Australia's ALCHEMIST have signed a three-album recording deal with Relapse Records for the whole world except Australia, where they will remain with Chatterbox Records. As part of the deal, Relapse will issue the band's Organasm CD worldwide in October. The band is currently writing new material for a new studio album, which is due in 2002.
Australian black metallers ASTRIAAL and ANWARIAD will be contributing to the forthcoming BURZUM tribute album, entitled When Night Falls, which is due to be issued through Death Cult Productions/Dying Sun Records. ASTRIAAL will cover 'Key to the Gate' and ANWARIAD will record 'Jesus' Tod'. The latter band is currently working on a full-length album for release through Indomitus Records.
NIGHTWISH's mini-CD Over The Hills And Far Away has once again landed in the number one spot in the Official Finnish Singles chart. Moreover, the group's 1998 Oceanborn album has re-entered the Official Finnish Album chart.
DEEP PURPLE are reportedly planning on booking shows in Britain before the end of the year, possibly October or early November. More information as it becomes available. In related news, former DEEP PURPLE guitarist Ritchie Blackmore has allegedly signed on to star as a Satanist in a new film called The Devil & All His Works, starring Blackmore's “companion” Candice Night and Jack Seal. The film starts shooting in May in the South of England and the Isle Of Man, with a £15 million budget. As for the film's plot, this is all that is known so far: The Satanist uses the celestial powers of an incoming earth bound comet to raise the Devil himself. This will be the first film Blackmore has made since he appeared in the movie Live It Up back in 1964.
The forthcoming remake of the 1975 movie Rollerball, featuring a cameo appearance by SLIPKNOT performing the track “I Am Hated”, will receive a theatrical release in the US on February 8th, 2002.
New Orleans sludge-meisters EYEHATEGOD are reportedly planning on doing 'something totally new and different” for the group's next studio album, while still retaining “the same EHG feel.' However, don't expect to hear any new music from the group until 2002.
FOO FIGHTERS will be performing in Edinburgh, Scotland on August 30th as part of the T on the Fringe at the Edinburgh Corn Exchange.
Holland's CENTURIAN have finished completed work on their new album, entitled Liber ZarZax, at Frank's Kitchen Studios. The group's first CD with new vocalist/bassist Jerry Brouwer (ex-ZI XUL) and current ZI XUL guitarist Oskar van Paradijs, Liber ZarZax will contain the following track listing:
01. Liber ZarZax
02. The Reading (ZarZax Unto Zax)
03. Heading for Holocaust
04. Coliseum of Blood
05. Hell At Last
06. Ritually Slaughtered for Satan
07. Feeding Flesh to the Vortex
08. Conjuration for Choronzon
09. Speech of the Serpent
10. Committed to Hell
11. Fornicating the Nazarene
12. Dead Black Nucleus
Liber ZarZax is tentatively scheduled to be released in September through Listenable Records.
Former MR. BIG/RACER X guitarist Paul Gilbert has recorded a “hard rockin' blues album” entitled Raw Blues Power, which will receive a European release through Mascot Records in January 2002.
EVERON will enter the studio from September until December to record two new albums, currently entitled Bridge and River, one featuring the heavier side of the band and the other containing material that verges on the 'ballad' territory. Both CDs are due in early 2002.
THE WELLWATER CONSPIRACY, featuring PEARL JAM drummer Matt Cameron and ex-MONSTER MAGNET guitarist John McBain, will embark on their first tour later this month. So far, only west coast dates have been announced, with the group scheduled to begin the trek in Los Angeles on August 23rd and finish things off in Seattle on August 31st.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
ENCHANT COMES EAST
San Francisco Bay Area prog-rockers ENCHANT have signed on to perform their first-ever east coast show at NEARfest 2002. Coming off the release of Juggling 9 or Dropping 10, the gem of an already strong catalog of music, ENCHANT promises to deliver a welcome punch to the lineup. Their aggressive, yet powerfully melodic style, influenced by such legends as MARILLION, RUSH, and KANSAS, is celebrated by legions of fans across the United States, as well as Europe, where the band has toured with DREAM THEATER and SPOCK'S BEARD. The band's first release, Blueprint of the World in 1995, showed a strong MARILLION influence and featured guest guitarist Steve Rothery on selected songs. Subsequent releases, Wounded, Time Lost and Break (all on Inside Out Music), showed the band emerge as world-class songwriters and musicians. Each release produced more dramatic compositions utilizing an ever-growing palette of influences and creativity. In 2000, ENCHANT released Juggling 9 or Dropping 10, their most cohesive and developed album to date, making it one of the year's finest heavy progressive rock offerings. The band is currently writing music for a brand new CD, tentatively scheduled for release in the fall of 2001. NEARfest is very pleased to host the east coast debut of this excellent heavy melodic quintet at the at the Trenton War Memorial next June.
According to various online sources, the forthcoming MSG album—the group's first with new vocalist Chris Logan (ex-OUTLAW CIRCUS)—will be entitled Beware Of Scorpions (unfortunately, we're not kidding), and it is tentatively scheduled for release through SPV Records on October 29th.
The sophomore album from BLAZE, the new band of former IRON MAIDEN/WOLFSBANE vocalist Blaze Bayley, provisionally titled 10th Dimension, has reportedly had its release date bumped back to 2002. No reason was given for the delay.
Danish hard rockers ROYAL HUNT will release their new concept album, The Mission, based on Ray Bradbury's novel The Martian Chronicles, on August 20th. The album's storyline was first introduced via the EP Intervention - Part 1 a couple of months ago, and the whole tale will be concluded by the release of Intervention - Part 2 (working title) later this year, which will contain more non-album tracks. According to reports, The Mission came out “harder and edgier” than the band's previous releases. Here is the full track listing for the CD:
01. Take Off (August 2001 - The Settlers)
02. The Mission (January 1999 - Rocket Summer)
03. Exit Gravity (October 2002 - The Shore)
04. Surrender (April 2000 - The Third Expedition)
05. Clean Sweep (April 2005 - Usher II)
06. Judgement Day (June 2001 - And The Moon Be Still As Bright)
07. Metamorphosis (February 2002 - The Locusts)
08. World Wide War (August 2026 - There Will Come Soft Rains)
09. Dreamline (February 2003 - Interim)
10. Out Of Reach (August 2002 - Night Meeting)
11. Fourth Dimension (November 2005 - The Watchers)
12. Days Of No Trust (April 2026 - The Long Years)
13. Total Recall (November 2005 - The Off Season)
All songs were reportedly written by keyboardist Andre Andersen, except “Surrender” and “World Wide War” (which were co-written by Andersen and vocalist John West) and “Dreamline” (which was co-written by Andersen and guitarist Jacob Kjaer).
According to an online posting from DOKKEN bassist Jeff Pilson, former EUROPE and current DOKKEN guitarist John Norum is due to arrive in Los Angeles this week to do some writing with mainman Don Dokken for the group's next studio album, which is due in early 2002.
LIFER (formerly known as STRANGERS WITH CANDY) will embark on a national tour with COLD and DOPE staring in late August and ending in late September. LIFER's self-titled debut CD, which was produced by RUSH guitarist Alex Lifeson, is due to be released through Republic/Universal Records on August 14th.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
HAYSEED DIXIE PERFORMS FOR AC/DC's CLIFF WILLIAMS AT ROCKER'S MOUNTAIN RETREAT BASSIST JAMS WITH HAYSEED DIXIE
THE APPALACHIANS – AC/DC have taken notice of HAYSEED DIXIE, the quartet which has won notice for its hillbilly renditions of AC/DC songs on its debut album on DTR/Dualtone Records. The band recently performed at a tour wrap party at the East Coast mountain retreat of AC/DC bass player Cliff Williams. Two other AC/DC members set to attend the party were waylaid but the spirit of the band burned brightly as HAYSEED DIXIE played two full sets of AC/DC music, plus bluegrass standards — and even a KISS song or two.
Williams joined the HAYSEED boys onstage in a bluegrass rendition of AC/DC's 'Have A Drink On Me'.
Williams told HAYSEED members: 'I've been playing a lot of these songs for 20-something years. You guys make me excited about performing them again.'
'It sure is powerful strange that Cliff would build his summer home just down the road apiece from where we all come from,' says HAYSEED DIXIE's Barley Scotch. 'Of course now we never spent much time in that particular neighborhood before.'
HAYSEED DIXIE's A Hillbilly Tribute to AC/DC charts this week at #48* (Pacesetter) on the Billboard Country chart. The alternative music magazine Magnet wrote, 'A couple listens to the DIXIES and you'll be rockin' on the back porch and knockin' back a jug.'
For more info, visit the band's official web site.
INCANTATION have parted ways with bassist Rob Yench. For touring and recording purposes, the band have enlisted Joe Lombard, a friend of the band's that is said to be a temporary replacement until a permanent bassist is found.
L.A. GUNS, now including their original frontman Phil Lewis, will return to Europe this September for their first tour of the continent since 1992. The band are supporting their new album, Man In The Moon, which was released earlier this year through Spitfire Records. The dates are as follows:
Sept. 22 – Nottingham, UK @ Rock City
Sept. 23 – Bristol, UK @ Bierkeller
Sept. 24 – Dudley, UK @ JB's
Sept. 25 – London, UK @ Underworld
Sept. 26 – London, UK @ Underworld
Sept. 28 – Bradford, UK @ Bradford Rios
Sept. 29 – Manchester, UK @ Manchester University
Former LILLIAN AXE members Ron Taylor and Darrin Delatte have formed a new band named VELVET POKER DOGS. For more information, visit the band's official web site at this location.
SINERGY vocalist Kimberly Goss has posted the following update on the recording process for the group's upcoming third full-length album, entitled Suicide By My Side, which is currently being tracked at Gotheburg. Sweden's Studio Fredman for a January 14th, 2002 release through Nuclear Blast Records:
“Our 3rd day here in Gothenburg! The new Studio Fredman is much nicer than the old one (there is a playststion 2, among other cool things ). 2 'band rooms' with tv, dvd, stereos, darts, grand piano, etc... 2 control rooms filled with state of the art equipment, nice kitchen, bedroom, etc...
“Tommi is now recording the drums to the 4th song and it's sounding totally killer and powerful! He should be done with the drums by tomorrow night.
“On a bad note, I caught someone trying to break into [guitarist] Alexi [Laiho]'s car the first night we were here. I scared the hell outta them though (screaming at the top of my lungs as I looked out the window down below to see them trying to break the locks off the doors). They were 2 little pieces of sh.t who didn't have a clue about breaking into cars. They managed to only get away with a door handle.”
Turkey's MEZAR KABUL (formerly PENTAGRAM) will release their brand new album, entitled Unspoken, on September 24th through Noise Records. Also in the works is a Turkey-only mini-CD release, entitled Bir, featuring three instrumental and five additional songs with Turkish lyrics.
Sweden's THEORY IN PRACTICE are presently at Hangar 18 Studios in Sandviken, Sweden recording the follow-up to Armageddon Theories. Entitled Colonizing the Sun, the album will reportedly contain nine tracks of technical death metal. The full track listing for the CD is as follows:
01. The Clockwork that Counts Aeons
02. Colonizing The Sun
03. Replica Dawn
05. The Psycomantum Litany
07. Vonspiracy in Cloning
08. Ashen Apocrypha
Colonizing The Sun, which will feature artwork by former SOILWORK keyboardist Carlos del olmo Holmberg, is due to be issued through Listenable Records before the end of the year.