METALLICA are taking a break for the holidays, but will return to the studio in January with a view towards releasing a new studio album next fall, according to statements attributed to the band's management and their publicist by MTV.com. While frontman James Hetfield spent time in rehab for alcoholism and “other addictions” (which reportedly includes an addiction to painkillers that Hetfield began taking as a way to deal with his chronic back pain), drummer Lars Ulrich and guitarist Kirk Hammett worked on new songs with the group's longtime producer Bob Rock, who also played bass on the recordings. METALLICA have not yet found a replacement for bassist Jason Newsted, who left in January, the band's management told MTV News.
Unconfirmed reports suggest that LIMP BIZKIT frontman Fred Durst will announce via MTV's Total Request Live this afternoon that former GUNS N' ROSES axeman Buckethead is the new guitarist in LIMP BIZKIT. As posted here yesterday, the band's official web site states simply that “MAJOR announcement” will be made about the LIMP BIZKIT guitar search, but no further details are divulged.
The ongoing Merry Mayhem trek—featuring OZZY OSBOURNE, ROB ZOMBIE, SOIL and ONESIDEZERO—has had its two final shows—scheduled for December 28th and 29th in Los Angels and San Diego, California, respectively—canceled due to routing problems, according to Rolling Stone online. The tour will now wrap up on the 23rd in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
METHODS OF MAYHEM have set May 21st as the release date for their sophomore full-length CD, which was recently produced by Scott Humphrey (i.e. ROB ZOMBIE, SPINESHANK, MOTLEY CRUE), who also produced METHODS OF MAYHEM's 1999 debut. The as-yet-untitled album contains “so many insane tracks, everyone is having a hard time picking a single,' mainman Tommy Lee (ex-MOTLEY CRUE) told MTV News on Sunday before taking the stage at the My VH1 Music Awards to introduce Mary J. Blige. Among the cuts that were laid down are 'a beautiful track called 'Blue', ' which features INCUBUS singer Brandon Boyd and guitarist Mike Einziger, a track with CYPRESS HILL rapper B-Real and one with Mix Master Mike. Also likely to be included on the album is a collaboration with turntablist DJ Z-Trip for a remake of David Bowie's 'Fame', which may get a remix treatment from Sean “P. Diddy” Combs.
German power metallers PRIMAL FEAR have completed the pre-production process for their upcoming Black Sun CD, which is tentatively scheduled to be recorded in early 2002 at House Of Music Studio in Winterbach, Germany and mixed at Texas' Sonic Ranch Studio for a mid-year release through Nuclear Blast Records. Among the tracks that are set to appear on the album are the following:
01. Veiled Control
02. Magic Eye
03. We Go Down
04. Lightyears From Home
07. Cold Day In Hell
09. Black Sun
10. Mind Control
11. Mind Machine
12. Fear (Dogs Of War)
13. Stranded In Space
According to unconfirmed reports, KAMELOT drummer Casey Grillo may sit out the band's upcoming European tour with AXXIS for unspecified reasons. RHAPSODY skinsman Alex Holzwarth and HELLOWEEN/ex-METALIUM pounder Mark Cross are being mentioned as possible temporary replacements for the duration of the trek.
STRATOVARIUS vocalist Timo Kotipelto has completed the mixing process for his as-yet-untitled forthcoming solo CD, which is tentatively scheduled to be issued during February. The mixing was reportedly finalized on Friday, November 30th at Finnvox Studios by Mikko Karmila. According to Kotipelto, “I'm more than satisfied to the sound Mikko once again created!”
'Spinal Tap' moment of the week belongs to JUDAS PRIEST vocalist Tim “Ripper” Owens, who screamed to the audience at PRIEST's headlining gig the Palace in Melbourne, Australia on December 3rd, 'Hello Melbourne!! It's great to be back!!' before sheepishly correcting himself, 'Not that we've been here before'. The audience reportedly responded with embarrassed silence and many chuckles all round. (source: Exciter)
MARILYN MANSON is scheduled to serve as a host on M2 from December 10th to December 14th.
New York's AMONG THIEVES, featuring former LIFE OF AGONY bassist Alan Robert and ex-AGNOSTIC FRONT drummer Will Shepler, will have an animated video for a new song entitled 'Elevate' available for viewing via the band's official web site at www.amongthievesmusic.com during January. The clip was directed and illustrated by none other than Robert.
Washington's AGGRESSION CORE, featuring former NEVERMORE and current ANNIHILATOR axeman Curran Murphy, have made two MP3 samples of work-in-progress material for their upcoming Victim Or Enemy CD available for download via their official web site at the following locations:
01. Curr Clean
AGGRESSION CORE will perform their next local show on December 31st (New Year's Eve) at the Planet Hotrod in Fife, Washington with HATE FIST, DRUNK AS USUAL, SEATOWN MANGLERS, and FURY 16. AGGRESSION CORE will take the stage at 11:30 PM and “will ring in the new year AC style”, according to the band's web site.
Former MEGADETH guitarist Chris Poland has just issued the European edition of his Chasing The Sun solo CD through Mascot Records, featuring three bonus tracks not included on the US version: “Terra Incognito”, “Da Vinci” and “Sand Castles” (dedicated to Jimi Hendrix). In other news, the guitarist's official web site has posted pictures of the axeman in the recording studio with OHM, a Los Angeles-based jazz rock trio consisting of major label and studio musicians, who are presently completing work on a new CD. To see the photos, click here.
FALL SILENT have completed work on their new studio album, entitled Drunken Violence, with producer Eric Steinman, who had previously worked with WILL HAVEN, COUNTERVAIL, DEFTONES, FAR, UNEARTHED and others. According to vocalist Levi Watson, '[the album contains] definitely the best 11 songs we have ever put on an album and I am so f.cking excited for everyone to hear it. A lot of new ideas and new approaches to the FALL SILENT sound have made Drunken Violence another solid release for us. We are having some trouble with the artwork right now but we should get that worked out soon. The album should be out by March 2002 on Revelation Records.' The album's release will be followed by a west coast tour, and a full US tour will ensue during the summer.
Former WHITE LION / FREAK OF NATURE vocalist MIKE TRAMP has made samples of three tracks from his forthcoming solo CD, entitled Recovering The Wasted Years, available for download via the www.melodicrock.com web site at the following locations:
01. Living A Lie
02. Mr. Death
03. Always Tomorrow
Produced by Mike in Copenhagen, Denmark and mixed by WHITE LION / FREAK OF NATURE / CAPRICORN engineer Phil Kaffel in Los Angeles, Recovering The Wasted Years will be issued on January 4th through an as-yet-undisclosed label.
MR. BIG have issued a brand new Japan-only EP, entitled Arrow, featuring the title track, plus three “Live In The Studio” acoustic tracks, which were recorded at Warner Music Recording Studio Japan on August 25th, 2001. The EP also features Video-Extra footage of a film clip to the single. The full track fro the EP is as follows:
01. Arrow (album version)
03. Lost In America
Former BATON ROUGE/JOHN NORUM/MSG singer Kelly Keeling has secured a three-album solo deal with an as-yet-undisclosed label, and will begin recording the debut effort in January, according to a letter sent by the vocalist to www.rockreunion.com. A possibility exists that the album will be issued under the “band” moniker KKROADS, and it is likely that it will include songwriting collaborations with Donnie from ENUFF Z'NUFF.
Dutch death metal outfit SEVERE TORTURE will take part in the Bloodletting North America Tour Part III, which is scheduled to take place in April 2002 and will also include DEEDS OF FLESH, DISGORGE and DISAVOWED, among others. In other news, SEVERE TORTURE negotiating a European tour in September 2002 to coincide with the release of the group's next studio album.
The reunited San Francisco Bay Area thrashers EXODUS will be supported by SIFT at The Bourbon Street Bar And Grill in Concord, California on December 21st.
Due to “contractual bullsh.t and musical differences', Swedish “progmetallers” MAYADOME have broken up. Guitarist/vocalist Teddy Moller, keyboardist Sebastian Okupski and bassist Erik Grandin have started a new band called LOCH VOSTOK, which is said to be more aggressive and jazzy in the vein of CYNIC and SADIST, with a touch of SYMPHONY X and KING DIAMOND. For more information, go to the band's web site at: http://home.swipnet.se/mayadome/lv
Los Angeles-based progressive metal/fusion triumvirate COSMOSQUAD, featuring MOGG/WAY guitarist Jeff Kollman, bassist Barry Sparks (ULI JON ROTH, DOKKEN), and drummer Shane Gaalaas (ULI JON ROTH, GLENN HUGHES), have scheduled two more live extravaganzas to ring in the holidays in style. COSMOSQUAD will appear at the venerable Baked Potato in North Hollywood, CA on Wednesday, December 12th and the Hard Hat in Toledo, OH on Friday, December 15th, respectively. The latter marks the first time Toledo native Jeff Kollman will be playing his hometown with both Gaalaas and Sparks in tow. COSMOSQUAD's sophomore release, recorded at Jeff Kollman's Crumb Studios, is scheduled for a spring 2002 release. Samples of several songs can be downloaded at www.jeffkollman.com.
As reported by our favorite booking agency, A.S.S. Concerts from Germany, SKYCLAD have lined up the following dates during December/January:
Dec. 27 – Aschaffenburg, GER @ Colos-Saal
Dec. 28 – Bielefeld, GER @ Irish Pub
Dec. 29 – Zwickau, GER @ Alarm
Dec. 30 – Hamburg, GER @ Logo
Dec. 31 – Hannover, GER @ Faust
Jan. 02 – Verviers, BEL @ Spirit of 66
Jan. 03 – Darmstadt, GER @ An Sibin
Jan. 04 – Esslingen, GER @ Irish Pub
Jan. 05 – Pforzheim, GER @ Irish Pub
Here are the re-scheduled dates for the upcoming MARDUK/AMON AMOARTH/DIABOLIC US tour, which was originally due to take place a couple of months back, but ended up getting cancelled after members of MARDUK encountered “visa problems”:
Jan. 11 - The Lab - St. Paul, MN
Jan. 12 - Riley's - Aurora, IL
Jan. 13 - Shelter - Detroit, MI
Jan. 14 - Flying Machine - Cleveland, OH
Jan. 15 - Emerson Theatre - Indianapolis, IN
Jan. 16 - The Blue Max - Lexington, KY
Jan. 17 - Obsessions - Randolph, NJ
Jan. 18 - L'amour - Brooklyn, NY
Jan. 19 - Kathedral Room - Toronto, Ont.
Jan. 20 - Foufounes Electrique - Montreal, Que
Jan. 22 - Jaxx - W. Springfield, VA
Jan. 23 - Ziggy's - Winston - Salem, NC
Jan. 24 - Cotton Club - Atlanta, GA
Jan. 25 - Imperial Lounge - Jacksonville, FL
Jan. 27 - Culture Room - Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Jan. 29 - Cardi's - Houston, TX
Jan. 30 - Trenton Point Hall - Edingburg, TX
Jan. 31 - Flamingo Cantina - Austin, TX
Feb. 01 - E-9 - El Paso, TX
Feb. 02 - Launchpad - Albuquerque, NM
Feb. 03 - Mason Jar - Phoenix, AZ
Feb. 04 - Chain Reaction - Anaheim, CA
Feb. 05 - The Pound - San Francisco, CA
Feb. 07 - Bluebird - Denver, CO
Feb. 08 - Pig Pen - Clinton, IA
Feb. 09 - Creepy Crawl-St. Louis, MO
Here are a couple of SKINLAB-related flyers for you to check out… The first one is for the December 15th gig at The Cactus Club in San Jose, California, featuring SKINLAB, TECHNOCRACY (incl. VIO-LENCE guitarist Phil Demmel), DOPESICK and HOSTILITY, while the second one is for the December 9th show at The Bottom Of The Hill, featuring SKINLAB, WILL HAVEN, and CUTTHROATS9.
Australia's TYRANT are currently composing the material for the follow-up to last year's Freaks Of Nature CD, which they hope to record sometime in January 2002. At the moment, the band are searching for a suitable producer for the sessions, after which they will enter the studio. TYRANT are reportedly in negotiations with a number of labels regarding a deal. Among the titles that are set to appear on the forthcoming effort are the following:
01. Thunder Down Under
02. Hard As Nails
03. Must Be The Devil
04. Rude, Crude & Tattooed
05. Courage Of The Heart
06. Perfect World
07. Killing Machine
08. A Few Days To Kill
09. Drink With The Devil