis, Indiana.
These shows are acting as a tribute to the musical legacy of SANCTUARY singer Warrel Dane, who passed away last December. Guest vocals for SANCTUARY on the trek are being provided by Joseph Michael (WITHERFALL). Also joining the band on the road is second guitarist Joey Concepcion (ARMAGEDDON, THE ABSENCE).
Prior to the start of the ICED EARTH tour, SANCTUARY guitarist Lenny Rutledge said that the band "decided to continue on" with the shows "to pay tribute to our brother Warrel Dane." He added that the set would "consist of many old and some newer songs performed with the utmost respect and quality to honor our friend" and invited fans to "join us in this farewell as we celebrate Warrel's musical legacy with SANCTUARY."
A year ago, SANCTUARY released the official prequel to 1988's classic debut "Refuge Denied", "Inception", which showcased several previously lost recordings from their 1986 studio session that have now been restored, remixed and remastered by Chris "Zeus" Harris (QUEENSRŸCHE).
Formed in 1985, the band was signed to Epic Records with the help of MEGADETH guitarist Dave Mustaine and released two records, "Refuge Denied" (1988) and "Into The Mirror Black" (1989), which saw them perform with the likes of MEGADETH, FATES WARNING, WARLOCK and DEATH ANGEL. The band disbanded in 1992 as members Dane and Jim Sheppard (bass) went on to form the highly successful metal act NEVERMORE with acclaimed guitarist Jeff Loomis. SANCTUARY reunited nearly 25 years later in 2010 and appeared at several festivals worldwide before returning to the studio to record their acclaimed full-length comeback album, "The Year The Sun Died", for Century Media Records in 2014.
Dane tragically passed away on December 13, 2017 due to a heart attack while recording his second solo album in São Paulo, Brazil.