Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Trivium to Begin Recording New Album in 2011

Florida metallers Trivium are set to enter Sanford, Florida's Audio Hammer Studios on January 2, 2011 to begin recording their new album. The band will be joined by a production/mixing team consisting of Martin "Ginge" Ford and Colin Richardson. The album is slated for an early 2011 release via Roadrunner Records.

During an interview with the WMHB 89.7 FM metal radio show Metal Mutilation on July 18, 2010, Trivium guitarist Corey Beaulieu discussed the songwriting process for the follow-up to 2008's Shogun:

"We got done [touring in support of Shogun] at the end of March [2010], and we weren't planning on the [new] record coming out until February or March of next year, so we had the rest of the year to just work on it. And it's worked out really good for us — we didn't feel rushed and we were able to take the time to make sure everything is right." He added, "We did more work on this record than we've done on any other record. The stuff is sounding really awesome and we're having a lot of fun doing this."

In reference to the addition of drummer Nick Augusto and his influence on Trivium's sound, Beaulieu said:

"I think he fits more of our writing style, 'cause we play a lot of fast, heavier stuff and his drumming is kind of really on the heavier, aggressive side, so, really, just writing the Trivium songs we [normally] do it, his drumming style adds a lot of energy and intensity to the music - he adds a lot of really cool, creative stuff that makes it really interesting and brings the music to the next level. And just working with him, everything is moving pretty fast. He's like a sponge, like the rest of us - he can grasp new songs really fast. If we have a new song, we can start jamming it really quick and kind of move forward and get to the point where we can just focus on the details of the song instead of just trying to get the song down in the first place. It's really helping propel the songwriting to another level where we can move along quicker and get a lot more work done in a shorter amount of time.

"When people actually get a chance to hear the record, I think they'll be pretty impressed with what's going on, 'cause he's doing some really cool stuff and adding a new flavor to what we do and giving it a new twist. Compared to the last couple of records, the intensity and the energy has really gone up a lot."

Beaulieu was later asked if the new tracks will be as "shred happy" as Trivium's more recent material. Beaulieu replied:

"We've been concentrating more on [making] more to-the-point, catchier songs without going off too much — there's no seven- or eight-minute songs on this one. There's a lot of really cool riffs and a lot of really cool parts, and, obviously, there's guitar solos all over the place. It doesn't sound like Shogun, but it sounds like Trivium. It's a got a different feel than Shogun - it's a lot more in your face and heavier and faster. It kind of balances out everything - we've got four or five songs that are all screaming, we've got a couple of songs that are all singing, and huge songs that are kind of a mix - kind of Acendancy [2005] kind of vocal style, [with both] screaming and singing, so there's a good variety, which makes it really interesting to listen to, because each song has its own thing going on, so they all stand out really well and fit together, too. It's got a good balance of everything, but the energy and the intensity is just a lot more up there. I guess if you compare it to anything as far as being aggressive, it's probably more towards Ascendancy than anything else."

Reagrding the new Trivium lyrics and their direction, Beaulieu went on to say:

"Everything is not finished, but [guitarist/vocalist Matt Heafy is] further along in the lyrics than he has been on the last few records. I think there are six or seven songs where the lyrics are pretty much there and then there's some of the newer songs that we've put together that he's still piecing together and figuring out what the songs are. All the lyrics are really cohesive and really kind of all fit together, have the same kind of vibe. It makes the whole record one cohesive piece instead of each song being just randomly about something else."

The song "Shattering the Skies Above" was featured on the EP soundtrack for the popular PlayStation3 game, God of War III. God of War: Blood & Metal was released on March 2, 2010 via Roadrunner Records as part of the God of War III Ultimate Edition. The EP also featured unreleased tracks from other Roadrunner artists, including Dream Theatre, Taking Dawn, Opeth, and Killswitch Engage.

Paragon Issues Band Update

German power metallers Paragon have issued an official update regarding the band's future plans. The update was made through bassist Jan Bunning:

"We are very proud to announce that the producer of our next album will be none other than Piet Sielck. We already worked with him on four of our previous albums (Steelbound [2001], Law of the Blade [2002], The Dark Legacy [2003], and Revenge [2005]) and it will for sure be like a coming home for us. Piet worked with bands like Saxon and Blind Guardian and knows best what we have to sound like.

"At present we are gathering ideas and riffs and already have completed some rough versions of two songs and ideas for about four others. I can already tell you that the stuff sounds very old school and back to the our roots!" (Read More)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Hemoptysis Streaming New Song

Hemoptysis is currently streaming a new song online. "Misanthropic Slaughter" can now be heard via the band's MySpace page.

In addition, the band has checked in with the following update:

"It is time to share some updates! We are proud to say that we received the Metal Band of the Year from 2010 LA/Phoenix Music Awards this past Thursday, November 18, at The Paramount Theater in Hollywood, CA! We are very honored to have received this special award for two consecutive years now and we want thank you for your support and encouragement!

"Also, we need to tell you that our debut, full length record Misanthropic Slaughter will be out in Spring, 2011. More details will be announced soon, so don't forget to check our websites regularly." (Read More)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

As You Drown Comments on Upcoming Album

Swedish death metallers As You Drown have started writing new material for their currently untitled sophomore album, due to be released via Metal Blade Records in 2011. The new album, which will be a follow-up to 2009's Reflection, is set to be recorded at the band's own AYD Studio in Borås Sweden.

As You Drown recently commented on their work on the new album:

"Since coming home from our tour with Vader and Divine Chaos earlier this year, we've been working hard on some new material. Right now we've got our sights set on recording some time in the spring, which means the record will hopefully be out in the early fall." (Read More)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Dimmu Borgir Guitarist Interviewed on Finland's Kaaos TV

Arto Mäenpää of Kaaos TV recently conducted an interview with guitarist Silenoz (real name: Sven Atle Kopperud) of the Norwegian symphonic black metal act Dimmu Borgir. The interview was recorded when the band played a show at Pakkahuone in Tampere, Finland on October 14, 2010. The chat can be streamed below.

According to Blabbermouth.net, the current tour lineup for Dimmu Borgir includes bassist Terje Andersen and keyboardist Geir Bratland. However, this has yet to be confirmed by the band itself.

During its first week of release, Abrahadabra, Dimmu Borgir's ninth album, sold 9,400 copies in the U.S. The album subsequently landed at the No. 42 position on the Billboard 200 chart. In Sorte Diaboli, the band's previous 2007 release, sold 14,000 units in its opening week and debuted at No. 43, more than doubling the 6,400 first-week numbers recorded in 2003 with the release of Death Cult Armageddon.

Abrahadabra was released on September 24 in Germany. The album was released to the rest of Europe on September 27 and was available in North America on October 12 via Nuclear Blast Records.

Ghoul Patrol Issues Band Update

Finland's Ghoul Patrol has issued the following update concerning the recording of new material and upcoming tour dates:

"Hell Yeah! So, the Dimebag Beyond Forever tour starts tomorrow and we can't wait to get on the road! We hope to see a lot of people at the shows especially, because this is the last time the tour will be held.

"In other news, we recorded some new songs last month and one of them (Louisiana Pit) can be listened to, at our MySpace. Also, the compilation album is in the prints! (finally...) So anyone who has been asking about CDs, now is the time to get one! The album will be also available at the DBF tour shows." (Read More)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Woods of Desolation Reveals New Album Release Date

Australian metal act Woods of Desolation has issued the following update:

"I have received news that the official release date for the new Woods of Desolation album, Torn Beyond Reason, will be February 25th via Northern Silence Productions. I have been assured that this date is final and will not change anymore. I know the wait has been long for this new album, but I assure you if you like what you have heard thus far, the wait will be definitely worth it!" (Read More)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Municipal Waste Announces European Tour Dates

Richmond, Virginia thrash metallers Municipal Waste will return to Europe next week to embark on a headlining tour. The band recently wrapped up a short US tour and will kick off their European tour on Friday, December 3, in Belfast, UK. Saviours and Ramming Speed will be the supporting acts. Municipal Waste drummer Dave Witte commented on the tour, saying:

"We are ready to return to the UK/EU with Saviours and Ramming Speed to celebrate our last tour of the year. It's gonna be awesome! Get there early, this is a great bill that you won't wanna miss!"

Front man Tony Foresta added:

"I'm really looking forward to getting back over there. It feels like it's been forever since we've been. It seems like each time we come back the crowds get bigger and crazier." (Read More)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Amalgama Issues Band Update

Amalgama has released an official update concerning the band's recent and upcoming activities:

"Winter arrived here in upstate New York a few weeks ago. While technically the season doesn't start until just before Christmas you wouldn't know it had you been looking out the window at any point during that particular day. John has been immersed in StarCraft 2 for the last month after playing catch-up with everything following this year's election cycle (Watch the video until the end... gotta love politics!). Blizzard has created a soul-sucking machine with WoW and SC2. If you encounter either of these games, run away. If you value your free time you'll heed our warnings.

"In other exciting non-weather related news, Amalgama performed 'Forsaken Soldiers' on After Hours with Joe Bonilla, a local program here in the Capital Region. The taping was last Friday afternoon and will probably be the most metal thing that local access has ever seen (it premiered locally last night at 11pm and will be up on the interwebs shortly). The whole afternoon was quite the experience: the actual studio was deep in the bowels of super complex of a building on a local college campus literally in a 'sub-basement.' We felt like we were in some kind of Resident Evil style facility where some monster was going to pop out and rip us apart. Once we arrived on location the stage was set and there was much bullshitting around while we waited for the audience to file in. Joe Bonilla is a personal friend of John and was very gracious to interview him before our performance. TV studios are hot places as we discovered rather quickly during that afternoon deep underground. All those goddamn lights." (Read More)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Anvil Anthology to Be Released; Album Details Revealed

Canadian metal legends Anvil have signed on with The End Records. Currently, the band is recording its new album, Juggernaut of Justice, at Dave Grohl's Studio 606 in Northridge, California with producer Bob Marlette (Alice Cooper, Filter, Black Sabbath). The album is slated for a spring 2011 release.

Before the release of Juggernaut of Justice, The End Records will release a definitive Anvil anthology. The collection will include old and new material as well as a few surprises and will showcase the band's entire career from 1978.

Singer/guitarist Steve "Lips" Kudlow commented on the band's latest studio venture: "I must say that this is by far the best Anvil ever. There will be a few new surprises including [bassist] Glenn 5's first lead vocals in Anvil's history. The production that Bob Marlette has done far surpasses anything we've done in the past. The excitement within the band is over the top and we can't wait to unleash this amazing CD to the fans."

Added drummer Robb Reiner: "The new album is pure Anvil with a new fresh kick, very exciting ... Looking to rocking with The End, putting the music where it belongs - in everybody's ears and face!"

During an interview with Suite101.com in 2009, Reiner spoke about Anvil's up-coming album, saying it would be "...the best album we've ever done. We've invented a new genre; we've invented metal-jazz ... We've pioneered something that I believe is going to be revolutionary. I'm a jazz drummer: the world knows that I just happen to be in a metal band. And Lips listens to a lot of old-time swing jazz these days." Lips added, "I've been getting into Benny Goodman and Gene Krupa, really fast swing. It's really similar to speed metal, it's just that it's done with horns." Reiner continued, "We play this stuff live right now, and it blows people away beyond anything I've ever seen. We've innocently created something that's never been done before."

A tour to support the release of Juggernaut of Justice is currently in the works. Details regarding dates and locations will be announced shortly.

Evile Guitarist Interviewed by Metal Assault Radio

Metal Assault Radio's DJ Shredder recently sat down with Ol Drake - guitarist for British thrash band Evile. The interview was conducted in Sayreville, New Jersey when the band made a scheduled stop for a performance with Overkill. The chat can be streamed via Blabbermouth.net.

Evile is currently in North America as part of a three-month tour with Overkill, Forbidden, Gama Bomb, and Bonded by Blood. The trek will wrap on December 18 in Salt Lake City, Utah. The band will then return to the U.K. for a break over the holiday period before hitting the road again in the New Year. (Read More)

Monday, November 22, 2010

Asking Alexandria to Release Remix Album

English metalcore band Asking Alexandria recently completed a North American tour with All That Remains. The band will now spend the remainder of the year touring the U.K. on a series of headlining shows. The band has also announced the release of a remix album titled Stepped Up and Scratched (Stand Up and Scream Remix) in January 2011. The album will be a remixed, electro/dubstep version of the band's debut album Stand Up and Scream. it will also include all new artwork and packaging.

Guitarist Ben Bruce recently checked in with an update following the band's most recent tour:

"I can't really think of many words to sum up the All That Remains tour. The only words that really come to mind are fucking awesome. It was a great tour. We made some great friends during this five week trek across America and had some really amazing times. The crowds at every show were great. We had our loyal and dedicated fans come out to see us, and I feel like we won a lot of new fans on this tour as well." (Read More)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Angertea Comments on Upcoming EP

Hungarian progressive metallers Angertea have issued an official update regarding the release of a new three-song EP:

"These days we have received the first mixes of the new songs from Neil Kernon, and they really kick ass! They are soon being sent to have it mastered to a mastering engineer called Alan Douches, who made albums of such bands as The Dillinger Escape Plan, Sepultura, Deicide, Madball, Mastodon, Misfits, etc. We'll soon be done with the 3 songs!" (Read More)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Kataklysm Updates Live Show Schedule

Canadian death metal act Kataklysm has made some updates to the band's forthcoming tour schedule for North America, south America, Europe, and South Africa.

"In just about a month we will embark on Katakalysm's longest one way headlining stretch crossing four continents in nearly 20 years," commented vocalist Maurizio Iacono. "Heaven's Venom has been welcomed with open arms by fans and critics alike across the globe. As I mentioned before in interviews, Heaven's Venomis a very personal, aggressive and dark Kataklysm album that hits home. We love this album and want to share its anger with our fans! We want to play places we have never been before and also revisit our loyal supporters while creating some new fans along the way. One thing we know, is that this will be the only time you will be able to see the band on this record or for a long time. So don't say 'I'll catch them the next time' because there might not be a next time. We are thinking of taking along break after this massive trek and who knows what will happen next. So if you are a fan of Kataklysm you have been called to duty!" (Read More)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Bobby Liebling Discusses New Pentagram Album in Recent Interview

In a recent interview with MetalSucks.Net, Pentagram front man Bobby Liebling revealed some news regarding the band's forthcoming album. Below are some excerpts from that interview:

MS: You're off to record the Last Rites album soon, I believe?

Bobby: I leave Wednesday morning and we start recording the album this coming Sunday night [November 21].

MS: I'm sure you’re pretty excited about it. Can you tell me a bit about the new record?

Bobby: Actually, the songs on Last Rites are predominantly, I'd say two-thirds [of them are] songs I wrote in 1970, and if you're familiar with any Pentagram stuff at all... you know each album is usually a sixty-forty split. Sixty percent is stuff that I did in the early '70s, and forty percent is collaborations and new stuff. The upcoming album is slated to have thirteen songs, but we don't know if we're going to be able to record all of them. We're going to try to get it all in. It's going to be a shorter album, but it'll be part of a double-disc set with an hour-long live DVD from last year’s Maryland Deathfest.

MS: Is there a definite release date for it?

No, not a definite date, but it's scheduled to be released in early April. I was told by my superiors [laughs], as it were, that I shouldn't talk about the record label, but I will say that we've got a multi-album deal and it's with a significant, well, let's say the largest label I've ever been on.

MS: That's great, congratulations!

Bobby: Thank you, it's been long enough coming. 2011 marks Pentagram's fortieth anniversary.

MS: Wow, that's a good, long run. Hopefully with many more years to come.

Bobby: We'll see! That's why I'm calling it Last Rites, just in case! But there are four songs that are brand-new, and the other nine consist of several I wrote on my own, and a few I wrote with my original drummer, Geof O'Keefe. Those are the ones scheduled to be on there. But one of the old ones might go, as well as a new one. We're doing a cram course, you might call it. All the other Pentagram albums that have been done were recorded over a three-month period. This album is going to be done in three weeks. We're rehearsing it five days, that's it, and these songs have never been played by anyone in the band [currently]. (Read More)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Stratovarius Drummer Diagnosed with Cancer

Swedish keyboardist Jens Johansson of multi-national melodic metallers Stratovarius has issued the following update:

"Dear Stratovarius fans, I am afraid we have some quite terrible news. News of the worst imaginable kind. It's about our friend and drummer Jörg Michael.

"Jörg has cancer.

"He recently discovered a lump on his neck, went to the doctor, they decided to operate, and found what they call 'a malignant thyroid neoplasm.' They took out his whole thyroid just to have the best chance to get everything out. He will also have to undergo a regimen of radiotherapy.

"He is a fighter. We have all talked to him and it's clear that this guy is not down for the count. He and his team of German doctors are pissed off and ready to kick ass, and I would not want to be a little cancer cell on these guys' shit list.. believe me.

"Jörg and his family (and us guys in the band) found this out only last week, after the operation. Naturally we are all going between a lot of emotions, sadness, worry, shock, confusion, even anger." (Read More)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Dixie Deathwish Issues Update

Dixie Deathwish has issued the following update regarding their recent decision to disband:

"We have decided to keep the name Dixie Deathwish. We have made this decision for a couple of reasons. The first being that we really like the name. The second is that despite the fact that we might not have had the best relationships with some venues or bands in the past we are determined to change all of that. Third let's face it some bands and other people in the area would have loved to see us drop the name and kind of admit defeat, but that is just not our style. We are determined to come back with a ferocity on stage on rivaled by few in this area and we look forward to sharing the stage with those bands and i think they know who they are." (Read More)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Dani Filth Issues Band Update

Cradle of Filth front man Dani Filth has issued the following blog update about the band's current and upcoming activity:

"Dear readers, belated happy Hallowe'en! Well, has the endless wait been worth it? The album has been out a fortnight in Europe and a week in the US and has garnered all kinds of remarkable press, from the utterly brilliant to the shit and insane. I love it. The circus starts again. At least on the front of it it seems that again we have divided peoples opinions. Love/hate, loathe/adore, suckle/chastise us; it's all so deliciously Catholic.

"Firstly let me apologize for the slight delay people have had to endure for the limited edition box-set, I know it's not cool, but the production was held up by all kinds of issues, so all I can do is to offer you my sincerest regret. And a test tube full of my love juice." (Read More)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Crustacean Signs to Xtreem Music

Xtreem Music has issued the following announcement about inking a deal with Dutch thrash act Crustacean:

"Veteran dutch thrashers Crustacean have inked a deal with Xtreem Music for the release of their long awaited 3rd album Greed, Tyranny & Sodomy. Crustacean has been around since 1994 and has since released a mini CD Headcleaner ('95) and two full- length albums: Burden of our Suffering ('98) and Insaniac ('03). After a promotional tour the band spent time on other successful live projects only to re-appear in the best line-up ever in 2007. Since then the band has been focusing on writing their best and most intense thrash metal album ever, Greed, Tyranny & Sodomy." (Read More)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Judas Priest to Launch New World Tour in 2011

K.K. Downing, guitarist for the iconic British heavy metal band Judas Priest, recently published a new blog post on his official website. In the post, Downing revealed that Priest will be embarking on a world tour beginning in 2011. The official message can be viewed below:

"It seems that the time has come for us to put the touring wheels in motion for our next world tour in 2011!

"It's funny but these days around - about this time - I can't help but reflect on the past when we had to load the touring van ourselves. Sometimes in the ice and snow, being afraid that we would get frostbites on our fingers and not be able to play the gig!

"I remember one winter we had a gig at Hull City Hall in England. We were driving in heavy snow when we hit black ice and the car hit the motorway barriers so hard that it was never able to be driven again. However, it was fortunate that a passing farmer saved the day by letting us pile into his old Land Rover and was kind enough to drive us to the gig!

"It seems just like yesterday, as they say, that we were on tour with our good friends Budgie, Accept, Warlock, AC/DC, Saxon, Pantera...to name just a few. Very good memories indeed!

"Actually, I have just received a copy of Accept's new album Blood of the Nations. And was really happy that Wolf [Hoffmann] and the boys are still creating great classic metal. I think it was back in '81 that Priest and Accept hit the road together for the first time and what a great tour that was! I really hope that we can meet up with the guys next year, at least on some of the festival dates and have a good laugh when talking about the old times." (Read More)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Sorrows Path Announces Release Party

Greek act Sorrows Path has issued the following update regarding an upcoming record release show:

"Sorrows Path release live-party show for the new album The Rough Path of Nihilism, out from German Rock it Up Records! The band is back from Germany where they had their party for the new release in Karlsruhe and celebrate their official release at historical An Club in Athens, on Sunday, December 5! This time, they will also perform live the new songs plus some of their old, with very special guests and happenings.

"On stage, along with the band, there will be the well known fetish dancers, Zirconia, Alexia and Julia, with many participations in Greek and abroad show The guest vocalist of the new album, vocal teacher Eleni Danielson also taking part in backing vocals! Guest bands are the ex-EMI signed rock-metal doomsters Infidel, who are ready to release their new second album too and the mature progressive quartet Solid Faith, with some demos that earned great feedback in the past." (Read More)

Friday, November 12, 2010

HammerFall to Enter the Studio

Sweden's HammerFall is set to enter the recording studio in two weeks to record their follow-up to 2009's No Sacrifice, No Victory. Guitarist Oscar Dronjak reveals: "The new material contains a lot of fresh ways to look at the musical ideas, we're trying to preserve the essence of what HammerFall is while at the same time updating the execution and approach. Definitely heavier and less straight forward than the previous albums, yet remaining true to what we believe heavy metal is all about."

The band has decided to work with producer James Michael, who has worked with the likes of Mötley Crüe, Scorpions, and Meat Loaf. Oscar explains: "Working with James Michael is going to be very, very exciting. The two Mötley Crüe albums James has been involved in (songwriter on New Tattoo and songwriter/producer on Saints of Los Angeles) are great, and easily stack up against the classic albums of the 80s." (Read More)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Gates of Slumber Prepare to Enter Studio

Doom metal giants The Gates of Slumber are set to enter England's Orgone Studios in late November with producer Jaime Gomez Arellano. They will begin recording a new album which is scheduled for a spring 2011 release via Rise Above Records.

Recently, the band announced the addition of drummer J "Cool" Clyde Paradis. A New Orleans native and Hurricane Katrina survivor, Paradis previously worked with the likes of Sourvein, Substance Abuse, and the New Orleans blues act T-Bone and the Rhythm Makers.

Frontman/guitarist Karl Simon commented on The Gates of Slumber's sound saying:

"The new music is taking on a more troglodyte doom metal feel. With Clyde now in the band, the feel of things was bound to change; he's not only a different drummer, but from a totally different school of thought with regards to the drums. It's no secret that Saint Vitus' shuddering doom crawl was the root that inspired this band and we'd both felt that over three albums we'd taken the raw epic feel as far as we could. Now, it's time to get back to basics, shed some of the bulk and get ugly again. No warriors this time, no acoustic guitars, no keyboards, no lofty Nietzschean ideals. Just black bile and a bit of the old 'white magic; black magic.'" (Read More)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Shadow Eden Releases Debut Album

New York-based progressive metallers Shadow Eden have released their debut, self-titled album. Often noted for their incorporation of various musical stylings, including metal, rock, and jazz, the instrumental trio draw influence from the likes of Joe Satriani, Jaco Pastorius, Vinnie Moore, Kansas, and King Crimson, to name a few.

Recently, the band announced that it would be appearing at the 2011 National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) show in Anaheim, California. They will be guests of Charvel Guitars and Morley Pedals and will perform on January 14 and 15. More recently, Shadow Eden have been playing various dates in New York with guitarist and composer Joe Stump. Stump himself has commented on the band's stylings and debut album, saying:

"A power trio of excellent players, Shadow Eden combine elements of progressive rock, fusion and guitar-driven metal into well structured, highly musical, and very listenable tunes. Guitarwise Dave Mercado shows a great diverse range of styles in his playing as well as some killer take-no-prisoners technique. Their debut record will certainly appeal to a wide range of fans that enjoy virtuosic, guitar-driven music."

Shadow Eden's debut album is available via their official website. A variety of their tracks are also featured on the band's official MySpace page.

Shadow Eden are:
David Mercado - guitars
Kenny Weydener - basses
Kenny Lane - drums

"We're a live band and we love to play live," Says Raven Guitarist

69 Faces of Rock's Mark Kadzielawa recently conducted an interview with brothers John and Mark Gallagher of the veteran British/American heavy metal trio Raven. Excerpts from the chat have now been published via Blabbermouth.net.

69 Faces of Rock: The energy of the new album is quite unbelievable, very reminiscent of the early Raven years.

Mark: We're a live band, and we love to play live. And one thing that was always difficult for us to record is that live Raven feel onto an album. Not because of us, but because of other factors like the people we worked with, or the studio environment. I was really happy with this record that it sounds like a live Raven.

John: And it's just a question of having the right performances with the right songs, and the right sounds. It's just a magical thing when the stars are aligning. It comes together well.

69 Faces of Rock: The title Walk Through Fire couldn't be more right considering everything that had happened in the last few years. I suppose the title was very intentional, right?

Mark: It was intentional. I don't know where did I get that from, but it just came to me. There was a time where the doctors were gonna take one of my legs away. And when you're dealing with something as serious as that, it makes you think hard. If you listen to the album, 80% of the songs are about overcoming adversity, and that's something everybody has to deal with in their lives. It's a common theme for everybody, and I think people can get something from it. Over the last few months, we've had fans come up to us and say that certain songs got them through a lot of hard times in their lives. And we appreciate it. To have that type of effect on people is good, but that was personal thing for me. And it really sums up a lot of things for the band. We've had to deal with a lot of things, not just me being sick, but there were other things like management, and so on. (Read More)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Batillus Sign to Seventh Rule

Seventh Rule Recordings has issued the following announcement about signing New York doom act Batillus:

"Seventh Rule proudly welcomes Brooklyn doom quartet Batillus to its stormy roster. With songs that move from bristling blast beats to subterranean crawls, Batillus (buh-TILL-us) cohere the extremes of heavy music into a surge of massive riffing, rolling over and descending on the listener with the force and intensity of a sudden storm.

"The New Yorker describes Batillus as 'a sludgy four-piece that slows monstrous Black Sabbath riffs to a crawl to produce highly textured compositions of droning doom-metal,' and Revolver calls their music 'beyond-atmospheric blackened doom.'" (Read More)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Behemoth Frontman Finds Bone Marrow Donor

Adam "Nergal" Darski, who is suffering from leukemia, has revealed that he has finally found a matching bone marrow donor. The Behemoth frontman issued a message (translated from Polish), and it reads as follows:

"Hello. Still from my hospital bed, but really in pretty good shape I am writing to inform you about my health and the further stages of treatment.

"At the moment I am on the fourth and final chemistry and more than 3 month stay in hospital. All the treatments went like a storm though not without some serious "holes". Thus, I close this stage of medications and will soon begin radiation, and then, waiting for my bone marrow.

"Yes, yes, we have a donor! :-)))

"After months of searching, the foundation has found the person whose genotype is identical with mine. It would be difficult to achieve if they did not support a large number of people." (Read More)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Lich King Splits with Guitarists

Massachusetts-based thrash metaller Lich King have officially announced that they will be parting ways with guitarists Kevin Taylor and Erick Herrera:

"Due to scheduling and transportation issues, Erick and Kevin are leaving Lich King. Erick’s got a band closer to home starting up, called Hanging Judge, and Kevin’s going for his master’s degree. None of this is personal in this amicable split, we love these guys and wish them the best. Even still, we’re so going to badmouth them in our Behind The Music episode.

"So, part 2 of the announcement. Can you see where this is going? That’s right. We’re announcing a nationwide hunt for two new Lich King members. Joe’s upgrading to guitar so we need a guitarist and a bassist. (Read More)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Cannibal Corpse Kicks off East Coast Tour

Cannibal Corpse recently issued an official statement regarding both the release of a new tab book and the kick-off of a series of new tour dates:

"Fans have been asking Cannibal Corpse how they play their songs for years. Finally, musicians and fans alike will now be able to see exactly how some of the most intense death metal is played in a new tab book from Cannibal Corpse! The new tab book, published by Hal Leonard, transcribes thirteen Cannibal Corpse fan favorites, including: "Devoured by Vermin," "Frantic Disembowelment," "I Will Kill You," "Make Them Suffer," "Pit of Zombies," "Staring Through the Eyes of the Dead," "Vomit the Soul," "The Wretched Spawn," and more. If your local music store carries tab books and doesn't have this in stock – make sure to ask for it! Don't miss Cannibal Corpse on tour starting November 5th with Dying Fetus, Vital Remains, and Devourment!" (Read More)

Friday, November 5, 2010

PAIN Working on New Album

Peter Tägtgren of the Swedish music project PAIN has issued the following update:

"What the hell is going on?! Well... It's been a while since the last update and we thought it was about time to let you in on a couple of things."

"The last couple of months every one of us has been pretty busy with anything but PAIN. As you may know Peter has been concentrating on Hypocrisy this year and recently came home from a successful tour in South America. David, who just got signed up with Zildjian, is working for Unique Pyrotechnic along with doing a lot of different stand-in club shows in Sweden. Johan became a dad in August (best wishes from us all), and the more time spent away from PAIN means the more time spent with his family. Michael is working with different side projects along with his work for Digidesign." (Read More)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Benevolent Posts Entire EP for Free Download

Kuwait-based metal band Benevolent recently released their debut five-track EP, Divided. The album was recorded throughout 2010 at Sarj's Studio - one of the fastest growing recording studios in the Middle East. It was co-produced by Hadi Sarieddine and Sajid "Sarj" Masoud.

Divided is now available as a free download via Benevolent's Bandcamp page.

Fadi Sarieddine, Benevolent's co-founder and lead vocalist, commented on the recording process saying, "It was such a great experience! Just looking back at how these songs slowly came to life is such a great feeling! I really feel that we got to experience and learn so much about ourselves as musicians and as people through out this process...and it's just great to be on the other side with everything done. I hope that listeners enjoy this record as much as we enjoyed putting it together!" (Read More)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

First-Week Sales for Triptykon's Shatter Revealed

Shatter, the new five-track EP from Triptykon has sold roughly 500 copies in the U.S. in its first week of release. The CD sits at the No. 90 position on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists best-selling albums by new and developing artists (defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200). Shatter was released on October 25 in Europe and on October 26 in North America. The EP has a playing time of approximately 28 minutes and consists of almost entirely of previously unreleased music.

Triptykon was formed in 2008 by Thomas Gabriel Fischer (a.k.a. Tom Gabriel Warror) - former singer, guitarist, and main songwriter for Hellhammer and Celtic Frost. The band also consists of V. Santura (guitar, vocals), Vanja Slajh (bass), and Norman Lonhard (drums, percussion). (Read More)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Iron Maiden: Around the World in 66 Days

Heavy metal giants Iron Maiden have announced that they will once again take to the skies to tour the globe. The band will board Ed Force One in 2011 to continue their Final Frontier World Tour.

Today (November 2), at 6:00 PM GMT, the band revealed that they, their crew, and their massive amount of equipment would be travelling via the band's own Boeing 757 to a selection of concert destinations starting February 2011. Iron Maiden will fly 50,000 miles on their continuing tour, playing 29 shows and visiting 26 cities in 13 countries across 5 continents (with frontman Bruce Dickinson again in the pilot's seat, of course).

Dickinson commented on the tour in a statement on the band's official website:

"We were taken aback by the fantastic reaction from everyone to Ed Force One during the 2008/09 World Tour. As our fans all know from the Flight 666 film, which documented the trials and tribulations we underwent in order to get the whole project literally off the ground, the end result was well worth all the effort and complex logistics we had to deal with! The band and crew enjoyed themselves so much travelling that way, it seemed only logical to set up this part of The Final Frontier tour in the same way so we could get to see as many fans as possible all over the World, only this time we're pushing the boundaries even further and going to more places Maiden has never been before... in true Frontier style!! We very much look forward to playing in Singapore, Indonesia and South Korea for the first time, as well as revisiting our fans everywhere else.

"The set list will be different to this year's tour. Of course we will play more songs from the new album and some other recent material, but we will include a healthy dose of older fan favourites as we will be playing to so many new faces who we know will want to hear those songs live for the first time. We will cram into the plane as much of the production we used this year as is physically possible, including of course Eddie, and intend to replicate the spectacular light show in as many places as we are able. All in all it promises to be a fantastic trip for everyone!! So see you all soon." (Read More)

Monday, November 1, 2010

The Autumn Offering Break Up (or "Go on Hiatus")

In a recent statement posted on The Autumn Offering's official MySpace page, vocalist Matt McChesney announced that the band plans to go on indefinite hiatus. He also revealed the possibility of the band breaking up permanently:

"Hey all. Due to Tommy [Church] leaving the band, as well as a million other things, we have decided to take a long break. Possibly just end it, depending on what happens. We haven't been dropped by our label or anything, we are just burnt out. There is no reason to go on and on with bullshit, we are all friends. All you guys know we love you. Personally, I wish everyone well, in whatever they choose to do. As for myself, I have a new band with Jesse Nunn. We will enter the studio next month with producer Logan Mader to start our new record. It's not going to be a metal band, as I am personally done with metal for awhile. I'm disgusted with the state of it, and I don't want to be a part of it..." (Read More)