The artwork by Norwegian artist Truls Espedal for Axioma Ethica Odini, the eleventh studio album by Norway’s highly renowned progressive, psychedelic black metal band ENSLAVED, is now up on the band’s MySpace page. The album will be released in Europe via Indie Recordings on September 27th and in North America on September 28th via Nuclear Blast Records.
ENSLAVED bassist & vocalist Grutle Kjellson has this to say about collaborating with the man who has painted every ENSLAVED album cover since 2001’s Monumension:
“On every new album cover, me and [rhythm guitarist/songwriter] Ivar [Bjørnson] come up with the idea of what the cover art shall include in terms of elements, symbolism and so forth. After that, we contact Truls and tell him about our ideas for the cover art. Then we arrange a meeting where we sit down for a couple of hours making sketches. Truls also has the opportunity to come up with his own ideas of how we can transform our original ideas the best possible way. He has made a masterpiece this time as well! The cover art is simply amazing! Amazing…”
Artist/painter Truls Espedal reveals how much black paint was used for the artwork’s creation and shares his thoughts on being back in action with ENSLAVED:
“I’m always excited about working with ENSLAVED, which is the reason I feel that too much time goes by between releases – ha, ha! But once again I sat down with Ivar and Grutle, and their ideas were more complex and interesting than ever. Also, their expectations and confidence that I’m able to come up with something better than before pushes me to set the bar even higher. This time around, we set out to expand further what we have done on earlier works: adding more textures and mixing the figurative paintings with the ‘symbolic’ design even more. By doing this, I feel that we are able to convey a lot more atmosphere, story, and a visually more interesting cover throughout. Hopefully, other people will think the same. It’s really important for me that the artwork is handcrafted and that the printed images on the CD and vinyl versions really show the brush strokes and have that feel to them. That is a big issue! And about the amount of black paint I used – a lot. Good times.”
Produced by Bjørnson, Kjellson, and keyboardist/backing vocalist Herbrand Larsen, the groundwork for Axioma Ethica Odini was recorded at three different studios in Bergen, Norway: 1) Duper Studios; 2) Earshot Studios (belonging to ENSLAVED members Larsen and lead guitarist Ice Dale); and 3) Peersonal Sound (owned by Bjørnson). The album was mixed by Jens Bogren (Opeth, Bloodbath, Amon Amarth, Eluveitie) at Fascination Street Studios in Orebro, Sweden and mastered by Chris Sansom (Mortiis) at Propeller Music Division in Oslo, Norway.
Axioma Ethica Odini is the follow-up to 2008’s Vertebrae, which sold over 1,100 copies its first week of release in North America according to Nielsen SoundScan and debuted on the American Billboard Hard Music chart at #11 and on the Billboard Heatseekers chart at #49. Vertebrae also won Terrorizer Magazine’s coveted “Album of the Year” award for 2008. In their native Norway, Vertebrae entered the official charts at #20 and earned ENSLAVED their third consecutive Spellemann award (the Norwegian equivalent of a Grammy).
ENSLAVED will embark on a 7-show “Circling Above and Within Tour” of Europe beginning October 15th.
View a recent interview with ENSLAVED guitarist/songwriter Ivar Bjørnson here.
WINDS OF CREATION and ORGANIC HALLUCINOSIS, two landmark albums from Polish death metal legends DECAPITATED, are out now in Europe on vinyl LP for the first time ever.
DECAPITATED’s debut album, WINDS OF CREATION was released in 2000 and was immediately hailed as an album responsible for re-igniting a stagnating death metal scene.
ORGANIC HALLUCINOSIS was released in 2006 and was DECAPITATED’s first release with new vocalist COVAN. A hugely forward-thinking and ambitious album, ORGANIC HALLUCINOSIS defined DECAPITATED’s sound and spawned a host of imitators.
Available now on limited edition coloured vinyl, WINDS OF CREATION and ORGANIC HALLUCINOSIS each come housed in a deluxe gatefold sleeve with a double-sided poster booklet. The albums are the latest releases in the ‘First Time on Vinyl’ campaign, plugging the gaps in the Earache catalogue previously unavailable on wax.
These strictly limited edition vinyls are available in the following colours and quantities:
WINDS OF CREATION
100 – Fire & Brimstone
200 – Tooth White
300 – Burning Red
900 – Black
100 – Crumbling Rust
200 – Stainless Grey
300 – Organic Green
900 – Black
NIGHTWISH mainman/keyboardist Tuomas Holopainen has issued the following update:
“Almost exactly four years ago we gathered into an idyllic place in the small village of Sävi to rehearse and arrange what would later be called Dark Passion Play. It was such glorious and inspiring times that we decided to do something similar with the upcoming Nightwish album called ………..
So again we are here in the deepest countryside of Finland beginning to create a follower for DPP. It’s just us guys for now, Anette will join the camp a bit later. We arrived yesterday and the reunion was celebrated with some water-skiing, bbq and Quilmes. I foresee the same trinity taking place more or less on a daily basis.
We just got the equipment and PA set up with the help of our legendary engineer / co-producer TeeCee Kinnunen and probably will start working with the songs in a couple of days. This campsite is so amazing we`ll let that sauna of a rehearsal room wait in silence for a while, and just concentrate on chilling out and catching up. And raising the official NW camp – flag high into the pole.
I have 12 songs completed now, but am still working with some lyrics. It’s been an immensely fruitful song-writing process, as well as very consuming and ponderous. But I feel more satisfied with the stuff than ever before. Don’t know if it’s a good sign or bad. To me the album sounds like a roller-coaster ride in a theme park designed by Neil Gaiman, Tim Burton and Salvador Dali. That’s the best way I can put it at this point.
Like before, we will record a demo once the songs are arranged, to listen to and to perfect the material, and to give to Mr. Pip Williams so he can start with the orchestration process. The actual enter-the-studio-date is set for October 15th.Again, the London orchestra and choir will be there, as well as Mr. Troy Donockley playing a slightly bigger part this time. And loads of new elements ‘n’ twists we haven’t tried before!
So things are finally rolling. We’ll keep you posted in written, as well as in visual form. Stay tuned for updates. And thanks for sharing the journey once again!
On Saturday, July 17th HALFORD, featuring JUDAS PRIEST frontman Rob Halford, played their first show in more than seven years in San Francisco, CA at the Regency Ballroom. The setlist on the night was as follows:
CITY OF FIRE, the new band featuring vocalist Burton C. Bell, bassist Byron Stroud, guitarist Terry Murray, guitarist Ian White, and drummer Bob Wagner, made a surprise live appearance last weekend opening for Fear Factory at the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver. The performance marked the first live appearance for the band this year as they ready themselves for the anticipated release of their self-titled debut album on August 24.
“I pulled double duty for the first time by performing in two bands,” comments Burton C. Bell. “Though CITY OF FIRE was never placed on the poster bills, we were mentioned on CFOX by Danger that we were making a special appearance. When we went on, there were a couple hundred people in front of the stage. And though we only had one hour of rehearsal that day, we played quite well and the audience was very receptive, especially when we played our rendition of The Cult’s ‘Rain.’ We all had a blast on stage, and we are very excited to get on the road this September. The spark has been ignited.”
While still weeks from release, CITY OF FIRE has already amassed early praise from media. Metal Hammer editor Alexander Milas calls the record, “absolutely incredible. I can’t say enough about how diverse the record is. It is not a Fear Factory record it is something completely different and unique. It is heavy and beautiful… so, so gorgeous.” Popular metal website SMN News adds, “CITY OF FIRE is a surprisingly organic and melodic album full of great and diverse songs.”
Recorded at renowned Factory Studios in Vancouver in late 2008 with additional material completed in April of this year, the album features fourteen songs, including remakes of The Cult’s “Rain” and T-Rex’s “Children Of The Revolution.” It will also include the band’s video for the song/single ‘Rising.’ Bell, currently on tour with Fear Factory, says, “my friends, I am very excited about CITY OF FIRE. Byron and I are very proud of this recording. It is a fresh sound for this era of music. Literally there is nothing that sounds like this right now, and it is time that a hard rock, groove, psychedelic sound comes to your ears. The music is passionate and soulful. It is a mature record for our time, full of wisdom and soul of the ages. Please check the record out. You will not be disappointed.”
Discussing the album’s two unique remakes and the decision to include them, Stroud recently noted, “‘Rain’ really fits well with the concept of the record and the vibe of Vancouver, which really influenced CITY OF FIRE. I have been wanting to do a version of that song for a long time and once we started writing the record, I knew this was the band to do it.” Murray adds, “aside from being a killer rock song, we chose ‘Children Of The Revolution’ because we felt the title was a relevant commentary on the climate of the world today. Kids have a lot to revolt about these days and hopefully this will be an anthem for it. We knew that Burt’s voice could give this song a modern edge to it, and make it for this generation.”
CITY OF FIRE will tour Australia and New Zealand beginning September 4. Guitarist Jed Simon (Strapping Young Lad/Zimmer’s Hole) will be replacing Ian White who cannot join the band due to prior work commitments. North American dates are now being planned and will be announced shortly.
BLACK LABEL SOCIETY mainman Zakk Wylde has told Classic Rock that he actually went to one Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, after being told to give up booze.
The former OZZY OSBOURNE guitarist had to stop drinking after being put on medication to get rid of three blood clots in my leg.
“Someone suggested that I could benefit from going to AA. So, I thought I’d give it a try. I went along to a meeting, didn’t say a word and listened to all of these fuckers bitching, moaning and whining. I didn’t go back a second time, because I have far too much to do to waste my time like that.”
Black Label Society will release its new album, Order Of The Black, in North America on August 10 via E1 Music. The CD will be made available in Europe through Roadrunner Records and in Australia and New Zealand via Riot! Entertainment.
Order Of The Black will feature four different CD covers: one for each territory: North America, Europe, Australia and South America/Asia.
Order Of The Black tracklisting:
‘Parade Of The Dead’
‘Time Waits For No One’
‘Godspeed Hell Bound’
‘War Of Heaven’
‘Riders Of The Damned’
A limited-edition version of the album featuring the bonus track ‘Can’t Find My Way Home’ will be made available internationally.
Black Label Society will perform live in the studio during its August 9th appearance on the US nationally syndicated radio show Rockline with host Bob Coburn. Fans are encouraged to speak with the band by calling 1-800-344-ROCK (7625) beginning at 8:30 p.m. PT / 11:30 p.m. ET.
In advance of the release of The Antique Witcheries the sophomore album by Midwest thrash maniacs VINDICATOR, fans can get a sneak peak at what to expect when the album hits store shelves worldwide on August 10th on Heavy Artillery Records. Preview the track “Strange Aeons” at the band’s Myspace page: www.myspace.com/savindicator
As one of the frontrunners of what has come to be known as the “New Wave Of Thrash”, Ohio based VINDICATOR laidthe framework for the band during Summer of 2005 as long time friends Marshall Law and brothers Vic and Jesse Stown came together with a singular vision, drawing influences ranging from first-wave Bay Area and Teutonic thrash to the New Wave of British Heavy Metal. Following the self-release of the band’s debut full-length album There Will Be Blood in 2008, VINDICATOR spent the next year gigging nationally in support of the album with such bands as Raven, Overkill, M.O.D., Hirax, Destruction, Exodus, and Kreator, Exmortus and many others. With the addition of lead shredder Mikey B. Lial, VINDICATOR once again hit the studio in late 2008 to record tracks for a split release with 80’s German cult metal legends Metal Witch. In late 2009 VINDICATOR signed to HEAVY ARTILLERY and began work on The Antique Witcheries a masterpiece of modern thrash metal mayhem sure to please fans of Dark Angel, Testament and Exodus.
VINDICATOR just recently wrapped up their “Coastal Catastrophe” tour and will be announcing more US and Canadian tour dates in the coming weeks. Stay tuned.
Norwegian symphonic black metal band DIMMU BORGIR proudly announce additional dates to the first European leg of their co-headlining “Darkness Reborn World Tour” in support of their new studio album, Abrahadabra.
Confirmed dates are as follows:
19 September – HMH, Amsterdam, NE (w/ KORN)
20 September – Bataclan, Paris, FR (DB Headlining Show)
21 September – Forum, London, U.K. (DB Headlining Show)
23 September – Eishalle Seutweg, Winterthur, CH (w/ Korn)
24 September – Zenith, Munich, DE (w/ KORN)
26 September – Gasometer, Vienna, AT (w/ KORN)
27 September – Alcatraz, Milan, IT (DB Headlining Show)
28 September – TBA
30 September – Den Atelier, Luxembourg, LU (DB Headlining Show)
01 October – Ancienne Belgique, BE (w/ KORN)
02 October – Rosengarten, Mannheim, DE (w/ KORN)
03 October – Palladium, Cologne, DE (w/ KORN)
05 October – Haus-Auensee, Leipzig, DE (w/ KORN)
06 October – C-Halle, Berlin, DE (w/ KORN)
07 October – Progresja, Warsaw, PL (DB Headlining Show)
08 October – Studio, Krakow, PL (DB Headlining Show)
09 October – KD Vltavaska, Prague, CZ (DB Headlining Show)
11 October – Vega, Copenhagen, DK (DB Headlining Show)
12 October – Arenan, Stockholm, SE (DB Headlining Show)
14 October – Pakkahoune, Tampere, FI (DB Headlining Show)
15 October – House Of Culture, Helsinki, FI (DB Headlining Show)
17 October – Tragarn, Gothenburg, SE (DB Headlining Show)
18 October – Sentrum Scene, Oslo, NO (DB Headlining Show)
Abrahadabra will be released in Germany on September 24th, in the rest of Europe on September 27th, and in North America on October 12th. View the artwork created by German artist / painter / graphic designer Joachim Luetke (Arch Enemy, Kreator, Sopor Aeternus) on the band’s MySpace page.
SISTER SIN‘s fist-pumping new single, “Outrage” will be the FREE Song of the Day on AmazonMP3 tomorrow, Saturday, July 17th. Offering a taste of their sophomore release, True Sound of the Underground, this single showcases what real Heavy Metal is all about. Fans of Judas Priest, The Scorpions, and Motley Crue are guaranteed to find one of their new favorite bands in Sister Sin.
In addition, SISTER SIN is out to prove that their brand of loaded metal is the most precious Swedish import. Starting this Sunday, the band heads back to the States to embark on a US tour with Michael Schenker Group (MSG) and Lynch Mob. As if that wasn’t enough, SISTER SIN will be out for a block of dates in support of the legendary Black Label Society in the early Fall. A full list of dates can be found below.
AGOURA HILLS, Calif. – July 16, 2010 – Metal Blade Records has just launched a landing page for experimental death metal act FLESHWROUGHT’s upcoming album Dementia/Dyslexia. The landing page provides metalers with music, specially low-priced offers available for preorder. The first single, Mental Illness, is currently streaming with more tracks to come before the album is released on August 3rd.
Preorder packages available for Dementia/Dyslexia:
Pomona, California thrashers BONDED BY BLOOD have finished shooting a new music video in the lead-up to the release of their ripping new album, EXILED TO EARTH.
The video for the new track, “Prototype: Death Machine”, sees BONDED BY BLOOD gearing up as a group of rebels as they fight to reclaim planet Earth from the grasp of an alien race called The Crong. The video was filmed with director DAVE VORHES.
BONDED BY BLOOD frontman JOSE BARRALES discusses the video shoot:
“Working with Dave Vorhes was a great experience. Coming into this shoot we didn’t know what to expect, but I’m glad it turned out the way it did. First day we did a performance shoot, 2pm till 9pm straight, of Prototype: Death Machine. After listening so much I’m still not tired of the song.
“Second day was the storyline shoot, this was so fun. Dressing up in costumes and shooting aliens, what’s not to love? This day was a long one, 6am to 11pm, but well worth it. Can’t wait to see the final product, I’m sure it will be epic.”
EXILED TO EARTH will be released on limited edition CD with a free patch, limited edition coloured vinyl LP, and a special, low-priced CD version. The limited edition coloured vinyls are available in the following colours:
Lazer Explosion Purple – 100 copies
Crong Green – 200 copies
Revolution Red – 300 copies
Black – 900 copies
Fans in the UK can also pre-order EXILED TO EARTH at Townsend Records with a free patch, as well as an exclusive printed version of an EXILED TO EARTH comic strip, signed by the band. Pre-order this limited edition collector’s version, while stocks last, at http://www.townsend-records.co.uk/Bonded+By+Blood
Earache Records is continuing its popular low-priced CD campaign with the addition of two new releases – Californian thrashers BONDED BY BLOOD’s new album, EXILED TO EARTH, and Detroit deathcore destroyers AND HELL FOLLOWED WITH’s upcoming album, PROPRIOCEPTION.
During the current age of recessions and economic crises, where music sales are declining as fans demand better value for their money, many record labels and retailers continue to sell CDs at high prices. To combat this, Earache Records has started the low-priced CD campaign, offering fans who are on a tight budget a selection of new releases at an incredibly affordable price.
While the CDs in the low-priced campaign are nearly half the cost of most regular CDs, each and every one is the full and complete version, and includes the booklet, jewel case and everything you would expect from a CD – except for the high cost!
Earache’s two newest additions to the low-priced CD campaign, BONDED BY BLOOD’s EXILED TO EARTH and AND HELL FOLLOWED WITH’s PROPRIOCEPTION, are available to pre-order now throughout Europe from Play.com for the astounding price of just £4.99 or €6.99 EUR.
Noisecreep today premieres a special Internet-only video for the song “Powershifter,” taken from FEAR FACTORY‘s latest album Mechanize. Filmed in England earlier this year, the video was created by noted English videographer Myles Dyer with assistance from producer Tom Bacon and cameraman David Bass. Presented in high definition, it captures the band on stage in front of an enthusiastic audience.
“Powershifter” was the first song fans heard from Mechanize when album release details were announced late last fall. Within days the song was heard by over 100,000 fans as they quickly logged on to the YouTube page that premiered the first new material to include the revamped FEAR FACTORY lineup of vocalist Burton C. Bell, guitarist Dino Cazares, bassist Byron Stroud and drummer Gene Hoglan. The song would top college radio charts prior to Mechanize hitting stores on February 9. The album dominated the chart for six weeks at the number one position and maintained top ten status for another ten weeks as programmers threw their support behind the record.
Commenting about the video, Burton C. Bell says, “I am very curious to see the reaction to this video. It was filmed by a good friend of ours, Myles Dyer. He has been a great supporter of FEAR FACTORY for a long time, and now he has become a prominent videographer. He traveled with us for about a week during the UK portion of the Fear Campaign tour earlier this year. Although ‘Powershifter’ was leaked in the early stages of release, we wanted to produce an online only video for FEAR FACTORY fans everywhere. We hope the fans take the video and spread the FEAR FACTORY word like wildfire.” FEAR FACTORY returns to American stages this weekend as part of their on-going Fear Campaign 2010 tour, performing tomorrow night at The Rock in Maplewood, Minnesota. All four members will take part in a meet-and-greet prior to the performance at Best Buy (located at 1643 West County Rode B2 in Roseville) beginning at 3pm. FEAR FACTORY, with 36 Crazyfists, Divine Heresy (featuring FEAR FACTORY guitarist Dino Cazares), and After the Burial, will performance in Des Moines, Chicago, Detroit, Toronto, Montreal, New York City, and Towson (Baltimore) before concluding this current North American tour in Allentown on July 27. The band returns to Europe beginning July 31 for festivals and headline performances in England, Ireland, Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria and their appearance at the massive Wacken Open Air Festival in Germany. Mechanize has sold over 100,000 copies worldwide since release earlier this year. Media have praised the record; Decibel Magazine calls it the “greatest FEAR FACTORY full-length in more than a decade.” Revolver says, “the record marks a clear return to the classic FEAR FACTORY sound. The result rings familiar but also fresh; even in the very futuristic year of 2010.” And Blabbermouth notes “FEAR FACTORY 2010 is a fiery and evolved rebirth of the band that changed metal in the ’90s…Mechanize is the album I have been waiting for.” Remaining dates on the current North American tour are noted below.
7/17/2010 The Rock – Maplewood, MN
7/19/2010 People’s Court – Des Moines, IA
7/20/2010 Metro – Chicago, IL
7/21/2010 Harpo’s – Detroit, MI
7/23/2010 Opera House – Toronto, ON
7/24/2010 Parterre Parc Jean Drapeau – Montreal, QC
7/25/2010 Fillmore/Irving Plaza – New York, NY
7/26/2010 Recher Theatre – Towson, MD
7/27/2010 Crocodile Rock – Allentown, PA
Montreal masters of tech death brutality, BENEATH THE MASSACRE, have announced they will be releasing an EP, featuring five brand new tracks, in the coming months. This will be the band’s first release since 2008’s “Dystopia.” Since recording “Dystopia,” the band has toured extensively: five full North American tours (including Summer Slaughter Canada 2008 and Sumer Slaughter 2009) and four full European tours (including Thrash and Burn Europe the past two years) BENEATH THE MASSACRE were nominated in 2009 for Metal Hammer’s Golden God Award for “Best Underground Band.” More details regarding the EP will be announced in the upcoming weeks.
Vocalist Elliot Desgagnes commented on the new release:
“It’s going to be two years since our last album and we had the idea of a short release while we keep writing for the next full length. We picked five songs to go on the EP and I feel like these are by far the best songs we’ve ever written. Nothing that different from our other releases but we’re always getting a little closer to the sound we want. So we’re all satisfied with the result and are looking forward to share it.”
BENEATH THE MASSACRE will appear at the Heavy MTL festival later month alongside Slayer, Megadeth, Lamb of God, Despised Icon, Mastodon and more. The band has also announced a Canadian tour beginning in late August and wrapping up in early October, sponsored by JagerMusic Canada. They will be playing with Neuraxis, Ion Dissonance and others along the trek.
The dates are:
7/25 Montreal, QC- Heavy MTL
JagerMusic Canada Presents:
8/26: Rimouski, QC- Petit Pavillon Agricole #
8/27: Moncton, NB- Manhattan #
8/28: Halifax, NS- Gus’ Pub #
8/29: St John, NB- Nickolaj’s #
8/30: Fredericton, NB – Kinsmen Center #
9/3 Ottawa, ON- Mavericks
9/4 Sudbury, ON- The Serbian Hall (w/ Neuraxis)
9/5 Rouyn-Noranda, QC- Petit Theatre du Vieux-Noranda (FME Festival)
9/10 Brantford, ON Rehab – Sick Fest metal festival % 9/11 Toronto, ON- The Rockpile % 9/12 Kingston, ON- The Mansion (Wine Cellar Room) % 9/16 Trois Rivieres, QC – Rock Cafe le Stage
9/17 Quebec, QC- L’Agitee
9/18 Sherbrooke, QC- bar le Magog
9/23 St. Catharines, ON – Mikado * 9/24 Windsor, ON – Chubby Pickle * 9/25 London, ON – Moon Over Marin * 9/26 Oshawa, ON- EP Taylors * 9/30 Chicoutimi, QC- Le Bunker ^
10/1 St-Hyacinthe, QC- Bar le Trash – Trash Metalfest
10/2 Victoriaville/Warwick, QC- Salle du Canton ^
# w/ Ion Dissonance
% w/ Aeternam
* w/ Kraken
^ w/ Divinity
Shred Guitar Master PAUL GILBERT To Release 3rd Guitar Instrumental CD FUZZ UNIVERSE on SHRAPNEL RECORDS out AUGUST 3RD
Paul Gilbert is regarded internationally as one of the greatest players in the industry. Starting his recording career with Shrapnel Records as a teenager in the late 80’s, Gilbert remains one of the most active guitarists from the original shred guitar scene. His rise to Platinum success includes a number one song with Mister Big, and cult status as founding member of the legendary and highly successful underground progressive metal band Racer X.