[Classic_Rock_Forever] The Rolling Stones, Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper, Metallica, Rush, Rob ZOmbie, Monster Energy Aftershock Festival, Queensryche, Anthrax, Shinedown, Stratovarious, Threshold, and tons more hard rock and heavy metal news


Omega - the official time-keeper of the Olympics - scored the Rolling Stones classic "Start Me Up" to soundtrack their spot in the lead-up to the summer games in London, USA Today reports. The commercial features several Olympic athletes like sprinter Tyson and swimmer Natalie Coughlin prepping in the moments before the starting gun sounds. "Start Me Up" was used by Ford in an auto ad in 2003, as well as Microsoft launching Windows 95. For details and the video see the RollingStone.com article Rolling Stones Help Launch Omega Olympic Campaign with 'Start Me Up'.
Sharon Osbourne broke down on on her show "The Talk" on Monday as she discussed son Jack's battle with multiple sclerosis. She also announced that her 26-year-old son — whose father is BLACK SABBATH singer Ozzy Osbourne — would make an appearance on the program on Wednesday to talk about his condition. Jack will also be a guest on "Piers Morgan Tonight" at 9 p.m. Thursday on CNN.

"Sharon, you have always been an open book with your life, with your family's life, and right now there's something going on with Jack," said co-host Julie Chen as she opened the show.

"Jack will be here on Wednesday to talk about his diagnosis, but he's great," Sharon said. "He's doing really, really good, and I want to thank everyone for all their texts and goodwill and love they've sent to us.

"Thank you to everyone for all their good wishes, it's been amazing for Jack," she continued.

"I really believe that vibes and prayer help, good energy ... What I'm doing right now is not helping because I'm just feeling sorry for myself, and that is no good. So we have to think positively and get on with this show that we love!"

Jack Osbourne revealed in an interview with Hello! magazine that he was diagnosed with the incurable neurological disease — which attacks the brain and spinal cord — two weeks after he and fiancée Lisa Stelly welcomed their daughter, Pearl Clementine.

"I was just angry and frustrated and kept thinking, 'Why now?'" he told Hello! "I've got a family and that's what's supposed to be the most important thing."

"The timing was so bad," he said. "I'd just had a baby, work was going great ... I kept thinking: 'Why now?'

"While I was waiting for the final results, I got really, really angry. Then I got really sad for about two days, and after that I realized: 'Being angry and upset is not going to do anything at this point — if anything it's only going to make it worse,'" he told Hello! "'Adapt and overcome' is my new motto."

"I keep thinking, 'What did I do wrong? What did I eat or drink when I was pregnant?'" Sharon told Hello! "I feel like it's somehow my fault."

Ozzy said: "If it was me, you'd think: 'Ozzy had a reputation and it caught up with him', but Jack is such a good guy."
According to The Pulse Of Radio, Ozzy Osbourne wants his son Jack to get a second opinion following Jack being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis — because Ozzy himself was once thought to have the disease by doctors, which turned out to be wrong. Jack recently consulted medical personnel after experiencing blurred eyesight and headaches, and was informed he has MS just two weeks after he and his fiancee welcomed their daughter Pearl.

But Ozzy told England's Hello! magazine, "I want Jack to go for a second opinion as I was misdiagnosed with MS a few years ago — it took them six months to work out that I have a rare hereditary tremor, called Parkin Syndrome."

Jack revealed that there is some family history with MS, saying, "Mum took it really quite hard; my uncle on her side has MS and, the way my mum is, she thinks that somehow it's her fault. Both my parents were handling it way worse than I was; they were pretty shaken up about the whole thing."

Jack's mother, Sharon, told Hello!, "I keep thinking, 'What did I do wrong? What did I eat or drink when I was pregnant? I feel like it's somehow my fault."

Ozzy added, "If it was me, you'd think: 'Ozzy had a reputation and it caught up with him.' But Jack is such a good guy."

MS affects the central nervous system and can cause problems with muscle control and strength, vision, balance, feeling, and thinking. The disease affects people differently in each case, with some people having only minor problems, while others become seriously disabled.
According to TMZ.com, tonight's (Wednesday, June 20) OZZY OSBOURNE & FRIENDS concert at the SAP Arena in Mannheim, Germany was canceled at the last minute over "vocal concerns."

After support band BLACK LABEL SOCIETY finished its set, an Ozzy representative came on and announced that Osbourne would be unable to perform due to "issues with his voice."

The original lineup of BLACK SABBATH — who late last year confirmed the recording of their first new album in more than 33 years and a worldwide headlining tour — had to put some plans on hold due to guitarist Tony Iommi's battle with lymphoma. As a result, BLACK SABBATH performed only one show of this summer's previously scheduled European tour. It took place Sunday, June 10 at the U.K.'s Download festival.

So as not to let the promoters and fans down, SABBATH singer Ozzy Osbourne is now performing the majority of the previously scheduled BLACK SABBATH European dates (both festival performances and the headlining shows) billed as OZZY OSBOURNE & FRIENDS. These "first-ever" OZZY OSBOURNE & FRIENDS shows are featuring appearances by "special guest" musicians, including Butler (who is joining Ozzy for a special BLACK SABBATH set as a show of respect and support to their friend, Tony Iommi) and longtime former Ozzy bandmember Zakk Wylde. In addition, Ozzy is being accompanied by longtime collaborator and friend Slash at select shows, with other "special guests" set to join the tour at various stops along the way.

Interview with Alice Cooper: An American Treasure

—by James Campion, June 20, 2012
Alice Cooper is an American treasure and he knows it. Once the viscous, drunken villain of rock and roll and a threat to the very decency of our moral foundation, Cooper has transformed into the clean and sober fist-pumping defiant champion of our hearts. "I'm lovable," he says with a mischievous chuckle. But then Alice Cooper may not be in the mood to return the favor. Rebuffed by the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame for decades, he was granted entry last year as the pioneer member of what he calls "the lunatic fringe" that will break the seal and let in all the maniacs. He's also quite miffed at what passes for "great rock and roll bands" these days.
Currently sharing a tour with Iron Maiden (one of the "lunatic fringe" long ignored by the elitist rock press), he is riding high after the recent popularity of his sequel to the legendary Welcome To My Nightmare (Welcome 2 My Nightmare), a title which he thinks is "so damn clever," the soon-to-be released on DVD for the first time, The Strange Case Of Alice Cooper and an enormous box set called Old School, which features a healthy sampling of the vicious, drunken villain days.
The Coop took time for our second chat in the last few years after a rigorous round of golf and a yearning to get back on the road by his lonesome later this summer into the fall. Below, he talks about the Rock And Rock Hall Of Fame, boring bands and the upcoming tour.
The first question I must ask, and it has to be framed as any self-respecting Alice Cooper fan would: How important does the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame feel that it now has the great Alice Cooper as one of its own?
What I think it did was open the door to acts that were probably gonna have a hard time. When you get an Alice Cooper in it kind of breaks some new ground in there for bands like KISS or Iron Maiden. Even though we sold 50 million records, I mean, we had all of the qualifications to be in; it's just that Alice Cooper's image was that of the outsider and I think there are a lot of bands that are outsider bands. As commercial as KISS are, they're an outsider band. So I think us getting in opened the door for harder rock bands.
For a '70s kid, I mean, ignoring Alice Cooper? I know you had the theatrics, which unfairly always seems to put you in danger of the novelty label, but what you guys did as a band and your solo work defined rock music for that generation, especially as innovators. It's as if the voters feel the need to ignore the impact of that period and the bands that dominated it.
Far more important for me was the music. It's nice to have all the trappings and we did break a lot of ground when it came to our kind of shows, I mean nobody had ever even used up-lighting or down-lighting before us. We were the first ones to use truss lighting, which is still a big influence on what's going on today. But the fact that the songs and the albums still hold up, I think it finally proves what we said all along: We spent 90 percent of our time on the music and like 10 percent of the time on the theatrics. The theatrics came easy to us. It was the music that we really had to work at and I think we're being cited for the music as much as anything else.
The music triggered a great deal of the theatrics from the beginning. Each of your albums always appeared to have a theme and a different characterization of the Alice that would inform the shows.
To me, I don't know why and I don't know how, but I've always thought of everything in concepts from the very beginning. It always seemed to me that any song is conceptual. For instance, if you come up with a title, any title at all, I don't care what it is, it could be "Welcome To My Nightmare," so write a show around that. "Welcome To My Nightmare?" Okay, what does it consist of? All right, we've got a little kid that can't wake up from his nightmare. Okay, that's good, now what happens to him? So for me, right there, I start writing out the whole idea of the story and then I start filling in the details as songs. So, okay, there'll be "Cold Ethyl." She'll be this fantasy love character and maybe she's dead. I don't know; let's make that part of the nightmare. "Only Women Bleed?" Let's make that part of the nightmare. It was always like that for me. I can't not think in terms of concepts. It's automatic to me. I think every album I've done has been a conceptual album in my head.
There was a great deal of pressure on you when you went solo with the original Welcome To My Nightmare, which was a Herculean undertaking; a multi-media idea from album to concert to film, etc.
Yup. It was a giant roll of the dice. I'm telling you, if it wouldn't have worked—and I always tell bands this, and I just told the graduating students at the Music Institute out in California, "Here's your choices; climb out on the limb and you're either going to be a genius or an idiot." (Laughs) You know, go out as far as you can on that limb and either be a genius or an idiot. If you're an idiot, you fall off the limb and then you climb the tree and do it again. There's nothing that says you can't climb the tree again. But whatever you do, don't stay in the middle. Never stay in that gray, mediocre area. Go out and do something that's gonna startle everybody or that's gonna make everybody think of you when they think of that. So Welcome To My Nightmare was one of those defining moments of "I talk the talk, am I gonna walk the walk?" And Shep Gordon [longtime manager] and I and Bob Ezrin [longtime collaborator and producer] put all of our money into that show and if it would have been a failure we would have had to start all over again.
The brilliant duality of what you just said is that, in that show, you are both the idiot and the genius.
And you know, I always have been. I've always wanted Alice to be this arrogant villain that's also vulnerable. In other words, he may be—and I always liken him to an Alan Rickman type, you know, "cancel Christmas!" that kind of overblown villain. But you just know at some point he's gonna slip on a banana peel (laughs). And at that moment, how does he recover? That's the humor of Alice right there.
Sure, and you had mentioned the last time we spoke of the two Alices; the one when you were drinking heavily, the victim, and the one now that you're clean and sober, the fist-pumping defiant Alice.
When I look at video from back then I see him as a total victim. Even his posture was a total victim's posture and what was he singing about? What was happening? He was the whipping boy. Everybody hated him. And a lot of kids on the outskirts really related to that.
We sure did.
They related by saying, "I'm that guy. I'm the one everybody hates. I'm the one that doesn't fit in," so he was sort of the poster boy for all the misfits. So when I got sober, I said, "I really don't want to be that guy anymore. Now I want to be the guy who's the controlling villain. I want to be Moriarty now, play Alice like that, and I think because of that transformation Alice has gotten a whole new life.
How has Alice Cooper stayed in the public conscience for so long? My four-year-old daughter loves Alice Cooper. He is ingrained in the fabric of our culture. Where do you think Alice fits into our collective subconscious?
I think what it is, Alice was young and dangerous and vicious, and now Alice is more of a Vincent Price. I think Alice is woven into the conscience of America. I'm sort of an American treasure now (laughs). The same way Iggy Pop is, guys like that who survived 45, 50 years in the business and they're still doing it and just keep going. I think we're not as dangerous as we are lovable. And that's a great thing. It's fun for me. I don't feel the pressure of having to outdo myself anymore. I mean, we're clever enough to make the show clever every time, but I'm not trying to outdo Nightmare.
First of all, it's a different world now. When you do two or three theatrical things on stage people are just wowed, because everything is so boring out there right now. It is one of the most boring periods of music I've ever witnessed in rock and roll. I mean, the bands that are being touted as the great bands right now are the most boring bands. They wouldn't have lasted five minutes in the '70s. There's just no testosterone in these bands. It's like these young bands are afraid to be rock and roll guys. They're timid, they're going, (whines) "I…don't…know…"
I talk to Steven Tyler, Iggy, Ted Nugent, all the guys who were the big image guys, and they're all looking around goin', "What happened to rock and roll? When did we get so pabulum?" You know, there are a few; the Foo Fighters are great. The Foo Fighters would have fit right in during the '70s. I mean, they're a '70s band. Jack White challenges everybody. I love that guy. But I look at the charts or the cover of these magazines and the headline is "This is the greatest new band" and I go, "There's an accordion in this band! There's a ukulele in this band!" What's wrong with these people? (Laughs) Honestly!
So as long as they're gonna do that, then bands like Aerosmith, Alice, Ozzy, The Rolling Stones, whoever it is, are going to keep chewing up the landscape. 'Cause I'm not backing down! I'm gonna do the hardest show I can do. I'm gonna do the most edgy show I can do. I give credit to Dee Snider. I give credit to Rob Zombie. Those are guys who finally got their teeth into this thing. If it's gonna be a show, make it a show! Boy, am I disappointed when I look around at some of these new bands. Wow, do we need a shot of adrenaline.
Speaking of which, you're on the road now with Iron Maiden. Will the Alice Cooper fans get their just desserts?
Well, actually the new show won't start 'til October. When we're working with Iron Maiden as the guest stars, we're only doing an hour. We're going to be doing some of the theatrics, but all of it's going to be the biggest hits. This band I've got is great. Ryan Roxie is back. I've got Orianthi, Tommy Henriksen. So I've got three great guitar players right there, and I've got Chuck Garric on bass and Glen [Sobel] on drums and it's gonna be a really tough, good band, and to me that's all I can really do on this show. We'll do some theatrics, you know, we'll have fun with it, of course, but when we go out in October with our own show, basically it's going to be an entirely new show.
All right, we'll have to talk then. You'll have to give me all the details.
Yeah, yeah, and honestly the stuff that's being built right now and the stuff being put together for that is really exciting. We've had meetings with directors and stuff like that and it will be something that will really make people smile, 'cause it's pure Alice.
Alice Cooper will be at Jones Beach on June 27, the Susquehanna Bank Center on June 29 and the Prudential Center on July 2. For more information, go to alicecooper.com.
METALLICA has partnered with Fuse TV to bring you select performances from the band's upcoming two-day festival Orion Music + More — which will take place on June 23-24 at Bader Field in Atlantic City, New Jersey — including both headlining sets from METALLICA. More information is available at Fuse.tv.

An entire stage at Orion Music + More devoted to punk and thrash music — Damage Inc. Stage — will be headlined by SUICIDAL TENDENCIES and SEPULTURA, and will feature up-and-comers TORCHE, RED FANG, KYNG, LANDMINE MARATHON, BLACK TUSK, THY WILL BE DONE, and more.

Orion Music + More will feature multiple live music stages plus a lifestyle element that reflects each of METALLICA's bandmembers' many personal interests. METALLICA will headline both nights of Orion Music + More and play "The Black Album" in its entirety one night and "Ride The Lightning" in its entirety the other. This will be the only time the band will perform these albums in North America in 2012.

Tickets for Orion Music + More are currently on sale for $150 for a two-day pass including all fees. Visit www.orionmusicandmore.com to buy tickets.
METALLICA guitarist Kirk Hammett will release a book titled "Too Much Horror Business - The Kirk Hammett Collection" in October via Abrams Images. Documenting his love of all things horror and the legendary collection of horror memorabilia he has amassed over the years, "Too Much Horror Business" is a stunning 228-page, hardback, large-format coffee-table book featuring well over 300 full-color images from Kirk's private collection and exclusive set photography by Mark Leialoha and Joe Gibbs. There will be three extensive conversations with writer Steffan Chirazi covering the importance of collecting in Hammett's life from childhood, plus written captions by Kirk for many of the items displayed in the book.

"It's a book about vintage tour and movie posters, vintage monster toys and artwork," Kirk told Guitar World recently. "It's basically all the stuff I've managed to amass over the last 30 years or so. I have such a huge collection and I just thought now was the right time to share it with everyone. And that's exactly what I'm doing."

"This is my gift to all the other horror nerds out there who are just like me," said Kirk in a new press statement. "It's been made with great love for all the many characters and movies which guided me through childhood, into adulthood and which still keep me on track today."

On June 23-24, at Orion Music + More, the new annual festival founded by METALLICA and taking place in Atlantic City, New Jersey, fans will see a preview of what's to come in "Too Much Horror Business". Hammett will be hosting Kirk's Crypt and offering fans an extraordinary glimpse into his collection.

"Too Much Horror Business - The Kirk Hammett Collection" can be pre-ordered here.

In addition to "Too Much Horror Business", Hammett will commence producing collectible items through his Kirk Von Hammett line, specifically toys. Each of the collectibles will be a strictly limited edition, with the first one being available on October 1 at www.kvhtoys.com.

"I've spent my life collecting toys, so what could be more fun than making a series of toys which indulge my childhood fantasies AND which people can collect!" said Hammett. "It's more about fulfilling a huge ambition than anything else, and I hope I get the first one!"
This coming weekend (June 23-24), METALLICA's heralded Orion Music + More festival will present ARCTIC MONKEYS, AVENGED SEVENFOLD, MODEST MOUSE, ROKY ERICKSON, and dozens of emerging metal and rock bands, plus a full metal expo, including an hourlong question-and-answer session with "Murder In The Front Row: Shots From The Bay Area Thrash Metal Epicenter" co-author and photographer Brian Lew.

As displayed in heavy archival detail in "Murder In The Front Row", Brian Lew was present and photographed several pivotal moments during METALLICA's formative years, including: the young band's first San Francisco and Bay Area live appearances and afterparties; their first jam session with former bassist Cliff Burton; and the first soundcheck and live show with a legendary but short-lived lineup including Cliff Burton, Lars Ulrich, James Hetfield and Dave Mustaine.

Says Brian Lew: "Being invited by METALLICA to chat about 'Murder In The Front Row' at their Orion fest means a lot to me personally. The original Bay Area metal days were a profoundly important time for my coauthor Harald Oimoen and I, and it's cool that those memories obviously still mean a lot to METALLICA. The fact that my Q&A session is scheduled for the same day that METALLICA will be playing the 'Ride The Lightning' album in its entirety for the first time is mind-blowing!"

Brian Lew's session will take place June 23 at 4 p.m. at Orion fest in the Enter Met Club lounge. Also scheduled to participate in Q&A sessions during the festival are longtime METALLICA audio engineer "Big" Mick Hughes, Metal Blade Records CEO Brian Slagel, and band father Torben Ulrich.

"Murder In The Front Row", by Harald Oimoen and Brian Lew, is a stunning collection over 400 color and black-and-white photos of the birth of thrash metal in San Francisco, capturing historic moments including the earliest shows by SLAYER, METALLICA, and MEGADETH, and events such as the first night SLAYER met the young members of METALLICA. The book also includes passionate personal accounts by Bay Area veterans Harald Oimoen, Brian Lew, Ron Quintana of Metal Mania, Gary Holt of EXODUS, Alex Skolnick of TESTAMENT, and Robb Flynn of VIO-LENCE/MACHINE HEAD. From DIY origins to world domination, the Bay Area thrash metal scene screams to life in these fearless pages.

"Murder In The Front Row: Bay Area Bangers And The Birth Of Thrash Metal" was released in December via Bazillion Points Books, America's smallest but heaviest book publisher.

For more information, visit www.murderinthefrontrow.com.
RUSH's first new collection of original material in over five years and their first studio release via Anthem/Roadrunner Records, "Clockwork Angels", sold 103,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 2 on The Billboard 200 chart.

RUSH's 18th studio album, "Snakes & Arrows", debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard album chart in May 2007 with sales of 93,000 copies. The disc was the first collection of all-new RUSH material since 2002's "Vapor Trails" and the 27th RUSH release to make the Billboard album chart. The band's chart peak was in 1993, when "Counterparts" debuted at No. 2.

The recording of "Clockwork Angels" began in April 2010 with Grammy Award-winning producer Nick Raskulinecz (FOO FIGHTERS, DEFTONES) — who also collaborated with the band on their last studio album, 2007's "Snakes & Arrows".

Lyrically, "Clockwork Angels" chronicles a young man's quest across a lavish and colorful world of steampunk and alchemy as he attempts to follow his dreams. The story features lost cities, pirates, anarchists, an exotic carnival, and a rigid Watchmaker who imposes precision on every aspect of daily life. The novelization of "Clockwork Angels" is being written by science fiction writer Kevin J. Anderson in collaboration with RUSH drummer and lyricist Neil Peart.

"Clockwork Angels" track listing:

01. Caravan
02. BU2B
03. Clockwork Angels
04. The Anarchist
05. Carnies
06. Halo Effect
07. Seven Cities Of Gold
08. The Wreckers
09. Headlong Flight
10. BU2B2
11. Wish Them Well
12. The Garden
The Pulse Of Radio reports that Rob Zombie's next film project as a writer and director will be "Broad Street Bullies", about the famous Philadelphia Flyers hockey team of the 1970s that were famous for beating the Soviet Union's team at the time and notorious for their violent tactics on the ice. According to Deadline, the Flyers played so brutally against the Soviet squad that the latter wanted to quit after one period. Zombie said in a statement about the film, "Each character involved is more outrageous than the next. The backdrop of the turbulent year of 1974 is perfect for this 'stranger than fiction' sports tale."

Zombie reportedly wants the movie to feel like a cross between "Rocky" and "Boogie Nights".

The Flyers, who went from a cellar-dwelling expansion team to winners of back-to-back Stanley Cups, were previously chronicled in an HBO documentary, also called "Broad Street Bullies".

The movie will mark Zombie's first foray outside horror films, with his resume so far consisting of projects like "House Of 1000 Corpses", "Halloween" and the upcoming "The Lords Of Salem".

Zombie told The Pulse Of Radio a while back that it's been tough for him to break out of the horror movie genre. "The movies I've made up to this point have been pretty dark and pretty much in that world because those are the opportunities that were presented," he said. "You know, the people that put up the money for these things know that if I stick to that sort of thing, it's easily more profitable. So it's a much bigger challenge to break out of it."

Zombie's latest film, "The Lords Of Salem", is currently in post-production and expected to be released later this year.

At the moment, Zombie has turned his attention back to music and is in the studio working on the follow-up to his 2010 album, "Hellbilly Deluxe 2".
The first annual Monster Energy Aftershock Festival, presented by California's rock station 98 Rock, is set for Sunday, September 23 at Discovery Park in downtown Sacramento, California. The initial lineup for the full-day rock festival includes STONE TEMPLE PILOTS, DEFTONES, BUSH, CHEVELLE, HOLLYWOOD UNDEAD, THEORY OF A DEADMAN, OLEANDER, ESCAPE THE FATE, OTHERWISE, GEMINI SYNDROME and more.

Tickets go on sale Friday, June 22 at 10:00 a.m. PT at AftershockConcert.com, Ticketmaster.com and at all Ticketmaster outlets. A special 98 "Rock Mob" ticket pre-sale is available from Wednesday, June 20 at 10:00 a.m. PT through Thursday, June 21 at midnight PT.

General-admission tickets for Monster Energy Aftershock Festival are available for as low as $49.50 plus fees and VIP tickets can be purchased for $99.50 plus fees. VIP tickets include: VIP entrance to venue; access to VIP lounge area featuring dedicated bar, beverage and food service; viewing of main stage (seated and standing areas); seated area with shade for dining and private restroom facilities; and a VIP guest laminate.

"When you're bringing a new rock festival to any city, it's important to have a great local radio partner, and a strong feeder system of stations to support the show," says festival creator/producer Danny Wimmer of Arms Division Concerts/DWP/Right Arm Entertainment. "Sacramento has this and more. Its deep foundation in rock — including bands like DEFTONES and OLEANDER, music executives coming out of the area, and vital stations like KDOT, KBRE, and our partner station 98 Rock — proves that rock is a mainstay in Northern California."

Discovery Park is conveniently located in downtown Sacramento, where the American River meets the Sacramento River. Gates for the Monster Energy Aftershock Festival open at 11:00 a.m. and the show starts at noon.
According to Billboard.com, Seattle progressive rockers QUEENSRŸCHE have officially parted ways with vocalist Geoff Tate and have replaced him with CRIMSON GLORY singer Todd La Torre.

"Over the past few months, there have been growing creative differences within QUEENSRŸCHE," drummer Scott Rockenfield said in a statement. "We want our fans to know that we hoped to find a common resolution, but in the end parting ways with Geoff was the best way for everyone to move forward in a positive direction. We wish him the best of luck with all of his future endeavors. We can't wait to bring QUEENSRŸCHE to our fans with Todd behind the microphone."

The statement also said that scheduled QUEENSRŸCHE performances "are on hold at [the] present time and revised routing is being worked on. Fans can check the band's website for all of the latest tour information as it [becomes] available."

On May 29, QUEENSRŸCHE members Michael Wilton, Eddie Jackson, Scott Rockenfield and Parker Lundgren announced that they were forming a project called RISING WEST with La Torre. That band made its live debut at two sold-out shows June 8-9 at Seattle's Hard Rock Café, performing rare and classic hits from the first five QUEENSRŸCHE albums — from the 1983 EP through 1990's "Empire" — as well as a cover version of the IRON MAIDEN staple "Wrathchild".

QUEENSRŸCHE was scheduled to open for the SCORPIONS on June 11 in West Valley City, Utah, but the band canceled its appearance the day of the event, with Tate going ahead with the show, backed by his solo group.

Speaking to the "Streets Of Rock & Roll" radio show, La Torre stated about RISING WEST's live debut, "It was amazing. I've actually been told how critical the people of Seattle can be with their music — they take it pretty seriously, and seeing as it is [QUEENSRŸCHE's] home turf, I expected to be severely ridiculed. To the contrary, I felt widely accepted. The fans were amazing. We sold out the place both nights. Our merch was gone the first night."

On the topic of how it feels to be performing with members of a group which he has called his "favorite band since [he] was probably 14 or 15 years old," La Torre said, "To be able to play those songs with the actual members was really a dream come true. . . I mean, I met them 20 years ago at a signing session they did in Clearwater, Florida. And they signed my 'Warning' album cover; I still have it. In my home studio, I have 'Promised Land' signed and beautifully framed by all the members. So when this actually came to be, I had to pinch myself. . . This resonates very personally for me because I have a lot of emotional connection to this music, and the fans do, too. . . And the band, as a whole, is really excited. I mean, even the bandmembers' wives have told me, 'Todd, these guys haven't been this happy in 10 years.' I'm seeing them glowing. I mean, they're smiling; we're laughing. We laughed so hard at practice, at rehearsal, and it just all feels very comfortable and natural. And I couldn't be more honored. This is a legendary band that's never had another vocalist front those members. And so, out of all the people in the world that could have gotten chosen or would be vying for that position, I feel very lucky and fortunate that they chose me."

When asked about plans to record new original music with his new bandmates, Todd said, "Actually, there is new original material. And that's a goal that they wanna do. . . I think that performing the classic tunes or any QUEENSRŸCHE material that they wrote is a good bridge to them being true to their original works. . . Obviously, we wanna try and write something that's heavy, but also has a common thread of what is QUEENSRŸCHE's sound — very melodic guitar parts." He added, "Vocally, I'm in a very unique position because a lot of people like to throw around, 'Oh, he's a clone, he's an imitator, he's this, he's that.' And I feel like I'm damned if I do and I'm damned if I don't. My style of singing and phrasing is very similar to Geoff Tate and Bruce Dickinson and Rob Halford. I mean, a lot of my high metal screams are grittier and dirtier, like Rob Halford. My vibrato is more similar to Bruce Dickinson or Geoff Tate. A lot of the crying and ways of entering a vocal phrase and phonating, the way I say words, are very similar to Geoff Tate. I wear my influences on my sleeve, but I also think that I have a heavier vibe than Geoff Tate ever had. . . But the new songs, we want them to be heavy but still try to maintain… As a writer, the people that love the roots, a lot of those people don't wanna move past that; they love it. But as an artist, you wanna spread your wings, and you wanna try things that are creative, and you wanna still stay current. So it's like, 'OK, how do we achieve, how do we pacify the masses?' You don't wanna write a record that sounds like 1986. But you don't wanna sound so changed that the older fans aren't finding that common thread in the music that they loved that is from the early-to-mid-'80s or even early '90s, like 'Operation: Mindcrime'. I mean, that's regarded as one of the greatest concept albums of all time, and it's stood the test of time. Is that a real heavy, heavy metal record? In my opinion, no. I call it 'metal,' but it was progressive and it had a lot of wonderful instrumentation and elements, and it's a masterpiece of a work. So we just wanna do what we do."
Singer Todd La Torre, who was announced earlier today as the new frontman of QUEENSRŸCHE following the departure of that band's original vocalist Geoff Tate, has posted the following message on his Facebook page:

"I am not a 'former member' of CRIMSON GLORY. Both bands are fully aware of my involvement. CRIMSON GLORY is still alive and well, and we are continuing to write material for the new record. QUEENSRŸCHE enters a new chapter; buckle up."

The other members of CRIMSON GLORY previously issued a statement publicly voicing their support for Todd in his involvement with the QUEENSRŸCHE musicians. They said, "We are all behind Todd 100% on this. He is a brilliant, eloquent and incredibly skilled vocalist; that's why we were so happy to have him onboard with CRIMSON GLORY in the first place. It was only a matter of time before word got around and his performances were seen by the right people, that everyone would know who Todd La Torre was.

"QUEENSRŸCHE is another great example of how a band can create a legacy that is endless; we're proud to stand with them against the test of time as some of the original pioneers of progressive metal here in the U.S.

"Since we share so many of the same fans, we truly see this as a great opportunity not just for Todd, but for the fans as well.

"CRIMSON GLORY has always had a very devout following of fans, but QUEENSRŸCHE has obviously had a more far-reaching effect on the mainstream metal movement, and so we see this as a great opportunity for many of their fans to get to know our music better. Above all, Todd has been a fan of QUEENSRŸCHE for so long, and for him to have the chance to be a part of their next chapter (as RISING WEST) is a dream come true for him, and for us as as his friends as well. When he came to us with this, we supported him and encouraged him to go for it. The world deserves to have as much Todd as it can handle!

"Of course, Todd is still the singer for CRIMSON GLORY, he is a part of our family and that will never change. We are still writing the new record and we will be adding more tour dates later this year."

La Torre, who says that QUEENSRŸCHE has been his favorite band since he was 15 years old, first met QUEENSRŸCHE guitarist Michael Wilton at this year's NAMM convention in January in Anaheim, California.

"I have nothing but respect for what Geoff Tate has done to the genre. His voice is still amazing," Todd said. "The only thing that is constant is change. I hope the fans of QUEENSRŸCHE, and I'm one of them, will continue to show respect for him and all he has accomplished."
ANTHRAX will issue an EP of cover songs in September to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the release of the band's latest album, "Worship Music". "It started out as what I call 'The '70s EP'," ANTHRAX drummer Charlie Benante tells Loudwire. "It's made up of some cover songs from our favorite bands — consisting of RUSH, THIN LIZZY, BOSTON, JOURNEY … We're still working on it now, but I think it's gonna be really cool."

The following covers are expected to appear on the forthcoming EP:

* AC/DC - "T.N.T."
* BOSTON - "Smokin'"
* JOURNEY - "Keep On Runnin'"
* RUSH - "Anthem"

ANTHRAX also recorded a cover version of BLACK SABBATH's classic song "Neon Knights" for inclusion on the upcoming Ronnie James Dio tribute album which is being assembled by the singer's widow and longtime manager Wendy Dio.

Video footage of Benante laying down the drum track to a cover version of RUSH's "Anthem" (from the Canadian rock band's second album, 1975's "Fly By Night") can be seen below.

According to guitarist Scott Ian, ANTHRAX's sold-out March 15 concert at O2 Islington Academy in London, England was filmed for an upcoming DVD.

ANTHRAX's latest album, "Worship Music", sold 28,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 12 on The Billboard 200 chart. The band's previous studio CD, 2003's "We've Come For You All", opened with just under 10,000 units to debut at No. 122.
Jacksonville, Florida-based hard rock/post-grunge band SHINEDOWN will guest on tonight's (June 20) episode of Conan O'Brien's nighttime talk show on TBS, "Conan", for a truly special acoustic performance of the group's current hit single, "Unity". The appearance will see the band and TeamCoco joining forces to create an undeniably unique viewing experience. Fans at home will be able to participate in a Twitter scavenger hunt by locating key hashtags throughout the telecast. Among the exciting prizes on offer will be VIP tickets to SHINEDOWN's upcoming tour as well as an exclusive phone call from frontman Brent Smith.

"Unity", the latest single from "Amaryllis", is shaping up as another massive rock radio smash for SHINEDOWN. Currently ascending the Top 10 at rock radio outlets nationwide, the track follows the #1 success of the album's first single, "Bully", which marked the band's seventh consecutive chart-topper at the format.

SHINEDOWN's fourth studio album, titled "Amaryllis", sold 106,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 4 on The Billboard 200 chart.

SHINEDOWN landed the biggest debut of its career in July 2008 when its third album, "The Sound Of Madness", sold 50,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at No. 8 on the Billboard Top 200. This marked the first Top 10 album of the band's career.

"Amaryllis" arrived in stores almost four years after the band issued "The Sound Of Madness".

The million-selling "The Sound Of Madness" yielded six chart-topping singles like "Second Chance", "Devour", "If You Only Knew" and the title track. It debuted at No. 8 on the Billboard 200, spending 120 weeks on the album chart.

SHINEDOWN recently headlined the 2012 edition of the Avalanche Tour, with ADELITAS WAY, NEW MEDICINE and ART OF DYING also on the bill.
Last year Jörg Michael announced his departure from STRATOVARIUS after sixteen years of incredible drumming, countless tours and nine studio albums. Jörg played his final tour with the band in 2011. One of the last concerts in Finland was recorded, and will be released as a live DVD/Blu-ray on June 27. It is titled "Under Flaming Winter Skies - Live In Tampere". The DVD is the first live DVD the band has ever released, and sadly it is the final for Jörg Michael. It includes two hours of a very powerful live show, plus a 30-minute-long documentary about the band with interviews with all band members. It is a must-have for all STRATOVARIUS fans with lots of inside information, very honest interviews, and the once-in-a-lifetime departure of an outstanding member and friend: Jörg Michael. Even though he will still be working for the band on the management and agency side, it was a dramatic and nostalgic moment when he finally left the stage. As a bonus track, the Blu-ray disc contains a 5.1 mix of the 18 minute song "Elysium" from the last studio album with the same name.

It was not easy to find a new drummer who is not only an excellent musician and a cool guy, but also courageous enough trying to fill the big hole Jörg Michael has left. 24-year-old Rolf Pilve from Finland is that courageous and gifted drummer.

Commented STRATOVARIUS singer singer Timo Kotipelto: "Although the competition was fierce, Rolf was clearly the best one of the bunch. His precise playing, sureness and right attitude was there right away. He has an astonishing technique and to top that of he has a very musical way of playing, so he can bring something of his own into our old songs as well. Rolf has played a variety of different styles of metal, so fast tempos or more progressive parts will not be a problem. Whatever songs we might compose in the future — I have no doubt that he will be able to play them."

Added Rolf: "I had prepared for the audition thoroughly, learning all the songs we agreed on, with the live endings and everything. In addition to that, I had also learned some extra songs just to be safe. Playing with the guys was excellent, and already the next day after the audition I got to hear that I had been the best one of the drummers they had auditioned. What followed was yet another audition where we would play more casually and jam."

STRATOVARIUS received more than 100 applications, some of them very competent and high-caliber Finns, but also included were some foreign drummers who had already made a name for themselves.

Timo Kotipelto describes the criteria the band had for the new drummer: "He had to be a really good player, but also a nice guy. We were not looking for a Jörg Michael clone."

STRATOVARIUS has been an influence for Pilve for years, and now he gets to step into the big boots of his idol. Rolf Pilve will join STRATOVARIUS first time on stage at Tavastia, Helsinki, Finland on July 11.
British progressive metallers THRESHOLD have revealed the details of their upcoming ninth studio album, "March Of Progress", due on August 31 via Nuclear Blast Records. The follow-up to 2007's "Dead Reckoning" was recorded at Thin Ice Studios (DRAGONFORCE, PENDRAGON) by bandmembers Karl Groom and Richard West, with additional production at Eightspace Studio (LEAGUE OF LIGHTS, THE MORNING AFTER). Vocal duties on "March Of Progress" were performed by THRESHOLD's original frontman Damian Wilson (STAR ONE, HEADSPACE), who's been back touring with the band since the release of "Dead Reckoning".

Keyboardist Richard West comments on the approaching release: "It's been a long march but the new THRESHOLD album is finally ready. This is our longest album to date. We hope you're going to love it!"

"March Of Progress" will be made available in a limited-edition digipak, including a bonus track; a standard jewel case edition; as well as in a two-vinyl edition in two different colors, one of them exclusively available via the Nuclear Blast mail order.

"March Of Progress" track listing:


01. Ashes
02. Return Of The Thought Police
03. Staring At The Sun
04. Liberty Complacency Dependency
05. Colophon
06. The Hours
07. That's Why We Came
08. Don't Look Down
09. Coda
10. Rubicon

Bonus track:

11. Divinity


01. Ashes
02. Return Of The Thought Police
03. Staring At The Sun
04. Liberty Complacency Dependency
05. Colophon
06. The Hours
07. That's Why We Came
08. Don't Look Down
09. Coda
10. Rubicon


Side A:

01. Ashes
02. Return Of The Thought Police
03. Staring At The Sun

Side B:

01. Liberty Complacency Dependency
02. The Hours

Side C:

01. Colophon
02. That's Why We Came
03. Don't Look Down

Side D:

01. Coda
02. Rubicon

"Dead Reckoning" was released in 2007 and featured vocals by Andrew McDermott, who sadly passed away last year. The album entered the charts at position No. 64 in Germany, No. 95 in The Netherlands and No. 37 in the U.K. rock chart.

THRESHOLD's most recent output was the 2009 limited-edition box set "Paradox: The Singles Collection", a 24-song collection including a number of unreleased songs and recordings with vocals by Wilson, Glynn Morgan and McDermott.


Damian Wilson - Vocals
Karl Groom - Guitar
Richard West - Keyboards
Johanne James - Drums
Steve Anderson - Bass
Pete Morten – Guitar
RISE TO REMAIN, DEVILDRIVER and YOUR DEMISE are among the artists who are featured on the 21st-anniversary tribute to METALLICA's 1991 self-titled fifth album, commonly known as "the black album," made available with this week's (June 20) issue of U.K.'s Kerrang! magazine.

Enitled "The Black Album: Covered", the CD features the following track listing:

01. RISE TO REMAIN - "Enter Sandman"
02. YOUR DEMISE - "Sad But True"
03. DEVILDRIVER - "Holier Than Thou"
04. THE DEFILED - "Unforgiven"
05. YASHIN - "Wherever I May Roam"
06. HAWK EYES - "Don't Tread On Me"
07. EVILE - "Through The Never"
08. LOSTALONE - "Nothing Else Matters"
09. SAVAGE MESSIAH - "Of Wolf And Man"
10. BLACK SPIDERS - "The God That Failed"
11. MOTIONLESS IN WHITE - "My Friend Of Misery"
12. DEVIL SOLD HIS SOUL - "The Struggle Within"

"Metallica" in 2009 surpassed SHANIA TWAIN's 1997 record, "Come On Over", as the best-selling CD of the SoundScan era. To date, the black album has sold more than 15.7 million copies in the United States.

Although METALLICA had scored their first radio and video airplay with their previous effort, 1988's "...And Justice For All", the black album was the band's biggest commercial breakthrough, producing five singles and making them into one of the most popular rock bands in the world.

METALLICA will play the complete "black album" at its own Orion Music + More festival, scheduled for June 23-24 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. METALLICA is headlining both days and will perform its entire 1984 album "Ride The Lightning" for the first time ever on the other day of the festival.
According to KiroTV.com, Seattle musician Duff McKagan (VELVET REVOLVER, DUFF MCKAGAN'S LOADED, GUNS N' ROSES) will be this year's Grand Marshal of the Alaska Airlines Seafair Torchlight Parade in downtown Seattle, Washington.

This year's parade is on Saturday, July 28, at 7:30 p.m. As always, it starts at Seattle Center and heads downtown along Fourth Avenue on a 2-1/2 mile route.

"Duff is a huge Seattle fan, he loves all things Seattle, including Seafair. He grew up enjoying the hydroplane races and coming to the Torchlight Parade," Seafair President Beth Knox said in a statement. "He's just a big advocate for all things Seattle. One of the things he's most excited about is being knighted by our Seafair Queen and King Neptune."
Eagle Rock imprint Armoury Records, in conjunction with Hamburg, Germany-based earMUSIC, has announced the release of the first ever live solo album from Finnish singer Tarja Turunen. Entitled "Act I", the release will be unleashed to North American fans on September 4 in 2-CD, 2-DVD and Blu-ray format.

The first ever live audio/video offering from the former NIGHTWISH soprano, "Act I" is a mammoth undertaking recorded and filmed with 10 HD cameras at the breathtaking Teatro El Círculo in Rosario, Argentina in March 2012. With an elaborate track listing of solo tunes, NIGHTWISH classics and various covers, including a rendition of Andrew Lloyd Webber's "The Phantom Of The Opera", Gary Moore's "Over The Hills And Far Away", WHITESNAKE's "Still Of The Night" and a variety of video extras, "Act I" provides a full-fledged bill of fare to every diehard Tarja fan.

Comments Turunen of the offering: "Those two nights in Rosario were a huge emotional drive to me personally," adding that she was many times "ready to burst into tears."

"Act I" track listing:

CD 1

01. Anteroom Of Death
02. My Little Phoenix
03. Dark Star
04. Naiad
05. Falling Awake
06. I Walk Alone
07. Little Lies
08. Into The Sun (previously unreleased)
09. Nemo (NIGHWISH)
10. Never Enough (previously unreleased)
11. Still Of The Night (WHITESNAKE)
12. In For A Kill

CD 2

01. Boy And The Ghost
02. Lost Northern Star
03. Ciaran's Well
04. Tired Of Being Alone (written with Schiller)
05. Where Were You Last Night / Heaven Is A Place On Earth / Livin' On A Prayer (Medley)
06. Underneath
07. Oasis / The Archive Of Lost Dreams
08. Crimson Deep
09. The Phantom Of The Opera (Andrew Lloyd Webber)
10. Die Alive
11. Until My Last Breath
12. Over The Hills And Far Away (Gary Moore)


01. If You Believe
02. Anteroom Of Death
03. My Little Phoenix
04. Dark Star
05. Naiad
06. Falling Awake
07. I Walk Alone
08. Orpheus Hallucination / Orpheus In The Underworld
09. Little Lies (band jam)
10. Little Lies
11. Into The Sun (previously unreleased)
12. Nemo
13. Rivers Of Lust
14. Minor Heaven
15. Montañas De Silencio
16. Sing For Me
17. I Feel Immortal
18. Never Enough (previously unreleased)
19. In For A Kill
20. Toccata And Fugue D-minor (BWV 565) (Johann Sebastian Bach)
21. The Phantom Of The Opera (Andrew Lloyd Webber)
22. Die Alive
23. Until My Last Breath
24. Over The Hills And Far Away (Gary Moore)


01. Boy And The Ghost
02. Lost Northern Star
03. Ciaran's Well
04. Tired Of Being Alone (written with Schiller)
05. Where Were You Last Night / Heaven Is A Place On Earth / Livin' On A Prayer (Medley)
06. Underneath
07. The Reign
08. Oasis/The Archive Of Lost Dreams
09. Still Of The Night (WHITESNAKE)

Blu-ray track listing is the same as DVD 1 and 2.

"Act I" cover art will be revealed at a later date.

In other news, Tarja is in pre-production for her third solo album, which is expected to be released sometime next year. She says, "I have 25 songs where to choose the best ones for the album. Some of the musicians are already working on them with me."

Tarja's sophomore solo album, "What Lies Beneath", sold around 1,300 copies in the United States in its first week of release. The CD landed at position No. 24 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.

"What Lies Beneath" was released in North America on September 14, 2010 via The End Records.
Californian blues-rockers RIVAL SONS will release their new album, "Head Down", on September 17 via Earache Records. The CD was recorded in Nashville, Tennessee with Grammy-nominated producer Dave Cobb (JAMIE JOHNSON, SHOOTER JENNINGS) and Grammy-wining engineer Vance Powell (JACK WHITE, THE WHITE STRIPES, KINGS OF LEON). The artwork was created by Jason Holley (JOSH RITTER, RAY LAMONTAGNE) and can be seen below.

"Head Down" track listing:

01. Keep On Swinging (3:59)
02. Wild Animal (3:27)
03. You Want To (4:16)
04. Until the Sun Comes (2:59)
05. Run From Revelation (4:14)
06. Jordan (6:18)
07. All The Way (5:10)
08. The Heist (3:14)
09. Three Fingers (3:17)
10. Nava (2:02)
11. Manifest Destiny Pt. 1 (8:20)
12. Manifest Destiny Pt. 2 (4:25)
13. True (4:44)

Commented RIVAL SONS frontman Jay Buchanan: "We took a lyric from one of the songs that exemplified the process of making the record. 'Head down' comes from the term 'Keep your head down and keep on swinging.' I thought it was fitting and it works perfectly with the album cover."

Added guitarist Scott Holiday: "I began searching for the right artist for our cover on the interwebs, just mulling around, and very quickly came across Jason Holley. I saw a couple of covers that he had done for Josh Ritter and Ray LaMontagne, which I loved. I was immediately taken aback by his aesthetic and style and felt he had a few pieces already done that I would be into using. I sent some of his images over to Jay and he had the same immediate feeling I did… Which is pretty rare. He could have been from anywhere in the world, but he just so happened to live about 30 minutes away from me, so I gave him a ring and we started talking. We sent him the record and discussed ideas that we felt reflected the music and process. He then created an original piece, painted in oil. The end result is pretty symbolic and interesting — something that, in my opinion, reflects the record beautifully."

Holiday previously stated about the musical direction of RIVAL SONS' new album, "Songs were once again written and recorded on the spot, allowing the listener to really peer in and catch a snapshot of the moment, and our immediate instincts. Most songs were captured in a few takes, not to mention plenty of first-takers. Pretty off the cuff and unadulterated. We have never had a wish to be predictable or sedentary with our music, and this record explores and supports that ethos pretty well. In other words, this record is not 'Pressure & Time', but delves into a bunch of other musical ideas and sounds. Much more of a 'long-form' record as a whole. Fist-pumpers, ass-shakers, foot-stompers, air guitaring/bassing/drummers, tear-jerkers, heart-string-pullers, and a few straight-up freakouts."
During a recent interview with Anne Erickson of Audio Ink Radio guitarist DJ Ashba of GUNS N' ROSES and SIXX A.M. was asked about the possibility of one day getting back together with his former bandmates in California's BEAUTIFUL CREATURES. "I think I'd be fun to get together at some point and just jam for fun," he said. "They're all really good guys, and we all stay in contact still. But, I think all of us have moved on since then, and we're all doing our own thing. I think it'd be a lot of fun to get together at some point and jam, though. We've always joked about it and talked about it, but I don't see anything in the near future, because I know I'm definitely pretty slammed with my schedule. I do have a lot of respect for the guys and always wish them the best."

Warner Bros. Records signed BEAUTIFUL CREATURES in 2001, and they promptly earned a spot opening for KISS, did an HBO "Reverb" concert, played Ozzfest and spent a year on the Rolling Rock Tour before heading to Japan.

Ashba joined GUNS N' ROSES in March 2009 following the departure of Robin Finck.
Marko Syrjala of Metal-Rules.com recently conducted an interview with former TNT singer Tony Harnell. A few excerpts from the chat follow below.

Metal-Rules.com: Okay let's start from this current thing which is [that you took part in] the 30th-anniversary show of TNT [on June 2] in Trondheim [Norway]. I think that the three main words here are "never say never," right?

Tony Harnell: Well, I mean, look, when you have a history as long as the one that we had, 22 years, this was a celebration. It wasn't really a reunion. It was a celebration and it was a way for me to close the door in a much better way than I was able to do the first time. I didn't have as much control. I left in the best way possible. So this was a really nice, very nice, way of closing the door on this part of my life because it's been, like, hanging around, you know. This was, like, great for the fans. That was the number one reason I did it. Really, I turned… We've been having this discussion for a year about this. I turned it down about I don't know how many times and finally I said, you know, for the fans and for me to kind of walk through it so I can get through to the other side, it's important. It's sort of, yeah, it's just a happier way of saying goodbye to the band.

Metal-Rules.com: So was this the final goodbye from you to the TNT fans and family?

Tony Harnell: For TNT, not necessarily for other possibilities. But for TNT, I would say so. I never close the door on working with Ronni [Le Tekrö, TNT guitarist]. We always talk about that and we talked about it this trip as well, but we don't know what that's going to mean. But, of course, the music world that likes rock, you know if Ronni and I did a rock record together called something else, there would be, I'm sure, very much a lot of excitement around it.

Metal-Rules.com: Yeah, of course. If you are under the old name, there's lots of past weight on it?

Tony Harnell: Yeah, I think the best way for Ronni and I to do anything together should be done without the weight of that and I actually think the possibility of something really great could come out of it.

Metal-Rules.com: Like you said, you turned this anniversary show thing down for many times and I don't wonder it because of things what did happen in the past. Once you did split with the band, there was a lot of negative writing for years, from both sides, so are things settled now?

Tony Harnell: I don't even remember what I said, but I think probably I said something along the lines of feeling that something had been taken from me, yeah? And you know what?! I came to get it back. Now I can go. Now I can go and leave it behind. It's different. You know, when I left, there were a lot of attacks in the press and a lot of lies, a lot of lies, and it's very hard to deal because I'm in the U.S. I'm hearing about it. I'm reading the newspapers, but I'm there. They've got total control over this situation here. What do I do? Do I call the newspapers and answer every time I get attacked? So we just decided, you know what, leave it alone. Ronni's book came. It didn't really sell. So even though there was a lot of negativity there, he was just angry that I left him. He wasn't really angry at me, the person. He was angry that I left him, you know, left the band. He didn't ever think that I would do that for real, you know. So he was just… We worked all that out, you know. He just took it very far.

Metal-Rules.com: Over the past years, you've, unfortunately, lost many of your close people and friends. How much those sad things have affected your life and world view?

Tony Harnell: Yeah, I lost, you know, I've lost a lot of people in the past couple of years starting in 2009 with my mom and then Dag [Stokke, TNT keyboardist] in 2011, my grandmother in 2011 and then Mark Reale [RIOT] recently. It's getting a little old and so what I did is on my way home from Dag's funeral, I decided to do something about it. So I came home and I enrolled in a university project, a university course which is one year long and it's all about being a holistic health counselor. So I've been studying for one year and now I've been certified as a holistic health counselor in the state of New York and in the U.S. and I'm not going to do it so I can sit there in an office and take clients all day. I did it so I could learn more about health, also for myself, and I'm writing a book with a natural doctor for artists and musicians and not just some shitty, you know, book. I mean, a really cool rock and roll, very awesome book that's going to be not heavy, but light, like, just some basic, basic things you should do all the time when you're touring and when you're being an artist just to try to stay a few levels above the normal thing because our lifestyle is basically… Forget the drugs for a minute. Forget the alcohol and the drugs. You're mostly awake at night. That's not healthy. No sunshine, right? You need sunshine for health. You're not sleeping the right way. You're travelling. You're eating. This is number one. You're eating the worst fucking food on the planet. You're eating hot dogs and shit food and whatever mostly because there's nothing else around, you know. But if you're smart and you do what I do, you fill half your suitcase with protein powders and greens and all kinds of things so that when you're traveling, you can supplement. So these are some of the things that I'm working on. The book will come out and then I will probably do a little line of traveling things for artists to take with them.

Metal-Rules.com: That's a great thing and I think that might help some people.

Tony Harnell: You know, I want it to be something that has a rock and roll vibe to it, but I want it to be something that appeals to a businessman just because all businessmen want to be rock stars anyway. So if it's like a rock and roll kind of very basic health kind of thing — it's not about bodybuilding or anything. It's about basic health and if it's something like that and it's got a cool cover, I think it'll appeal to anyone that travels for a living and anybody busy that doesn't have time to be healthy, but I was inspired when I watched at the funeral when I watched Dag's… And losing my mom and going through what I went through, when I was watching Dag's eight-year-old son watch the coffin go down. I mean, you know, I'm just flying home and I'm just going and so many people I know in music, Ronnie James Dio, I mean, all these other guys that are lesser known, cancer, heart attacks, you know, diabetes, all this stuff and it's like, on and on and on and then you get into the drug stuff. Then you get into Whitney Houston and then Michael Jackson and who did we just lose now, someone else just died; a big star? Donna Summer to cancer, Amy Winehouse, drugs. It's just, it's enough. It's enough. If the book saves two lives, I'm happy. A girl came up to me, you probably don't have it, but a girl came up to me after I recorded the first STARBREAKER album, which has some great lyrics in there, and she said I used to cut myself all the time and one of your songs touched me so much that I just woke up the next day and I stopped. It wasn't even like, just something in your lyrics hit me and I just stopped cutting myself. Now, when you hear stuff like that you go, "That's why I do this."
SCUM OF THE EARTH — the band led by former ROB ZOMBIE guitarist Riggs — will release its third album, "The Devil Made Me Do It", on August 28 via Goomba Music, Inc. (with distribution through eOne in North America). Produced by Riggs and Volkstoker, it was recorded at Scum HQ in Branson, Missouri and is the follow-up to 2007's "Sleaze Freak" (Eclipse Records). The first single, "The Devil Made Me Do It III", was released last month and was heard during the recent New Jersey Devils Stanley Cup playoff games. The song was recorded at the Mansion Studio in Columbia, Missouri by Riggs and Brandon Mashburn (TRUST COMPANY, THE DREAMING).

Commented Riggs, "Being that this is 2012 and the end of the world and all, I thought the SCUM OF THE EARTH sound has ran its course, so I reinvented the sound with the help of a producer/programmer by the name Volkstroker. We worked on the songs for eight months and this was the end result. Check it out before you turn into a zombie."

"The Devil Made Me Do It" track listing:

01. Born Again Masochist
02. Via Dela Rosa
03. Zombies -vs- Skeletons
04. The Devil Made Me Do It III
05. Zombie Apocalypse
06. Sounds of the Dead
07. Pray
08. (Mindless) Dead Things
09. Ghost
10. Funeral March

SCUM OF THE EARTH's latest CD, "Sleaze Freak", was released on October 23, 2007. The explicit (PA) version of the album was made available at most retailers containing an added DVD video. The DVD consists of footage filmed while recording and mixing the album documenting the recording and mixing process and many hijinks of the band around town, in the studio, and on the road.

SCUM OF THE EARTH's first studio album of all-new material since the critically-acclaimed debut "Blah…Blah…Blah…Love Songs For The New Millennium" (2004), "Sleaze Freak" contained 13 brand new songs described by Riggs as "heavy-as-hell grinding, stripper-rock." "It's a much more intense collection of material than 'Blah…Blah…Blah…'" said Riggs. "We did everything we wanted to do this time around, which allowed us to really embody the whole red-light-district sleazy vibe into the material."
Indianapolis doomsters THE GATES OF SLUMBER have announced that their former drummer "Iron" Bob Fouts will sit behind the kit on the band's next U.S. tour. The band has parted amicably with their friend J. Clyde Paradis, who recorded and toured behind last year's acclaimed album, "The Wretch" (Rise Above Records). Fouts drummed for the band on previous GATES classics "Conqueror" (2008) and "Hymns Of Blood And Thunder" (2009), which both landed in Decibel magazine's "Best Albums Of The Year" lists.

THE GATES OF SLUMBER founder Karl Simon (guitar, vocals) and longtime comrade-at-arms Jason McCash (bass, backing vocals) invited Fouts to fill in for their upcoming tour with HAMMERS OF MISFORTUNE, which kicks off July 18 in Chicago. "We had a lot of good times together with Cool Clyde and created a massive album that will last the ages however now we are just personally headed in different directions," said Simon in a statement.

"I''m really stoked to hit the road again with our long time friend and former member Bob Fouts and I am really looking forward to see what tomorrow may bring! " added McCash.
EX DEO, the Ancient Roman-themed arsenal fronted by KATAKLYSM singer Maurizio Iacono, will release its sophomore album, "Caligvla", on August 31 via Austria's Napalm Records. The CD was mixed by KATAKLYSM guitarist Jean-François Dagenais, who has previously worked with MALEVOLENT CREATION, MISERY INDEX and DESPISED ICON, among others. The artwork and layout for the album were handled by SEPTICFLESH's Seth Siro Anton. The booklet for the new album will feature commentaries and descriptions from frontman Iacono with his views on each song. The limited first pressing will be released as a six-panel digipack featuring the bonus track "Burned To Serve As Nocturnal Light", a song dealing with Caligvla's madman rival emperor Nero. In addition, catch Iacono's girlfriend and Colombian model Suzzy in the upcoming video "I, Caligvla". Shooting commences June 22 in Philadelphia, and according to the band, the clip will be, "a resurrection in time, blood and courage."

EX DEO debuted "I, Caligvla", on April 1 at Club Soda in Montreal, Quebec, Canada as part of the "Paganfest America Part III" tour with TURISAS, ALESTORM, ARKONA and HUNTRESS. Video footage of the performance can be seen below.

In addition to the previously announced guest appearances by ALL SHALL PERISH guitarist Francesco Artusato and TRISTANIA singer Mariangela Demurtas, "Caligvla" will feature contributions from SEPTICFLESH's Seth Siro Anton and GRAVEWORM's Stefano Fiori. Every invited guest on the album is of Roman or Greek descent.

"Caligvla" track listing:

01. I, Caligvla
02. The Tiberius Cliff (Exile To Capri)
03. Per Oculos Aquila
04. Pollice Verso (Damnatio Ad Bestia)
05. Divide Et Impera
06. Burned To Serve As Nocturnal Light
07. Teutuborg (Ambush Of Varus)
08. Along The Appian Way
09. Once Were Romans
10. Evocatio: The Temple Of Castor & Pollux

EX DEO recently canceled its participation in the "Paganfest America Part III" tour due to delays in the production of "Caligvla". The band still performed with Paganfest on April 1 in Montreal at Club Soda and April 2 in Toronto at The Opera House.

EX DEO last year completed a North American tour with NILE, PSYCROPTIC and KEEP OF KALESSIN.

"Romulus", the debut album from EX DEO, landed at position No. 90 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.
Rhode Island's THY WILL BE DONE recently completed work on a brand new EP that is slated for release later this summer. The band, renowned for their DIY approach, engineered the EP themselves and teamed up once again with acclaimed metal producer Chris "Zeuss" Harris to mix their six brand new studio tracks. With influences and roots that harkens the listener back to metal's glory days, and songs and arrangements that echo the voice of the oppressed and broken, the end result is a release that brings hope and far surpasses its predecessors, and in all aspects possesses the capabilities of cementing THY WILL BE DONE's position in the metal world. More details, including title and release date will be revealed in the coming weeks.

Commented THY WILL BE DONE frontman J. Costa: "There's always a sense of accomplishment when unveiling a piece of expression that we've created. Personally, what makes this not so much different as much as special, is that it represents my rediscovery of exactly why I enjoy expressing myself through the medium of music.

"The songs on the EP are the core of what initially came together musically as well as lyrically after enduring what seemed like a whirlwind of tribulations: the passing of several relatives, infidelity, having two friends diagnosed with disease, and having one of my best friends out of my life for a period of time. All these events occurred within a span of 18 months and I almost stopped everything.

"I wanted to express the subconscious and the suffering to illustrate the subjective emotions and responses that these events caused to ignite within me.

"There's an immense physical and emotional force behind our live performances, and it was important for us to really convey that through this recording. In our opinion, the selection of songs as well as the production of this EP coalesced into a release that really exemplifies that energy."

THY WILL BE DONE will take part in the Orion Music + More festival curated by METALLICA. The event is set for Saturday, June 23 and Sunday, June 24 at Bader Field in Atlantic City, New Jersey

Following their appearance at the Orion Music + More festival, THY WILL BE DONE will be headed to Japan for a co-headlining tour with Japanese crossover legends THE AGGRESSIVE DOGS. The tour will kick off on June 29 in Kasihwa and run through July 8 in Nagoya.

With this current line-up of J. Costa on vocals, Kurt Fraunfelter on rhythm guitar, Chris Drapeau on lead guitar, Brendan Misturado on bass and Jay Waterman on drums, a plethora of foreign and domestic performances, and literally hundreds of thousands of miles traveled, it appears that values and drive mixed with an old-school metal and rock 'n' roll upbringing have brought together a juggernaut of a band that's clearing a path with a working-class ideology.

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