German guitar legend Michael Schenker (SCORPIONS, UFO) recently spoke to Mark Taylor of MetalTalk.net about Schenker‘s new album, “Bridge The Gap”; Michael‘s wishes for a UFO reformation; and Schenker‘s son Tyson and his new band STATE VILLAINS. You can now watch the chat below.
MICHAEL SCHENKER’S TEMPLE OF ROCK‘s new album, “Bridge The Gap”, features legendary German guitarist Michael Schenker alongside vocalist Doogie White, guitarist/keyboardist Wayne Findlay, bassist Francis Buchholz and drummer Herman Rarebell. The CD marks the first time Schenker and fellow ex-SCORPIONS members Buchholz and Rarebell have appeared on the same album since the classic 1979 SCORPIONS LP “Lovedrive”.
“Bridge The Gap” is described in a press release as “an album of 13 hard-hitting, adrenalin-fueled melodic rock’n'roll songs that showcase Schenker‘s distinctive and explosive guitar playing.”
The album was recorded from January to March 2013 at Kidroom Studios, Germany and was produced by Michael Schenker and Michael Voss, and engineered by Voss.
Fan-filmed video footage of BLACK SABBATH‘s November 26 performance at Forum København in Copenhagen, Denmark can be seen below.
The band’s setlist was as follows:
01. War Pigs
02. Into The Void
03. Under The Sun / Every Day Comes And Goes
05. Age Of Reason
06. Black Sabbath
07. Behind The Wall Of Sleep
09. End Of The Beginning
10. Fairies Wear Boots
11. Rat Salad
12. Tommy Clufetos Drum Solo
13. Iron Man
14. Dirty Women
15. Children Of The Grave
According to The Pulse Of Radio, BLACK SABBATH guitarist Tony Iommi is not sure if making a follow-up to this year’s reunion album, “13″, would be a good idea for the group. Iommi said in Revolver magazine, “I don’t know if that would be an anticlimax if we wrote another album. I’d like to, but we haven’t actually spoken about it, you know? I don’t know if that would be a good idea after this one, because this one’s done so well. I’m sure we’d all like to do one. But I don’t know. Maybe I should talk to the others about it.”
Bassist Geezer Butler added, “I really haven’t thought about it. I’m just glad that we made this one. It can’t be something where you go in and go, ‘Well, that one was No. 1, so let’s do another No. 1 album.’ I think we’ll know if we can do it or if we can’t. If we have to force it, then we won’t be doing it.”
“13″, the first SABBATH album in 35 years to feature Iommi, Butler and singer Ozzy Osbourne recording together, went No. 1 around the world, earning the band their first chart-topper ever in the U.S.
Ozzy said about the prospects of making another record, “I don’t want to say there’s going to be another album, because I don’t want you to ask me in another year, ‘What happened when you said you were going to do another record?’ I’ll leave it open. I’m open for anything. I have three albums to deliver of my own solo thing to my record label.”
Ozzy added, “We’ll all still be doing music. It’s been a lot of fun doing it with BLACK SABBATH, and I’m not sorry at all for getting back together.”
The making of “13″ was marked by several dramatic events, including drummer Bill Ward‘s withdrawal from the project over a contractual dispute and Iommi‘s cancer diagnosis.
Butler told Revolver that he started writing a song for “13″, called “Hanging By A Thread”, that was inspired by Iommi‘s illness. He explained, “It was very much about dying, about giving your last breath and passing your spirit on.” But the track didn’t make it onto the album because, Butler said, “We never came up with the finished thing.”
BLACK SABBATH will return to North America in 2014 for 10 shows that will be among the last in support of “13″.
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A brand new song from Welsh metallers BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE entitled “Raising Hell” was premiered on the November 18 edition of BBC Radio 1‘s “Rock Show” with Daniel P. Carter and will be released digitally on December 10.
The bandmembers, who only released their latest album, “Temper Temper”, in March of this year, recorded and produced the track themselves at Metropolis Studios in between finishing touring America and before their U.K. arena tour, where they will debut the track live for the first time ever.
Says BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE frontman Matt Tuck: “‘Raising Hell’ is a beast of a tune which is definitely taking the next chapter of BULLET into a more intense, thrasher style of metal. We’re super happy how it came out, especially as it was self-produced and can’t wait to get the ball rolling on the next album. [It's] gonna be great to get back to an edgier heavy sound. Look out!!”
The official “Raising Hell” video can be seen below. The clip was directed, produced and edited by James Sharrock.
BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE drummer Michael “Moose” Thomas told Billboard.com in a recent interview that the band has “already started writing for the next album, which is completely different from [this year's] ‘Temper Temper’.”
“It’s definitely more of a step towards our first two records,” Thomas said. “We always like to keep changing our records and our sounds and stuff. I think you have to change, otherwise it gets boring for us and the fans get bored. Look at all the great bands through rock history; they changed on all their albums — especially METALLICA. Their albums have always changed, and they’re the biggest metal band ever. So we just want to keep changing and get to another level each time out.”
Tuck told the U.K.’s Rock Sound magazine, “We’re actually going to start working on the new record before the (U.K.) arena dates (in early December). We’ve got (producer) Terry Date coming over from America, we’d like to work with him, he’d like to work with us so we’re gonna have a bonding session, write a couple of songs and see how it goes.”
Date is known for working with heavier acts like PANTERA, WHITE ZOMBIE and DEFTONES, while BULLET‘s previous producer, Don Gilmore, is known for more commercial fare like LINKIN PARK.
Tuck said about hiring Date, “When we worked with Don, he was very much focused on chopping parts out and making things concentrated, now we want to work with someone who has worked with bands like PANTERA and DEFTONES, where that mentality was probably not in the game at all. We want someone to go ‘it’s not big enough’ or ‘it’s not metal enough’ and keep us focused on our talents.”
Tuck told The Pulse Of Radio a while back that he had no regrets about the band exploring its more melodic side on its last two albums. “The big thing that we’ve learned is, like, you’re not gonna please everyone all the time,” he said. “As long as you do what you want to do and the band is happy and you feel you haven’t given away your integrity, you know, I don’t really care if people go, ‘Oh, it’s not metal enough, it’s not heavy enough.’ It’s like, that’s not what we are.”
The singer said that the band already has “four or five song ideas” ready to go, adding, “It’s riff after riff after riff after riff so far. We’re very much concentrating on musical ability, we’re showing off basically! We pulled back a bit from it on the last couple of records, on this one if we do work with Terry Date, I think it’ll be a no-holds barred display of what we’re about.”
“Temper Temper” entered The Billboard 200 album chart at No. 13 earlier this year. The latest single from the disc is “Dirty Little Secret”.
EMG TV has uploaded video footage of Zakk Wylde (BLACK LABEL SOCIETY, OZZY OSBOURNE) doing “unimaginable things with our EMG ACS acoustic pickup.” Check it out below.
BLACK LABEL SOCIETY‘s new live DVD, Blu-ray, and Digital Video, “Unblackened”, was released on September 24 by Eagle Rock Entertainment. Wylde‘s label home, eOne Music, also released the audio version of the “Unblackened” DVD under the same name. The double disc release has six additional tracks not found on the DVD, including two acoustic versions of “Queen Of Sorrow” and “Won’t Find It Here”, and covers of LEON RUSSELL‘s “Song For You” and BILL WITHERS‘ “Ain’t No Sunshine When She’s Gone”.
BLACK LABEL SOCIETY is currently working on a new studio album for a tentative April 2014 release.
Reunited grunge legends SOUNDGARDEN reissue their first two EPs, 1987′s “Screaming Life” and 1988′s “FOPP”, on Tuesday (November 26) in a remastered edition that also includes a bonus track. The set, which is coming out as a single CD, double vinyl LP and download, brings these early releases back into print after several years of being unavailable.
SOUNDGARDEN guitarist Kim Thayil told The Pulse Of Radio that a long-awaited collection of B-sides and non-album tracks only previously available on singles, soundtracks and other such releases is also on the band’s agenda. “I see that as another album, you know, as a stand-on-its-own album,” he said. “I don’t see it as a compilation, like a greatest hits or anything, because it’s an album where a lot of these songs that are previously uncompiled will be available. That always used to be a problem for me, like, hearing a song that was a B-side for a single and it wasn’t on the album and it’s like, ‘Oh man, where can I get this, you know.’”
Thayil told Rolling Stone that the set of B-sides and non-album tracks will consist of “original material that has never been compiled on a SOUNDGARDEN album. Things from compilation records, like ‘Sub Pop Rock City’, for instance, might have been on the B-sides album.”
Although the group has also recorded a number of hard-to-find covers from bands like DEVO and BUDGIE, Thayil said that there are also enough original songs “for another album-plus . . . this would be like another studio album.”
Thayil plans to work on the B-sides collection in 2014, along with a remixed version of the group’s first full-length album, 1988′s “Ultramega OK”.
As for a brand new album to follow up last year’s “King Animal”, Thayil said, “The band has talked about that. That’s something that we’ll look at in the next two years.”
The bonus track on the new EP reissue, “Sub Pop Rock City”, was originally on a compilation album called “Sub Pop 200″. Thayil called it “a nice little box of a bunch of songs capturing just about every band that was on Sub Pop then, as well as other bands that never released records on Sub Pop but were affiliated with the community and scene.”
“Screaming Life” was the second-ever band release by Sub Pop, the influential Seattle-based label that was home in the late ’80s to SOUNDGARDEN, NIRVANA, THE MELVINS and GREEN RIVER, the band that eventually morphed into MOTHER LOVE BONE and then PEARL JAM.
“The Flower Song”, the brand new videom from Tom Keifer, best known as the singer/songwriter/guitarist of the Philadelphia-based blues-rock band CINDERELLA, can be seen below (courtesy of Billboard.com). The track was inspired by Tom‘s wife Savannah, who also wrote and co-produced some of Keifer‘s debut solo album, “The Way Life Goes”, which sold 5,400 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 78 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD was released on April 30 via Merovee Records (through Warner Music Group‘s Independent Label Group).
“Women are God’s greatest gift to our world, truly beautiful inside and out,” Keifer says.
“‘The Flower Song’ is about recognizing your one true love in a world filled with so many amazing women. It can be dizzying. But then, you see the one. A miracle! I thank God every day for my miracle, inspiration and one true love, Savannah.”
“The Flower Song” video was filmed in Printer’s Alley in Downtown Nashville and it features Keifer‘s friends and family, including his son, Jaidan, playing Keifer as a child. “He had never acted before but fell right into it, no problem,” says Tom.
“The Flower Song”, the album’s first single, was serviced to AAA radio stations nationwide on February 4, while “Solid Ground” was serviced to all rock formats on March 11.
Keifer wrote “The Flower Song” with Jim Peterik, formerly of the bands SURVIVOR and the IDES OF MARCH.
“The Way Life Goes” is a raw, introspective look at the roller coaster ride that has been Keifer‘s life for the past 15 years. From being told that he would never sing again as a result of a partially paralyzed left vocal cord, to the emotional and personal battles that followed, his solo debut is a story of perseverance, a testament to the power of passion and will, when combined with a true love of music.
“It’s pretty scary,” Keifer said of his vocal paralysis. “I’ve had six surgeries to deal with the collateral damage. Performing… has been difficult for me because of the vocal issues I’ve had. I work several hours every day on that. That’s a difficult thing for me every day.”
The collection of 14 new songs ranges from intimate, organic, acoustic tracks to driving hard rock. It embraces the blues, rock and country roots that have always been present in his unique sound that has generated the sale of over 15 million records worldwide for CINDERELLA. Rolling Stone praised Keifer as “a gritty, bluesy (rocker) with enough genuine swagger to draw comparisons to Mick Jagger.”
“This record was a labor of love,” Keifer told TriCities.com. “When I started this record, CINDERELLA was in the middle of a lawsuit with Sony Records. This record is not in any way to be taken as me stepping away from CINDERELLA.”
“I took a lot of time making this record,” he continued. “I made it over 10 years. I wanted to make something I loved. My wife, Savannah (Snow), co-wrote a lot of the songs with me. It was a blessing to me.
“Each song has something to do with life. It’s just life, love, love lost, being crazy, going crazy, being lost. The record, there’s no change, really, in style. It has the peaks and valleys.
“I’ve always approached music, played music that I like. I’ve never chased trends through CINDERELLA and with this album. It reflects what’s in me.”
Former SKID ROW singer Sebastian Bach is putting the finishing touches on his new solo album for an early 2014 release via Frontiers Records. The follow-up to 2011′s “Kicking & Screaming” is once again being produced by Bob Marlette, who has previously worked with ROB ZOMBIE, BLACK SABBATH and SHINEDOWN, among others.
Says Bach: “I am sitting here just glowing.
“We have been mixing the album the last couple of days and I can never believe how amazing the recording process is.
“We have captured some kick-ass rock and roll magic and producer par excellance Bob Marlette is the wizard behind the board.
“It is such an awesome feeling to be able to say to the planet if you like the music I have put out before, I can guarantee you will dig this one! I cannot stop listening to it and that is the whole intention.
“For those of you who dig my high crazy-ass screams of the other records, well I am proud to say this new disc features all the ranges and textures I have been known for, clean soaring melodic ballads and blood-curdling death screams from hell.
“My band and songwriting partners are all top notch and I cannot thank everyone enough for helping make this with me!
“Next up mastering with Tom Baker, who did the last three albums!”
Sebastian managed to involve in the writing and recording some very special friends and guest stars, including none other than Duff McKagan (VELVET REVOLVER, GUNS N’ ROSES), and not one but two top-class guitar players: John 5 (MARILYN MANSON, ROB ZOMBIE) and Steve Stevens (BILLY IDOL). Rounding out the lineup on the CD are Devin Bronson (AVRIL LAVIGNE, PINK) on guitar and Bobby Jarzombek (HALFORD, RIOT, FATES WARNING) on drums. Duff and Sebastian previously collaborated on Duff‘s solo album “Believe In Me”.
Bach‘s recent CD/DVD package, “ABachalypse Now”, was released in North America on March 26 via Frontiers Records. The “ABachalypse Now” Ultimate CD/DVD Edition includes never-before-seen footage from last year’s Graspop Metal Meeting festival in Dessel, Belgium, the full never-before-seen Hellfest set from France and the fully-remixed and remastered Nokia show from Los Angeles (originally broadcast on AXS TV), as well as bonus music videos. The DVD contains a running time of nearly 160 minutes. “ABachalypse Now” was made available in two configurations: the Ultimate CD/DVD Edition (2 CDs + DVD) and a standalone DVD.
Canadian rockers HELIX have set “Bastard Of The Blues” as the title of their new album, tentatively due in March. Vocalist Brian Vollmer states: “The CD will follow in the vein of ‘Vagabond Bones’ and ‘Skin In The Game’; in fact, I’m thinking of putting that song on this new disc, seeing as ‘Skin In The Game’ was really only a five-song EP.”
He adds: “Anyway, I’m getting very excited about putting out new material. That’s why I do this thing called the music biz.”
HELIX in 2011 released the “Skin In The Game” EP. The CD was mixed by Aaron Murray and was mastered at Carvello Mastering in Toronto, Ontario. The artwork was once again created by Babyjack Design, who previously worked with the band on the “Vagabond Bones” and “Smash Hits Unplugged” releases.
QUIET RIOT has “amicably” parted ways with singer Scott Vokoun and has replaced him with LOVE/HATE vocalist Jizzy Pearl.
Pearl (pictured above) will make his live debut with QUIET RIOT on New Year’s Eve (December 31) in Flagstaff, Arizona.
QUIET RIOT is currently in the recording studio with Jizzy in preparation for the release of a new album in early 2014.
Says QUIET RIOT in a statement: “[We] thank Scott for his past dedication and wish him much continued success.”
Vokoun joined QUIET RIOT in March 2012 after the band played several shows the previous month with ex-MONTROSE vocalist Keith St. John following the departure of Mark Huff.
QUIET RIOT‘s current lineup is as follows:
Jizzy Pearl - Vocals
Frankie Banali - Drums
Chuck Wright - Bass
Alex Grossi - Guitar
QUIET RIOT singer Kevin DuBrow died in November 2007 of an accidental cocaine overdose. He was 52 years old.
QUIET RIOT was perhaps best known for its 1983 cover of “Cum On Feel The Noize”. The song, featuring DuBrow‘s powerful, gravelly voice, appeared on the band’s album “Metal Health” — which was the first by a metal band to reach No. 1 on the Billboard chart.
MEGADETH played at the tribute concert honoring the late Country Music Hall Of Famer George Jones last night (Friday, November 22) at Nashville, Tennessee’s Bridgestone Arena.
MEGADETH was joined by Jamey Johnson for a performance of Jones‘ song “Wild Irish Rose”.
“I am honoring George‘s belief in the veterans,” said MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine, “which is the best way I know to show respect to his legacy, and to his wife and family.”
Mustaine admitted the song “may be an unexpected choice,” given Jones‘ extensive catalog of hits. But he said the 1998 single is “a perfect example of Jones‘ way of reaching inside every one of us, and making us aware that we all have pain.”
MEGADETH was part of an extensive, and primarily country music, lineup for the event, dubbed “Playin’ Possum! The Final NO Show”. Kid Rock and R&B star Sam Moore also performed at the concert, along with Charlie Daniels, Brad Paisley, Blake Shelton, Reba McEntire, and many, many more.
Video footage of the performance as well as the pre-show rehearsal, including a short interview with Mustaine, courtesy of Nashville’s Fox 17 can be seen below. (Note: The MEGADETH segment begins around the two-minute, 16-second mark.)