The second trailer for "Forces Of The Northern Night", the highly anticipated double DVD from Norwegian symphonic black metallers DIMMU BORGIR, is available below. Due on April 14 via Nuclear Blast, the set will contain two of the band's live performances: their legendary show in Oslo, presenting DIMMU BORGIR on stage with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and a bombastic choir, as well as their entire performance at Wacken Open Air festival in 2012 in Wacken, Germany with almost a hundred musicians on stage. Both concerts present a spectacular sound scenario of raging black metal in front of an epic orchestral landscape plus the band's unique visuals. DIMMU BORGIR's remarkable and atramentous stage show has long seemed like a natural evolution for fans, but much time, arrangements and commitment were necessary to put this gigantic production into reality and fill the stage with 90 minutes of mindblowing aural delight per night. The shows guide the fans through classics from the band's discography — from the majestic finisher "Mourning Palace" — which can be seen below (footage from the Wacken show) — to the stomping manifesto "Puritania" and the haunting "Gateways". "For us, this is the pinnacle of our career so far," says DIMMU BORGIR frontman Stian Thoresen (a.k.a. Shagrath). "As a band, we've always used a lot of symphonic elements in our music. But we haven't been able to use a real orchestra. We've had to use samples, synthesizers and so on, so this was a huge, awesome experience for us." In addition to the two concerts, "Forces Of The Northern Night" will include a bonus documentary feature. DIMMU BORGIR's May 28, 2011 concert at the Oslo Spektrum in Norway, which is included on "Forces Of The Northern Night", featured a special setlist with 53 members of KORK (the Norwegian Radio Orchestra) and 30 members of the Schola Cantorum choir, who were musical guests on the band's ninth studio album, 2010's "Abrahadabra". The show was professionally filmed and was broadcast as part of a one-hour documentary in June 2011 on NRK (Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation), the Norwegian government-owned radio and television public broadcasting company and the largest media organization in Norway. In an interview with Scuzz TV, DIMMU BORGIR guitarist Sven Atle Kopperud (a.k.a. Silenoz) stated about the experience of performing with an orchestra: "It was, of course, really special, especially since it was in Oslo, and a lot of people traveled in for the show from all over the world. And everything went great on stage for once. When you have a hundred people on stage, the percentage of something going wrong is definitely there, but it was really, really good." He added: "You think your band is professional, then you play with an orchestra, and then you know, 'Oh, we're not so professional after all.'" DIMMU BORGIR last year extended its partnership with Nuclear Blast. The band's tenth album is tentatively due before the end of 2017. DIMMU BORGIR's most recent touring lineup included Geir Bratland (APOPTYGMA BERZERK, THE KOVENANT) on keyboards and Terje Andersen (a.k.a. Cyrus; SUSPERIA) on bass.
BLACK STAR RIDERS members insist drummer Jimmy DeGrasso's involvement in the RATT reunion will no negative impact on their band. DeGrasso, 53, has performed with Stephen Pearcy, Warren DeMartini, Juan Croucier and Carlos Cavazo twice in recent months as the newly reactivated RATT prepares to tour. But DeGrasso also has a demanding schedule with trans-Atlantic rockers BLACK STAR RIDERS, who have just released their third album, "Heavy Fire". "Jimmy's such a world-class, amazing drummer that he's going to sound great in any situation," BLACK STAR RIDERS guitarist Damon Johnson told the "White Line Fever" podcast (hear audio below). "I just know, for all of us, we love to play. "I love meeting the guys who are involved in other stuff. There's no way that his participating in that is going to interfere with BLACK STAR RIDERS. "I think all the RATT guys are still trying to figure out what they're going to do anyway. "It's a great opportunity for Jimmy, and any time I talk to him about it, he just kind of laughs about the whole thing because it's crazy that he would be at this point in his life and his phone would be ringing all the time from all types of people that want to have him come and play. "So I'm happy for him and it's got to be a lot of fun." Asked if DeGrasso will once again sit behind the kit when Pearcy, Croucier, DeMartini and Cavazo resume playing shows as RATT, Stephen told "Trunk Nation", Eddie Trunk's show on SiriusXM channel Volume (106): "I think we're still figuring that out. You know, we're taking things a little differently nowadays. Everything has to be I's dotted, T's crossed. No disrespect to anybody, but we want things done properly, we want things done right to where there's some life left in this and we can walk away going, 'Hey, that was a really good run. Let's do it again in three years.' You know what I'm saying? So we wanna do everything very meticulously — just like the approach I took on [my new solo album] 'Smash'. I mean, look, we took our time until we couldn't do anything else to it. We didn't throw more icing on it to sweeten it up; we just said, 'Hey, it is what it is.' So the same approach is going to be schematic with how we approach RATT and our business — very carefully, very meticulously and very smart." Pearcy added that DeGrasso's touring schedule with the BLACK STAR RIDERS could conflict with RATT's upcoming live activities, but remained confident that a suitable drummer would be found in time to take part in all of RATT's shows. "There's options, believe me," he said. "You know, this time around, it's working smart, not hard. So we wanna plan on taking RATT to some of these places that we should have been and could have been and more. We wanna go to South America, Australia, Europe, Japan… I mean, we wanna cover some ground. If this is the last rodeo, you know, we're getting on it."
"Cognitive Contortions", the new video from instrumental modern progressive pioneers ANIMALS AS LEADERS, can be seen below. The track is taken from the band's fourth album, "The Madness Of Many", which was released last November via Sumerian Records. The CD was produced by the bandmembers themselves, with guitarist Javier Reyes handling the final mix. Following the stunning "The Joy Of Motion", which cemented the band as one of the most innovative musical forces of this generation, "The Madness Of Many" sees the band raise their creative and technical game even further. Said ANIMALS AS LEADERS guitarist Tosin Abasi: "This album feels like total synergy between the three of us. None of this music would have turned out the same way without the equal inclusion of all of our musical ideas and that feel special. We're beyond thrilled with the result." Added drummer Matt Garstka: "'The Madness Of Many' is an explorative and ambitious journey of harmony, rhythm, musical expression and emotion. It has been the most collaborative effort for the band and an evolution in each of the members' musical path. Although conceptually dense, it is the most natural sounding ANIMALS AS LEADERS album yet." Reyes commented on the symbiotic nature of the new album, saying: "'The Madness Of Many' is an explorative and ambitious journey of harmony, rhythm, musical expression and emotion. It has been the most collaborative effort for the band and an evolution in each of the members' musical path." "The Madness Of Many" track listing: 01. Arithmophobia 02. Ectogenesis 03. Cognitive Contortions 04. Inner Assassins 05. Private Visions Of The World 06. Backpfeifengesicht 07. Transcentience 08. The Glass Bridge 09. The Brain Dance 10. Aepirophobia
Robert Plant joined renowned violinist Nigel Kennedy on stage Tuesday night (March 14) at London's Royal Albert Hall to perform two songs: a cover of "Hey Joe", made famous by THE JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE, and LED ZEPPELIN's 1975 classic "Kashmir". This marked the first time Plant sang "Kashmir" live since LED ZEPPELIN's historic O2 Arena reunion show in December 2007 and his first full performance of the seminal track without ZEPPELIN guitarist Jimmy Page. A 38-second clip of the "Kashmir" rendition can be seen below. Kennedy said of the ZEPPELIN singer: "Planty is a genuine rock legend and a true musical trailblazer. He's always pushing and challenging himself and immersing himself in music. When we work together it's a combination of power and creativity." The "Nigel Kennedy And Friends: Gala Celebration" was part of the inaugural Love Classical festival at the world-famous London venue where Plant made memorable appearances with LED ZEPPELIN in 1969 and 1970. He later returned as a solo headliner. Plant first worked with Kennedy on his album "Fate Of Nations" in 1993. The singer has arguably been the lone holdout for another LED ZEPPELIN reunion. Despite promoter-led attempts to get the band to reform for a series of concerts, Plant remains committed to his new musical direction in the roots and blues-based "Americana" field.
After a five-year hiatus, Finnish rock band THE RASMUS will release a new single, "Paradise", on March 31. The track was recorded and mixed in Stockholm, and produced by the Swedish team The Family. One of Finland's biggest music exports, THE RASMUS has had a remarkable career to date, with the band's big international breakthrough coming with their fifth album, when single "In The Shadows" became a worldwide hit. In 2012, after releasing three more albums, and multiple world tours, members Lauri Ylönen, Pauli Rantasalmi, Eero Heinonen and Aki Hakala, took a break from their busy band schedule. During this period, singer Lauri Ylönen moved to Los Angeles, a change that resonates in many of the songs he has written since. "Paradise is a relative thing," Ylönen says on the upcoming single. "One man's hell can be another man's paradise."
Japanese pop-metal sensation BABYMETAL will release "Live At Tokyo Dome", on April 1. The 2 Blu-ray + 4 CD set captures the band's two September 2016 concerts at Tokyo Dome which saw BABYMETAL perform in front of 110,000 people. "Live At Tokyo Dome" track listing: Red Night (September 19, 2016) [Blu-ray Disc 1 / CD Disc 1 & 2] 01. Road of Resistance 02. Yava! 03. Iine! 04. Syncopation 05. Amore 06. GJ! 07. Akumu No Rondo 08. Song 4 09. Catch Me If You Can 10. Gimme Chocolate 11. Karate 12. Tales of The Destinies 13. The One (English version) Black Night (September 20, 2016) [Blu-ray Disc 2 / CD Disc 3 & 4] 01. Babymetal Death 02. Awadama Fever 03. Uki Uki Midnight 04. Meta! Taro 05. Sis. Anger 06. Akatsuki 07. Onedari Daisakusen 08. No Rain, No Rainbow 09. Doki Doki Morning 10. Meigitsune 11. Head Bangya 12. Ijime, Dame, Zettai BABYMETAL will support the RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS on select dates of their U.S. tour in April. They will also hit the road with KORN and STONE SOUR in June. BABYMETAL appeared as special guests to METALLICA at the Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul, Korea on January 11 as part of the latter band's "Worldwired" world tour. They also supported GUNS N' ROSES in Japan in January. BABYMETAL released a new 13-track live album, "Live At Wembley", on December 9 via earMUSIC/Edel. A digital version will was available on December 30. With a carefully selected track listing, the CD captures the spectacular performance recorded at BABYMETAL's first-ever U.K. arena show, "Babymetal World Tour 2016 Kicks Off At The SSE Arena, Wembley", which took place in London on April 2, 2016. The show saw BABYMETAL become the first Japanese artist in history to perform a headline show at The SSE Arena, Wembley. This concert garnered an attendance of 12,000 people, where BABYMETAL also broke the merchandise sales record of the venue, creating history once again. BABYMETAL made its U.S. late-night TV debut on "The Late Show With Stephen Colbert" in April 2016, performing "Gimme Chocolate" off their debut album.
During a recent interview with the "Eddie, Jason & Chris Show", RATT singer Stephen Pearcy spoke about the legal battle the band has been embroiled in with drummer Bobby Blotzer over the rights to the group's name. Last November, a California judge ruled against Blotzer with respect to whether bassist Juan Croucier had committed trademark infringement by using the RATT name and logo to advertise his band RATT'S JUAN CROUCIER back in the fall 2015. The judge furthermore decided that the corporation WBS, Inc. — of which Blotzer and guitarist Warren DeMartini were thought to be the sole shareholders — did not have ownership interest in the RATT marks and that the name and brand was still owned by the members who were part of the original RATT partnership agreement. In addition to claiming to have expelled Blotzer from the partnership following the latest court ruling, DeMartini, Croucier and Pearcy said that Blotzer could now only refer to himself as a "former member of RATT," as per the partnership agreement. Asked for an update on the court dispute over the rights to the RATT name, Pearcy told the "Eddie, Jason & Chris Show" (hear audio below): "A person decided, through another entity, which no longer exists, that he had control and rights when, in fact, he didn't, and it was proven in court that the partnership does — and that's the four of us, including him. But we fired him up from the partnership. So pretty much the dust has settled. It's just finalities now, legally. It was not a good thing." He continued: "The thing is, with the band, this guy never wrote a note, and he just decided, 'Well, I'm king of the jungle, and I'm gonna rewrite history,' and we said, 'No, you're not.' And the fact that he was suing us made it even worse. It's, like, okay. How many fights do you wanna get into? One big gangfight, or you wanna take each one of us on by yourself?' And he decided to do it by himself, which is even worse. So we're happy with the outcome, and we are the only version that is out there and will continue to be out there." Pearcy went on to express his outrage that Blotzer would even contemplate carrying on as RATT without any of the other members of the band's classic lineup. He said: "When you have somebody, like I say, try to rewrite history, and they're doing it with a cover band… And, look, I wrote a lot of, if not all of the songs I had something to do with, so it had more to do with our integrity. It's, like, we work all these years, and people still wanna see us. We don't go and play out there all the time anyway — we take a year or two off, or maybe six years between records — but that gives nobody else permission to just decide one day, 'Well, guess what? I'm going to do everything. And I had nothing to do with nothing but play drums.' So it was kind of insulting and damaging to the integrity of the group and our legacy. I mean, I'm sure Robbin [Crosby, late RATT guitarist] is quite pissed somewhere. The band will never be the same without him, but I'm sure he's not lying peacefully right now. Or he is now, but when this was going on.' He added: "The dust has settled, and that's pretty much how we'll leave it. We're not into mudslinging and this adolescent name calling and stuff, which we found very humiliating to our audience. You know, our audience is much smarter than somebody gave them credit for." According to Stephen, the newly reactivated RATT has already commenced the songwriting process for the long-awaited follow-up to the band's 2010 album "Infestation", although fans shouldn't expect to hear any new material for at least another year. "Now that [my new solo album] 'Smash' is done and out there, Warren and I have actually demoed up a couple of songs [for RATT]. We would like — as we're taking things very meticulously this time around… Hopefully by the end of the year we'll start work on the record. That's the plan, so that we can have a nice 2018 with a new record." He continued: "We like making records. The one thing that keeps this band together all the time — in particular Warren and myself, and even Carlos [Cavazo, former QUIET RIOT and current RATT guitarist], who wrote on the last record — is the music. I mean, this is what we do. I do it 24-7. I'm always writing for something. But, yes, we'd like to start work, at the end of the year, on a record." Pearcy, Croucier and DeMartini played their first official show as the reunited RATT on February 11 at Treasure Island in Welch, Minnesota. They were joined on stage by Cavazo and drummer Jimmy DeGrasso, who previously played with Y&T, WHITE LION and MEGADETH, among others. A completely different version of RATT — led by Blotzer and featuring a revolving door of members — has been hitting stages across the country since the fall of 2015.
KORN singer Jonathan Davis was interviewed on the March 12 edition of "Whiplash", the KLOS radio show hosted by Full Metal Jackie. You can now listen to the chat using the widget below. A couple of excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET). On the KORN songwriting process: Jonathan: "I have one common thing I wanna do throughout all the albums [and that is to] try to experiment and do things differenty. I don't like repeating myself. We've always pushed boundaries. What we've always wanted to do is experiment and try to do new things and challenge ourselves — all of us. Me, singing or writing music, it's always something different. And the rest of the guys, sometimes we take a step back and embrace some of the old-school stuff, but the common goal in our head is to push forward and try and do some new things. And that's challenging for us. If we just did the same old thing, that would be great too. I mean, there's bands that can do that; one of 'em is AC/DC. I love that band and they make the same record over and over, but that's AC/DC; that's what they do. For us, we like to switch up, because it gets boring to do the same old thing." On KORN's latest album, "The Serenity Of Suffering", representing a "return to roots" for the band: Jonathan: "Yeah, it was. I think it was the real return of [KORN guitarists] Munk [James 'Munky' Shaffer] and Head [Brian Welch] getting in a room and writing and making a record. I think with [2013's] 'The Paradigm Shift', we were just knocking the dust off the wheels and getting into writing again. But I think with those two in a room together and the way that [producer] Nick [Raskulinecz] recorded, making them sit there and do all the guitar tracks face to face and everything that happened, it was kind of a return, but there was a lot of new-school stuff. We took all the experiences we had and just mashed them together. 'Cause you've gotta remember — Head was gone for almost eight years, so all the experimenting we did, he came back and he was still in that same mindset he was eight years ago. So I think all of it just came together the way it should be, and we came up with this amazing record." On the musical ingredients that make KORN different from other heavy bands: Jonathan: "I've always had a problem with the term 'metal.' We never were that. I mean, just go back to the beginning when KORN started out. We came out of Huntington Beach, California, and they didn't know what to do with us. The first tour we went out was with BIOHAZARD and HOUSE OF PAIN. Second one was, I think, SICK OF IT ALL, ORANGE 9MM and us, and then we went out with, like, KMFDM. And we played shows with NO DOUBT, CADILLAC TRAMPS and PENNYWISE, and just stuck us all over the place. So I think that we went out and did all that stuff, and it seems like the metal community took us in. We were like the black sheep — we had no place to really go — and I really appreciate and I love the metal community. But as far as us being a metal band, a metal band, to me, is, like, JUDAS PRIEST or IRON MAIDEN — that's a metal band. I don't think KORN does that. I know it's something we do that's different. But I love the scene and there's some passionate people in it— really diehard fans. They don't care. If they don't like what you're doing, they'll let you know it, and I respect that about them and that scene." On how he would classify KORN's music, if he had to: Jonathan: "I think we're just heavy rock. I mean, I don't like categories, period, but we're more of a heavy rock band than just straight metal. I'm coming from when metal was, like I said, PRIEST and that era… DIO and those [bands]… singing about swords and dragons, and I love that. You know what I mean? To me, that was real metal music, and I love it. Don't get me wrong. But when it comes all down to it, it's music, and who cares what the hell it is? If you like it, you like it; if you don't, you don't. At the end of the day, that's all that matters." "Whiplash" airs every Sunday night from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. on the Los Angeles radio station 95.5 KLOS. The show can be heard on the KLOS web site at 955klos.com or you can listen in on the KLOS channel on iHeartRadio. Full Metal Jackie also hosts a nationally syndicated radio program, which can be heard all over the country. To see a full list of stations carrying Full Metal Jackie's show and when it airs, go to FullMetalJackieRadio.com.
Atlanta heavy rock icons MASTODON will release the official music video for their song "Show Yourself" on Thursday, March 16. The track is taken from the band's eighth studio album, "Emperor Of Sand", which will be released on March 31 via Reprise Records. MASTODON drummer-singer-lyricist Brann Dailor handles lead vocals on the track. "You're not as safe as far as I can tell, and I can tell," he sings on the song's chorus. "Only you can save yourself/ Soon this will all be a distant memory/ Or could this dream be real at all?" As Dailor told Rolling Stone, he was at first reticent about adding his vocals to "Show Yourself". "When I first heard that riff, I wasn't 100 percent on it," Dailor said. "I felt like it was too easy to like or something — which is stupid, but I want to avoid 'easy.' I was wrong about that one." The follow-up to 2014's "Once More 'Round The Sun", "Emperor Of Sand" was recorded at The Quarry Recording Studio in Kennesaw, just outside MASTODON's hometown of Atlanta, with producer Brendan O'Brien (PEARL JAM, NEIL YOUNG, AC/DC, RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE), who first worked with MASTODON on their seminal 2009 album "Crack The Skye". MASTODON kicks off a spring U.S. headline tour in support of "Emperor Of Sand" on April 14 in Missoula, Montana, with support from EAGLES OF DEATH METAL and RUSSIAN CIRCLES. The tour also includes stops at several festivals, including the Carolina Rebellion on May 5. Each pair of tickets purchased online for MASTODON (excluding festival dates and the May 6 Philadelphia show) includes a choice of a physical or digital copy of "Emperor Of Sand". Ticket purchasers will receive instructions via e-mail on how to redeem the album on March 31. Tickets are on sale now.
Uh, this probably doesn't end well for us.— Mastodon (@mastodonmusic) March 14, 2017
"Show Yourself" music video coming Thursday. pic.twitter.com/7nHSXmBLKr
LACUNA COIL singers Cristina Scabbia and Andrea Ferro have revealed to the Brazilian metal channel Heavy Talk that they are planning "something special" to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the release of their self-titled debut EP. Asked if LACUNA COIL will release another DVD to follow 2008's "Visual Karma (Body, Mind And Soul)", Cristina said (see video below): "We have plans. We don't know if it's gonna be a DVD or something, but we are planning something special for the twentieth anniversary of the band that will be coming late next year. So it will be something different — not just a typical [release]." Added Andrea: "We have kind of a secret project. We can't really tell right now, but it involves different things. It might also be a DVD, but it's a more complete package we're gonna offer to celebrate the twentieth anniversary. So there is something in the works, but not specifically just a DVD." LACUNA COIL in December released a new song called "Naughty Christmas". The front cover and font were all created by bassist Marco "Maki" Coti-Zelati. LACUNA COIL last fall wrapped up a successful European tour, which was sold out in various cities, including London, Birmingham, Bristol, Southampton and Tilburg. The band is set to do another run of dates later this year. LACUNA COIL's latest album, "Delirium", entered The Billboard 200 chart at position No. 33 with first-week sales of just over 13,000 units — nearly all from pure album sales. The set followed the No. 27-peaking "Broken Crown Halo", which also opened with around 13,000 copies back in 2014.