German power metallers PRIMAL FEAR have begun mixing their new album with Jacob Hansen (VOLBEAT, PRETTY MAIDS, DESTRUCTION) at his Hansen studio in Ribe, Denmark for a January 2014 release via Frontiers Records. 12 songs were recorded during the new CD sessions, including "two epic songs, one guitar ballad, and nine crushing metal songs with all the trademarks you know and love to hear from PRIMAL FEAR," according to the band. The CD was engineered by Achim Köhler (EDGUY, MASTERPLAN) and is being produced by PRIMAL FEAR bassist Mat Sinner.
In a recent interview with Jump Metal, PRIMAL FEAR vocalist Ralf Scheepers stated about the musical direction of the band's upcoming album: "It's not so far away [from what we've done in the past], because we have our style, you know. It was hard for us to imagine… because [2012's] 'Unbreakable' was a pretty tough... and really, in our ears, pretty great album, and for us, it was somehow hard to top it. But as soon as we started to write the new songs, and as soon as I heard what Mat and Magnus [Karlsson, guitar] did in the first place — because then they sent me some stuff and I added my ideas on it — I just thought, 'Wow, this is amazing.' And in the end, it really turned out to be a better album than 'Unbreakable'."
Frontiers and PRIMAL FEAR in January announced that they have renewed their partnership for another multi-album deal, which will include two more studio releases and one live CD and DVD.
Swedish heavy rockers GRAND MAGUS have entered the studio to begin recording the follow-up to last year's "The Hunt" for an early 2014 release via Nuclear Blast. The band is once again working with producer Nico Elgstrand and engineer Staffan Karlsson (ARCH ENEMY, SPIRITUAL BEGGARS) at Studio Sweetspot in Halmstad.
Commented GRAND MAGUS drummer Ludwig "Ludde" Witt: "The time has come! Warriors! Things have been quiet around here recently, you know us well enough to know that we haven't been sitting around idly though... We have finished writing our new album and we enter the studio!!! Monday the 2 of September marks the start of our new journey. The result will be something to behold. That is a promise. You want something heavy? You'll get it. This will be our strongest album to date."
Added the entire band: "The MAGUS have been busy bees with an elaborate pre-production phase, meaning that we have demoed all the tracks and it certainly pays off now. The recordings proper started off this Monday and we already have some killer basic tracks brewing. We are working simultaneously on several tracks to ensure flow and proper impact. It feels like it's going to be something extremely powerful this time... The drums are killer and with the perfect touch we've learned to expect from Ludwig, there will be a wall of ferocious guitars and grinding bass guitar that will shake the bowels. Among other things we worked today on 'Holmgång', which has a lot of riffing going on and we think the guitar sound is the best we've ever had on a recording. Pure power!"
"The Hunt" was released in Europe on May 25, 2012 via Nuclear Blast Records. The CD's cover artwork was created by Arik Roper (CATHEDRAL, HIGH ON FIRE, SLEEP), who also handled the art on GRAND MAGUS' "Iron Will" LP.
Due to family obligations and work commitments, drummer Sebastian "Seb" Sippola left GRAND MAGUS last year.
Singer Rob Halford of British heavy metal legends JUDAS PRIEST spoke to Billboard.com about the progress of the songwriting and recording sessions for the band's long-awaited follow-up to 2008's "Nostradamus".
"The writing process is complete," he said. "Now it's the painstaking work of making sure that you get every single note, every single nuance of the vocal, every tiny aspect...right. We're still tracking (instruments). It's just a very laborious but enjoyable part of making the record."
Regarding the sound of the new PRIEST material, Halford said, "[It's] hard. It's heavy. It's something we think our PRIEST fans will be thrilled with. We know we have a reputation to maintain, and we know we have to deliver something really strong and solid. The album is going to be full of all the great things you love about JUDAS PRIEST — I don't think I can say anything more than that without being hung, drawn and quartered."
In an interview with VH1 Radio Network's Dave Basner, Halford spoke about what fans can expect from JUDAS PRIEST's next release: "We felt it was very important to follow up 'Nostradamus', the last release, and that was a concept experiment and it was a real success for us and the fans loved it, but I think our fans and ourselves as a band, we want to get back to the side of PRIEST that we haven't heard for a few years and reemphasize and remake those big, heavy metal statements again." ]
Long-running U.S. metallers RIOT will release an as-yet-untitled new album in 2014 via SPV/Steamhammer (in North America and Europe) and Avalon/Marquee (Asia). The band will enter the studio in December to begin recording its first studio CD without guitarist and founding member Mark Reale, who died in January 2012 in a San Antonio hospital due to complications of Crohn's disease — an ailment he had battled for most of his life. He was 56 years old.
Although no decision has yet been made in the matter, RIOT bassist Donnie Van Stavern has revealed that the group's new album may be issued under a different band name — presumably in recognition of the fact that Reale was RIOT's only remaining original member prior to his passing.
RIOT states about the upcoming CD: "Extensive press release coming soon as well as info and samples.
"Thank you, fans, for your support!
"Thank you, Mark. This is for you and dedicated to you! Shine on, metal warrior!"
Former SKID ROW frontman Sebastian Bach is currently in the studio working on his next album with producer Bob Marlette (BLACK SABBATH,ALICE COOPER), who helmed the singer's last solo CD, 2011's "Kicking & Screaming".
Comments Bach: "Today we are back in the studio crafting riffs and working on melody lines. Bob Marlette is working his magic and helping me out with the upcoming opus of epic-ness. Expect high-energy music.... perfect for driving quickly, or jack-hammering concrete. Working on lyrics... but don't want to beat you over the head with sobriety, or ex-wives, or ex-bandmembers, or any of the other constant bullshit that I seem to be personally dealing with. So I am choosing my words carefully... because this music is straight-up, balls-to-the-wall, kick-you-in-the-nuts rock 'n' roll. And I need the words to reflect that."
Bach's next solo CD, which is tentatively due in early 2014 via Frontiers Records, is expected to feature contributions from Steve Stevens(BILLY IDOL) and Los Angeles-based guitarist Jeff George, who previously played with ASKING ALEXANDRIA's lead vocalist Danny Worsnop. Making a guest appearance on the album will also be bassistDuff McKagan (DUFF MCKAGAN'S LOADED, VELVET REVOLVER, GUNS N' ROSES).
Bach's brand new CD/DVD package, "ABachalypse Now", was released in North America on March 26 via Frontiers Records. The "ABachalypse Now" Ultimate CD/DVD Edition includes never-before-seen footage from last year's Graspop Metal Meeting festival in Dessel, Belgium, the full never-before-seen Hellfest set from France and the fully-remixed and remastered Nokia show from Los Angeles (originally broadcast on AXS TV), as well as bonus music videos. The DVD contains a running time of nearly 160 minutes.
Reunited METAL CHURCH — Ronny Munroe on vocals, Kurdt Vanderhoof and Rick Van Zandt on guitars, Steve Unger on bass, andJeff Plate on drums — has set "Generation Nothing" as the title of its new album, due before the end of the year via Kurdt's label Body Of Work Recordings. The CD was recorded at Vanderhoof's English Channel studio in Washingtion. The band previously stated about the new effort: "This could be the best MC record of the METAL CHURCH MK3 era!! Woohooo!!"
Munroe said in a recent interview with Metal Assault that the newMETAL CHURCH CD would contain material that is "very reminiscent of the old days with some stuff that's very 'now.'" He added: "There's a bit of… I'm not going to say 'prog' because it's not, but there's a couple of elements in there that are a little bit progressive. For the most part, out of this batch of songs, they really sound more reminiscent of the early days than anything we've done before with this lineup. This excites me very much, and I think the fans are really going to dig it."
Regarding the circumstances that led to METAL CHURCH's breakup in 2009, Ronny said: "Well, in a nutshell, without going into a huge and long story here, it was certain aspects of things that had continued to happen to the band throughout its career. Not having the proper management and the proper people in place that were handling us