[Classic_Rock_Forever] Iron Maiden, Guns N Roses, Slash, and tons of hard rock and heavy metal news


"En Vivo!", the new concert Blu-Ray and two-DVD set from legendary British metallers IRON MAIDEN, has registered the following first-week chart positions so far:

Australia: #1
Belgium (Flanders): #4
Belgium (Wallonia): #3
Finland: #1
Netherlands: #2
Norway: #1
Sweden: #1
UK: #1

In addition to the Blu-Ray, the two-DVD is available as a limited-edition double DVD in collectors' steel book case and double vinyl picture disc. As well as a traditional two-CD soundtrack album, "En Vivo!" is available as a digital download CD soundtrack album and digital download video.

"En Vivo!" was filmed on April 10, 2011 in front of over 50,000 ecstatic fans at the Estadio Nacional, Santiago during the "Round The World In 66 Days" leg of "The Final Frontier World Tour", and captures a magnificent performance by the band, ardently embraced by the legendary Latino passion and energy of their Chilean fans. With spectacular stage backdrops, dynamic musicianship and a literally jaw-dropping appearance by Eddie, this live show encapsulates to perfection the heart and soul of IRON MAIDEN 2011.

IRON MAIDEN bass player and founder member Steve Harris comments: "For 'The Final Frontier Tour' it was really important to me that we filmed in South America as we're always so overwhelmed by the fans' reaction when we go to that part of the world and I wanted to reflect that in the filming. After much consideration, we chose the Santiago show as we felt it was one of our best performances of the entire tour and to play at the prestigious Estadio Nacional was a landmark moment for us. For reasons known to our fans, it took a long time before we got to play our first show in Chile, and once we did get to play a show, the response was so phenomenal we just had to keep coming back and it's got better and better each time! This show also features the gigantic new Eddie. He wasn't due to make his appearance until our European leg of the tour later in 2011, but we managed to transport him across the sea in a special huge container just in time for the latter end of the South American dates so it was great we were able to immortalize him for the DVD as he really has to be seen to be believed!"

The concert was filmed digitally using 22 HD cameras and an octocam (a flying camera which captures aerial crowd scenes), recorded in both stereo and 5.1 audio and mixed by MAIDEN's longstanding producer Kevin "Caveman" Shirley, all of which serves to accentuate the incredible atmosphere of this compelling performance. Extensive use is made of split screens so fans can follow the individual members closer and the set list moves seamlessly between songs from MAIDEN's most recent studio album, 2010's "The Final Frontier", through to classic fan favourites via the band's vast and varied catalogue (full set listing below).

DVD Disc Two is a bonus disc containing an 88-minute documentary, "Behind The Beast". This is also an entirely in-house production by MAIDEN's own Krew, led by Andy Matthews, and is intended as an interesting and revealing high-quality "home movie" for their fans of how to put on an IRON MAIDEN tour and what goes on behind the scenes at a show. It describes the extraordinary story of one of the most acclaimed and ambitious touring shows in the world. It illustrates the day-to-day life and complex tasks of the MAIDEN Killer Krew and the other characters behind the scenes. The expertise and experience, the problem-solving and successes, the sheer scale and immense difficulties of the undertaking comes to life through the day-to-day coverage of the tour and the background work of the crews in sound, lighting, carpentry, production and set design. As well as interviews with the IRON MAIDEN crew, it interweaves anecdotes from the band and their fans, and includes footage of the live show in this comprehensive guide to the intricacies of staging massive, live stadium shows around the world out of the belly of a Boeing 757. The bonus disc also contains an extended version of the promo video "Satellite 15…The Final Frontier", a video about the making of "Satellite 15…The Final Frontier" plus the opening video sequence to "The Final Frontier World Tour".

MAIDEN's "Final Frontier World Tour 2010-11" saw the band circumnavigating the planet for the third time in their customized Boeing 757, Ed Force One, piloted by lead singer Bruce Dickinson, and playing 98 shows in 36 countries to over 2 million fans.

DVD Disc One - "Live At Estadio Nacional, Santiago" (approximate running time: 120 minutes)

01. Satellite 15
02. The Final Frontier
03. El Dorado
04. 2 Minutes To Midnight
05. The Talisman
06. Coming Home
07. Dance Of Death
08. The Trooper
09. The Wicker Man
10. Blood Brothers
11. When The Wild Wind Blows
12. The Evil That Men Do
13. Fear Of The Dark
14. Iron Maiden
15. The Number Of The Beast
16. Hallowed Be Thy Name
17. Running Free

Bonus Disc - DVD Disc Two "Behind The Beast" (approximate running time: 102 minutes)

01. "Behind The Beast" documentary
02. "Satellite 15…The Final Frontier" promo video (director's cut)
03. "The Making of Satellite 15…The Final Frontier" promo
04. "The Final Frontier World Tour" Show Intro
Legendary rocker Alice Cooper will make a presentation to the Governing Board of the Paradise Valley Unified School District and donation of instruments to Arrowhead Elementary School.

Cooper, Tricia Steel (Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation), Supt. James P. Lee, Arrowhead Elementary School principal and music teachers will be on hand for the event, which will take place on Thursday, April 5 from 7 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Paradise Valley Unified School District Administrative Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

Mr. Holland's Opus Foundation donates new and refurbished musical instruments to underserved schools nationwide, in an effort to give youngsters the many benefits of music education, help them to be better students and inspire creativity and expression through playing music. Since 1996, instruments have been donated to 1,260 music programs across the country benefiting thousands of students. More information can be found at MHopus.org.
According to Rolling Stone, GREEN DAY will deliver GUNS N' ROSES' induction speech when the legendary California rockers are inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame on April 14 in Cleveland, Ohio.

"Use Your Illusion"-era GUNS N' ROSES drummer Matt Sorum has told VH1 Radio Network's Dave Basner that founding guitarist Izzy Stradlin will not be attending the ceremony. Sorum said, "[Slash] spoke to Izzy and Izzy wasn't planning on coming. So I think that was like, if Izzy's not going to come and it's not all the original guys, then it doesn't make sense."

Slash, who recently confirmed that the original band would not be playing, told Rolling Stone on Monday (April 2) that he's "dead sick" of talking about the induction, adding, "I feel you're totally obligated to be present and I would love to play, but it's just something that's not gonna happen for whatever reason."

It's been widely documented that singer Axl Rose's hostility toward Slash is the major stumbling block for any reunion, with Slash saying, "He hates my guts. It's over a lot of different stuff; I don't even know. There's just no communication between us. I talk to Duff [McKagan, bassist] and Steven [Adler, drummer], but when it comes to old GUNS N' ROSES, there really isn't anybody that makes decisions."

Slash will release his second solo album, "Apocalyptic Love", on May 22, with a North American tour booked.

Also going into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame on April 14 are the BEASTIE BOYS, the RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS, the FACES/SMALL FACES, Donovan and Laura Nyro.

The ceremony will be taped for broadcast by HBO, which plans to air it in early May.
On Saturday, April 7, legendary guitarist Slash (VELVET REVOLVER, GUNS N' ROSES) will shoot a "dark" video for the song "You're A Lie" with director Anthony Leonardi III. Leonardi is also helming the first feature film produced by Slash, called "Nothing To Fear", which was recently picked up for distribution by Anchor Bay Entertainment. The movie is the first of a proposed series of horror films produced by Slash's company, called Slasher Films, which he launched last year in partnership with two other producers. The film began shooting last month in Louisiana, with Anne Heche and others confirmed for the cast.

"You're A Lie", which can be streamed in its entirety at RollingStone.com, comes off Slash's second solo album, "Apocalyptic Love", due on May 22 via his own label Dik Hayd International distributed through EMI.

"'You're A Lie' is the second song I brought to the band in 2011 during the last tour," explains Slash. "We worked on it at soundcheck somewhere, I can't remember where. It's gone through some minor changes along the way, mainly the chorus. But for the most part, it's remained true to its original arrangement. I can't wait to play this live."

"Apocalyptic Love" will follow Slash's 2010 debut album, "Slash", and his November 2011 first-ever live solo album, the two-CD/DVD set "Made In Stoke 24/7/11". Notably, the "Slash" album debuted on The Billboard 200 chart at #3 (#1 on the Rock chart, #1 on the Independent chart, and #1 on the Hard Music chart). Digitally, the album also became the #1 overall digital album and hit #1 on iTunes in 13 countries. Internationally, the disc achieved Top 5 chart positions in over a dozen major territories, hitting #1 in both Japan and New Zealand.

In the U.K., "Apocalyptic Love" will be released on May 21 in exclusive Classic Rock Fan Pack form — providing a unique collectable package containing the studio album with bonus tracks alongside a specially created magazine with unseen behind-the-scenes content put together by Classic Rock. The Fan Pack format will also come with free gifts, including a pin badge and artwork poster and will be available to buy via more than 2000 retail outlets on newsstands nationally as well as the traditional high street and online music retailers. Roadrunner Records will simultaneously release the record digitally. The standard physical release of the Slash album will follow through Roadrunner Records on June 18.

For the new album, Slash — along with and his bandmates Myles Kennedy (vocals), Brent Fitz (drums) and Todd Kerns (bass) — teamed with producer Eric Valentine, who also produced the "Slash" disc. All the songs were written together by Slash and Kennedy, and cameras have been rolling throughout the entire making of the album.

"Apocalyptic Love" track listing:

01. Apocalyptic Love
02. One Last Thrill
03. Standing In The Sun
04. You're A Lie
05. No More Heroes
06. Halo
07. We Will Roam
08. Anastasia
09. Not For Me
10. Bad Rain
11. Hard & Fast
12. Far And Away
13. Shots Fired
Award-winning producer/songwriter/guitarist John Shanks recently spoke to GuitarWorld.com about his latest accomplishment: producing VAN HALEN's "A Different Kind Of Truth" album.

When asked how he got involved with the project, Shanks said, "I was working in my room, Studio C, and David Lee Roth was across the hall working on solo stuff. He stays in the studio. He's always in there doing something. It's like a boxer — he's always training. He's always writing and trying stuff and experimenting. He's always creating. It's just staying ready. So he comes in the studio and he's working on a project. I don't know what it was specifically. I introduced myself one day and we chatted a bit and became social. He's very bright and communicative, and we would talk about his dogs, photography, songs, and the current state of pop music.

"I'd met Eddie [Van Halen] a couple of times [through a mutual colleague]. I got a call, I'm sure through Dave talking to Eddie, because I think collectively they come up with, 'Let's try this guy,' or 'Let's have a conversation with John.' I know they talked to a couple of other people, too. Anyway, Eddie called. I went up to the house and met with Alex [Van Halen], Dave, Eddie and Wolf [Van Halen], and they talked about scheduling and what they wanted to do. Somehow we worked it out so we recorded at Henson.

"Dave felt comfortable at Henson. I certainly knew the room, I think Eddie wanted to try it, and collectively, that's what we ended up doing. That's how it started. Eddie wanted to mix it at his house and work on it there [with engineer Ross Hogarth]. I'm sure they worked on it up there a bit more, but they have their process and you respect their process and doing whatever they need to do to get it there."
According to Classic Rock, the March 3 death of legendary guitarist Ronnie Montrose is still under investigation by the authorities in Brisbane, California. While it was widely assumed that Montrose had succumbed to colon cancer, the 64-year-old musician, who played with such artists as Sammy Hagar, Van Morrison and Edgar Winter, said several months ago that the disease was in remission, and unlikely to return.

Responding to queries by Classic Rock, Jeannette Maldonado of the Brisbane police acknowledged that the case was not closed but would not reveal any further details. "This case is still under investigation, pending the coroner's report, and is not available for release," she said.

After Montrose's death, a posting on his official web site simply stated that "true to form, he chose his own exit the way he chose his own life."

A straightforward coroner's autopsy, when cause of death is known or strongly suspected, can take between two and six hours to complete.

In a September 2011 interview with North County Times, Montrose revealed that he didn't pick up his guitar for two years following his cancer diagnosis. "I had prostate cancer that, for me, was debilitating," he said. "I didn't touch a guitar for two years, but when I realized I was seeing the light at the end of the recovery tunnel and was going to live pain-free, I realized again that it was a fun little instrument to play."

He added, "I've blocked all my health issues out of my mind. That's a portion of my life that I'm done with. Now, I can't wait for every day to come so I can wake up and plug in. I'm up there entertaining myself and my playing is stronger than ever, because my excitement is back."

Ronnie Montrose always followed his heart. Ever anxious to take his music to the next level, in 1979 he founded the trailblazing band GAMMA, a group whose trio of ahead-of-their-time albums were an explosion of guitar and synthesizer pyrotechnics anchored by a bluesy edge.

Between and beyond these band forays, Montrose the player devoted himself to exploring instrumental guitar music on landmark albums like "Open Fire" and "The Speed Of Sound". Fans periodically clamored for another taste of the original MONTROSE power trio format, but he wouldn't revisit MONTROSE — that huge, heavy sound; those rich, pealing riffs — until the time came when he could do it with total conviction.
Atlanta progressive metallers MASTODON will take part in an in-store signing on Saturday, April 14 at 1:00 p.m. at Green Light Music in Kalamazoo, Michigan. MASTODON will play the Intersection, in Grand Rapids, Michigan later that night with OPETH and GHOST.

For more information, go to this location.

Professionally filmed video footage of MASTODON performing the song "Dry Bone Valley" on February 11 at the O2 Academy in Brixton, England (suburban London) can be seen below.

MASTODON will hit the road for a spring North American tour in support of their current album "The Hunter", which was released by Reprise Records in September. The tour kicks off on April 4 in Portland, Maine, and visits more than 30 cities in the U.S. and Canada before wrapping up with a hometown show at Atlanta's Masquerade Music Park on May 12. These shows will feature an amazing night of powerful music featuring a dream bill with Swedish metal band OPETH as co-headliners, with special guest GHOST providing support on all dates. Collectively MASTODON has stated: "We're excited to co-headline this tour with OPETH for whom we have great respect and admiration. Having GHOST along as well will make this tour a special event."

MASTODON was among the nominees for the 54th annual Grammy Awards, which was held on February 12 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. The band's Grammy nomination was for "Curl Of The Burl", the first single from MASTODON's new album, "The Hunter".

MASTODON received its first Grammy nomination in 2006 for the single "Colony Of Birchmen", from the band's Reprise Records debut album, "Blood Mountain".
Due to family obligations and work commitments, drummer Sebastian "Seb" Sippola has left Swedish heavy rockers GRAND MAGUS. The new man behind the kit is Ludwig "Ludde" Witt (SPIRITUAL BEGGARS, FIREBIRD, SHINING).

Commented Sebastian: "It took a load off my mind that Ludwig was chosen because he is a friend of mine. By the way, honestly and objective: In my opinion Ludwig is the best replacement for me because he already knows J.B. [guitarist/vocalist Janne Christoffersson] and Fox [Skinner, bass] and he exactly knows which demands the drumming at GRAND MAGUS will make on him. They will be a great team and I'm really looking forward to see them live — though I have no idea, how my reaction will be in this situation."

Added J.B.: "When Sebastian told us that he wanted to concentrate on his family and thus leave the band, it was a tough blow. How to move forward? I knew only one possible drummer who had the combination of old school rock drumming and metal chops like Sebastian and that's Ludwig Witt who I knew through my tenure in SPIRITUAL BEGGARS. Me and Ludwig have stayed in touch after I left BEGGARS and I knew he was busy with other bands, so I couldn't really hope that he would be available. But like it was destined to happen, Ludwig agreed to do the album and join the band. It's weird, because just like it felt completely natural when Sebastian joined, it feels like Ludwig totally belongs in MAGUS! Ludwig is an awesome drummer and we are super-excited to have him on board. We'll pound out the metal together starting end of May. Prepare for the HUNT!"

Stated Ludwig: "I'm very happy to announce that I, Ludwig Witt, am the new drummer of GRAND MAGUS. I've known J.B. for over ten years and I've been a fan of GRAND MAGUS since day one so it's great to be on board. At the moment I'm learning all the classic GRAND MAGUS songs and I get a huge buzz from playing along to songs like 'Kingslayer' and 'Like The Oar Strikes The Water' so I can't wait to get out and play the stuff live together with the new stuff from our new album the hunt. See you on the road."

GRAND MAGUS will release its new album, "The Hunt", in Europe on May 25 via Nuclear Blast Records. The CD's cover artwork was created by Arik Roper (CATHEDRAL, HIGH ON FIRE, SLEEP), who also handled the art on GRAND MAGUS' "Iron Will" LP.

Commented GRAND MAGUS frontman Janne "J.B." Christoffersson: "Arik Roper is a super-talented artist and we've had the pleasure of working with him before when he did the cover art for our album 'Iron Will'. This time around with the overall feel and lyrical themes of our new album 'The Hunt', Arik was the perfect choice once again. We basicallly just gave him the title and he created one of the most haunting and suggestive images ever seen. He totally nailed what the album is all about. To say we are pleased is a gigantic understatement! This piece of art will stand the test of time and become classic."

GRAND MAGUS's last album, "Hammer Of The North", was released digitally in North America in January 2011 via Roadrunner Records. The CD was recorded at 301 studios outside of Stockholm and features artwork by Necrolord.

During the band's 10-year history, GRAND MAGUS released two demos, one split EP and five full-length albums, and has received overwhelmingly positive reviews throughout. Their fourth opus, "Iron Will", was voted "Album of The Month" in the German Metal Hammer and Rock Hard magazines.

Drawing hefty influences from the hand-on-heart grandeur of the NWOBHM and the inspirational mythology of their forbears, GRAND MAGUS is steeped in pre-Christian tales of triumph, vengeance, betrayal, wisdom and death. But GRAND MAGUS also stands for energetic live performances, as seen at European festivals such as Sweden Rock, Hellfest, Wacken, Summer Breeze and on tour in Europe with bands like AT THE GATES, CATHEDRAL, CANDLEMASS, TYRANT, SERPENTCULT and ELECTRIC WIZARD.
RatPack Records has set a May 1 release date for legendary guitarist George Lynch's (DOKKEN, LYNCH MOB, T&N, SOULS OF WE) new EP. "Legacy". This four-song release celebrates thirty years of Lynch's guitar playing by "inject[ing] us with a super-charged dose of George's signature style and prov[ing] once again why he's one of the most respected guitar players of the last three decades," according to a press release. The opening track, "Blood Drive", ignites this disc with an upbeat catchy feel that is reminiscent of early VAN HALEN and Joe Satriani. "Circulo Del Fuego" is a well-constructed rocker that incorporates all of George's legendary playing style. "Invoid" can best be best described as "Mr Scary" meets "Tooth And Nail", seeing as it's laced from start to finish with amazing guitar technique and killer tone. The closing cut, "The Road Ahead", is a haunting ballad-style number that combines all the flavor and melodic angst of the late '80s but with a modern tone.

"Legacy" is a straight-forward offering with a classic metal vibe and is a must-have for any true fan of this elite guitar legend.
Atlantic recording group HALESTORM recently gave U.K.'s Metal Hammer magazine a track-by-track breakdown of the band's new album, "The Strange Case Of…". Check out the footage below.

Produced by Howard Benson (who previously collaborated with the Pennsylvania-based hard rock band on their self-titled 2009 debut), "The Strange Case Of…" was recently named among Revolver's "Most Anticipated Albums of the Year." "Led by one of our favorite rocker babes, singer-guitarist Lzzy Hale, (HALESTORM) promise a more personal album for their follow-up," the magazine noted. "But don't expect them to get all sappy on us. There should still be more than enough of the band's now signature raucous attitude and righteous riffs for any headbanger to get off."

HALESTORM will hit the road hard to support "The Strange Case Of…", beginning with a major U.S. trek alongside GODSMACK and fellow Atlantic recording group STAIND. The dates get underway April 13 at Augusta, Georgia's John Paul Jones Arena and then continue through mid-May.

Formed by frontwoman Lzzy Hale and her brother, drummer Arejay Hale, HALESTORM has been hailed far and wide as an incendiary new force in modern hard rock. "Halestorm" made a top 5 debut on SoundScan's "Hard Music" chart upon its 2009 release, simultaneously bursting into the top 40 on the comprehensive The Billboard 200. The album subsequently sold more than 300,000 copies, and half a million cumulative tracks. Produced by Howard Benson (DAUGHTRY, MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE, FLYLEAF), the album earned extensive acclaim for its infectious hard rock anthems, sexy hooks, and rough-and-tumble grooves.

Due on April 10, "The Strange Case Of…" marks HALESTORM's first release since last year's "ReAniMate: The CoVeRs eP", which saw the band putting their unique stamp on a diverse collection of classic songs, including tracks by GUNS N' ROSES, THE BEATLES, HEART, TEMPLE OF THE DOG, SKID ROW, and LADY GAGA. HALESTORM also unleashed their first-ever live CD/DVD, "Live In Philly 2010", featuring such favorites from the band's self-titled debut as "It's Not You", "Familiar Taste of Poison" and the rock radio smash "I Get Off".

True road warriors, HALESTORM made its bones as a major league hard rock outfit via countless North American gigs alongside such artists as SHINEDOWN, AVENGED SEVENFOLD and DISTURBED. Last year saw the band traveling the country on the blockbuster "Avalanche Tour 2011", joining such hard rock luminaries as STONE SOUR, THEORY OF A DEADMAN, ART OF DYING, and fellow Atlantic recording group SKILLET.

"The Strange Case Of…" track listing:

01. Love Bites (So Do I)
02. Mz. Hyde
03. I Miss The Misery
04. Freak Like Me
05. Beautiful With You
06. In Your Room
07. Break In
08. Rock Show
09. Daughters Of Darkness
10. You Call Me A Bitch Like It's A Bad Thing
11. American Boys
12. Here's To Us
SHADOW SOCIETY has parted ways with bassist Brian Werner.

Commented the band in a statement, "Brian is busy with his touring job working for DYING FETUS, and has also taken on another project after that tour ends. We are in the last bit of pre-production for our debut release, and drums are already being tracked. Due to these circumstances, the band decided to move forward without him. We wish him well in all his endeavors. That being said, SHADOW SOCIETY is privileged to announce that filling the void for recording duties on bass will be a special guest; none other than the mighty Sean Tibbetts (KAMELOT). Sean is a world-class player whose sound, style, and passion are a perfect musical fit for our eclectic collective. We've all known and worked with Sean in various capacities for years, and we're humbled and honored by his contribution to our craft."

SHADOW SOCIETY is currently recording its debut album for a late 2012 release. Minnesota-based drummer Adam Sagan is entrenched in 14:59 Studios in Minneapolis, Minnesota with engineer Will Maravelas (WE ARE LEGION), while the Florida-based members of the band are set to enter Sound Source Recordings with Kelly Nunn (MAYLENE & THE SONS OF DISASTER) at the helm. Mixing and mastering will be handled at the Audio Refinery under the watchful eye and ear of Eric Koondel (CYNIC, SOILWORK, MALEVOLENT CREATION).


* Rob Thoth (CHRONZON, IMMANIFEST) - Lead Vocals
* Asgrim (YETI, IMMANIFEST) - Guitar/Clean Vocals
* Roberto "Kadath" Celentano (YETI) - Keyboards
* Sean Tibbits (KAMELOT) (Special Guest) - Bass
Christopher Jon of WHITE WIZZARD and FORTY WINTERS will fill in for NIGHTRAGE guitarist Olof Mörck on the band's upcoming Greek headlining tour as well as European dates as the support act for DEMON HUNTER.

Commented NIGHTRAGE: "We are happy to have such a cool guitarist and cool guy on our shows playing with us."

Added Jon: "I'm stoked beyond words to be playing guitar with my close friends in NIGHTRAGE on these upcoming dates. [I] became good friends with the dudes on the Frets Of Fury tour back in October. I've been following the band since its inception back in the early 2000s. I'm honored to be able to contribute to a band that's been home to melodic death metal greats like Tomas Lindberg from AT THE GATES, Gus G. from OZZY OSBOURNE, and Marios Iliopoulos as well."

NIGHTRAGE will film a video for an as-yet-undisclosed song off the band's latest album, "Insidious", on April 28 at the Eightball Club in Thessaloniki, Greece. Directing the clip will be Gabriel Psaltakis, who helmed the latest PSYCHO CHOKE video, "Get Down".

NIGHTRAGE's fifth album, "Insidious", was released last September via Lifeforce Records. The CD featured guest appearances by Gus G. (OZZY OSBOURNE, FIREWIND), Tomas S. Englund (EVERGREY), Apollo Papathanasio (FIREWIND, SPIRITUAL BEGGARS), John K (BIOMECHANICAL) and the band's former frontman Tomas Lindberg (also known for his work with AT THE GATES, THE CROWN and LOCK UP). Lindberg appeared on the band's first two albums — 2003's "Sweet Vengeance" and 2005's "Descent Into Chaos" — before being replaced by Jimmie Strimell, who sang on 2007's "A New Disease Is Born".

The "Insidious" cover art was created by Gustavo Sazes (MORBID ANGEL, ARCH ENEMY, FIREWIND, SONIC SYNDICATE, GOD FORBID) of Abstrata Art.


Antony Hämäläinen - Vocals
Marios Iliopoulos - Guitar
Olof Mörck - Guitar
Anders Hammer - Bass
Johan Nunez – Drums
Denmark-based symphonic metal band EVIL MASQUERADE will release its fifth album, "Pentagram", on May 21 via Dark Minstrel Music. The CD was once again produced by guitarist Henrik Flyman and mixed by Tommy Hansen (JORN, HELLOWEEN) at Jailhouse Studios in Denmark.

The track listing for the CD is as follows:

01. Pentagram
02. A Silhouette
03. Perfect Disgrace
04. The Spirits of the Dead
05. Moonlight Fantasy
06. Unholy Water
07. Pray For Mercy On Our Souls
08. Soul Taker
09. On a Bed of Thorns
10. Strangers Might Fool Ya
11. When the Fire Dies
12. The Golden Ratio

The music on "Pentagram" is described as heavily influenced by such bands as DIO, BLACK SABBATH and RAINBOW.


* Apollo Papathanasio (FIREWIND, SPIRITUAL BEGGARS) - Vocals
* Dennis Buhl - Drums
* Thor Jeppesen - Bass
* Artur Meinild - Keyboards

EVIL MASQUERADE's fourth album, "Fade To Black", was released in January 2009 via Escape Music. The follow-up to 2006's "Third Act" was mixed and mastered by Tommy Hansen and featured a guest appearance by former RAINBOW keyboardist Tony Carey.
Swiss hard rockers GOTTHARD will release their new album, "Firebirth", on June 1 release via Nuclear Blast/Warner Music. The CD was produced at the band's own Yellow House Studios in Lugano, Switzerland, with guitarist/songwriter Leo Leoni and Paul Lani (who has previously worked with GOTTHARD on several of their earlier albums, including "G-Spot" and "Homerun") at the helm.

"Firebirth" marks GOTTHARD's first release with new singer Nic Maeder, who was born in Lausanne, Switzerland, lived in Melbourne, Australia and grew up between Switzerland and "Down Under."

"Firebirth" track listing:

01. Starlight
02. Give Me Real
03. Remember It's Me
04. Fight
05. Yippie Aye Yay
06. Tell Me
07. Shine
08. The Story Is Over
09. Right On
10. S.O.S.
11. Take It All Back
12. I Can
13. Where Are You? (dedicated to Steve Lee)

GOTTHARD vocalist Steve Lee was killed on October 5, 2010 in what has been described as a freak road accident in Nevada.

The "Firebirth" album cover depicts the firebird Phoenix, which symbolically rises "from the ashes to the sky" — this line expresses what each GOTTHARD fan feels and underlines the turbulent time that GOTTHARD has gone through in the past months.

Commented Leoni: "We are delighted with the new album. Songwriting with Nic and Freddy was a real explosion of inspiration and new ideas! Regarding sound and production, we have returned to our roots and we deliberately produced it with a pure — and for GOTTHARD — typical sound. For us, 'Firebirth' is the comeback album with the rating: back to basics!"

Added Marc Lynn: "Collaboration with Nic was unbelievable — it feels that we have known each other forever and the euphoria in the band is now burning like a new fire. It is a true rebirth of the zest of 20 years ago, when the band took off 'to conquer the world.' Producing this album with the new lineup was a real 'birth of fire' — we are very proud of our new baby."

GOTTHARD's first recording with Maeder, a song called "Remember It's Me", was made available late last year as a free download via the GOTTHARD web site and was met with a firestorm of enthusiasm and positive feedback.

Stated Maeder: "It was absolutely amazing to experience the positive feedback from the GOTTHARD fans and the media after the release of 'Remember It's Me'. Now I am looking forward to the reaction to our first album together. The chemistry in the band feels fantastic and we are very much looking forward to being onstage in a couple of weeks and rocking with the fans."

GOTTHARD's first live shows with Maeder will take place in May in South America before the band makes several European festival appearances. The new group's German live debut will take place on July 14 at the Bang Your Head!!! festival in Balingen.
FALCON's Perry Grayson and CRESCENT SHIELD's Dan DeLucie were the blazing dual lead-guitar team of true metal band DESTINY'S END in the late '90s. Before DESTINY'S END, Perry and Dan collaborated on the metal newsletter Netherwords. Now they've joined forces to bring you the new web site Worlds Of Weird.

Join Perry (alias the Black Bird) and Dan (alias Dr. Monstrosity) as they take you on a sometimes geeky but always fascinating journey through the weird and wild worlds of horror, fantasy, crime/mystery and science fiction in all their various forms. From pulp magazines to books, comics, film, TV and beyond!
Irish thrashers GAMA BOMB have parted ways with rhythm guitarist and founding member Luke Graham.

Says Graham: "After 10 years with GAMA BOMB, I've decided to call it a day. Many thanks to my best mates in the band for all the good times and mad shit we got up to round the world. Who would've thought 'Project I love Nuclear Assault' would have taken us so far?

"Raised pints and positive gestures to all the great folk I've gotten to work with, the good friends I've made and of course I have to thank the fans for making it all possible, mad bastards every last one. Up the hoods."

With Graham's departure, John Roche of Irish hardcore outfit SLAVE ZERO will be taking up rhythm guitar duties as GAMA BOMB's newest member. Roche worked with the band as a touring guitarist last year when Domo Dixon sustained a ligament injury.

Says GAMA BOMB singer Philly Byrne: "Luke's departure has been one of the toughest things ever to happen to us as a band, but we're all proud of what we've achieved in the last 10 years, will always be best friends and have Luke's support and that's what matters. We're really lucky to be starting a new chapter with John, who's an amazing dude and a massive talent. John's pitching in on tracks for our new album right now and it feels like a natural fit. The best is still to come."

GAMA BOMB, which celebrates its tenth anniversary this summer, is currently working on its fourth LP for a 2012 release.

GAMA BOMB decided to break the mold in 2009 when it released its new album, "Tales From The Grave In Space", online as a free download. Following many requests from fans for a physical release, "Tales From The Grave In Space" was made available on CD and vinyl in January 2010.

"Tales From The Grave In Space" was released on limited-edition vinyl in black (only 700 made) and ultra-limited edition green (only 300 made), as well as on CD. The limited edition CD version of the album also comes with an exclusive bonus EP, titled "Half Cut", which includes five new, extra tracks.
WEST OF HELL, the Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada-based band featuring ZIMMERS HOLE frontman Chris "The Heathen" Valagao, will release its full-length debut, "Spiral Empire", on May 8 via Reversed Records. The CD was recorded at The Factory Studios in Vancouver and was produced by Juno Award-winning engineer Rob Shallcross (STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, GWAR, ZIMMERS HOLE, FEAR FACTORY).

According to a press release, "Spiral Empire" features "a unique sound that preserves the band's legendary, distinctive influences whilst incorporating modern elements, creating a one-of-a-kind listening experience."

WEST OF HELL was formed in 2002 in West Auckland, New Zealand by guitarist Ivan Vrdoljak and drummer Andrew Hulme. A short time later, friends of the pair finally directed them to guitarist Sean Parkinson (ex-SINATE). Parkinson established an instant chemistry with Vrdoljak and Hulme, driving the trio to immediately begin working, writing songs, and forging their trademark sound. Then, after two years of painstaking searches and monitoring the grapevine, the band was led to bassist Jordan Kemp.

With the instrumental portion of the band locked down, all that was left to be discovered was the perfect frontman. Having searched without success for perfect vocalist locally, the band decided to continue the hunt in Vancouver, B.C., Canada, and uprooted to the area in 2009. In order to share their vision and establish WEST OF HELL in a larger scene, they needed a singer that was more than just a screamer, which drastically narrowed the possibilities. The band played a series of shows as a four-piece instrumental, drawing critical acclaim, and ultimately attracted the attention of the local metal community. The exposure led them to Valagao. It was apparent to the founding members that Valagao's diverse skills were exactly what WEST OF HELL needed to realize the band's ultimate vision.


Vocals - Chris "The Heathen" Valagao
Bass - Jordan Kemp
Guitar - Sean Parkinson
Guitar - Ivan Vrdoljak
Drums - Andrew Hulme
British extreme metallers CRADLE OF FILTH will enter the studio at the end of April to begin recording their tenth album for a fall release. The band's vocalist, Dani "Filth" Davey, states, "Thus far we have recorded nine demos (with a final two to follow swiftly on their heels in the coming weeks) which all sound fabulously twisted, though it is hard to put into words just exactly how this album is sounding that would not add confusion to general expectations. I would personally liken it to a hubbub of CRADLE through the years but with a fresh energetic streak racing prominently throughout… it's fast, innovative, melodic, brutal and utterly uncompromising, VERY cinematic (there is a noticeable rise of the orchestral thanks to Martin [Skaroupka, drums] who has been working alongside Paul's [Allender, guitar] feverous songwriting both on these and the drum tracks, which are astonishing to say the least…), romantic, necromantic, angry and reflective. Fuck me, it's a new CRADLE OF FILTH album, and a really bloody good one at that, if the demos alone are taken as a foretaste of the thunderstorm to come."

He continued, "The album itself is not a concept album this time around (you think you're sighing with relief!), but a bestiary of songs all revolving around a chimerical theme. Titles thus far include the following… 'Siding With The Titans', 'The Abhorrent', 'Illicitus', 'Frost On Her Pillow', 'For Your Vulgar Delectation', 'Death, The Great Adventure', 'Manticore', 'The Unveiling Of O', 'Pallid Reflection' and 'Huge Onyx Wings Behind Despair', with a due date of All Hallow's Eve for release and the swiftly approaching date of April 25th for entry into the two studios we're locked in to complete this mammoth task."

"Midnight In The Labyrinth", an orchestral album which reinvents tracks from CRADLE OF FILTH's first four albums and includes choirs, strings and some narration, will be released on Record Store Day (April 21) in participating countries and as a strictly limited-edition two-disc set of delectable magic in the rest of the world.

Commented Davey: "April 21st is the day that our much-anticipated 'Midnight In The Labyrinth' orchestral album is to be released, on what is to be known as Record Store Day (which is slightly ironic I know, seeing as no-one buys records these days, let alone ventures, God forbid, into a real life music store!) and it is sure not to disappoint. Unless of course you're NOT expecting a colossal slab of orchestral music in the vein of the great horror movie composers set to an appetite-whetting smorgasbord of CRADLE's earlier classics.

"The album itself has turned out really well, with the mix by 'Dusk And Her Embrace''s Kit Woolven bringing a swathe of luxuriousness to the proceedings. Plus we managed to entice Sarah Jezebel Deva back to add her definitive touch to the female narrative and lead vocal parts (partly in exchange for me singing on a track on her new EP and partly in exchange for thirteen pence in old money and half a mouldy Snickers bar).

"Seriously, though, I am very proud of what we have managed to achieve with this release as it exemplifies all that we have come to love from listening to soundtracks by way of incorporating the cream of our earlier works. And as with most of CRADLE's back canon, people are either going to love it or hate it madly. If you're into bombastic pagan war anthems and heartrending melodrama of a nocturnal persuasion, then you're definitely going to love it. If not, well, there's the door back to your sanitary existence Mr. and Mrs. Dullard Moany-Pants…"
Former TURISAS bassist Hannes Horma has joined horror metallers DIRGE ETERNAL as their new guitarist.

DIRGE ETERNAL recently completed work on the "Under The Spell" EP at Sound Supreme Studio in Hämeenlinna, Finland. In addition to playing lead guitar on the CD, Horma served as engineer and producer during the sessions.

Due on May 5, "Under The Spell"'s release will be celebrated with a performance later that night at Escape in Riihimäki, Finland.

DIRGE ETERNAL's second music video, "Slaughterhouse", will be premiered on May 4 at the Biorex movie theater in Hämeenlinnna.


Jani Perta - Vocals
Hannes Horma - Guitar
Henri Asikainen - Guitar
Markus Ylänne - Bass
Patrik Albrecht – Drums
Polish extreme metal veterans BEHEMOTH will make an in-store appearance at Scrape Records in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada on "Record Store Day" — Saturday, April 21 — between 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.

For more information, visit www.scraperecords.com.

The highly anticipated inaugural "Decibel Magazine Tour" kicks off in a mere eight days in Columbus, Ohio. It wasn't too late, however, for the venue owners to prohibit the bands from appearing. BEHEMOTH, WATAIN, THE DEVIL'S BLOOD and IN SOLITUDE were banned from playing at the original venue because of "religious conflicts with the venue owners," according to a press release from Metal Blade Records. "These bands are no strangers to this type of treatment, and a new venue has already been confirmed. The Columbus, Ohio show will now be at the Alrosa Villa.

Commented BEHEMOTH frontman Adam "Nergal" Darski: "Wow, big motherfuckin' WOW! We are facing a legendary moment: America, the land of the free, is banning BEHEMOTH 'cause of religious beliefs. The madness starts in Ohio, but, of course, we are playing anyway. Nothing can stop us now. God, please save me from this freedom…"

Other BEHEMOTH in-store signing sessions during the "Decibel Magazine Tour":

April 18 at 5:00 p.m.
5546 S Redwood Rd.
Salt Lake City, UT 84123

May 4 at 5:00 p.m.
Manifest Discs & Tapes
6239 South Boulevard
Charlotte, NC 28217

May 6 at 5:00 p.m.
100 South Broad St
Philadelphia, PA 19110

In addition to BEHEMOTH, the the inaugural Decibel Magazine Tour will also include performances by WATAIN, THE DEVIL'S BLOOD and IN SOLITUDE.

BEHEMOTH's "Evangelia Heretika - The New Gospel Three" DVD (2010) — a three-disc set featuring two full shows ("Live In Paris 2008" and "Live In Warsaw 2009"); every BEHEMOTH music video ever made; "Evangelion" tour documentary featuring band interviews plus tons of backstage footage; and a bonus "Live in Warsaw" audio CD — was certified platinum in the Poland for sales in excess of 10,000 copies.

BEHEMOTH recently released a video for the song "Lucifer", off "Evangelion". The Grupa 13-directed clip features Polish singer, guitarist, and poet Maciej Malenczuk, who also contributed guest vocals to the track.
Anthony Morgan of Metal Forces recently conducted an interview with drummer Paul Mazurkiewicz of Florida death metallers CANNIBAL CORPSE. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

On the songwriting style of each member:

Paul: "Pat [O'Brien, lead guitar] has his own style… It's a little tougher maybe on the new album, because of songs like 'As Deep As The Knife Will Go' and 'Followed Home Then Killed'. Some of the parts don't sound like Pat, but with the main riffing on 'Followed Home Then Killed', you realize that it was written by him. Three of them have a distinct style of writing, and that's great. You have to have that distinction in the style of writing that separates it where one guy isn't sounding like the other guy, but to me it's apparent. I've been around them long enough and I know how they play, but I would think that the CANNIBAL CORPSE fans would figure those things out too for the most part. Maybe it's not always apparent, but for the most part you can hear who's writing what.

"Pat is very note-y, of course, with very crazy, fast guitar parts. Songs like 'Frantic Disembowelment', 'Dead Human Collection', 'Make Them Suffer' and 'To Decompose', I think it's apparent those are Pat's in the way the riffing works. Alex [Webster, bass] writes note-y stuff as well, but it just seems like it's not as crazy in the playing department and the timings might be a lot more different. Alex really likes to delve into that, where the time signatures are changing or are different than on the last song and doing a lot of mathematics. A song like 'Intestinal Crank' or 'Unnatural' or 'Rabid', those songs I think are Alex's just in the way the riffs are put together. To me, Rob [Barrett, rhythm guitar] just always had more of a thrashy feel to his songs to where his riffs go, a little bit of a more old-school feel."

On "Torture" having the "frenzied attack" of "Butchered At Birth" (1991) or "Tomb Of The Mutilated" (1992):

Paul: "It's just the primal aggression, I think, from the beginning of the band. Songs like 'Demented Aggression', 'Encased In Concrete', 'Rabid', and 'Intestinal Crank' in the speed that we're hitting and the brutality reminds me a lot more of what we did in the old days of CANNIBAL. We seemed to stray away from certain things that we've done a lot. Not always, but it was mostly really the key. A lot of the beats we were doing, they got a little more controlled in the latter years. We really made an effort to pump it up a little bit, and tried to have that fury that we had back in the old days. Songs like that remind me of the old days."

On "Torture"'s similarities with more recent CANNIBAL CORPSE material:

Paul: "Even though it's got the primal aggression, the timings and so on in 'Intestinal Crank' remind me more of our newer songs. Even though it has a simplistic riff and all that, 'Scourge Of Iron' is very basic and driving. A lot of that with the whole middle part where there's a lot more thought going into the song at that point, that reminds me of the newer CANNIBAL style. Maybe a song like 'The Strangulation Chair' is something a little different than we normally do, and maybe sounds a little bit more like the newer style of CANNIBAL with a lot of craziness happening and the bass guitar from Alex. Those songs in particular I think are the newer style of songs that we have on 'Torture'."

On whether CANNIBAL CORPSE will exist for another 10-20 years:

Paul: "It's hard to say. We're older now, of course — we've been around for 20-plus years. We're all in our mid-to-low 40s, and we still feel healthy. It would be great to go that long, to go another 20 years. Are we able to? Are we physically able to? That's gonna be the question. You gotta take it all day by day at this point. We all feel good and we all feel like we're on top of our game, better than we ever have. We write better than we ever have. Only time will tell; if we're mentally okay and we feel we're still able to put out quality music and physically we can hold up, there's no reason why we can't go another ten to 20 years. Really, it's just hard to predict that, though, because being the age we are now it's really hard to predict what's gonna happen tomorrow. We'll see what happens."

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