As 2009 draws to a close it’s time to look back on all things metal for the year. We’ve seen new CD’s from thrash Gods, Slayer and Megadeth follow on the heels of last year’s new Metallica CD. We’ve seen debut offerings from some excellent new bands, Halestorm…
Let’s go month by month and see how the year shook out.
January – A decidedly slow month in the metal community as band’s are recouping from the previous year’s heavy touring, and a much needed holiday rest.
However, Axl Rose’s mouth, er pen, ran full steam ahead. In a long winded and mostly rambling open letter to fans, Rose answered a list of questions from fans, without including the questions with his answers. Here are a couple of excerpts;
…the whole Axl wouldn’t go on stage yada yada… is complete and utter crap. Never happened, all made up, fallacy and fantasy. Not one single solitary thread of truth to it. Had that been the case I would’ve have been cremated years ago legally, could’ve cleaned me out for the name and damages. It’s called under duress with extenuating circumstances. In fact the time that was mentioned the attorneys were all in Europe with us dealing with Adler depositions.
Keeping the band name alive was very important. Not out of ego and I don’t know exactly why in the sense of putting into words but I think it has something to do with the global effect it has and how Guns surviving in some way is sometimes inspiring to others around the world and in that there’s a sense of obligation.
Perhaps the biggest news of the month was Rockstar’s release of this year’s Mayhem Festival line-up and tour dates. The Festival would cover 27 shows, in 27 cities, over 21 states over a two month stretch this summer. The line-up was massive and featured Slayer, Marilyn Manson, All That Remains, Cannibal Corpse, Bullet for My Valentine, Behemoth and Trivium, among many others. The announcement gave metalhead’s something to look forward to. As for 2010, rumors abound that Korn, Hatebreed and Rob Zombie will all be a part of the festival!
For hair metal fiends, Rocklahoma announced their 2009 line-up as well. This year’s line-up included Anthrax, Ratt, Twisted Sister, Saxon, Great White, Overkill, Stryper, and many more.
At the Swedish Grammis, In Flames took home “Best Hard Rock” honors. The award was presented by Joey Tempest of Europe. Boy, if that’s not a backhanded compliment, I don’t know what is.
Xbox 360 announces Guitar Hero: Metallica which contains 28 Metallica tunes, plus several other artists, including several that Metallica has covered, like Lynyrd Skynyrd, Diamond Head, Thin Lizzy, Bob Seger and more…
Slipknot’s Chris Fehn sticks his foot in his mask; telling the Kansas City Times, “I think we’re going to overtake Metallica. We’re going to overtake any band that sells out soccer arenas in Europe. We’re going to do it. We’re the last chance as far as the world goes.” Uh yeah, right. Say what you will about Metallica over the last decade or so, but no one will ever be bigger in this genre. They are this generation’s Rolling Stones or Led Zeppelin.
Zakk Wylde’s father passes away.
Music As a Weapon IV tour line-up announced with Disturbed, Lacuna Coil, Chimaira and Killswitch Engage.
The announcement is made that Metallica will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. “I’m not going to give a whole schpeel about ‘come back in 20 years or something,’ ” says drummer Lars Ulrich. “I’ll fucking take it right now. I’m fucking psyched that anybody still gives a shit about this band.” Hmmm, self-deprecation or the realization that they’ve been disappointing fans for over a decade? St. Anger may have been salt-peter to our ears, but Death Magnetic was like an aural dose of Viagra.
Sadly for rock fans of all genres Billy Powell (William Norris Powell) – Died January 27 at age 56 in Orange Park of a heart attack. He was Lynyrd Skynyrd’s legendary pianist and a Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Inductee.
January 31st, 80’s metal band, Keel reunited for their first concert in 20 years. The Keel “Debut Reunion Concert” will took place in Hollywood on Saturday, January 31st. The location for the historic event was Club Vodka at The Knitting Factory.
February – Things started to snowball in February. On February 5th 2009, Dutch symph/prog metallers, After Forever announced their decision call it quits, citing a realization that they no longer feel the same energy towards the band.
February 16th, Rock on the Range 2009 line-up is announced. The annual Midwest rock festival takes place in Columbus, Ohio with more than 35 acts on three stages. This year’s show will be held May 16th and 17th at Ohio’s Crew Stadium. The 2009 line-up will be highlighted by performances from some of rock’s biggest artists including Mötley Crüe, Slipknot, Alice In Chains, Avenged Sevenfold and Korn.
On February 18th, Iron Maiden won the Best British Live Act at the BRIT Awards 2009. Maiden was on tour and unable to attend but band manager Rod Smallwood said “This has to be good for metal, I don’t think many BRIT Awards have been given to metal so it’s about time it was recognized for the creative force it is. Metal and Maiden have long thrived outside the mainstream media and radio so I am sure our fans will be very pleased about this and, let’s face it, they are the ones who voted in droves and the ones we have to thank.”
On February 21, 2009, the Scorpions received Germany’s ECHO Honorary Award for lifetime achievement at Berlin’s O2 World.
East Coast rockers receive announcement for M3 Rock Festival, an‘80s and 90’s focused heavy metal music festival, in Columbia, Maryland’s Merriweather Post Pavilion on Saturday, May 30th. Along with hard rockin’ headlining sets from Twisted Sister, San Diego hard-rockers Ratt, and massive Massachusetts hard rock group Extreme. This festival features 2 stages, 16 bands including; Kix, Slaughter, Dokken, Y&T, Gilby Clarke, Jani Lane of Warrant, Keel, Jetboy, Bullet Boys, L.A. Guns, XYZ, and more. Sort of a mini Rocklahoma for the eastern seaboard.
March – On March 5th iron maiden announce special premiere showing of their upcoming movie, Flight 666: Tuesday, April 21st is “Maiden Day”!! Iron Maiden’s first feature-length film, Flight 666, will be shown at over 400 theaters around the world – but for one day only. The film follows Iron Maiden on their 2008 ‘Somewhere Back In Time Tour’, which saw which saw singer Bruce Dickinson fly the band and their crew around the globe on a specially commissioned Boeing 747 for most of the tour. Iron Maiden’s manager Rod Smallwood said,” ‘Flight 666? is an access all areas-style documentary that sees the band performing onstage, travelling and relaxing in between shows.”
March 16th – Bay Area thrash legends Testament announce they are taking the stage once again for their first US headlining tour in support of the award-winning, The Formation of Damnation; the band’s first new studio album in nine years. The tour will feature the classic lineup of vocalist Chuck Billy, guitarists Eric Peterson and Alex Skolnick, bassist Greg Christian, and drummer Paul Bostaph. Testament will be bringing along metalcore heroes Unearth and neo-thrashers Lazarus A.D. The tour kicks off May 2.
April – Holy Tournado! Metal legends Judas Priest celebrate their 40th anniversary this year, and ths month marked the 29th anniversary of the iconic album, British Steel. This was the turnkey album which broke the band worldwide. Songs like “Living After Midnight” and “Breaking the Law” are timeless metal classics. In celebration, Priest is announced they were taking to the road this summer for their British Steel 30th Anniversary tour. According to vocal-monster Rob Halford, the band wanted to get the party started early. The band planned ongoing retrospective by recreating Priest’s look and feel from that era. In addition, they performed the entire British Steel album for the first time ever. The band took Whitesnake with them, but near the end of the tour, lead vocalist David Coverdale began having throat problems and they had to leave the tour.
Rob Halford was also keeping himself busy with the announcement of his new metal clothing apparel line. “With an eye on defining consumer-fashions for today’s Rock and Roll lifestyles, Metal God Entertainment and Rob Halford are pleased to debut a new garment entity: Metal God Apparel which will debut dozens of new, edgy-designs this year for youth, teens, men and women. Metal God Apparel re-produced on custom-dyed, cotton tees integrating the newest fashion technology resulting in an extremely attractive, lightweight, soft-to-touch, active-wear for today’s global music audiences. Visit http://www.MetalGodApparel.com/ for more details.”
AC/DC announces they will return to the U.S. for more Black Ice World Tour dates this summer.
April is the month of Queensryche, who not only release their new CD American Soldier, but give military ticket holders special admission at their shows. X-Box also names them Artist of the Month.
April 5th – In Paris France, Metallica invite Saxon vocalist Biff Byford onstage to perform the Saxon classic, “Motorcycle Man.”
Many rockers in the states are not privy to the sound of Thunder, but those in the know are in mourning. The British quintet announced this month that after their July shows, they were hanging up their distortion pedals.
May – Canadian fans got a dose of Slayer and Megadeth this spring when both band’s announced their Canadian Carnage tour, to take place in June. Also on the bill were Suicide Silence and Machine Head.
On May 9th and 10th, Wacken was to hold its first festival outside Germany, with Wacken Rocks Brazil. Unfortunately, the festival was postponed.
May 10th – Ted Nugent continues to make a difference in the lives of others and, in his words, connect with “people who matter.” Today, a young Florida girl suffering from a life-threatening medical condition traveled with her family to Texas to spend four days with Nugent at his SpiritWild Ranch with the help of the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
May 11th- Heaven & Hell announce tour in support of The Devil You Know, with Coheed and Cambria as support act.
Supergroup, Chickenfoot kicked off its debut tour, starting in Seattle, Washington. It seems like everybody starts their tours in Seattle these days. Maybe I should move. Metaholic was on hand for the show, and Hagar, Satch, and company kicked some serious ass.
While on tour in Argentina, former Iron Maiden vocalist Paul DiAnno calls Maiden bassist, Steve Harris, “Fuckin’ Adolf Hitler.” Those are some serious sour grapes my friend. I’m guessing they make a pretty tart whine.
May 23rd – Shock rocker Alice Cooper gets nailed on a Phoenix traffic cam which somehow gets to the internet and goes viral. Cooper was nailed for doing 59 in a 45. I guess at his age, 69 is out. Cooper paid the $175 fine.
May 29th – Ozzy Osbourne calls out Tony Iommi over Black Sabbath copyright claim. Stating “It is with great regret that I had to resort to legal action against my long term partner, Tony Iommi, but after three years of trying to resolve this issue amicably, I feel I have no other recourse. As of the mid-1990’s, after constant and numerous changes in band members, the brand of “Black Sabbath” was literally in the toilet and Tony Iommi (touring under the name Black Sabbath) was reduced to performing in clubs. Since 1997 when Geezer, Bill and myself rejoined the band, Black Sabbath has returned to its former glory as we headlined sold-out arenas and amphitheatres playing to upwards of 50,000 people at each show around the world. We worked collectively to restore credibility and bring dignity back to the name “Black Sabbath” which lead to the band being inducted into the UK and US Rock & Roll Hall of Fames in 2005 and 2006, respectively. Tony, I am so sorry it’s had to get to this point by me having to take this action against you. I don’t have the right to speak for Geezer and Bill, but I feel that morally and ethically the trademark should be owned by the four of us equally.”
June – If KISS M&Ms were not enough, the band announced this month the release of KISS Mr. Potato Heads. Yeah, I can see Gene as a potato head. The band also announced a new “fan-directed” tour, wherein fans could vote for where the group would play, and the cities with the most votes get the shows. Trust me, if Gene thinks the band can turn a sheckle, they’ll play the Pepper Mill in Squid Hollow North Dakota, population 3095. Finally, KISS announced that they would release their first new studio CD in 11 years this fall, to be followed by their ongoing 35th, make that 36th, Anniversary Tour/Farewell part 13 extravaganza, etc. Former KISS guitarist Ace Frehley also announced a September release for his new solo CD, Anomaly.
June 1st – Metal God Entertainment and Judas Priest’s Rob Halford announce the launch of Metal God Records – a new music label providing global physical and digital distribution services for the world’s rock and metal performers. “It’s been a long desire of mine to be a co-owner and participate in the operation of a label focused on supporting the rock and metal communities,” explains Rob Halford. “The infrastructure we have been assembling at Metal God Entertainment now allows myself and other artists to benefit from Metal God Records global physical and digital distribution networks, promotion and marketing services, apparel products and a broad range of Artist & Repertoire services.”
In other news from bands with four letter names, Ratt also announced a new summer tour with Extreme, and a new album to be out this fall, which ultimately turned out to mean, next March. The album’s title is said to be called, We Cause Cancer, or Rattatouille. Replacing the sadly departed Robbin Crosby on guitar is Carlos Carvazo of Quiet Riot.
In the And Justice For All department, Rock of Love’s Brett Michaels and his band Poison performed at the Tony Awards of all places, where Brett got knocked on his ass when the curtain descended on his nose, which broke. Now if we could only bring down the curtain on that show.
For three days in mid-June the year’s first massive festival, Hellfest, took place in France, over two main stages and two tents with about 100 bands. The Cruefest stage played host to Motley Crue, Marilyn Manson, DevilDriver, Machine Head, Manowar, WASP, Queensryche, Papa Roach, Heaven & Hell and countless others. While the Main Stage hosted Anthrax, Hatebreed, Mastodon, The Misfits and more.
Finally rounding out June was the 14th annual Graspop Metal Meeting. To our overseas readers, I am envious of all your festivals. For those of us stateside, were getting fucked. This year’s Graspop was a monster. For three days, June 26-28th, many of metal’s best tore up Belgium. On day one; Motley Crue, Heaven and Hell, Papa Roach, Buck Cherry, Dream Theater, Down, Exodus and WASP, were just some of the bands. On day two; Slipknot, Killswitch Engage, Hatebreed, Lacuna Coil, Mastodon and Gojira were on the menu. Day three wrapped up with Marilyn Manson, Anthrax, Disturbed, Trivium, Epica, DevilDriver and Sacred Reich to name a few.
July – July was the month of festivals. The month started with the 3rd annual Rocklahoma hard rock and heavy metal event. The show opened up on Thursday, July 9th with Anthrax, Saxon, Overkill, Anvil, Metal Church, Leatherwolf and others. Day two brought us a night of 80’s hair bands with Ratt, Night Ranger, Warrant, Danger Danger, Helix, Hurricane Alice and more. On Saturday fans caught up with the likes of Stryper, Jackyl, Kix, Keel, Lizzy Borden, and the Gypsy Pistoleros. Finally the event wrapped up Sunday night with even more hair from Twisted Sister, Skid Row, Great White, Nelson, Bonfire, Vixen, and many others. Next year the event will be held in May.
Next up was the Mayhem Festival which started July 10th in Sacramento, California and wound down on August 16th in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. I think we can safely say Oklahomans had it made this summer. Metalholic was all over the Dallas show, interviewing just about every band there. I think I even saw you there. Yes, you in the tight blue jeans and brown hair.
Overseas, metallers got to attend Wacken Open Air which sold out last December. This year marked the 20th anniversary for one of metal’s premiere music festivals. Four stages, three days, four dozen bands and 70,000 hardcore rockers, in a state of metal euphoria. There were far too many bands to list them all, from all genres of metal. Classic bands like UFO, Saxon, Doro, and Motorhead, played alongside goth metal bands such as Epica, Lacuna Coil, and Tristania. In Flames, Anthrax, Machine Head, Testament, GWAR, and Heaven and Hell, all left their mark. Immortal and Corvus Corax are already confirmed for 2010.
Lacuna Coil brought it stateside again in July for their American Spellbound Tour, with special guests Kill Hannah, Seventh Void, and Dommin. I caught them in Boise of all places. I don’t think the cities been the same since.
Another great summer tour kicked off July 1st; the Stimulate This! tour with Staind, Chevelle, Shinedown and Halestorm. There’s bang for your buck!
Despite being British, Ozzy Osbourne celebrated Independence Day by granting independence to long time guitarist, Zakk Wylde. Ozzy said he just needed to move in a new direction. I guess he couldn’t trade in his wife Sharon for a younger model, so he traded his guitarist in for the much younger Gus G. Or did he? Another rumor says it’s 19 year old axe phenom, Dario Lorina (a much better choice, by the way). Right now, no one really knows. All we know is, when it comes to shredders, Ozzy likes ’em young. Zakk’s take, “You don’t wanna play with me anymore? Fine. Play with whoever the hell you wanna play with. Man up and give me a phone call and tell me what the hell’s going on.”
Slayer guitarist Kerry King, a close friend of the late “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott (Pantera, Damageplan), had the legendary axeman’s guitar in the studio during the recording process for World Painted Blood (although he didn’t use it during the sessions). The guitar still had the same strings that were on it the last time Dimebag played it. “The one thing that made me look at my lead playing a little differently was when Dimebag passed away,” revealed King. “Not that I’m going to fill Dime’s shoes because nobody can do that, but I paid more attention to my leads while recording this album. I wanted to make them more memorable in memory of Dime.”
Dee Snyder launches www.TakeBackTheHorns.com. Motivated by what he calls, “The systematic abuse of the metal horns,” heavy metal icon and front man for the legendary Twisted Sister, Dee Snider has launched a web site “Dedicated to the reclamation of our iconic heavy metal symbol.
“The rampant misuse and overuse of the metal horns is an insult to true fans of the music form it represents,” says Dee, ´They were never intended to be thrown by members of the hip hop, country and pop communities. We fought long and hard for the music we love to be recognized. They have no right to use our sign!”
While absolutely recognizing the humor in the situation, www.takebackthehorns.com is dedicated to not only raise awareness of this abuse, but the site has been designed to inform and educate the reader on the history and proper use of the metal horns. Dee Snider hopes it will unify the massive, heavy metal community in the fight to stop the metal horns further exploitation and degradation. Says Dee, “I appreciate the appeal of throwing the horns and even acknowledge its overuse shows just how far the acceptance of heavy metal has come as a music form. But when little Johnny throws the horns to his mom because he’s successfully made a number two, things have gone way too far.”
July 27th – Speaking of big mouths, while fighting off a shark in the Long Island Sound (that’s his story and he’s sticking with it) Dee Snider received a severe cut across the front pad of his left foot requiring 10 stitches. Due to this injury, he was unable to walk and Twisted Sister’s appearance on the Jimmy Fallon Show has to be rescheduled. Said Dee, “I have NEVER performed sitting down, and I never will…especially with a full face of makeup! DAMN YOU SHARK!”
July 27th – Anthrax announced it was parting ways with vocalist Don Nelson which caused the cancellation of their remaining July dates, and upcoming tour with Slipknot. The band announce that they will play the August 1 Sonisphere festival in Knebworth, England, with their good friend John Bush (Anthrax’s vocalist from 1992 to 2005) joining them for a very special one-off performance. The loss of Nelson will also push back the fall release of the band’s new CD, “Worship Music.”
Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden and Judas Priest are among the featured artists on the soundtrack for Madden NFL 10 from Electronic Arts Inc.
August – Wacken Open Air Seaside/South took place on August 27th – 29th, headlined by Slayer, with Flotsam and Jetsam, Krypteria, Warpath, Volbeat, Doro, Stratovarius and many others…
On August 12th the world lost a legend when iconic guitarist and guitar maker, Les Paul passed away at 91 years of age. Some people make an indelible mark on our lives, and if you’re reading this now, whether you know it or not, he has forever changed your life too. Without Les Paul’s gifted musicianship and innovative creativity we would not have rock and roll or heavy metal as we know it now.
Another modern iconic guitarist, Joe Satriani, called Paul “the original guitar hero and the kindest of souls. Les Paul set a standard for innovation that remains unsurpassed. He was and still is an inspiration to us all.”
ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons said, “Les Paul brought the six string to electricity and electricity to the six string. He was an innovator, a groundbreaker, a risk taker, a mentor and a friend. Try to imagine what we’d be doing if he hadn’t come along and changed the world as he most, indisputably, did. There will always be more Les to come. That’s certified.”
Somewhere in heaven, Les is tuning up for his greatest gig yet.
While on tour with Judas Priest, Whitesnake is forced to cut the tour, and the show short. Only 4 songs into a performance at the Red Rocks Amphitheater in Denver, Colrado, vocalist David Coverdale announced to the crowd: “Listen, I sincerely sincerely apologize. I have no fuckin’ voice left. I tried, I just can’t do it. I’m so sorry. It hurts when I do this.” The following day Coverdale saw a specialist who discovered that David was suffering from severe vocal fold edema and a left vocal fold vascular lesion. He was instructed to cancel all performances.
In other injury news, Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler fell off the stage at this year’s Sturgis rally in North Dakota, which ultimately lead to a cancellation of their tour with ZZ Top.
KISS announces deal with Wal-mart to release new CD/DVD set, Sonic Boom exclusively through the major retailer. This follows a path previously blazed by AC/DC, Eagles, Journey and Foreigner.
Motley Crue announces that Cruefest will go on hiatus in 2010, returning in 2011, then hints that Cruefest might still happen in 2010 without Crue.
August 19th – While performing in Montana with Black Label Society, Zakk Wylde had to be rushed to a local hospital where it was discovered he had a blood clot. He was quickly pronounced fit and sent back on the road.
August 21st – John Mayer and Slash cruised onstage and played “La Grange” and “Tush” with the ZZ Top at their House of Blues show in West Hollywood. Said Slash of the event, “That was a gas [Friday] night. Billy [Gibbons] was phenomenal and John Mayer is a pretty bad-ass player as well.” True, true. Mayer ain’t metal but he’s a wicked-ass guitar player.
September – Hair metal rockers Dokken appear in a series of Norton anti-virus commercials.
September 18th – Five Finger Death Punch guitarist goes missing. Friday night the band played their CD release party at the Hard Rock in Las Vegas. Zoltan was last seen around 2:00 a.m. Friday night at Wasted Space in the Hard Rock Casino, taking tequila shots at the bar with a group of guys from a bachelor party who came to the show. He’s been missing ever since. This coming Tuesday (9/22) the band will release its second CD, War Is The Answer, before heading out on their Shock and Raw tour. Zoltan turned up in time for the band’s scheduled tour departure with no real explanation.
In a New York Post interview, Kiss bassist Gene Simmons was asked about his thoughts on President Obama. replied Simmons, “Means well, lacks experience. And that’s dangerous. I voted for President Obama, but his health care plan is a complete disaster. When I was growing up, it was ‘Make Love, Not War,’ and that’s great, but what if the other side wants to make war?”
September 13th – Tesla’s Frank Hannon releases special track “The Heroes.” Writes Frank, “September 11, 2001 is a day that none of us will ever forget, and I remember clearly waking up that morning and turning on the news before the second plane hit the World Trade Center. I remember thinking to myself ‘Oh Man, look at all those firemen going in there…‘ and then the unexpected happened…it was a tragic event and the lyrics in this song are inspired by the heroic demonstration showed by the men and women of the New York Fire Department that day and the days following 9/11. The Heroes” is a new song I wrote just this last month as we approached the anniversary of 9/11, and it finally all came together yesterday when Troy Luccketta (Tesla’s drummer) added his drums tracks from Nashville over long distance via the internet! I wanted to write a song about how as everybody was running away from the disaster, the Firefighters were running into it with the goal of saving lives…true heroism.” You can download the track at frankhannon.com. Profits from the single will be donated to help the victims of the 49er fire in Auburn CA, as well as the FDNY families and survivors of 9/11.
Detroit’s legendary Cobo Hall is torn down. This is the venue where the classic Kiss Alive! was recorded in 1975.
Queensryche adds Lita Ford to the American Soldier tour. Ford will hit the stage during the Queensryche set to perform three songs including her Top 10 Billboard hit (performed with Ozzy Osbourne), “Close My Eyes Forever,” which she will duet with ‘Ryche front man Geoff Tate.
For all songs, Lita will be backed by ‘Ryche. “We’re elated to have Lita Ford performing with us,” comments Geoff Tate. “I have been a fan of Lita’s as long as I can remember and look forward to the upcoming tour with her.”
The feeling is mutual as Lita comments, “I’m so excited about how we’re doing this tour. It’s a really cool way to do a show. I’m looking forward to getting out there and seeing my fans again as well as meeting Queensryche’s fans. It should be a real fun time for all.”
October – Sixx:A.M. vocalist/guitarist James Michael has revealed that the band is working on new material. James stated, “The first 10 days of recording the new Sixx: A.M. record have been incredible! I promise that we’ll all get the video cams rollin’ soon.”
Meanwhile Sixx:A.M. co-founder and Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx says, “I can’t really tell you what the concept is, because I think I’d just be kind of blowing the surprise, like telling what you’re getting for Christmas before it comes. But it’s gonna be a pretty powerful record. You know, sonically it does fall in line with the Heroin Diaries record, but I think we’re stretching out in certain ways where we can take in other styles of music and expand upon them.”
October 5th- British thrashers, Evile lost one of their own today as bassist Mike Alexander passed away suddenly while the band was on tour in Sweden. Evile have confirmed that they are carrying on as a band following their bandmate’s untimely death. According to guitarist Ol Drake, Mike died of a pulmonary embolism, a blockage of an artery in the lung.
Dani Filth of Cradle Of Filth announced the band have started working on a new album with “the skeletal structures of a few songs laid out”, sounding “very much like the ‘Godspeed…’ album thrust up a gear”.
October 16 – Metallica bassist Robert Trujillo joined Rodrigo Y Gabriela — the dynamic Mexican duo who became international world-music superstars with their self-titled album of aggressive acoustic guitars and irresistible Latin rhythms — on stage at the Riviera Theatre in Chicago, Illinois to perform acoustic versions of the Metallica classics “Master Of Puppets” and “Orion”.
Opeth’s tour bus crashed into another car that made an unexpected U-turn in the middle of the highway as the band and their crew were on their way to Brussels/Belgium. Nobody in the band or crew got hurt, but apparently the driver of the other car got critically injured and later passed away. Opeth will go ahead and play the Brussels date on the 17th as well as the remaining shows of the Progressive Nation tour.
Oct. 18th- the Scorpions performed at the Super Six World Boxing Classic that aired live on Showtime. The band tuned up their hit “321? from their last CD, Humanity Hour 1 for the main bout as “King” Arthur Abraham made his entrance. The band also announces the upcoming release of their new DVD Amazonia – Live in the Jungle which hits shelves November 20th. Their new CD, due in March 2010 is said to be titled, Sting in the Tail.
Mastodon makes the jump to late night television, appearing on the October 30th, Jimmy Fallon show.
We Are The Fallen inks a deal with Universal Republic Records. The band’s name is quite apt as three of the members, including guitarist Ben Moody were booted from Evanescence and vocalist Carly Smithson was the most controversial dismissal from American Idol in the show’s seven season history. Their sound will undoubtedly be linked inexorably to early Evanescence, but as Moody says, “There’s no reason we can’t both exist in the world. Musically, we’re going in completely different directions.”
Canadian rockers Hail the Villains signs their own deal with Roadrunner Records. Their debut CD, Population: Declining will be out in March 2010, but you should check them out now on MySpace or at Reverb Nation.
Finally, Overkill signs with Nuclear Blast records, and will release their new CD, Ironbound in February 2010. Vocalist Bobby Blitz commented: “Good to be with a label that understands what Overkill are about and what metal is about in 2010, exciting!” The band will follow the release with a 25th anniversary tour. Metalholic will bring you an interview for Christmas. But only if your naughty.
November – Rob Zombie disappoints waiting fans as he pushes back the release of Hellbilly Deluxe 2. originally slated for a November 17th release the CD is now moved to early 2010. The announcement came as Zombie left his record label of 18 years and moved over to (who else) Roadrunner. “It certainly wasn’t an easy decision to make after all this time, but it had to be done,” states Zombie. “I love this new record and wanted to surround myself with an excited new group of people who can reignite my enthusiasm for working within a hard rock record label.” Zombie is currently in the midst of his U.S. tour.
November 3rd – Judas Priest frontman, Rob Halford releases a Christmas CD? Winter Songs hit shelves today, and Halford, who says he’s always wanted to do a Christmas album, is full of good cheer, “The Halford band has assembled a fantastic release, and we’re excited to have produced a collection of holiday tracks which all of us have enjoyed from a very early age.”
Songs not included on the record include “Hell Bent For Santa,” “You’ve Got Another Gift Coming,” “Defenders Of The Sleigh” or a reworked version of “Breaking The Law” entitled “Drinking The Nog.”
Dio’s European tour has been cancelled after Ronnie was taken ill. “Ronnie has been hospitalized and we are waiting for further news,” explains Ronnie’s wife/manager, Wendy Dio. No further information is available at this time. Wendy Dio did later express her thanks to all the fans who wished Ronnie support.
Five Finger Death Punch has been forced to cancel some European tour dates as guitarist Zoltan Bathory deals with an illness. One fan suggested they should go on as planned as simply call the band Four Finger Bitch Slap.
Chickenfoot are set to hit the bigscreen. A live concert film featuring the supergroup will hit select theaters across the U.S. on December 1st. Titled Chickenfoot Live, it boasts the very first filmed live show of the band (in HD!), which includes former Van Halen members Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony, Red Hot Chili Peppers’ drummer Chad Smith, and legendary guitarist Joe Satriani.
November 24th, KISS announces European tour and remember the passing of longtime friend and drummer, Eric Carr. “Sadly, today is the 18th anniversary of the death of our beloved friend Eric Carr.”
Lacuna Coil singer, and animal defender Cristina Scabbia has responded to criticism that she is wearing “too many clothes” in her new brand-new public service announcement for peta2, the world’s largest youth animal rights organization. In the ad Scabbia urges shoppers to seek out only cruelty-free products and appears above the tagline “Animal Testing Breaks Hearts.”
Writing on her Facebook page, Cristina states, “Awesome! Someone criticized the new PETA ad with me… just ’cause I’m wearing TOO MANY clothes on in it!!!!
“I feel absolutely comfortable with my sexuality and body, but for a serious topic, do I really need to show my skin ‘just ’cause?’ I don’t think so. I created a new trend, though; usually people throw shit and criticize about the opposite! Anyway, the PETA ad is about something and someone who’s NOT me.”
Trivium announces drummer Travis Smith is sitting out the second leg of the band’s North American Into The Mouth Of Hell tour in order to take care of “some personal business” at home. Filling in on drums for the tour is Nick Augusto, a former Trivium drum tech and a member of the band Maruta.
Graspop Metal Meeting has announced the following band’s confirmed for 2010’s 15th Anniversary festival in Belgium. KISS, Ratt, and Sepultura as well as Alestorm, Behemoth, Immortal, Korpiklaani, Tarja (former Nightwish), Bleeding Through, All Shall Perish, Jon Oliva’s Pain, Walls of Jericho, Anvil, Deadlock, Ignite, My Dying Bride and several others.
Graspop is not the only major festival KISS will be headlining this summer. With a career spanning 36 years, more than 100 million records sold, a new studio album (their best in 30 years), and a ridiculous number of explosive concerts, KISS is perhaps the biggest band in the world. Love ’em or hate ’em, they are still metal monsters, and KISS is the first revealed headliner of the Hellfest 2010, which will take place in Clisson the 18th through 20th of June 2010. A few of the other 32 bands already confirmed include Behemoth, Immortal, Sepultura, Twisted Sister, GWAR and Agnostic Front.
New Jersey’s Monster Magnet signs with Napalm Records.
November 15th – 20th – Shiprocked set sell again this year from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida to Jamaica. Rockers from all over spent five days on the ocean with the guys in Tesla, Ratt, Queensryche and Skid Row, to name a few. Now that’s a voyage to be thankful for.
December – This month, (the 8th to be exact) marks the 5th anniversary of the tragic death (assassination) of our brother in arms, the late great ‘Dimebag’ Darrell Abbott. The co-founder and guitarist for Pantera and later, Damageplan, touched people’s lives not simply through his music, but through his soul. If you ever met him, you’d know what I mean. This month, in honor of Dime, the U.K.’s Metal Hammer magazine is releasing a special tribute CD in memoriam. So far the band’s and tracks performed which have been announced are as follows;
* FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH – “A New Level”
* UNEARTH – “Sandblasted Skin”
* BIOHAZARD – [to be announced]
* KIUAS – [to be announced]
* MACHINE HEAD – “Fucking Hostile”
* CHIMAIRA – “Slaughtered”
* EVILE – “Cemetery Gates” (represents Mike Alexander’s last recording prior to his untimely passing)
* THROWDOWN – [to be announced] *** I should have the answer to this one tomorrow
* ZAKK WYLDE – “Suicide Note Pt. 1”
* THIS IS HELL – [to be announced]
Other artists that are rumored to have contributed songs to the CD include Malefice and Sylosis.
Have a Merry Metal Christmas and we’ll see you next year!