San Francisco Bay Area metallers MACHINE HEAD have set "Unto The Locust" as the title of their new album, due in late September via longtime label Roadrunner Records. The CD was recorded at JingleTown Studios in Oakland, with frontman Robb Flynn producing, and it is sure to level anything and everything that happens upon its path.
MACHINE HEAD will prepare for the release of their new album by appearing on the main stage of the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival for key dates, while headlining the Extreme Stage for others, this summer, which kicks off this July. This is the band's second tour of duty on Mayhem, as they appeared on the festival during its inaugural run in 2008.
An advance mix of the new MACHINE HEAD song "Locust" was released via iTunes on June 14 and will be included on an iTunes Mayhem digital sampler. Download cards for the digital sampler will be distributed at every date of the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival so fans can redeem the song after being summarily kicked in the face by MACHINE HEAD's always devastating live show.
Flynn previously stated about the meaning of the song, "'Locust' is a metaphor. Locusts fly in a swarm, but they can't control which direction they fly; they float on the wind, they land, cause massive destruction, and then float away on the wind to leave you in the aftermath. The song is a metaphor for a type of person that sometimes comes into your life and has a similar effect."
Musically, the song is the essence of what MACHINE HEAD have been doing for nearly two decades. "It feels like the culmination of what we've been doing for the last 17 years: power grooves, patented MACHINE HEAD harmonics, crushing guitars and dark melodies, but taken to a new level," Flynn said. "It's a natural progression from [2007's] 'The Blackening', but different than anything on that record. In the past, when we debuted a new song, it was usually the fastest, thrashiest tune. This time we wanted to go with something just straight-up heavy."
The song is eight minutes in length, which is not unfamiliar territory for the band. Flynn even joked, "We still can't seem to write a damn song under six minutes. But MACHINE HEAD aren't writing music for the radio or MTV. This is for us. This is for the metalhead who let's music take him on a journey. This for the metalhead for whom music is the only thing that matters, to whom music is a savior. The music fan who's going to study every detail of the artwork, go online and find the lyrics and memorize every word, and let it take them away from their fucked up life for a while. It's for the music freak, who maybe just wants to get hammered, air-guitar and sing at the top of his lungs, and act like an friggin' idiot while starting a moshpit in their living room with reckless abandon. Because that's who wrote this song, and that is the only people we care about connecting with."
"Locust" can be streamed in the YouTube clip below (courtesy of Roadrunner Records).
[Note: This version of the song was mixed by Juan Urteaga (EXODUS, SADUS, TESTAMENT, NIGHT RANGER, VICIOUS RUMORS, HEATHEN, VILE, CATTLE DECAPITATION). The final mix will be handled by longtime MACHINE HEAD producer Colin Richardson (BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE, SLIPKNOT, FEAR FACTORY, TRIVIUM).]
MACHINE HEAD will embark on a European headlining tour, dubbed "The Eighth Plague", in the fall. Support on the trek will come from BRING ME THE HORIZON, DEVILDRIVER and DARKEST HOUR.
"This will no doubt be the heaviest show you're going to see this year," states Flynn. "A lot of the greatest shows of our last touring cycle were in Europe and the U.K., so the prospect of this lineup combined with these crowds has us extremely stoked to get out there and tear it up! New material, great venues, killer fans... we absolutely cannot wait!"
Adds BRING ME THE HORIZON vocalist Oliver Sykes, "We're proper excited for these dates with MACHINE HEAD! We were listening to them before we even started BMTH, so to be going on tour with them is blowin' our minds! These will be our last U.K./Euro dates before we take a break to record our next album as well, so it's gonna be mental! We honestly can't wait."
Says DEVILDRIVER vocalist Dez Fafara, "We always love touring in packages that offer a diversity of styles of metal. This is yet another one of those packages. I would like to personally thank Robb Flynn for inviting us to the party. See you in the fucking pit."
"We are so excited to announce our upcoming winter European tour with MACHINE HEAD, BRING ME THE HORIZON, and DEVILDRIVER," exclaims DARKEST HOUR vocalist John Henry. "European audiences are true purists when it comes to their love for metal music and great metal concerts, so there's no better place in a world for this tour to go down. It will take us to cities we haven't been to in a decade, as well as a few new ones. Meeting new friends and exploring other cultures has always been something we enjoy as a band, and getting to explore some of these places with this great bill for the first time is both a great privilege and an honor. If you can make it out to one of these shows please do, you won't be let down."
For a complete list of dates, go to this location.