According to NBC Bay Area, Oakland, California-based power trio HIGH ON FIRE was a minute away from boarding a plane in Christchurch, New Zealand on February 22 when the 6.3-magnitude temblor rocked the nation's second-largest city. The band was on its way to play a show in Wellington as part of a New Zealand tour with MELVINS, but became stranded after the airport was evacuated.
A video message from HIGH ON FIRE guitarist/vocalist Matt Pike in which he describes the earthquake aftermath can be viewed below.
In a press release on HIGH ON FIRE's web site, the group expressed sympathies for the victims of the disaster.
"Our thoughts go out to all the people of Christchurch who have already been through such agony recently and are now going through much worse," the band said. "To those who have lost loved ones in particular, our deepest sympathies."
HIGH ON FIRE's new album, "Snakes for the Divine", sold around 8,600 copies in its first week of release in the United States to debut at position No. 63 on The Billboard 200 chart. The follow-up to 2007's "Death is this Communion" was made available in North America on February 23 via E1 Music. The album was recorded at The Pass Studios in Los Angeles with producer Greg Fidelman and is described in a press release as "HIGH ON FIRE's magnum opus, capturing every nuance of the legendary band's ongoing musical progression and evolution into one of heavy music's all-time greats."
(Thanks: Hetal Bhatt)