Archive for Alice Cooper

Paradise Lost announce exclusive show in Roman theatre

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on 14th March 2014 by Nico Davidson

Yorkshire Gothic metal lords Paradise Lost have announced an exclusive show to take place on 20th Spetember this year at Plovdiv, Bulgaria in its magnificent Roman theatre. For this special one off event, the band will be joined by he renowned Plovdiv Philharmonic Orchestra who were founded nearly 70 years ago and are made up of over 100 highly qualified musicians. The orchestra has its roots in the hundred year old orchestral tradition in Plovdiv and over the years has launched the careers of many world-famous conductors.

The prestigious evening will be promoted by Bulgaria’s independent radio station Radio Tangra Mega Rock and orchestrated by conductor Levon Manukyan who wrote the first metal ballet and is the founder of the Levon Manukyan Collegium Musicum orchestra. During his career Levon has previously given the classical treatment to rock and metal works by Marilyn Manson, Alice Cooper, Dream Theater, AC/DC, Evanescence, Guns’n’Roses, Kiss, Led Zeppelin, Nirvana and Judas Priest, and worked with world-famous soloists including ex-Nightwish vocalist Tarja Turunen.

This event will mark a key milestone in Paradise Lost’s, already esteemed, career as they make their first ever performance accompanied by a full live orchestra.

Paradise Lost online:

http://paradiselost.co.uk
http://facebook.com/paradiselostofficial

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Motley Crue announce final tour, band sign cessation of touring agreement

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on 29th January 2014 by Nico Davidson

After a period together that has spanned more than three decades, Motley Crue announced yesterday The Final Tour and cemented the band’s ultimate retirement. The announcement was solidified when the band signed a formal Cessation Of Touring Agreement, effective at the end of 2015, in front of global media in Los Angeles yesterday.

With over 80 million albums sold, Motley Crue has sold out countless tours across the globe and spawned more than 2,500 Motley Crue branded items sold in over 30 countries. Motley Crue has proven they know how to make a lasting impression and this tour will be no different; Fans can expect to hear all the band’s hits and look forward to mind-blowing, unparalleled live production. Bassist Nikki Six explains:

When it comes to putting together a new show we always push the envelope and that’s part of Motley Crue’s legacy. As far as letting on to what we’re doing, that would be like finding out what you’re getting for Christmas before you open the presents.  We think in an age of too much information, we’d like to keep some surprises close to our chest until we launch the Final Tour.

The Final Tour presented by Dodge and produced by Live Nation will kick off in North America on 2nd July in Grand Rapids, MI and reach 72 markets before hitting international territories in 2015. To Live Nation Motley Crue tours are not only box office successes but artistically their shows have set the bar for production and entertainment value. Rick Franks, Live nation’s Regional President of North America Concerts comments:

There’s no arguing that Motley Crue have been and always will be the definitive bad boys of rock and roll. But behind all those notorious stories is a legendary rock band that has revolutionized heavy metal and created some of the biggest hits in music history.  They are a hugely successful global brand and a touring powerhouse.   Everyone at Live Nation has a tremendous amount of respect for these hard working and extremely talented gentlemen.   The music industry will never have another Motley Crue.

Fans can also look forward to Very Special Guest Alice Cooper joining Motley Crue for an incredible package – Alice invented the genre and Motley Crue came along to beef it up. Alice Cooper comments:

Real hard rock bands are hard to find these days, Motley has always gone on stage with one attitude and that’s to blow the audience away.  That’s exactly how we do it.  Putting Motley Crue and Alice Cooper together is going to be just what this summer really NEEDS.  We’re going to go out there and tear it up, and I can’t wait to see Motley on stage.  Motley Crue and Alice Cooper – A match made in… Armageddon?

As documented in the Cessation Of Touring Agreement the band signed at the press conference today, the band will not tour after this Final Tour.  Band Attorney, Doug Mark of Mark Music & Media Law, explains:

Other bands have split up over rancor or the inability of people to get along, but this is mutual among all four original members and a peaceful decision to move on to other endeavors and to confirm it with a binding agreement.

Vince Neil, Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee, and Mick Mars will go their separate ways after the lengthy 2-year touring cycle.  Drummer Tommy Lee explains:

Everything must come to an end!! We always had a vision of going out with a big fucking bang and not playing county fairs and clubs with 1 or 2 original band members! Our job here is done!!!

Of the band’s tumultuous history, guitarist Mick Mars adds:

(It has been) more drama than ‘GeneralHospital’ – it keeps ‘em watchin’ and they keep comin’ back.

Vocalist Vince Neil says of the Finality of the tour:

I’ll miss playing with the guys but I won’t quit playing rock and roll!! I feel there are a lot of great opportunities and exciting projects after Motley.

The Final Tour will coincide with the film made from Motley Crue’s NY Times Best-Selling book The Dirt. Jeff Tremaine (Bad Grandpa) has signed on to direct the opus that is set to debut in cinemas globally in 2015, coinciding with The Final Tour. The Dirt is not only one of the best selling rock books of all time but also one of the greatest rock books of all time because of its brutal honesty, its unique voice, its multiple perspectives on the same events and its first-person inclusion of all members of the same band. Most rock memoirs are salacious mud-slinging accounts of a single person and Motley Crue was adamant to include the perspectives of all four of its members. Tremaine’s intention is to make, not just a great movie about a band, but a great movie about four misfits who, despite themselves and everyone else, band together to overcome the odds and change the history of Rock & Roll. Tremaine comments:

The Dirt’ is a movie I’ve wanted to make ever since I read the book in 2002, I relate to the story on so many levels; my whole professional career has been about boys behaving badly, so I have a real connection to the material. It’s awesome to be working with the band at such an exciting time in Motley Crue’s history.

The film will be produced by the members of Motley Crue, Rick Yorn, Julie Yorn, Erik Olsen and 10th Street Entertainment.

Big Machine Records, home to Country Superstars such as Taylor Swift and Tim McGraw has teamed up in a joint venture with Motley Records and Eleven Seven Music for the summer 2014 release of a Country Music Tribute To Motley Crue.  Big Machine founder and CEO, Scott Borchetta, is among the legion of Country Music fans who love Motley Crue.  The country tribute album will show off the band’s quality songwriting with these fresh takes on their classic hit songs.  Among the artists already confirmed to be featured on the country tribute album is Florida Georgia Line. Borchetta says of the collaboration:

I have been a not-so-secret Crue fan from the beginning.  When manager Chris Nilsson called with the idea for a tribute album on Big Machine Records it was an immediate ‘yes’ from me!  Our album will highlight just how great the Motley Crue song catalog is.  At the end of the day, that’s what will stand the test of time.

Motley Crue Fan Club members will get the exclusive first crack at tickets and VIP Packages, via a unique code, beginning on Wednesday 29th January starting at 10am local time.  VIP ticket packages will be made available to the general public on Thursday 30th January at 10am local time.  The general public ticket on-sale for most shows is Friday 31st January.  All tickets and packages can be obtained via TicketMaster.com, LiveNation  , or via MotleyVIP.com.

UK dates will be announced later this year.

Motley Crue online:

http://motley.com
http://facebook.com/motleycrue
http://twitter.com/motleycrue

 

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Guitar extraordinaire Orianthi announces UK headline show in London

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 4th June 2013 by Nico Davidson

Platinum-selling solo artist and iconic guitarist Orianthi has announced a one-off headline show at London’s 100 Club on 7th August 2013. Tickets are available at this location.

Orianthi’s new album, Heaven In This Hell, produced by Dave Stewart, is available now via Spinefarm Records and Robo Records.

Furthermore, Orianthi will continue as a key member of Alice Cooper’s band for what is expected to be Mr Cooper’s sole UK appearance of 2013 – a headline outing at Cropredy Festival in Oxfordshire. Cropredy is an annual event launched by UK folk legends Fairport Convention back in 1980; this year it runs from 8th – 10th August, with Alice Cooper topping the bill on the 8th.

Having been a part of Alice Cooper’s live set-up since August 2011, completing two world tours in this role, Orianthi is used to trading musical blows with this true master of horror!

Orianthi online:

https://www.facebook.com/Orianthi
http://twitter.com/Orianthi

 

Black Star Riders discuss signing to Nuclear Blast

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on 16th May 2013 by Nico Davidson

Black Star Riders, the new band featuring Thin Lizzy members Ricky Warwick, Damon Johnson, Scott Gorham and Marco Mendoza together with drummer Jimmy DeGrasso (Alice Cooper/Megadeth), have announced All Hell Breaks Loose as the title of their debut album on Nuclear Blast Entertainment recently and in anticipation of the release, Nuclear Blast sat Scott Gorham and Ricky Warwick in front of a camera to ask them more about the signing. Find out why the band ended up choosing Nuclear Blast to release their new album All Hell Breaks Loose, below:

Black Star Riders online:
facebook.com/BLACKSTARRIDERSOFFICIAL
BLACKSTARRIDERS.com
twitter.com/BLACKSTARRIDERS

 

Black Star Riders, featuring Thin Lizzy members, announce UK tour dates

Posted in Featured, News with tags , , , , , , , on 24th April 2013 by Nico Davidson

Black Star Riders, the new and exciting band featuring Thin Lizzy members Ricky Warwick, Damon Johnson, Scott Gorham and Marco Mendoza together with drummer Jimmy DeGrasso (Alice Cooper, Megadeth), have announced their first UK headline tour. The tour will support the release of their debut album All Hell Breaks Loose which will be released in the UK through on Nuclear Blast on the 27th May 2013.

The band already released their debut single Bound For Glory, which was premiered on BBC Radio 2 and can be listened to below.

The band are set to take the UK and Ireland by storm on their 2013 tour, playing most of the debut album and some Thin Lizzy classics. Confirmed headline and festival appearances for Black Star Riders in 2013 include the below dates (with loads more to be announced):

Friday 22nd Nov             O2 Academy, Bournemouth
Saturday 23rd Nov          O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London
Monday 25th Nov           O2 Academy, Bristol
Tuesday 26th Nov           Junction, Cambridge
Wednesday 27th Nov      UEA, Norwich
Friday 29th Nov              Hard Rock Hell 6, Wales – FESTIVAL CO-HEADLINE
Saturday 30th Nov          Wulfrun Hall, Wolverhampton
Sunday 1st Dec              Solus/University, Cardiff
Monday 2nd Dec            O2 Academy, Oxford
Thursday 5th Dec           Ironworks, Inverness
Friday 6th Dec                Picturehouse, Edinburgh
Saturday 7th Dec            O2 Academy, Newcastle
Sunday 8th Dec              O2 Academy, Leeds
Tuesday 10th Dec           The Assembly Rooms, Leamington Spa
Thursday 12th Dec          Rock City, Nottingham
Friday 13th Dec              Ritz, Manchester
Saturday 14th Dec          Academy, Dublin, EIRE

Tickets for headline shows are priced from £22.50 to £25.00 London (subject to booking fees) and Dublin is priced at 25 euros. Tickets go on general sale at 9am on Thursday 2nd May, with tickets for the London show available from Live Nation or Ticket Master.

VIP Packages available for all shows – including meet and greet and special acoustic performance – available from April 29th via the VIP package link at the band’s official website. Special Guests will be announced at a later date. The album will be released as a standard CD and also as a special edition digi-pak featuring a bonus track Right To Be Wrong and a Making of DVD.

A 24-minute compilation of behind-the-scenes video reports from the band’s studio time in Los Angeles can be viewed on below:

Black Star Riders online:

www.facebook.com/BLACKSTARRIDERSOFFICIAL
www.BLACKSTARRIDERS.com
Twitter.com/BLACKSTARRIDERS

 

Rival Sons announce UK tour

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 16th January 2013 by Nico Davidson

After a successful 2012, including being voted  Planet Rock’s New Band of the Year, scooping up Breakthrough Artist at last year’s Classic Rock awards, and releasing a top 20 album, Rival Sons return to the UK this April, including dates at O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire and Cardiff Solus. Tickets are on sale now priced at £12.50 (Cardiff) and £14 (London) (subject to booking fee) from this location or from TicketMaster.

Rival Sons are a raucous, maximum-blues-infused, rock ‘n’ roll band, who explode with the rhythm and thrill of some of the greatest rock acts of all time. From their 2011 album Pressure & Time to last year’s breakthrough Head Down the strength of their live performances has gained the band major attention everywhere. Recent accolades include, a stint opening up for Guns ‘n’ Roses last year, plus legends like Judas Priest, AC/DC and Alice Cooper, and playing the likes of Download, Rock Am Ring, Sonisphere, T in the Park, to name a few.

Rival Sons’ intense work agenda (with an aim to release an album a year), plus their gruelling live schedule, have won the band a reputation for hard-graft. In the studio, the band commits themselves to creating an experience that closely matches the attitude and excitement of their live performance. Right off a four week stint on the road, Rival Sons wrote, recorded, and mixed the album in just twenty days; ensuring a rawness for both the listener and the band.

In October 2012, Rival Sons finished up their UK leg of the sold out “Head Down” tour with a fantastic show at the Electric Ballroom, introduced on stage by legendary presenter Bob Harris, and with Jimmy Page in the audience.

Rival Sons – April UK Tour

Tues 9             London, UK – Shepherds Bush Empire

Wed 10             Cardiff, UK – Solus

Thurs 11            Birmingham, UK – Institute

Sat 13               Leeds, UK – Met. University

Sun 14             Edinburgh, UK – Liquid rooms

Mon 15             Preston, UK – 53 Degrees

Tues 16             Cambridge, UK – Junction

 

Shining release cover of Alice Cooper classic

Posted in News with tags , , , , on 28th November 2012 by Nico Davidson

Sweden’s Shining – featuring Niklas Kvarforth, who is considered to be one of metal’s most controversial artists – have uploaded to soundcloud.com their cover of the Alice Cooper classic, Prince Of Darkness.

You can listen to it here.

Shining’s eighth studio album, Redefining Darkness, released via Spinefarm Records, is out now.

Track-listing:

1.       Du, Mitt Konstverk

2.       The Ghastly Silence

3.       Han Som Hatar Människan

4.       Hail Darkness Hail

5.       Det Stora Grå

6.       For The God Below

Watch the video for Tillsammans Är Vi Allt from the seventh full-length Shining album, VII / Född Förlorare below.

UK shows are being planned for 2013.

Spinefarm expand street team plus free goodies

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on 19th October 2012 by Nico Davidson

Our good friends over at Spinefarm Records (Home to bands such as Ensiferum, Jettblack and many more) are expanding their street team. Amongst receiving stuff like free tickets to Spinefarm gigs, meet and greet opportunities, etc aren’t enough to make you wanna join the Spinefarm street team, we’ve got some good news for you: Spinefarm will randomly select ten new sign-ups to receive the following:

Redlight King – Something For The Pain (Album)

Tarja – What Lies Beneath (Album)

Five Finger Death Punch – American Capitalist (Album)

Jettblack – Raining Rock (Album)

Ensiferum – Unsung heroes (Album)

A Spinefarm poster

Alice Cooper face paint

Of course, even if you don’t win the stuff above, when you sign up to the Spinefarm street team, you’ll still be in for a chance at free tickets to Spinefarm gigs, meet and greet sessions with your favourite Spinefarm bands and a lot more. So, to sign up, just click here. Or here. Or here.

 

Bloodstock Open Air 2012 Review

Posted in Festival, Live with tags , , , , , , , on 21st August 2012 by Hammi

Bloodstock Open Air Festival 2012 [Behemoth, Machine Head, Alice Cooper & more]
Catton Hall, Derbyshire
9th-12th August, 2012

So, another year, another Bloodstock. This year was probably one of the most controversial for a good number of years; mainly based around line up. Not only was there a massive furore over the choice of Machine Head as Saturday’s headliners, there was also much discussion of the line up, in general, being poor. Swathes of apparent regulars made it clear that the line up meant they were not purchasing tickets. This didn’t affect Bloodstock in any way, mind. There were over 11,000 people in attendance- the biggest number to date- and the organisers were able to enjoy the fact that their VIP packages totally sold out, and there were not many regular passes left by the time the weekend came around. This year’s Bloodstock was also notable for another, more special reason. Over the course of the weekend, many of the live performances were streamed world wide for the first time ever, and this decision proved to be a resounding success; over 200,000 people across the globe tuned in to watch live footage of the festival throughout the duration of the weekend. In terms of ticket sales, bums on seats and world domination, Bloodstock outdid themselves this year. But what of the festival itself?

Friday started off with a ridiculous heat wave. The fields of Catton Hall overflowed with sweaty, melting metal heads, most of them sweltering in the commonly worn uniform of black band shirt and jeans or camouflage trousers. But this sudden appearance by the sun did not stop them from turning out in multitudes to check out all three stages (four, if we count the Jagermeister Truck acoustic stage). With a cold one in my hand (one of 60+ real cask ales and ciders on sale in the Serpent’s Lair; the extra £100 odd was worth it just for that selection) I trudged to the main stage to enjoy the first few bands. Reading’s Malefice started proceedings with a valiant performance, filled with power and energy and determined to make a name for themselves. These newcomers pulled in a respectable crowd for the first slot of the day, and in my opinion started the festival off well. Followers Freedom Call kept up the energy with forty minutes of pure, cheesy German power metal, and I’m not ashamed to report that it was glorious. Their set was certainly a ‘happy metal party’ and they got the crowd jumping along to most of their songs. With their upbeat melodies and cheerful yet clumsy, Olympics centred banter, almost everyone watching their set had a stupid grin on their faces by their closer. Grand Magus were predictably epic, and the freshness of their material and stage presence makes it easy to forgot how long they have been around for. The Swedish stalwarts showed how thumping heavy metal is meant to be done.

Unfortunately for myself, I was unable to see most of the second half of Moonsorrow’s set as I quickly fell ill with what I now recognise as heatstroke, but the first half I did see was fantastic. They played a good selection of their material, and managed to put on a great performance, despite the fact that much of the crowd was flagging in the somewhat unexpected heat by this point. Their set was also far too short, especially considering most of their songs hit the nine minute mark, and it can only be hoped that they don’t leave it too long til they tour the UK as headliners. I have it on good authority, thanks to my temporary co-correspondent Joe (my brother) that Iced Earth absolutely slayed it. In three words, they were pounding, soaring and epic. The screams of ‘Iced Fucking Earth’ that echoed around the arena barely needed any encouragement from the band themselves, and they left the crowds begging for more. In complete contrast, and in a somewhat controversial claim, Joe felt that Sepultura were a massive disappointment. Clumsy and clunky, they played a set that didn’t contain enough new stuff to be purely Derrick Green era-stuff, nor enough classics to be a ‘classic Sepultura’ show, even despite the inclusion of songs such as ‘Refuse/Resist’ and ‘Roots’. I was back to the arena in time for Dio’s Disciples, the special tribute set up in memory of the late, great Ronnie James Dio, metal legend and namesake of Bloodstock’s main stage. And what a tribute it was. Each and every member of the band put their heart and soul into the performance, and it showed. Nearly every member of the band was almost in tears during their set, and they gave rousing renditions of some of Dio’s best known songs, including ‘Holy Diver’, ‘Stargazer’ and ‘Rainbow in the Dark’. We still love you, Ronnie. Whilst Dio’s Disciples got all emotional on the main stage, mention must be made of Hull’s Infernal Creation, who tore up the New Blood stage in the same slot. Bastard, Neiphrobous and Sin were joined by Cryptic Age’s Tom Keeley for the performance, due to bassist Beleth’s recent ill health (swift recovery, dude!) and they laid down their black metal credentials for all to see. Neiphrobous had the disappointingly small crowd in the palm of his outstretched claw, and whilst they deserved to pull a far greater number of people, those that were in attendance were treated to a thirty minute long aural assault of the highest calibre. A fantastic performance by a brutal underground band, deserving of greater success.

The atmosphere in the main arena grew noticeably chillier during the set up for Watain, and it wasn’t just the onset of the evening. There was almost as much of a buzz for these guys as there was for Friday headliners Behemoth. When asked about who they were here to see, countless people answered ‘Fucking Watain!’. All inverted crosses, flaming sigils and fire, Watain were truly a spectacle. Frontman Erik Danielsson (E) soaked the crowd- and pre-prepared, poncho and cagoule wearing security- with blood from a silver chalice, as ominous red lights zoomed over the crowd. They delivered their special blend of hauntingly beautiful and brutal black metal to the masses assembled in the fields of Catton Hall. Their stage show was uncompromising, being the masters of the theatrical and experts in creating an atmosphere both electric and somewhat unsettling. I managed to grab E for a quick chat on Saturday evening, and he summed their performance up in a concise way:

            I think it was very beautiful, it was during the sunset, and the sun came down in a very fitting way I would say. As far as Bloodstock goes, it’s another one of those places where two-leggers gather in the same place. I have an extremely hard time dealing with that, and it’s getting to the point of nausea, but at the same time it’s a good place.

All hail the black priests of metal!

After being suitably roused into a black, unholy frenzy, headliners Behemoth materialised on the stage in a flash of blue light and fog like a furious quartet of Cenobites. It is so, SO good to be finally writing a review of a performance by Behemoth at Bloodstock, and just as good to see Nergal, victorious in his battle with leukaemia, absolutely ripping Bloodstock a new one. The truck full of pyro they commissioned to trek across Europe from Poland meant that they were fully able to flex their blackened muscles and deliver a full Behemoth show to the baying crowds. Ferocious and uncompromising, they delivered a spectacle that will stay in the minds of all those assembled for a long time to come. On the visual front, they did not disappoint. Burning crosses, hooded monks, and a brilliantly clever use of fog and lighting to create a massive, Ronnie James Dio stage sized Polish flag, they looked spectacular. They sounded spectacular, too. With a set list that included fearsome renditions of songs old and new, including my personal highlights ‘Christians to the Lions’ and ‘Slaves to Serve’, Nergal, Orion, Inferno and Seth were the masters of the hordes as Friday evening closed in an infernal frenzy of blackened death metal. Behemoth fucking ruled.

On to Saturday, then, and after catching the end of what proved to be an energetic set by Benediction, on came ZP Theart of ex-Dragonforce fame, and his new band IamI. Theart had a lot to prove today, and even though his distinctive vocals strained a little at times, their raw sort of power metal worked quite well. He obviously loved being on the stage, and whilst it has to be said that their material bordered on repetitive, they gave a commendable performance. Following the power metal was Taiwan’s ChthoniC, who were, in a word, brilliant. They brought their folk-inspired, mythologically-powered black metal to the assembled crowds and performed beautifully. Freddy Lim, erhu in hand, made firm friends with the crowd and inspired an anti-Chinese roar of ‘Taiwan! Taiwan!’ to erupt among the arena. Even though many of them may not have understood the significance of Lim’s impassioned tirade against the Chinese occupation of Taiwan, they sympathised with ‘Chinese Taipei’ and were intensely receptive to the band’s atmospheric sound. The less said about Mayhem, the better. I was intensely disappointed with their lack of performance and the overall sloppy state of their set. Even Attila was boring. They came onto the stage and seemed to leave again soon after, without much fuss. So very anti-climactic. In contrast, the newly reformed Sanctuary were a surprising success. Even though their reformation will probably be at the expense of the fantastic Nevermore, it’s good to see Sanctuary back together. They really entertained the crowd with an energetic and upbeat set, satisfying both old and new fans. One band that personally surprised me were Hatebreed. I did not expect to enjoy the Connecticut hardcore maniacs, but I really did. They gave a performance full of energy and proved themselves to be very proficient at what they do. With Hatebreed, circle pits were always guaranteed but what was good to see was that the pits, orchestrated by frontman Jamey Jasta with safety on his mind, were instructed to help anyone that fell back up to their feet. Hatebreed are a brotherhood, and no one gets left behind or forgotten, as was evident with their touching dedication to the recently fallen, including the Rev, Dimebag, Dio and Paul Gray. Due to other commitments, I wasn’t able to catch much of Testament’s set, but the view from Joe was that they were sick. They played a good selection of old and new and more than satisfied the crowds.

Saturday’s controversial headliners Machine Head came onstage will everything bared and a mentality of proving to everyone present that they deserved to be there. They were there for their fans, but also for every single person who would have rather seen someone else take their place. In my opinion, they more than deserved that headline slot, and proved so with a visceral, rib shaking performance. Clearly humbled and in awe of Bloodstock as a whole, Machine Head plunged into their set with no holds barred. They spattered their set with a good selection of tunes, including fan favourites ‘Imperium’ and ‘Darkness Within’. As had been advertised since their announcement, they also played the 5 ‘Burn My Eyes’ tracks that had been voted for by the fans, in honour of the 20th anniversary of the first live show they ever played, in Mike Scum’s house, for a ‘destroy the house’ kegger party. Fantastic. The tracks chosen- ‘Death Church’, ‘A Thousand Lies’, ‘Blood for Blood’, ‘Block’ and ‘Davidian’- were received with an almost rabid response; a personal highlight was definitely ‘Block’, a track that absolutely slayed the crowd with its chugging intensity. Robb Flynn also proved that his reputation as one of the ‘nice guys’ of metal is more than apt, with a touchingly heartfelt speech about the true, accepting spirit of metal and how stoked he was to be playing on the stage with so many of his metal brothers in attendance. He also showed how much of an expert he is at creating a rapport with the crowd, and even instigated some sort of epic battle between Wolverine and Banana-man. Machine Head’s headliner slot will go down in history as one of the most divisive but brutal sets in Bloodstock history.

There were a number of fantastic performances on both the S.O.P.H.I.E. and New Blood stages on Saturday as well. Witch Sorrow and Winterfylleth both put on fantastic performances; Witch Sorrow’s sludgey, droney doom metal shaking the bowels of all those cooped up in the sweaty, beer soaked S.O.P.H.I.E. tent, and Winterfylleth delivered a set full of competent, slick black metal. But the day has to be given to the mighty Orange Goblin. The fact that the crowd literally spilled out of the tent and created lines at least seven men deep as a huge number of people struggled to watch them can probably attest to the Goblin’s strength on Saturday night. Sludgey, sleazy and soaked in booze and weed, the Goblin were on form and should have been on the main stage. However, the underdog status of the second stage suited them well. Their performance was painfully effortless, and they delivered a strong, sublime set, filling the S.O.P.H.I.E. tent to the rafters with stoner madness. There were also strong performances over at the New Blood stage. Newcastle’s Reflection in Exile were brilliant, and better than many of the bands on the main and S.O.P.H.I.E. stages. Dare I say that they were better than Mayhem? Regardless, they gave their all in the performance and were rewarded with the total attention of a sizeable crowd, pulled into the New Blood stage and away from main stagers Hatebreed. Reflection in Exile are worth watching out for. Saturday’s New Blood headliners, Manchester’s Gone Til Winter, served up a slice of brilliant, dark power metal. Stealing a good size crowd in from Testament- though they deserved many, many more- they performed with their hearts on their sleeves. Vocalist  Talena is a fantastic front woman, with an easy and likeable demeanour and a good amount of stage presence. Their set list included a number of tasters from their upcoming debut LP, Hiding From The Sun. I wish them every success in the future; and good luck to Talena on the forthcoming birth of her baby!

The final day of Bloodstock 2012 dawned with a brilliant performance from epic Canadian metallers Kobra And The Lotus. I think it’s safe to say that Kobra Paige and her troupe of heavy metal warriors won over a new legion of fans on Sunday. And holy hell, can Kobra Paige sing! KATL were a fantastic way to start the final day of BOA, and served up a delightful portion of soaring, traditional heavy metal. Corrosion of Conformity were much better than I thought they would be. I didn’t expect their groovy, sludge metal to be as good as it was, but I was pleasantly surprised. Good set, despite the need for a bass amp half way through! All that can really be said about Nile is that they were fucking brutal. They played a good mix of their stuff, from older material to brand new tracks. My personal highlights were the brutal Sacrifice Unto Sobek, Execration Text and Lashed To The Slave Stick. Their mystical, Egyptological, brutal death metal crushed the arena, and their show was so intensely amazing that it didn’t even matter that the heavens opened part way through. It would be hard for any band to follow such a flawless set, but it could have proven disastrous for Black Dahlia Murder. So many people didn’t want them to be here, and so BDM had an awful lot to prove. But prove it they did. By the end, the crowd had grown into a respectable size and enjoyed their unapologetic brand of death metal mayhem. There were two people in the crowd who certainly enjoyed their set, as their doggy style adventures proved. I think BDM proved many of the haters wrong, and showed that they deserve their place on the line up as much as anyone else. I also dearly hope that Brian Eschbach got his cheesy chips with gravy. As was expected, Bloodstock favourites Evile played to an incredibly enthusiastic crowd and did not disappoint. Even though they seemed endearingly puzzled at the fact that this year saw their fourth year on the line up, they clearly loved being back on the main stage, as did the crowd. The Huddersfield troupe performed a really strong set, including the rabidly received ‘Cult’. Metal underdogs Anvil gave a roaringly successful, and somewhat poignant, performance. They were clearly enthused to just still be performing, and were well received. The success of their story was evident by the number of Anvil patches that could be seen on denim and leather jackets throughout the arena, standing side by side with big names such as Judas Priest, Megadeth and Iron Maiden. Well done, Anvil!

Goth/doom veterans Paradise Lost seemed to delight the crowds with a competent set that entertained whilst being slightly sloppy. Their set list spanned their whole career fairly well, so there was guaranteed to be something there for everyone. From a selection that included game changing album Draconian Times, Nick Holmes and his gloomy troupe played reasonably well, and finished with crowd pleaser Say Just Words. Paradise Lost could have been so much better, but with all said and done they were more than satisfactory. A band that did not disappoint was 2008 headliners and ‘special guests’ Dimmu Borgir. I’m not ashamed to say that Dimmu were probably one of the bands I was looking forward to the most all weekend, and they were astounding. They returned to the main stage with a triumphant performance, full of characteristic bombast and malignantly beautiful orchestrations, and oozing with dark charisma. They had the crowd lapping up every single note and ravenously devouring each morsel proffered, from ‘Gateways’ and ‘Dimmu Borgir’ to ‘Puritania’ and ‘Progenies of the Great Apocalypse’, with surprise appearances from ‘Vredesbyrd’ and closer ‘Mourning Palace’. It’s good to see that they have not lost any of the atmosphere brought by ICS Vortex’s clean vocals; in fact, the majestic choral recording created sweeping, epic atmosphere that melted with the brutal nature of the rest of the performance perfectly. A darkly beautiful, flawless set from one of the most professional and well-oiled bands in the industry.

What can I say about Sunday night headliner Alice Cooper? It’s been just over a week since I returned from BOA and I’m still getting over the spectacle of it all. Alice is 64 years old, and he wiped the floor with most of the other people who had been up on that stage before him. He has still got exactly what it is that made everyone fall in love with him back in the seventies, and I hope he never loses it, because he is fantastic. The anticipation started to build from the moment the vast, opaque banner was pulled up in front of the stage, obscuring the set up and preparations underway behind it, and the time it took to get the stage ready to be Coop’d seemed to fly by. The atmosphere in the arena, as Vincent Price boomed out from the speakers, was electrifying with excitement. Everyone was shoulder to shoulder as people squeezed in, trying to get the best view possible of what was to come. And what did come? A performance that showed everyone exactly how it is done. Starting with ‘Black Widow’, the man himself appeared atop a vast, cobwebbed lectern, resplendent in his spider suit, every single audience member dancing on his hands like puppets. A showman to the very end, Alice proceeded to entertain and beguile for an hour and a half that was stuffed with hits, favourites and rare titbits. I can honestly say that Cooper’s set was the best thing I have ever seen. Unlike the normal, pared down festival performances many bands deliver, Alice Cooper put on a full show, complete with guillotine, skewered paparazzo, pyrotechnics, dead dolls and a giant, guitarist chasing Frankenstein’s monster. I don’t think it would be possible for me to choose a favourite track, but the moment Alice donned a white lab coat and red, elbow length gloves during the opening chords of ‘Feed My Frankenstein’, I knew that Bloodstock 2012 had turned into an ‘I was there’ event. I was there to see Alice Cooper conquer, and prove that he is at the absolute pinnacle of rock showmanship. Almost every single band on the line up, from Watain and Dimmu Borgir to Machine Head and Black Dahlia Murder owe something to Cooper. Without Cooper, the rock concert as we know it would not exist. Theatricality and performance in concert would not exist. Without Cooper, the metal world would be a much less colourful place. Catton Hall turned into a cacophony of noise as every person present hoarsely shouted along with ‘Poison’, ‘Hey Stoopid’ and ‘No More Mr Nice Guy’, and whooped with delight as the unmistakable opening riff for ‘School’s Out’ rang out through the arena. Alice finished his set by striding onto the stage, Union Jack in hand, for a fittingly ferocious ‘(I wanna be) Elected’. Alice Cooper was absolutely phenomenal, and I will remember the feeling I got when I was watching him, a man I have looked up to and admired since I was seven years old and first heard ‘Poison’, for the rest of my life.

Bloodstock 2012 was an incredible achievement, crushing records and paying homage to some of the greatest names in modern metal. I’ll see you in 2013.

Hannah O’Flanagan, 2012

Bloodshot Dawn release video for free single Godless

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 1st August 2012 by Nico Davidson

Bloodshot Dawn Photo noLogoUK Death Thrashers Bloodshot Dawn have released there second video Godless from the debut 2012 self titled release. This video has been released in there lead up to there second appearance at the UK’s biggest metal fest: Bloodstock Open Air on August 9th 2012.

You can download “Godless” for free from the band’s Bandcamp!

The band have now begun pre-production on Album number 2 currently unnamed with no date of released planned, they will continue to tour throughout the Autumn and Winter, with tours planned in the UK, Japan, India and Western Europe expect to see them obliterating a venue near you soon!

www.BloodshotDawn.Bandcamp.com
www.YouTube.com/BloodshotdawnUK
www.Facebook.com/BloodshotDawn
www.BloodshotDawn.Bigcartel.com
www.BloodshotDawn.co.uk – *Coming Soon*

Bloodstock and the Perils of Mainstream Metal

Posted in Misc. with tags , , , on 12th June 2012 by Hammi

In two months, thousands of hairy, bearded, black- and camo-clad metalheads will make their way across the country, by train, coach, motorbike or car, and descend upon a picturesque part of Derbyshire for the eleventh Bloodstock Festival. After a soggy Download this weekend past, they’ll be hoping for dry weather and clear skies under which to enjoy gallons of beer and three days of non-stop metal. Taking place this year from the 9th-12th of August, Bloodstock promises to be four nights of memorable performances, spanning (as usual) three stages and including acts from unsigned upstarts Infernal Creation right through to legendary shock rocker Alice Cooper. I’ll be going, and I’m personally looking forward to most of the bands on offer, but there are a few I’m not particularly keen on. One act is dividing the fans, however, and in my opinion have been one of the most controversial bookings in Bloodstock’s 11 year history.

Announced only a week ago, Machine Head’s booking as the Saturday night headliner has caused a lot of controversy. Shrouded in ‘secrecy’, but leaked in an interview with Terrorizer magazine, Bloodstock’s organisers have been calling Machine Head one of the most ‘prestigous’ acts they’ve ever managed to acquire, and even though many people have been complaining about this and questioning Machine Head’s Bloodstock pedigree, it’s actually quite accurate to call Machine Head prestigous. For their particular, Bay-Area thrash influenced brand of heavy metal, and out of the number of bands that formed in the early 90′s, they are definitely one of the most successful and long-standing. Machine Head have been producing music for over 20 years. It’s no fluke that they have sold almost two and a half million albums since their debut, Burn My Eyes, in 1994. They have even been given a nod by those over at the Grammy awards. This, I guess, is why many people are complaining. Machine Head are mainstream, you know? They’re the kind of band that 13 year-old wannabes listen to when they’re just getting into metal. They’re heavy enough to feel exciting and dangerous to a young kid, but nowhere near as extreme as a number of the bands on this year’s line up. I mean, Watain, Mayhem, Deicide and Behemoth sharing a stage with Machine Fucking Head?

What I think is important to remember is this: Bloodstock is the main metal festival in the UK. The way that it stays alive, in what is still in many ways a niche market, is by attracting a large and diverse number of people. This means catering to a mass market, and booking some more well known and widely popular bands is one of the ways they will do this. Machine Head are incredibly commercially successful, and with the cancellation of this year’s Sonisphere still looming over festival organisers everywhere, the Bloodstock people will have been feeling quite pressured to deliver the goods. Not only that, but they have the chance to nick a few of the people who would only have been going to Sonisphere- which, by the way, is a rock festival, not a purely metal fest. If that means they have to book someone a bit more radio friendly, then so be it. I’d rather Bloodstock book Machine Head and keep going, than make every single booking elite and super kvlt and run out of money in two years time.

I’m not going to lie; even I will get bored if every single band at Bloodstock is an extreme, super-evil death/black metal band, or a cheesy-yet-epic Euro power metal band. I need variety. And by the time Saturday evening rolls around, I will be incredibly drunk, and definitely in the mood for a little nostalgia. I’ll dance with the best of them and hope against hope that Robb Flynn and his merry men blast out Davidian and Imperium into the hazy summer night sky. If nothing else, Robb isn’t going to take a gobstopper to the head lightly. Whilst Cradle of Filth rightly stopped their set for fear of Paul Allender’s welfare, I’m pretty sure the gobstopper would come off worse in that fight.

Now, if you will excuse me, I’m off to get my fork throwing arm in shape for the extreme sport that is Forky Forky. Where did I put that courgette?

Hannah O’Flanagan, 2012

Evile Confirmed For Bloodstock

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 30th March 2012 by Nico Davidson

Evile are among the latest groups to be confirmed for this year’s edition of Bloodstock Open Air, a dedicated metal festival held annually in Derbyshire, UK.

The band will be performing on the Sophie Lancaster Stage on Sunday, 12th August, and join a line-up of bands such as Testament, Sepultura, Behemoth, the legendary Alice Cooper, Deicide and many more.

Evile lead guitarist Ol Drake commented: “It was great to wake up to the confirmation of our appearance at the one and only Bloodstock Festival.  With the release of our Five Serpent’s Teeth album, we dedicated the track ‘Centurion’ to the festival, and for them to have us back with a great slot on the Sophie Lancaster stage, it’s bound to be a show to remember.  We may just even have a special, first time live-airing of the previously mentioned track for the BOA masses. Come along for your Evile fix! Long live Bloodstock!”

Get tickets and more information about Bloodstock at http://www.bloodstock.uk.com

See Evile live at the following shows:

Apr. 12 – Madrid, Spain – Sala Ritmo y Compas
Apr. 13 – Gijon, Spain – Sala Acapulco
Apr. 14 – Pamplona, Spain – Sala Totem
Apr. 15 – Barcelona, Spain – Sala Music Hall
Apr. 21 – Haugesund, Norway – Karmoygeddon Festival
May 05-06 – Eastern Sea, Finland – Radio Rock Cruise
May 28 – Belfast, UK – Ulster Hall (w/ MACHINE HEAD)
May 30 – Dublin, Ireland – Olympia Theatre (w/ MACHINE HEAD)
Jun. 03 – Exeter, UK – Real Devon Rocks at Exeter Phoenix
Jul. 20 – Luarca, Spain – Luarca Metal Fest
Aug. 12 – Walton-On-Trent, UK – Bloodstock Open Air Festival
Aug. 24/25 – Wörrstadt, Germany – Neuborn Open Air Festival

In related news, Evile lead guitarist Ol Drake has been nominated for the “Dimebag Darrell Shredder” award at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods.  You can vote for Ol here.

Ziyos – Master of Sin EP [2010]

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , on 21st March 2011 by Nico Davidson

Band: Ziyos
Album: Master Of Sin
Release Year: 2010
Genre: Metal

 

“Master Of Sin EP” is the debut release by British metalheads “Ziyos”. It was released in October 2010 via Emania Productions.

The first track of the EP is the title track “Master Of Sin”, which begins with a choppy guitar intro which leads into a more thrash sounding guitar riff. The vocals sound like a mixture of Dave Mustaine and Alice Cooper. The drums well played and bang on the beat. The bass fits in well with the rest of the track as well. The guitar solo has a very thrash metal sound to it, sort of like an old skool Metallica-meets-Megadeth sound. The guitar riffs throughout the track are just brilliant. The next track, “Blood Of The Aggressor”, starts with a bass intro which is soon accompanied by a pretty good guitar riff. The track soon turns heavy, which some lovely melodic parts as well. The vocals, again, have a very Alice Cooper/Dave Mustaine sound. Even the lyrics have a slight Megadeth element to them. “Blood Of The Aggressor” is clearly the best track on the EP and has the potential to be a mosh pit anthem!

“Ascension” is next. Beginning with a partially brutal guitar intro, which leads into a more intense, heavier riff. The use of double bass pedals are astounding as well. The vocals sound more like Mustaine on this track. The drums sound heavy and bang on the beat. There is a soft section during in the track, which just adds a whole new level of sheer immenseness to the track, especially as an amazing guitar solo follows straight after it. The last track “No Honour For The Fallen” comes next. It begins with the sound of planes flying overhead, alongside air raid sirens and gun fire. The guitars soon take over afterwards, setting the mood with a solemn guitar riff mixed with the tapping of symbols. The vocals are soft, which fits in so well with the soft guitar riff. The track soon turns heavy, with a high-pitched melodic guitar section.  The guitar solo is simply mind blowing. Afterwards, the track turns soft again, working it’s way to turn heavy again. The track finishes in a damn epic way as well.

“Master Of Sin EP” is perhaps one of the most impressive releases in the British metal scene since the days of the NWOBHM. It has everything a metal release should have: Solos, amazing riffs, great vocals and heavy drums. Ziyos have proven themselves to have the potential to become a household name in the British metal scene.

4.5/5

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