Llexi Leon, creator of the multi-media concept Eternal Descent, conducted an interview with FIREWIND/OZZY OSBOURNE guitarist Gus G. shortly before Ozzy Osbourne’s July 3, 2010 performance at the iTunes festival at London, England’s Roundhouse. Watch the chat below.
Gus G. is featured in the third issue of the gothic comic book series Eternal Descent, slated for publication later this month. The issue features a storyline inspired by guitar hero Gus G. who helps ETERNAL DESCENT characters Lyr and Sirian race against time to save Apollo and the rest of the band from the dissonant call of the Damned.
Gus G. - Eternal Descent
The comic book will be available at comic book stores worldwide through Diamond Distribution.
Llexi Leon recruits ESP artists for cameo appearances in the Eternal Descent comic which is inspired by a host of iconic metal musicians.
The launch issue came out on March 31, 2010, with subsequent issues to be released every 4-6 weeks.
Eternal Descent spotlights GOD FORBID guitarist Doc Coyle in issue 2, and Gus G. of FIREWIND and OZZY OSBOURNE in issue 3. Other bands — including STATIC-X, ATREYU, CHILDREN OF BODOM, and SOULFLY — are slated for cameo appearances in upcoming issues.
“Llexi Leon really caught my attention when I met him at NAMM, and he described his vision of combining actual rock dudes in his comic book series and doing an issue with each one,” explains Gus G. “I immediately asked him if we can be in one of his books and that’s how the whole thing started. It’s incredible! I feel Llexi has done a great job in capturing all of the band members’ characters.”
To view images from the Eternal Descent comic book issue #3 featuring Gus G., go to this location.
The End Records has set an August 31 U.S. release date for former NIGHTWISH singer Tarja Turunen’s sophomore solo album, “What Lies Beneath”. The CD’s first single, “Falling Awake” (featuring Jason Hook from FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH), will be released August 17 as a limited-edition seven-inch single through The Omega Order and available August 24 at all digital outlets . The track is backed with “The Good Die Young” — a song from the SCORPIONS’ most recent album that features Tarja’s vocals.
Featuring U.S.-exclusive artwork and a bonus track, “What Lies Beneath” was recorded and produced by Tarja and mixed by Tim Palmer (PEARL JAM, THE CURE, ROBERT PLANT), Colin Richardson (SLIPKNOT, MACHINE HEAD, BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE) and Slamm Andrews (scores of “Angels & Demon”, “Pirates of The Caribbean”, “Gladiator”). Special guests on ther CD include Phil Labonte (ALL THAT REMAINS), Joe Satriani, Jason Hook (FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH), Will Calhoun (LIVING COLOUR), Slovak National Symphony Orchestra and Choir and more. A limited-edition deluxe version of “What Lies Beneath” is in the works, with details to be announced soon.
A five-minute video clip featuring footage from the recording sessions for Tarja’s new album can be viewed below. The audio track featured in the video is an edited version of “Falling Awake” featuring a guest appearance by Joe Satriani (CHICKENFOOT) on guitar. “What Lies Beneath” track listing:
Legendary Arizona thrashers FLOTSAM AND JETSAM recently confirmed a September 14th release date for their new album, The Cold, via Driven Music Group.
The Cold will include the following tracklisting:
‘Blackened Eyes Staring’
‘Better Off Dead’
The Cold features original guitarist Michael Gilbert, who rejoined the band this past March.
About the return of Gilbert and the departure of long-time guitarist Ed Carlson in March, drummer Craig Nielsen explained to BraveWords.com that “it was a surprise to everybody, because Ed really has done some great things for his life as he’s been sober for years now. He really feels the benefit from that development. Last couple tours we went on in Europe, everybody thought the band played better than ever. I know people say that a lot, but we really are playing better than ever if that’s possible, and Ed was part of that. But he felt that, for whatever reason, his heart was drifting a little bit from the process from the actual touring. I mean, he loves to play and he feels everybody’s his, you know, blood brother, but he just wasn’t getting the same thrill out of touring or recording or writing. I don’t know if that’s connected with what process – the sobriety, in general from having been a musician for his whole life, I mean who knows what the basis of why he feels that way, but all I know is he just didn’t want to tour anymore and his writing sort of fell by the wayside lately in terms of content. So, he just felt he wasn’t contributing much and he didn’t really want to do this coming tour, so we were all kind of surprised by it ‘cause we felt we were just as strong, strong as can be. But he has to do what he has to do, so Mike Gilbert immediately stepped in and said, ‘hey, you know, I’m more fired up than ever,’ and we’ve done a couple things with Gilbert throughout the years, when either Mark Simpson or Ed Carlson couldn’t make it, so we knew his heart was still in it. And he’s been playing constantly all these years, with one band or another, so his chops are fully together, and he’s just a very reliable guy, so we felt very comfortable asking him to come back and do the tour and be a permanent part of the band again.”
Nielsen commented recently about the direction of The Cold: “The writing for the record started 2007, which we started recording in 2008, or 2009. I mean, basically let’s just call it 2008-2009 ideas. You know, Mark (Simpson; guitar) had some time for this, and he spent some time writing, whereas Dreams Of Death was sort of rushed and we probably didn’t use the right producer for a metal record on that record. This is going to sound like a metal record. It has a lot of guitar edge and drums are, you know, faster, better, stronger. You know, Jason Ward could basically play bass over almost anything and it’ll have depth. So, you know, we’re very happy with the technical aspect of the song-writing. There’s far more faster, heavier songs on this one. A.K. (Knutson; vocals), he was changing the lyrics up until the minute when he was recording them. I think Dreams Of Death kind of went off in a few different directions. I think this is more cohesive and I won’t call it a concept record. There’s one thing to be said for spontaneity and that’s great to write a few inspired riffs, but to write a whole record and arrange it, you need some time. And Mark had the time and he’s developing more as a songwriter/arranger as time goes on, and he’s getting better at it, and he knows what to get out of the studio better and he knows how to, what, for tones and process, he’s more educated. So we’re way happier with this one than the last couple.”
“Ozzy Osbourne and Tony Iommi of the legendary heavy metal band BLACK SABBATH have amicably resolved their problems over the ownership of the Black Sabbath name and court proceedings in New York have been discontinued. Both parties are glad to put this behind them and to cooperate together for the future and would like it to be known that the issue was never personal, it was always business.”
As previously reported, Iommi recently spoke to Paul Cole from Sundaymercury.net about a number of topics including the HEAVEN & HELL one-off show – A Tribute to Ronnie James Dio, which will be held at the High Voltage Festival on Saturday, July 24th and will feature the vocals of Glenn Hughes (ex-DEEP PURPLE, BLACK SABBATH) and Jorn Lande (MASTERPLAN).
“This will be the very last gig we play as Heaven & Hell,” reveals Iommi. “We chose the name because the band comprised the Black Sabbath line-up that made the Heaven & Hell album. We couldn’t carry on under that name without Ronnie. It just wouldn’t be right, and none of us has the desire to do that. We wouldn’t call ourselves Black Sabbath either.”
When asked about what’s next for Iommi he responds: “We’d like to do something, and carry on playing. But in what form – and with what singer – I don’t know. Geezer (Butler) is back in Britain this week so we can rehearse for the tribute. Maybe then we’ll have time to see what the future holds.”
So is a full-blown Black Sabbath reunion on the cards, or have too many harsh words been spoken? Tony is not ruling anything out.
“I spoke to Ozzy while I was in Los Angeles after Ronnie’s funeral, and he said he’d give me a call when he got to England on his own tour,” he reveals. “But I’ve not had that telephone call yet. Ozzy and I have a complicated relationship but we’ve always kept in touch, no matter what else might have been going on. Would I play with Ozzy again? Who knows? It’s weird with me and Ozzy. There can be all sorts of shit going on but when we talk, it’s like nothing bad has ever happened. Once the tribute is done, we can all sit down and decide what it is exactly that we’d like to do.”
Demonstealer Records is proud to announce the signing of two of India’s most promising young bands – Devoid, a thrash metal band from Mumbai, and Albatross, a band that likes to mix horror and metal.
The debut efforts from both bands are scheduled for a worldwide release in September 2010.Albatross will be releasing their EP Dinner Is You which has been mastered by acclaimed Swedish producer Andy LaRocque (King Diamond, Death, Illwill, X-World/5) and Devoid will launch their much awaited debut album A God’s Lie.
Arun (Vocals/Guitar) from Devoid had this to say about the new signing “We take pride in announcing that Devoid will be releasing our debut album A God’s Lie through India’s premier record label Demonstealer Records who have successfully launched Indian bands like Demonic Resurrection, Myndsnare, IIIrd Sovereign etc. to name a few. We have immense faith in DSR and we believe there is no better way to launch ‘A God’s Lie’ than from the people who fully understand the metal sensibilities of this country. We look forward to this successful venture and we thank Demonstealer Records for believing in us and giving us this opportunity.”
Bassist and founding member of Albatross, Riju Dasgupta commented “We’re extremely honoured to be on India’s premier metal record label Demonstealer Records. We’re sure they’ll give us exactly the kind of exposure and support we’re looking for. Just a word of warning, be scared…be very scared. Albatross is coming to get you.”
Lynch Mob is getting ready to embark on a summer tour in support of their current release “Smoke and Mirrors” on Frontiers Records. The band line-up for this tour consists of George Lynch (shred master), Oni Logan (vox), Michael Devin (bassologist) and Brian Tichy (time-keeper).
After seventeen long years singer Oni Logan and guitar wizard George Lynch found their way back together and again show their amazing abilities in some killer new Hard Rock songs.” I would say this new record “Smoke and Mirrors”, is the record we should have put out as a follow up to “Wicked Sensation”…better late than never I guess…”, says Lynch presenting the new record. LYNCH MOB – TOUR SHCEDULE
Ian McFarland & Mike Pecci of Killswitch Productions have made their video for MESHUGGAH’s “Bleed,” a song off the band’s Billboard Top 200-charting 2008 release, obZen, available for viewing in high-definition. Check it out below:
The 3rd episode of OCEANO TV has been posted on the band’s YouTube page. In this edition, vocalist, Adam Warren lets fans in on his daily routine. Starting from the time he wakes up at (way past) the crack of noon, Adam shows fans all the steps behind making his vocals on CONTAGION sound so undeniably monstrous. Watch as Adam heats up his special pre-session warmup drink. Learn Adam‘s secret warmup routine. Finally, view just how beastly his vocals will sound on CONTAGION by way of an in-studio camera that filmed his sessions.
North Carolina experimental extreme metal troupe GOLLUM are pleased to unleash their latest video for “Blacksmith (Summoning Wrath),” which comes off the band’s critically-acclaimed The Core full-length released via Rotten Records last spring. The video was shot in the summer of 2009 in the band’s hometown of Wilmington. The band performance portion was shot in a studio and later cropped and transformed into abstract CGI while the “movie” portion was filmed in a welding warehouse to capture a blacksmith at work. Commented the band of the video’s concept: “The concept for the ‘Blacksmith (Summoning Wrath)’ video was to have this visually experimental and abstract CGI background during our performance intertwined with a ‘movie’ depicting a blacksmith forging a battle-ready sword. With the limited resources and good dedicated friends that know how to film and use video software helping out, we think we accomplished that vision, even on such a slim budget!”
In related news, GOLLUM recently announced their appearance on the August 3rd stop of the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival in Raleigh, North Carolina. This marks the second year in a row GOLLUM find themselves on the bill for the prestigious event. “We are thrilled to be invited back a for the second year in a row,” said the band. “Last year, West Palm Beach, Florida was so surreal and unbelievable! We really look forward to playing on the Jager stage at the Mayhem Festival again this year; this time in front of our home state crowd in Raleigh! Thanks to Jagermeister! We are currently planning a fall tour and are in pre-production for the our next record.”
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.