Legendary actor Christopher Lee, who has appeared in such cinematic milestones as "Lord Of The Rings", "Star Wars", "The Man With The Golden Gun" and "Dracula", released his second heavy metal album, "Charlemagne: The Omens Of Death", on May 27 on audio CD, a two-disc gatefold vinyl and MP3 downloads.
"Charlemagne: The Omens Of Death" signifies Christopher Lee's move into "full-on" heavy metal.
Speaking to Skullbanger Media, Lee stated about his new album: "'The Omens Of Death', apart from being the continuation to the first album, 'By Sword And The Cross', no longer makes use of the introductions to the songs, or has symphonic elements. This creates a different atmosphere which shapes the story.
"Throughout Charlemagne's life, there had been key events which could have taken various turns, and these have shaped the world in which we live today. He was the 'Father of Europe' and responsible for carving the map as it is today.
"As Charlemagne recounts his life, he focuses on these key elements which represent omens, hence the title 'The Omens Of Death'. By attempting to unify the people of Europe and take them out of the dark ages of ignorance and chaos, he also created death and destruction."
Asked how he feels about the fact that he has been a major influence to metal musicians through his film work and now that he is part of the genre itself, Lee said: "Going back to the early stages of my career, my work, my acting has always been influenced by the German composer Wagner. Now that I have been able to listen to many metal albums, I realize that the genre is a direct evolution of the world and the sounds that Wagner imagined. I am, of course, very pleased and honored to have been able to carry these themes through."
Regarding whether there any other heavy metal artists out there he would be interested in collaborating with, Lee said: "It's fair to say that since the early 1970s, I had been asked to do collaborations with metal bands and even now I receive offers from various bands. I guess that the difference between then and now is that I have more time to explore projects that are different and new to me. I take the same approach as when a movie offer comes through: I look at the story and the character that I am asked to portray and if it appeals to me, I will do it. As things stand now, I am already committed into participating in several projects, one of which will be announced fairly soon."
The music in "Charlemagne: The Omens of Death" was arranged by Richie Faulkner. He completed the work shortly before he was called to join JUDAS PRIEST as lead guitarist.
"Charlemagne: The Omens Of Death" track listing:
01. The Portent (4:29)
02. Charles The Great (6:23)
03. The Siege (7:09)
04. Massacre Of The Saxons (5:41)
05. Dawning Of A New Age (4:40)
06. Let Legend Mark Me As The King (5:45)
07. The Betrayal (5:02)
08. The Devil's Advocate (4:54)
09. The Ultimate Sacrifice (5:09)
10. Judgement Day (3:41)
* Christopher Lee as Charlemagne (Ghost)
* Vincent Ricciardi as Young Charlemagne
* Phil S.P as Pippin The Short
* Mauro Conti as Pope Hadrian
* Lydia Salnikova as Hildegard
* Gorgon Tittsworth as Roland
* Aaron Cloutier as Duke Lop
* Daniel Vasconcelos as Oliver
Electric Guitar: Hedras Ramos Jr.
Bass Guitar: Hedras Ramos Sr.
Drums: Ollie Usiskin