British thrashers ONSLAUGHT have been forced to cancel their previously announced appearances at the Metalfest festivals in Germany and Austria due to the fact that the band's lead vocalist, Sy Keeler, was diagnosed with viral laryngitis.
Commented Keeler: "First off, I'd like to say how completely gutted I am that ONSLAUGHT will not be able to make it to the Metalfests this weekend.
"I awoke on Friday feeling a little under the weather with a peculiar feeling in my upper chest and throat. Then I tried to speak and very little came out.
"Obviously, I realized this was something new, something that I'd never experienced before.
"All us singers get a tired voice from time to time, but this was something new.
"I managed to get to see a doctor pretty quickly and I was diagnosed as having laryngitis a viral infection, which, fortunately, leaves no long lasting effect on the voice, just a temporary inability to sing, swollen vocal cords and a general discomfort in the throat. Therefore I found myself having to tell the boys, 'Sorry, the Metalfests are off.'
"I have to rest the voice for one week minimum; I have no choice. The voice doesn't work.
"Huge apologies to the Metalfest organizers and, of course, everyone who was looking forward to witnessing ONSLAUGHT live.
"Thanks for all the 'get well soon' messages I've received so far and I'll see you all soon."
ONSLAUGHT has recruited Michael Hourihan (EXTREME NOISE TERROR, DESECRATION) to play the drums during the band's "Scream For Violence" tour, which kicked off on March 31 in Hamburg, Germany.
Former ONSLAUGHT drummer Steve Grice released a statement to BLABBERMOUTH.NET in which he blamed his decision to quit the group on "a series of events that, in [his] opinion, have seen the recurrence of old patterns of behavior that fuelled the band's original demise in 1991." He added, "This culmination of occurrences came to a head when I learned through a third party that the band had booked a series of shows without my knowledge, and with the intention of using another drummer, during a period of time reserved for family commitments. Be very clear the temporary use of another drummer does not present me with a problem. My issue is with the fact that at no point did anyone from the band let me know that these decisions had been made." He continued, "Again in my opinion, there is a considerable gap between certain parties' view of ONSLAUGHT and the truth in terms of album sales and concert attendances. My reality, that of a father of two approaching 50, was simply incompatible with this alternate world view."
ONSLAUGHT's "The Sound Of Violence" video can be viewed below. The band's first official clip in twenty years (the last being from the group's 1990 full-length, "In Search Of Sanity") was filmed and edited by Lukas Hambach of Bloodwork Entertainment (DESTRUCTION, GAMMA RAY) and produced by Tommy Morriello and Thosten Ltje.
"The Sound Of Violence" comes off ONSLAUGHT's fifth album, "Sounds Of Violence", which was released in January via AFM Records. The follow-up to 2007's "Killing Peace" was recorded and mixed at Hansen Studio in Ribe, Denmark with acclaimed Danish producer Jacob Hansen (RAUNCHY, MERCENARY, VOLBEAT, HEAVEN SHALL BURN).