JUDAS PRIEST's ROB HALFORD: 'The Band Is More Than One Person'
In a brand new interview with Rock Confidential, JUDAS PRIEST singer Rob Halford spoke about the departure of founding guitarist K.K. Downing and the addition of Richie Faulkner to the group's ranks in 2011.
"I've always said the band is more than one person," Halford said. "I still believe that. It's all about chemistry and it's all about the abilities you bring with your musical expertise. When you combine all of those things, it becomes part of a process. At the end of that process, you end up with a bunch of songs on a record.
"I can't say enough about Richie's contribution, musically. He's such a great guy and an amazing musician. He's a true player and can perform on stage and has amazing writing skills. Then there's the generation gap, which isn't a bad thing.
"On the last tour, I saw that guy on the edge of the stage just playing away and it was so exciting. It makes you react.
"If you can still pull together the elements of greatness, then surely great things will come of it, and that's certainly the case with Richie."Halford also talked about the responsibility JUDAS PRIEST feels to keep metal alive 40 years into the band's career.
"I read [the Internet] message boards," he said. "Every day I read the PRIEST boards and at least a dozen metal web sites around the world. I read what people are saying about PRIEST. There is a tremendous display of passion and quite a serious tone attached to some of it as well.
"You should have a responsibility to yourself to make the best music you can make — don't take second guesses or drop the bar. That's difficult in JUDAS PRIEST. It's like the waves coming in to the shore. Sometimes you have a really high tide and sometimes you have a really low tide. That's natural in any band that's had a long life.
"The elements of being aware of what is being expected from you becomes quite strong the longer you do it. You're backing yourself up to your most successful moments. You don't want to fail your fans or yourself or diminish in any way. It's extremely important in PRIEST that we're aware of that.
"We genuinely work hard. I'm not talking about working in the coal mines. Those guys really work hard. I'm talking about the mental attitude and the efforts and the hours you put into making good music. That's all very much intact in JUDAS PRIEST."JUDAS PRIEST's 17th studio album, "Redeemer Of Souls", sold around 32,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 6 on The Billboard 200 chart.
SLIPKNOT's COREY TAYLOR: 'We've Always Written Our Own Destiny And Steered Our Own Ship' SLIPKNOT singer Corey Taylor says that the six-year recording break that followed the release of 2008's "All Hope Is Gone" was crucial in allowing the band enough time to deal with the passing of SLIPKNOT bassist Paul Gray while also providing them with the inspiration to make a worthy follow-up effort.
"I think [the break] was important on two levels," Corey told DIY magazine. "One, we needed the time to grieve, and to kinda make peace with the fact that this had happened, and it is what it is. We were all dealing with our own internal battles, basically. A lot of that is on the album. In one way, we just needed time to heal, and on the other hand, we've never done anything that we didn't want to do. Outside forces might've felt like, 'You need to go in and do something', but we've never felt like that. We've always written our own destiny and steered our own ship in a lot of ways. We knew that we weren't gonna be pushed — positively or negatively — into doing something that we didn't feel was time to do. At the same point, we didn't know what story we wanted to tell. By taking that time and allowing ourselves to naturally get to the point where we wanted to go in and make this music was really important, not just for the health of the music, but for the health of the band."
Due on October 21, ".5: The Gray Chapter" has been described as SLIPKNOT's "most focused album yet" and, because of everything the band has been through, their heaviest — both musically and emotionally.
"As you get older, the intensity with which you approach music changes, obviously," Corey told DIY. "But with this album, it wasn't really a challenge because we've never held anything back. We've always tried to go above and beyond, so for us, it was just about making sure that the subject matter of the song — whatever song we were working with — conveyed that emotion."
He continued: "Without the album being a concept album per se, the album really is the story of the last four years for us. Whether it's a song like 'Goodbye', which is really all about the day we were sitting in my house, the day we lost Paul and the deep, deep sadness that comes into it, or there are songs about Paul on there, which are a celebration of his spirit. There are songs about the anger that we all felt, not only towards Paul for losing him — which is a very human thing to feel — but also towards ourselves; about that almost-guilt, the angry guilt of ‘Was there something else I could've done?' You'll keep yourself awake nights thinking about stuff like that. Each song was a piece of the puzzle and a story to tell, and it was all about making sure that we channelled that, didn't filter anything and made sure it was exactly the kind of emotional beat that we wanted to feel."
JOE PERRY Says His Autobiography 'Goes A Little Deeper Than The Usual Sex-Drugs-And-Rock-And-Roll Book' AEROSMITH guitarist Joe Perry spoke about his recently released memoir, "Rocks: My Life In And Out Of Aerosmith", during an appearance on "Good Day Book Club" on FOX-TV's "Good Day New York". You can watch the segment below.
Said Perry: "This book goes a little deeper than the usual sex-drugs-and-rock-and-roll book. I mean, if you read any of these kinds of books or… VH1, actually, had a show for a couple of seasons, that just talked about that kind of a thing, 'Behind The Music', so that part of the story's been told. It's not what it is. I mean, there's no denying we had our ups and downs with that. But it's deeper than that. And I think that one of the things that people will be surprised at is the amount of tension and the amount of effort that went into keeping the band together after we got sober and all during the '80s and '90s when we were, arguably, more successful than we were in the '70s.""Rocks: My Life In And Out Of Aerosmith" came out on October 7 via Simon & Schuster.
The guitarist worked on "Rocks: My Life In And Out Of Aerosmith" with author David Ritz, who has written books with B.B. King, Jerry Wexler and Bettye LaVette.Perry told Billboard.com during a recent interview that he was never into the groupie scene, even at the height of AEROSMITH's success.
"I was always kind of a one-girl guy, and I was always looking for the right girl," he said. "I finally found her [wife Billie Perry]. We have a 30-year marriage, and we're still going strong."
GUS G. Says OZZY OSBOURNE Taught Him A Lesson About Stamina And Energy SROMaginc.com recently conducted an interview with Gus G., well known in rock and metal circles for his work as Ozzy Osbourne's guitarist and as leader of his own band FIREWIND . You can now listen to the chat below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On his upcoming activities with Ozzy:
"We're doing the Ozzfiesta next year in Mexico. So we're gonna do that show over there. And I don't know if there's gonna be more stuff; we'll see. I know [Ozzy is] also gonna go back in the studio with SABBATH. I think probably there's gonna be another Ozzy [album] after the next SABBATH record, or it depends whenever they decide to finish it up. It's not up to me."
On whether Ozzy will ever retire from performing:
"You never know with Ozzy, man. You never know. That's the thing. You can't predict that. I think he's one of those guys like Paul McCartney or Mick Jagger; he'll be doing it until he's 80 or something. I think so.
"I'll tell you what: He taught me a lesson about fuckin' stamina and energy up on that stage. He jumps up and down more than any 20-year-old I've seen. I mean, he's 65 and he's still doing frog jumps. [Laughs]"
On how he approached playing with Ozzy when he first landed the gig in 2009:
"It's one of those gigs… it's that exact gig that you just shit your pants as a guitar player to get that spot. For me, it was the happiest day of my life, and, at the same time, the most nerve-racking day of my life. But you've just gotta rise to the occasion. It's one of those things where I got called up to do this now, so I'd better practice twice as hard. You just have to approach this gig with a lot of respect for the guys that were there before you and just be yourself, basically. I mean, you can't replace those guys — guys like Zakk Wylde or Randy Rhoads or Jake E. Lee— you can't replace them, you can't be them. They are their own guys, they are their own legends. So you've just gotta bring your own thing to the table, but at the same time, you have to respect those songs and play them as they are."
Gus G. has tapped Jeff Scott Soto (TALISMAN, TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA, JOURNEY, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN) to sing for Gus' backing band on his North American West Coast tour, which kicked off on October 15 and concluded on October 19. Joining Gus and Jeff on stage for these dates were Marty O'Brien (bass; TOMMY LEE, WE ARE THE FALLEN, LITA FORD) and Jo Nunez (drums; FIREWIND, NIGHTRAGE).
A special expanded edition of Gus' solo album, "I Am The Fire", will be released in Europe on November 3 (digitally in North America on November 4). This limited CD + DVD digipak will feature four bonus tracks and a 62-minute bonus DVD (including the album's four official video clips so far, plus three live tracks, six guitar tutorials, as well as an EPK and track-by-track commentary).
JIMMY PAGE Didn't Want To Rewrite History With LED ZEPPELIN Remasters Jimmy Page is keeping busy with the recent publication of his photo biography called "Jimmy Page By Jimmy Page", and the ongoing LED ZEPPELIN reissue campaign. Page's deluxe remastering job on the band's fourth and fifth albums, 1971's "Led Zeppelin IV" and "Houses Of The Holy", is coming on October 28.The Pulse Of Radio asked Page if while handling the band's classic masters while upgrading their quality, he was ever tempted to throw them back up on the board and do some minor tweaking to them. "I'm not into re-writing history, I'm just re-presenting," he said. "All of the music that you hear across the companion disc is all basically mixes from the time. I thought it was essential to have mixes from the time, because you've got the mindset, it's showing the mindset of what's being done. To go to the multi-tracks and start remixing, then that's a whole different total ballgame. I wasn't into that. I really wanted something whereby totally reflected what was going on at that point of time — of the time capsule, if you like, of when these things are being recorded. That's what the idea was of this."
The Jimmy Page-remastered editions of "Led Zeppelin IV" and "Houses Of The Holy" will both be released with previously unreleased audio content in a variety of packages — including a limited edition "Super Deluxe" box set.
Earlier this year, LED ZEPPELIN's recent live set, "Celebration Day", recorded during their 2007 London reunion concert, won the Grammy Award for "Best Rock Album" beating out releases from BLACK SABBATH, DAVID BOWIE, QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE, NEIL YOUNG with CRAZY HORSE and KINGS OF LEON.
AVENGED SEVENFOLD Singer M. SHADOWS Talks About Development Of 'Hail To The King: Deathbat' Game (Video) AVENGED SEVENFOLD has finally released its long-in-development mobile role-playing game, "Hail To The King: Deathbat". The game is available on the App Store and Google Play for $4.99.
Video footage of AVENGED SEVENFOLD singer M. Shadows and developer Michael Stragey talking about the development of "Hail To The King: Deathbat" can be seen below.M. Shadows said in a statement: "The process of developing this game has been a new and challenging experience for us as we've worked hard to create a game that we are not only proud of but more importantly, a game that is fun to play. We think we've achieved that and hope you enjoy the game."Shadows told The Pulse Of Radio that the fan response to the game after just one day has been the most gratifying part for him. "Putting this thing out was very scary in a way because it's, you know, a lot of people would want to say, 'Hey, you're a band, don't give me a game, I don't want it,' he said. "And from the reaction today that we're getting from when it's out and just seeing Twitter explode and seeing people playing it online and being excited about it and getting to walk around in our world that we created for them, it's been amazing and just puts a smile on my face. I'm super, super happy with them.""Hail to the King: Deathbat" features classic AVENGED SEVENFOLD tracks along with a new and original score composed by the band.AVENGED SEVENFOLD also has a DVD in the works and will tour Southeast Asia in early 2015.
In August the group reissued its 2003 second album, "Waking The Fallen", in a special edition featuring previously unheard music and demos, new artwork and a documentary on the making of the record.AVENGED SEVENFOLD was touring in support of its sixth album, "Hail To The King", which debuted at No. 1 in August 2013 on the Billboard chart.
HAMMERFALL Partners With NHL Hockey Team MINNESOTA WILD
The NHL team Minnesota Wild has announced that for all its upcoming home games at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota, they will be receiving a special welcome from Swedish heavy metallers HAMMERFALL.
"When we first discovered the song 'Fury Of The Wild' by HAMMERFALL, it was like a gift, because everything about it fits so well to what we try to do for game presentation," states Minnesota Wild team representative Paul Loomis. "The energy, the drive, and, of course, just having 'Wild' in the title makes it a perfect fit. And for the band to go out of their way to make an instrumental version rocks the State Of Hockey!"HAMMERFALL lead singer Joacim Cans comments on the alliance with Minnesota Wild: "It's a tremendous honor to have a team in the NHL use one of our songs as their intro, and Minnesota is a great fit due to the Scandinavian heritage of many of the state's inhabitants.
"We always felt heavy metal and hockey was a great mix, and this is the ultimate proof.
"The State Of Hockey has got new fans in the Templars of Steel!"
The next Minnesota Wild home game is against the Arizona Coyotes on October 23. Watch Swedish defensemen Jonas Brodin and Christian Folin, forward Mikael Granlund of Finland, Minneapolis' own Zach Parise, and the other stars of Minnesota Wild as they take to the ice with "Fury Of The Wild" blasting in the arena.HAMMERFALL's new album, "(r)Evolution", sold around 1,900 copies in the United States in its first week of release.
The band's previous CD, "Infected", opened with around 1,700 units back in 2011. The CD debuted at No. 16 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.HAMMERFALL recently parted ways with longtime drummer Anders Johansson due to "increasing musical differences." He has since been replaced by David Wallin of PAIN. In addition, HAMMERFALL bassist Fredrik Larsson will be on parental leave through March 2015 to take care of his second child, which is due in December. Handling the four-string duties in Fredrik's absence will be none other than HAMMERFALL's former guitar player Stefan Elmgren.
TOOL Singer MAYNARD JAMES KEENAN Sells Hollywood Hills Home For $2.37 Million
According to Los Angeles Times, Maynard James Keenan of TOOL, A PERFECT CIRCLE and PUSCIFIER has sold his house in the Hollywood Hills section of Los Angeles for $2.37 million. The home, which was originally listed for just under $2.8 million, boasts a pool, hot tub and uncluttered view of the famous Hollywood sign. The Mediterranean-style house also has a lot of Middle Eastern touches and a bold use of different colors in every room, reflecting the fact that Keenan once went to school for interior design.
Check out photos of the property at LATimes.com.Keenan now lives in Jerome, Arizona, a former mining village and one-time ghost town that's home these days to artists, writers and other independent types. He told The Pulse Of Radio why it's a fascinating place. "It's a magic spot, and it was a copper mining, gold mining town back in the late 1800s, early 1900s," he said. "And, of course, the mines slowed down and closed up, and a lot of people bailed, and it went down to about a population of 50. It's one of the most active ghost towns in theory. It's been voted a couple of times in different 'ghost' publications as being the most haunted town in the United States."Keenan's Caduceus Cellars wine business is located in unincorporated land in the nearby Sedona area.
Although TOOL was founded in Los Angeles, Keenan has no love for the city — he sang about his hopes that it would fall into the sea in the classic TOOL track "AEnema".
According to the 2010 census, the population of Jerome is 444.
The town was incorporated in 1889 and produced more than one billion dollars in copper, gold and silver mining over the next 70 years.
After the last of its mines closed in 1953, Jerome's population declined to around 50 people by the end of that decade. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1976 and is now a popular tourist destination.
SEBASTIAN BACH On GENE SIMMONS' 'Rock Is Dead' Claim: 'I Get Enough Rock In My Life'
Former SKID ROW singer Sebastian Bach is the latest musician to respond to KISS bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons' recent comment that "rock is dead."Simmonstold Esquire magazine last month — in an interview conducted by his son Nick— that "rock did not die of old age. It was murdered. Some brilliance, somewhere, was going to be expressed and now it won't because it's that much harder to earn a living playing and writing songs. No one will pay you to do it."
Simmons went on to elaborate that as a result of file-sharing and other issues, record label support for rock music was not available like it was when KISS was coming up, concluding, "It's finally dead. Rock is finally dead."
Asked what we can do to keep rock alive, BachIndiePower.com: "Well, you have to ask [Gene] that. I get enough rock in my life. I rock as hard as I can, and then I go to sleep.
"Obviously [the old way of doing business in the music industry doesn't work anymore], but, I mean, that's not like a big news story.
"[Sarcastically] There's this thing called the Internet. It's wrecked everything. I hope it's just a fad.
"Prince says the Internet's just a fad. It's gonna be gone soon."Bach's latest solo album, "Give 'Em Hell", sold around 4,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 72 on The Billboard 200 chart. Bach's previous CD, "Kicking & Screaming", opened with 6,600 units back in October 2011 to land at No. 73.
The singer's 2007 effort, "Angel Down", registered a first-week tally of 6,400 back to enter the chart at No. 190."Give 'Em Hell" was released on April 22 via Frontiers Records.
MACHINE HEAD Members Get Strung Up And Hung For 'Now We Die' Video Shoot
San Francisco Bay Area metallers MACHINE HEAD filmed a video for the song "Now We Die" on October 3 in Oakland, California. The clip is being helmed by director Mike Sloat, who has previously worked with TESTAMENT and HATRIOT.
Photos from the video shoot can be seen below.
"Now We Die" is taken from MACHINE HEAD's new album, "Bloodstone & Diamonds", which will be released on November 10 via Nuclear Blast Entertainment. The CD was produced by MACHINE HEAD frontman Robb Flynn and Juan Urteaga, and like the last seven of eight MACHINE HEAD albums, was masterfully mixed by Colin Richardson. Additional tracking, editing, and mixing was done with Andy Sneap (MEGADETH, EXODUS, TESTAMENT, ARCH ENEMY) and Steve Lagudi.
Regarding the musical direction of "Bloodstone & Diamonds", Flynn told Metal Hammer magazine: "There's definitely a lot of urgency on this record. It's a really heavy record arid there's a dark and evil vibe to a lot of it, but I feel like there's more of a rock vibe in there too. It's stripped down at times, and I like that. I think that sense of urgency has carried over from the demos we did, which were all done very quickly and spontaneously. We tried to keep that spontaneous vibe on the album."
He continued: "At one point we started getting really anal on the tracks and spending tons of time on stuff, and we'd listen back and say, 'You know what? This doesn't have the vibe of the demos.' The demos were so fuckin' frantic, so we changed our mindset and now it's a little bit looser. Some of the guitar takes are basically live. Often, 40 or 50 percent of a song came from a spontaneous, live take and that's killer! It adds energy and makes the songs feel alive."
Regarding the "Bloodstone & Diamonds" album title, Flynn said: "Without getting too philosophical on ya, bloodstone and diamonds represent two of the hardest materials on earth. It is also a lyric from the opening track of the album, 'Now We Die'.
"In many cultures, the bloodstone has been used as an amulet to protect against evil, and is the symbol of justice. Diamonds are the hardest natural material on earth (which is how we feel about our music), and it also represents the diamond logo I drew 22 years ago (in my wife's apartment on Dover St. in Oakland) that has become the symbol for the band."
NEW YORK (AP) — Actors often complain about short rehearsal times, but some of entertainment's biggest names — including Melanie Griffith, Amanda Seyfried, Uzo Aduba, Peter Dinklage, Nina Dobrev and Pablo Schreiber — are about to have virtually none.
NEW YORK (AP) — At his Fashion Week runway show in September, Oscar de la Renta sat in his usual spot: in a chair right inside the wings, where he could carefully inspect each model just as she was about to emerge in one of his sumptuous, impeccably constructed designs.
Turner channels removed from Dish amid pact spat
Channels such as Cartoon Network and CNN are no longer part of Dish's programming lineup as a deadline has passed for the satellite TV provider and Turner Broadcasting to renew their distribution agreement. ...
NEW YORK (AP) — Louis Armstrong sometimes referred to Jack Bradley as his "white son," inviting him to private rehearsals, recording sessions, on the road, his dressing room and home. Bradley had unrestricted access to his hero for 12 years, documenting him through thousands of photographs and saving Armstrong's sound recordings, fan letters — and even handkerchiefs.