The new lineup of SPIRITUAL BEGGARS — the Swedish band featuring ARCH ENEMY guitarist Michael Amott and bassist Sharlee D'Angelo, along with new vocalist Apollo Papathanasio (FIREWIND) — made its live debut this past Friday (October 1) at Kyttaro club in Athens, Greece.
Commented Amott: "We had a blast on our brief visit to Athens, Greece!
"The Greeks know how to enjoy rock music and have a good time... The crowd was very enthusiastic and really carried us through this first show for us in a bunch of years...
"Thank you, guys and girls!
"We are now preparing and looking forward to bringing SPIRITUAL BEGGARS back to Japan later this month!"
Fan-filmed video footage of SPIRITUAL BEGGARS' first live show in five years can be viewed at this location. A couple of the clips are available below.
SPIRITUAL BEGGARS's seventh studio album, "Return To Zero", was released in Japan on August 25 via Trooper Entertainment Inc. — the label founded by legendary Japanese heavy metal music industry guru Tetsu Miyamoto. The Japanese special edition comes in a glossy paper box with a poster and a sticker of the CD front cover. The Japanese edition also features a bonus track, a thunderous cover of URIAH HEEP's "Time To Live" off the legendary U.K. band's 1971 "Salisbury" record.
"Return To Zero" will be released in North America on October 12 via InsideOut Music. The follow-up to 2005's "Demons" was recorded at Sweetspot Studio with producer Rickard Bengtsson.
"Return To Zero" track listing:
01. Return To Zero (intro)
02. Lost In Yesterday
03. Star Born
04. The Chaos Of Rebirth
05. We Are Free
06. Spirit Of The Wind
07. Coming Home
08. Concrete Horizon
09. A New Dawn Rising
10. Believe In Me
11. Dead Weight
12. The Road Less Travelled
A specially priced pre-order bundle package is now available exclusively at CMDistro.com.
The CD artwork was created by the well-known Brazilian artist Gustavo Sazes.
In a recent interview with Japan's Burrn! magazine, Amott stated about the CD, "The new album has a lot of the typical SPIRITUAL BEGGARS trademarks — it's heavy rock with a '70s atmosphere — but I also hear a definite progression and a deeper sense of melody in the songwriting and performances. It's exactly the kind of record I wanted to make with SPIRITUAL BEGGARS in 2010!"
Regarding the band's latest addition, vocalist Apollo Papathanasio (FIREWIND), Amott said, "Apollo's influences are very much rooted in the classic rock and metal of the '70s and '80s. He is the same age as the rest of us in SPIRITUAL BEGGARS, so we instantly shared a lot of common ground musically, and he really connected with the songs and delivered emotional vocals that really impressed us all."
He added, "Apollo does share some similarities with our previous singers — a rough and raw style based in blues and hard rock. He also has influences from the classic metal of the Eighties.
"I was always aware of the fact that he is great singer. However, even I was surprised how well his voice fit SPIRITUAL BEGGARS, in the new and the old songs. Apollo is showing a range and depth on this album that I believe will both surprise and please the SPIRITUAL BEGGARS fans!"
SPIRITUAL BEGGARS 2010 is:
Michael Amott (ARCH ENEMY, CARCASS) - Guitar
Ludwig Witt (FIREBIRD) - Drums
Per Wiberg (OPETH) - Keyboards
Sharlee D'Angelo (ARCH ENEMY, MERCYFUL FATE) - Bass
Apollo Papathanasio (FIREWIND) - Vocals
SPIRITUAL BEGGARS has been confirmed for the Loud Park 10 festival, set to take place October 16-17 at Saitama Super Arena, a multi-purpose indoor arena located in Saitama City, Japan.